The Ghost Of The Guit-A-Grip Podcast (Or Lessons Learned From Setting Up A Podcast)

Hello everyone!

Episode #15

Guit-A-Grip podcast episode #15  is out and available for download/streaming.

Subscription Notes:

  • You can subscribe through iTunes here:
  • You can use this link to subscribe with any other feed based service:
  • or you can right-click here to download it.
  • or you can stream this episode below.
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Show Notes:

Wait….There’s A Podcast?

Yes sir or/and ma’am!  There’s definitively a podcast that was going on with the posts.  I set it aside for a while while I was looking for a house (we moved in February), and took some time to really review what went so horribly wrong with it.  The dissection of all the gory details can be found in the podcast, but the short story is that I made a series of assumptions that didn’t work out they way I thought they might and learned some good things for the next go-round!

I reference a martial arts post in the podcast, that I’m fond of (despite the knee jerk inducing title).  That post can be read here.

Overall, I feel like I may have helped some people by going over all the things I did wrong – but hopefully I’ll be able to help a lot more people in the future.

That’s it for now!

As always, I hope this helps you with your own goals – or at least keeps you amused until the next time!

See you soon and thanks again for listening/reading!

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New Guit-A-Grip Post and Upcoming Gigs

Guit-A-Grip

The music business post series on Guit-A-Grip continues with a new post that discusses the real economics of touring and the importance of building a scene.  You can read that post, Touring Fact And Fiction here!

Your Unfunny Valentine and more

For those of you in the upstate NY area, I’ll be playing 2 hours of original improvised music for a benefit gig for the Amsterdam library this Friday (i.e.Valentines Day) to help them with a fundraising effort.    Tickets are $15/pp or $25 per couple and features local cheese, chocolate and wine tastings.  You can find out more about that even here.

The Flurry Festival follows this in Saratoga Springs and while I’m supposed to be performing again at the Gloversville Library the following Saturday, a scheduling conflict might prevent that.  If the gig happens I’ll promote it here.

A few more things on the table, but I’ll be performing at (and am on the steering committee  for) the Buck Moon Arts Festival this July.  It’s in its embryonic stages at this point) but here will be performances, vendors and various workshops that will make it a cool event!  You can find their facebook page with more detailed information here.

I also have a couple of dates in March and April penciled into the books more info when they go to pen (or marker).

Etc.

More guitar-muse posts, books and recordings to follow in what I hope to be a busy year!

 As always, thanks for reading!
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The Sonic Literacy Regional Tour And Other News

Hi everybody,

I hope this finds you well!

I just have a few updates that may be of interest to readers of this blog.

The “Sonic Literacy” “Tour”

I’ve decided to take a different approach to promoting my Minor Pentatonic book

theminorpentatonicscale-front

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and give a little something back to the local communities at the same time.  Growing up in upstate New York, I used to spend countless hours in public libraries just reading and feeding my brain.  I think they’re incredible resources that often get over looked, so I’m pulling together a “sonic literacy’ promotional tour that will go to regional libraries and present the material in the book in a short clinic / lecture format that’s free to the general public.  Hopefully it’ll introduce what I do to some people and perhaps it’ll get some people looking for a free lesson to reconnect to the resources that  they have on hand.

Dates are getting set, but I’m kicking it all off at The Gloversville Public Library on Saturday 12/14/13 at 12pm.  It’s only slated for an hour with set up so it should be short.  If you’re in the area, I hope you can drop by!

I’ll post more details when I have them.

In related news…

I have a few other projects in the works…. I’ve been hitting some open mikes in a low key fashion to try out some new acoustic material and it seems to be received fairly well, so that should get recorded soonish.

There are some live silent film accompaniment gigs lined up for 2014 -and I hope to have a unique spin on it but I’ll post more about those when I have more info.

Looking at some new ensemble ideas and pulling a solo set together in a worse-case scenario.  I’m also researching grants, funding and non-profit status for some of the longer-term projects but, again, more info when I have it.

Guit-A-Grip

The podcast is returning but in the meantime, I have a new post I put up about making the transition in self-definition as a “guitarist”.  It also ties into G.A.S. and some other holiday related observations.  You can check that out here.

Guitar-Muse

The Chris Buono interview went up last week.  You can check that out here.

The year will end out with a few reviews.  A review of the Zoom A3’s been submitted and should be up soon.  I have a piece about useful guitar related apps that will either go there or go up here and you might see a review of the Antonio Hermosa AH-50 classical acoustic-electric in time for the big guy to get it down the chimney for you.

Other

I’ve gotten some people asking me about the FnH website.  FnH IS still in business – they decided to overhaul the site, but if you e-mail info@fnhguitars.com you should still get someone to respond.  If it doesn’t work, just drop me a line and I’ll forward your message along to them.

John Harper (the H in FnH) has told me that some stuff is coming back my way – a new FnH model and just as exciting – my double neck fretted/fretless 13 lb monstrosity that he had to make 2 new necks for and completely re-do the wiring for is also due to come back!!  It bodes well for some serious sonic misgivings in 2014! ; )

Still trying to determine the scope of the practice book and the pentatonic extraction books but I think we’re good on more new books until 2014.

That’s it for now.  More news as it develops and as always, thanks for reading!

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Guit-A-Grip Podcast Episode #14 – Book Excerpt And Some Project Management Tips

Hello everyone!

Episode #14

Guit-A-Grip podcast episode #14 “Nothing Ever Got Done With An Excuse Excerpt #3″ is out and available for download/streaming.

Subscription Notes:

  • You can subscribe through iTunes here:
  • You can use this link to subscribe with any other feed based service:
  • or you can right-click here to download it.
  • or you can stream this episode below.
.

Show Notes:

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The Book

Much of this section of the book came from experiences that I had in, first, getting my Melodic Patterns book written and then, secondly, getting the book in a month project off of the ground.

I’m using that book as a case study, but I believe that the steps behind it help form a reasonable approach to working on any large project that’s unfamiliar (or largely unfamiliar) to you.

The steps to follow:

I made a reference to various pieces of advice.  The overall categories of this are:

  • Build off of past experiences (or go with what you know)

  • Whenever possible start with the heavy lifting

  • Beware of the rope swing

  • Be realistic about what you can do

  • Break up overwhelming things into small chunks

  • Contortion doesn’t hurt if you’re limber

  • Projects have a tendency to run wild on their own – so plan on constantly monitoring their growth

  • Be prepared to go a lot of it on your own

  • Be ready to make a lot of mistakes

  • Be ready to improvise because you can’t plan for everything

  • Have a deadline and/or know when you’re done

  • You really can’t do it alone

    Here are a few specifics related to the above:

Beware of the rope swing
The advice I gave for this was a little too vague so here’s a qualifier.  It’s all about balance.  If you jump into something with no research, knowledge or plan, it will generally go badly.  If you put too much energy into research, you may face paralysis in actually acting.

Deadlines
I’d write more about this but I’ve already written on it here.

That’s it for now!

As always, I hope this helps you with your own goals.

See you soon and thanks again for listening/reading!

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Guit-A-Grip Podcast #13 – New Book “Excerpt” #2

Hello everyone!

Episode #13

Guit-A-Grip podcast episode #13 “Nothing Ever Got Done With An Excuse Excerpt #2″ is out and available for download/streaming.

Subscription Notes:

  • You can subscribe through iTunes here:
  • You can use this link to subscribe with any other feed based service:
  • or you can right-click here to download it.
  • or you can stream this episode below.
.

Show Notes

The Podcast and the liberal use of the term “Excerpt”

Part of working in a format like this is being able to review things that you wrote a while ago and seeing how they shake out in a conversational manner.  That means that when I’m reading the book I’m editing the text in my head to prevent really awkward (or wrong things from being said.  It also makes for some stilted moments, but the good news it that it tightens up both the podcast and the book in the process.

I’ll talk more about why I do this in the future but (editing this down from a lumbering 23 minutes) I’m hoping to convince you that there is a method to my madness (or vice-versa).

The steps to follow:

Just to recap, these are the steps I reference in the podcast (I skipped a few of them on the audio!!!)  Good thing it’s an edit!

How to manage a project in a few broad strokes

  • Have a clear vision of what you want to do (set quantifiable goals).
  • Align perception with reality and create priorities (in other words make an honest assessment of what needs to happen to reach those goals)
  • Set deadlines and benchmarks.
  • Be accountable.
  • Do daily focused work on those goals and limit distractions and obstacles in the way of achieving them.
  • Make periodic reviews to check your project’s status against the benchmarks and timeline.
  • Utilize available resources when possible/necessary.

Come prepared:

I should have taken a page from the Boy Scouts this time around and been better prepared for a podcast.  Then, perhaps, I would have had something novel like water handy and not had either a coughing fit (edited out) or the scrath voice that comes in mid-way to the podcast before I started coughing.

Related material:

Most of the observations on this site, will work in directly with the podcast posted here.  But the two links I cited specifically were:

It’s not all gold and

Podcast Episode #12

That’s it for now!

As always, I hope this helps you with your own goals.

See you soon and thanks again for listening/reading!

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Guit-A-Grip Podcast #12 – New Book Excerpt #1

Hello everyone!

The New Book?

Yep!  I have a few new books that I’m working on, and the non-guitar instructional book, Nothing Ever Got Done With An Excuse (Or a case study in how to plan projects and get things done).  is all about several large scale projects that I got done (such as releasing 4 books of 1,200 + pages of writing in 5 months of 2011/2012).

You’re Podcasting this?

Yep!  A large component of the book is accountability so there are several advantages to podcasting the bulk of the book.

  1. It builds an audience for the book.
  2. It gives me a framework (and deadlines) for editing the material.
  3. Like I said in the podcast (re: pedagogy for pay and the flamenco dance teaching model) even if the ENTIRE book was put up online, there are people that will still want a book of the material.

Episode #12

Guit-A-Grip podcast episode #12 “Nothing Ever Got Done With An Excuse Introduction And Overview Excerpt” is out and available for download/streaming.

Subscription Notes:

  • You can subscribe through iTunes here:
  • You can use this link to subscribe with any other feed based service:
  • or you can right-click here to download it.
  • or you can stream this episode below.
.

Show Notes

The (other) Book

The writing book I reference in the podcast is Chris Baty’s, No Plot? No Problem!  A low-stress, high-velocity guide to writing a novel in 30 days. There are a bajillion Kindle titles for outputting an ebook quickly, but Chris’ book is the granddaddy of them in my humble opinion.

The Harvard Study:

The study I cited in the podcast was from a source that quoted,  What They Don’t Teach You in the Harvard Business School, by Mark McCormack.  Funny story, this site contends that the data is largely fabricated and based on a non-existant 1953 Yale study! (It then goes on to cite another study that came to the same conclusion).  So take that for what it’s worth because if the original study anecdote WAS fabricated – I can’t even fathom the number of people who must have cited the McCormack reference of it (or a reference to the reference) by now.

“There are only 12 notes and they take forever to learn.”

This is just a reminder.  If the new habits you’re trying to acquire are outside your comfort zone, you’ll need to review your game plan often.

The Steps to follow:

WOW!  It turns out that I was reading from an earlier draft of the book and missed a few steps!  Here’s a case where it pays to check out the website as well as the podcast.  ; )  I changed the below from first person to passive to make it more applicable to the reader.

How to manage a project in a few broad strokes

  • Have a clear vision of what you want to do (set quantifiable goals).
  • Align perception with reality and create priorities (in other words make an honest assessment of what needs to happen to reach those goals)
  • Set deadlines and benchmarks.
  • Be accountable.
  • Do daily focused work on those goals and limit distractions and obstacles in the way of achieving them.
  • Make periodic reviews to check your project’s status against the benchmarks and timeline.
  • Utilize available resources when possible/necessary.

That’s it for now!

See you soon and thanks again for listening/reading!

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Update from Upstate

Hey everyone,

A few quick things from the wild woods of Upstate NY.

Guit-A-Grip

I should mention that there’s a recent post and a new podcast up on guit-a-grip that may interest you if you have any interest in project management or motivational aspects of guitar playing.

Guitar-Muse

Okay…projects on tap for Guitar-Muse I hope we can get out before the end of the year:

  • Pentatonic Extraction Lesson (Submitted)
  • Taping Lesson (Submitted)
  • Ridgely Snow Player Profile (almost ready to go)
  • Interview w. Chris Buono (in the pipeline)
  • Review of Relentless: A Memoir (in the pipeline – short version you should check it out)
  • Review of the JamUp Pro app (in the pipeline)
  • Interviews with several people including Daren Burns and Fernando Vigueras
  • Possible cool gear reviews in the pipeline
  • Other lessons and player profiles

I have a steady stream of things going out to them, and hopefully we can get them up in a consistent manner!

Acoustic Project

Boy, I’ve been having the hardest time getting players for the Shakti-ish / Balkan-ish / Middle Eastern-ish / ish-ish acoustic project that I’ve been trying to pull together!  That in and of itself isn’t a shock, but what IS surprising is that  I’ve never had a project that had so much interest, and then kept falling apart at the moment of – “sounds good – let’s get together to play”.

The flake out factor almost as bad as LA in that respect. ; )

If you happen to be in upstate NY here’s the posting, and know a violinist or a guitarist who wants to show up to play, please pass that along!

At any rate, I’ve met some good people that hopefully something can come from and in the meantime, I guess I’ll keep plugging away at it and in the meantime just get a solo acoustic set together and try to make some headway there.

Electrics ‘R Us

There are very real threats of me going to Boston to see John Harper of FnH to pick up some guitars that are waiting there for me.  In the electric realm, I’m still trying to figure out how to get the Rough Hewn material signed off on, and working on pulling together a new remote project with some long-time collaborators/co-conspirators of mine and will feature a lot of 12-tone ideas.

Again we’ll see what happens.

(Another?) Book

Oh, and a lot of work has gone into the forthcoming  Pentatonic Extraction book thus far.  I don’t have an ETA, but it’s going to be cool!  There should be a lesson based on that material coming out for Guitar-Muse.

In other book related news, as a precursor to getting it out the door – If you get a chance, to check it out the new podcasts on Guit-A-Grip will feature a serialization  of my project management book, Nothing ever got done with an excuse  to help people get their projects off the ground.

That’s it for now!  As always, thanks for reading!

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