Archive for September, 2011
As promised, Scott Morris has recorded audio clips for all of the pieces in his book “Classical Guitar Complete: From Basics To Bach” and you can hear them all for free on his new website. While there you can also check out the videos that we shot with Scott which break down some of the pieces and techniques covered in the book in great detail.
My friend Jon Connolly has been my Pro Tools guru for years now. I had a meltdown in the studio a few years back the night before a big session and he came and cleaned it all up in no time and taught me a lot in the process. Now I have him come once a year to clean everything up and I’m still learning tricks from him. Jon’s also the guy who volunteered his time and gear to record our recent event with Pepe Romero Jr. and Sr.
On November 5th Jon and Brian Carter, another certified Pro Tools specialist, are teaching a Pro Tools ‘Jump Start’ class in Burbank. It’s an 8-hour class covering system set up, recording, editing and mixing (including routing and plugins). Each student has his own Pro Tools rig to learn on. If you want to get started on Pro Tools, just get a lot more proficient, or are transitioning from another DAW, I highly recommend Jon and this is a great way to dive in. Class is $195 including lunch, and you can get more info here.
For as long as I can remember, the AFM (American Federation of Musicians – the musicians’ union) has been trying to get congress to pass something about allowing us to get our instruments on planes. Of course, now that it costs money to check bags, airlines have a further reason to want us to check our guitars, and no one wants to check anything, so there’s even less room in the overheads on most flights. Check out the petition that the AFM is asking us all to sign and see if maybe this is one petition you want to get behind. You can see it and/or sign it here.
My tips for getting a guitar on the plane: Don’t mention your guitar at the gate (or better yet, do e-check in), and if someone asks, just tell them you want to gate check. Make sure you’re one of the first to board, so that there’s still plenty of room in the closets and overheads and the attendants aren’t yet harried trying to make room for everyone’s carry-on – they’re less likely to make you gate check at that point. Be as friendly as you can, and don’t let them upset you, because once you lose your cool your guitar is as good as checked. And finally, know that most of the danger to your guitar comes between the check-in desk and the plane, and then between the plane and the baggage carousel, so if you’ve gate checked in a decent case you’re probably fine. But that ‘probably’ never sits so well….
With the change in seasons comes a change in humidity levels in most parts of the country, and that can potentially be a problem for your guitar. Here’s an article on what you can do to ensure that your guitar stays at the proper humidity level to avoid cracks and that weird thing where suddenly the frets are scratching up your hands because they’re sticking out from the fretboard. Or maybe you never lived in an apartment in Boston with steam heating…
I asked my friend Ed Trybek to record a couple of guitars for us and he was kind enough to oblige, and we recorded the guitars at my studio. Here he is playing Albeniz’ ‘Granada’ on a 2011 David Whiteman maple guitar and Carcassi’s Etude #3 on a 2011 Lucas Martin (which should be up on the site very soon).
We had a feeling that Scott Tennant might want to check out the new cedar-top Daniel Friederich that David brought back from Paris, and fortunately for us we were right. Scott recorded his beautiful arrangement of ‘Wild Mountain Thyme’ and ‘Italian Dance’ by Hans Neusidler. Big thank you to Scott for making the time to get such a lovely recording of this guitar before it left the shop.
We got another nice review of Valseana, the CD we recorded with Marc Teicholz on 18 historic guitars, this time in Acoustic Guitar magazine. Check it out here: Acoustic Guitar: Waltzing Through History.
We currently have a 1952 Hauser I that would appear to be the one of the last ones, if not the very last one, that he made before his death that year. Along with the guitar we have the original correspondence between Hauser I and the original owner of the guitar, as well as a letter from Hauser II informing him of the death of his father.
Some of the things about this that I find interesting include the price of the guitar with case, which was $270 -adjusted for inflation that comes out to about $2300. Also, I like that Hauser spends more time describing the case than he does the guitar (though I imagine they discussed the guitar at some earlier point). And not only were bass strings 25 cents each, but apparently Hauser made them himself.