Only about 14Gb, but then I'm pretty pedantic about deleting stuff I never listen to, or don't actually like.


(1 replies, posted in Songwriting)

My daughter has been playing in a band for over a year now, and is doing some great stuff.  She mainly plays the acoustic, but does her bit on keyboards too.

She's now getting into writing her own songs and has come up couple of crackers.  Of course I'm her Dad, so I would think this anyway.

What's the score (ha, pun intended?) with making sure that she keeps the copyright?  I know this seems a little OTT, but they are starting to get quite a rep around the area, and now have their first paid gig coming up.  You never know...


(8 replies, posted in Electric)


Can anybody recommend a good teach yourself DVD based guitar course, focussed on Electric, possibly with the emphasis on technique.

I work away from home a lot, on a ship, and our internet connection is just too slow for any online based lessons.  With a DVD and some books I'd be able to get along better in the quiet of my cabin.

I know that the Jamplay stuff is good, but for me the need to be online totally negates this (or similar) options.

So, if anyone could suggest a good course for someone who is not a complete beginner that would be great.  I've been playing for years, but never had a single formal lesson, so no doubt I'm doing a lot of stuff wrong.

Likewise, anything that I should avoid??



(231 replies, posted in Chordie's Chat Corner)

I've already put this up on the Chilean Miner thread, but what the heck...

I bought a bottle of Chilean wine to celebrate the rescue of the miners, but it's taken me 69 days to open it, and even then I had to pull the cork in and out 33 times!

On Extended Wings - Diane Ackerman.  Utterly brilliant recounting of Diane's experiences when learning to fly light aircraft.  I have read and re-read it many times.  An inspiring book that helps me through any rough patch in my life.


(14 replies, posted in Chordie's Chat Corner)

I bought a bottle of Cilean wine to celebrate the rescue of the miners, but it's taken me 69 days to open it, and even then I had to take the cork in and out 33 times!


(7 replies, posted in Guitars and accessories)

I've got the classic rock, and it sounds great.  But I found that the pots have got quite rough, and getting smooth tones is a bit tricky.

I've also got a Pocket POD, and despite being a bit hungry on the batteries, and a lot bigger is a lot more fun and useful.


(10 replies, posted in Electric)

Optima gold plated are the way to go.  Sound great and do not rust, ever.  I too get sweaty palms, and to top that bring my guitar to work, which is a ship, so that nice salty environment is fairly grim on regular strings.

They also do Chrome plated.  Which have a brighter sound, but I prefer the golds.

I don't know where you can get them from in the states and canada, but over here I get mine from



(231 replies, posted in Chordie's Chat Corner)

Two pieces of string walk into a bar
Bartender tells them to get out, we don't serve string in here
Once outside one piece of string tangles himself all up,
then scuffs about the pavement getting all tatty and hairy
'What are you doing?' asks the other string, 'Going back in' is the reply
'You look familiar', says the bartender 'Ain't you that piece of string?'
String replies 'No, I'm a frayed knot'


(231 replies, posted in Chordie's Chat Corner)

Old Hobo walks into a bar and asks the bar tender
'If I show you something amazing, can I get a drink?'
'Have to be pretty special' says bar tender
'OK' says tramp and takes out of his coat a very small grand piano.
'Well, it's pretty, but not special enough for free beer' says bartender
'OK' says Hobo, and takes out a hamster, who is wearing a full bow-tie and tails.
'Wow' says bar tender, who is then further amazed as the Hamsters start a recital of beautiful piano concertos
'Now that is worth free beer' says bartender, hobo smiles.
He then produces a large toad, dressed in a huge ball-gown.
Toad begins to sing opera along with the hamster on the piano
'Now that's free beer all night'
When  the tramp is very drunk, a man comes to him and offers to buy the duo.
Hobo says that he will sell the toad for $1000, which the man promptly pays, snatches up the toad and leaves the bar.
Bartender, now stunned into amazement, says 'Are you mad!! you could have sold these two for millions, or had them performing, earning thousands of dollars a night!!'
'It's alright'  says the hobo 'It's the hamster, he's a ventriloquist'

Hofner Shorty, played with a L6 pocket pod.  Perfect for my travelling ways.
The Ibanez M310 acoustic has to stay at home.

Matt the sailor


(38 replies, posted in

Is the jamplay content available offline?

I ask because I am a seaman and accessing the net from the ship is a very slow affair.  If I could download various lessons while at home and then take them with me would be great.

I read a lot of good stuff abput jamplay, and the freebie lessons are a neat way to learn some new songs.

If i had the courses with me at work, i'd be able to practice enough so that Mrs Matt wouldn't complain about me playing at home!

In my limited experience, a good brand and second hand will see you right.

Get friendly with the local guitar shop and ask them to let you know of any they get in on part-ex, you could get very lucky and pick up a lovely bargain which they don't want hanging around.

As there isn't too much you can do to improve an acoustic, as regards to a set-up (unlike a solid body electric), buying quality really counts.


(4 replies, posted in Electric)

I hope I describe this right...

Move the strap button on the bottom of the body from the end of the body to a spot on the back of the body. about 1/4 of the way in from the end.

Looks a bit odd, and you'll need to get it recessed for comforts sake.  This allows the end of the body to counter balance the neck better.  So instead of battling to have the neck held up, the body pulls itself down.  It's all about the center of gravity of the guitar. which is naturally about a point roughly 2/3s of the way from the end of the body.  Find where this is by placing the guitar on a table with a pencil, or something similar, lying down (!) underneath it and see where it just about balances.  The strap buttons should be equidistant from this point.

You may find this alters your hand position, but you will quickly adapt to it.


I'd spoiled for choice!  This was something along the lines that I was thinking. 

Anybody know what brands who be a good choice?

Budget is a consideration, but that can always be negotiated with Mrs Matt.


I play a Hofner Shorty travel guitar most of the time.  It currently has a reasonable sounding no-name bridge humbucker fitted.

I'd like to swap it to something a bit better, and at the same time add a neck pickup.  I'll get the work done by someone who knows what they are doing!

I play rock of all types, and bits of blues/folk, so I'm looking for a set up that gives a well rounded range of tone.

Any advice tips tricks or ideas?  And what about pitfalls and pootraps that I may drop into?



My strings of choice are Optima gold-plated.  The sound stays great for a darn sight longer than regular strings, intonation is better, and they are certainly well worth the money.

I'm a seaman and take my Hofner Shorty with me onboard.  Regular strings degrade remarkably quickly on the ship, I think it's down to the salt in the environment and what inevitably builds up on my hands.  The Optimas do cost 2-3 times the price of good quality strings, but find I can get at least 4-5 times the life out of them.

Optima do chrome plated too, a bit cheaper, but I like the sound of the gold a little more,  or, if you're bothered about look and don't want gold strings on chrome hardware (does make you look like you've put acoustic wound strings on your electric!).

I'm not sure where to get them from in the US, but is who I get them from here in the UK.

Even the cheap ones can be made to play as nicely as the expensive ones if you get it fettled by a good luthier.  And replace the awful machine heads that seem to infect the cheapies...

It may be a small and cheap, or large and expensive.  What piece of guitar related gear is an essential for you?

My Line 6 pocket pod has just replaced my Vox Amplug.  Can't live without some sort of headphone amp.


(275 replies, posted in Electric)

Cripes, 40, going on 14....  According to my wife.

dino48 wrote:

You can always tell your spouse you want too get a set of drums. most will be happy to let you get a guitar.

This has to be a winner....

I've yet to find a successful and dignified way of getting approval to buy something guitar related.  Even new strings are frowned upon. 

I  can normally get by with the 'I hardly ever spend any money just for me'.  My bike?  no problem - tires, brake pads, new helmet, that's a safety thing.  New running shoes, that's a health thing. 

But guitar? "Why" is normally all I get in response to my pleading.  Eventually she backs down though, but it does take a lot of time and commitment.


(17 replies, posted in Guitars and accessories)

I have an aged Boss GL100 twin channel pre-amp.  Strapped to the top of an equalled aged Fender Switcher Reverb, 30W.  And I have a Pocket POD.  All in all the distortion options on the GL100 are easy to use, with the foot swich wired through to an extra button on the Switcher foot switch I can blip from silky clean to earwax removal.  And they all sound good to me.

Now, the POD, simply brilliant.  I'd never use it live, too fiddly, but when away from home it's a whole world of sounds in an easily portable format.  Coupled with my Hofner Shorty I'm never, er short?, of a decent set of sounds to practice/experiment with.  The distrtion sounds are not as good as on the amp/pre-amp set up, but it's only me listening to them anyway!

Each has there own merits, and once you are settled with a piece of kit, stick with it.


You are mint.

Thanks massively, now I know, and can join in the 21st century!

Anyway here's the Shorty with it's Vox Amplug and headphones, the only way I can play and don't end up walking the plank!



Despite trying my level best I can't get the photos to appear!!  I've uploaded the photos to Flikr, and tried the [img]...[/img] tag thing, but still no luck!!!