Jump-starting your playing

Discussion in 'Les's Living Room' started by spellcaster, Apr 20, 2019.

  1. spellcaster

    spellcaster Member

    I've finally hit on something that's kick-started my interest in playing. I've been feeling guilty for a while that I didn't seem to be playing often. I've became painfully aware of what happens when I get out of shape when I did an evening on bass with another guitar player.....No callouses left, so my fingertips were like raw hamburger, plus I had hand cramps for days afterwards.

    I thought originally that I needed to learn tab, just because it would be new to me and hopefully gratifying. I ended up setting the idea aside, but a video I came across a few days ago gave me the answer. Found a song I wanted to learn but when I actually watched the video, it turned out to be in open G. (I'd always stayed away from alternate tunings, believing that until I'd mastered standard tuning, I shouldn't try to do something else)

    Anyway, I picked out a guitar, my Tele with P90's, and turned it into a permanent open-G tuning. It's turned out to be a hell of a lot more challenging because the chord fingerings aren't the same, and some of the chord positions don't come naturally to the way my hands move. I've been picking up the guitar, 10 or 15 minutes at a time, several times a day and it's coming easier, in spite of arthritis.

    How about you guys......Was there something new or different that really jump-started your playing?
     
  2. Infant

    Infant Well-Known Member

    Something that kick started my guitar playing again was buying a nice Martin acoustic guitar. I started getting into finger picking and strumming again. Then my bass player and I started playing some acoustic gigs and having a great time doing it.
     
  3. SAguitar

    SAguitar Well-Known Member

    It's great to find anything that will kick you in your musical butt and keep you going! I'm a total tone junkie, and I have a lot of choices so I try to rediscover a guitar from the closet, or a stompbox that I haven't used for awhile to try to spark my interest.
     
  4. spellcaster

    spellcaster Member

    I've picked up the guitar every day since I've started the open-G tuning. I wondered at first if there'd be enough material that was relevant, but I don't think that'll be an issue. There seem to be a wealth of material by the Rolling Stones that was tough in standard tuning, but seems quite natural in open G. It's almost like learning to play all over again, trying to find chords that came so easily before, but I think eventually I'll get there.

    I'm not much of a pedal fan.....I just love the way things sound when I'm plugged straight in. I did buy a pedal last year that I'm getting some use out of though. It's the Digitech Mosaic, which is a 12 string simulator. It's particularly well suited to a lot of the older Beatles songs.
     
  5. SAguitar

    SAguitar Well-Known Member

    Hmmm... that one does sound interesting!

    I'm used to not be a pedal fan either, but in playing at church I need to be able to instantly morph into whatever tone a song may call for, all the way from jazz to metallic stuff and anywhere in between. When I'm playing at home though, most of the time its just a nice guitar into a little tube amp, and that's all I need.
     
  6. Infant

    Infant Well-Known Member

    I've got a pedal board for gigging but at home, guitar into my Deluxe Reverb for rich clean tones...mmmmm, yummy!!
     
  7. spellcaster

    spellcaster Member

    Yeah, I love clean too.......There's something lush in the sound of being plugged straight in. My main objection is that even when the effect isn't turned on, there's a degradation in the signal just from having passed through the pedal.

    I find the same issue with my tuner, a Peterson StroboFlip. You'd think that a tuner that's almost 300.00 in Canada should be a Cadillac in performance, but I've found that running the tuner inline between the guitar and amp really hurts sonically. I've come up with an innovative way around that though......I run the guitar direct into the second input jack of my Twin Reverb, and run a second cable from the amp's first input jack out to the tuner input of the StroboFlip. Because the input jacks are in parallel, the tuner is always available even though it's not between the guitar and amp, and as a bonus, I can mute the signal by switching to standby, but the tuner is still available.

    Although I rarely would use a pedal, I can see where I might want to dust off my BOSS Fender '59 Bassman pedal. It's the best thing I've found to put a little bit of hair on the clean tones of the Twin Reverb, and might be useful while I'm trying out those old Stones tunes with the open-G tuning.
     
    Infant likes this.
  8. Infant

    Infant Well-Known Member

    After discovering the Snark clip on, I discarded my pedal tuner...took up valuable space and I found the Snark to be more accurate.
     
  9. SAguitar

    SAguitar Well-Known Member

    The Snark is a good unit, and I keep one around for backup. My only quibble with them is they seem to eat up batteries pretty quickly. I take the battery out when I am not using the little tuner.
     
  10. Infant

    Infant Well-Known Member

    I get free batteries from my bass player. Besides I can get the coin batteries at a local dollar store ...5 for $3 CAD that's like $2.25US
     
    SAguitar likes this.
  11. spellcaster

    spellcaster Member

    I have a question about the open-G tuning thing, if anybody here knows.......The video that I've been working with to learn the song I want to play, the guy mentions that he doesn't use the 6th string. I'm curious about whether that's typical of playing in open-G tuning, or is it just coincidence that it happens that way in this song? I've read many times about Keith Richards's Telecaster that he actually removes the 6th string, and I wondered if that's because it doesn't normally get used in this tuning, or does it just suit the stuff he plays in the Stones. Any experts on Open-G that can enlighten me?
     
  12. Infant

    Infant Well-Known Member

    Sorry Ken, I can't help you as I don't play in open tunings. My son has learned some Stones songs in open G tuning and I believe that he uses the 6th string.
     
  13. SAguitar

    SAguitar Well-Known Member

    Yeah, I don't know Diddly about open-G or any other crazy tunings. I seem to be stuck in standard.
     
  14. Biddlin

    Biddlin Active Member

    I use D modal DADDAD and drop DADGBD once in a great while. Open G more often. I cheat on stage, though.
    DSCN0292.JPG
    I use presets. A lot easier than carrying four guitars.
     
    arcticsg and SAguitar like this.
  15. spellcaster

    spellcaster Member

    I suspect my days of playing out are over, unfortunately, but if I do, it'll almost certainly be as a bass player. I stopped trying to pass myself off as a lead guitar player back in the seventies, lol. Anyway, it makes sense to me to dedicate one guitar to permanent open-G tuning. I almost always use my cherryburst Strat as a daily player, so I'll designate one of my Tele's as permanently G-tuned. (Nice light guitar with p90's) I'll still have eight more guitars and basses sitting in their cases that rarely see the light of day, but I don't see myself experimenting with any other alternate tunings in the near future.

    I do have a vague interest in Nashville tuning, standard tuning done with unusual combinations of strings.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nashville_tuning_(high_strung)
     
    Infant likes this.
  16. Infant

    Infant Well-Known Member

    Hmmm, that Nashville tuning sounds interesting but I figure that one would have to replace the nut to accomodate the lighter strings.
     
  17. SAguitar

    SAguitar Well-Known Member

    Yeah, I haven't used it, but as near as I can tell the Nashville tuning is a niftyt studio trick that works really well as an accompanying instrument on recordings. I can't visualize a good use for it in a stage setting, unless you have at least one other acoustic guitar laying it down.
     
  18. spellcaster

    spellcaster Member

    Hmmmm....I hadn't considered the nut. I've been thinking about changing the nut on my Cabronita Tele to a ZeroGlide, so maybe I'll do that before I try the Nashville tuning. One of the nice things about the ZeroGlide is that it eliminates the headache of worrying about nut slot size. I used one on one of my Duosonics and really liked the way it worked out.

    https://goldtonemusicgroup.com/zeroglide/
     
  19. SAguitar

    SAguitar Well-Known Member

    Alright, that ZeroGlide nut is a very interesting idea!
     
  20. Infant

    Infant Well-Known Member

    I agree...you don't have to worry about slot depth...kinda like Gibsons zero nut from 2015
     

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