MANDOBASSMAN  
         
         
 

ABOUT ME

 
My name is Ken Noble. Born October 10, 1957 (good year for Chevy!). My father was career USAF so we moved around a lot when I was an infant/toddler. My father worked on the flight crew of C130 cargo aircraft. He also fought on the USAF Boxing team. In his off time he played Mandolin in a country band. My family on my fathers side was very active musically. My Grandfather used to play Lap Guitar and Tenor Banjo to back up his twin brother who played a mean Fiddle. My Grandmother played along on Piano. My Uncle Harry accompanied on Guitar and sang. My Aunt Polly also played Piano and Organ. Later in life my Grandfather began playing Fiddle along with his Brother. Grandpa lost part of the fingers on his left hand as a child in a hay baler accident so even though he was basically right handed he played left handed. Instead of restringing the Fiddle though, he just flipped it over to the other hand and learned to play backwards! He and his twin entered the Twin Fiddle Division at the National Fiddle Contest in Weizer, Idaho and took first place.
 I started learning music in the 4th grade. My folks started me out taking Violin lessons at school. I didn't care much for the classical style then and being a shy kid smaller than normal for my age I didn't take well to the "poindexter" image so I didn't stick with it. A couple years later Grandpa gave me one of my Fathers old Mandolins which was a better fit. In High School I picked up Guitar and played a little in the Stage Band at school and played in a Country/Rock band by the name of "Shade".
After High School Graduation in 1976 I enlisted right away in the USAF where I was trained as a General Purpose Vehicle Mechanic (grease monkey). Injured my back 2 years into my 4 year term and pretty much decided the military wasn't for me. After my Honorable Discharge in 1981 I bummed around my home town in Californias East Bay Area living in a VW Van for several years. I supported myself doing Leathercraft, making saddlebags, holsters, leather cases for just about anything. I built my own custom BMW motorcycle and rode with some of the local bikers until I laid the bike down on the freeway. I traded the bike for a converted postal service step van and set up shop doing my leatherwork for a few more years before relocating to Oregon to be close to my Mother whose health had begun to deteriorate. Went back to school and earned an A.A.S. Degree in Drafting Technology followed by a 12 year Career as a Computer Aided Drafter for a Major Engineering Consultants Firm and Monaco Coach Corp. While working I revived my musical interests and became active in the local music scene. I started my first musical instrument project which was the Mandobass that I still play today at a local friday nite music jam.
I started spending a lot of quality time with my Grandpa traveling all over Oregon and parts of Washington and Idaho to Old Time Fiddle shows and contests. I built my first Mandolin which I used to accompany Grandpa everywhere we went. We went to the National Fiddle Contest 5 years in a row where Grandpa took "Oldest Fiddler" all 5 years. My Mandobass, shown at the top of these pages, earned a reputation there for it's exceptional tone and uniqness and I was called upon more than once to talk a little bit about it on stage for the contest audience.
Somewhere in the middle of all this I met Luann Cash/Ritts and started playing Bass for her band called "Cash & Company". She modestly downplays her possible family connection with the late great "Man in Black" Johnny Cash but considering the fact that her family comes from the same part of the country and her singing talent, I am convinced she is definately a leaf from a branch of that family tree. I played with her for over 15 years.
Well that's a pretty general background on myself. You can find more details here and there on this site. Thanks for visiting my site, Enjoy.