Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The Making of an EP: The single is out! The single is out!


Wow! I'm so excited! The single is out!!!

So: Here's the schedule of events. The CD is off at the record plant getting replicated. It should be out in about mid-September. In the MEANTIME, be sure to "like" my facebook music page, 'cause I'm gonna be putting another single out in the meantime!

Oh boy! Oh boy! What fun!

Rock on! And thanks for listening!

- Josh

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Mama said Knock You Out!

Hey rockers!

Us guitarists can be a fiercely competitive lot...most of the time! I've written philosophy on that before, but I've got an update. Check it: The vibe of competition has many elements that are useful, nay, vital to brilliance and success. Included are motivation, focus, energy, enthusiasm, and the prioritizing of the task at hand. Unfortunately, we usually use it to try to tear other people down to our level, instead of building ourselves above their level. Indeed, we confuse a positive difference between our level and theirs as a plus, without looking at the overall level. In plain English, a negative view would be: if I'm ten units better than him, I'm rockin'.

But if he's zero units, I need to step back and say "hey, I'm only ten units up the ladder!"

Much better would be to take aim at someone at say, fifty units, and strive to achieve sixty. I still get my contrast, and meanwhile achieve radical success.

Bad competition tears down to our level. Good competition builds up, and above, their level.

"Okaaaaaaaay" you might say, "but so what? How do I put this into practical application?"

That's what I'm excited about! I've been working really hard on my CD, and it provides a great venue to be competitive. If I see one of my peers really kickin' butt, instead of trying to discredit their success in my mind, or rationalize my lack of it (success, not mind!), or worse yet, take the YouTube way out, and slam 'em for a bad hairstyle, I now go back to my work with double focus!

Try it!

In the style of "Mama Said Knock You Out", Ahhh AAAAHH aaaahhh AAAAAh,

I'm gonna knock you out! Mama said knock you out!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Yah yah!

Hey Rockers!

So, what's the "right" way to play guitar?

I mean, I'm in the business of teaching, and everyone asks me that. I think I infuriate them when I say "well, any way that works!"

That's an idea that I'll stand by. I mean, let's look at a few historic examples: Blues, playing a minor scale over three dominant seventh chords. You gonna tell BB King that he's wrong?

Hendrix: By any earlier standards, his amps sounded broken. He sure gave stadium re-roofers a great gig, though!

Eddie Van Halen: Two hands on the fretboard? And what about that ratty guitar that's now going for 25K a replica?

You get the idea. There's many, many right ways to do something, especially if it's as general as playing music. How 'bout specifics, like what scale to play over what chord? One time, I was studying with three great teachers. I asked them a theory question, and I got three different answers. Finally, Mike Stacey, one of these teachers, said to me "Dude, there's three right ways to play it."

I've figured out two things for myself. Use 'em if you want 'em.

1. If it sounds good, it is good.
2. Concerning technique, look for the efficient way. And do that.


Now go make history!

Rock on!

- Josh
PS. Sometimes, things take a minute to sound good. I mean, I didn't like metal at first, and has anyone ever seen Back To the Future, where he plays Johnny B. Goode to a crowd of stunned nerds? So listen for potential, too.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Take note

For once,

I don't have anything to say.

This goes to show: anything can happen. Be inspired!

- Josh

Monday, August 2, 2010

The Making of an EP - steaming toward the finish line!

Hey hey rockers!

Whew, sorry I haven't been too much fun in the blogosphere! I've been spending any available minute in my studio mixing this CD down! It's SO CLOSE! I've gotten in touch with a mastering engineer (he comes highly recommended, and I'm thrilled to be working with him!) I've been burning CD's right and left, listening to them in my car, on the computer, etc etc tryin' to get that mix just perfect. Stupid bass guitar. Grrr....It won't EQ just right. I've been working in photoshop, getting the album artwork just right. I've been dragging my brother out of the house at night to have him take pictures of me wearing a 40's hat and wool coat looking somber in the back yard. But it is ALMOST there! And I CAN'T WAIT! I'm so excited! SO, once all this is done, I will a.) start writing some better blogs, and b.) send y'all a copy!

In the meantime...Before my next student walks in, here's something to think about:

Start a sonic journal. Try writing a song every day and record it, no matter how bad it is. Now, if you're not a musician and you're reading this, you can apply it to your field, too. If you're a writer: start a blog. If you're a ice sculptor...you might need some gloves, 'cause your hands will never warm up! But you get the idea.

Too often us guitarists overlook songwriting as stuff best left to people named Ani with really strange hair. (And this is coming from a guy named "Poodleman.") But NO! Start writing those epic metal songs! Mega shredding alone won't write the song for you.

Rock on!

- Josh