Sunday, October 12, 2014

Born in Chicago the Documentary

Unfortunately this documentary didn't attain the level of support needed to bring this project to completion. 

Born in Chicago the Documentary

It is sad to see that this project didn't make it to the general public.

Gibson G-Force and Min-Etune

I have already carped about this system in the past. I think that change and innovation is good but now it's being rammed down our throat. If you want a Gibson Les Paul, no matter which model, you will get the new improved Min-E tune which is now called G Force. If you don't want it, then pony up for a reissue Les Paul or a 120 model where the new system has yet to be employed. I am mostly disappointed in the entry & intermediate level instrument line where there is obvious lack of choice between traditional friction tuners as opposed to the electronic auto tune. I don't want to get emotional about this issue because ultimately the most important thing is that the new players receive tools that will enhance their creative ability. I could carp about relying on electricity but SMH (smack my head), we are talking about ELECTRIC GUITARS so what is the point? I guess I am holding on to the the lack of "Choice" as my bitching point. I think everybody should know how to manually tune their guitar. However, there is some very good arguments for installing the electronic tuning that Gibson calls G FORCE.

What is convenient about the tuning system is that the user can change tuning in seconds. This will expand the range of creativity for musicians. The users can install custom tuning and teach the G FORCE  to remember the tuning. The unit is rechargeable thus minimizing the need to buy batteries. Do you recall when guitar effects and/or foot pedals where dismissed as needless props? Conversely, now we see that the effect/foot-pedal market turned into a cottage industry where people are frothing at the mouth over the latest iteration of FUZZ pedals. With the foot-pedal mania somewhat satiated, I can see that the auto tuners could be seen as utilitarian as any famous effect pedal. One must admit that changing from standard tuning to drop D tuning in merely seconds is very enticing.

Like it or not, Gibson is trying to be your guitar company. It's a tough job satisfying the long devoted legions while creating innovations for tomorrows players.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Rare Film of Little Stevie Ray Vaughan before he was famous!

In this 1980 film footage, Stevie Ray Vaughan goes up on stage while The Fabulous Thunderbirds (his brothers band) take a brief break. Stevie plays Elmore James song "The sky is crying." If you pay close attention (the film as a brief period where there is no image) you will hear that Stevie walks up and plugs into the amplifier and from that point on he plays the blues with acute surgical accuracy while coupled to raw emotion, which I think is what Stevie Ray Vaughan was all about when he was on stage.

If Stevie were alive today he would be 60 years old as of October 3rd.


Thursday, October 2, 2014

Malcolm Young is not well

The other shoe drops as the news spreads that Malcolm Young is suffering from dementia and has been replaced in the AC/DC lineup. Since the AC/DC is a family run organization the effect of Malcolm's health must have been devastating especially in a business where the credo is "The show must go on." Let's all wish Malcolm and his family the best! Let's all welcome Steve Young as he fills in for Malcolm. Rock and roll ain't noise pollution!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Walter Trout is Getting Better

Walter Trout's recovery is nothing short of amazing. Honestly, 6 months ago I worried that we might lose a fine blues player. His story is not for those with weak knees and he has proven he is a fighter and isn't ready to hang up his guitar just yet.

Walter's wife posts updates that are inspirational and give you insight to Walter's good days and bad days. I look forward to seeing Walter put out some more music and inspire more musicians. God knows he has helped a few in his time.

This is a link to Walter's page; you can read all about his progress and buy his new Album or other merchandise. CLICK HERE TO GO TO WALTER TROUT'S OFFICIAL SITE

Click here for a update on Walter!

Click here to buy Merchandise!

Listening Post - What is inspiring me this week? October 1, 2014

Charles Mingus - photo by Don Hunstein

Some time has flown by and I haven't really had the time to post my current influences because life sometimes gets in the way and leads us down new roads. So while I have a moment I will post some of the music I have been listening to in the past week or two. Frankly, I am a click scamp and if I hadn't noticed that these posts sort of popped - I probably wouldn't bother. Thanks for looking!

Led Zeppelin II - They remastered it and the companion disc has backing tracks. This makes the album even more appealing~!!
Tom Petty Hypnotic Eye - the first time I heard "You get me high" make me reminisce about the first Petty album. More great hooks from an American icon. 
The Beatles  - Abby Road. Well, I bought a fuzz pedal and cranked up the reverb and played "She's so Heavy" until my brain was cooked, then I played some more!
The Doors - I loved the Doors as a punky kid and only now am I beginning to think I "get it." Late bloomer!
Black Sabbath - Paranoid - I have all the albums! BUT - now I need the CD's. I cannot play the albums in my car - damn it! Ozzy's lyrics are priceless. The sum total of this band kicked butt.
Imelda May - "It's good to be alive, Tribal, Hellfire club are all barn burners. Imelda always seems to tease her public with "The right amount of Wrong." I love this band!
Lou Reed - Everything this guy did is worth listening to because he had a reason behind all of it. Some of the reason he took to the grave while other reason were worn on his shirt sleeve.
The Prentenders - James Honeyman-Scott and Chrissie Hyndes, Johnny Marr, I hadn't really sat down and listened in a few years. I wore out the records. Honeyman-Scott played different than anyone else at the time. 
Iggy Pop and The Stooges - Raw Power. Search and Destroy... Raw power was an understated fact. To think that Iggy was influenced by the Doors just goes to show how people take what they hear and then do their own thing.
Gary Clark Jr - I bought the Live CD. The recording is done well, I heard a lot of tone and this is not washed out like some live CD's. Is Gary the second coming of Hendrix? I think that is a stupid question. Is Gary Clark talented and inventive? I'd say he has his own sound and his tone is thick and he puts on a hell of a show. Spare me the vapid racist Hendrix comparisons. Gary Clark rocks!

There is a lot of guitar centered references above. I've just been in that kind of mood and I've let my bebop slide but it doesn't mean I won't spin Miles or Mingus tomorrow. I guess I get into guitar music as summer closes and Fall begins. Autumn leaves are upon us so let's remember to buy good music and listen to it with good friends. 

Warren Haynes in a beautiful location!

You will learn about music you might not have considered if you listen to Warren Haynes influences. Warren has a huge bag of tricks from which he pulls his licks. Listen and learn.