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Jason Shadrick - 7 hours 40 min ago

via Instagram http://ift.tt/1r1yDRj
Categories: General Interest

Jason Isbell to Release Performance DVd

The Martin Guitar Blog - 15 hours 1 min ago

Martin Ambassador, Jason Isbell, will release a DVD of his Austin City Limits performance. 

JasonIsbell

When Jason's Austin City Limits performance aired on January 11th 2014, it only included six songs. But on November 24th, the full 15-song set will be released on DVD. It will feature songs from Southeastern and Jason's previous albums.

To learn more about Jason Isbell: Live At Austin City Limits, click here.

Categories: Manufacturers

Chasing Safety Drop Video for ‘Far Away’

Charvel Guitars - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 13:53


Chasing Safety recently released a video for the track “Far Away,” which comes off the band’s debut full-length album, Season of the Dead.

The clip shows footage of the Cherry Hill, N.J., hardcore merchants roaring through “Far Away” while a tie-wearing man seems to be losing his grip on sanity. Adding to the intensity is a healthy dose of jerky-jerky camera cuts that really keep the viewer on edge.

Watch “Far Away” after the jump.

 

 

Categories: Manufacturers

The Jeff Loomis Challenge

Guitar Noize - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 13:00

jeff-loomis-challenge
As part of Toontrack’s annual Metal Month, Jam Track Central and Toontrack give you the Jeff Loomis Challenge!

Download the audio track for Jeff Loomis’ playthrough with all lead parts muted from here. Then, record your own rendition of Jeff’s parts and upload your own video to YouTube, share it on Facebook/Twitter and hashtag it #JeffLoomisChallenge. Your entry will then be added to a Toontrack/Jam Track Central playlist. If you don’t have a Facebook account, feel free to email your YouTube link to: jeffloomischallenge@toontrack.com.

The post The Jeff Loomis Challenge appeared first on Guitar Noize.

Categories: General Interest

Awesome slap guitar lesson package by Fabian Ratsak

Guitar Noize - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 02:16


Fabian Ratsak contacted me yesterday to let me know about his new Slap Guitar lesson package, I have to say that is a first for me, I’ve never been sent information for a lesson package specifically about slap guitar. The slap technique is more commonly used by Bass players but has been used by players such as Guthrie Govan on recordings over the years. I think funk and fusion guitarists in particular will really enjoy this lesson package, the intro in the video above is awesome!

The package includes:

  • Full transcription of the main video in .pdf and .gp5 (transcribed by Levi Clay)
  • 10 foundation slap excercises in HD video and mp3 (slow/fast)
  • Slap blues song example (video/mp3) also in .pdf and .gp5 format
  • Backing tracks and drum loops to practice in various speeds

You can purchase Fabian’s Slap Guitar lesson package for just $5 here.

The post Awesome slap guitar lesson package by Fabian Ratsak appeared first on Guitar Noize.

Categories: General Interest

Stringjoy Custom Gauge Guitar Strings

Guitar Noize - Tue, 11/18/2014 - 13:26

Stringjoy Packaging
We’ve come a long way from when there were just a handful of guitar strings available — just take a look at the wall of strings at your local guitar store. The choices border on overwhelming.

Still, though there are a lot of brands to choose from, most offer the same handful of gauges. You’ve got your 9s, 10s, 11s, maybe a few hybrid sets. But if you want to handpick your string gauges like Hendrix did, your only choice is to buy multiple sets and combine them. Well, custom gauge guitar string company Stringjoy wants to change that.

“Guitarists will do anything to improve their playing and tone. We customize our guitars, swap tubes on our amps, search for the perfect combination of effect pedals, all to make us sound more like us—so why do we all play the same handful of string gauges?

We started Stringjoy because we wanted more out of our strings. At our site, you create your own custom set of strings, optimized for your gear and playing style—and nobody else’s. All our strings are made in the USA, and shipping is always free*. It’s your music. Play your own strings.”

Their electric and acoustic guitar strings start at $7 a set with free shipping*, or if you get 3 sets, they knock it down to $18.

Find more information here: Stringjoy Custom Guitar Strings.

*within the US, orders outside of the US are not available yet.

The post Stringjoy Custom Gauge Guitar Strings appeared first on Guitar Noize.

Categories: General Interest

MXR Il Torino Overdrive Designed By Carlo Sorasio

Guitar Noize - Tue, 11/18/2014 - 13:00

MXR il torino overdrive
The MXR Il Torino Overdrive pedal is an MXR Custom Shop pedal designed by Italian effect and amp designer Carlo Sorasio. The Il Torino uses MOSFET technology to recreate the gain structure of classic tube preamps, the result is a touch responsive saturation and natural sounding compression. Carlo also added a 3-band EQ section to fine tune your tone. The BOOST/OD switch allows you to toggle between Boost Mode “a cleaner sound with just the right amount of compression and sustain”, and OD Mode “a more aggressive, cranked tube amp sound”.

This pedal uses a sophisticated bypass system in the form of a Class A Low Impedance Output Driver — essentially a form of buffered bypass — to keep your tone sounding warm and natural across long signal chains where signal loss normally occurs.

For more info head over to jimdunlop.com, and make sure you check out the demo below:

The post MXR Il Torino Overdrive Designed By Carlo Sorasio appeared first on Guitar Noize.

Categories: General Interest

REVIEW: Blackstar ID:Core Stereo 40

I Heart Guitar - Tue, 11/18/2014 - 11:46

idcore40

Blackstar amps are famously versatile and user-friendly, but there’s always room for any company to innovate. And innovate they have, with their ID:Series amps and now the ID:Core line. The thing that’s so revolutionary about the ID:Core line (and there are stereo combos available in 10 watt, 20 watt and 40 watt configurations) is that on the surface they’re as easily controllable as any other Blackstar amp, especially due to the handy ISF (Infinite Shape Feature) control which gives you a range of tones from UK to US and any point in between. But the free Insider software lets you fully unlock the potential of the amp by plugging it into your computer and taking your preset-editing to a whole other level.

Buy Blackstar ID:Core amps on Amazon.com

On the actual amp the only controls are very minimal – basically only Gain, Volume and ISF, plus a mode switch to dial in your tone itself, then a basic effect section – but the software lets you tap into all sorts of extra parameters like Bass, Middle and Treble, different power valve models (EL84, 6V6, EL34, KT66, 6L6 and KT88), and greater flexibility over control of your effects beyond the simple Modulation, Delay and Reverb type and level controls that . The software also lets you share patches with other ID:Core owners or download artist-created sounds. The amp includes six different voices accessible via a selector knob: Clean Warm, Clean Bright, Crunch, Super Crunch, OD 1 and OD 2.

There are four modes each of studio-quality delay, reverb and modulation effects, and there’s a USB Audio jack so you can use the amp for recording, along with a Stereo MP3/Line In for playing along with tunes, and a speaker-emulated line out/headphone jack. There are two 20 watt speakers pumping out the rather theatrically-named Super Wide Stereo, designed to give you an immersive playing experience when rocking out along with your tracks or when messing about with the stereo ambient effects.

I plugged in with my Gibson Les Paul Traditional with Seymour Duncan Seth Lover humbuckers for testing, starting with the Clean Warm mode and working my way up. It immediately became apparent that Blackstar had put a lot of work into nailing the stock factory settings of each channel to be musically useful. This is refreshing because a lot of the time you’ll find that stock settings on digital gear are pretty extreme. Here there’s plenty of subtlety and detail. The two clean channels sound nice and three-dimensional (even before you engage the excellent reverb), and the crunch channels have just enough grit and growl. I was able to coax some positively Jimmy Page-esque tones out of the Crunch mode with the gain at about halfway and some subtle reverb. Super Crunch is great for heavier hard rock, while OD 1 excels at modern metal rhythm tones, and OD 2 is great for Satriani-like leads, especially with clever use of the delay and ISF controls and a little editing in the Insider editing program.

More than ever before, Blackstar has really nailed the idea of putting the power at your fingertips. This amp can be as complicated as you make it or as simple as you want it to be. Some players will be perfectly content with the incredibly usable stock sounds. Others will want to get in there and tweak each model just a little bit, while others will want to go nuts with custom-created amp/effect combinations. Whatever you want this amp to be, that’s what it is, from practice buddy to studio tool to live tonal mothership.

Categories: General Interest

Harrison Marcello of Tempt – Having Fun Never Goes out of Style!

Guitar International - Tue, 11/18/2014 - 10:24

By: Robert Cavuoto

3 Harrison Hard Rock

Harrison Marcello of Tempt

New York City based band, Tempt, is shaking up the rock world with their latest EP, a sound reminiscent of the fun and excitement of the ’80s, but now with a modern groove and fresh eye.

These young dudes have fans and critics hooked with their memorable guitar driven riffs and catchy melodies. Their four-song collector’s EP was put out as a way for the band to pay for travel expenses, to perform at the Rocklahoma and to showcase their first single, “Under My Skin.”

A completed CD is in the wings waiting for the right label.

Tempt is comprised of Zach Allen [vocals], Harrison Marcello [guitars, keyboards,], Zak Gross [bass,], and Jimmi Kane [drums]

I had the chance to speak with guitarist, Harrison Marcello, about the EP and CD. Though young in age Harrison shows he is just as on point during an interview as he is on guitar.

******

Robert Cavuoto: Tell me about the history of the band.

Harrison Marcello: Tempt actually started when singer, Zach Allen, and I were introduced by the legendary Jack Ponti.

Jack was working with Zach and saw some of my You Tube videos and he thought of putting us together as a collaboration, in the mode of Tyler/Perry, Richards/Jagger etcetera.

Zach and I are both from New York City, same age, and love the same music so we really hit it off. Before we knew it we had a dozen songs written and we headed into the studio in February 2013.

We added my cousin Zak Gross on bass and he knew drummer, Jimmi Kane, after jamming with him previously.

We did our first gig in June 2013 at Montana in New York City and followed it up with a club show at Sullivan Hall. We also did a mini tour last spring and played Rocklahoma Festival on the band’s first anniversary.

We’ve been fortunate to support great acts like Tom Keifer, The London Quireboys, and headlining local clubs on the East Coast.

Robert: Tell me about the music that influences the band and drives the songwriting process?

Harrison Marcello: My parents are musicians and exposed me to a lot of different music growing up. My first concert was Rush and as I began to take an interest in guitar, I was drawn to guitar driven bands with great melodies.

Zach and I write the music in the band and our collaborations can start in any number of ways. Sometimes I have a cool riff, sometimes it starts with a lyric. I’m also studying classical composition so that also influences me, as well.

Robert: I’m looking forward to the full CD, when can we expect it?

Harrison Marcello: We’ve recorded, mixed, and mastered 14 songs so the album is ready. We’re really just looking for the right partner to release it – a true believer if you will.

We’re going against the grain musically and the music business is in a real state of collapse. So we are navigating the new landscape and finding the right way is taking some time, but confident that the right opportunity will come along.

In short, we really want to bring rock back to the mainstream radio. It won’t be easy but we believe we can do it. We’re proud to be a rock band. We put out the EP first as a collector’s item to finance our trip to Rocklahoma. So many people wanted it we finally put it up digitally. In the meantime, we’re going to keep on rockin’ the live shows.

5 Harrison Rocklahoma-1

Harrison Marcello

Robert: What’s the secret to making classic rock sound fresh 30 years later?

Harrison Marcello: That’s a huge compliment. I think we just approach things in an honest and straight forward way. The ’70s and ’80s rock is a huge influence on us, but we’re not trying to recreate it, we’re doing our own thing. We’re going for great songs with guitars while keeping things light and fun. We’re not running away from those influences, but we’re not imitating.

Robert: Being such a talented and prolific player, what led you down the path of commercial rock?

Harrison Marcello: If you’re a guitar player I think you’re naturally drawn to the guitar greats and rock icons. From Beck, Hendrix and Ronson to Rhoads, Lifeson, and Sykes.

That doesn’t mean that I don’t have a lot to learn from blues and country. In fact, lately I’ve been listening a lot to Brent Mason. He is crazy good.

But I still can’t get over Def Leppard’s Hysteria. The songwriting and production are insane. I can listen to that album over and over with its great songwriting, production and guitar arrangements. Let’s face it, playing rock is just a lot of fun!

Zach and I are also still pretty young. We were 18 when we wrote and recorded the record and the music reflects that and I think rock music is how we can best express ourselves. We were born and raised in New York City and we’re not oblivious to a lot of what’s wrong with the world, but right now we’re writing from our life experiences and rock music is perfect for that. It’s what we love.

Robert: Are you seeing a resurgence in commercial rock?

Tempt EP coverHarrison Marcello: I think you can see it in a lot of places from YouTube to the cacophony at Guitar Center after school gets out.

People are ready for something different. They’re tired of watching a DJ push a button and waiting for the drop, they’re sick of the pre fab pop and the hipster shoe gazers. Most have never seen a rock show with a charismatic singer and guitar solos and when they do they love it and have a good time.

There’s definitely a community of bands that are playing rock that we’ve become friends with. Bands like Station, Nasty Habit and The Deafening are new rock bands that we regularly play with. The most gratifying thing is that we see the resurgence at our shows in the response of the crowd.

Rock crowds are also real fans. They’re not just in it for the singles they’re in it for the band.

Robert: What was it like to work with Michael Wagener on the EP and will he be producing the full CD?

Harrison Marcello: The record was actually produced by Tag Gross and Billy Straus from Sticky Audio Labs.

Michael mixed about three quarters of the album and he mastered the whole record. Mario McNulty who engineered and mixed David Bowie’s last album mixed the rest.

We actually worked remotely with Michael. We would send the sessions to him and he would mix them and then we would get on the phone and give him comments. He also gave me some great suggestions on adding a couple of parts here and there that really brought some of the songs to life.

We finally got to meet and hang with Michael at his studio when we were in Nashville. He also came to see us play at The Basement. He is one of the nicest people you can meet.

Robert: What did you learn from Michael that you applied to your songs?

Harrison Marcello: Michael is the guitar guy. There is only one person that I would like to work with other than the team we had on this record and that’s Mutt Lange.

As Michael was mixing the record, it was really interesting to see which mics he used and how he EQ’ed and placed the guitars in the mix. When we were having lunch at his favorite Sushi restaurant, he told us so many great stories about making some really classic records such as Dokken’s Under Lock and Key.

He also mentioned to me that he had been working with a band where the guitarist spent all his time looking at his guitar when he performed live. He said. “look at the audience, they’re the ones buying the tickets and the records!”

So at our Nashville show at The Basement I made sure to not look at my guitar and to look right at Michael during all the solos! I’m really looking forward to my next Sushi meal with him and I would love to be able to cut some of our new songs with him in Nashville at his studio, Wireworld.

Click here to view the embedded video.

Robert: What gear did you use on the CD and EP?

Harrison Marcello: We were really fortunate to make the record in an amazing studio in Southern Vermont called Guilford Sound.

Mike Hickey, who is Joe Bonamassa’s guitar tech, is a friend [check out Goat Reign!] and he lent me his Friedman and Marshall heads and a vintage Marshall cabinet. The cabinet was setup with multiple near and far microphones.

Every part was also simultaneously tracked with my Fractal Audio Axefx II and a DI for re-amping later if we wanted.

So for every take there were about six tracks going down.

Dave Snyder, the owner of Guilford, has an amazing mic collection. We had a lot of fun! I did all of the solos and clean parts with my Axefx II. I used my Suhr Modern for 95% of the record. It’s the best guitar I’ve ever played and is so sonically versatile. It’s a wonderful instrument that I saved for and it was worth every cent.

Mike also had a vintage Charvel that I used a bit and Billy Straus has an amazing ’59 burst known as the “Amber Burst” that I used on a track. All in all, it was a guitarist’s dream session.

Robert: What are a few things about your approach to the guitar do you feel are your own and tend to define what you do?

Harrison Marcello: My approach to guitar is not a guitar specific approach. I approach how I play as simply music. How musical can I make a line? How will that line fit in with the rest of the song? How does it fit in with the context of the section it is in?

From my years of playing music and even just as a listener, I have really started to hone in on what makes someone a great musician, as opposed to someone who is just a great guitar player.

When you first learn how to play the instrument, you can fall into the trap of just wanting to do everything technically and fast. You judge how good technique is, and normally you quantify that through difficulty.

Unfortunately, a lot of players do not mature out of this stage and even though they are fantastic technicians, that technique doesn’t translate to anything greater than itself.

I was very lucky growing up and was exposed to lots of different types of music before I even picked up a guitar, or before I even wanted to play an instrument. I came in as simply a listener, as everyone does, and I made sure I kept and still keep some of that purity to my sound by identifying and taking note of things I like and dislike about music I hear.

When I write for guitar, and especially for guitar solos, I always think about drama. Tension and release is what everyone likes to hear in music. A solo shouldn’t just be to show off, that is a waste of time. A solo is a piece of music that, when perfected, delivers something to a song that nothing else other than a guitar solo can.

It elevates it. It should be enjoyable for everyone to listen to. Not just guitarists.

Robert: There are some great dive bombs on the EP. Is that a nod to George Lynch and his likes or is it just goofing around?

Harrison Marcello: Dive bombs never get old! [Laughing]

It seems like it’s something that every beginner guitar player gets fascinated with and it never leaves them. I don’t think I consciously tried to make a nod to anyone in particular, more than to just tip my hat to that whole generation of great guitar players.

It is such an ’80s staple! For me I think it’s really an ear candy thing. I remember being amazed by false harmonics and dive bombs when I first started out playing. I don’t do them as much anymore. I find that the better you’re playing gets the less you feel the need to embellish or elevate it with pyrotechnics. But if there is an opportunity for one, you bet I’ll take it.

Robert: What are your touring plans?

Harrison Marcello: We’ve been invited back to Rocklahoma in May, so we will definitely be heading out and back again and we are working on some plans to get over to the U.K. and Europe this summer, as well as the West Coast. In the meantime, we’ll be playing up and down the East Coast.

Categories: Classical

The All Access Area Layout

Learning Guitar Now - Tue, 11/18/2014 - 07:18

For learning the lessons in the All Access Area that will teach you a lick, I’ve tried to present an interface that makes it very easy to learn and apply the lick you are watching.

I believe this layout makes a lot of sense and I hope you enjoy using it.

Watch the Video

You can enjoy all these benefits and more by joining the All Access Pass.

The post The All Access Area Layout appeared first on The Learning Guitar Now Blog: Blues Guitar Lessons.

Categories: Learning and Lessons

Using the Interactive Backing Track

Learning Guitar Now - Tue, 11/18/2014 - 07:15

In the All Access Area you will have the ability to easily use the backing track for all the Course Solos, and Single Solos that you can learn with the All Access Pass.

Using this new Interactive Backing Track makes it much easier to learn the solos that are in my Premium Courses.

Watch the Video

To me this is so much easier than trying to put this type of interface together with the Downloads or the DVD versions of the lessons.

You can enjoy all these benefits by joining the All Access Pass.

The post Using the Interactive Backing Track appeared first on The Learning Guitar Now Blog: Blues Guitar Lessons.

Categories: Learning and Lessons

The more things change....

Cape Cod Acoustics - Tue, 11/18/2014 - 07:00
Like countless work-a-day musicians I’ve played more gigs than I can remember over the last 40 or so years. OK, some were memorable but details are sketchy for the vast majority of them. I don’t get out to hear local live music much anymore (my bad….I should….) but in the last couple years I’ve observed some things that I find kind of interesting, compared to the days when I gigged a lot more than I do now. Here are a few.

It seems like guitarists have finally figured out that ear-splitting volume is not a good thing. My guess is that this may have at least a little to do with the quality of the gear that’s being used these days. With reasonably affordable PA systems readily available that offer great fidelity without the need for volume such as the Bose L1 series there is just no need to blast the audience out of their chairs to get their attention. This is a good thing!

In the same vein, electronic add-ons are being used to better effect. I well remember when acoustic guitarists became enamored with the phase shifter and chorusing back in the 1980s. Like a cook who uses too many spices in a dish, those boxes were used to the point that they were overbearing and sometimes almost unbearable to the listener. Sometimes they were used to good effect (although they sound kind of dated now) – think Christopher Cross’s “Sailing” or Fleetwood Mac’s “Rhiannon.” But usually they ended up disguising the sound of the guitar to the point of bringing on a slight feeling of seasickness. Today, many solo performers use loopers, compression and even Auto-Tune to add depth and interest to their performances. Some even use harmonizers with their vocals and while it may be a bit disconcerting to see one person singing while multiple voices are coming out of the PA, all those add-ons can make for a very good performance. If they are used with some degree of subtlety of course.

I also find it interesting that many single performers and bands have no qualms about attaching an IPad to their mic stands to keep a limitless supply of songs at their disposal. This is not a bad thing, just a bit curious to me being an “old school” guitarist who was (and still is!) proud of having his repertoire memorized. There was a time – believe it or not – when having a music stand on stage with you kind of implied some degree of amateurish musicianship. Why that was, I do not know. I subscribed to it, however. I think the idea of having an IPod in front of you when you perform may be a much better idea. In fact, I’m in the process of building files on mine that will surely make my performances more interesting. I hope so anyway.

Another observation, and I find this the most curious. While some solo performers and duos I’ve heard in the last few years in many places, from local bars, to places in the Florida Keys, and even on cruise ships do play a few modern pop songs, for the most part they still lean heavily on older songs. Why is it that “Brown Eyed Girl,” “Sweet Caroline,” and (gulp) “Margaritaville” are still sure to be heard when you listen to almost any solo guitarist anywhere? Does it have to do with the demographic of the audience, i.e., the age group? I thought so for a while but after spending an evening at a local bar not too long ago where the guitarist banged out those songs and dozens of others of the same genre to a great reception from the audience I came to a different conclusion. Those songs are tuneful, familiar and just downright catchy. The age group in the packed bar ranged from early 20s to oldsters who could remember when those songs were brand new. The performer threw in a very occasional tune by the likes of Ed Sheeran, Kenny Chesney and John Meyer but the audience reaction was much more subdued and no one sang along, like they did to “Take Me Home, Country Road.” And again – I’m talking the youngsters too, who may have first heard that song at their grandparent’s house! Are we in an era when strong melodies are just a rare thing? Or put another way, will anyone be singing a John Meyer song thirty years from now?

I don’t have an answer to those questions. All I know for sure is that I’d better be sure to upload some of those oldies to my IPad.

Peace & good music,

Gene

Categories: Acoustics

Next Generation Acoustic Guitar Case: Timbre Cases DNone

Guitar Noize - Tue, 11/18/2014 - 01:38


When I was studying music at University I knew a few Cellists and I often looked at their cases and thought they looked completely futuristic in comparison to acoustic guitar cases. I don’t know why it has taken so long for someone to finally re-think the guitar hard case but Canadian company Timbre Cases have created a product called the DNone that looks cool as well as indestructible and it has integrated humidity control pockets, it is waterproof and it even has wheels so you can pull it along if you have weak girly arms (just kidding ladies).

Other features include a 3.1mm aerospace grade Kydex shell which is a shock absorbent exterior that is both ultralight and rigid in structure, fully recessed latches & torqued hinges, colourfast – more impervious to scuffs and scratches and non-hygroscopic – it will not absorb or release moisture which is why it contains pockets designed to fit optional D’Addario two-way humidification packs made by Boveda. This system can preserve a 45% to 50% relative humidity level within your instrument’s case.

The case is designed to fit a Dreadnought acoustic guitar inside and has plenty of padding to protect your precious instrument no matter what the circumstances are. Remember this is a premium hard case designed for constant travel and gigging so it isn’t cheap but then neither is replacing your beloved Dreadnought guitar!

For more info click on the widget below:

The post Next Generation Acoustic Guitar Case: Timbre Cases DNone appeared first on Guitar Noize.

Categories: General Interest

Disston Rip Saw, Stanley Scrub Plane, Douglas Fir Guitar Top

Brokeoff Mountain Luthierie - Mon, 11/17/2014 - 15:47
Towering up to heights as great as 220 feet, with sometimes 100 feet of trunk clean of branches, arrow straight, and with almost no taper below the crown discernible to the naked eye, an ancient Douglastree may be 17 feet in diameter.

Donald Culross Peattie, A Natural History of Western Trees, 1953



Douglas fir isn't often used as tonewood for classical guitars, many makers think that it is too heavy of a wood to be used for guitar tops. The strength of Douglas fir is phenomenally strong, its specific gravity is 0.50 and its modulus of elasticity is 1.95! Compare that to Sitka spruce's specific gravity of 0.42 and its modulus of elasticity at 1.57.

I think it is great wood, and, yes, I am biased because I was weaned on a chunk of Douglas fir, it was a playmate along with ponderosa and sugar pines, incense cedar and black oak.

The point of all this is there is a young classical guitarist who wants me to make him a guitar with a Douglas fir top.



This is the last piece of old growth Douglas fir that I possess, it was salvaged from old bleachers and I acquired it from a trim carpenter who was making doors out of this stuff.

Just think of all the butts that sat on this wood...




Ripping it down with my trusty No. 7 Disston rip saw...




To the saw horse for the last few inches...




One problem with ripping out tops from a piece of wood that is under an inch in thickness is you don't always get to rip out two sets of tops. I suppose if I owned a real he-man Norm-ite 10 ton style re-saw bandsaw this wouldn't be an issue, but I enjoy the gentle noise of a hand saw.

To make sure that I end up with two pieces that are 5/32" to 3/16" of an inch thick, I reached for the No. 40 Stanley scrub plane.

Running this plane over and through the wood I can get a sense of the sound, the voice, this guitar top will have. I just listen to the blade cut the wood and I hear music...





The top after is has been smoothed with a No. 3 Stanley plane.

I have drawn the plantilla, or outline, that is based on one created by Manuel Hernandez and Victoriano Aguado, in 1961.




The grain on this piece of wood varies from 15 rings per inch to 32 rings per inch.

Very beautiful wood.

I can't wait to start working on this guitar...



Here is a YouTube of Karmen Stendler playing one of my favorite pieces by Joaquin Rodrigo.

Learning guitar: how to drastically increase your productivity

Guitar Noize - Mon, 11/17/2014 - 13:09

Every guitarist whether self taught or taking lessons will have been told, or read, that in order to progress you need to practice. Not only that but that you need to use repetitive tasks such as scales and arpeggios, chord progressions etc. to commit the building blocks of playing songs to memory before you can attempt to play entire tracks. The problem is that practicing scales for an hour with a metronome is mind numbingly boring, especially for beginners. What makes things worse is picking up the next day and feeling like you’ve barely made any progress, or worse, your fingers seem to have forgotten all that time you spent yesterday memorising a scale, exercise or guitar solo. So there must be an easier way right? Well Dr. Christine Carter,  a clarinetist who teaches at the Manhattan School of Music, believes so and wrote her dissertation on the contextual interference effect – a phenomenon that can help you make your daily progress in the practice room actually stick. 

A while ago I published a post called it’s not what you practice, it’s how you practice, which talks about breaking down difficult tasks into bite sized chunks in order to focus on the mechanics of the task first in order to achieve correct technique. The methodology in that article should used in conjunction with Dr. Carter’s methodology. 

If you’ve ever been to a gym class, bootcamp or similar you will already be aware of the concept of contextual interference. A personal trainer will ensure that you are doing different exercises in fairly quick session rather than sticking to one activity in order to boost your overall fitness and make your body work harder without wearing you out to the point you want to give up. This is the basic premise, you need to make sure you are not burning out on a single task which slows down your brain and body’s ability to retain the information and movements.

“Show a baby the same object over and over again and they will gradually stop paying attention through a process called habituation. Change the object, and the attention returns full force. The same goes for adults. Functional magnetic resonance imaging has demonstrated that there is progressively less brain activation when stimuli are repeated. ” – Dr Carter via Bulletproofmusician.com.

Dr. Carter’s theory is that once a repetitive task becomes comfortable you are no longer practicing at your peak level and you should move on to a new challenge. So how can we do this while still keeping the focus on learning something in particular, say the major scale? The idea is that for example you could play the major scale in first position 3 times, then move to 2nd position, 3rd position etc up and down the neck. Or maybe you could randomise the order in which you play the scale, choose an interval such as a third and play I III II IV III V IV VI V VII (C E D F E G F A), then fourths etc. 

“…my preliminary research at the Brain and Mind Institute in Canada provides empirical support for the use of a random practice schedule in music. Not only does this research suggest that a random practice schedule is more effective than a blocked schedule for practicing musical passages, participant interviews also reveal that random practice has positive effects on factors such as goal setting and focus.”

So what about if you are learning a difficult passage of a song, obviously randomising the chords, riffs or solo isn’t really the ideal situation. Instead spend a short amount of time playing the passage but interrupt yourself with scale, arpeggio or technique practice. When you go back to the passage you will have to concentrate just as hard as the first time so your focus will be enhanced. Then every few minutes interrupt yourself again with another unrelated task such as an alternate picking exercise. This may seem unnatural so it is probably best you write up a quick practice plan before you begin, it can be the same plan every day for a week if you like as you long as you are dividing up tasks within your allocated practice time. I would still factor in one fun day a week where you don’t practice anything in particular and just jam over backing tracks, write riffs or play along to your favourite tracks. This, in my opinion, is an incredibly important part of practicing guitar that helps remind you why you wanted to learn how to play in the first place and will offset any feelings of frustration encountered when trying to learn something difficult.

I hope that this helps to improve your practice results and please let me know in the comments if you have any additional suggestions.

The post Learning guitar: how to drastically increase your productivity appeared first on Guitar Noize.

Categories: General Interest

Monday Music Round Up- 11/17

The Martin Guitar Blog - Mon, 11/17/2014 - 08:46

Ed Sheeran To End Tour At Wembley Stadium!

Martin Ambassador Ed Sheeran continues to make history! He will be the first solo male artist to play Wembley Stadium in July 2015. You can watch the video that was released about the upcoming show here.

ed_sheeran_wembley

Colbie Caillat To Be Honored at She Rocks Awards

Martin Ambassador Colbie Caillat will be honored at the 2015 She Rocks Awards. Her inspirational video for "Try" will be given the award for Video of the Year. Martin Guitar's VP of Brand Marketing, Amani Duncan, will also be honored at the award show. To learn more, click here.

colbiecaillat1

Dierks Bentley Visits Martin Factory

Martin Ambassador Dierks Bentley visited the Martin factory last week before his show at the Sands Event Center. During the visit, Dierks checked out the Martin museum and tried his hand at shaping guitar necks. You can read a raving review of his show here.

dierks_shaping

Thomas Rhett Nominated for Breakthrough Act

Martin Ambassador Thomas Rhett is nominated for the first ever American Country Countdown Awards for Breakthrough Act. Thomas is also nominated in the Collaboration of the Year category for his single "Small Town Throwdown" with Brantley Gilbert and Justin Moore. Voting for the award show will begin on November 24th. You can learn more here.

rhett_american_country

Categories: Manufacturers

How to Make a Box Sing, Part 2

Brokeoff Mountain Luthierie - Mon, 11/17/2014 - 07:13
Here is a video of Kyle Throw playing the Torres/Santos style guitar that I finished this summer. The guitar has a Engelmann spruce top with California laurel back and sides, 650mm string length.

This guitar is very responsive, very loud and is capable of many musical nuances, with proper playing and care it will continue to improve and become a magnificent guitar!

Kyle performs the Fandanguillo from the Suite Castellana by Federico Moreno Torroba.

1967 Japanese Sekova Mentor 4-pickup wonder

Guitarz - Mon, 11/17/2014 - 02:07
guitarz.blogspot.com:
This Sekova Mentor guitar looks almost Italian with its four pickups and metal-covered banks of switches above the pickups. It also has a 26 3/4" scale length and an unusual body shape with a very deep cutaway on the treble-side of the body which is then negated by the inwardly scrolling horn.

Currently listed on eBay with a optimistic Buy It Now price of US $1,500.

For more info see Drowning in Guitars.

G L Wilson

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Categories: General Interest

MIDI Madness: Interview with Molten Voltage

Six String Soul - Sun, 11/16/2014 - 20:12

As the boutique guitar pedal scene expands, we begin to see inventive builders push the limits beyond the typical overdrive, fuzz, distortion, modulation and time-based effects that have been put out over and over again. It even opens up for other types of pedals to be created…such as pedals that don’t actually make sounds themselves, […]

The post MIDI Madness: Interview with Molten Voltage appeared first on Six String Soul.

Categories: General Interest

Toontrack releases Metal Guitar Gods 2

Guitar Noize - Sun, 11/16/2014 - 13:15

Toontrack  Metal Guitar Gods 2
Two years ago I posted a demo of Toontrack’s Metal Guitar Gods expansion pack for EZMix 2, you can watch that demo here, it features clean and high gain tones from some of the biggest names in modern metal guitar. Well Toontrack have just announced a new version with more heavy metal heavyweights lending their tones including Chris Broderick of Megadeth, Tosin Abasi of Animals As Leaders and Jeff Loomis of Conquering Dystopia.

“Metal Guitar Gods 2 EZmix Pack includes 50 custom amp and cab simulated tones, all of which were personally designed by the guitarists themselves. Find the soaring, saturated leads, the pummeling rhythm tones and all the tight semi-clean, ambient and effect soaked tones you’ll need for any spur-of- the-moment creativity.

This collection is a speed-dial to the tones you hear on albums and that the artists use themselves in their own recording and creative processes. Now, you too can sound like a god.”

Find more information and audio demos here:
Toontrack Metal Guitar Gods 2

The post Toontrack releases Metal Guitar Gods 2 appeared first on Guitar Noize.

Categories: General Interest

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