Things are looking up. My shoulder is rehabbing like crazy. Quite frankly, I’m more than satisfied with my progress. The pain is gone, I do my rehab every day, and rehab makes the muscles in my shoulder sore, but the ‘pain’ is gone. And sore is good, that means the muscles are working and getting stronger. I’ll do the exercises to both shoulders for the rest of my life. Best of all, I’m playing the blues on my guitar for over an hour a day before my shoulder fatigues.
I’m also in a major learn to play new guitar songs roll. You already know it’s either Jimi Hendrix or Stevie Ray Vaughan music. I wanted to mention the stock ‘Blue Marvel” speaker crapped in my Peavey Classic 30 amp. It did not take long to decide what to replace it with. My old friend and guitar teacher, Richard Mac always used Celestion Vintage 30 speakers, so you don’t have to put to much thought into what is in it now.
I also changed the power tubes. What can I say, it is like a second honeymoon. I’m just getting into amps and reverb and distortion and loving it. I was borrowing a Marshall JCM 600 combo while my Peavy was down. I played the shit out of that amp. Remember, it was in the spring time here in Florida and not too hot to play in the garage, so my neighbors and our best friends got serenaded every day, and they loved it. Or maybe they just love me, but I always got a compliment. They like Stevie Ray.
Well, speaking of compliments, my greatest fan (my Dad was my greatest fan before he passed away, everything I play is for him) was listening in on me last night, my wife. She was doing computers and I was enjoying the new tone and reverb of my amp. And I was working on “Empty Arms” by Stevie Ray Vaughan. I know she likes that song and the type of beat it has.
Well, it’s possible my facts are not in exact order, but I’m positive this is what she said. “Dude, you have all the tools now” All you need is more fluidity. Fluidity is rhythm to me and I work my ass off on that. It is my weakness, but practice, practice and I’ll nail it someday. She is a heck of a finger picker in her own right and showed me a few ideas on how loose up and then she asked me to….
“teach me” “Empty Arms”. I needed the positive input, I work, or actually have practicing the little top secret SRV and Jimi Hendrix tricks Richard Mac taught me for years now. I love it, but it can be tedious. We spent a while going over the intro section and ha a good time, I hope we play more together in the future.
My evening was made with that sincere compliment, she does not bullshit anyone, so I know it’s true. I mean if you are ugly and ask her how you look, she might say “your ugly”, (but only to me)!! Honest she is, and that is good for me too. So I felt good last night.
Back to my amp. It seems like every accomplished guitar player i know has a Classic 30. Even if they have Jimi Hendrix Stack or Bogner Shiva setup, there is always a usable Peavy in the room. Although my speaker experience is limited as of now, I have to say that the Celestion Vintage 30 and new power tubes really brought out the life in my amp, and makes playing Jimi Hendrix stuff sound more authentic.
It sounds so wide open, with clear reverb and a new clarity in every note I struck. I understand it is a personal issue, but I would highly recommend this speaker for blues players. Although, I think most folks would love it regardless of genre.
That is about it on this post. Keep on playing your guitar, even if you are in a rut, just play your way out of the rut. The harder the material you choose the deeper and longer the rut can be. My style is to choose Jimi and Stevie Ray vibes right from my first lesson, and I have put a lot of practice time in. Never even approached an easy song, myself. But that does not work for everyone, that is why they make guitar lessons for beginners programs.
People want immediate gratification in the process of learning guitar, so I recommend learning in a more classical manner than jumping on Jimi Hendrix right off the bat. So, I still can’t and don’t care to play any simple songs now, but I can make good sense out of many Jimi Hendrix and SRV and Buddy Guy songs and leads, exactly the way they played them, or it does not count for me.
Life is good for the moment. That is subject to change, So, maybe my wife and I will party this weekend, we don’t drink, we have other ways of adjusting our attitudes that are more fun and less harmful than alcohol or hard drugs. You have to use your imagination to decide what I mean!!
Take a tip from the scale-master, learn your scales and some chords, I know a lot of guitar players will say “I never had a guitar lesson”, well good for them, that does not mean you don’t need lessons. Good luck and enjoy. GuitarPlayersCenter.com
PS. I wanted to update you, my friend Allen and I are getting together tomorrow to start planning what pickups and other electronics to use in my black walnut Stratocaster project.
He has the template an excellently equipped wood shop, and more experience at building a guitar. Stay informed. I’ll keep you posted.