I often get asked about what gear I use in the studio. I have addressed this topic in my column in the past. However, a new guitar has been added to the bunch, Combined with my somewhat-new Line 6 Pod HD500 multi-effects processor, it has made my studio life happier than ever! I'm talking about the Line 6 JTV-89 modeling guitar combined with the HD500.
First you will need a time machine! The days of running from studio to studio and doing sessions are not completely over, but they are in the rear-view mirror. And getting further behind. Sure there are guys who still do it, but it is a job that no longer really exists and is as probable to create as becoming a very famous rock star. Fuhgedaboudit!
As a session guy, I never really know what to expect. I have to be prepared to play as many styles as possible. And this week I will definitely have to call upon my experience to make this happen! Here are my thoughts on gear and how to tackle this week in heaven or hell! We'll have to wait and see how it turns out!
Greetings! This week, I pose a question: Who are your favorite guitarists? It's a tricky subject, but since this is a session guitarist blog, and so many people ask me questions about what they need to do, know and own to become a session guitarist, I'm going out on a dangerous limb here. Hopefully, I will not be misunderstood.
This week, I'd like to speak a bit on how we can maintain a sense of self while fulfilling the constant need to make others happy. Every day, I am asked to impersonate another guitarist. This is not as difficult as it sounds. I only have to do it for a few brief measures. However, this daily job requirement can often confuse the session player when it comes time to showcase who you really are. We are not a normal breed.
I like to create templates to make work flow as easy and creative as possible! If you are not familiar with the term, the online dictionary offers this definition: "A document or file having a preset format, used as a starting point for a particular application so that the format does not have to be recreated each time it is used."
We all strive to play our best. In my particular line of studio work, I am called upon to improvise in many styles daily; sometimes many styles in the same song. This particular song was going to be trouble. I knew it. The engineer who sent it to me knew it, and the artist had suspicions. Here's how it went down.
Years ago, when I was just beginning to think I could be a guitarist, I decided to take lessons from the best I could find. Some known, most not so much. But all great players. I concentrated my efforts on jazz because I figured if I could get a handle on the intricacies of jazz improvisation, soloing on pop rock and blues would be infinitely easier.
Mae West said something like, "Too much of a good thing is wonderful!" As much as I somewhat agree, sometimes having "less is more" as my mantra does more to make me feel alive and creative! Let's look at a few ideas. I'd deeply appreciate you giving them a shot. You may learn a bit about yourself. And as an added bonus, your recordings, performance and overall sound will improve. I promise.
Take a look around. Your "studio"/ workplace is probably in a room in your house. Box 1. Your literal vision/optics are being viewed on a screen from a computer. Box 2. You may even look at your musical knowledge and improvisational skills based around the box method. Scale patterns. Theory. Rules. Limitations. Box 3.