Tuesday, January 30, 2007

The Solution to Stage Fright

...was discovered simultaneously last night by myself and a friend. He has recently taken over the sound at the TCAN open mike, so he has to get there early on Monday nights. Since we were hanging out before hand, I went early too, to help him set up. We were running around like crazy trying to find where the right cables live, get everything set up and sound-checked, and just right before people got there. As a result, we literally had no time to worry about our performances (we both played acoustic instrumentals at the open mike)! It was one of the best performance experiences yet! I played Frenzy at the Feeder - good groove, not too fast. There were a couple of fudged phrases, but they were lack of practice, not nervousness.

So I will have to try to get to open mike really early all the time and help set up!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Saturday morning - On Wednesday, I listened to a very good radio interview with Michael Millard of Froggy Bottom Guitars. What a cool guy! Of course it is pretty cool already that he makes superb guitars and lives in VT, but there is much that one would do well to imitate in his personal philosophy towards craftsmanship, service, and life.

Wed, Thur, Fri all very good practice days. Fun, anyhow - it is going to be hard to buckle down at this point and really polish Merrily/Cunla and Murtach. But it is also important to have fun playing (what is the point, otherwise, really?) even if a tune is not 100% perfect yet.

I am going to get some electonics put in the new guitar very soon hopefully (maybe even this afternoon). After that, perhaps I will start going to the TCAN open mic again - I have realized the importance of choosing the right venues to play at. I really wish I didn't have a conflict now with the ATAC open mic on Thursdays. It is by far my favorite place to play, and I miss very much going there.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Saturday morning - pancakes bacon and coffee springboard me into ~70 mins of practice. Restrung the Bourgeois (I've been playing the Froggy almost exclusively since November) and played it in DADGAD. First 20 - execises, mostly right-hand arpeggio patterns, but some harpisant scales (F major). Practiced Merrily Kissed the Quaker/Cunla and Murtagh MacKhan for ~45 min. Made progress in both.

Spoke on the phone the other night with a friend who is (I think) an audio engineer by trade, and an accomplished woodworker to boot. He is trying his hand at building a few guitars. He was getting ready to cut the top of the first one when he called, and wanted to talk about my experience and preferences in guitars to get a player's perspective before starting. He has researched the topic of guitar building quite extensively and has taught me several interesting things in the process. This first guitar design is based on a Taylor 814ce. I am really looking forward to seeing the end result!

I am conspiring with another audio engineer friend to record a couple videos of my playing for posting on Youtube. I'll be sure to embed them here when they are ready.