Saturday, December 29, 2012

Take Your Pick #2


In this video, the second of two, I talk about higher quality and unusual picks. 



Thursday, December 27, 2012

Book Recommend

Years ago on a recommend from a friend I ordered up Mick Goodrick's Advancing Guitarist.

When it arrived I was expecting another book of scales and licks. But was at first disappointed at the lack of, um, scales and licks. This book was not like any other guitar book I'd ever seen. It wasn't another glossary of lines to develop your left and right hand chops. It was a book written to open your mind and thus your hands with lessons designed to get you out of the boxes we tend to climb into as we learn.

How often do you pick up your guitar, play a song or a solo, and think "I hate my playing" or "I wish I had some new ideas"? I know I have. Normal books would give you a bunch of licks (ideas) to memorize. But The Advancing Guitarist gives you new ways to think about how you play the guitar. It takes a minute for the light to turn on sometimes. But often it it's easy to see application in the concepts.

A lot of the book is dedicated to harmony and voicings. Probably the main takeaway for me.

On a related note check out my video on combinatorics...

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Take Your Pick #1




There's a corny bumper sticker joke that goes - Every guy has his gal, but a guitarist has his pick. This is part one of a two part video series on the importance of the pick you choose. In this video I talk about "signal path" and six different gauges of Dunlop picks which are...

Dunlop Nylon 1.0mm
Dunlop Nylon .88mm
Dunlop Nylon .73mm
Dunlop Nylon .60mm
Dunlop Nylon .46mm
Dunlop Nylon .38mm

Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Wrecking Crew - California Dreamin' - The Mamas & The Papas

Another song from the Golden Era of the LA session scene.


Featuring Wrecking Crew mates Hal Blaine on drums, Joe Osborn on bass, pianist Larry Knechtal and acoustic guitars by P. F. Sloan who came up the picked intro. An important skill to have as a session musician is creativity. The ability to create a great part will make you very valuable.

See the union contract here.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Monday, November 5, 2012

Friday, November 2, 2012

Free Staff Paper

Blogged a link about this Free Printable Staff Paper site a long time ago. TIme for a repost.

You can print staff paper, TAB paper, for guitar and bass and lot's of other combinations. You can also chose the number of staves per page. Really cool and useful. Bookmark it.

Monday, October 29, 2012

The Wrecking Crew - The Lonely Bull - Herb Alpert

This was a track recorded by the Wrecking Crew by Herb Alpert. When he did the session at Conway Recorders in Hollywood (where I record "Turn To You" with Justin Bieber) 50 years ago on this date, he didn't have a lot of money he paid the sessions musicians $15 each. A few months later when the song had become a big hit, Herb went to the union and paid the fines and paid the musicians full union wages.

Check out The Wrecking Crew.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

A Session From a Couple of Years Ago

For the Chilean artist Carlos Grilli...
I played all the guitars on this record.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Cool Site - Indie and Unsigned

Indie and Unsigned

Cool site to help you about the industry. Categories like - Gigging, How To, Interviews, Musician's Tools, Polls, Recording, Royalties and Survival.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Twitter as Tool

When Twitter came about I was like, "oh, great the next Myspace/Facebook/Linkedin... can't wait to sign up."

My Twitter.

Then I notice how much time all the record industry people spent on it. In the studio engineers, producers, artists, musicians were all "Tweeting" each other throughout the session. One inside joke after another for all the world to see. I didn't really feel like I was missing any fun, but because I wasn't on Twitter I wasn't able to be tagged as working with any of these amazing people. I was "connected" so to speak, but not so as anyone would know.

So I signed up. It was mildly entertaining to tell people that I was going to the store to get unsalted peanuts. And by "people" I mean my son and a couple people from church. I had less than 100 followers much less.

Being followed is half the equation. Following is the other part. When you follow someone; a friend, Beyonce, Barack Obama or even Fender Guitars, what ever they post appears on your tweet feed. In real time. But you can also go to their tweet list and see all of their tweets, retweets (tweeting someone else's tweet), instagram photos, links, etc. It's kind of like high tech stalking. Want to know what that big producer is up to? Follow him. It's legal. In fact he wants you to.

As you work with people, you follow them and they follow you. Remember to tweet them. Keep it fun. Upbeat. I avoid negativity and politics as a rule.

When Justin Bieber followed me I suddenly got 1200 followers in a 24 hour period. Then later that day I got called in to work with him on another song. It's turned out to be a pretty good tool to stay in touch with people I work with and want to work with.

You can check and see who some producers follow, maybe some up-and-comers, follow them, if they are artists check out their music. Comment on it. Remember be positive. A big time manager I know followed these producers in NYC and so I followed them too. Forgot about it for a while and one of their tweets appeared on my feed and retweeted and then they followed me. Soon we were working together. Me in LA, while they were in London. We've written several songs together.

It still remains to be seen if twitter is a good tool or not. But I think it just might be.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Stay put...

Want to get hit in paintball? Don't move.

What to get busier in the music business? Also don't move.

OK, first move to where you want to be in the biz.

Love Steve Gadd. Don't mind the cold. Have lot's of savings. Happy to use studio amps and sometime studio guitars. Maybe New York is for you.

Love Jeff Porcaro. Don't want to worry about a heat bill. Have some savings. Prefer to use your own gear. Maybe LA is for you.

Love Floyd Cramer. Don't mind developing a southern accent. Have a savings account. Have country chops. Maybe Nashville is for you.

Other towns that tend attract the best and brightest musicians, artists, writers and producers...

Atlanta - Big urban scene.
Miami - Big Latim Music scene.
Austin - Alt. Country and blues.
Chicago - Blues, rock and urban.
Seattle - Rock and arty.
Detroit - Motown.
Boston - Jazz and rock.

These are all generalities. I only really know anything about the LA scene. Do your own research. Having family and/or connections in your final destination doesn't hurt.

Check out the city or cities. Drive/fly there. You're more likely to make the move if you commit to a visit. Once I turned 21 I flew from Indianapolis to LA and stayed with friends of friends in Riverside. Not very close to LA. The reason I waited until I was 21 was so I could go to all the clubs, like the Baked Potato, and see/meet some amazing musicians. Spent an hour talking to Russell Ferrante, met and took a lesson with Carl Verheyen, saw Abraham Laborial, Richard Elliot, among others.

Find an area that you could live in long term. Visualize maybe marriage and kids. Still want to live there? You can always move, it's not a hard and fast rule, but every time you do it tends to cost you money and connections. Also when you stay put you tend to learn your way around. The shortcuts. The good deals. The best eateries.

Now that you've chosen your new home. Get a number. I originally had a 213 number when I moved to LA. Then it became 818. Then 626. Once cell phones came about I stuck with 626. It's Pasadena, where I am, and many points East. However, if I wanted to get producers, etc to think I was in the Record Capital of the World I could've gone with 213. 818 or 323. That's LA (Hollywood), the Valley and the Westside respectively. So chose your prefix carefully if you chose to change your number at all and then stick with it.

Also pick up a map of your chosen city and put it on your wall. Learn it. I did this before moving. Cities I'd never been to, Burbank, Pasadena, Malibu, Santa Monica, sounded familiar and I knew where they were.

We've been in the same place for 25(!) years and we love the area. Our kids were raised here. It's felt like home for a long time.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Electric Grooves Lesson 2



Get these down first...








And then get this one down....






A Recent Session

I did this one last week. It was fun to get the Beatle bass out, as well as the Epi Casino and my ol Gibson Folksinger to try to replicate the sounds and parts of the original.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Keep Your IMDB Up To Date

See mine here...

Tom Strahle's IMDB Page

Notice I don't just have music credits (scroll to the bottom of the page)

Monday, September 24, 2012

Here's a song I played on last year for the great singer from Ecuador Paulina Aguirre.


I played my 70's Martin D-35 and my Fender Strat through a Keeley compressor to get that slippery sound on the fills. Also did some Edge type dotted eighth delay at one point.



Sunday, September 23, 2012

Electric Grooves Lesson 1





The chord used is an Eb9 - x65666

The patterns...

< Just muted 16ths






The four patterns on the four different 16ths of each bar.



Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Jazz Soloing Tip #2b - The Blues




Here I talk about the use of Mixolydian Scales when playing in the blues.

The progression is a very simple, stripped down blues progression...

|A7|A7|A7|A7|

|D7|D7|A7|A7|

|E7|E7|A7|A7|

The scales used...

Over A7 - A Mixolydian - A B C# D E F# G A
Over D7 - D Mixolydian - D E F# G A B C D
Over E7 - E Mixolydian - E F# G# A B C# D E

To learn more about the Mixolydian scale watch these videos...

Intro to Modes- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jPPBzB2nvss
The Modes Formulas - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zCZs8f2CAwg
The C Mixolydian Mode - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fwiELB1N024

Monday, September 17, 2012

Jazz Soloing Tip #2a - The Blues




A simple alteration to your basic minor pentatonic scale can make your blues playing more interesting, nay, more "jazzy".

The progression is a very simple, stripped down blues progression...

|A7|A7|A7|A7|

|D7|D7|A7|A7|

|E7|E7|A7|A7|

The scales used...

Over A7 - A minor pentatonic - A C D E G
Over D7 - A minor sixth pentatonic - A C D E F#
Over E7 - E minor pentatonic - (E G) A B D E G

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Jazz Soloing Tip #1b




An addendum to the previous post.

Again the changes are...

|Fm7|Bbm7|Eb7|Abmaj7|
Ab-------------------------------

|Dbmaj7|G7#5b9|Cmaj7|Cmaj7|
(Ab)------Chm------C------------------

Voicings I used -
Fm7 - x81089x, Bbm7 - xx81099, Eb7 - x6868x, Abmaj7 - xx6888
Dbmaj7 - x4656x, G7#5b9 - xx3444, Cmaj7 - x3545x

Ab major - Ab Bb C Db Eb F G Ab
C major - C D E F G A B C
C Harmonic Minor - C D Eb F G Ab B C
(common tones - C, F & G)

A relative C scale to Ab major is C Phrygian.

C Phrygian - C Db Eb F G Ab Bb C

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Jazz Soloing Tip #1a



Here's a tip to help you navigate through chord progressions that change key.

The changes are...

Chords - |Fm7|Bbm7|Eb7|Abmaj7|
Key -     Ab----------------------------

|Dbmaj7|G7|Cmaj7|Cmaj7|
(Ab)------C-------------------

Voicings I used -
Fm7 - x81089x, Bbm7 - xx81099, Eb7 - x6868x, Abmaj7 - xx6888
Dbmaj7 - x4656x, G7 - xx5767, Cmaj7 - x3545x

Ab major - Ab Bb C Db Eb F G Ab
C major - C D E F G A B C
(common tones - C, F & G)

A relative C scale to Ab major is C Phrygian.

C Phrygian - C Db Eb F G Ab Bb C

Sunday, September 9, 2012

iChat as File Sharing Tool

A good file transferring system in paramount to being a session musician nowadays.

All Macs come with iChat and I've used it for years as a way to communicate with composers and collaborators as we are working. But to transfer files I use to use iDisk. But as of June of this year iDisk is no longer. I was bummed and I started using DropBox, which I love. But lately I've noticed that dropping into and through iChat has gotten much faster. And they are accepting much bigger files. It seemed to handle 20-40 mb files with ease. Other files transfer sites include...

Gobbler
Box.net
Yousendit

Friday, September 7, 2012

Is This Right?

Having a skill set in some form of chart preparation software like Finale or Sibelius can come in handy for many things but I learned this week it can be a help when trying to replicate a sampled guitar track.

I use finale every week to create hymn lead sheets from hymnals for the hymn service at my church, so my chops are fairly tight and ready to go. Recently I was working for a client who had sent me a track to play on. He sent me an mp3 of the track sans guitar plus a sample guitar mock up of what he wanted the guitar track to do.  The problem was that his samples had some strumming effect on them that made it pretty unclear as to what pattern he wanted me to play.

I didn't know how unclear it was until I sent him what I thought was a finished track and he informed me that it wasn't what he wanted. Usually we don't have a problem with my interpretation of his guitar parts, but in this case he was really married to the sample he sent me. Upon a closer I was even more confused. But I figured out the pattern. Or what I thought was the pattern. Opened up Finale. Created a mini chart. Took a screen shot of the chart (command-shift-4). And sent him the jpg through iChat. With the question, "Is this right?".

"Yes" he shot back immediately. I was tracking within seconds and had the files sent to him within the hour. Here's the chart I created on the fly...


Thursday, August 16, 2012

Learn New Styles - Brazilian

You can never have a basic knowledge of enough styles. Comes in handy for sessions or you can import ideas from other genres into your genres of choice to make yours more interesting and unique.

Loving this book....

The Brazilian Guitar Book




Saturday, August 11, 2012

Don't Just Listen to Guitar Music (part one)

This is a huge subject. In fact, I would suggest dedicating a year to not buying guitar CD's but recordings of other instruments. Sax, piano, trumpet, xylophone, zither. Part of what will make you stand out as a guitarists among other guitarists is if you don't sound like all the other guitarists. Great rhythm ideas can be found in trying to emulate piano players. Out of the box phrasing ideas can be found in transcribing sax solos.

Case in point, when I was in high school I spent hours and hours (and hours!) transcribing Charlie Parker solos off of LP's. A tedious undertaking of lifting the needle off the vinyl, writing down a note or two and then trying to get the needle back in the groove right before the next phrase. I'm sweating now just thinking about it. I didn't know about the Parker Omnibook, but a book of transcriptions wouldn't have provided the same intense lesson as creating a book of transcriptions.

Writing out sax solos worked my ear and my reading chops and saved me money on the book! I did however get one major thing wrong and that was tempos. I could fathom tempos of 280-320 so I wrote everything at half tempo and thus all the 16th and 32nd notes. See a page below...



I called it "The Parker Tomnibook."

I transcribed piano solos. Synth solos. Jean Luc Ponty and Stephane Grapelli violin solo. Any solo that moved me and made me think, "how did they do that?"

In order to understand how "they did that" it's also important to figure out the harmony, or chord progression. too. That way you can see the relationship between the phrases and the harmony so you can more easily replicate it yourself.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Reading in the Studio

Here's page one of a chart for a film. Now while it says "Gtr Part" it was really intended to be played down an octave and on baritone electric. I used my Danelectro for the job.

A couple issues.

One, I don't read for baritone very often. So I was kind of double transposing twice to play this chart. Down an octave and then up a fourth. Not really up a fourth, but for example that first note, D, is really the D an octave below that and on the baritone it is played on the 3rd fret of the sixth string. So kind of like a G note on a normal guitar.

There was a lot of baritone on this score so I was quickly able to get my head into the bari-game. Generally I think of that first note not as G but as D right where it is. Just as it is. And then I just read the intervals instead of the notes. So D, then two more D's, up a minor 3rd, up a whole step. Hit that again. This trick will get me through many tricky transposition situations.

The second issue was with the length of the neck. My left arm was getting tired. I don't know how bass players do it. I have no tip for this except play more baritone.
Here's a video on the subject...

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Just Amazing...


This version of Giant Steps as played by Kenny Garrett is humbling.

One takeaway? If you are a guitarist, don't just listen to guitarists.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Cool Tool - The Lap Steel - Part Two

Chord progression - C G D Em  Played -  
   C       G      D        Em
--5-------------------------------
--5---------------7--------------
----------12-----7--------9----
----------12---------------9----
----------------------------------
----------------------------------

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Cool Tool - The "African" Guitar



Bought a used Squier Tele for $119 and turned it into an "African" guitar. Same tuning, just put a skinny string (.009-.012) in place of the fourth string.

Tuning - E, A, D (up octave), G, B, E

Just the D string is changed.

Voicings played in the video...

xx5555 - Am7 (Ukulele tuning)
xx0212 - D7, xx4535 - D7, xx7778 - D7, xx10111010 - D7
x5423x - D, x10978 - G, x1211912x - A
xx0232 - D, xx0433 - G, xx0655 - A4

Monday, July 23, 2012

How I Played "Turn To You" by Justin Bieber

Here's the tune...
And here's the lesson...
..
Verse chords...
Capo 5th fret...
x24430 - Em4
x02200 - D2
Chorus chords (two takes of the Martin and two takes of the high-strung)
No capo
x35050 - C
x79080 - Em7
x35050 - C
x57070 - D2(add 4)
Bridge chords (no capo) - Am, Em, G, D/F#, Am, Em, G, D

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Playing the B Chord - Part Two

Some voicings used in the video...
x2440x - B5
x24400 - Bsus
x24440 - B4
x24402 - B5
79980x - B
799800 - B4
x99807 - B/F#
079900 - E5, x46600 - C#m7, x24400 - Bsus, x02200 - A2
Capo second fret and B is played as an A
Capo fourth fret and B is played as a G

Friday, July 20, 2012

Playing the Bb or B Chord - Part One



Practice alternating between Bb and bunches of other chords...

Bb F Bb C Bb Dm Bb Gm Bb E Bb G Bb D Bb A etc

 Practice alternating between B and bunches of other chords...

B E B F# B G#m B C#m B D#m B A B D B G B F B etc.

Monday, July 16, 2012

The Drop Two Chord - Lesson 32 (ii-V-I's)




ii-V-I chords starting with the root inversion Dm7 Drop 2 chord.

Some of the voicings from the video

x5756x - Dm7, x5546x - G7, x3545x - Cmaj7
x5656x - Dm7b5, x5546x - G7, x3545x - Cmaj7
x5656x - Dm7b5, x4546x - G7b5, x3545x - Cmaj7
x5656x - Dm7b5, x5646x - G7b9, x3545x - Cmaj7
x5656x - Dm7b5, x4646x - G7b5b9 (Db7), x3545x - Cmaj7
x5355x - Dm9, x5546x - G7, x3545x - Cmaj7
x5355x - Dm9, x5546x - G7, x3545x - Cmaj7
x5355x - Dm9, x4546x - G7b5, x3545x - Cmaj7
x5355x - Dm9, x5646x - G7b9, x3545x - Cmaj7
x5355x - Dm9, x4646x - G7b5b9 (Db7), x3545x - Cmaj7

My blog...
http://proguitarsecrets.blogspot.com/

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Cool Site - The Perfect Rhyme Site...

In fact it's called...

Perfect Rhyme

For you songwriter's out there. I was looking for a site that did soft rhymes, you know ones that are close enough. Really open up the options.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Playing the F Chord - Part Two



Some alternate shapes for the F chord...

xx3211- F, xx3213- F2, xx3210- Fmaj7, xx3010 - Fmaj9, xx3013- F2,  xx3011 - F2, x33211 - F/C, x03211 - F/A, x33011 - F2/C, x03011 - F2/A, x03010 - Fmaj9/A, x33010 - Fmaj9/C, x33210 - Fmaj7/C

Extra Credit -
133011 - F2 (no 3rd)

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Playing the F Chord - Part One

Practice alternating between F and bunches of other chords...
F C F G F A F E F D F G F E F A F D F etc
In the key of C (more likely neighboring chords) - 
F C F G F Am F Dm F Em F etc

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The Drop Two Chord - Lesson 31 (ii-V-I's)



ii-V-I chords starting with the 2nd inversion Gm7 Drop 2 chord.

Some of the voicings from the video

xx12121113 - Gm7, xx10121112 - C7, xx10101012 - Fmaj7
xx12121113 - Gm7, xx10121112 - C7, xx10101013 - F
xx12121113 - Gm7, xx12121112 - C9, xx10101012 - Fmaj7
xx12121112 - Gm6, xx10121112 - C7, xx10101012 - Fmaj7
xx12121113 - Gm7, xx10111112 - C7b5, xx10101012 - Fmaj7
xx12121113 - Gm7, xx10131112 - C7#5, xx10101012 - Fmaj7
xx11121113 - Gm7b5, xx10111112 - C7b5, xx10101012 - Fmaj7
xx11121113 - Gm7b5, xx10111112 - C7b5, xx10101012 - Fmaj7
xx11121113 - Gm7b5, xx11121112 - C7b9, xx10101012 - Fmaj7
xx13121113 - Gm7#5, xx11121112 - C7b9, xx10101012 - Fmaj7

Sunday, July 8, 2012

The Drop Two Chord - Lesson 30 (ii-V-I's)

ii-V-I chords starting with the 1st inversion Gm7 Drop 2 chord. Some of the voicings from the video xx810810 - Gm7, xx8988 - C7, xx7968 - Fmaj7 xx810810 - Gm7, xx8988 - C7, xx10101012 - Fmaj7 xx810810 - Gm7, xx10121112 - C7, xx10101012 - Fmaj7 xx810810 - Gm7, xx10121112 - C7, xx10101010 - F6 xx810810 - Gm7, xx8988 - C7, xx7768 - F6 xx81089 - Gm7b5, xx8988 - C7, xx7968 - Fmaj7 xx81089 - Gm7b5, xx8988 - C7, xx10101012 - Fmaj7 xx810810 - Gm7, xx8978 - C7b5, xx7968 or xx10101012 - Fmaj7 xx810810 - Gm7, xx89811 - C7#9, xx10101012 - Fmaj7 xx81089 - Gm7b5, xx89811 - C7#9, xx10101012 - Fmaj7 xx5666 - Gm7b5, xx8989 and xx11121112- C7b9, xx10101012 - Fmaj7  xx5666 - Gm7b5, xx8989 and xx11121112- C7b9, xx14141313 - Fmaj7  Not in the vid, just thought of it now...  xx810811 - Gm7#5, xx8989 - C7b9, xx7968 - Fmaj7

Saturday, July 7, 2012

The Guitar That Saved My Life



Do I have a tendency to overstate? I don't think so, maybe. But this guitar did indeed save my life. 

1974. When I was thirteen my world was rocked (non-musically) by the divorce of my parents. This announcement caught me totally off guard. My sisters were probably more attuned to tensions in the household and saw it coming, but not me. 

I had already been struggling with violent anger, depression and suicidal thoughts as a pre-teen. Teenage angst and a now uncertain future only amplified (pun not intended) these struggles.

Flash back a couple of months to my thirteenth birthday. My parents spent the heavenly sum of $300 for an Ibanez copy of a Gibson 175. This probably should've been my first clue of the impending announcement. The used Fender Mustang at the store had just sold. The Ibanez was my second choice. This was my first electric. 

I was getting serious about guitar. My father was thrilled by my new found interest in Wes Montgomery, Charlie Christian, Django Reinhardt and Jazz. For me guitar was a distraction and an identity. Perusing the notes in my Junior High yearbooks clearly shows my identity as "Tom the Guitar Player". That was great, but because this was Indiana and I wasn't "Tom the Basketball Star". I wasn't attaining the popularity that I craved. Being blind in one eye and thus having no depth perception made it difficult for me to sink simple 20-foot jump shots. I was known as "Air Strahle" as in air ball.

Enter Stan Walker. Star of the basketball team who befriended me. Not sure why. Maybe because his older brother was a musician too. Maybe because I was a charity case. Help the unpopular kid move up a notch or two. I didn't care why or mind. That is until he invited me to a Christian meeting. Ah, this is how it's going to be. A friendship with strings attached.

I was a declared atheist. "I don't believe in God. I believe in science." I would tell people. Though admittedly science didn't adequately answer all my questions. Like what's beyond the edges of the known universe? What number is bigger than infinity? What is time? 

I begrudgingly went with Stan to a Campus Crusade for Christ meeting for junior and senior high students. To my surprise there weren't hooded monks sacrificing goats and pigeons to appease God and atone for sins. Just a bunch of kids in jeans and puca shells singing "Kumbaya". Not exactly "Giant Steps" but the guy leading the songs was playing an actual Gibson 175. Not a fake like mine. Pretty cool.

There was a speaker that probably spoke about Jesus or something. I don't recall. The Gibson was sitting in a stand on stage the whole time. And there my focus lie. The recent college grad got up to lead one more song at the end of the meeting. Probably "Pass It On." (Not a reefer sharing reference mind you.) 

Afterwards I went up to the song-leader and asked if I could play his guitar. He probably didn't recall signing up for pimple faced punks playing his sweet guitar when he got into ministry but he relented. His worst fears were assuaged I'm sure when he saw how gingerly I handled his guitar. Like it was a Fabergé Egg. Then I played some Charlie Parker line or Wes Montgomery lick and he knew the guitar was in better hands. (His admission not mine.)

I guess I became a special ministry project of Paul's. He wanted to meet me after school and take me to McDonald's. This was long before Jeffrey Dahmer. But I was still a little weirded out and pretended to forget he was picking me up and caught the bus home instead. This happened twice before Paul successfully corralled me into a meal with an evangelistic message as dessert. Mmmm.

While sitting in a booth at the Nora McDonald's Paul told me about a God who was bigger than infinity, held the universe in His hand and started the clock and someday was going to stop the clock. Not sure if it was the smell of burning cow flesh or the truth he told me but it made sense. Somewhere between the fries and shake I gave my life to Jesus.

Flash forward 35 years. Paul is still on staff with Campus Crusade with kids in college, a home that needed repairs and ministry salary he called me and asked if I would be interested in buying (for a fair price) the guitar that his father gave his mother in the sixties. I gave him a more than a fair price because I wanted to keep the guitar in "the family". Besides it's the guitar that saved my life. In the picture above, my first electric (the Ibanez) and the Guitar That Saved My Life (the Gibson). The actual guitar. Thanks Paul.

Friday, July 6, 2012

The Drop Two Chord - Lesson 29 (ii-V-I's)



ii-V-I chords starting with the root inversion Gm7 Drop 2 chord.

Some of the voicings from the video

xx5766 - Gm7, xx5556 - C7, xx3555 - Fmaj7
xx5766 - Gm7, xx5556 - C7, xx7968 - Fmaj7
xx5766 - Gm7, xx8988 - C7, xx7968 - Fmaj7
xx5766 - Gm7, xx8988 - C7, xx10101012 - Fmaj7
xx5766 - Gm7, xx8978 - C7b5, xx7968 - Fmaj7
xx5766 - Gm7, xx4556 - C7b5, xx3555 - Fmaj7
xx5766 - Gm7, xx2314 - C7#5, xx7968 - Fmaj7
xx5666 - Gm7b5, xx4556 - C7b5, xx3555 - Fmaj7
xx5666 - Gm7b5, xx4556 - C7b5, xx7968 - Fmaj7
xx5666 - Gm7b5, xx5656 - C7b9, xx7968 - Fmaj7
xx5666 - Gm7b5, xx5656 and xx8989 - C7b9, xx7968 - Fmaj7
xx5666 - Gm7b5, xx5656 and xx8989 - C7b9, xx10101012 - Fmaj7

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Cool Tool - Jerry Jones Electric Sitar

Jerry Jones doesn't make guitars anymore. Bummer. Rogue doesn't seem to be making them either. Must not have been a big seller. Check eBay.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

The Drop Two Chord - Lesson 28 (ii-V-I's)



ii-V-I chords starting with the 3rd inversion Gm7 Drop 2 chord.

Some of the ones from the video

xx3333 - Gm7, xx2313 - C7, xx2211 - Fmaj7
xx3333 - Gm7, xx2313 - C7, xx3555 - Fmaj7
xx3333 - Gm7, xx5556 - C7, xx3555 - Fmaj7
xx3335 - Gm9, xx2313 - C7, xx2211 - Fmaj7
xx3335 - Gm9, xx2313 - C7, xx3555 - Fmaj7
xx3333 - Gm7, xx2314 - C7#5, xx3555 - Fmaj7
xx3335 - Gm9, xx2314 - C7#5, xx3555 - Fmaj7
xx3323 - Gm7b5, xx2314 - C7#5, xx3555 - Fmaj7
xx3333 - Gm7, xx2333 - C9, xx2211 - Fmaj7
xx3333 - Gm7, xx2333 - C9, xx3555 - Fmaj7
xx3335 - Gm9, xx2335 - C13, xx3555 - Fmaj7
xx3335 - Gm9, xx2325 - C13b9, xx3555 - Fmaj7

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Giant Steps Harmonized for Solo Guitar



Using mostly Drop 2 chords and some Drop 3 chords. Basically just voiced the chords with the melody on top. Simple as that. Click on chart to see it bigger.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Recent R&B Session...

Some of the guitars were my $99 Squire...


And beware, I just picked up an $89 used Squire, it's already appearing on some tracks.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Cool Site - Flatpick Apprentice

This guy is "sharing my efforts to attain flatpick guitar competency" on this cool site with pdf's and rhythm mp3's at different tempos.

Flatpickapprentice

Print the pdf's if for no other reason than for sight-reading practice (and pick up some bluegrass licks along the way.)