Just wanted to wish everyone out there a Happy 2009!
Music bumper from “Under the Stairs” by Sonic Deviant. (33:43)
Merry Christmas, everyone! I recently purchased a Line 6 Pod Studio GX, so being in the Christmas spirit, I went ahead and pulled down my jazz fakebook yesterday and gave this classic a go to try out the Line 6 unit (I've had a few problems with it in the connectivity department, but it sounds awesome otherwise).
Everything was recorded through the GX using Pod Farm and into Logic. The guitar I used was my Epiphone Performer SE acoustic (all through the pickup); it has two pickups, and one is in the neck so I can get a neat, jazzy sound. For the fretless bass, I used my fretless guitar and then just dropped it down an octave...can't believe how much it sounds like an acoustic bass! The drums are Beta Monkey's Jazz Essentials.
The photography was taken at my parent’s cabin in Colorado and most of the editing was done in Houston, Texas. The notion of this pyramid movie is to fade the comparisons between the holidays of the winter solstice: Christmas, Hannukah, Yule, Duali, Kwanza, and most importantly - Oshnaqua. Send the link to all your friends.
Show notes: Tyson Moore:
ICEHOUSE game pieces by andrew looney / looney labs - www.looneylabs.com
The song “Silent Night” performed by Sonic Deviant - www.sonicdeviant.com
If you're going to be in Denver, come out, donate, and hear some great music from my friend Neil Haverstick!
Sunday October 12, 2008
CCO Benefit Series at Trinity
Trinity United Methodist Church
18th & Broadway, Denver
Neil Haverstick, microtonal guitarist
J. S. Bach: Brandenburg Concerto No. 3
Neil Haverstick: Spider for 19 tone guitar and orchestra (arranged Blomster)
Bartok: Music for Strings, Percussion, and Celeste
FREE (Donations accepted)
Shane's old tune East Wind Blows West was recently featured on Close of the Eleven #19 of TaraChannel! out of Japan. Thanks very much for the play!
The studio has been completely upgraded with a new Mac Pro Quad Core 2.8 GHz system, a Samsung SyncMaster 220wm LCD monitor, and Logic Studio (Logic Pro 8).
GtrOblq represents a confluence of forces within the world of avant guitar and experimental string music. From the wreckage of the Kronosonic movement, GtrOblq aims to focus the popular imagination upon the obscure universe of creative sound production, recording, and performance. The artists profiled at GtrOblq are among the finest composers, improvisers, loopers, microtonalists, noisicians, soundscapers, sound designers, fretless guitarists, and synthetic guitar wranglers.
"The Unraveling Begins" is a seminal compilation produced by fourteen of these varied, talented artists.
Number of Tracks: 14
Disc Duration: 43:27:02
UPC/EAN Code: 7202178000180
Available now at CDBaby.com!
I recently sold my beloved Ibanez JEM77FP, mainly because I never played it much; it was one of those guitars that I practically put on an altar in equipment-lust homage, obeying the commandments of some bizarre cultish ritual to which we musicians are occasionally subject. The problem for me is that I'm a player--I've never been good at collecting guitars. I do much better PLAYING good quality guitars that I don't mind putting a ding on every now and then. So I sold the JEM to a really nice guy in PA (who is already worshipping the JEM the way I did) and used the cash to buy two great guitars and modify a third.
First, I bought a used 2006 Fender American Deluxe in Montego Black; it's a great sounding and looking guitar that needed only minor setup. Then, I ordered the gear from Stewart-MacDonald to convert my Fernandes Retrorocket X (with Carvin electronics) into a fretless. And then, I ordered a Carvin Bolt-T kit with a classic tweed case.
Key word is "kit," for it needs assembly and adjustment. So, I figured that this would be harder than it looked. Well, the assembly was a breeze. The adjustment was more difficult, as this was the first time that I ever dared to touch the truss rod in a guitar. But I had no choice; there was a tremendous reverse bow on the neck after I got the strings on, so it had to be done.
I need to say a word about Carvin's increasingly poor customer service. I've been a Carvin customer since the mid-90s, and my main stage amp is a Carvin 200SXD (a powerful twin). When I bought the amp, my first one blew up and they immediately sent me a new one and even paid for return shipping (BTW, my Carvin amp is nearing a decade in age and still blasts heads off regularly).
Well, I just ordered a kit guitar (on 15 April) that required a basic paint job. Again, "kit" means that Carvin did not have to assemble it. It took an amazing 8 WEEKS TO RECEIVE THE GUITAR, even though the fellow on the phone told me 4 to 5 weeks!!! I could understand 8 weeks if I had ordered a fancy neck-through-body guitar with spectacular finish options, but this was a kit with the most basic paint job. I sent an email at 6-weeks asking for a status and received no reply. So I called at week 7 and spoke with someone; he took my number and said he would call the next day with a status, and he NEVER CALLED BACK. I didn't get too mad, as the guitar came in the following week. So be warned: Carvin seems to be having a customer service crisis at the moment.
I should add that the guitar has a few, minor cosmetic flaws, but nothing worth sending it back over. I'm very pleased with the quality of this instrument, especially considering that I plan to beat it to death over the coming decade. In short, I think it was worth the wait, though I think the wait was silly and unnecessary.
Anyway, here's a photo journal of the assembly process (more photos here).
This is what the box looks like when you open it. Instructions right on top!
I had them paint my body for me...matte Classic White! (one small blemish in the finish)
The beautiful neck (one small flaw on the ebony fretboard - side piece facing the bridge).
Pieces and parts! Awesome Wikinson tremelo and Sperzel locking tuners.
Classic tweed case (also made in USA).
Had to make my inscription.
Installing the Dunlop strap locks.
Cavity shielding...reminded me of the material they use on satellites and other space vehicles.
Nerve-racking part: Hammering in the tremelo posts.
Putting on the spring claw.
Installing the neck.
Pre-wired pickguard. No soldering required.
Voila! Now strings and adjustments.
My collection...the Fernandes fretless, Carvin Bolt-t, and Fender American!
So my really talented buddies over at gtroblq.com have managed to instill such a lust for microtones in me that I decided to take my beloved (albeit, cheap) Fernandes Retrorocket X and convert it into a fretless guitar. Now, I'm no luthier and depend heavily on folks who've already done this sort of thing to keep from screwing it up too badly.
Unfretted.com (Jahloon's famous site) has several DIY articles, including the one I mostly used (courtesy of Emre Meydan) to get this project accomplished. I also sought and received advice directly at the gtroblq.com forums.
I decided to post my photo journal of the process (complete photos without commentary available here), so that I might offer my own personal experiences with this relatively easy project.
BTW, I've been playing fretless now for just over a day and I love it. If you're a guitar playing veteran of many years like me, I recommend giving it a try. (Beginners might be a little more frustrated; I recommend starting on a fretted guitar or doing both at the same time).
1. Heat up the fret with a soldering iron, carefully. I would do this until I saw glue seep out from beneath the fret.
2. Use fret pullers to gently remove the fret, starting at one end of a fret and working all the way to the other end. I experienced no significant chipping by doing this slowly, after heating each fret well.
Close-up view of fret removal.
3. Defret complete!! That part was pretty easy.
So long, frets!!!
4. I used links provided by Chris Shaffer to explain how to remove the nut. Here was my first (and really only) problem. When I attempted to gently tap out the cheap, plastic nut, it broke into 3 pieces, and I chipped a small piece of rosewood out of the nut slot! Oops! Fortunately, the piece of rosewood was in one chunk which fit perfectly back in its place, and I had also bought a new graphite nut from Stewart-MacDonald!
Enter the 2-ton, 60-min Epoxy! Not only would I use it to repair the nut slot, but I would also use it to fill the fret slots too!
The new graphite nut I bought from Stewart-MacDonald (bought mainly to aid sustain but now quite necessary to finish the job, considering the original, broken nut)!
5. Mixing the epoxy THOROUGHLY! I should add that I used a razor to clean out the fret slots before proceeding!
6. Using toothpicks to apply epoxy to the slots. This took a while, and I ensured a good application by running the tip of the toothpick along the slot until the epoxy flowed in and along it completely. I eventually used a styrofoam plate to prepare my epoxy (to keep from using old epoxy in subsequent slots).
7. The chipped nut slot glued back together without any problems using the epoxy!
8. Guitar is taped up and fretboard ready for sanding, using grades of sandpaper from 80 to 320 or so. Note the 14" radius block purchased from Stewart-MacDonald and the double-sided tape.
9. Sanding was the toughest part. First, I used the rough sandpaper (80) to remove all traces of excess epoxy. Once I could no longer see any epoxy, I progressed through the grades of sandpaper systematically, ensuring a smooth finish.
Wear gloves and other protection, because rosewood dust can be irritating.
Progress! (Please be okay, strat!)
I also sanded the sides of the neck too, to remove excess epoxy.
Sanding the outside of the nut slot made it hard to tell it had ever chipped.
Voila! Sanding complete! It's a fretless!
10. I removed all the protective masking tape and cleaned up all the rosewood dust (using a vacuum cleaner)! Next, I sanded down the bottom of the new graphite nut, and I lightly sanded the interior of the nut slot to remove any old glue. Then I installed the new nut and new roundwound strings (I didn't glue the nut in this time...I want to be sure it was not too high before gluing it). When I glue it with the next string change, I'll use a few drops of regular wood glue (so that I can remove it again easily if ever necessary).
Playing my new fretless! It was love at first touch and first sound!
UPDATE: Here's a sample of what it sounds like!
Though it's cool they used a bit of my tune as a midway transition, the coolest part is that I really like their podcast. Very funny stuff. In this episode, they discuss rough vaginas (lol).