Guitar pickup naming conventions are horrible.

You have no idea how hard it is for me to not write an article about bells.

Seriously…

Not only do I want to write an article about bells, I want to use my nifty new stamp of approval and stamp bells with it.

You know what, you’re getting a story about bells – but I’ll try to keep it brief. (Editorial note: I failed at that.)

They took a bunch of bells, of various sizes, and crammed them into towers. Some of these are the largest and heaviest instruments – in the world.

To ring these bells, they’d put as many as 16 people on one side – whose job was to hold onto a beam and step, in something approximating unison, on another giant length of timber.

At the other end of that length of timber were as many as 16 other people. They’d ring the giant bell, by smashing it with a log.

In the bell tower, there are many bells of varied sizes – meaning some of them had more than 100 of the burliest people they could find, bouncing up and down on logs and ringing the bells.

The bell ringers were shitfaced for this.

There’s a trend.

Eventually, they’d ring the bells from outside with ropes. This would require burly men and a trip to the pub. Because these were burly men, the chicks came and watched.

It pretty much turned into a drunken fuckfest, I’m pretty sure. We’re humans. We’ve been having sex pretty much since we climbed down from the trees. It seems pretty likely that where there was sex, alcohol, and fit people playing bitchin’ solos on bells, people were getting fucking laid.

It gets better…

They eventually figured out how to change the way bells are rung, by using a stopper and allowing the bells to have two stop positions in the upright position. Lots of bells…

Except, they don’t make music with them.

No, this is called “change ringing.” It’s an activity currently enjoyed by about 40,000 people, across England – and even in some of her old colonies.

They’re not making music.

Change ringing is a game that’s been turned into a competition. It also explains a bit about bell tolling.

It has fucking rules – and it’s actually based on math!

Trust me – it gets even better. It seems simple enough.

You can ring each bell only once.
You must then ring a bell that is adjacent to it.
You may not repeat the pattern.

And, it’s a ton of crazy math that determines the variations that can be generated using a particular set of bells.

4 bells may have just a few mathematical solutions but adding bells increases the number of solutions in an exponential manner.

And they’d eventually add bells until there were millions of possible combinations – they add up quickly.

Now… I told you that, just so I could tell you this.

The bell ringing turned into glorious drunken escapades.

They’d frequently lock the vicar out of the tower, get shitfaced, and ring them some bells until they were good and done with their bell ringing.

To complete all the possible combinations with a tower with just seven bells would take something like 30 years.

The bell towers have signs, some of them, telling people to not piss on the church roof. See, the bell ringers would lock themselves into the towers – and they’d be getting shitfaced and ringing the bells.

Yes, bell ringing hooligans existed – and they were unsurprisingly common. After all, who doesn’t want to get shitfaced and ring some fucking bells?

One story tells us about a bunch of bell ringers who were bell ringing hooligans and went to town on a set of bells – eventually angering them enough to throw them in jail.

Like 30 days later, the vicar came and bailed them out – at significant expense. Why? Well, someone had to ring the fucking bells and the bell ringers were all in jail.

In other words…

They were pretty much rock stars and had reduced the act of playing a bitchin’ solo (and they did have their favorite combinations) to math!

They used math to find a way to play bitchin’ solos, get drunk, get laid, get paid, and have themselves a hell of a time.

And they did it with the biggest fucking instruments known to mankind.

Bells get my seal of approval. I want to encourage all of you to get drunk, sneak into a local church, and ring the bell(s) like it’s the greatest bitchin’ solo that ever did solo!

Get out there and ring some bells. Get right shitfaced and do it. It’s a noble tradition and everyone around for miles has to listen to it. The buildings are special places – you can barricade yourself in there and they probably will let you play yourself out and then arrest you. It’s not like they’re going to just smash the door down, it’s a church!

You’ll be able to plead that down to a misdemeanor, disturbing the peace charge. You can frame your receipt for the fine. You will have a wonderful story to tell of the day you played a bitchin’ solo on the church bells.

You could ask ’em, and they might actually let you ring the bell a few times. But, where’s the fun in that?

Some conductor decided he wanted to play a bitchin’ solo with the bells – from multiple towers. It was a very complicated affair – but he figured it out and did surprisingly well with a Greensleeves arrangement. I’ll show you, at the end of the article.

He got them to play chords and ring bells simultaneously. That was unheard of – after all, they’d had rules for ringing the bells and he was making them make music and not ring them in a mathematical pattern.

They claimed it was the first time anyone had done that – and they further claimed that they’d never played the bells more than one at a time – except for some very rare instances when they rang them all at once.

Bullshit.

There’s no fucking way a bunch of drunk people didn’t ring those bells in all sorts of fashions and combinations – some of them spectacularly awful. I guarantee someone tried to even sing with ’em. They were shitfaced!

Hmm…. Bell ringers were kind of like punk rockers.

I’m as sure of this being true as I am of anything. There’s no way in hell they weren’t trying to play bitchin’ solos on bells. And, I understand – and approve.

Gotta tell ya, getting shitfaced and locking myself into a bell tower until I got bored with playing the bells sounds a lot like it’d pretty much be the best day ever.

I can’t actually think of a much better day, unless it involves things that simply don’t exist – like my imaginary flying boat! (In my imagination, a flying boat is pretty much the best thing since fire-breathing monster trucks taking sweet, sweet jumps.)

The only thing better than that would be playing an old-school pipe organ powered by people manually laboring at bellows. I can produce high volumes of music and move some serious quantities of air – but nothing like a motherfucking pipe organ.

I have no idea how to play an old timey pipe organ.

Not a clue.

Don’t care. Still want to play one. If you happen to have an old-timey pipe organ, powered by human bellows, specifically of the size you see in giant cathedrals – you should invite me to come play it.

Wait, no… That’s a horrible idea. You should not invite me to come play it – but I’d appreciate it if you did and I promise to do my best not to cause permanent damage.

You know, just in case once of my readers happens to own a cathedral…

I suppose, I should get to my point…

There are so many ways to be passionate about music. Sometimes, we musicians gripe about things, but that’s because we’re passionate. What’s more passionate than locking you and some drunk friends into a tower so that you can ring giant bells while shitfaced? Not much, I’ll tell ya that right now! I haven’t even done it – and I’m certain it’d be a fantastic time.

So, my next bit is going to be me addressing another gripe, but it’s because I’m passionate. To me, these things suck.
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25… This is the 25th guitarist better than Hendrix.

I can keep doing this – for a long time. I get asked how long I can keep this list going, or similar, pretty much once a week. The answer is, “A long damned time! Hendrix was not that good, according to the metrics used.”

I also frequently get people who seem to think I hate Hendrix. I do not. Hendrix has a value and was a great asset to the instrument I know and love, something I’m pretty passionate about.

He just wasn’t a good technical guitarist, and that’s okay. He still made brilliant music – within his limitations. That’s okay. For all the novel things he’s credited with, he largely just put those together in a creative fashion and did so with a rather limited skillset.

The other day, I showed someone just eight notes of a scale and told them that there were infinite bitchin’ solos within those eight notes. If that makes sense to you, then it also makes sense that I absolutely love Hendrix. He just wasn’t a very technically adept guitarist.

I pretty much tell you this every week, you know. I’m pretty sure I don’t have to remind you – but I do, ’cause I get the same questions every week.

Yada yada… There’s a link in the upper right, it’s not up to date. Rolling Stone sucks. Most ‘greatest guitarist’ lists are horrible because they use shitty metrics. You know… The same shit I tell you every week!

I don’t have time for that nonsense! I want to write about my next guitarist.

This week, I’ve set myself a challenge! This one is going to be tricky to justify. As always, you are free to move ’em about the list – but I’m gonna provide justification for inclusion on the list.
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Behold, I have made an image!

You’re not getting a good article today.

I’ll give you something to read, but it’s not going to be good – or educational. It’s not even going to have anything to do with music – probably.

Do you see that image on the left?

It took me three hours to do that. Including trying to figure out a way to embed the image so that text flowed around it.

Obviously, I failed at that.

Even after figuring out how it was supposed to be done, it wraps exactly one line of text and then jumps to the bottom – meaning you get one single line of text next to the image.

But, that’s actually the end of a long story – and I’m just gonna tell you why you’re not getting a good article today.

First…

I searched and searched for a way to make actual public domain images using an web interface. I then tried to find one that already had a template for a seal of approval – what I really wanted.

There are no seal of approval generators that are any good. The one that I can figure out how to use, waited until I got to the end and told me I had to give them money.

It did let me get as far as saving them – and closing the tab. Being functionally retarded, I closed the tab – and didn’t actually check the saved images. I uploaded it by FTP and decided I’d better check the URL in my browser.

It had saved watermarks on it – lines right through the middle.

I went back and recreated it and it again offered me the chance to give them money and they’d have sold me a bunch of packages of images, including 3D images, that I didn’t actually want. I didn’t pay them.

I wish I had. That would have saved some time.

Eventually, I gave up trying to actually make a graphic. Surely, someone had made what I wanted and stuck it into the public domain.

Not really, no… No, it looks like nobody as quite done that. I was so tempted to just steal an image at this point.

I did eventually find an SVG that’d do – and it was in the public domain! Thank you, open source people – once again! However, it’s a stamp of approval and not a seal of approval. Beggars cant’ be choosers, so I was okay with this – sort of.

Except, I don’t actually know what to do with an SVG file. I know what an SVG is and I have a viewer. I know that I should know how to edit them – but fucked if I know what specific (Linux) apps can do this.

It’s SVG and there’s a tons of editors. Tons…

Not gonna learn that. Nope. We can scratch that right off the list of things I’m willing to invest time in.

I’ll just open it up and export it with my handy dandy SVG viewer app. It’s fucking Linux, I can do that.

They all changed the background black. I have no idea why.

Fuck… There went another forty five minutes as I tried all the viewer apps and debated installing something like InkScape.

Nope… Not installing InkScape – or GIMP. They’re too complicated for me and I’m not going to learn to use them.

I got the bright idea that there’s an online SVG editor. Surely, that has to exist! Off I run to Google…

Yes! They exist!

The first two, after finding them and waiting for them to load and jump through the very different mechanisms to upload my file, I discovered they’d not actually upload my precious SVG file.

By now, I’m getting pretty pissed at this process.

I tried one more. It took me forever to figure out their stupid fucking interface and then the fucking thing wouldn’t export as anything – no matter how many times I needlessly tried it again with slightly different settings.

Finally, I said fuck it – and I sure as shit said fuck it to actually caring that it had things like a transparent background.

I opened that SVG back up in my handy dandy image viewer – and took a screenshot.

I resized that and exported that bitch as a JPG! Fuck image creation.

I was then two and a half hours deep into the process already and I figured that’d actually been good progress – for me. I don’t do image generation. We’ve already figured that out, certainly by way of demonstration!

So, I was particularly pleased with myself – having finally reached the point where I just said fuck it. It was a pretty satisfying fuck it to say, actually.

I then figured I’d embed it in WordPress and wrap text around it.

It couldn’t be that hard, after all!

Lies! It’s horrible!

By the time I figured out the abstract lingo was not actually align to the left – but was actually to align with none… I then realized the fucking thing will only display one line of text as it “wraps” around it.

I could change CSS and fix it – but my CSS skills are just a wee bit worse than my image generation skills! Learning CSS is also something that’s just not likely to happen.

So, I spent like a half hour on that, before deciding I’d just set it as the “featured image” and call it good. To do it properly, they fucking want me to learn to do it in a special “child theme” that appears to be damned specific to WordPress.

I am not gonna figure that out. I’m sure as shit not going to figure out how to do that today. I already spent 2.5 hours.

And that’s why you’re not getting a good article!
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I did some work, so let’s learn about the harp guitar!

I hope you’re sitting down for this. If not, you probably should be – and you may want to add a shot of whiskey to your coffee.

You’re not going to believe this, but I both did some actual work and I haven’t even smoked anything today. Yet… I’ve got to talk to a local radio station later and I should probably not sound like I’m mentally handicapped.

I’m not kidding – I did some actual work!

What did I do? Well, it goes a bit like this…

This site’s articles get to just a few other sites. I probably should pick different sites to submit them to, but I enjoy submitting them where I do and I don’t see that changing in the near future.

On those sites, as regular readers know – but we sometimes get strange traffic from other sources, I kind of keep their guitar communities active. I tried doing so for math, but people are far more interested in music. I enjoy the increased amount of feedback and participation with regards to music instead of math, so music it is.

It was on one of those sites where a user named Timmy posted a picture of their guitar that they inherited. I believe they said it was 100 years old, but we’ll get to that – as it probably isn’t quite that old. You’ll see. It’s a grand adventure.

It’s pretty awesome and fairly unique guitar.

The guitar is something called a “harp guitar” and I know a little about them but, given that I mostly do covers for money, I’ve got zero good reasons to actually own one. Until now…

Alas, I am not a harp guitar expert. That’s okay, there are experts!

I didn’t just fine an expert. I found the expert. This guy literally wrote the dictionary definition.

I’m not kidding and I’m so grateful that they’ve given us their time.

Who is this expert? It’s none other than Gregg Miner.

Seriously, check out his credentials! (Really, check them out because they’re extensive.)

That’s right… Someone posted a picture of a harp guitar and I then went to find what appears to be the foremost figure for harp guitars, and bugged them! (I ain’t scared!)

From what I’ve seen on their site, they’re all seemingly nice people with professionalism and a careful study of the harp guitar. They’re building an encyclopedia and use phrases like this, “the first serious organological approach to these instruments.”

They’re scholarly. We giggle at innuendo. They write about the history of a luthier. We write about bitchin’ solos. They have gatherings. We have parties.

I even told ’em that it was for this site and they still helped! I don’t know what they were thinking. I even warned ’em that I’d be linking to their site!

No, in all seriousness, I want to extend a special thanks for the time they’ve invested and I’d absolutely love it if you became interested in a harp guitar. I’m really sure they’d love it even more than I do.

I will say that I’ve never really been interested in playing a harp guitar – until just the other day, when this mystery guitar appeared and I started digging into it.

I will also say that the person who originally posted a picture of their guitar probably didn’t expect this to be the result. But, it’s a bit of a mystery piece and many musicians love a mystery instrument. I count myself as one of them.

So, let’s get this started…
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Let’s talk some more about practicing and call it a lesson.

I’m pretty late getting this started, but I was using that time to type out a bit about playing a bitchin’ solo for someone, and then my coffee maker died. I don’t really have an acceptable alternative for making coffee and new coffee makers are a long ways away. This is a problem.

I really don’t feel like driving anywhere and I’m not sure I can con someone else into doing it for me. The missus appears to be having none of it, and I can’t think of any way to bribe her. Hmm… If I eat all the ice cream, we will need some more and that’s a reason to at least go as far as the village.

I really don’t want to have to go into the village – and I definitely don’t want to have to go all the way into Farmington, where I can buy a damned coffee maker. This is the second time it has broken in like three or four months.

How does this tie in with the subject? Well, I’m making excuses. I’m trying to talk myself out of doing something I need to do, or getting someone to do it for me. Just like that coffee maker isn’t going to magic its way to my house, that guitar isn’t going to learn to play itself.

And, I’m just like you… I can find excuses to not practice, just like everyone else. Hell, I’m old. I’ve been finding excuses to not practice for quite a number of years. Sometimes, I can think of a dozen other things I’d rather be doing, but that guitar isn’t going to learn to play itself and there’s a lot more that I can improve on and learn.

So, let’s talk about practicing and maybe a bit about excuses.
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Correcting the record: That’s not tremolo!

I’m hoping that this doesn’t turn into a rant. It could happen, but I’m going to try to maintain objectivity and civility. Try, at any rate.

There are a few subjects that I’m passionate about. As you can see, music is one of those subjects. And, unlike what some folks have accused me of, I don’t believe that music has to be a purely academic pursuit.

You don’t need to know what golpe means, or its history, in order to make use of it. You don’t need to know the technical names to make music. You don’t need to master music theory to compose good music. You don’t have to understand the wave form changes made by your effects pedals – you just have to stomp on the pedal.

But, damn it, that’s not a tremolo bar or a ‘trem block.’ It’s sure as shit not a tremolo system. It’s vibrato and yes, even manufacturers call them tremolo bars and systems.

I’ve written about this before, but that was before the site was up and running. I’m going to expand on it and attempt to correct the record. My efforts are largely going to be futile, but I can at least inform you.
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Reader Question Answered: About Writing.

I got a question! I like questions! They give me excuses to write stuff that I’d otherwise maybe not think of.

In the process of sharing the links elsewhere, I do encounter a lot of people and I get a lot of questions from them. They’re quite frequently about music and, more specifically, the guitar – but not always.

Today’s questions, plural, are actually paraphrased from bits of many conversations. It also don’t have a damned thing to do with either guitar or music.

As it has nothing to do with either of those two subjects, you’re probably wondering why I’m going to include it. The answer is, “I do what I want, bitches!”

No, the real reason is ’cause it was interesting and I thought you might like to have these answers. My answers seemed to satisfy them, so maybe you will enjoy them?
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Don’t just sit there playing with yourself!

As the title may illustrate, to an observant reader, I’m pretty much a giant five year old. And, once again, I’m sure you can deduce my mental state!

I feel as though I should offer some sort of reason for my mental state – but it’s definitely not an excuse.

They took the fun out of weed and made it legal. Seriously, legal weed is like decaffeinated coffee.

Wait… That’s a horrible analogy…

Legal weed is like buying beer after you’ve long since reached the legal age to do so.

That’s slightly better.

Which is to say, some of the magic is gone.

The only rational way to put the magic back in it, is to find a way to make it illegal again. See? I’m a man of sound first principles!

I don’t want to be too specific, but let’s just say I decided I’d grow a whole lot of pot last year. To put this in perspective, I could have 12 plants flowering at a time – legally. I exceeded that amount, significantly.

Harvest season nears again and I have an unusual problem. I have more pot than I can possibly smoke. Some people have already harvested their early stuff and people seem to just give me pot. Granted, one look at me and I’d probably offer me pot, but it was a pretty strange trait to adjust to when I moved here.

It might be selection bias, but I’m pretty sure most of Maine smoked pot before it was actually legal. I don’t think I know anyone who realized pot was legal and said, “You know, I think I’m going to start smoking pot.”

Nah… They all smoked it before it was legal. It was decriminalized, long before I moved here.

I realize that this might be because of the people I generally associate with – but I associate with quite a few professionals – but I don’t actually know many people in my area that don’t smoke pot. It wasn’t entirely uncommon to see someone smoking or partake myself, while walking down the street at a regular festival – even before it was legal.

They had whole hemp-celebrating festivals, long before it was legal. I know this, ’cause I’ve been on the stage at a few of ’em. They don’t actually hide them – they advertised the hell out of them. “Come on in. We’re gonna do a bunch of illegal drugs and jam!”

Which, you know, is a pretty good party. But, it’s legal now. I haven’t been to one of their festivals since.

I should mention that selling marijuana is illegal without special paperwork. But… You can give away up to two ounces. A whole lot of bartering is frequently referred to as gifting. Someone gifted me a whole bunch of fresh stuff recently and I can’t even (realistically) gift enough of my own to my friends and neighbors.

It’s a very unusual problem to have. On this subject, I’ll add that every musician should be reasonably adept at hiding and security a decent stash of excess drugs. That’s actually a fairly frequent problem.

See? These are things you don’t learn in a music book!

By now, you’re probably wondering why I’m telling you this. “Oh, TheBuddha is just stoned, again.” Which is true – but I have a point!

And, remarkably enough, my intro is even topical! You’ll see…
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Here we go again! The 24th guitarist better than Hendrix!

If you’re wondering how long I can keep this series up, let’s just say there’s a whole lot of guitarists that are better than Hendrix. I haven’t even gotten to the more obscure guitarists. This could take years, at the rate of one a week.

I ain’t scared.

I will say that I get far less negative feedback than I anticipated. People tend to defend the status quo and Hendrix is considered the greatest guitarist – by many people. They’re wrong, of course. I mean, come the fuck on… I’ve explained this 23 times already and in at least 100 different comment relies for the people who refused to actually read the damned article.

I told you that I wasn’t scared.

If you think Hendrix was the greatest technical guitarist then you’re wrong. Your the victim of horrible propaganda.

First, the term ‘greatest guitarist’ should refer to an objective criteria. Second, artistic value is not an objective criteria. Finally, technical ability (and a variety of previously covered metrics that further break it down) is an objective criteria.

The dirty rotten liars that are pundits and media have (mostly) all agreed that they’ll call Hendrix the greatest guitarist when Hendrix doesn’t always even rise to the level of very good. If you don’t believe me, listen to the entirety of his live material.

(I can go on like this, for hours…)

I think I’ve covered it enough times. I’m not even going to stoop to the level of insulting Rolling Stone magazine, specifically. Nope. We already know they’re a bunch of heathens who aren’t even qualified to edit a classified ads section! I don’t need to resort to falsehoods to tell you about them!

Rolling Stone was never really good – but they used to be better. Anyone who insists that Rolling Stone was once good, is probably suffering from something called “selection bias.” They remember the good articles, but not all the shit that they’ve published over the many iterations that are their history. They’ve made quite a few changes throughout their publication history, but I don’t really think that’s an appropriate topic for this site. So, I won’t get deeply into it. That’ll save some time!

I need to make something very clear.

I’m reaching the point where I’m no longer able to be completely objective.

These guitarists have one thing in common and that’s that they’re far more deserving of the title “Greatest Guitarist” than Hendrix was. I also quite enjoy telling you about guitarists that you probably don’t know about.

But, it’s really hard to say that one guitarist, at this level, was truly better than the next guitarist that also plays at this level.

Which is to say, I can’t really be certain that guitarist #10 is better than guitarist #11. I can’t say that guitarist #15 is better than guitarist #22 – at least not in any significant manner, that I could state with complete confidence.

So, if you don’t agree with my placement, you can switch ’em around. You can add other people to the list. You can write your own damned list, if you want. In fact, I encourage you to write your own damned list. But, for the record, this one is mine. I’m also pretty qualified to opine, and quite a bit of it is opinion.

Which brings me to my next guitarist…

I’m not really sure where this guy should go. He’s better than Hendrix, that’s for damned sure. But, does he go higher than other people on my list? Possibly not and I could see this argued either way. I can see legitimate arguments for a different spot on the list.

So, my placement of this artist is not truly objective.

I also have a clear bias in this week’s choice. I will disclose this.

I’ve been writing about obscure artists, quite frequently. This week, I want to tell you about a guitarist that you know about already, but you probably don’t know that much about him. We can all agree he’s pretty fucking awesome – and anyone that disagrees is wrong. That’s just fact!

So, come join me on my grand stoned adventure, while I tell you about the next guitarist on my list! (You knew damned well what you were getting into when you clicked the link. I ain’t even sorry, or scared!)
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It’s story time with TheBuddha!

That’s right… I’m gonna tell you a story! It’s not one about guitar history, a special guitar, or anything similar. No, this is one that I think needs to be told, ’cause the site has impacted quite a few people.

What do I mean by that?

Well, of those that I can disclose, this site has resulted in three people picking up the guitar to learn to play it. This site has resulted in five people who have picked the guitar back up and are now making an effort to learn to play it – because they’d given up before. This site, and some threads that I frequent or post, have also resulted in somewhere close to a dozen people who are now practicing and sharing their work.

And that’s just guitar.

And that’s just this one site.

Imagine if we all wrote about the things we’re passionate about, not just the guitar? Don’t tell me that you don’t have time to do that. I know how you spend your time! I know, ’cause I’ve been peaking in your windows!

Either way, it’s damned difficult to play a guitar well. It looks easy, but it’s not. Your fingers won’t want to behave and it’ll take a decade before you’re any good.

As near as I can tell, from personal observation – which is actually weighted to say the opposite – the vast majority of people who attempt to learn to play guitar end up quitting. As I run through my memory, I’d even go so far as to say that the vast majority quit within the first six months and finally admit they quit within the first year.

Keep in mind that my observations should be completely different. My observations are, as I said, weighted in favor of the opposite direction. After all, I’m a guitarist – and that means I’m more likely to meet people who have kept up with their learning. I’m also a good guitarist, which means people are more reluctant to tell me that they tried and quit. Ego makes it hard to admit those things.

So, I’d assume that I only learn about a small percentage of those who quit. Yet, they are the overwhelming majority of stories that I hear from people. It’s not easy. It requires dedication and effort. It requires discipline. It requires keeping your spirit up, even when you don’t think you’re getting any better and you can think of 1,000 things you’d rather be doing than practice those dumb scales over and over again.

For those of you readers who don’t play, there’s a reason I refer to what we do as “work.” There’s lots of reasons, including approaching it like a professional, but the primary reason is that we labor to get good. I don’t think there’s a single one of us that wouldn’t love a magic pill that’d make us instantaneously good – without the need to learn and practice.

Even after all these years and all this experience, I still practice every single day – with insanely few exceptions. Frankly, I’d be unable to present a good argument if you pointed out that my guitar playing was fiscally unwise, an objectively bad use of my time, and a mentally unhealthy obsession.

Today, I have practiced for two hours and I’ll rehearse (note that I keep those things mostly mentally separate) for another two hours. That’s an average day. That’s my schedule. That’s stupid.

My guitar student? She’s even worse. She’s practicing, on average, six hours a day – and then playing for another two or three hours per day. She already come downstairs and has been in my studio for an hour. She’s already asked a half-dozen questions. She’s already strung two guitars, giving one a complete cleaning and pulling out a light and mirror to inspect it.

I’m pretty sure a psychologist would point out the insanity of this and I’d be hard-pressed to argue with them. It’s not entirely unlike an addiction and we work obsessively hard to get good. It’s not easy and I can absolutely see why people would give up. Most people do…

So, I’m going to tell you a story – probably ’cause I want people to enjoy my addiction with me!

You’ve read about Django Reinhardt playing with just two fingers and a thumb and how he was set on fire by a malicious wagon and cellulose. Well, this is the story of a guy we’re going to call Mike.
Continue reading “It’s story time with TheBuddha!”

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