Updates, Recycled Lessons And New Posts

Hey everyone!

By and large, I just have a few updates here.  

The site got a new layout!  It’s less THX-1138 and more product photo shoot, but it should at least be easier to read.  It’s affected some of the layout and links and I’m cleaning them up right now.  

A new “old” lesson

This will include adding links to the Guitar-Muse lesson series that I’ve been doing into the “lessons” section.

While new player profiles are in the increasingly infamous pipeline, I thought I’d post a video that I found as I was looking for a file on my hard drive.  

I shot this video back in early 2011 to go along with the Chord Recycling Lesson series I was posting at the time. After watching it back, I was flabbergasted with the sheer volume of “um”‘s in the lesson and planned on re-shooting the lesson with something novel like a script.

Then I got knee deep into other projects and so that never happened. ; )

I found this again and decided to post it as, while it doesn’t represent the most articulate lesson that I’ve ever given, I think it conveys the ideas well, and it shows a number of ways to get new chord and solo sounds from a shape that you already know!

The related lessons for this are:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Chasing Tone Article

Speaking of Guitar-Muse, I just added a new article to the “Evolution of a Live Rig” series.  You can read the newest installment part 2 here, or part 1 here.

Eventually a lot of gear pieces old and new are going to be migrating to the Guitar-Muse site as I want to focus the GuitArchitecture site more on the performance, philosophical and psychological aspects of performance.

Kindle Books

Are in final stages of editing and should be out soon!

That’s it for now.  As always a number of new things are on the horizon and as always, thanks for reading!

Rare Picks And A Pentatonic Approach From Mr. Cusano For Guitar-Muse

Hey Everyone!

A quick update from DC, where rock and roll is alive and well!

I’ll have some new playing and gear content up here in August.  In the meantime, since there’s been a lot of music business / psychology of music posts on GuitArchitecture lately,  I thought I’d touch on both areas with some new posts on Guitar-Muse.

First up, is a post on my Pickboy Speed King pick.  It’s a weird and cool piece of gear and the flatpickers amongst you might find some DIY inspiration in pick design there.  You can read all about it here.  

Secondly, I’m doing a player profile series for Guitar-Muse and the first player up is the former Vincent Cusano (Vinnie Vincent).  Vinnie has gotten a lot of attention in the press for everything but his guitar playing, but in many ways he’s a fascinating player to me.  He managed to fully embrace the shred aesthetic and do it in a really unique way.  Vinnie’s pentatonic-based approach produces some cool sounds that you can find here.

The player profile series is going to feature some cool guitarists that mostly fly under the radar.  As I mentioned before, the series will also include Alex Masi,  Vlatko Stefanovski, Ridgely Snow, and José Peixoto.

There should be some gear/tech pieces on modeling, tone and amps with some other interviews getting posted into August/September.

That’s it for now!

More stuff next week and as always thanks for reading.

-SC

Guitar-Muse Interview With Steve Vai And Gig, Post And Kindle Updates

Hey everyone!

.

Steve Vai Interview

My interview with Steve Vai is now up on Guitar-Muse.  You can read it here.  I’ve also posted a short lesson on rhythmic ear training that uses one of the new tracks as the basis for the lesson (copyright prohibits me from posting the actual notes – but it’s a good primer on how to figure out syncopated rhythms).  You can read that post here

.

Today’s Children of Mu Gig Is Rescheduled

The gig with Justin Wierbonski’s “Miles Davis Bitches-Brew era” group Children of Mu next Thursday is still happening but since today’s gig at the Shrine was double booked, it’s now been postponed until next Saturday evening.  

The rest of the band can’t make it so next Saturday’s show is going to be a drum guitar duo – but it’s going to be more free-form Jazz Sabbath (HA!)  and not at all “The Girl from Ipanema”!!

Forecast for next Saturday evening in Harlem –  high note density mixed with sporadic ambient textures with a chance of attendance.  Here are the dates for next week.

.

BAR4 

THURSDAY, JULY 12, 2012 – 9PM

.

THE SHRINE WORLD MUSIC VENUE 

Saturday, JULY 14, 2012 (time is evening TBA)

.

An Immodest Proposal Part II…

will be up on Monday and some people are likely to find it provocative.

In other post news, I do have some lessons to go up on the site over the next few weeks and I’ve been working on the Kindle book which I hope to have done by the end of the month.

Player profiles are on tap for Guitar-Muse in July and August and some cool interviewees in the pipeline in a “guitars of the underground series.”

.

Ah “Hot Town, summer in the city!”

Stay cool and thanks for reading.

-SC

Different Pricing Tiers Announced For Book PDFs

Update – 2/3/2013 

 

Hello everyone!  Please note that as of 2/1/2013 all of my books are available for order exclusively on my Lulu.com page and on Amazon.  While I may run an e-book  bundle offer directly in the future as of right now, unfortunately, no bundle options are available.

 

I’m leaving the page up for archival purposes but if you go to the Books link at the top of the page, you’ll find more detailed information about the books below and the other books in the GuitArchitect’s Guide To:  series.

.

-SC

.

.

I’ve had some people ask about book ordering.  It seems that the 3 pdfs for $30 price point was an easier one for some people to enter into instead of the 4 for $40.

.

I really want to make the books accessible to whoever wants them, so here’s the new price point breakdown for pdf orders (ordering information and links are at the bottom of the page.

.

Any individual pdf is $15 (US).

Any 2 pdfs are now $20 (US).

Any 3 pdfs are $30 (US).

Any 4 pdfs are $40 (US).

 .

I’ll be updating the books page with all of this information – but for now ordering info (as well as a full description and screen shots of each book) is below.

.

Currently, I have four guitar reference/instructional books available for purchase:

.

The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Modes: Melodic Patterns

.

The GuitArchitect’s Positional Exploration

.

The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Modes: Harmonic Combinatorics

and

. 

The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Chord Scales

Print editions of any of the books are available individually here (lulu.com) or on Amazon (amazon.com, amazon.co.uk, or amazon.fr).

.

The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Modes: Melodic Patterns 

(333 pages)

.
My sonic visualization system, GuitArchitecture,  utilizes an intuitive two-string method of understanding the guitar fingerboard in a logical and concise way where seven core fingerings for major, melodic minor and harmonic minor scales replace rote memorization with an intuitive overview that can be applied to any scale or modal system.

.

In The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Modes: Melodic Patterns, I’ve taken the two-string approach and created a reference book of melodic permutations that allows the reader to generate an almost infinite number of unique melodic cells and sequences.

.

Applicable to guitarists and bassists, this book is an invaluable resource for both compositional and improvisational material.

.

The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Modes: Melodic Patterns

If you’ve ever looked at any instructional guitar material, you’ve probably come across some variation of the phrase, “Take this idea and transpose it to every other key”. In this book, I’ve taken a seed idea (a single two-string fingering for C Ionian) and then used a mathematical process called permutation, (which changes the sequence of how things are arranged) as a basis for creating unique melodic cells.

.

This book not only details every possible permutation, but then goes on to show how to create every unique combination of them. These unique melodic cells can be used either on their own as compositional or improvisational ideas or combined with other melodic cells to create longer phrases.

.

I’ve included jpegs of some of the pages from the Melodic Patterns book below.  Since the jpegs were converted from the pdf of the book, there’s some pixilation in the jpegs that is not present in the pdf but these will still give you an idea of what’s in the book. 

(Click on any graphic to see it as a larger size.)

.

.

.

.


The GuitArchitect’s Positional Exploration

(254 pages)

.

In The GuitArchitect’s Positional Exploration, I’ve taken an introductory guitar exercise and turned it on its head to reveal deep possibilities that exist not only in positional visualization, but in technical awareness as well.

.

This book shows how to take a simple idea and creatively develop and modify it through melodic, harmonic and rhythmic variations that can be applied to your own music as well.

.

.

.

.

The GuitArchitect’s Positional Exploration Guide:

This book takes the initial 1-2-3-4 exercise and then adapts it to all other string-set-combinations in position.  But it also does some other important things for the reader:

  • In addition to documenting each example in the 8th position, it provides chordal analysis and a detailed series of charts for determining multiple harmonic interpretation of the notes involved.

 

  • From a technical standpoint, the book explores every possible variation of note attack that can be executed.  This could lead to entirely new technical approaches for the reader.

 

  • From a compositional/improvisational standpoint, the book covers a series of ways to manipulate the patterns, rhythmically and melodically in a systematic way to develop ideas fully.

 

I have a lesson on Guitar-Muse that uses material directly from the book.  If you want to get a sense of the content you can see it here.

.

I’ve included jpegs of some of the pages from the Positional Exploration book below.  Since the jpegs were converted from the pdf of the book, there’s some pixelation in the jpegs that’s not present in the pdf,  but these will still give you an idea of what’s in the book.

(Click on any graphic to see it as a larger size.)

.

.


.

.

.

The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Modes: Harmonic Combinatorics 

(410 pages)

.

.

.

In The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Modes: Harmonic Combinatorics, I’ve gone into the nuts and bolts of chord construction and analysis by taking a systematic approach to generating thousands of chord variations that can be utilized intuitively in any key. In addition to being a vast harmonic resource, I also show you ways to make melodic lines from this material allowing the book to double as a melodic resource as well.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

Harmonic Combinatorics is 410 pages of instruction and reference (that’s almost a ream of paper if you need a visual).  It’s the  deepest resource I’ve created and has numerous harmonic and melodic approaches that can be used to break through theoretical, technical or other musical limits you currently have.  

.

Harmonic Combinatorics?

.

As a general rule, I’m not a big fan of jargon, but in this case I think its applicable as it helps define what this book is, and what it isn’t.

This is not a traditional chord book. The purpose of this book is not to teach a number of stock voicings and typical chord progressions for the reader to default back to as there are dozens, if not hundreds, of books that already do that.

This book centers around a series of methodologies for developing unique harmonic and melodic voicings for compositional or improvisational use that can be adapted to any tonal system.

Harmonic Combinatorics refers to a process of identifying “countable discrete structures” harmonically. In this case, it means examining unique combinations of notes on all of the possible string combinations for the purposes of developing harmonic and melodic possibilities.

The book is divided into approximately 110 pages of instruction and 300 pages of reference.  It covers a lot of theory – but makes it accessible even to the novice and shows how to apply it.  It’s a modular text that can be read in either a linear or a non-linear way.

.

There are a couple of posts that I’ve put up that excerpts and adapts material directly from this book.  To get a sample of the book’s style you can check out :

.

CREATING CHORDS AND LINES FROM ANY SCALE – A HARMONIC COMBINATORICS / SPREAD VOICINGS LESSON

Slash and Burn – Creating More Complex Sounds With Slash Chords

RECYCLING CHORDS PART II: TRIAD TRANSFORMATION

RECYCLING CHORDS PART I OR WHERE’S THE ROOT?

.

I’ve included jpegs of some of the pages from the Harmonic Combinatorics book below.  Since the jpegs were converted from the pdf of the book, there’s some pixelation in the jpegs that’s not present in the pdf,  but these will still give you an idea of what’s in the book.

(Click on any graphic to see it as a larger size.)

.

.

.

.

.

.


.

The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Chord Scales

(190 pages)

.

.

.

In The GuitArchitect’s Guide To Chord Scales, I show you how to make your own scales to use over chords and how to derive chords from whatever crazy scales you come up with in an easy, intuitive and musical way.

.

Over the course of its 190 pages, the Guide To Chord Scales not only offers extensive instruction and approaches, but also acts as a reference book covering chord scale options ranging from 3 notes right on up to the full 12-note chromatic.

.

While devised as a guitar resource for instructional, compositional and/or improvisational material – this book can be a vital component in any musician’s library.

.

The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Chord Scales

Chord Scales is 190 pages of instruction and reference.  It’s the shortest book I’ve written, but it’s just as deep as any of the other books.  The big difference between this book and the other books, is that this book starts by taking one chord scale and really putting it through the ringer and demonstrating how to use it in ways that are intuitive and musical.   Once the process for what to do with a chord scale is demonstrated, the book  then goes on to outline all the unique chord scales from 3-12 notes!!!

.

The book has a lot of performance insights and presents the material in a way I believe to be truly unique (at least I’ve never seen it dealt with this way before).  It’s incredible exciting to me, and while it’s been written as a soloing, compositional or improvisational resource for guitarists – it could be invaluable to musicians in general.

.

There are a couple of posts that I’ve put up that excerpts and adapts material directly from this book.  To get a sample of the book’s style you can check out :

.

CREATING CHORDS AND LINES FROM ANY SCALE – A HARMONIC COMBINATORICS / SPREAD VOICINGS LESSON

Making Music Out Of Scales

.

The lulu.com page includes a preview option for the first 12 pages of the book, but I’ve included some additional jpegs of some of the Chord Scales book  pages below.  Since the jpegs were converted from the pdf of the book, there’s some pixelation in the jpegs that’s not present in the pdf,  but these will still give you an idea of what’s in the book.

(Click on any graphic to see it as a larger size.)


.

.

.

Ordering information (slight return)

  • If you would like to purchase any individual book pdf  for $15 USD just click the PayPal link below.  (Also, when ordering, please specify which book you’d like – The GuitArchitect’s Guide To Modes: Melodic PatternsThe GuitArchitect’s Guide to Modes:  Harmonic CombinatoricsThe GuitArchitect’s Positional Exploration, or The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Chord Scales).

Any 1 GuitArchitecture pdf for $15.
..
  • If you would like to purchase any two book pdfs  for $20 USD (and save $10 off of individual orders) just click the PayPal link below.  (Also, when ordering, please specify which 2 pdfs you’d like – The GuitArchitect’s Guide To Modes: Melodic PatternsThe GuitArchitect’s Guide to Modes:  Harmonic CombinatoricsThe GuitArchitect’s Positional Exploration, or The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Chord Scales).

Any 2 GuitArchitecture pdfs for 20
..
  • If you would like to purchase any three book pdfs for $30 USD (and save $15 off of individual orders) just click the PayPal link below.  (Also, when ordering, please specify which 3 pdfs you’d like – The GuitArchitect’s Guide To Modes: Melodic PatternsThe GuitArchitect’s Guide to Modes:  Harmonic CombinatoricsThe GuitArchitect’s Positional Exploration, or The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Chord Scales).

Any 3 GuitArchitecture pdfs for $30
..

.

  • The  Four-book PDF bundle (which includes The GuitArchitect’s Guide To Modes: Melodic PatternsThe GuitArchitect’s Guide to Modes:  Harmonic CombinatoricsThe GuitArchitect’s Positional Exploration, and The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Chord Scales) is available for $40 using the PayPal bundle button below.  (A $20 savings off ordering the books on their own).

Any 4 GuitArchitecture pdfs for $40
..
  • If you’d like to save yourself the printing and binding costs, you can go to the link here ( Lulu.com ) to buy a nicely bound version of any of the books.

.

Please note:

I turn all orders around within the same day I receive PayPal notification.  

If you have ordered a book and have not heard from me within a 12-hour time frame, please send me an e-mail at guitar(dot)blueprint(at)gmail.com, and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can!

.

Special thanks to everyone who has already purchased a book.  Your support is greatly appreciated!

.

As always, thanks for reading!

.

-SC

Update – New Guitar-Muse Soloing Article, New Tracks Et More!

Hi Everyone!

I just wrote an “instructional” post for Guitar-Muse about soloing that’s coming more from a self-pedagogical/ philosophical/ motivational standpoint but talks about the factors determining when a song needs a solo and how to develop your own voice when soloing.   It works off of some of the ideas I’ve written about here and you can read that here.

For those of you into the RedLnyx Trials games – you can hear me playing a solo on a track called “Come Alive ” on the new Trials Evolution game.  There’s a video for that here.  The solo starts at 1:26 or so and followed some directorial cues for what they wanted for the solo.  I’ll have a post about my video game recording experiences up next week.

I’ve mentioned Manrico Montero’s awesome Mandorla label before, but I’ve just sent a new soundscape track off to him for an Autumn-themed net release.  I have no idea how my field recording gone awry track will fit – the text for the track is:

“The ground grows cold

the sky holds it’s breath

in Autumn the bill comes due.”

so it may be ambient soundscapes – but it’s not new age by any means!  No word on release date for that yet.

.

More reviews on the way.  I have a new set of monitors that I dig for the price range and I’m working with a beta version of the new Scuffham Amp update for a forthcoming review (early verdict – it’s cool!) More online lessons are also on the way.  I’m trying to get rough hewn tracks out the door and working on tracks for a new project.

.

Finally, I’ve gotten a lot of really kind comments from people about the GuitArchitect’s… book series and I wanted to thank everyone for their support.  I’m happy that the books are out there and that people are getting something useful from them!

.

Thanks again!

-SC

New Interview With Ola Strandberg Of .strandberg* Guitarworks Is Now Up On Guitar-Muse

Hey everyone!

Just a quick update.  As one of my side gigs writing columns for Guitar-Muse.com, I recently interviewed Ola Strandberg of .strandberg* Guitarworks.  Ola makes really cool custom models for players with ergonomic features and self designed parts (like bridges) that he uses in his builds.

In the interview, he talks about a number of cool topics (Including DIY and creative commons design) and as Misha from Periphery or Tosin from Animals as Leaders will tell you – from 6-8 strings Ola’s got it going on!

You can read the interview with Ola here, or read any of my other interviews with builders and players here.

Other than that I should be picking up the last of my boxes and then unpacking.  Hopefully then I can start the whole recording/gigging/clinic cycle that is supposed to start to get unearthed in NY.  

Now about that amp….

I should have a track on a new Mandorla release in May.  New Daren Burns tracks and the Rough Hewn trio ep are both threatening to drop before the end of the year.

Back to it (assembling IKEA furniture that is)!

As always, thanks for reading!

-SC

Guest post on Joe Gore/Seymour Duncan’s Tone Fiend and The Fortunate Demise Of The News Page

So, in typical GuitArchitecture “last thing first” style, the news page is gone.  It seems to make more sense to just put updates about gigs, recordings, etc. here.  I always forgot about the “news” aspect of the page anyway so (even with about 30 pages of updates and info in the hopper)  it’s not much of an immediate loss.  For those of you who subscribe to the blog, I’ll try to keep the news posts to a minimum.  In the meantime, here are some recent items that may be of interest.

.

Guest Blogging for Joe Gore’s Tone Fiend

Big thanks to Joe Gore for posting my article (and editing my chicken scratches into something coherent) on the wild string sounds of Vietnam on his great tone fiend blog.  If you want to see some crazy guitars (and some crazier phrasing) you can czech out that post here.

.

  • In other guest posting news, I have a (relatively) new post up on Guitar-Muse.  If you’re looking for a warm-up lick (and some good playing advice) check it out! A cool  interview with Mike Scuffham (of Scuffham Amps/S-gear) is also up here , and you can find all my posts (interviews, lessons, and more) here (it’s 3 pages so just tab through the bottom of the page.
  • Books.  I just want to take a moment and thank everyone for their pdf orders (and kind words about the books in general).  It’s simultaneously affirming and humbling at the same time.  So thank you!  If you’ve ordered a hard copy, I still hope to have print editions  by the end of January.  As soon as I get proofed editions – I’ll  get one out to you!

There’s more to come!!

As always, thanks for reading!

-SC

The GuitArchitect’s Guide to Modes: Melodic Patterns Book “Pre-Release” Now Available

6/5/12

.

The official version of this book has been released as both a print and PDF version, so I’m leaving this page up  as a pointer for  historical purposes (and so that people who are interested in the book can get some more detailed information).   

.

All ordering information (including an overview of the book and jpegs of sample pages) can be found here.

.

Thanks!

-SC


Free Sweeping Pentatonic Minor Scale Lesson on Live4Guitar.com now online

Hey all,

 

Greetings from the sweltering heat of AZ! (Sweltering heat?  In June?  In a desert?  Go figure!!)

 

Here is a micropost of a few things in orbit of the world of GuitArchitecture.

 

  1. My Sweeping Pentatonic Minor lesson is up on Live4guitar.com . Mp3s. pdfs and Guitar Pro Tabs OH MY!  I’ll be posting a paid acoustic based hybrid picking lesson there this summer as well.
  2. Interviews with Joe Gore, Will Kennedyand Miroslav Tadic have ben conducted and should be on Guitar-Muse.com fairly soon.  Some really cool people in the pipeline moving forward – but I’ll have more info soon!
  3. Rough Hewn Trio Gig @ Tribal Cafe in Echo Park/Los Angeles Friday, July 15.  Be there.  Be Square.  Aloha.
  4. Oh yes, the books.  Actually a lot of behind the scenes work is being done to make sure that paper mills across the country will stay in business….

 

Real posts resume next week!  Thanks for dropping by and have a good weekend!

-SC

 

 

FnH Interview Online and other Guest Blogging

Hey all – a couple of brief news things:

.

1.  My interview with FNH Guitars is now live on Live4Guitar, a very cool guitar blog with a paid lesson service as well.  I’m going to be posting some lessons and additional content there fairly regularly, so check back here or at Live4Guitar.

.

2.  I’ve also taken on a new weekly column for Guitar-Muse.com, that will be a 10 questions with various builders, players and tech people.  I’m in the process of lining some cool people up – but wanted to get your feedback as well.  The first person on the block is Jonathan Wilson who’s doing incredible work making bowed guitars in SoCal (check out some of the awesomeness on the Togaman GuitarViol site).  Update: This interview is now online, you can read all about it here.

.

I’ve also got interviews with FnH Guitars, Jack Sanders and a couple of other people lined up.  But I’m interested to see who you dear readers, would like to read about.  If you could take a second to just put a name or a company name in the survey, it would be very helpful.

Click here to put your request in

.

Thanks for reading!

-SC