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

From the Willie Nelson song "Gotta Get Drunk"
There's a lot of doctor's tell me that I'd better start slowing it down, but there's more old drunks than there are old doctor's so I guess we'd better have another round.


Time to take the bull by the tail, and look the situation in the face.
(couldn't resist, it's the Texas in me.)


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

Blowin in the Wind


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

BB King's guitar will go to his museum in his hometown in Mississippi.


(29 replies, posted in Acoustic)

Hey Z,
  Some songs are called easy becasue the chords themselves are not difficult, and the chord progressions seem easy. That is not necessarily so! To use your two examples, Harry Chapin was known for his heavy use of orchestration. Try that on an acoustic-BLAH! Bad moon rising has simple chords, but rapid chord changes, which does not really make it a beginner song. And as was mentioned, somtimes a backing band drowns out the acoustic all togetehr. On many of George Strait's songs (he plays rhythm), you can't even hear his playing for the band and the lead guitar. I know I found many of Bob Dylan's songs in beginner books. Sure the chords are easy, but he has a tendency to change strum patterns, and even change the key he is singing in. Again deceptively simple. Learn at your own pace, this isn't NASCAR. There are literally thousands of two and three chord songs, don't give up, you'll find some you like. May not sound like the Moody Blues, but as Ricky Nelson sang, you can't please everyone, so you got to please yourself.


(29 replies, posted in Acoustic)

There is an old saying, "Great music comes from the fingers, not the instrument." Getting a new guitar is always fun, but not essential, unless you have a badly damaged guitar, or one made of cardboard. If you listen to some of the old masters such as Django Reinhardt the jazz musician, Bo Didley with his cigar box guitar, Blind Lemon Jefferson, and others, you will realize, the chops are what count. If a new guitar will keep you playing, however, do it whenever you like. You can't put a timeline on when the time is right. Also, your goals may be different from someone else's. Like so many other things involved in music, you must follow your heart, (and your wallet).


The technique Manson used was not really hypnotism. It has been used frequently, and successfully by many cult "leaders" from Jim Jones, to David Koresh. Basically the head of the cult isolates his followers from any outside influences (i.e.) family, friends, television, radio, t.v. etc. They then spend hour upon hour indoctrinating the followers with their beliefs. Harsh punishment is meted out to those who disagree with the program. In the case of Manson, he also used mind altering substances, to speed the process along. After a short period of time, the followers cannot conceive of an existence without the cult "family". They disassociate with their past, and all that the past includes. Leaving a cult is difficult, and often cannot be done without the use of a deprogrammer. Hypnotism, does have some therapeutic uses, and I am suer Dr. Phil, has seen great success with its use. However it should not be confused with what that monster Manson, used.


(35 replies, posted in Acoustic)

Hello Seersha,
     Desire, and never giving up, or giving in is the important part of learning. Everyone has to work hard at being proficient at the guitar. As the proverb says, " a trip of a thousand miles, begins with a single step." You've probably heard the story of Eric Clapton, locking himself in a room for a year, to better his guitar playing. This was AFTER he was already famous! George Harrison, played over and over until his hands bled. No one is suggesting you do the same. The point is, what is often taken for musical genius, is nothing more than much hard work, coupled with desire. You will learn much from Chordie, most importantly, that the people here care about each other. The only criticism I have ever read, is when someone uses self-depricating humor. Know that we are here for each other, and will help in whatever way we can. Come to think of it, that sounds like a Christian concept to me.

The only advice I would give you, is to start slowly, at your own pace, and be patient. Playing music is a skill, that requires repetition. Golfers swing clubs, batters swing bats, we swing guitars...oops I mean we practice scales and chords. No magic here, just the love of what we are doing. Sorry this is not technical advice, maybe in a later post.

Good luck and Godspeed,


(4 replies, posted in Acoustic)

All thanKS TO YOU ZURFSTER! Your insights with their humor, grace, and knowledge are priceless! Oh and I did I mention knowledge and experience? Now before I nominate you for Chordian of the year, you better keep practicing those barre chords. smile



(9 replies, posted in Acoustic)

Hello Z,
     The learning curve is not a straight line for most of us. When you are learning a song, you may play it a hundred times or more, and feel you are getting nowhere. Then suddenly, seemingly out of the blue you are playing it like you've played it all your life. If you like playing guitar, never give up. If you like the songs you are learning never give up. And if you have questions or are discouraged turn to your fellow chordians. We are here for you!


(12 replies, posted in Acoustic)

I've seen dfifferent formats. Some bars have a form of Karaoke (sp) almost, where true beginners get up with their instruments and give it their best shot. Lots of fun, but not for the thin skinned or weak of heart who are going to get crushed by criticism. In Austin, TX I've seen true professionals try out new material, and only and idiot, would try to talk over them. The norm however, is like someone mentioned, a way for the bars to sponsor entertainment at no cost to themselves.

PS. If you are ever at a sports bar here in the U.S. where protective clothing. Some yahoos may view you as a convenient target smile


(7 replies, posted in Acoustic)

You can vary your strum pattern, or if you are flatpicking, use fingerstyle, or the other way around.

Hi Lisa,
   What may be throwing you, is that TAB indicates what fret to play, and on what string. It does not however indicate what finger you should use. You might want to read up on position playing. Basically a position consists of four frets. For example position 3 would be frets 3,4, 5 and 6. Position 5 would be frets 5, 6, 7 and 8. etc. In the above example of position 3, the index finger would cover all strings on fret 3. The middle finger all strings of fret 4, the ring finger all strings of fret 5, and the little finger all strings of ring 6. Position playing works great on playing lead, but helps also with open chords. Barre chords are obviously a different beast. By the way most progressions are base on position(s). Hope this helps.


(10 replies, posted in Electric)

Most metal bands use power chords for the speed/economy of movement. The distortion of the amplifiers somewhat covers the clear sounding tone you get from a barre chord. It is not as easy to pull off power chords on an acoustic obviously, as you hear most sounds more clearly on an acoustic. Even though you may prefer power chords as a short cut, I would suggest you learn barre chords also, you won't regret it.


(27 replies, posted in Electric)

Lucky gal Ruby. Most of us are too wide for our small guitars!:)


(13 replies, posted in Acoustic)

I may be in the minority here, but I say if you can afford it, play both. Even Bob Dylan plays mostly electric now. Some electric songs, don't sound well acoustically, and vice-versa. As mostly a blues player, my sound falls somewhere in between. When I am "on it", I can get a pretty decent sound with either. Having said that however, you may not want to blow your family's socks off with an electric, if you are playing in the kitchen! If I was forced to choose one over the other, it would be acoustic, in a heart beat. It's hard to pulg into a sand dune, when you go to the beach.

I agree with Rusell. I play an epihone Les Paul. My son plays a strat, and a B.C. Rich Warlock Revenge. The Les Paul has a deeper, richer, sound, and with Seymour Duncan's it has a dark, biting sound. The strat, is more versatile, and you can play more styles of music. Many blues palyer's have converted to Strats, though I still prefer the Les Paul, or even better the ES-335 or ES-355. The BC Rich is strictly a metal making machine. Hope this helps.


(23 replies, posted in Acoustic)

Wicked Game by Giant Drag. More of a telecaster type song, but not bad acoustically either.


(15 replies, posted in Electric)

Greetings Marcustee!
     We have all been through it before. Never has the old saying "one step at a time" been more appropriate than when learning to play guitar. There will be a few plateaus and valley's along the way. It is all part of it. Getting the blisters on the finger's, feeling like you are musically "challenged", when you get a dull thud on a chord, you have practiced a hundred times. When you play that barre chord, and it sounds, like a flat tire on a '59 Buick, keep reminding yourself, I will be able to play this. Your fellow musicians here on Chordie will tell you, there are few things more gratifying, than when it all coms together, and you can say YES!, I got it. For the time being, you will have to put in the time, do the repetitions, pay the price, and pay your dues. But I promise it will be well worth it, and your fellow chordians will be with you all the way, helping in any way we can. We have all heard a sound we must follow, and are there for each other.


(3 replies, posted in Electric)

Hi Doc! There is an old cliche that the music comes out of the hands, and not the instrument. I guess you know where this is going. A very expensive instrument can sound like crap if misued, and a very good guitarist can make heavenly music with a broomstick, and one string. Using that as a caveat, I think some guitars are better suited to a certain style of music. Also, don't forget the importance of the types of pickups- for example humbuckers, and single coil etc. Placement of pickups, the  number of pickups. Amplification is of course important, but with rock music, stomp-boxes are as much a part of the sound and tone, as are the number of decibels one can put out. I don't mean to complicate your questions, but there are many variables in the selection of any guitar. Are you playing for yourself, or in a stadium? For fun or professionally? Blues, rock, folk or jazz? I guess the standard answer, is play what feels right, and is within your budget. And yes, I have used all of the above criteria in the selection of electric guitars.


(167 replies, posted in Electric)

1. B.B. King
2. Sevie Ray Vaughn
3. Johnny Winter
4. Eric Clapton
5. Alvin Lee

Also like the Blues or Robert Cray, and the Jazz of George Benson


(27 replies, posted in Electric)

I started off (trying) to learn to read music. After a few months, I got bored and impatient-I wanted to learn to play songs man! So, I bought some songbooks with the chords printed in them, mostly folk songs and blues. I also bought a chord book, to translate this arcane language of chords into something I could understand. I learned a chord, as I needed to, for the song I was interested in. Now, I am sure this in not the best or easiest way to learn to play guitar. Nonetheless, it worked, and has worked for me. My son in now learning to play the guitar. His teachers, teach the basics of a song, and once they have the students interest, they sneak in some theory, and notereading. Keeps the kids fired up, and interested in learning more.


(10 replies, posted in Electric)

Great analysis Drew!


(3 replies, posted in Electric)

I like Blues magazine, for the hardcore blues fan. It is a quarterly magazine for dedicated blues fans. Also, Acoustic Guitar magazine is very good.


(10 replies, posted in Electric)

I hear you bootlegger. I was looking at the B.B. King, Lucille signature model, that does not have the f-holes, which eliminates or greatly reduces the feedfack problem. As for the epi, I've been wanting to change the pickups for some time now. I have been considering the Seymour's, though I would like to hear the others, since I am not familiar with them. Thanks all for the feedback. (no pun intended) smile


(10 replies, posted in Electric)

Thanks everybody. I think the ES has a deeper more resonant sound, especially in stereo when you run one amp set for treble and one for bass. More meloncholy if you will. The Les Paul fairly screams at mid-range, kinda of the darker edge of rock/blues. The Strat seems to be more versatile, somewhat of a biting edge. With the selector switch and pedals you can get varied tones. Just wondering. Right now I can get one or the other, but not both. Unless of course I go with a Casino, and maybe an Americn Standard strat. I have an epiphone Les Paul, that will do for now.