Thursday, 13 August 2009

Rob Chapman: ml 1 signature guitar ML1 starting to cook!

Rob Chapman Signature Guitar ML1 - Blog 7... sounds really cool!

Rob Chapman Signature Guitar ML1 - Blog 7

Mark McGuigan: better by the minute!

Mark McGuigan just getting better and better!

Mark McGuigan - 'Doobie Vibe' Jam

Kiko Loureiro: goes to rock house!

Arguably the best guitar player in the world, Kiko Loureiro was at the Rock House back in January to work on four instructional products with us. Enjoy some of the pics.

Kiko Loureiro Behind The Scenes @ Rock House

News: another guitar blog for ya!

Thanks to the
Strat O Blogster
for spotting this one! The Guitar Column: A health dose of equipment posts sure to keep those with GAS real busy...

News: truth in shredding makes it to Guitar Edge magazine!

Wow, what can I say... but thanks to the editors of Guitar Edge magazine, you obviously have great taste!!!

You can view my little article online You can get a digital version of the magazine on line. This looks like the future of magazines to me, rich glossy and electron based, just like Nicholas Negroponte said it should be. Sign up now it's free for your magazine

This months issue includes Cool interview with Robben Ford Killswitch Engage duel shred attack, Joe Satriani, John 5, and Wayne Krantz

Guitar Edge is also on:


Russ Parrish: steel panther solo competition update!

Here's the great man himself challenging you all try and better his solo - come and have go if you think you're good enough! Just upload a video of your solo as a response to Satchel's intro. Post your response

Steel Panther Guitar Solo Competition intro from Satchel full list

Here are some of the best to date

Death to all but metal solo - Tom MacLean [ TIS shred of quality!]

Shrimpster: DTABM

Death to all but Metal solo Mark Davis

My Steel Panther solo - Death to all but metal! Clinton Forster

Bill Ruppert: beyond normal guitar

Bill Ruppert:
All Instruments heard were produced by the Roland VG-99 and a regular guitar.
No Synthesizers or Midi used.©2009 Ruppert Music

Sitar/Tablatar By Bill Ruppert Roland VG-99

Moog Chapel By Bill Ruppert Roland VG-99

The 12th By Bill Ruppert Roland VG-99

Parker Wallace: pokey, sloth and slimer shred this 2! the return of the shred!

100th video response to this competition!

Wow the Slimer clan really went to town on this one! Cool intro by Pokey... then Slimer woken from his silent slumber... "I like to S H R E D!"

Slimer's second entry to the best contest ever called "truth in shredding- shred this". Thanks Sloth for being my shred homey! Cant give enough thanks to Laurie Monk for his support to guitar players around the world! Thanks to Tom Quayle for his incredible backing track, and anyone else involved in the competition!

shred this competition entry- SLIMER and SLOTH

The warm up to this video was an impromptu secret gig with full light show with Sloth... aka "Yngwie Chubsteen" and Slimer ripping it up under the hot stage lights!

SLIMER jams w/ Uncle SLOTH after 2 weeks of lessons.....

Thanks, Slimer crew Baby Beluga, GPS, and POKEY

Slimer and the Slobs 1st improv concert 7/24/09

News: TIS comment updates

Ok guys and gals... I have changed the settings on TIS comments again. This time I have to view before approval and posting. This means 99% of the time these will be published as soon as I check them out... it's just I have some people spamming comments with links to other web sites. So do not stop commenting! Thanks for your patience...

Greg Howe: us tour dates announced

US tour dates: Greg Howe will be touring this August with Simon Phillips - Drums (Jeff Beck, Pete Townsend, Toto etc.), Marco Minnemann - Drums (UKZ, Paul Gilbert), and Eddie Jobson - Keys/Violin (Frank Zappa).

Dates announced are:

Aug 17 2009 "Jammin Java" Vienna, VA
Aug 19 2009 "Regent Theatre" Arlington, MA
Aug 20 2009 "North Star Bar" Philadelphia, PA
Aug 21 2009 "Beachland Ballroom" Cleveland, OH
Aug 22 2009 "Martys" Chicago, IL

To get tickets and more information please visit the tour section at Greg's Official Site:

Marcel Coenen: suncaged instrumental

A live version of this instrumental song, to be found on the second Sun Caged album "Artemisia".
This song is recorded live at Prog Power festival in The Netherlands, Baarlo, venue Sjiwa.

Sun Caged - Engelbert The Inchworm, Live At Prog Power Europe 2008

Elias Viljanen: sonata arctica japan cd pre order

The Days Of Grays:
Sixth album release from Sonata Arctica featuring the amazing new guitarist Elias Viljanen. Limited edition includes bonus CD that features the band's "UNIA" tour performance in Europe.

Catalog No.: MICP-90045
Label/Distributor: Victor Entertainment
Format: CD
Number of discs (or other units): 2
Release Date: 2009/9/16 (See more items released this month)
Price: 3048yen (3200yen Tax incl.)
[US$ 31.38]

Bonus Track: bonus track

Leslie West: woodstock interview

Leslie West, says:
We were in San Francisco and L.A. We did a couple of shows before we got there. We heard about what was going on in New York Thruway closed and all this. We had to rent our own helicopter in New York City. We took off from the 60th Street heliport. We got up there, and we saw all these thousands of people, like ants on the ground. Like, Jesus, whered they all come from? Nobody ever saw anything like that before. We got to stay that night and watch the whole show, because the pilot would not fly back at night because there were no lights, and he didnt want to fly into the mountains.
full story

Les Paul: dead at 94, RIP

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. — Les Paul, the guitarist and inventor who changed the course of music with the electric guitar and multitrack recording and had a string of hits, many with wife Mary Ford, died on Thursday. He was 94.
According to Gibson Guitar, Paul died of complications from pneumonia at White Plains Hospital. His family and friends were by his side.
As an inventor, Paul helped bring about the rise of rock 'n' roll and multitrack recording, which enables artists to record different instruments at different times, sing harmony with themselves, and then carefully balance the "tracks" in the finished recording.

Condolences and best wishes to his family and relatives

R.I.P. - Les Paul - June 9, 1915 - August 13, 2009

Bryan Aspey: come in shred this 99 your time is up!

Wow the videos are still coming in... 99th from Bryan Aspey: and very tasty it is too. Bryan Aspey says:
My entry into the Truth In Shredding "Shred This" Competition; It's been great to see some serious cats come out to play on this one, and I thought I'd join in on...

Shred This Competition - Bryan Aspey


Seemingly divergent musical paths have always landed Bryan Aspey in good company: by the age of 16 he held the guitar chair in Virginia's All-State Jazz Ensemble, performed with jazz pianist Billy Taylor , and played with guitarist Pat Metheny in a televised broadcast.
After completing his studies in Jazz Improvisation, Composition and Audio Engineering at James Madison University, he toured widely and recorded with Scottish fiddle sensation Bonnie Rideout . Having played to sold out crowds across the country and abroad, he has also been warmly welcomed at home in the Washington, DC area at the John F. Kennedy Center Concert Hall, the Barns of Wolf Trap, and the Meyerhoff Symphony Hall.
Aspey has since continued his studies with renowned Paraguayan guitarist Berta Rojas, and has developed a repertoire of solo guitar music from Latin America. Beyond his accomplishments as a performer, Aspey is a devoted music educator, composer, producer and recording artist with four CD's to his credit, including Frozen Hours, his debut solo album. CD Baby

Kirill Konyaev: 15 years old and a tribute to andy james!

Kirill Konyaev, age 15, is playing Aftershock from Metal Soloing Techniques by Andy James.

15 Year Old Guitar Prodigy

Milan Polak: ernie ball musicman deal in the bag!

Milan Polak says:
I am very proud to announce that I have joined forces with Ernie Ball/Musicman who make some of the best guitars in the world. So I have recorded and uploaded a video featuring 8 solos of my new album "Murphy's Law" feat. the Axis Superstar & the Luke models:

8 solos of the '09 release "Murphy's Law" (Lion Music) featuring the Ernie Ball/MusicMan guitar models "Axis Supersport" & "Luke". You can purchase your personal copy of "Murphy's Law" at: html Thx for the support!
P.S.: you just gotta love that Garfield cup in the back at the end of the video...

"Murphy's Law" solos - Milan Polak (feat. extreme string skipping, sweeping & picking)

Tom Hess: how to start a successful music career

How To Start A Successful Music Career by Tom Hess

Do you need some immediate help on how to start a successful music career? Here are 4 key things you can begin to focus on right now to begin.

Practice to become a professional musician – Continuously work on improving your musical skills, but before you think, “That’s obvious. Tell me something I don’t know”, there are important things to consider. It’s not necessarily about learning more techniques, improving your guitar speed or increasing the size of your chord vocabulary. Think about what a professional musician really needs to know and do musically. Playing your instrument well at home is one thing, but playing well consistently in the studio or on stage is completely different, thus the training and practicing required to play well in those professional environments are also very different.

Yes, you should continue to improve your overall musical skills, but if you want to start a successful music career you will need to specifically practice your ability to play well ‘consistently’ in a variety of higher-pressure situations. - Amateurs practice something to ‘get it right’. Professionals practice to ‘never get it wrong’.

So the next time you practice your guitar, instead of trying to play something ‘faster’ or learn something ‘new’, focus on playing whatever you can already play ‘consistently well’.

Think about a professional guitar player like Eric Clapton. He’s not a great technical guitar player at all, his knowledge of music theory is probably not vast, but one of the reasons why he became successful in his early days (and continues to be successful today) is because he can play on his own level ‘consistently well’ every night in any environment.

In addition to the ‘consistency factor’ just mentioned, there are other things professionals practice that most guitar players typically don’t implement in their practicing. For example, having a really good ear is something that professional musicians rely on heavily, yet most guitar players don’t dedicate practice time to develop their aural skills.

Your Recordings – If your music skills are good and your songs are good it might be all for nothing if your recordings suck. You do not necessarily have to invest huge amounts of money to record in a great studio, nor do you have to invest huge amounts of money in a great home studio (although it is nice), but you DO need the playing on your recordings to sound TIGHT (making everything rhythmically PERFECT, appropriate dynamic playing, etc.)!

Do NOT make the mistake of thinking, oh this is only a demo, so tight playing is not that critical when making a simple demo... I assure you, IT IS! Virtually anyone in the music industry today who hears your music will immediately notice if the performance recording is not tight. And if it’s not, they won’t be interested. Why? Because your “demo” is supposed to show others both your songs and your musical abilities. The assumption will be that if your demo is not tight, then your live sound will be amateurish and putting you in the studio will cost a fortune when you have to play something 500 times to get it right.

So if you want to start a successful music career, you should practice recording yourself frequently in order to make your studio playing as tight as possible.

Your Live Playing – It’s been said that successful music careers are built on the stage. While not all musicians start a music career this way, it is true that your live playing is a critical component and can make or break your chances of developing a music career.

Record companies want bands that can sell themselves from the stage. That means when a band plays live people listening should want to actually buy the band’s music, and all other band related merchandise. It’s a fact that your fans will buy more during and after a great live show than after a mediocre one even if the songs played are exactly the same. The music industry (or successful bands you might like to join) look very closely at your ability to create a great live show experience for audiences.

Most musicians and amateur bands don’t truly work to improve their live performance skills. Great live playing is much more than simply playing songs while standing (and hoping not to make mistakes)… yet for the majority of local musicians and bands this is all they really seem to focus on when playing live.

Where your fans live is really important – If you want to get signed to a major record label, which do you think is better?

A. To have 5,000 fans in your country (or around the world).
B. To have 5,000 fans in your local area only.

The answer is “B”. It is much easier to get 5,000 fans around the country (or the entire world) than it is to get 5,000 fans in your local area. Everyone in the music industry knows this (including record companies). If you sold 5,000 copies worldwide of your new album on your own, that is good accomplishment, but if you sold 5,000 in your local area on your own that would be a major accomplishment in the eyes of record labels.

Why does it matter? Record labels know that if you can sell 5,000 copies in one location on your own, then it makes sense that a record company could probably sell even more copies not only in your area but in many cities/countries.

By having so many fans in one area you demonstrate to the music industry that you have a lot of proven value to offer and their willingness to invest into your music career will go way up!

Although the internet is a great tool for musicians, many artists are focusing on reaching out to the whole world at once and don’t invest enough time and energy into building a valuable local foundation of fans.

Before the internet, bands typically tried to build a strong local fan base around their city. Those that succeeded in this area where most likely to build a successful music career. But since the internet has opened up so many new possibilities, many unsigned musicians/bands have forgotten the basics which are still very relevant to getting signed to a major record company.

What’s next? – Obviously there are a lot of things you need to do to start a successful music career, but this article is designed to get you started now so that you will be in a better position to do the next steps after you have implemented the concepts above. Here’s a quick summary of action steps to take now:

  • In addition to improving your overall musical skills, practice to play ‘consistently well’ with the skills you already have.
  • Practice recording yourself frequently in order to make your studio playing as tight as possible.
  • Work on improving your live performance skills (stage presence, playing in totally different environments, etc.).
  • Build your fan base locally as well as internationally (using different strategies for each).

Get 15 additional free music business tips that will help you build your career.

About the Author

Tom Hess is a professional touring guitarist and recording artist. He teaches, trains and mentors musicians from around the world. Learn more about how to become a professional musician. Visit to get 15 free music career tips.