Archive for January, 2009

Holdsworth quote from the DVD booklet

Posted in Guitar General, Guitar Playing, improvisation on January 30, 2009 by Staff Writer

 

“I cannot tell you anything I think or do is right, wrong or has any real value at all. I do not think of myself as a teacher by any stretch of the imagination. However, the way I taught myself has somehow worked for me. The main reason for this is, that when you find something out for yourself, it is understood on a deeper level than handed-down information; at least it was for me. Anyway, enough of that.” – Allan Holdsworth

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Allan Holdsworth (bona fide genius) DVD

Posted in Guitar Playing, Jazz Guitar, Shred Guitar on January 30, 2009 by Staff Writer

 

This guy arrived in the mail yesterday from Amazon U.S.  The first thing my two year old baby boy did was to tread on the box and break it.

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It’s a DVD repro of the original which was released on VHS video in 1992. I have that video knocking somewhere about in my parents’ house, but no VCR on which to play it

Anyway, the DVD contains many performances of Allan with his band at the time (Chad Wackerman, Skuli Sverison and Steve ‘mullet’ Hunt) all jamming away with clear close-ups of Allan’s amazing playing and technique which are sharp enough to be able to discern some of what he is playing. The rest of the content in the main feature consists of Allan talking to the camera about how he thinks and feels about music, ten of the most useful scales that he uses, how he derives and thinks about chords from scales, his approach to legato playing and how he approaches improvising, all delivered in his humble-as-pie and slightly eccentric Yorkshire demeanour that I, as a Brit expat find very very funny.   The DVD also contains an iPod ready version of the video (so I can watch him shred on the bus) as well as PDFs of the transcriptions (which suck and don’t take into account Allan’s fingerings at all) as well as all the scales and examples; watch me deplete the toner on the office printer printing out this bad boy at lunchtime….

Coming back to watching the whole thing after so long is refreshing. My appreciation for what he is talking about is much greater now that 15 years of advancement on my behalf have intervened and I now think I can usefully take away gems from his approach and incorporate them (note: not ‘copy’) into my own.

Something Allan repeats in the video is that he has always strived to ‘work it out for himself’ and that viewers should try to do the same. Doing this will imbue the musician with their own personalities (I infer this) as well as give them a very deep understanding of the material that will take them so much further than just copping licks or copying parrot fashion; words I live by now as much as possible (though there is always that fatal attraction to grabbing a tab and spending 2 hours trying to play Scarified!).

Anyway, here’s a copyright-smashing YouTube clip that cops directly from the video. Check out Steve Hunt’s (keyboards) mullet!

Fund raising for Mesa Mk V (as of Jan 28)

Posted in Guitar Gear on January 28, 2009 by Staff Writer

 

Target: $3000 SGD

Raised: $555 SGD

 

Jan 18: Sold Catalinbread Serrano Picoso – $135

Jan 18: Sold TC Nova Delay – $350

Jan 21: sold Vox 847 Wah – $70

Bumblefoot doing an awesome job of promoting Vigier guitars…

Posted in Guitar Gear on January 22, 2009 by Staff Writer

 

Here he is at NAMM 09 expounding on the virtues of his new Signature Model.

“It’s a guitar. Who gives a fuck, man… it’s just another fucking guitar. If you like it, you know, use it. If you don’t, use something else. It’s all the same shit, it’s just fucking strings, it’s wood, fuck it, I don’t give a fuck man, it’s just a guitar. Whatever.”

Fund raising for Mesa Mk V (as of Jan 19)

Posted in Uncategorized on January 19, 2009 by Staff Writer

Target: $3000 SGD

Raised: $485 SGD

 

Jan 18: Sold Catalinbread Serrano Picoso – $135

Jan 18: Sold TC Nova Delay – $350

You Stole The Sun From My Heart

Posted in Uncategorized on January 19, 2009 by Staff Writer

According to this month’s Guitarist magazine, Richey Edwards of the Manic Street Preachers was recently legally pronounced dead, 13 years after his disappearance.  A quick search of the Net and I found that the Guardian reported his obituary in November last year. Nice one Guitarist – bang up to date!

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Anyway, here’s the song that James Dean Bradfield wrote about (and for) him a few years after he went missing, with its poignant lyrics below. My favorite Manics song.

Drinking – water to stay thin
Or is it to purify
I love you all the same
But there’s no – no real truce with my fury
You don’t have to believe me
I love you all the same
But you stole the sun from my heart
You stole the sun from my heart
You stole the sun from my heart
You stole the sun from
You stole the sun from
You have – broken through my armour
And I don’t have an answer
I love you all the same
I paint – the things I want to see
But it don’t come easy
I love you all the same
But you stole the sun from my heart
You stole the sun from my heart
You stole the sun from my heart
You stole the sun from
You stole the sun from
Think I’m – I’m lost among the undergrowth
So much so I woke up
I love you all the same
But you stole the sun from my heart
You stole the sun from my
You stole the sun from my heart
You stole the sun from
You stole the sun from
I have – I’ve got to stop smiling
It gives the wrong impression
I love you all the same

Noodling on Lapstick

Posted in Guitar Playing, Shred Guitar on January 17, 2009 by Staff Writer

Here’s a short clip of me just playing random stuff on my Lapstick. I must say I really love this guitar, especially given that it has a short scale which suits my lil’ ol hands well.