Lessons about performing, lesson twenty: Learn time management skills!

This is the twentieth entry! Holy balls! I can’t believe we’ve come this far – or that it has gone this quickly. Click here to read the whole list of rules for performing musicians.

I know, this may come off cheesy, but I really do love the feedback and comments. I didn’t expect it to make more than a few entries on this blog and call it good. I surely didn’t expect to make this list. When I started this list, I expected it’d go to maybe five.

It seems I’m really not good at expectations when it comes to this list.

The ‘net tells me that I’m lucky to get even 1000 visitors a month, that most sites get barely any. Play Guitar has had something like 1,200 visitors in the past 30 days and just keeps growing. Y’all chew through some bandwidth, too. You’ve eaten about a GB, so far this month. It’s all good. I’m probably going to throw ads on here someday.

My point is, that I don’t deserve that. I’m not that great a writer and people say things much better than I do. I’m verbose, sloppy, and hardly ever manage to stay on topic. (Probably weed’s fault, again!)

I’m also not as productive as it looks like. See, WordPress (the software that runs this site) has a delightful feature I just recently learned about. It’s allowing me to schedule stuff. So, I take my free time and write – even if it’s just 20 minute blocks. (That’s the minimum amount of free time I’ll accept.) Then, three of those makes a full hour – or about how long it’ll probably take me to pound out 1,000 words that makes this article.

Which is a hell of a damned good lead, if I do say myself, into this very topic! (I’m getting better at these damned intros!) Continue reading “Lessons about performing, lesson twenty: Learn time management skills!”

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Lesson about Recording for the Complete Novice, lesson two: Microphones

Ladies and gentlemen, please put those paws together and give a warm welcome to our special guest. We welcome back to the stage, Mr. Chris Carr from The Kilt Lifters.

Folks that know the situation also know that he’s kind enough to let us host a weekly event where we generally run amok and act the fool. The bourbon sipping gent is pretty relaxed and doesn’t even yell at us to get off his lawn! Sweet!

Anyhow, he’s a fine musician in his own right. He plays everything from the uke to the guitar and flouts (I’ve decided that’s the word, and I’m not going to use a dictionary. You knew what you were into when you clicked the link!) with the best of ’em! If you catch him on a good day, you can find him playing with himself or prancin’ about in a kilt!

He recently dropped a new album and has a few more for sale. Having heard the new album, I can say it’s a delightful listen that has only one drawback – it’s too short. Still, it’s well worth considering for your Celtic Music needs and you get to help support a member of the community.

At the very least, give his site a quick visit and browse around. You never know, ladies. If you offer ’em enough money, maybe he’ll show ya what’s under his kilt!

One more time, let’s make him feel welcome and put those hands together for Mr. Chris Carr!
Continue reading “Lesson about Recording for the Complete Novice, lesson two: Microphones”

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Things look very different from the stage, part 3.5

I’ve decided to number this shit a little differently. This one shall be known as 3.5! My next show will be 4 and we’ll continue like that. Though, frankly, I’m not exactly sure what the whole point of these articles are.

If I had to say I was trying to explain something, I’d end up changing that every time. There doesn’t seem to be any basic message of importance. I guess, in a way, I’m trying to humanize your entertainment.

That’s what I am. I’m your entertainment. You pay me to entertain you. Given my experience in the industry, you now pay me quite well to entertain you.

Today’s gig is going to pay more than Dr. Hook was making.

We sing about beauty and we sing about truth,
At ten-thousand dollars a show.

I costs almost half that just to pay my band and any show expenses. They’ve been good band members, so they’ll be getting a bonus tonight. (They get paid the same amount and I pay them directly, processing the books afterwards. Otherwise, they’d have to wait for the check I just got to be processed.)

Err… Yes, yes some folks still do use checks! Continue reading “Things look very different from the stage, part 3.5”

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Lessons about performing, lesson nineteen: You should probably be soberish!

If you don’t know what I’m doing, then do try to catch up. Basically, I’m telling you all the rules you need to know – if you want to be a professional performing musician.

Granted, it’s a horrible idea – but who among you hasn’t thought about how awesome it must be to stand in front of a crowd of screaming fans – some of them showing you their tits. (Seriously, just lift up your shirt and show the ladies your own man-boobs and they’ll reciprocate. Not all tits are equal, some are much better than others. You have been warned.)

I kinda hate these intros, but someone has to write ’em – or my front page looks like ass. Also, ignore that strange cookie notice. I had to disable my usual one, ’cause I can’t figure out what I did to make that happen. (Weed was a factor.)

You know what? Enough of this damned intro! I’ve got stuff to say!
Continue reading “Lessons about performing, lesson nineteen: You should probably be soberish!”

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Things look very different from the stage, part three.

Well, I’m now on part three of this and I didn’t actually expect it to become a series or a regular thing. I still have the two main series going and, frankly, the only reason I’m able to do this is because I have learned to manage my time well.

The reality is, I don’t know why I write these, nor for whom I write them. I simply write them because they seem like they need to be written. I write them because you find them interesting, read them, and feed me delicious ego points to let me know that you enjoyed yourself.

I don’t actually care about the points. I care about the comments and the number of people who read the silliness I pass through the keyboard. Those are the things that make it worth doing. Those little comments that you add may seem like nothing, but they’re like Super Mario Coins to me.

Let me get some more herbal inspiration into me… Continue reading “Things look very different from the stage, part three.”

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Lessons about performing; lesson eighteen: You’re gonna be poor!

I’ve touched on this subject before, but I wanted to write an whole lesson on it. See, I’m trying to tell you the reality about becoming a professional performing musician. I’m trying to give you the list of rules that nobody else seems willing to write and put in one spot. Here’s the full list.

I don’t want this article to turn you off. I want it to make you believe you can do better. I just want you to be realistic about your chances and what you can expect the numbers to look like.

So, with that in mind, I give you the next lesson… Continue reading “Lessons about performing; lesson eighteen: You’re gonna be poor!”

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It’s time for the 14th guitarist better than Hendrix!

“What are you doing TheBuddha?” You might ask.

“Writing an intro.” I’d answer.

“For what?” You might inquire.

“My bitchin’ list of guitarists better than Hendrix.” I’d probably answer.

“Hendrix was the greatest guitarist ever!” You’d say, while being the most wrong one could ever possibly be.

“Bitch, please! I’ve shown you THIRTEEN DAMNED TIMES ALREADY!” Is pretty much exactly how I’d reply.

I have seen a few opinions and a few comments that make me think people aren’t actually paying attention. I’m gonna say it one more time!

Hendrix was a fine guitarist, an excellent musician, a great composer, and a stunningly brilliant performance artist. If we also consider the era, he was a wonderful gift to music.

That said, he was only a “fine” or “good” guitarist. Rating heavily weighted for a subset of guitarists who are performing or recording artists who are strictly professionals. In other words, Hendrix played better than you – probably. Hendrix did not play better than our next musician.

This is a list based on technical prowess, above all other things. Also taken into considerations are things like difficulty in replication, innovation, understanding of music theory (even if unschooled specifically in such), and things like that.

If you’re offended, you’re just offended because you’re fucking wrong.

Seriously, I’ve shown 13 guitarists who are, by those metrics, better than Hendrix was – even on his best day. I’ve shown guitarists who are better than him – even on their worst day.

Some of it is subjective. However, I’m qualified to hold an opinion. In fact, I’d say I’m eminently qualified to opine. Frankly, that’s me calling myself a damned expert on the subject. As such, the other people (like the worst pack of savages to ever pound a keyboard over at Rolling Stone Magazine) are just plain wrong.

When they put Hendrix as “the greatest guitarist” on a list, they do me a big injustice. It’s fucking personal! Alright! Seriously, it’s an injustice. I don’t want you to think I’m an egomaniac, but I’m pretty fucking positive that I play guitar better than Hendrix. I’ll prove it, too.

So isn’t this next guy. In fact, he’s got some connections to a number of other people on the list.

As a matter of those metrics, the ones that are important for “guitarist,” these people are all better than Hendrix. If they’d just called that list, “Greatest Rock Artist,” I’d never have a word to say.

Well, that’s not true. I’d argue that went to Jim Morrison, but I’d be willing to accept it’s entirely too subjective. This, on the other hand, is much less subjective.

This is about people who have put raw amounts of skill into the industry. This is about people who have formed entire genres. This list is about the true power players of guitar and masters of their instrument.

You’re still encouraged to like Hendrix. I do. I love to riff off his stuff. I can play Hendrix for hours. However, I’m pretty positive that I can play Hendrix better than Hendrix played Hendrix.

Also, listen to this while you read – I think you will understand. I have a lot of faith in you, my dear readers! I have lots of faith in you! You’re obviously smart, or you’d not keep coming back! So, give this a listen and read the next entry on our list.

Without further ado, here’s the next guitarist better than Hendrix! 😉
Continue reading “It’s time for the 14th guitarist better than Hendrix!”

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Lessons about performing, lesson seventeen: Use your own equipment! (Ed. Note: Now edited to claim it has bonus content!)

You know what I’m doing. If you don’t, holy balls. Seriously… (Ed. Note: This is long. You have been warned. This is so long, it’s retarded.)(Ed. Note: Can I still call something “retarded?” ‘Cause it’s fucking retarded.)

Click the magical blue link, to see what I’m doing. Basically, I’m telling you how to be a professional performing musician. Nobody else tells you. I might as well. I wasn’t doing anything better.

Y’know… The hardest thing, to writing these, is coming up with these damned intros. Seriously, they’re a pain in the ass. I never know what to say in them. So, you’ll get this:

The lesson I was going to share, I decided to first consult an expert and then I’m awaiting consultation with my lawyer. No, I’m not kidding. I want to tell you how to not die from electrocution, but I’m not sure I want to assume legal liability – or that any liability could be incurred.

So, if you never see that article, I have one word for you: Lawyer.

Also, if you never see that article, call a professional. Okay? I know you won’t listen, but I’m gonna be legally obligated to tell you that. Before drawing down 30,000 watts, ask a few questions from someone who knows what they’re talking about! (Ed. Note: This is why RSM is never gonna contact me to write for them. Good.)

That means you get this lesson – which isn’t substandard, it’s just not where it was meant to be. Sheesh!

(Also, I’m as shocked as you are that I’ve made it this far.)(Ed. Note: Me too!)
Continue reading “Lessons about performing, lesson seventeen: Use your own equipment! (Ed. Note: Now edited to claim it has bonus content!)”

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Things look very different from the stage; part two. I don’t know your name.

I wrote the first one and I’m still not exactly sure for whom I was writing or what the goal was. However, folks seemed to like it and I was told I should continue it.

Don’t worry, I haven’t forgotten any of the other two series. This is just something fun. I don’t know how long it will last, how frequent I’ll make these entries, but I have pretty much decided I’m going to try to share what it’s like from the other side – albeit from a very small-scale music professional.
Continue reading “Things look very different from the stage; part two. I don’t know your name.”

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So, you wanna learn how to play guitar?

I don’t have a good intro, so I’m just gonna tell you what I’m gonna do! I’m going to tell you some truth. You won’t like it. If you think I’m wrong, prove it. Prove to me you’re going to learn to play the guitar by learning to play.

Here’s a sorta lesson type thing.
Continue reading “So, you wanna learn how to play guitar?”

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