Monday, April 20, 2009

New String Day

I have been playing the guitar
now for a little
over four years.
You don't know how good it
feels to be able to say that,
(or maybe you do!)
at this point in time I don't
know that
there are many
of us that have taken up
trying to
learn this instrument so late in life. As I state in any legit BIO that I post in any notable location on-line, I consider myself a student of the guitar, even though I have pretty much abandoned formal lessons (the kind where you shell-out $15.00 for a 30 minute weekly session) for quite some time now. Doing so was an economic reality more than anything else. In addition to the obvious level of personal enjoyment and satisfaction that comes with playing LIVE in the living room each evening, I seem to gain just as much enjoyment with a simple 2 hour visit to the guitar store Yes, two a minimum! Actually, it's more like a 4 hour commitment to do so. My favorite guitar store is an hour away, just over the Mississippi in La Crosse, WI. It's the only place I know where I can go and literally play with instruments that I truly cannot afford. Even if I was NOT unemployed, for there is always a budget to contend with, OR, a realization that a person just cannot have everything, even if I could afford it. But that's OK.......

Currently I own two acoustic guitars. A Taylor 214 Grand Auditorium, which was my 'beginner guitar', and currently, my 'thinking guitar' (one I have sitting around, just in case I have an idea for a song). The Taylor was bought new. I also own a McPherson acoustic. I could do an entire (or several) blog entries on it alone, so I will not get into a lot of detail about 'Maggie', other than she is like a Grand Piano in a carrying case. Speaking of case, I could do an entire blog story on Maggie's case ! I also own an A-style (pear-shaped) mandolin, and a 6-string banjo (or banjitar-tuned like a guitar). The banjo-guitar combo and mandolin were purchased as pre-owned from the original owner.
Based on the above list it
would seem like there
no reason to make
trips to the
guitar store.

That's where G.A.S.
comes into play.
G.A.S. = Gear Aquisition Syndrome.
This too, a topic I will elaborate on

during future blog entries.

Today I will change strings on the Taylor 214. The set that is
currently on there has
probably been on there for at least
four months, which is
way beyond the usual cycle.
Unemployment has put me in that position of having to
stretch every note and chord
out of every set. Maybe that's
good, but mostly, it's sad!
But, what trumps it all is that first song after the guitar is strung,
tuned, and warmed-up and ready to go. For me, it's impossible to
describe the warmth and feeling of those first notes & chords.
The fullness, the warmth, the pristine highs, and the ballsy lows.
Typically the first few songs raise goosebumps on my own arms.
My hope is that it would do the same for you!

It's new string's gonna be a great day!



  1. Found you on Blip. I love that you've learned to play an instrument "so late in life" as you put it. I have my kids in Suzuki violin lessons and have thought that I'd love to learn to play an instrument, then I talk myself out of it, lol! Enjoy!

  2. knew this was coming! ~smile~

    "If I can do it......YOU can do it"!
    (trust me)