Exploring Your Own Imagination
Exploring Your Own Imagination
Fear. This is the number one factor that dilutes a good player's studio
performance. You get to the studio, you set up, the track rolls and all of the
sudden your fifteen years old again. It happens to me every time. I don't know
why but even now at twenty one I feel like I have some guitar odyssey to burn
down onto wax, that is something that should come in due time. The most
important task at hand is making sure that your playing caters to the song at
hand. In the long run listeners will appreciate a tasty four bar solo than a
twenty four bar noodle fest. Not to say that some songs shouldn't have a twenty
four bar noodle fest, they are perfectly welcome on a song that calls for that.
And if you are not live tracking and you feel lonely out in the studio, ask the
engineer if you could record in the mixing room with him and the band. It is
much more like playing live and can be very relaxing, for me that is how I get
my best studio performances. So, with all that being said lets get to the
Preparation is key when it comes to nailing a good studio track, wether
it be rhythm or lead. It can save you money and precious time to come up with
innovative ideas to separate you from the other thousands of bands doing the
same thing, recording and releasing products. After all, you can be as artistic
as you want; its your expression., but remember that you are also trying to
stand out. Think of some sounds and tones that you really appreciate. How do
they apply to your particular project?
Inspiration or emulation, if something seems too "inspired" its
probably emulation, which is a great place to start. Try to take it beyond that
though, for intense Jimi Hendrix used a Octavia on Purple Haze to get that
shredding solo. So, one up it by using a Fuzz Face and an Octavia to really tear
apart your sound. These are things that you can do after you lay down a good
base of rhythm tracks. And make sure that you have gone over the arrangement
many times and that you, the producer, and the band are satisfied.
Now that you have found a sound that you think will fit with the song, make sure
that the lyrics really confide the tonal message or vise versa.
Sometimes you might find a very unique sound for a track and musically it floors
you, then you sing over it and the vocals get out shined.
If this happens then you should try and re-assess, maybe just use the really
cool sound in the bridge, or the solo break. This is what could make not only
the vocal stand out, but the guitar track as well. It all comes back to
tastefulness, I would much rather have a nugget of delicious lobster tail than a
basket of chicken gizzards. Not that all songs must have lyrics, I prefer the
instrumental version of "Little Wing". Both Stevie Ray and Hendrix us a little
reservation to really make you listen, then they sonically bombard you with
passion and power. That is beautiful work and it is not super-human, its just
very well played and thought out.
I believe anyone can achieve a comparable sound to that. All they have to do is
know themselves and their playing style very well, and apply it so something
To be genuine is very difficult, I sometimes wonder if it is possible at
all these days. Then I go to my local blues jam and plug in with some good
friends of mine and realize that genuine is not something that comes from tone,
guitar, amp, influence or anything material. Genuine comes from the feeling you
get when you and your closest friends and all moving in time with one another
and everything else is so small at that moment.
The sound you create with your musical companions should be something you
cherish, I could not imagine creating my songs with out my band there with me,
helping me through the process.
After all, that's all life is right? A Process? Why not make it a very
enjoyable process, I think guitar can bring that to me and many other people. So
when you pick up your axe next time, don't think about how you can make your
playing better. Think about how much better you can feel from your playing.
For more information on my band please visit:
Click on Album Cover to go to Medusa Stone Band's MySpace