Sunday, February 5, 2012

My Axes pt. 3

During the mid 80s I decided I was through with live music for a while. Recording has always been where my heart is. I never wanted to be the movie star; I always wanted to be the director.

Fojammi had taught me lot about computer recording way before anyone else we knew was into it. Recording was within our financial grasp, but there was a lot to learn. We shared our wants with the software manufacturers and actually saw them realized.

We released our first post-Dominic recording as part of a collection of St. Louis artists called Urban Cabaret. The song was called Black Olive.

We experimented with a really crude mono sampling device controlled with a drum trigger pad. I really loved what we came up with but it sounded terrible. Poor Benet had to program his part on a drum machine and we hadn’t yet learned how to process the sounds.

Right about then, I decided it was time to get a guitar with a whammy bar. I actually walked into Dale’s Music in Hazelwood and swapped my beautiful Les Paul even for a $700.00 Fender Telecaster. It was an incredibly bad deal for me, but I was determined to have a whammy bar!

I loved the Tele’s neck and its pickups switched from single coil to double coil Humbuckers. It could sound like a Fender or a Gibson. In retrospect it was a good trade. I still have it and it does everything I need, especially now that I understand the correct use of amplifiers.

I always wanted to plug an acoustic guitar right into the recording deck. After a little research I bought a Canadian L. Baggs acoustic/electric. It looked like a Stratocaster. It’s the guitar I used in the Christmas YouTube video I made for my mom. It sounds great with a slide, but it hardly sounds acoustic.

I bought a $300.00 Greg Bennett acoustic at a guitar shop in Clayton, but it’s time to get a real one.

I’ve been using my son’s Alvarez in the studio. It’s like I came full circle.

Come to think of it, I’ve been using an old plywood Fender acoustic Steve Martin gave me years ago. I love that thing, but it doesn’t record well. I stopped changing strings on it over 5 years ago because it doesn’t make a difference. It’s a piece of junk I’m totally comfortable with. I write all my guitar stuff on it.

I always regretted giving up the Les Paul. Gibson gets in your blood. After a lot of research, I learned Epiphone’s Korean Les Paul used heavier wood than the Japanese one. Epiphone is Gibson’s low budget version, but Les himself let them use his name. I found a Korean one on Ebay and put real Gibson pickups on it. I got those on Ebay too. I love it. I figure I put together a $2000.00 guitar for $500.00.

Modified Epi Les Paul and Telecaster at the Wax Theatricks Reunion, current acoustic, Acoustic/Electric, and the junky Plywood Fender acoustic I love so much. You can just make out my son’s little half size nylon string acoustic behind it. It was his first guitar. I think he was three.


Anonymous said...

I still love playing your acoustic electric, but it's still the hardest guitar I've ever had to play. Also, I've just realized we forgot to take a picture of the Alvarez like you suggested.

Doggie said...