In the never ending cycle of Gear Acquisition, only one thing is certain: that the gear that you currently have is never enough. One constantly strives to acquire more gear in order to improve the situation only to find that like a hard drug, this new gear opens your eyes up to the possibilities that can be attained by going to that next level – browsing The Web, flipping through the review pages and Buyer’s Guides (ogling the Playboy chicks along the way) and generally getting a big stiffy over something as simple as a new bit of cable with some marginally different shielding that the marketeers are trumpeting as The Next Big Thing.
One way to avoid GAS is to avoid GASeous stimulation altogether. Stay far away from other people who play; never read the magazines and never surf the Web sites or frequent the forums for it is in these quarters where financial ruin lies. Close all channels and remain blissfully unaware in your closed-doored bedroom as you plink away on your woefully inadequate Paul Reed Smith Private Stock with All The Trimmings through that poorly underpowered mere tube amp and saving tonnes of money.
It is at this that I fail.
Having a guitar teacher with shit loads of stuff doesn’t help. Only last week, I struggled through a simple tune in a single key with only two chords for the pure and simple reason that when I arrived, he was playing through a goddamn frickin’ Roland Guitar synth with a custom built nylon string with midi-controller built in. How was I to maintain concentration on the improvisational task at hand with that thing looking up at me throughout the session?
And so it continues. Today I am exploring buying a GR-20 and possibly a Roland Ready Stratocaster (the Ritchie Blackmore Strat is seriously ugly without a middle pickup) or a Brian Moore iGuitar. Yup – you guessed it; with exposure of mere seconds to it, I have now convinced myself that I need a synth. After all, what guitarist *doesn’t* need to play a flute part?
Will I ever learn?