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International recording artist, music producer, and lead guitar player and music director with GB Leighton (Billboard.com - Top 10 Country Artists to Watch), who play over 150 live shows a year to sold out crowds in the Midwestern region, 70,000 album sales, and 19,000+ Facebook fans strong.

Born and raised in Sweden (itself a stronghold of pop perfectionism), Patrik grew up with a unique, outside-looking-in perspective on the expanses of American songwriting, and immersed himself in it early on. By thirteen, he’d already become something of a teen star in Europe, releasing bona-fide punk records with iconic Swedish Punk bands Mass Media and HUVUDTVÄTT (Headcleaners) on both Scandinavian and U.K. labels.

At eighteen, Tanner moved to the U.S., and, soon thereafter, released two solo albums with his Los Angeles-based band. Upon relocating to Minneapolis in ’94, he began his production career and has produced over 100 albums for local and national acts with major label record deals. Patrik has also enjoyed long term collaborative stints as lead guitarist with Martin Zellar (Gear Daddies) and Sire recording artists Tina & The B-Side Movement. Patrik then joined GB Leighton (Billboard.com - Top 10 Country Artists to Watch) as music director and lead guitar player. The band plays over 150 shows a year to sold out crowds. (www.facebook.com/gbleighton)

Along with his production and lead guitar career, Patrik has also released nine albums under his own name. The most recent release, På Svenska, was released in 2015. Patrik played to a sold out crowd at his release show at the American Swedish Institute in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He toured Sweden in October, 2015 in support of På Svenska.

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Surviving Dubuque 

So, you wrote the songs, you formed the band, and you are gonna see a million faces, and you’re gonna rock them all.  Or perhaps you will end up playing to 19 people at the Copper Penny Cantina in Dubuque, Iowa. There is no great way to get to Dubuque from Minneapolis, Minnesota. It’s not a straight shot. No, you will have plenty of awkward twists and turns, lots of time to let your mind wander. “Maybe it’s NOT too late to go to college.  Perhaps there is still a job waiting for me at Fantastic Futons. I bet I could make manager in a year if I put my mind to it.” At times like that, it’s best to be amongst friends. If there would have been an asshole drummer along on those trips, it might push you over the edge and give up Show Business forever.
 
If that is true, then I had surely been blessed. The drummer in the The Bullies was not only talented, but had a terrific sense of humor as well! Actually, the whole band was gifted and funny as hell. Good songs too.
 
The late ‘90’s! Grunge was over, and since that had gone so well, the next musical revolution was surely just around the corner.  In the meantime, The Copper Penny Cantina seemed like a perfect place to spend time awaiting the Good News of the new millennium. I kept reminding myself that it’s not all about instant gratification. Winning America over, one bar at a time almost appeared as possibly the most noble of pursuits. Bringing the music to the people!
 
The CPC actually had quite a few things going for it. The band ate and drank for free, and if you really felt brave, you could crash in an “apartment” upstairs from the bar. The bar had a tiny stage with an awkward kind of fence in front of it. I don’t think there was ever any stage diving going on at the CPC, so it was most likely there as some kind of ill advised western decoration. I seem to recall an abundance of wagon wheel planters as well. The van ride down from Minneapolis had been blessedly incident free. No blown tires, no speeding tickets. That huge crack in the windshield had not spread an inch in over a year! That’s gotta be some kind of record! Yeah, I got precious little to whine about. We arrive on time, get the gear out of the van and the following words were uttered by one half of the rhythm section:
 

“Has anybody seen my bass guitar?
 
A thorough search was executed, and did not yield the results we had been hoping for. The bass is question was a natural1975 Fender Jazz bass with a maple neck with beautiful pearloid inlays. I had helped Mr. Bassman myself to find this wonderful piece that was in mint condition.
 
Activate Plan B: Find someone in Dubuque, Iowa that owns a bass guitar. These days we would have all reached for our iPhones, but in 1998…well…You just start asking people. How hard could it be? The closest we got was finding someone with a super cool Rickenbacker 4001. Sadly, for us, it had not one string on it.
 
At this point there is nothing to do but make the best of it. No iPhones…No Black Keys, No White Stripes, no Red Pens. Kids: Remember: This is long before it’s da shit to not have a bass player in your band. This is the time to plug a Les Paul into the bass rig, turn off all the treble and avoid hitting the top two strings.
The sum total of this experience was that you have not really lived until you have heard “Peaceful Easy feeling” performed by four guitar players and a drummer.
 
On the van drive back to Minneapolis the next morning I am still fuming. “How does one forget to bring the bass?” I think to myself. I was certainly prepared. I brought TWO guitars! Back in Minneapolis, it’s time to unload the van, and something is seriously amiss.
 
WHERE ON GOD’S GREEN EARTH IS MY 1978 MAUI BLUE FENDER TELECASTER?
 
At The Copper Penny Cantina, of course. The shame! The irony! The humiliation!
 
I eventually get the guitar back from another Minneapolis band that had the heart to bring it back to me after their stint at the Copper Penny Cantina in Dubuque, Iowa. It was completely covered in sheets of Jägermeister. I’m sure it had a great time. 
 
Today, it’s Friday. Tomorrow morning I will be making the trip to Fairmont, Minnesota to play an entirely different repertoire, but with almost the same lineup as in The Bullies. Having said that, this is a much more sophisticated affair, I assure you! We will be covering the songs of one of America’s most beloved duos from the 60’s. Accordingly, we are appearing at an opera house (!) with nice cushy seats and a wine bar in the lobby.
Just today, I spent $900 for new brakes in the Volvo station wagon. There is only a tiny chip in my windshield, but that ain’t gonna go anywhere, ever.
So, what’s the problem?
 
For the past two years, the bass player (who still enjoys traveling to gigs without a spare bass) has been getting away with playing an instrument that is a ticking time bomb of willful negligent disrepair. I think he might be enjoying this. Perhaps it’s some kind of cruel mental experiment that is designed to drive me insane, never to return to Show Business.
 
Anticipating my own shortcomings, my wife recently gave me a box of nuclear waste green nametags for every piece of equipment I own. I suppose I wanna remain in Show Business for a little bit longer. I’ll let you know how that turns out…
 

Gretsch Guitars and the Element of Chance 

I was 17 years old when I first got the notion that I needed a Gretsch guitar. This would have been 1982, and I had seen a picture of one in a British pop rag about a best-forgotten band called Haircut 100. I also had it in my mind that Gang of Four used hollow body Gretsch’s to get that cool feedback sound that’s all over “Solid Gold”.  What did I know?

With this dubious information, I began calling guitar stores in Stockholm, asking for Gretsch hollow bodies. Bingo! Halkan’s Rockhouse had what was described as a 1964 Gretsch Country Gentleman in near mint condition with original case for 5800.00 Swedish Crowns. ($895.00) Armed with cash from my summer job at the graveyard mowing lawns I got on the train on a Saturday morning. Come Saturday evening, I was on the train back from Stockholm, guitar in hand, happy as can be.
About a year later, I thought that I had exorcised all my feedback demons, and the Country Gent was relegated to photo opportunities only. I had developed a short lived, ill-advised fascination with Fender Jazzmasters, largely because Elvis Costello was wearing one on the cover of his debut album. Ah, youth!

Fast forward to December 1988. I had made the Big Move from Sweden to America three years prior, and I was living in a tiny, drafty apartment in a sketchy neighborhood off of East Franklin Avenue in Minneapolis. I was about to become a member of “THE GRETSCH CLUB”. To become a member of “THE GRETSCH CLUB”, you don’t need to own a Gretsch. You only need to have SOLD a Gretsch. You also need a sob story about why you no longer HAVE a Gretsch. Yep: I sold my Gretsch Country Gent for rent money: The oldest, most tired of stories, known by many musicians and their suffering significant others. Oh well. Who needs a Gretsch anyway? I was 23 years old and NOSTALGIA had not yet tapped me on the shoulder.  The thing never stayed in tune anyway! Fast forward again, this time to 2001. Hollywood had eaten me up and spat me out. The signed band that I had played with had been met with less than stellar sales. Back in Minneapolis, I was 36 years old, and had started to get misty eyed about the past. What happened to that old Gretsch that I sold? Who owned it now? Certainly somebody far less deserving than me!

And so, the game was back on. I found a dealer in Canada with a 1969 Gretsch Country Gent with water damage and many non-original parts. No matter. All was forgiven. I had a Gretsch again!

It’s 2011 and I have a total of nine Gretsch guitars and basses. They are quirky, beautiful, impractical, old fashioned, mostly large, and pretty much the only guitar I play live. To re-string a Gretsch is kind of like folding a parachute: You probably wanna do it yourself. It is as if it’s saying: “Am I gonna stay in tune? Are you gonna make me?”
PRS makes excellent guitars, made of the finest materials. Stellar workmanship. I will never own one. I have a Gretsch bass where the “G” on the tailpiece in stamped out backwards. The binding on my second 1964 Gent is rotting and crumbling.  They all hate Minnesota winters, act up in the summer and are generally demanding and unpredictable. So why do I keep them? Why do I use them?
 

“THE ELEMENT OF CHANCE”. THAT’S WHY.

I am sitting in my studio. I have a computer and a bunch of software to make just about anything play in time and in tune. Very nice. Very helpful, but…
The best rock and roll is about barely contained chaos. It’s about the notion that the whole thing could fall apart at any moment. It’s about tension. It’s about danger. It’s about an unforgettable Johnny Thunders live in Sundsvall, Sweden in the early 80’s. It’s about old Gretsch guitars.

…These days, Halkan’s Rockhouse is on the web. I just checked out their site and lo and behold; they have a 1964 Gretsch Country Gentleman for sale with no issues and original case! “How much” you ask? 49.000. SKR, or $7,643.00.
Some people say you can’t buy happiness. They clearly don’t know about Gretsch guitars!

 
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