I went to see a good buddy of mine the other night play, Damon LaScott, who is an excellent guitar player and while listening to his playing I also really marveled at his guitar tone. Then it dawned on me... while I have heard some great guitar players that to me, did not have a great "sound" I don't think I have ever heard a great tone that wasn't being produced by a great guitarist. It is common said, although for the most part people don't REALLY understand this til they experience first hand, that most players guitar "tone" actually comes from how they play. Sure, every little piece of the chain plays into it...the guitar, the amp, pedals (obvious choices), the strings, picks, cables (yes, often debated but trust me....cables make a difference). But the REAL difference is the player. Again, hard to understand until you actually experience it but for example, I could plug Eddie Van Halen's guitar into Eddie Van Halen's amp and even play Eddie Van Halen licks and trust me, I am NOT going to sound like Eddie Van Halen...I am going to sound like Chris Dunnett trying to play Eddie Van Halen. Conversely, if Eddie Van Halen plugged my guitar into my amp he is STILL going to sound like Eddie Van Halen. Tone really come more from your fingers, how you hit the fretboard, and your picking technique. So the summation in my opinion is it doesn't mean that just because you hear a bad guitar tone that the player is not necessarily a good player but I'm pretty sure if you hear a great guitar tone you can rest assured you are listening to a great player
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Chris Dunnett is a multi-faceted Guitarist, Composer, Song-writer, Producer, Performer and Guitar Teacher
Chris' Blincoln Blogs
The movies Halloween and Jaws have always been not only 2 of my favorite movies but 2 of the scariest I have seen. Unlike a lot of blood and gore movies where everything is right in your face what makes these so scary is that you rarely see the villain (Michael Myers – aka “The Boogey Man” or the shark). “FEAR” is caused by that of the “unknown”. Think about it. If you knew absolutely 100% without a doubt that you could walk into a burning building and walk out totally unharmed, would you be afraid? Probably not. It is the “unknown” outcome which scares us. As musicians and song-writers it becomes many unknowns… Will I play the song right? Will I get the gig at this audition? Will they pick my song at the publisher pitch? It is these exact unknown outcomes which create fear in us. Fear can be a good thing as it warns us of something we need to prepare for but it can also paralyze us and create more problems if we don’t know how to handle it. I always try to face fear head on and just keep hitting that boogeyman or shark because the only sure way for them to get you is if you don’t fight back.
A valuable lesson for all musicians...be cool and be flexible. I played a wedding cocktail party and was asked to set up outside so I did got my sound check and everything together played 2 songs then they asked if I could move everything inside because the majority of the guests were not coming outside. Granted, they asked me earlier if that needed to happen if it would be a problem and I said no. One of the advantages of being a solo artist ;). The wedding started 20 minutes late and ran another 20 minutes over so I started playing 40 minutes later then contracted and they wanted me to finish what we had arranged, stop for a bit while they made announcements, and play an additional 15 minutes. I gladly obliged. Not only did they end up paying me nearly double what we had agreed on but the event planner was very happy amd appreciative of my willingness to go the extra mile and I will probably get more gigs out of it in the future. So... be cool, be flexible :)
In this day of Social Media everywhere many musicians have their presence on Facebook, YouTube, and many other sites as well they should. However, I (and about everyone else in "tha biz") feel musicians (and any business for that matter) should still have your own website. Why? 2 words...(or 1 depending on how you look at it lol) ... MySpace. Remember that? What happens if your only web presence is Social Media and that site suddenly disappears or just becomes unpopular? Bu-bye. Even if it is most likely to be around for awhile such as the 2 I mentioned above you are VERY limited as far as layout, customization, selling product, and very importantly...your BRAND. Most musicians or businesses (note...they really ARE 1 in the same) have a "theme" to their own site...colors, fonts, logos, etc. Most Social Media sites limit you greatly when it comes to this. But, an even bigger reason is so you can interact on a more customizable level with your customers...aka..fans. I am by no means belittling the use of Social Media but those should be a way to invite your audience to your home...as in home page ;)