About Me

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Atlanta, GA, United States
When I suffered a lip injury that ended my career as a classical trombonist, I thought my life as a musician was finished, but I fell in love with music all over again when Santa gave me a guitar for Christmas in 2003. Even as I was struggling with my first chords, I was planning a new performance career. As a trombonist, I performed with the Heritage of America Band at Langley Air Force Base, the Ohio Light Opera, and in pick-up bands for touring acts that included Rosemary Clooney, George Burns, and the Manhattan Transfer. Reborn as a jazz guitarist, I sing and play my own solo arrangements of jazz classics, am half of the Godfrey and Guy duo, and hold the guitar chair in the Sentimental Journey Orchestra. I have been a freelance music copyist since 1995, served as Director of Music at Northwest Unitarian Universalist Congregation from 2011 to 2017, and currently serve as Contemporary Band Director at the same congregation.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

New Baby

Although I've played mainly electric guitars, I've been more and more attracted to acoustic sounds over the past several months. The Godfrey and Guy duo has been mixing in some folky songs with our jazz standards, and I've been thinking about how nice they would sound on acoustic. I've also been interested lately in reviving an old love of mine…Celtic music. I absolutely love the folk songs of Ireland, Scotland, and England, and, just like the folk songs in the Godfrey and Guy repertoire, these sound marvelous on acoustic guitar. Even in my jazz playing, I'm loving the "woodier" acoustic sound and the chunkier comping.

For me, the main issue with moving from mainly electric to mainly acoustic has been my wimpy electric guitar hands. Acoustic guitars are generally harder to play than electric guitars. The strings are usually heavier, and the action is a little higher. An evening of solo guitar can be rough on the hands even on an electric, but it would wreak havoc on my hands if I tried to do the same thing on the acoustics I've played.

Taylor 314CE
Enter the Taylor 314CE, my new baby. A couple years ago, I played a friend's 314CE at a New Year's Eve party and was struck by how easy it was to play. I've been thinking about that guitar ever since. I've been saving my pennies. A few weeks ago, I knew I was getting close to being able to afford a 314CE, so I went to Sam Ash to try one. I just wanted to see if my friend's guitar was an anomaly, or if they were all so easy to play. Sure enough, this guitar felt just as good in my hands as my friend's. Two weeks later, I had enough in my account to pay for a guitar and have money left for pesky things like rent, bills, food, and gas, so I went back to the store, tried it one more time, and bought it.

Sometimes I experience buyer's remorse, even if it's a piece of equipment that I need for my work, but not this time. It played and sounded great in the store, and it sounded even better at home. It's ridiculously easy to play. It feels like this guitar was made for me. I couldn't put it down all evening.

As she handed me the receipt, the salesperson said "This is a forever guitar." I think she's right.

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