Nine Questions with Cal Koat

Name: Calvin Reynold (yes, that’s my middle name) Koat

Birthplace: Vernon, British Columbia

Currently residing: Vancouver

Musical past and present in one rambling run-on sentence:

I always loved bass guitar, ever since I saw Paul’s Hofner, and again, when I saw the Rickenbacker headstock on the sleeve of Deep Purple’s Machine Head, which is when I discovered that I really liked the sound of a Ricky bass as well (coincidentally, Paul started playing a Ricky when they made him a left-hander but I digress), and I always wanted to play one, but never got around to it until I graduated from BCIT Radio Production Technology in 1980 and went to Chilliwack to work all-nights at CHWK, where there is little to do but maybe, let’s see … take up the bass, which I rented and learned to play, which came in handy when I started my first band called Custer’s Last Bandstand, who came around at just the right point in history when another radio station, Coast Radio was giving tons of airplay to independent bands, which we were in spades and consequentially, because I started working as a second in a basement studio and recorded our first cassette called Pull For Boost, got us tons of airplay for a stupid song I wrote called The Final Frontier that we don’t play any more but we’re still together, and I’m playing with another cover combo called Duck and Cover and, I have a Chris Squire signature edition Rickenbacker bass, which I love dearly.


1.  Who are some of your favourite composers, musicians and bands from the past and present

I read an interesting article recently which stated that the sounds you’re exposed to when you’re fourteen stick with you for life. So, here is a chronological list of the artists that have shaped my musical present, in order from fourteen onward: The Beatles, Elton John, Pink Floyd, Genesis, 10cc, REM, Husker Du, The Church, Bob Mould, The Smithereens, Afro Celt Sound System.

2.  Is there a particular song or musical passage that never fails to move you emotionally?

An English hymn done a capella by Oysterband, called Bright Morning Star. I want it played at my funeral.

3.  How would you describe your perfect day?

Making love, a great breakfast, a long walk, a steak with onion rings, a martini, a movie and a soundtrack to it all.

4.  What would your friends say they appreciate the most about you?

I hope they say my loyalty. I’ve always had a division between friends and family. Friends win out in my books.

5.  What is your most valued material possession?

I have two: my cherry ’71 Pontiac Firebird and my Chris Squire signature edition Rickenbacker bass (oh, did I mention that earlier?). Sufficient to say, I’m woefully attached to my material possessions.

6.  Who were you, or would you be nervous to meet?

Peter Gabriel, but I will interview him one of these days. He’s the guru of everything I believe to be true about contemporary global music.

7.  If you could blink your eyes and be in a favourite place right now, where would that place be?

Tahiti, Hawaii, Rio … some place warm and exotic with women the colour of caramel.

8.  Is there something you would like to do more of in the future?

Make money.

9. Where would you like to find yourself in ten years?

I really enjoy what I’m doing now and I hope I have the opportunity to keep doing it for ten, twenty, thirty years. But, the work I do in contemporary global music, commercial production and voice-overs has to start showing more tangible results. I don’t mean to sound materialistic. I’ve always given freely of my talents, but I would like to start being better compensated for my efforts.

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