In this blog post, I'd like to pose the question: Can you handle the stresses of session playing? Every day I awake to a new set of musical challenges. These must be met along with our regular, everyday personal needs. Here's an example: Today I have four sessions to work on, a blog to write (this one) and a phone meeting about composing music for a new reality show.
Hey, this is Gabe from Reggae Guitar Lessons. Here's a beginner lesson on a few basic reggae guitar strumming patterns. The video lesson covers how I learned to play reggae guitar in New York City, then gets into right-hand and left-hand technique and some strumming exercises in 4/4 time.
Yesterday was a special day for the United States, and for me personally. I just voted for the first time in the presidential election. As I was voting, I thought about each candidate's campaign and couldn't help but think about the similarities between running for office and releasing music as an independent artist. Whether you're running for office or releasing your own music, it all comes down to self-promotion.
Have you ever played a gig during which your gear inexplicably goes dead in the middle of a face-blistering lead? Have you ever been on your way to a show and have the back of the van pop open and watch a drum set and keyboard spill onto the New York State Thruway at 70 mph? Have you ever watched the singer in your band run a bar tab so high that it exceeded what your band was supposed to make that night?
As I was learning and discovering the guitar, the pentatonic scale was the tonality I could most relate to. It's no great secret that most blues and rock solos are based around this scale, but I really had to discover this for myself through years of hard work and practice. It's easy to be told or read what to do, but it's practice alone that will give you the ultimate understanding.
When learning how to play jazz guitar chords, one of the first voicings many of us explore are three- and four-note 4th chords. Built by stacking 4th intervals, these chords have a modern, “open” sound that has been a favorite of players such as Lenny Breau, Mike Stern and Kurt Rosenwinkel, helping to define their chordal approach to jazz comping and chord soloing.
With a majority of today’s songwriters having powerful recording tools at their disposal, just a laptop’s click away, and the line between home and studio recordings blurring daily, writers/artists are now finding themselves, more and more, in the role of de facto producer when looking to capture their latest creations.
This month, I'd like to talk about a cool, useful technique I sometimes use called “double picking,” which involves repeating each note in a melody twice using alternate (down-up) picking. A good example of this technique can be found in the first solo I play in “An Infinite Regression,” from Animals as Leaders’ latest release, Weightless.
Take heart, lonely grandmothers. Quebec-based indie rockers Les Trois Accords have plenty of hugs 'n' kisses to go around. They've even named their new album J'aime ta grand-mère (I love your grandmother). "I think we'll open a door for every grandmother who doesn't have a husband anymore so they can find love with a younger person," says lead guitarist Alexandre Parr. "But not grandfathers. Only grandmothers."