I have been playing the guitar for over 30 years since the age of 14. In addition to the pleasure I have had over the years with the guitar I've also had some opportunies to make some extra money, gain minor notoriety & express myself artistically. I was fortunate to grow up in the "heyday" of the electric guitar when Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page & in general guitar-oriented music burst onto the scene.
I played guitar in bands performing "cover tunes" for 26 years & became quite proficient & professional at it before retiring from performing in 1996. Although in my early days in high school the pay was very meager & in college we played at parties most of the time for nothing, eventually as I reached adulthood I played in bands that provided steady earnings. I have played the local bar scene, small concerts, dances, private parties, weddings, barmitzfas & you name it, mainly in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area & the Southern Maryland area. It provided for both the money needed to purchase my 1st home & savings for my sons' college education.
I have dabbled in the recording of "original music" of both others & my own since my senior year in college. I have over 20 cassettes of original material that I have played guitar on which includes both inspired "jam sessions" & demo-tapes. I have had my own "Home Studio" since the early eighties even though it seems to be a breeding ground for gremlins. I have done some "session work" for other musicians' "demos" despite the fact that this area is a poor place for budding musicians. I have played on a number of songs that received very limited airplay on the local radio stations. However, I did play guitar on 2 jingles which did get a bit more. Most notable was that I played lead, rhythm & bass guitar on a "Clinton Cycle" commercial in which my lovely wife did the vocals that received heavy airplay for about 2 years on DC 101 & what used to be T.V.'s Channel 5 in Washington D.C. before FOX took it over. I also wrote & played a guitar instrumental called, "Southern Maryland Swing" that was used as the opening theme for a bowling show on the local cable station Chascovision for about a year.
"My Recording Experience"
Being left-handed & playing on a right-handed guitar was advantageous for me since the majority of the physical work when playing lead guitar on an electric is with the left & fretting hand. I took 2 &1/2 years of guitar lessons...just enough to learn the basics & to read music. I then developed my repertoire of guitar licks from listening to records of the best rock guitar players. Eventually my listening expanded to include other types of music. The style didn't matter to me as long as the music was guitar-oriented. My guitar playing style can best be described as eclectic. I consider myself a "pop guitarist" whose style covers rock n'roll, the blues, jazz, fusion, latin & country with some classical & flamenco touches. 2 styles of music that I never cared about & never had much of a desire to play are bluegrass & pre-Eric Clapton rock n'roll although I can play the later style but reluctantly.
I originally started my playing on a cheap $20 dollar acoustic before moving on to a used $40 dollar Kingston electric. Eventually I was fortunate enough to buy a used 1964 Fender Stratocaster for about $80.00 from a fellow player who was desperate for the money. It was stolen while I was in college but the insurance money covered a new 1973 Fender Stratocaster that was to be my main guitar throughout my years of performing. I have performed "live" & recorded with many other guitars including 12-strings, a Martin D-3, Gibson Les Pauls, Gibson SG's, Gibson Les Paul Jr.s & Fender Telecasters. However, my own guitars are those listed below:
- 1972 GIBSON ES-335 TD with stop-tail piece installed by Danny Gatton
- 1973 FENDER STRATOCASTER with Dimarzio SD-1 pick-ups
- 1981 GUILD D-55 acoustic with pearl inlay & gold-plated hardware
- 1990 GIBSON ES-335 DOT
- 1991 FENDER STRATOCASTER Eric Clapton Signature "Blackie" model
1972 GIBSON ES-335 TD
1973 FENDER STRATOCASTER
1981 GUILD D-55
1990 GIBSON ES-335 DOT
1991 FENDER SIGNATURE STRATOCASTER
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