Guitar Techniques - - CONTENTS -

Your com­ments and com­mu­ni­ca­tions...


The Ca­narios tran­scrip­tion in the Au­gust 2016 is­sue caught my eye. It was the same in Oc­to­ber 2001 when Ca­narios was also pub­lished in GT and I quickly and grate­fully made my first

pur­chase. (This was a com­pletely fresh tran­scrip­tion and very dif­fer­ent to the 2001 one – Ed). That is­sue also had a cool Robben Ford les­son by Guth Go­van. In 15 years GT has un­locked a lot of what was mys­ti­fy­ing to me as a young gui­tar hack – chords with more than one num­ber, or al­tered note; aaaag­ghhh! The best part was dis­cov­er­ing other play­ers. I might have learned noth­ing but I still would have found out about Danny Gat­ton and Scott Hen­der­son. Your con­trib­u­tors pro­vide out­stand­ing de­tail and I urge other read­ers to check the notes that go with the tran­scripts. All styles get a look-in with GT but there are some play­ers from 80s bands you should look into. Char­lie Burchill and John McGeoch per­haps. Any­hoo... Love your work. Chris Mc, Ade­laide, SA

Yes, you’re right, Chris. There’s a whole slew of play­ers that came out in the post punk years and who seemed to have slipped through GT’s net. Ac­tu­ally, it’s been men­tioned be­fore so there’s clearly an ap­petite for that style – which I might de­scribe as ‘punk at­ti­tude, pop sen­si­bil­ity’. We of­ten se­ri­alise styles or eras in the mag­a­zine and that whole 80s raft of play­ers would fit per­fectly in such a run. Many of our guys are deeply into them too – they’re at an age where they were weaned on The Smiths and U2 rather than The Bea­tles and Stones. We’ll look into it – I prom­ise!


To­day I re­ceived is­sue 260 and I was glad the mo­ment I saw on the cover ‘40 Great Blues In­tros and Outros – grab a huge new lick­bag’. But I have to as­sert, I know these in­tros and outros. Six years ago in is­sue 174... same licks... why do you do that? These are great licks but please don’t copy and paste. I un­der­stand that new sub­scribers or read­ers won’t know, but faith­ful read­ers do. GT is an ab­so­lutely help­ful mag­a­zine to ex­tend mu­si­cal un­der­stand­ing and get new ideas, and so I sub­scribed last year. But I’ve been buy­ing it reg­u­larly here in a lo­cal shop in Vi­enna, Aus­tria. I hope GT as­sists us in the fu­ture with ‘new’ old and mod­ern licks. Nor­bert Schwarz

You are right in spot­ting that the In­tros & Outros fea­ture was a re-use, Nor­bert. But for lots of com­pli­cated rea­sons, which I won’t go into here, we’ve stopped tab­bing ac­tual tracks – apart from Brid­get’s new ar­range­ments of clas­si­cal reper­toire. So we are con­cen­trat­ing more on the core GT strengths, which are its bril­liantly ex­clu­sive tech­nique, style and the­ory ar­ti­cles. Stuff you won’t find any­where else – un­like tabs, which you can Google in three sec­onds. How­ever, you are right in point­ing out that new read­ers, and those that only buy the mag­a­zine spo­rad­i­cally (which our dis­trib­u­tors tell us is most of you – and that ap­plies to all mags, not just GT), won’t have seen it. Also, it seems such a shame not to use a fab­u­lous fea­ture that we printed all those years ago, that’s still ut­terly rel­e­vant to­day, but that prob­a­bly 90% of our cur­rent read­er­ship didn’t see. I’m sure it will have been of great use to many read­ers out there. We will be run­ning more re-used ar­ti­cles, but care­fully se­lected and al­ways from sev­eral years ago so the fewest peo­ple pos­si­ble will have seen it twice. TV sta­tions live and breathe on re­peat pro­grammes, but GT will only ever redo ar­ti­cles when we feel they are rel­e­vant and will not have been seen by most read­ers.


I’ve been a GT fan since 1995 when I bought my first is­sue (#9, with the How to Play It Like... col­umn fea­tur­ing Jimi Hen­drix’s take on Like A Rolling Stone) off the mag­a­zine stand at the now-de­funct Tower Records.

I’m not par­tic­u­larly keen on solo­ing per se (though there are many play­ers whose so­los I love); I am fas­ci­nated by chords and chord pro­gres­sions first and comp­ing styles sec­ond. Over the past sev­eral years GT has pub­lished many, many fea­ture ar­ti­cles and se­ries on chords, har­mony, and the videos of­ten have lead sheets with the ba­sic pro­gres­sions and how to use them. Lovely stuff! Keep it com­ing! (The Fred­die Green piece this month is es­pe­cially nice be­cause it shows how he changed his voic­ings ac­cord­ing to the mu­si­cal con­text he was in).

Would you mind pass­ing this along to Brid­get Mer­mikides about #258’s tran­scrip­tion of Alonso Mu­darra’s Fan­ta­sia X?

Hi Brid­get: I’ve got all your col­umns from day one. You’ve re-in­tro­duced me to tunes I only heard in their orig­i­nal op­er­atic or piano form, etc – as well as to a lot of mu­sic I never knew or had heard with­out know­ing who they were by or what their names were. But this par­tic­u­lar is­sue’s piece – Alonso Mu­darra’s Fan­ta­sia X – is ab­so­lutely bril­liant! I’ve got al­most every vi­huela and Re­nais­sance lute CD there ever was, is, and will be, and I just wanted to thank you for a ster­ling tran­scrip­tion and ab­so­lutely one of the clean­est, most pre­cise and ex­pres­sive per­for­mances of this piece I’ve ever heard (on CD or YouTube). And the record­ing qual­ity is such that I can ac­tu­ally feel as well as hear how your nails pro­duce the sound on the strings! Ku­dos!

Ps. Neville: You needn’t print this. I am just so gob­s­macked by this lat­est is­sue that I fi­nally de­cided to get off my bum – which is now 63 years old – and write to you guys to thank you for yet an­other fan­tas­tic is­sue of GT! Though you had some keen com­pe­ti­tion in the late 90s, you’ve al­ways been the best bang for the buck (or the pound, or the Euro) in the world. I’m a lan­guage teacher so I find the How of your writ­ers as stim­u­lat­ing as the What. Thanks to all of you! Allen Balaz, Taipei

That’s such a lovely let­ter that I thought I would print it, Allen. As you know, I passed it onto Brid­get and I be­lieve she replied sep­a­rately. The peo­ple that cre­ate fea­tures for GT put in so much time and ef­fort. It makes it so much more worth­while when some­one writes such won­der­ful words. So thanks again – we ap­pre­ci­ate your com­ments.


Brid­get: great touch, tone and tech­nique

John McGeoch of Mag­a­zine and Siouxsie And The Ban­shees

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