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Just who are The Shades? Well, come on and meet the band!
Mark Patrick "Pat" Aflafla is the drummer and percussionist for The Shades. He is also the newest member, replacing fan favourite Rudolph "Rudy" Myhnt. Unfortunately, Rudy got an overdose of "christian" and was last seen wearing black and yellow spandex and chasing a well known has been "christian rock" band's bus. We sincerely hope that Rudy gets the help he needs and is able to find his way back to the world of Rock and Roll.
"Pat", as he likes to be called, hails from Flin Flon, Manitoba in Canada. Pat was drumming in the womb.....must have been his mother's big band records. His much older sister introduced him to Iron Butterfly at the age of five, starting him on the path of Psychedelic Jam Music. He is, however, at home with any type of music. He says "Eh" a lot and will answer to "Frost Bitten Canadian Boy" after consuming mass quantities of Hamm's Beer. His percussion skills are legendary and he brings a unique sound & vision as the newest member of the Shades. He cites Steve Smith, Bill Wade, Jack Dejohnette, Joe Morello, & fellow Canadians Neil Peart & Gary McCracken as influences. He's played in the bands Hazardous Waste, Total Release, & Scorcher. Pat also played with Mike in Atomic Omelet & it was at Mike's suggestion that Pat take over Rudy's spot on drums. Pat plays Tama Granstar Drums in a silky yellow finish with various Tama & Ludwig snares. Pat prefers a drum throne upholstered with genuine Saskatchewan Salmon Skin (for real safety). He uses Zildjian Cymbals, Vic Firth sticks and lots of other things that make a lot of noise, and he can't wait to use them all. He listens to classical music to get pumped up and extreme metal to wind down....Takes the elevator just for the music (he's wired a little different). He is rumored to be an explosives expert....but he's not talking. Pat is happily married and is the father of a beautiful & talented little girl. Welcome to our own Little Corner of Hell, Pat!!!
Michael Easom "Mike" Hunt is the guitarist for The Shades. Mike hails from Ballyshannon in County Donegal, Ireland originally. How he ended up in Little Rock, AR is anybody's guess. Mike is very self effacing when it comes to his style of guitar playing, simply calling it "minimalistic". He does take a somewhat melodic approach when coming up with his lead work. He prefers writing with a partner, be it with Raj or Pat or the both of them. He says he gets his best ideas bouncing things off of his bandmates. You should have heard the idea he came up with after bouncing a tire tool off of Pat's head. Pure genius. And after a brief stay in the hospital, Pat was right as rain. Mike's influences include Tommy Bolin, Neil Young, Larry "Rhino" Reinhardt, John Fogerty, Kenny Hickey, Rory Gallagher, Scott Gorham, Earl Johnson of Moxy, John Lennon, and George Harrison amongst others. Mike favours a 2011 Dean Dave Mustaine VMNT EndGame, a 1979 Fender Strat with a natural ash body & a mid 90's Aria Pro II. He also uses a 1979 Yamaha FG 335 Acoustic Guitar. In his previous life Mike has played with Atomic Omelet, NewQLer Chicken, Rooster Roadkill, and Danny & the JackKnifes. Mike tries whenever possible to stay out of the public eye. He is an intensively private person who prefers staying at home whenever possible and watching as much porn as is humanly accessable in one sitting. Mike, though never married, is still quite the ladies man. He has remained single after having his heart stomped on, steamrolled, shot, and generally torn apart by wild badgers.
Raj Mahal hails from parts unknown and is thought to be in the witless protection program after witnessing....well, we really can't say, can we. He was born a long time ago to a Mom and a Dad. Raj started developing his vocal style at an early age when Dad unknowingly pinned both sides of the Raj's diaper onto him. Raj stayed in this predicament until Mom came home and Dad was completely exasperated by the incessant screaming that Raj was doing. Whereupon Mom examined Raj's diaper and discovered both safety pins fastened securely to the flesh at both hips. Dad, of course, denies doing this on purpose. When Raj was 11 years old, he took guitar lessons from local guitar legend, Charlie Short. After 3 years of guitar lessons, Raj abruptly switched to bass and decided he had found his calling. He started listening to all the bassists he could. His first real exposure was Paul McCartney of the Beatles. However, Stu Cook of Creedence Clearwater Revival was also a huge influence on him. Raj was also influenced by Geezer Butler of Black Sabbath, Billy Talbot of Crazy Horse, Steve Priest of Sweet, Dusty Hill of ZZ Top, Peter Steele of Type O Negative, Nikki Sixx of Motley Crue, & Pete Way of UFO among others. Raj favours Fender basses with a 1972 Reissue Jazz as his main bass for recording.. He also uses a 2000 fretless Fender Jazz, multiple Fender Precisions, a 1968 Gibson EB-2, 1972 Gibson EB-0, 1976 Univox HiFlyer, a 1998 Danelectro Long Horn & a custom built Warmouth bass with a P body and a Jazz neck. As a matter of fact, all of Raj's Fender basses are equiped with Jazz Bass necks with the exception of his 1972,1976 & 1998 Fender Precisions. All of the Fender and Warmouth basses are equipped with Leo Quan Badass Bass Bridges, Schaller Keys, and in the case of the Warmouth, DiMarzio P-Bass pickups that are loud as hell. For his occassional guitar playing Raj uses a 1998 Gibson Les Paul Studio, a 2008 Fender Strat and a 2006 Guild D40 Richie Havens Model. Raj has embarked on a quest to have as many guitars & basses as possible before he dies.
NO PICTURES PLEASE!!!
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