Archive for March, 2013

GuitarTrivia

Posted in Equipment, Players, Playing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 28, 2013 by theguitarcave
gamecover

Click to Play

GAME INCLUDES
• 7 Levels
• Bonus Levels
• Challenging!
• Timed Questions
• 1930s — present
• FUN!
• 30,000+ points
• FREE online play
• Educational!

YES! I finally finished this project! It’s pretty cool! and it’s FREE! Click on the above poster to play.

I had originally wanted to make a complete game experience with a billion levels, more gaming variation, and more interactivity, but all of that is way beyond my abilities as a programmer. There is an retro-element like Doom 1994 to the whole thing and that wasn’t intentional. I do have a whole lot of content and ideas for content I didn’t use and I don’t know any investors or programmers personally, but if anyone with skills or investment capital wants to do something, contact me through the blog. I think this is a boss idea, because there’s a lot of guitarists out there who play games and no one is tapping the market for games specific to this audience. I know how fluid information can be on the net and there’s a good chance someone will cop the idea, but remember — YOU SAW IT HERE FIRST!

as3

I have to give two shout-outs for helping me with this project or it would’ve never happened. The first is Gary Rosenzweig’s book: ActionScript 3.0  Game Programming University. I didn’t know much about programming prior to getting into the project, but the book is really informative and I used some of the base code and scope ideas for the guts of the levels. If you are looking to get into ActionScript 3.0 or further your knowledge, I recommend the book and it gets great reviews on Amazon too! The second shout-out is a BIG THANKS to Inja Studio as always for all of the help, encouragement, and advice. Without their support I wouldn’t have a playable game to pass on, but now that I do…Have FUN!

ONLINE CONCERTS (FULL)

Posted in Movies, Players, Playing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 25, 2013 by theguitarcave

There is a plethora of really cool (full) concerts online so I’m starting a sticky list. Of course, one never knows how long they will remain — I do try to go through the archives from time to time and weed out any links that are dead, but sometimes that may take some time. I watch a wide variety of stuff — as long as there is a guitar present, I’m down!. I have taken out the embedded movies because it was taking too long for my blog to load. Click on the titles to go to the concert.

Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble: An absolutely blistering concert from Italy in 1988. Stevie was clean by this time and he and his band were just amazing even though there are obvious sound problems and technical difficulties going on throughout the performance. Completely ripping blues and rock guitar.

The Rosenberg Trio: Another great concert from Italy from 2011. I think the Rosenbergs are one of the best bands in the world at the moment and Stohelo the lead guitarist just returned from a doozy of a Japan tour with his other trio. The only thing about this concert — it’s outside…WTF is up with the smoke/fog machine. Hello, concert promoters? Were you expecting Nine Inch Nails or Marilyn Manson?

Muse: Live at the Itunes Festival 2012. I just got turned onto this British band. Some of their songs I can take or leave, but guitarist Matthew Bellamy is a total guitar powerhouse in all of the best possible ways. Believe it or not, I had never heard of them prior to last week. Just goes to show how much great music and how many great guitarists are out there.

System of a Down: Live at the Rock AM Ring 2011. I always liked SOAD even though some of their stuff is over-the-top to the point of hilarity. Guitarist Daron Malakian and the SOAD rhythm section have brought many moments of memorable crunch and intensity and they still have it. They can still bring out the awesome crowds too obviously!

Paco De Lucia: Can you believe Paco has been doing this for 50 years? He’s had an amazing career and is still one of the most inspiring guitarists in the world. He also always assembles great bands to interact with, but I could listen to him play solo guitar all day!

Rodrigo y Gabriela: Totally love these two! They integrate so many musical sounds and styles in the course of one concert and have such a full sound that it’s really remarkable. Although this concert is from a few years ago I can say that they have continued to expand their sonic capabilities because I just saw them a few weeks ago with a full band on Austin City Limits. Watching Gabriela doing her rhythm thing while simultaneously jumping around is flat-out amazing!

Queen: Live in Argentina in 1981. Great concert. Queen at their rock best. Amazing sound and for anyone who thinks Brian May needed to overdub all of his guitars to sound good, you should watch this. And of course, there is Freddie in total Freddie Mode. All of the great ones are here and totally smoking!

T-REX: Here’s a real piece of history — Marc Bolan and T-Rex live in 1972 and filmed by Bolan’s good friend Beatle Ringo Starr. In my opinion Bolan never got the credit he deserved for glam rock. People always focus on Bowie and the New York Dolls and that credit is deserved, but T REX was very influential and a rousing, rocking band when they were cooking…as they are here.

Jeff Beck: Jeff in Tokyo back in 1999 with the absolutely shredding Jennifer Batten and Randy Hope-Taylor on bass. Jeff at his funky, fusion-y best with a great band and great sound. JB & JB work really well together interweaving their lines and respective styles together and Beck looks like in did in 1975! Does playing without a pick keep one from aging? Hmm.

Acoustic Alchemy: I don’t know too much about these guys but I like what I hear on this concert and what I’ve heard on the IR (Internet Radio). Great grooves and a great blend of acoustic guitar playing from Greg Carmichael and Miles Gilderdale. AA has been around since the 80s and enjoyed some mainstream success in the 1990s. This concert from Jakarta in 2011 proves they’re still bringing it.

High on Fire: Back when they were a stoner rock band. I saw this tour and was blown away! Yea! As you can see from the concert, it was obvious they were destined for the big time and greatness. Though the band has gone through changes, the riffin’, shred and energy that made them was in effect from the very beginning. It felt and sounded absolutely awesome from 15 feet away lemme tell ya!

Earl Klugh: The fantastic Earl Klugh live from last year. He’s absolutely brilliant and though the concert starts a little slow he will blow you away with his command of the instrument and plays some very beautiful music in the process.

More to come very soon!:

Cream

Posted in Players with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 22, 2013 by theguitarcave

CREAMwas an awesome band — The first SUPERGROUP and a total powerhouse of over-the-top PSYCHEDELIC-BLUZE-ROCK excitement. I really dug all of their stuff in my younger days and really don’t think Eric Clapton ever did any better except for maybe some of what happened in Blind Faith and, of course, Derek and The Dominos. Very bold statement I know, but I don’t think I’m the only one who holds that opinion. Cream became one of the highest-power draws in the psychedelic era, a period of music I enjoy quite a bit and one that was extremely influential in a way that still resonates even now. Most of the people I’ve known in NYC were not fans, but the whole 60s era and everything was so controversial and so much of its time, I don’t blame those who don’t get it or don’t like it for feeling that way.

I don’t think it’s necessary to regurgitate the band’s biography, but a couple of items are very important to know. The three members of Cream were all major musical stars in England before the band was formed. Clapton’s reputation, developed with stints in The Yardbirds and John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers led to graffiti on London streets proclaiming him “GOD”. He certainly was one of the most tasteful and fiery practitioners of blues guitar and he had a tone and a touch that was simply too good to believe. Keep in mind the guy was only 24 when Cream broke up in 1968! Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker were also ninjas on their respective instruments and Bruce had a pretty amazing range as a vocalist, a fact that would serve Cream well, especially in live performances. One of the big problems, once they were signed however, was the music business. In 1966 record companies and managers were still looking for “hits” and tried to groom and encourage every band to be the next Beatles. You can see this in the early Cream (mimed) television appearances. I Feel Free is not a bad song, especially the instrumentation. But the insistence on the band to be pop stars would rankle especially Clapton who, at the time, considered himself a “blues purist.”

A major game-changer would arrive in England in 1966 in the form of an outstanding American guitarist who was a big fan of Eric Clapton. His name was Jimi Hendrix. While I certainly don’t mean to imply that Hendrix had much effect on the record industry (the pop format focus would dog Cream throughout their very short career) he affected all of the musicians in England in a very profound way. His first album, Are You Experienced? would push people like Cream to new heights and the psychedelic era would take off in full flight. One of the first things Hendrix did when arriving in England was try to sit in with Cream.

Even though this episode was devastating for Clapton at the time, he and the rest of London (and soon the world) came to realize that Jimi was what he was. None of the British guitarists, save for Pete Townshend (who was also a Jimi fan), was as upfront and “wild” as Jimi was perceived to be. It’s important to realize that there was a “respect” issue in play. Clapton saw himself as a disciple of the blues masters and he was playing THEIR music. So it was natural that he would be a little restrained about how he played and performed. He was/is a more reserved person in general. Jimi, on the other hand was playing HIS music; he’d played with Little Richard, The Isley Brothers and, of course, was not British and not a white guy. He could afford to be as free with the music and performances as he wanted and his character/persona was much more outgoing, to the point of volatility sometimes. He also heard manifestations of the blues that no one at the time could’ve put across (Third Stone From the Sun, Are You Experienced) so in the end any comparisons were pretty pointless. However, to the very end Jimi would be one of Cream’s biggest fans, launching into an impromptu and basically unwanted (at least as far as BBC executives were concerned) version of Sunshine of Your Love on The Lulu Show after Cream played their last gigs in 1968.

The competition that did exist was good for all involved because as many people know — if you want to be a great musician, hang with other great musicians. There was the other benefit of all kinds of new sounds and technology being made available to guitar players like…the wah-wah pedal! How many great songs have a wah-wah as part of the sound? As people who knew Cream have pointed out, Jack Bruce wrote the riff to Sunshine as a homage to Jimi one night after attending a Hendrix gig. Eric Clapton quotes the song “Blue Moon” in the first few bars of the solo and recorded it on his far-out and trippy-decorated 1964 Gisbon SG. The drum part originated with Ginger Baker who came up with the idea of playing African rhythms on the “1” and the “3”. He and Mitch Mitchell, drummer for the JHE, would “make” many songs for their respective bands and propel Jimi and Eric to new heights because of what they brought to recordings and performances.

While the pressures from the label and management would never dim, onstage Cream became a force for improvised blues-based rock with elements of psychedelia. While Jimi Hendrix would blow up the USA at the Monterey Pop Festival, which Cream’s manager passed on so they would have “bigger impact,” Cream finally did arrive as headliners in the fall of 1967 and quickly established themselves as a very impressive musical force. They gained a very sympathetic following among The Love Generation and were encouraged to embark on long improvised jams that would sometimes pass the 20-minute mark. At the ceremony to induct the band into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in the mid-90s, ZZ Top drummer Dusty Hill related that back in the late 60s EVERY drummer in Texas had their kit set up like Ginger Baker and tried to cop some of what he was doing for their own sound. The same, of course, was true of Eric Clapton and his blazing Gibson through a Marshall stack sound. In some ways, at least at the time, what Hendrix was doing was so far beyond many people (even what he was hearing, nevermind playing) Eric’s approach was much more attainable: Learn how to play tasteful blues licks, plug in, crank to 11. There are many accounts of their tours of the US that detail not only how LOUD the band played, but how GREAT the guitar sound was. Even before Cream, Eric Clapton knew how to get the great guitar tone that was the envy of many players. His sound had a lot to do with his touch, his vibrato, his rolling the tone pots on the guitar back and forth to achieve different levels of brightness and contrast in the tone of his licks. Outside of the wah-wah he eschewed other effects that would compromise the quality of the sound between guitar and amp. While he would switch to Fender Stratocasters by the time he got the Derek and the Dominoes project going, he used Gibson guitars, mostly the SG, a Les Paul, and the ’63-65 Firebird and the ’64 335 that are played at the 1968 Farewell Concert. All of these guitars gave him that big fat tone that became a staple in rock music and it would not be too much of a stretch to say that all started with EC. Here’s a nice collection of pics with the Firebird. Here’s a great site with a really heavy analysis of Clapton’s guitars! Here’s one of my favorite Cream songs…Tales of Brave Ulysses. While there was always a lot of tension in Cream (especially between Bruce and Baker) they all look like they’re having a good time on this one. Also…sometimes the Youtube comments are genius… like the first one on this video:

“Okay gentlemen, here’s the plan … we bring in the three pre-eminent musicians of our time, we put them on an empty stage and let them play their hearts out with no limits, have them really going for it, exceeding even their own preconceived limits, and we film it (with excellent audio) for posterity … what’s that? Cameras? No, we only need one camera, that should be fine.”

Prior to their post-break-up Goodbye album, Cream released three highly-acclaimed discs: Fresh Cream, Disraeli Gears, and Wheels of Fire, which incidentally was the first ever platinum-selling double album. Both Wheels of Fire and Goodbye combined sides of studio recordings and various live tracks the band recorded in the US. This created an interesting mix between the shorter, almost pop-oriented format of the studio releases and the furiously improvised live numbers that stretched out to epic lengths (for the time). Notable covers of blues material included Sittin’ On Top of the World, Rollin’ and Tumblin’, I’m So Glad, Spoonful, Born Under a Bad Sign, and Cat’s Squirrel, which although it never received the live workouts the others did, is a great song complete with great harmonica lines courtesy of Bruce and a brilliant guitar breakdown. Personally I always liked the vibe of the studio versions of Sittin’ (the tone of the guitar is awesome) and I’m So Glad where Clapton plays the entire solo on the “G” string. Of course the live versions were simply balls-out and furious, demonstrating the best of Cream’s unbridled energy and instrumental prowess.

But all three members of the band were capable of writing original songs and write they did! Besides Sunshine of Your Love, I Feel Free and Tales of Brave Ulysses, there are other really cool things in the catalog. SWLBAR, Badge, Deserted Cities of the Heart, Strange Brew, Politician, What a Bringdown, Toad, N.S.U., Sleepy Time Time, and of course, the completely EPIC White Room. I always associate the sound of these songs with SUMMERTIME for some reason. While the music is not the happy pop sounds of Strawberry Alarm Clock, there is none of the cold distance that one hears in The Doors or even some of The Beatles material from that period.

Back in the early 80s, Cream’s Farewell Concert was a staple at midnight movie showings (along with Gimme Shelter, Jimi Hendrix, Woodstock and The Rocky Horror Picture Show). I remember going to see this with a bunch of friends in Pittsburgh and it was party city — a real good time. One of the dudes was a total Clapton fanatic and I’d always say, “yea…but Jimi was better!” When the following portion of the movie came on I still remember him turning around and saying, “See?” If you’re looking to cop some of Clapton’s vibe in your playing there is no better instruction than watching this about 20-30 times and playing along until you get it.

Alas, like many other things during the intense decade of the 1960s, Cream did not survive. The relationship among the band began to sour and the intense pressure and constant touring also began to take a toll. Eric Clapton was gravitating away from the “jam” idea to a more song-based approach and as he has said many times over the course of his career, hearing The Band’s Music From Big Pink completely changed his life and his idea of what he would do with music. In other interviews he also expressed that he was never totally comfortable in Cream, not only because of the strain brought by constant very loud improvisation, but also the pressure brought by the mantle of being a guitar hero in a Supergroup. Interestingly enough, during the same period, Jimi Hendrix was moving in the opposite direction — from songs to jams and a more free-form approach — and would continue on this track right up until his death in 1970. As the 60s merged into the 70s all three members of Cream would go in separate directions, deal with crippling substance-abuse problems and never be a part of something as amazing again. While the Layla sessions and album were/are amazing, this was definitely due to the involvement of Duane Allman who was extended the invitation to join the group but declined. Neither the album or the single, Layla was an instant hit and gained it’s well-deserved accolades long after Clapton had broken up the group and moved on. His understated guitar hero status has been maintained and he has managed to adapt his sound and style to all of the trends that have come and gone since the 1960s. The Blues is universal and works with anything and he became quite an effective songwriter. While some who loved what he did in Cream probably had issues with EC in the 80s and 90s, he acquired a whole new audience of fans and has managed to keep a career and reputation as a guitar icon for almost 50 years, which is no small feat in a very tough business.

While there were always suggestions for Cream to reunite, this didn’t happen until 2005 and just as it was in the 1960s, their time together was very brief. The shows happened and went off well, but some of the acrimony was still present and it’s not like any of them, Eric Clapton included, needed or wanted to be on tour for months on end. I missed going to the shows but bought the DVD and think they did a pretty good job of it. There was a conscious effort to NOT make it like it was in the old days and many people took them to task for this. The thing is I would bet that none of the people who did were there for the first time around and are, like many (younger) music consumers, easily bored. Eric Clapton was 61, Ginger Baker was 66 and Jack Bruce was 62 and fresh off of a liver transplant and surviving liver cancer. I don’t really know why people would expect the experience would be like The Albert Hall 1968. As I said earlier Eric was all of 24 years of age when that happened. Of course they could’ve gone the way of some other bands and brought in a bunch of support musicians, but in the end they did what they always did. Three guys climbed onstage and played. Even though the volume overkill, drugs and insane atmosphere of the 60s was not present and the energy level was a bit subdued, the concerts were a fitting testament to what was a very revolutionary band. Some of the lyrics to Deserted Cities of the Heart, one of my favorite tunes, maybe sum it up best:

I felt the wind shout like a drum.
You said, “My friend, love’s end has come.”
It couldn’t last, had to stop.
You drained it all to the last drop.
It was on the way,
On the road to dreams, yeah.
Now my heart’s drowned in no love streams, yeah.
Now my heart’s drowned in no love streams, yeah.

Guitar Spambot

Posted in This and That with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 13, 2013 by theguitarcave

Brilliant…bloody brilliant. No…seriously. That this collection of guitar terms and non sequiturs is sent to a blog post that mentions spam is really just too cool for school. Human? More Human? Incoherent Guitar Child? Drunk Rasputin with a Strat? Mad Machine? Whoever or Whatever you are:

quote

I was watching Food Tech the other night because I CAN’T SPEND EVERY WAKING MINUTE PRACTICING SCALES AND ARPEGGIOS (even though I should). The show takes a very important American meal or food choice (Italian dinner, baseball park fare, breakfast) and illustrates how all of the latest industrial technology is used to produce the high quantities of food necessary to satisfy American stomachs. The show is comparable to Guy Fieri’s Diners, Drive-ins and Dives without all of the WHAM! BANG! fast scene cutting (which I find highly annoying). The host of Food Tech, Bobby Bognar, is a self-effacing, down-to-earth guy who gets really excited about food and technology. I guess he has to if he’s going to host the show. He’s also a guitar picker, singer and songwriter and is/was a member of The Piper Downs, a Warped Tour-style band that was a hit with the kids a few years ago.

Anyhow, this past week’s episode happened to feature Chinese takeout and during the course of the show BB revealed that a few years ago there were so many winners (110) on one Powerball ticket that officials suspected fraud. But as people came in to claim their prizes they all mentioned that they had taken their numbers from a fortune cookie and eventually the cookies were traced to a facility right across the river in Long Island City. The factory, owned by Wonton Food, makes four million cookies a day and the Food Tech crew showed how the cookies are produced. Up until the mid-1960s the fortunes were hand-written and hand inserted ’cause you know there were only like 200,000 people in the USA back then, but now the fortunes and lucky numbers are computer-generated and machines stuff the paper into the cookies because the population has grown to millions and billions and trillions as Carl Sagan would say. Of course most spam (and I don’t mean SPAM) is similarly produced and sent out. As I found out today, spam sent to blogs is a form of Spamdexing; a huge amount of stuff sent to blogs like mine in order to increase the spammer’s site indexing. This is a perverted type of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and if you’re trying to hype your weight-loss or genitalia augmentation website or service it seems this would be a good way to go. If you consider that a Google search on weight loss produces 415 MILLION results in 0.57 seconds it becomes obvious why ranking is so important. But the whole spam thing is very impersonal and I have to admit, watching Food Tech can also leave me cold. Yes, it’s neat-o that machines can do all of these amazing things, but the high degree of industrialization in large-scale food production is similarly impersonal, sometimes to the point of cruelty, to the animals, the final products(food) and ultimately to us humans. The world grows larger and spins faster and people and industries seem to go to ever more ridiculous lengths just to keep up. I much prefer the shows that highlight smaller-scale farming and food production and a more personal and nurturing relationship between humans and various flora and fauna in the same way I prefer The Rosenberg Trio to an auto-tuned pop star with 15 backup dancers. One day, perhaps the auto-tuning, food factories and spam bots will become self-aware and then all your Music, Moo Shu Pork, and Blogs are belong to us! Or maybe…that’s already happened… *shivers*

Finally, a great Django Reinhardt documentary, Django Reinhardt — Three Fingered Lightning, that includes interviews with Stephane Grappelli and other musical peers from that era. Originally aired on Australian television I believe, now on Youtube HERE. (I can’t embed it). It’s a nice little hour’s worth of entertainment and if you’re like me you NEVER tire of anything devoted to The Master!

NEW LINKS!

Posted in Players, Playing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 12, 2013 by theguitarcave

mango1

One great thing about having an awesome blog like mine is all of the spam that comes in as comments hyping products that I never knew existed and are as phony as a winning ticket in a Nigerian lottery. Ok, well, it’s not so great, but WordPress is so adept at filtering out the unwanted mail, comments and lame scams that I don’t really have to worry about it. The latest craze sweeping the world seems to be African Mango Weight Loss…stuff. It promises all of the familiar weight loss results and I guess the more exotic the better. This is one of the main problems with the internet; very serious or sincere people who are looking for information or are desperate for a new way of doing things search or are bombarded with information and it’s sometimes flat-out overwhelming the sheer amount of stuff that is out there. There is also an issue of quality. Not all information is equal, in fact, as we all know, some information is useless, sometimes to the point of being hazardous to one’s health. Naturally the more desperate, the more one has to be skeptical of the marketing promises associated with a certain product, because if you’re desperate enough you’ll believe anything won’t you?

When I first started trying to play Gypsy Jazz I was this kind of desperate so the African Mango is metaphoric if you will, or… as it were. Gradually I learned and things got a little better. What I’ve tried to do from the very beginning of this blog is give anyone who comes here some interesting reading and for players, some worthwhile advice or directions to information I think is important and interesting. One of the benefits of the internet is that I am able to do this and people who are way more skilled and/or are on a similar journey can do likewise. I’m adding some new links to the module on the right side of this page and if you are a PLAYER, especially a player of the Jazz or Gypsy-Jazz persuasion you should find these links pretty interesting. I won’t go a far as to guarantee your money back, but you can definitely pick up a lot of good stuff and it’s not like I’m going to be emailing asking for your address and banking information. Also, it is important to note that I am not affiliated with any of these sites or people in anyway. It is info I’ve found that I’m passing on to you ’cause we all got the hunger! Amirite?

The first new link is Jazzguitarlessons.net. This site is run by a jazz guitarist named Mark and it is really comprehensive…I mean you could literally spend the rest of your life at this website. Not only is there a whole lot of basic info to get you started on jazz guitar, but there are many video lessons, podcasts, diagrams, charts, transcriptions and options for taking actual lessons. What I’ve discovered on this journey is that one should be open to as many avenues of learning as possible. You never know where you might stumble upon a lesson or a trick that will not only give you a good lick or phrase, but also might tie a bunch of related information together. This is an excellent site for beginners and more seasoned players, so definitely check it out! You’ll receive a free e-book by signing up.

JazzAdvice.com is wonderful site that caters to jazz players of all instruments (and can obviously appeal to any instrumentalist). This site has tons of er…advice obviously on playing jazz, which is a difficult endeavor no matter who you are. It is as comprehensive as JazzGuitarLessons.net. You could spend a weekend here and you would only get an introduction to all of the information they are trying to impart. And it’s good quality information. None of that “You can be a guitar star by learning this one simple scale!!” stuff. Learning to play jazz has a lot more to it than just getting a transcription and tackling a tune. There’s a whole pedagogy behind the styles and processes that go into producing the music and the more of this you take in the better you will be. Here’s a video from this site of a guy talking. I know you’re probably thinking “I can’t learn anything from this…he’s a friggin’ piano player fergawdssakes!”

Ignore at your own peril!! This is Hal Galper and he’s amazing. He’s recorded with jazz luminaries like Chet Baker, Cannonball Adderly, Stan Getz and John Scofield. Notice in the following video he’s talking about how the brain learns music. I did a post on that a long time ago HERE. Synchronicity is not just a POLICE album…

The Belltower is a Youtube channel and to quote Joe Pesci….”ok, ok, ok you’re tired of listening and you wanna play ok?—” this is really focused instruction. Grab your guitar and follow along as The Belltower guides you through some cool licks and theory in the style of people like Pat Martino and Grant Green. Simple, clear, and easy-to-follow. I hope this guy keeps making videos because he is a great player and instructor. Here is the Pat Martino lesson:

Gypsy Jazz School is a great site that I’ve mentioned before on these pages. I sure wish sites like this existed back when I started playing all those years ago. Instead of giving players a bunch of fish (to use a familiar metaphor) Yakov Hoter, who runs the site, promises to teach every guitarist how to fish and he delivers on that promise in a big way. There are studies of all the major aspects of learning Gypsy Jazz at very affordable prices AND there are some very practical tips for how to learn and how to practice, which are, believe it or not, harder than you may imagine, especially if you want to progress quickly. He also has a bunch of free videos on Youtube that serve as an introduction to the various lessons. Definitely recommended!

JazzManouche90 is another Youtube channel and one that is pretty focused on Gypsy Jazz or Manouche Guitar. Lots of very good stuff here and it’s all about playing along with the lessons, which is the Manouche way — Watch And Learn. The channel, run by Clément Reboul, is based in France and the titles are in French but don’t let the language thing hand you up. Music is universal. Here’s a video that provides some exercises for your right hand technique:

Patrus53 (Youtube), Patrus53 (site) and Gadjo88 are the final links for the day and what a way to wrap up. I’ve already had something from Patrus w/ Stephane Wrembel, but he just never stops!! His commitment to Gypsy Jazz is unbelievable and because he interviews just about everybody there is a lot to see and do either at his site or on the Youtube channel. I don’t know anything about Gadjo88 as I just found it over the weekend, but there are some great videos on the channel so that’s why I’m linking. Sometimes the best form of learning is just watching and listening to people who can really jam. Not only are they awe-inspiring and fun to watch, but once you reach a certain level in your playing, understanding and facility with the music, it is possible to learn a whole lot from one viewing. I also enjoy the interviews that I can understand because all of these people have interesting insights, not only on music, but also with regard to life itself. I’m going to use video examples from that feature three players who are awesome: Adrien Moignard, Gonzalo Bergara, and Sébastien Giniaux. Totally rippin’ performances and all three of these guys have an original approach, chops and a sense of humor that kills. I also find that everyone is really loose in these informal settings and that sometimes leads to very nice and sometimes (funny) results.

So, like I said, all of these links will be permanently listed in the module at the right side of this page because I’m on a roll or something and this post will slide off to another page pretty soon!