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remembering carl bennett former vengeance inc singer

Carl

The first real lead singer was our good friend Carl Bennett (after a string of wannabes and just whoever said they could sing, because guitar players in those days just wanted to solo and leave the singing to people who claimed to be lead singers).

He was also a fine musician, a good friend and a geniunely nice person.

Carl passed away in July 2016 after a struggle with cancer. We attended a “tribute” at a local club a few weeks before his death, where Carl attended but didn’t sing any songs.

He looked good, he was in good spirits and I’m sure he enjoyed seeing old friends who came out to sing and play for him. I can barely remember the guy with anything but a big smile on his face. He also had a wicked, dry wit and all his humor was self-deprecating, never at anyone else’s expense.

He was a real singer back when everyone who couldn’t play an instrument claimed to be a singer just to join a band. He was also a great guitarist and song writer who recorded dozens of songs in later years at Vengeance’s egstudios.

Carl was the singer from our living room and backyard party phase to our heyday at the height of Vengeance’s “keg party” days, when thousands of kids, who couldn’t get into bars after the recently passed drinking law, raising the limit from 18 to 21, needed somewhere to go to hang out, listen to music (and drink, get high and meet girls to, um, have fun with).
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fixed and improved

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In the past month I’ve accomplished some of the crap I felt needed done so I can wrap up this update for the next 10 years or so. I created this site in 1997, updated the design in 2006 and revisited it in July 2014 to do a less dated design.

I don’t foresee doing it again for quite a while. However, this time I have added quite a bit of new material and it’s all better organized, so it was worth it.

I do plan on re-encoding the live videos from VHS when I get a chance because these are from the 1997 version, then converted to flash, which wouldn’t work on this new site, so they were further degraded by uploading to YouTube.

I’ll reconvert and upload mp4 versions that can run directly when I get a chance. They are all on VHS and have to be encoded in real-time, and there’s 20+ hours of live videos, studio videos interviews and guitar clinics that will have to be digitized, edited into songs and encoded into the site, so it will take some time.

I also have all the rough footage for the Beijing video, which was never properly edited nor synched with the audio, and I’d like to do that sometime.

In other work I wanted to get done:

Last post:

Another thing is I’m not happy with how mp3 files open when you click on them. I don’t want to embed them all in jukebox type things because then they are hard to download, plus it’s hard to see all the songs and their information graphically that way. I’d rather find a lightbox solution that treats them like images and videos.

This is done. I had to modify the styles so that it works in table and doesn’t break the cells or crowd stuff out, but it works. There’s also a tiny download button that isn’t immediately obvious, but if the new re-release goes through I’ll have to remove the download links anyway, and perhaps only include samples of the songs instead of complete versions.

Somehow I’ve misplaced all the high resolution image files for the covers, and there is a possibility that we might be re-releasing all the old stuff and I’ll need to find those.

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improved live album digital files

Bad Live & Crazy

All the tracks for the Vengeance Bad Live & Crazy album have been re-encoded from the source files and remastered, recompiled and re-ordered with a slightly different list than the original.

All the tracks are actually taken from the audio track of VHS 1/2″ video tape, so it’s surprising the quality is as good as it is. It’s probably a testament to the faceless, nameless drones working the mixing boards when we were playing- after Liz left we had no regular mixing tech and were left to the tender mercies of whoever the blase house guy was. I always used to tip the soundman in advance to get him on our side.
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new site design completed

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Finished, finally. All my extraneous shit is in storage, so it’s going to be a while before I can do it, but all the video is VHS > VOB > mpg > flash > youtube format and pretty terrible.

I want to go back to the source, re-digitize, then put it on a local format so I don’t have to go through youtube.
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remembering curt


Former Vengeance Incorporated lead-guitarist Curt Smith, a brave and loyal friend as well as a beloved father, husband and son, passed away last week.

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transcribed interview

This is a transcript of an interview I did with the lovely Dyanne Davis of the now-defunct online magazine RoadBand Ezine, an ezine dedicated to playing bands and their influences, and she wanted to talk to me about our main influences, and settled on talking about Judas Priest.
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photos update

Rescanned about 400 photos, cropped, resized, retouched, watermarked and coded into the site.
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server change

I had to move the site to a new server and just finished getting some of the perl scripts working again and other matters and decided to write a few words. I never have gotten around to adding more of the promo material, international magazines and fanzines, as well as a wealth of live performances which exist only in analog audio form.
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videos update

It’s been fun looking at this old stuff for the first time in nearly 10 years. I hope people are entertained by it. Some of it shows age and our inexperience, some of it is very good. No excuses, take it for what it is.
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site update

The main redesign is finished. Added quite a bit of video, but not all the files are uploaded. The process involves converting the DVD I made some years ago from the original VHS to mpeg, edit them into song sized bites, then convert the mpegs to flash, code the flash into the page, then upload it all. To maintain some semblence of quality, the vids are 450×338.
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