90% OF IT IS YOU

Everybody likes to have stuff.  (Insert the late George Carlin’s stand-up rambling here.)

Everybody likes to have new toys and new tools to perform their jobs and hobbies better, and everyone has had a moment when they wished they had better tools. People want to hone their favorite tools and craft them into the best they can have, or acquire gear that may or may not make their work feel more automatic.

There is a saying that a good carpenter does not blame his tools, though there is another saying about using the right tool for the job; everyone that has ever made something has at least one story about something doing a job it wasn’t really made to do, and doing it well, like the shelf brace that’s keeping the screen on my laptop from crashing on my hands (thank you, guy that Google pointed me at.)

Some time ago, I thumbed through a book about David Gilmour’s (of Pink Floyd) favorite guitar. The book is written by one of his technicians and in the foreword, David himself thinks a little too much attention is brought to the instrument, and on first glance, he is quite right. It is an unremarkable Bullet Stratocaster made at the time when Fender’s guitar-building quality was declining.

There are only three things that make David’s stratocaster special today: a copper-foil radio shielding he made to reduce noise, the shortened tremolo bar, and the fact that David is its principle player.  The guitar could easily be substituted with other instruments (and at times, it has been) but David Gilmour will still sound like the guitarist in Pink Floyd.

I believe somewhere I have posted videos of Tucker: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kulc_gAuuus Tucker can make a pile of toys sound good, though that link will take you to a video with slightly more expensive stuff (on purpose.)

I listen to a lot of debate and argument about hardware, software, instruments, gear, machines, whatever, but in the end, the tools are really only the last part of the action. If you don’t hone your skills, it doesn’t matter how good your tools are; people will eventually know if you do or don’t do something well.

That rambling was a padding to make sure the next rant doesn’t run on too long or hit to hard. I’d like to thank the 20-30 people (according to bit.ly stats) that had a look at the bulletin board page about Bleep South this Friday. I’m not sure if the promoter has made himself too busy to answer messages or whatever, but anyone that’s visited that bulletin board recently enough will see that whether or not the show will go on has been brought into doubt. If it does go on, many people on the list will no doubt not be there because of the confusion. (Minusbaby will not be there because he took another gig and didn’t let the promoters down here know that he cancelled.)  What shows in the bulletin board is a lot of immaturity and personifies the things I don’t enjoy about making music. I’m sorry for anyone that’s been trying to follow it.

I have a plan in case the show does not go on.  I don’t know that I have any readers in the Southeast to know if anyone was actually planning to go to this thing, so if it doesn’t go on and you went through the trouble to come and see, I apologize in advance.  For the moment, I will be there until its promoter tells me otherwise. I live near enough that the wasted gas isn’t such a big deal for me.

Hope everyone is doing well, see you next time.

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