Friday, 10 July 2009

COMPETITION: Shred this!

Shred Junior wants you to blow him away!

1 Watch the video, get the backing track

2 Record a response video and upload to you tube

3 Complete this form:

4 Add your video as a response to the competition video

5 Promote your video!

6 WIN!

GOOD LUCK and thanks for entering this competition!


3rd: Vinnie Moore To The Core CD

2nd: Andy James 3 x DVD's from his extreme guitar series, SIGNED!!!!

1st prize: $199 guitar foot pedal!
MI Audio Tube Zone Overdrive Pedal

With the new Tube Zone, you can dial in your sound, regardless of the equipment you have to work with. Also, the mid switch has evolved into a continuous midrange control. This allows perfect setting for the mids. If these 6 external controls weren't enough (Gain, Tone, Volume, Character, Mids, Brightness), a seventh 'presence' trimmer was added to adjust the overall balance and sparkle of the Tube Zone.

Top of the range, most flexible MI Audio Overdrive Pedal.
4 clipping stages for tube amp-like response and tone
Works comfortably as a low or high gain device.
A total of 6 external controls, and one internal control for the ultimate flexibiliy:
*Gain control with unique taper to provide excellent control over overdrive.
*High/Low balancing control tone control
*Volume Control with output up to 15Vpp with correct power supply!
*New dedicated midrange control
*New external character control for adding 'momentum' to guitar notes, or keeping things tight
*New external brightness control for controlling top end content, and to help match the Tube Zone to different amps.
*New internal presence control to further help dial in the Tube Zone's tone.
Single ended class A output.
Ultra-bright blue LED.
Striking chrome plated case and knobs.

The backing track is in Bb minor so a Bb minor pentatonic scale!

Truth In Shredding: Shred This Competition: ends 18:00 GMT August 31, 2009

Special thanks to these awesome dudes, who are also the competition judges!

Tom Quayle - backing track duties:

Improvised solo

Rick Graham - video editing duties:

'Still Hurts' by Marco Sfogli - Rick Graham

Plus a special thanks to my little buddy. Plus special thanks to Hedras Ramos for the cool hat!

Tom Monk: aka Shred Junior, you are a star my friend!

Keith Merrow: 7 string chop

Keith Merrow- "Shorted Out" clip with Agile 7 String

Daniel Realpe: nominated for best instrumental rock song

Daniel Realpe says:
The guys in Just Plain Folks nominated my instrumental "Unfolded Will" for best instrumental rock song,

This one is from my very first CD "Before our eyes" which you can get here: (It´s my band Hidden Path´s website)

it´s nominated for best instrumental rock song, and this is a live version for that song (some parts I had to re-learn, this is a song I wrote in 2004)

You can find more about these awards here:

Instrumental Rock Song nominee

Richie Kotzen: NYC sam ash appearence

On July 27, get up close and personal with world-renowned blues-based guitarist Richie Kotzen at the Sam Ash, 48th Street Guitars in NYC, from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

The former Poison and Mr. Big guitarist will perform, sign autographs, and demo his equipment, including his Fender guitars. Kotzen is one of the few artists to have two signature model Fender guitars in Japan; a Telecaster and a Stratocaster bearing his name have each been top sellers in Japan since they were introduced in 1995.

Kotzen and his band are also performing in New York the following evening at B.B. King Blues Club & Grill at 8p.m. Tickets are available at
more details

George Lynch: tweeting on twitter?

tweeters follow:

Erik Mongrain: harp stays sharp to the bottom of the tap...

Harp-guitar made by Pellerin guitars presented at Montreal guitar show 2009.

Guitare-harpe - essai par Erik Mongrain

News: guitar hero 5, where are those guitars!!!

More confirmation that the cash cow that is guitar hero is being well and truly milked arid! ER... what happened to all the guitars... the 24 tracks announced are lightweight, pop nonsense with an extremely low note quotient! Now where is the special fusion edition, featuring guys like Allan Holdsworth, for the real game heads!


Guitar Hero today confirmed two dozen rockin’ tracks which will be featured on Guitar Hero® 5’s massive 85-song on-disc set list. From the legendary folk rock sounds of Bob Dylan’s “All Along The Watchtower” to the thumping drums of Coldplay’s “In My Place”; indie darling Vampire Weekend’s memorable “A-Punk” to the Beastie Boys’ rock/hip-hop hit “Gratitude,” the game features the widest variety of today’s rock hits and classic tunes from some of the biggest names in music. Numerous bands are also making their music video game debut — Band of Horses, Darkest Hour, Elliott Smith, John Mellencamp, Rose Hill Drive, The Bronx, Tom Petty and Vampire Weekend. Prior to its public release, Wolfmother’s first single off their upcoming album Cosmic Egg, “Back Round,” is now available for free digital download exclusively at

When Guitar Hero 5 ships on September 1, living-room rock stars will be able to rock any way they want, to the expansive set list including to these stellar tracks:

• Band Of Horses - “Cigarettes, Wedding Bands”
• Beastie Boys - “Gratitude”
• Beck - “Gamma Ray”
• Billy Squier - “Lonely Is The Night”
• Blur - “Song 2”
• Bob Dylan - “All Along The Watchtower”
• Children Of Bodom - “Done With Everything, Die For Nothing”
• Coldplay - “In My Place”
• Darkest Hour - “Demon(s)”
• David Bowie - “Fame”
• Deep Purple - “Woman From Tokyo ('99 Remix)”
• Elliott Smith - “L.A.”
• Iggy Pop - “Lust For Life (Live)”
• Jeff Beck - “Scatterbrain (Live)”
• John Mellencamp - “Hurts So Good”
• Kings Of Leon - “Sex On Fire”
• Queens Of The Stone Age - “Make It Wit Chu”
• Rose Hill Drive - “Sneak Out”
• Santana - “No One To Depend On (Live)”
• The Bronx - “Six Days A Week”
• Thrice - “Deadbolt”
• Tom Petty - “Runnin' Down A Dream”
• Vampire Weekend - “A-Punk”
• Wolfmother - “Back Round”

For more information about Guitar Hero 5, please visit

News: Shred off and win a CD solo appearence!

The Absence Shred Off contest is a chance for our fans to track a guitar lead on our up coming album "Enemy Unbound"

The Absence Shred Off

Paul Gilbert: java rock land

Hey Jenn gave a new lick of paint to her blog

In here latest post
Mr. Big, the American rock band, will appear at Java Rocking Land at Carnaval Beach, Jakarta, Indonesia, on August 8, 2009.
full details

News: guitarmonkee gear web site

Got GAS... then this one is for you!

Tod Says:
How did I become a guitar monkee? My obsession with guitars started when I was 13……. that was 26 years ago when I realized those cool sounds spewing out of my stereo speakers were an electric guitar driving hot tubes into distorted bliss. I just had to figure out how to make that sound on my own. I just HAD to. My Dad finally relented on getting me a guitar for my 15th birthday after asking me why I had shoe strings tied to an old tennis racket. After telling him that was my air guitar he decided to open a pandora’s box and got me a Peavey guitar and amp. Not the greatest gear but it was enough for me to spend hours on end trying to play “Iron Man” and “Smoke On The Water” in between short bursts of lame attempts to solo that I’m sure sounded more like a cat dying than anything resembling Eddie Van Halen . Even though I wasn’t that good and it was very hard at first learning to play… I was hooked and hooked deep. I took lessons from a local guy who was a graduate of GIT. Andy and a good friend Jon taught me a lot and helped me get where I wanted be. I was able to figure out songs and tones on my own and after awhile I also graduated on to better gear. Not only did I love playing guitar, writing music, and playing in bands… I loved the gear side too. I’ve always been a tinkerer, so with a whole world of pedals, pickups, amps, and effects I was in heaven trying new things or trying to get my favorite guitar player’s tone. I was a tone chaser from the get go. Over the years not much of that has changed except I’ve become a decent enough player to have fun with it. I’ve owned so many amps, pedals, effects units, and guitars it’s actually borders on an illness us guitar players affectionately call G.A.S. or Gear Acquisition Syndrome. Still to this day at age 39 I just love the feel of a guitar in my hands making music come alive through a piece of wood with wires and magnets that’s plugged into an electrical circuit that’s modified and amplified by tubes, resistors, filters etc. which can make the sound scream, cry, moan, swoosh, warble, cut, occelate, and feed back into sounds that can become your voice to express how you feel at the moment. I feel playing music is one of best experiences in the world where you ride waves of sound with other guys in a band… speaking to each other without saying a word. I’ve never lost that feeling. I hope I never do.

Joe Satriani: chickenfoot face culturevideos

Video interview with drummer Chad Smith and guitar player Joe Satriani from Chickenfoot. FaceCulture spoke to Chad Smith and Joe Satriani about their favorite Van Halen period, Chickenfoot, their debut album Chickenfoot, the first Las Vegas gig, serendipity, Sammy Hagar's phonecall, Chad's song, Joe Satriani's songwriting and more. (26/06/2009)

Website artist:

Warren DeMartini: talks about ratt's latest tour

Warren DeMartini says:
Hmm…well the business has changed a lot. To be honest there are many more things bands can do now on their own…in some cases they don’t need a record label. For us I think the formula remains the same. We will let our record company handle promotion and we will concentrate on the music and putting on a great live show when we tour. I mean, it’s a long process…doing this is a serious process and you basically have to set a goal and work towards it everyday. It’s an exciting process to be a part of right now!
full interview

Tour dates:
Ratt on tour with Extreme. confirmed dates are as follows:

Jul. 10 - Pryor, OK - Rocklahoma **
Jul. 12 - Amarillo, TX - Midnight Rodeo
Jul. 13 - San Antonio, TX - Scout Bar
Jul. 14 - Odessa, TX - Dos Amigos
Jul. 16 - Tempe, AZ - Marquee Theater
Jul. 17 - Los Angeles, CA - Wiltern Theater
Jul. 18 - Las Vegas , NV - Hard Rock
Jul. 19 - Anaheim, CA - Grove
Jul. 22 - Denver, CO - Ogdon Theater
Jul. 23 - Kansas City - Crossroads
Jul. 24 - Chicago, IL - House Of Blues
Jul. 25 - Toledo OH - Harley Davidson-LOT **
Jul. 26 - Cheswick, PA - Ches-a-rena
Jul. 28 - New York, NY - Nokia Theater
Jul. 30 - Westbury, NY - Westbury Theater
Aug. 02 - Allentown, PA - Crock Rock Festival
Aug. 05 - Springfield, VA - Jaxx ***
Aug. 06 - Sayreville, NJ - Starland Ballroom
Aug. 07 - Hampton Beach, NH - Hampton Beach Casino
Aug. 08 - Clearfield, PA - ClearfieldCountyFairgrounds **
Aug. 15 - Sky City, NM - Sky City Casino **
Aug. 29 - Uncasville, CT - Mohegan Sun Casino **
** RATT only
*** EXTREME only

George Lynch: new lynch mob cd announced

Frontiers Records is excited to announce the worldwide release of the Lynch Mob come back studio album entitled Smoke And Mirrors to be released on September 18 in Europe and October 13 in the USA.
After seventeen long years singer Oni Logan and guitar wizard George Lynch found their way back together and again show their amazing abilities in some killer new Hard Rock songs.”I would say this new record "Smoke and Mirrors", is the record we should have put out as a follow up to "Wicked Sensation"...better late then never I guess...” , says Lynch presenting the new record.
full details

Greg Howe: great video from texas 1989!

Kudos to Chris Johnstone... really great to see videos from that era!!


Howe began his solo career during the 1980s shred era, joining Mike Varney's Shrapnel Records label and releasing his self-titled debut album, Greg Howe, in 1988. His next album, Introspection, was released five years later in 1993. At this point, he began to demonstrate a significant stylistic change which remains prevalent to this day; incorporating elements of jazz fusion into his playing, as well as borrowing heavily from the legato-based technique of fellow guitarist Allan Holdsworth, all whilst mixing in a bluesy, groove-laden vibe and the frequent use of odd time signatures.

With the release of altogether five solo albums during the 1990s, he also participated in two collaborations with Richie Kotzen: Tilt and Project, in 1995 and 1997 respectively. At the end of the millennium, he briefly adopted a heavier, neo-classical approach for his 1999 release, Ascend, which featured Ukrainian keyboardist Vitalij Kuprij.

He once again changed his musical style in 2000, with Hyperacuity—an experimental album which displayed almost none of the instrumental rock elements of his debut. Following an extended hiatus after the 2003 release of Extraction (which featured bassist Victor Wooten and drummer Dennis Chambers), he returned with a new studio album entitled Sound Proof in 2008, which has since indicated a subtle shift to a style more reminiscent of his 1990s work.

Apart from his solo career, Howe is also a session musician and has worked and toured with well-known artists such as Michael Jackson, Enrique Iglesias, *NSYNC and Justin Timberlake. He currently resides in Long Beach, California, and is working as a producer and guitar instructor. One of his upcoming endeavors is an online instructional website entitled GH Workshops.


Steve Hillage: gong fire up the magic teapot for another tour!

gong 2032 album

New Album 2032
l November 2009 Tour

Gong 2032 album

The Legendary Psychedelic Rockers release the stunning new studio album

The album continues the mythology of the "Radio Gnome Trilogy"

click for hi res

"2032"is released on Monday 21st September 2009 on the band's own label G-Wave, in special association with A-Wave, the label of Steve Hillage and Miquette Giraudy's successful dance music project System 7. International licensing and distribution is handled in the UK by SRD. The catalogue number is AAGWCD001.

click for hi res

The highly anticipated new album will be supported by a UK Nationwide Tour that starts at the Bristol O2 Academy on 19th November (Ticket Hotline: 08700 603 777, Produced and engineered by Hillage at A-Wave Studios, London, additional production was conceived by Daevid Allen at Bananamoon Observatory in NSW, Australia.

Described as exhilarating, compelling and other worldly, "2032" represents the first time Hillage has recorded with original Gong founder, Daevid Allen, since 1974's "You" album. "2032" is a new instalment that continues the Gong's famous ‘Radio Gnome' album trilogy which includes the milestone psychedelic progressive rock albums - "Flying Teapot" (1973), "Angel's Egg" (1973), and "You" (1974).

The band line-up on the album includes Daevid Allen (guitar, lead vocal): Steve Hillage (lead guitar), Gilli Smyth (Space Whisper and poetry), Miquette Giraudy (synthesiser), Mike Howlett (bass), Chris Taylor (drums), and Theo Travis (sax and flute).

Special guest performances on some tracks include former Gong member Didier Malherbe (soprano sax, duduk, and flute) and Yuji Katsui (electric violin) of the Japanese progressive/psychedelic jam band Rovo.

Original Gong members Steve Hillage, Daevid Allen, Gilli Smyth and Miquette Giraudy, wrote the songs for "2032" when they were in Australia. The new album also grew out of the enthusiasm and fun the band experienced playing live together again.

Together with the rest of the band, Daevid and Steve have crafted a rich and fresh sounding powerhouse of an album that is a more than worthy successor to the legendary Radio Gnome trilogy that Gong released at their creative peak in the 70s.

click for hi res


2032 is the year that the Planet Gong makes full contact with the Planet Earth - and a major new chapter in the continually evolving Gong mythology," says Daevid Allen.

The premise of the new album is that Gong exists in our solar system as an evolved and peaceful planet operating as a unified field of high frequency matter which renders it virtually invisible to Earth. Its representatives, the Octave Doctors, first visited Earth during the late sixties when hopes were high for a shift towards world peace.

Upon their return, they have opted to survey our progress and have made an offer of assistance at this decisive time in our planetary history. The year 2032 is thought to be the time when the existence of Planet Gong will be officially recognised by astronomers on Earth and will signal the first public arrival of these space visitors.

A Japanese animation video will also be released "How To Stay Alive", one of the tracks featured on the forthcoming album.

click for hi res

"2032" - Album Track Listing

  1. City of Self Fascination
  2. Digital Girl
  3. How To Stay Alive
  4. Escape Control Delete
  5. Yoni Poem
  6. Dance With The Pixies
  7. Wacky Baccy Banker
  8. The Year 2032
  9. Robo-Warriors
  10. Guitar Zero
  11. The Gris Gris Girl
  12. Wave And A Particle
  13. Pinkle Ponkle
  14. Portal

1. City Of Self Fascination- One of the heaviest and freshest tracks Gong has ever made - a passionate message from space visitors on Earth with a completely modern sound.

2. Digital Girl - A modern sounding track about a new generation of 21st Century super fast thinking females, at a time when creating the truth becomes the political willand news becomes today's novel.

3. How To Stay Alive - Gong do a great sounding rap track - a message from the octave doctors liberally translated by Daevid Allen. An edit of this track will be Gong's new Japanese animated video, based around Daevid's celebrated Gong drawings and characters. The track ends in musical bliss with a trademark Gong "glissando" instrumental, including the sound of the duduk played by former Gong member Didier Malherbe.

4. Escape Control Delete- The surprise track of the album mixing a super-melodic riff with a classic beat from 70s German "krautrock" and a rich melodic song extolling the beauties and wonders of the Planet Gong. The track ends with a perfect Gong spacey guitar based instrumental section.

5. Yoni Poem / 6. Dance With The Pixies - Yoni is the eternal spirit of nature, the voice of animals, the smell of plants materialised into witches who move between that world and the world of. This 2-song suite starts with an edgy, abstract poem by Gilli Smyth and Miquette Giraudy that mutates into a bouncy groove about dancing pixies.

7. Wacky Baccy Banker - Crazy and punky, this song features a famous Gong mythology character code-named ‘The Switch Doctor', a prankster who adopts many human roles. Here he sings about his recent stint as a merchant banker. The direness of the credit crunch is transmuted by a searing guitar solo into a final dreamy glissando as the banker gets infected by Planet Gong telepathy (otherwise known as Radio Gnome).

8. The Year 2032 - A wistful and romantic song about the year 2032, when planet Gong makes official contact with planet Earth, putting our suffering and disastrous conflicts in deep perspective. This is a piece of pure Gong music, with soprano sax performed by special guest and original Gong member Didier Malherbe.

9. Robo-Warriors- Robo-Warriors are peace machines which can resolve the conflict of opposites by absorbing and transforming conflict into a single unified field. This is another piece of active poetry performed by Gilli backed with electronic beats by Miquette (showing her System 7 dance music hand).

10. Guitar Zero- A totally infectious guitar and drums groove, mixed with a chant looking towards a new peaceful future and a wild sax solo by Theo Travis.

11. The Gris Gris Girl- This is possibly the most sophisticated song on the album, with many changes and sections. The song itself is almost folky with driving acoustic guitar and flur by Didier Malherber.The story of the mystic female other half of the Switch Doctor, steeped in the magical traditions of New Orleans.

12. Wave And A Particle- Nothing is solid. Everything is composed of dancing atoms, even human beings and especially solid things like tables. The 3rd of Gilli's poetry/electronics collaborations with Miquette sets up the album for the final phase.

13. Pinkle Ponkle- A completely mystical 5-4 tribal trance dance celebrating the unique Gong sound, encouraging people to be their own leader and preparing the opening of the direct portal to the planet Gong.

14. Portal- Things develop into a progressive Hillage instrumental composition that roars to a complex electric storm of a climax before gradually settling into a blissful and gentle floating end, The Portal is open.

click for hi res


Originally formed in Paris during 1968 student riots, Gong weave their unique magic of psychedelic jazz fusion, eastern/world music, synthesizers and loops, and deep space funk and punk - all laced with self-deprecating humour. Forty years on their underground influence is massive - and moving onward to 2032!

2009 is the 40th anniversary of the band Gong, which was conceived by founding members Daevid Allen and Gilli Smyth in France in the chaotic times of post-May 68 creative turmoil. Gong quickly rose to become one of France's biggest bands and as a social phenomenon being France's equivalent to the Grateful Dead.Â

By 1971, Gong made their UK debut at the legendary Glastonbury Festival.

After releasing their second album "Camembert Electrique" on the BYG label in France in 1972, Gong developed a relationship with the new start-up Virgin Records. This was the point when Steve Hillage and Mike Howlett joined the band. The "classic" period of 1973-75 was a roller-coaster ride of gigs festivals and album releases with the first Virgin Records album releases "Flying Teapot", "Angel's Egg" and "You".

One master-stroke was Richard Branson's idea to re-release "Camembert Electrique" at the budget price of 50p. This became a top ten smash album and sold over 70,000 copies in the UK, bringing the band to an ever wider audience.

By the autumn of 1974, the "You" album hit the UK Top Ten album charts during the first week of release. These three albums between them have sold well in excess of 1 million copies. Since being re-mastered and reissued by Virgin in 2003 they continue to sell.

Gong is cited as a primary influence by many new generation "psychedelic" artists and also by many major figures in the dance music scene.

The full surviving line up first played together again in November 2006 at a special sold-out Gong event in Amsterdam. In 2008 this line up played two sold-out shows at the London Kentish Town Forum and the Queen Elizabeth Hall. At the latter, Gong were invited to play by Massive Attack as part of the 2008 Meltdown Festival.