Friday, June 30, 2006

Guitar Center Online Store

Guitar Center owns MusiciansFriend, but now they have started selling through their Guitar Center website (it used to just be information about the actual stores.) The two sites are interwoven (the reviews from MusiciansFriend are being used on the Guitar Center site) but I can't help wonder if this means that eventually they will do away with the MusiciansFriend brand?

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Go Moog Go

I have always thought synthesizers were damn cool. Still do; as long as they are used appropriately! Here's an interesting little video of an improvised synth 'solo'

And let's hear it for the drum machine! woot!

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

UMGF Weekly Summary #7 Jun 26

Find it here.

I think I can safely say that I have reached my maximum with Select Hardwood necks. I know what you're saying; you had enough of the topic two months ago. Well either way, there's a little more information in this weeks report, but don't look for anything more soon.

Some interesting maintenance issues are covered including; fading bridges, wire cutters, and tuning machine replacement.

We finish up with gig bag and instructional DVD recommendations.

Favorite Line In A Beatles Song

The River radio station was playing the first part of The Long One/Huge Melody from Abbey Road and I was reminded of one of my favorite lines:
And so I quit the police department
And got myself a steady job

I don't know why that line always makes me smile. Maybe it's because my first boss was a policeman before he became a computer programmer and I always think of him when I hear that line.

James Blunt - Breath

James Blunt played EarthFest this year. The first song he played, Breath I liked a lot, though it appears to be currently unreleased (at least, there's no version on iTunes!)

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Wise Men Say

Dave Matthews performing The Stone

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Newport Guitar Festival

The Newport Guitar Festival is a gathering of guitar builders that first took place in 2004. Now they're planning a bigger and better festival to be held in August 2006!

The last show was more guitar show than conference or anything else. They did offer a few seminars, but really it's a way to see guitars, not to learn about them. It's a great way to see all kinds of small builders wares; though it was kind of noisey in the large room so it may or may not be the best way to hear a guitar.

Anyway, if you live near Newport Rhode Island, and are into accoustic guitars, then plan to go to this!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Daylight Again

I just ordered the Crosby Stills & Nash DVD Daylight Again for one reason; I really like Stephen Stills song Treetop Flyer but you can't get it on CD or iTunes at the moment. :( The only place I can seem to find it is on this DVD.

Danger! Guitar Center Coupon

Guitar Center is evidently sending out a 20% off coupon to customers. You can use it for a single item (with some limitations.)

I haven't got one and I'm not sure I want one; though I get most of their mailings, so maybe it's "in the mail"?

I'll just lie down and take some deep breaths.... "I do not need anything, I do not need anything..."

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Guitar Picks

Lots of information about guitar pick material.

UMGF Weekly Summary # 6

Safety is this week's topic of choice; how to safely remove labels and pickguards, install jacks, and how to ship your beloved Martin. Insurance alternatives are also covered.
There's lots of tips for guitar cleaning, and if you don't know if your pins are seated, then you'll want to read "Have YOUR Bridge Pins Been Properly "Seated"??"
For Flatpicking Newbie's, there's some Internet resources, and we conclude with a comparison of the D-18A vs. D-18GE.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Common Rotation - Let Her Go

I have no idea if this is the correct title of the song, but this is another song from the Common Rotation concert.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

John Doyle - Across The Western Ocean

In association with the Irish Connections festival Club Passim held some special events last week. On June 7th was The Singer and the Song hosted by Aoife O'Donovan (of the band Crooked Still). This was a song circle with a number of performers, including John Doyle.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Taylor Guitars "Factory Friday"

Taylor Guitars has been putting up weekly video clips about guitar building. This week's clip looks at final assembly and covers; installation of the Expression System pickup, setting the neck angle, detailing and cleanup.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Classical Mystery Tour

Classical Mystery Tour are four guys that dress up like, and sound like The Beatles. I saw them this past weekend at The Boston Pops, and they do a pretty good job. The guy that 'played' Paul McCartney was very good, and the songs they did that night were somewhat tilted towards McCartney numbers. They started with Got To Get You Into My Life and ended with Hey Jude (well, actually they ended with Twist and Shout, but that song wasn't written by The Beatles ;) )

The Lennon singer was good; though he didn't sound as much like John. Among the songs he sang were All You Need Is Love and Day In The Life. The only George Harrison number they did was While My Guitar Gently Weeps, and "Ringo" didn't get to sing even one song!! They did part of the medley from Abbey Road (starting with Golden Slumbers and though it's a silly minor point, I was dissapointed that they didn't have "Paul", "George" and "John" doing the guitar solos in The End rather than having "George" play all of the solos (which he did play well.)

If you want to see a great performance of that medley, pick up the DVD of "Concert for Montserrat." It isn't The Beatles, but it is Paul McCartney, and the guitar solos are played by Paul, Eric Clapton and Mark Knopfler.

Only half the concert was these guys; the other half being a regular Boston Pops concert, so we didn't get the 30 songs mentioned in the groups website. I'm not too sure whether I'm that upset about it though; I mean they were good, and it was fun that they started out dressed in suits, changed into Sgt Peppers garb, and finished looking like The Beatles on Abbey Road but really, it wasn't The Beatles. But it was a fun night out.

UMGF Weekly Summary # 5

The 5th installment of the UMGF Weekly Summary has been posted.
Another interesting week on the UMGF starts with questions about parts, top grading, and two threads about young players. An interesting discussion about kit building almost has me itching to build one myself, and the discussion about guitar 'sweet spots' is included if only because it features the description of a technique for sweet spot determination that is bound to get you noticed.

It may be heresy, but members offer some recommendations on composite guitars, and this weeks report closes with a reprint of an old post about Clapton's 'other' guitar; the one from the unplugged show.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Paul Brady - Arthur McBride

I first heard Paul Brady - and the song Arthue McBride - one day as I was channel surfing in the car and they happened to be playing it on WUMB. I actually had to wait through another song to find out who did the song!

Anyway, I really love his version of Arthur McBride; it's a great guitar piece. I've since seen him at Saunders Theater, and he played a benefit at Club Passim last week. It was a great show, and I got a recording of the song...and you can find the tab on the web too at his website.

Not sure if I'm up to playing it though!

This is the last half of the song, but it shows all of the major parts to the piece:

Friday, June 09, 2006

Treetop Flyer

Steven Stills did this on his first solo album, which is currently out of print and impossible to find. But here's a video of the song from the DVD "Daylight Again"

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Monday, June 05, 2006

Common Rotation

I hadn’t even heard of Common Rotation before I turned up at their show last night. I thought they were just some folk band. But there was something about the crowd that was a little different to your average Club Passim folk-night crowd. They were a little younger, more female, more pierced.

Then someone let me in on the secret; the lead singer appeared on Buffy-the-whatever-that-show was called. That’s what they told me; I have no idea if it’s true.

Either way, the show was really very good and a little different from the usual Club Passim show. Yeah, it was kind of like your typical folk-singer-songwriter-acoustic show. But it also had pop-rock underpinnings and some new wave/punk/experimental aspects to boot! Or maybe it just seemed that way compared to the acts I normally see!

Some highlights; well the biggest surprise was when the third member of the group pulled out a trumpet for one song. You don’t see that very often! And they closed by singing a song in the middle of crowd, which is always fun. I liked a lot of their songs; they were all quirky, but with an attitude. Sometimes it was hard to tell what the attitude was; given that they were so funny.

Common Rotation is definitely worth checking out!

New Martin's Announced

Twice a year Martin Guitar announces new models at the NAMM shows. Usually we have to wait until the show to find out what they are announcing, but Modern Guitars Magazine has a serious scoop (or Martin has changed it's policy) as they have a list of the new models, along with photos.

I think someone screwed up!

Anyway, some interesting things including: JC Buddy Guy Blues Signature Edition, 000-40S Mark Knopfler “Ragpicker’s Dream” Signature Edition, D-35 Johnny Cash Commemorative, and a new DC-28 model with cutaway and Fishman Aura. Save those pennies!

Oh, the photo for the Knopfler is currently pointing to the Peter Frampton guitar. The Knopfler can be seen here.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Shawn Mullins

I really like his song Beautiful Wreck and he's playing at the RiverFront Festival 2006, which is in Newburyport MA on July 8th. I'm wondering how much of a zoo that Festival is going to be...

Susan Werner

Put on a great show at Club Passim, May 13th. Vance Gilbert stopped by during the second set and played a couple of songs, which was really fun. She has a song called My Strange Nation which is funny and lefty, so if you're into that kind of thing, check it out on her website.

I believe that the song she is playing here is called My Lord Did Trouble Me, but I'm not certain. If you know, please drop me an email.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Neil Young - Busking

Neil Young in the street of Glasgow back in 1976 singing the old laughing lady on his banjo...