Monday, April 28, 2014

Play in the Key of You!

So I've been seeing a lot of what I call "guitar jock" or music machismo out on the internet. What am I talking about? Well if you went into Google right now and went on any guitar forum half of all of the threads will be either "you're not a real guitarist unless you can play with this certain instrument with all of these certain parts." or "what parts/tubes/amps or lessons do I need to play like (insert famous musician here)?" Or go to any video of a guy playing his guitar or of a young girl and her ukulele playing music that they've practiced over and over for days. What you'll see in the comments of each one are these guys and gals that believe that unless you play a certain way, with a certain brand of guitar, then you're just a poser and the equivalent to the cowpies on the musical landscape.

Be the King of your own Musical Style
"Well, Dr. Fronkensteen," I hear you saying, "that's just the internet of course everyone is a bit more rude on internet comments." I would love to say that I haven't seen this out in the real world but I'm firmly convince that if you were in a room full of musicians at an open mic for every one guy that you saw that said "great set" you'd get four guys that would say "you played Hendrix on a Squire? What a cheap piece of junk!"

All of this gets me a bit irritated because I know at least in my narrative my Tourettes made it very hard to practice on traditional instruments and get my fingers to cooperate, and my bank account never allowed me to buy anything more than a "student model" guitar. I think that in a lot of people's mind is that if they throw a lot of money into an expensive guitar, like the kind that B. B. King plays, and if you take all of the internet tutorials to learn to play like him then eventually you'll be able to play good just like him. That's great if you're going to do covers of B. B. King songs all of your life. But at what point do you start letting your own artistic expression come out? At one point do you start sounding like you?

Do your own thing.

It's great to start out wanting to play like all of the artists that you respect. But if you go out trying to be the next Hendrix then you gotta get in line behind all of the other Handrix wannabe's out there. Why not be the first person in line to play like you? Try playing the best that you can and play the way you feel best. Play the music that makes you feel great on the inside and don't care about the people who call you a wannabe. Because you'll know that all you wannabe is yourself.

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