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Category Archives: Music

Buying Vinyl Records

You will also find that the vinyl can give you a certain style which is beneficial. They are very slim and yet large is overall size, but this can make them the perfect choice based on your storage solution. You will find more vinyl on a shelf than you will CDs and if you are looking at building a collection and having an extensive range of genres to enjoy, then vinyl may be the way to go now and moving forward.

The great thing when you buy a vinyl is you have a physical copy of the song or album that you enjoy. While downloading music is great and convenient and sometimes more affordable, you never have a tangible item you can touch and read. With a vinyl you get that item, you can read through the song list and make your selection.

Of course you are investing is what today is considered “vintage.” Vinyl were the top choice for music up to around the late 1970’s when cassette tapes all became the rage. While they may be considered a vintage item, they are increasing in popularity again with turntables being readily available in a number of stores around the world.

The final benefit you may not be aware of is that you can enjoy a good return on your investment when it comes to vinyls. Bear in mind that these can scratch, but if you can get your hands on a superior quality record and hold onto it for a couple of years, you will find it is worth more in the long run. This is ideal for those who are looking to build up their collection.

There are some very important factors to take into consideration when you buy vinyl, especially when buying online. One of the biggest problems faced with records was scratches and to find a record without a scratch is not going to be an easy task. This is why its imperative that you only purchase from a reputable company that is managed by an enthusiastic team of record traders.

Take the time to learn as much about the company as you can, this means reading online reviews, reading their about us section and identifying their turnaround and delivery times. See if the company offers a returns policy and their take on customer service.

What is more important is that you need to know you are dealing with a real company that is operated by real people, which is why you are going to want to search their site for a phone number and physical address. Take the time to pick up the phone and speak to one of their representatives before making the decision on whether to buy a vinyl from them or not.

Jazz Guitar Standards

Kenny was lucky to have a musical background. His father was a banjoist, his mother a pianist, and both brothers were guitarists. Many of Burrell’s friends at the Miller High School in Detroit were musicians including jazz pianist Tommy Flanagan and bassist Calvin Jackson. His music director at school was Louis Cabrara and he proved most influential in helping to form Kenny’s musical career. It is intriguing to note that other ex-pupils of Miller High School were vibraphonist Milt Jackson and saxophonists Yusef Lateef and Pepper Adams.

Kenny Burrell’s early heroes were jazz guitar players Charlie Christian and Oscar Moore. By 1948 he already was well-respected in his area for his guitar skill. He played in lots of groups in the Detroit area including a spell in 1951 with trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie at the Club Juana. In 1955 he led his own group, then left to replace jazz guitar player Herb Ellis in the Oscar Peterson Trio. Burrell stuck with Peterson for only 6 months and then left Detroit to settle in New York.

After showing up in New York in 1956 Kenny Burrell was first contracted by pianist Hampton Hawes. Burrell did spend some time playing with Broadway theater orchestras (including the popular programs “Bye Bye Birdie” and “How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying”) but managed to keep a continuous professional career in jazz for almost eighteen years on the East Coast.

From 1952-53 Burrell studied the classical guitar with Joe Fava and now often includes this method of playing as part of his jazz concerts. He also decided to study music theory and composition and in 1955 acquired his Bachelor of Music degree from Wayne State University. In 1957 he performed with Benny Goodman’s orchestra.

Kenny Burrell’s interest in promoting the guitar is seen by his participation for a number of years with a jazz club in New York called “The Guitar”. This venture, unfortunately now closed, was the brainchild of fellow Detroit musician Fred Hayes with whom he had actually studied at Wayne University.

In 1973 Burrell moved to Los Angeles where he ended up being actively involved with studio work. At the very same time he also preserved a rigorous schedule of jazz club, concert appearances, and teaching which continues to this day. Since 1978 he has taught the History of Jazz and American Music at UCLA during the winter season term.

While Kenny Burrell’s most remarkable jazz recordings are from several decades earlier, he continues to be one of the most well-respected jazz guitar players on today’s scene. He has won lots of jazz publication readers and critics polls and continues to record regularly. It is said that Duke Ellington let it be known that Kenny Burrell was his favorite jazz guitar player!

Tom Hess Guitar Lessons

Immediately I noticed a review of Tom Hess’s guitar lessons by Mike Philippov. I’ve seen his guitar playing in several videos on YouTube, and he can really play. In his review, Philippov talks very highly of Hess and makes a very convincing case – Hell, with those kind of chops, he must be doing something right.

After Google, I tried YouTube. I got many results, but the one at the top was a video with tons of reviews by actual Tom Hess guitar students. A lot of people seem to have really benefited from his lessons, and many of the can really play.

In the end, I felt pretty intrigued by all the positive results people were receiving. I found other results with negative things to say about Hess, but they all came in the form of “I can’t stand Hess”, “I hate Tom Hess” and so on. Not much for me to go on there, but then again, I tend to steer clear of blind, vitriolic internet hate.

Quick Review: Tom Hess’s Music Career Mentoring Program

The first Tom Hess music careers mentoring program review I came across was by someone named Lee Gattenby, a guitar teacher in Alaska. Seems he has built a pretty nice teaching business for himself and released his own music. Not bad… I continued searching…

Next, I found what seems to be an interview with Tom Hess about music career advice. Not so much a music careers mentoring program review as it is Tom debunking various music career myths. Very insightful though – worth a look.

Mix Your Songs for Radio and TV

Only high quality music is played on radio and TV; therefore, you should ensure that yours if of high quality. If you don’t have the production skills you should ensure that a professional handles the production part. In addition to ensuring that the music you produce is of high quality you should also ensure that the sound quality is good.

Remember that many people listen to radio through cheap car speakers, ear buds and boomboxes. This means that if your song won’t come out great on these devices, many listeners won’t be pleased with it.

To ensure that your song sounds great on these devices you should play your music using different devices and listen to how it sounds. For example, you should patch the music into car-stereo speakers or bookshelf speakers. You should also dub the mix to a CD and play it through PC speakers or boombox. You should then listen and adjust it accordingly. Experts recommend that you should mix at nominal volume level. This is to ensure that you are able to hear all the parts clearly.

When recording the music you should avoid cluttering it. This calls for you to focus on the main ingredients such as the guitar, bass, rhythm, and percussion. As rule of thumb you should use the right instrument at the right place.

When it comes to vocals, ensure that the lead vocal is good and prominent. This is to ensure that the listener doesn’t strain to hear you above the backing track.

Info of Guitar Accessories

One of the most important things is spare strings. Why? Because the original strings will only last so long and when they break, that’s it. Having the right strings on hand will mean you simply exchange the broken one for a new one and you’re back strumming in no time.

Another important thing to have is a good strap. This is especially important if you will be standing up to play, but it also keeps the guitar stable and easier to play. Along with this is strap locks, again, very important as you don’t want your guitar to fall off the strap and break. These are super cheap but can help you avoid potential disaster and a costly fix to your instrument.

Finger picks are something every guitarist needs. The experts say to start with the thinnest you can find and gradually work your way up to determine the one that you like the best. Picks can break so it’s always a good thing to have plenty on hand and hey, when you’re famous you can throw them to the crowd after a show, so make sure you have extras!

A tuner is a great thing for beginner guitarists to have as it makes your guitar play in tune as opposed to sounding terrible. A tuner sits on the neck of your guitar and tunes your strings so that you always sound great. Another thing that attaches to the neck of your guitar is a capo and it is used to change the pitch of open strings. It changes the key and is a great help especially if you are singing as well as playing. Always stay in key and in pitch.

Revolution Radio

The opening track ‘Somewhere Now’ sounds as if it belonged on ‘American Idiot’ as opposed to its follow up 5 albums later, but this is not necessarily a bad thing. Especially considering the latter album hit number 5 on 2005’s global album chart amongst winning them many awards in the process. In fact the song is very strong, although risky to open up their ‘comeback’ album with a slow beginning, the switch to the homely feel of guitars, drums, bass and harmonies that every Green Day fan across the globe is used to is a one of a kind feeling. But its more than just an opening song to another Green Day album, it’s a statement, and it screams “We are back, and the revolution is on.”

‘Somewhere Now’ is abruptly followed by a scorcher of a single, and in fact the first single from the album; ‘Bang Bang’. The opening line samples a news segment on executions. If that doesn’t get your attention immediately, the punk riff ripping through your ear drums sure will, and any veteran Green Day fan will gleam ear to ear when the nostalgia of ’39/Smoothed Out’, ‘Kerplunk’ and ‘Dookie’ kicks in with every punk-esque guitar strum and smashing drum beat ripples from your speakers. I say speakers, as earphones will not do this song justice. It’s message – it’s a Green Day song, of course there’s a message – I hear you ask? Stop gun culture in America. Holy c*ap. Using this album to try and pull back any relevance they have left before they just have to give up is suddenly no longer seeming to be such a plausible excuse for its release. They’re making a stand, and using the excuse of it being an attempt to regain relevance as a mirage to cover their revolution.

The title track comes 3rd on the track list, and ultimately falls under the influence of semi-successful album ’21st Century Breakdown’. With a euphoric sounding vocal line, the song is a master class in teaching sceptics that Billie Joe Armstrong can still sing. The guitar still rips through all sound barriers, really forming an opinion that this is the world’s best rock band back at its finest. The following track ‘Say Goodbye’ almost excitedly parades an influence from the likes of ‘The Black Keys’ with its bluesy feel and multiple breaks, with a strong vocal line from BJ Armstrong again, this one is definitely set to be a fan favourite as the album ages.

‘Outlaws’, the next track on the album, is another tease at maybe an acoustic song throughout its intro, though yet again we are refused another masterpiece like ‘Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)’. Although that isn’t to say that yet again this album has produced a high quality song. Its slower than the previous tracks, and again falls into more of a rock-opera genre than the punk feel that ‘Bang Bang’ menacingly hinted at. Then, out of nowhere, appears ‘Bouncing Off the Walls’. It strikes like a golden snake, catching you almost dozing after the dreamy sounds of ‘outlaws’ before it. Punk is back in question, you can hear each power chord played and BJ’s voice crackles like it did back in ‘Dookie’s finest songs. What a time to be a Green Day fan, what a song and what great listing choices by the boys to place this belter of a tune straight after the slow melodic vibes previous to it.

‘Still Breathing’ again teases at an acoustic song at first, though there is yet again little disappointment in what follows the vocal led intro. The bridge and chorus of this song represent what Green Day have always been; amazing musicians and talented people all round. You seriously don’t have to be a Green Day fan to enjoy this track. Tt appears some mystic pop music demons have been summoned to give this track a real good aura and for that I think this song may be one of the greatest on the album. It feels catchy and has a foot taping vibe that will get even the biggest music snob humming along.

‘Youngblood’ is a classic Green Day song, a seemingly depressing song by its open line “She’s a loner” displayed with upbeat drums and guitar creates a Green Day sound we are all very used too. It’s a love song at its heart, take ‘Give Me Novocaine’ from ‘American Idiot’ and mix it with the upbeat instrumental of ‘Dookie’s ‘basket case’ and you’re halfway to this songs ear shaking sound. The problem with ‘Too Dumb to Die’ is that there is little new about it, it sounds like a weird concoction of all the previous songs, and it isn’t a great one. It still is good, it’s not ear bleeding awful, but it isn’t exactly ‘butterflies in the stomach’ great, unlike some of the previous songs on this album. Which unfortunately makes this the albums one and only pitfall.

The next track ‘Troubled times’ is another slower paced track, with Tres Cools drums providing the clear lead throughout. The chorus picks up pace and a glorious guitar riff catches the mind of any listener and again screams “We’re Back”. ‘Forever Now’ is a real pop-punk anthem, with the typical chords and strum patterns mixed with overlaid vocals, breaks and catchy lyrics – a long with a couple ad libs – this song is a great showing of all the members talents, including Mike Dirnts typically fantastic bass playing skills.

Finally! We have an acoustic performance from Billie Joe Armstrong, and my god, its spectacular. His voice sounds clearer and better than it ever has, and it snatches the title of the bands greatest acoustic song straight from the hands of the previously mentioned ‘Good Riddance (Time of Your Life0’ without little thought for its predecessor. This will definitely be a crowd pleaser across arenas the world over. It has a guitar line that is impossible not to sway side to side to. This song is Green Day at their very best, which I know is harsh to say when BJ is the only member of the band involved, but still, every time I listen to it it’s like the first time. That is so hard to capture in a song, but it’s everything that should have been expected from this album, and all the intros that hinted at it along the way through the albums track listing created a hype that the song truly lived up to.

Acoustic Guitar Buying Tips

Buying an acoustic guitar for the first time will require some time and effort from your part. After all, if you want to be owner of a good quality guitar that will allow you to practice and hone your skills, you can’t afford to buy just any acoustic guitar that you see in a music or online shop. If you are too hasty with the whole guitar shopping venture, you’ll just waste valuable money and time since you may end up having a poor-sounding and low quality musical instrument that will be broken in just a matter of months.

If it’s your first time to buy an acoustic guitar, below are some handy tips you should keep in mind:

Be on the lookout for any dents, cracks, nicks, and bridge separation.

Whether you are buying a new or used guitar, you have to make sure that there aren’t any parts of the guitar that are cracking or have serious wear on the finish. Keep in mind that even new ones can often be played or handled by customers and as such, they may fall off their stands and get bumped and even some scratches.

Although scratches or scuff marks won’t affect the overall sound of the guitar, unfortunately, cracks are a different matter. Make sure you thoroughly inspect the guitar since some cracks may not be very noticeable. In addition, take the time to ensure that the bridge is sitting fully flush with the top of the guitar and it is not lifting up or cracking.

Make sure the neck and fretboard are in good condition.

Carefully inspect the neck from the bottom of the guitar to make sure that it isn’t bent, crooked, or warped in any way. Make sure the frets on the fretboard do not stick out that they rub your hand in an uncomfortable and sometimes, even painful way.

Choose a guitar with the ideal action.

Action pertains to the space between the strings and the fretboard. Guitar players will sometimes find it hard to press the strings down to the fretboard if the action is too high. On the other hand, if the action is too low, the strings will sometimes catch on the other frets and create a buzzing sound whenever it is in use. The good news is that if you want to buy a guitar with an action that is a bit off, this can easily be fixed by having an expert shave down the nut if the action is too high or have the nut filled with an epoxy if the strings are too low.

Music Gear Shopping

There are different types of music gear ranges that benefit your studio and practices. Portable keyboards are available in the market, which can be used wherever you want to play them. They have inbuilt speakers so there won’t be a need for any extra instrument to hear them. Some portable keyboards are both speaker attached and computer connectable as well.

Another useful gear is the drum mics. There are drum mic kits, which contain more than one microphone with accessories like clips, cases, etc. They are more affordable than buying single ones. These mics can also be used for different instruments. Both condenser and dynamic type microphones are available in the market that can be used for live performances and studio recordings respectively.

Electronic drums are most beneficial for drummers, who want to privately enjoy the sound. They have headphone attachments so that you can enjoy your own creation without the embarrassment of others hearing them. They are quieter than the acoustic drums, which makes every situation a perfect time to enjoy your own drumming without disturbing others.

With the amazing electronic drum of yours, a drum monitor or drum amplifier is the best gear you can ever have. It is also advisable to use an alternative to these amplifiers due to their versatility. Products like keyboard amplifiers, powered PA speakers are the most common alternatives used. However, it is not advisable to use a guitar amplifier or bass amplifier, as it does not reproduce the exact sound produced by a drum. It is more appropriate to find a portable and less weight amplifier so that you can carry them around.

When all of your instruments are ready to play, then you need a recorder. There are digital multitrack recorders available in the market that help you to record the music tracks. The desktop digital multitrack recorder has all the facilities like recording mixing and reproduction of your music all built in them. Portable or handheld multitrack recorders are convenient as they can be carried easily in your bag or even in your pocket.

While selecting a multitrack recorder we should check how many tracks it can record simultaneously and also the number of tracks it can mix. If the manufacturer lists the track recorder as 8 tracks, then the maximum number of tracks it can mix is 8. Handheld ones can be used in outdoor recordings, rehearsals, live performances, etc.

Info of Contemporary Musicians

When you are looking for contemporary musicians, what comes to mind? I bet I know. Justin Bieber. Selena Gomez. Katy Perry. Florida Georgia Line. Dirks Bentley. Chainsmokers. Lil Wayne. Ringing bells?

Despite your best efforts, you’ve probably heard certain names a little more than you would have liked to. Don’t worry. The names that have been jammed into your reluctant ears OVER and OVER and OVER are not at all the only musicians making music these days and not all music is about shallow, superficial themes and nonsense. Marketing has been working hard to drown out everyone but a few people but fear not, here are a few breaths of fresh air who are contemporary, tasteful and you might not have heard of them as much as the names I mentioned.

These are some people who put the “art” back in contemporary artist.

Janelle Monae – Imagine a powerful, stage moving female love child of James Brown, Tina Turner and George Clinton. Her range is absolutely ridiculous and unlike many image heavy performers, she’s authentic and transparent. She seems to exude energy that has hasn’t been fabricated by a label, a focus group or a management company, she is simply just her and you can see if easily in her completely show-stopping funky heavy performances.

Derek Trucks – An almost albino successor to the Alman Brothers Band, this timid looking guy started touring with them at only thirteen, but the moment you see him play, you mill realize immediately, he may just be one of the greatest guitar players ever to lie. He has influences from Jimi Hendrix, Ravi Shankar and John Coltrane and plays almost exclusively with a slide.

The Black Keys – OK, OK, so they aren’t THAT unknown. This white-as-saltines power duo actually didn’t really have any plans for super stardom when they started out… they were just trying to pay rent and stay alive. The awards, world tours and very successful music career came only after their very modest beginnings. Also if you’ve got a minute, check out “Tighten Up” their hilarious music video where you can see their on camera sons and them pummeling each other into bloody pulps over a pretty woman and her daughter. They sound a bit like Howlin’ Wolf, Canned Heat and Robert Johnson.

Alabama Shakes – They didn’t form until 2009 and already they have amassed a huge following and had some very impressive career success without churning out songs that include the phrase “Oh, oh baby you are making crazy”. YAY! This American Blues Rock band is fronted by Brittany Howard, a woman who sings and performs so powerfully, you’d swear she could command a tornado to lay down and go to sleep. They blend Janis Joppelin, Otis Redding, Aretha Frankiln and even David Bowie!

For you, weary lover of good music who would like a break from songs about unintelligible garbage, may your soul be quenched from a quick googling of these bands. Keep listening. Keep loving. Keep demanding more of your music. It is you and only you who separates the world from being slaughtered by a sonic tsunami of meaninglessness.

Types Of Music

Classical

It’s said to be one of the oldest surviving styles of modern times. Most people consider it as the most restrictive and formal types of music. It’s sung with uncontrolled vibrato and total emotional release. While the music is great, it often lacks the intimacy that is common with most other types of songs. There are many types of this music including: opera, madrigals, symphony, chamber music, choral and Gregorian chant.

Rock

This is a broad form of music that is characterized by a strong beat, simple chord structure, and often played loudly. The main instruments used are electric guitar, bass, vocals, and drums. Experts report that the songs originated from the fusion of country music and blues. There are many types of this music under this genre. They include: Rock n roll, southern, garage, glam and punk rock.

Country

Country music emerged in 1920. Experts believe that it emerged from folk songs of the southern USA. Just like the blues music, the songs feature a simple, three-chord arrangement. This arrangement gives a lot of room for innovation. The songs are sung using different instruments such as harmonicas, banjos, electric guitars and fiddles. There are many types of these songs including: rockabilly, country rock, Honky Tonk, blue glass music, outlaw country, country rock, Nashville sound, contemporary country, new traditionist, Bakersfield sound, Texas country and many others.

Jazz

Also known as the classical version of the blues music, it resulted from among the black community of the southern US. The music is often performed by ensembles but in some cases, single artists perform it too. The songs are characterized by African undertones that are evident in the mixture of improvisations, syncopation, swing note, and polyrhythms. Just like other types of music, there are many types of jazz music. They include: Bebop, Chicago style, New Orleans, and fusion jazz music.

Electronic

From its name, this is a type of music that is characterized by the use of electronic instruments. The most common instruments used are: electric guitar, theremin, and synthesizers. It was popular among the youth in the 1970s and 1980s where it was heavily played in the Discos. Over the years, the music has inculcated other types of music such as hard rock, metal, and even R&B. The different types of this music include: break, hard dance, trance music, techno, UK garage, house music, ambient, industrial music, jungle, and trance music.