One of the biggest problems that I've had while I have been on this website is the sheer amount of crap that I've had to put up with from some of the people who read my lessons and reviews. I have always done my best to make my lessons and reviews as easy to follow as possible, and always point out any problems with them that occur to me so that nobody gets confused.
Well apparently some people don't seem to get that I was simply trying help people out as a few people simply started looking for new submissions of mine and simply rating them low to make sure nobody else looked at them. I am all for everybody else's opinion but this just felt like cyber-bullying to me.
The reason why I have not submitted a lesson to this site is not what I've just said however. A while back I was contacted by the administrator of this website and offered a job to write lessons for another website, on the condition that they were exclusive to this website he named. Any more information on this will have to come from him and not me, but I'm simply happy that somebody wanted me to keep on posting the lessons that I had been writing.
I am not arrogant and don't consider myself better than anyone, heck I don't consider myself a 'complete' musician yet as there's still a lot for me to learn. However, if someone has hired me to write lessons then that surely must mean that they aren't useless as some people claim them to be. I never started writing with the intention of being hired. I just wanted to get more guitarists further along in their playing.
If anybody want's help with guitar then give me a shout; if anybody wants to know my opinion on their hardware then let me know: if people think I've missed something out with my lessons then I'll gladly give them a second check to be sure; if people want to follow my lessons to mark them down simply because I don't speak in their accent or use long sentences that are impossible to follow, then get stuffed.
Thanks for reading this far and I'm sorry if I've offended anyone.
This is a tricky but good question that I find a lot of people actually get wrong. You see there is no amp maker that is truly superior to another, but rather different amp makers cater for different styles of music and so can achieve different tones. Always listen to an amp very critically before you buy it.
Here's my low-down on amp-makers that I've used in the past:
Marshall: very good for a classic rock/old school metal sound in the valve range, and are currently used by countless professionals, however the transistors are a way behind other makers in quality to me.
Fender: the top amp maker for those wanting to get a clean sound, but very little gain quality, even when pedals are used to compensate.
Vox: very good classic-rock style amp maker producing nice tones for stuff like Bad Company, but other makers may retain more clarity of tone.
Blackstar: the new boys but with fantastic tone flexibility due to the ISF (infinite shape feature) installed, great for almost all rock styles, and have surpisingly good power, but are comparitively expensive.
Line 6: known as a metal amp maker, they have a ridiculous amount of built inn features for getting tones, however they can sometimes fail to deliver a specific tone as a result.
Bogner: Mr Bogner also designs a lot of the Line 6 valve range, but his own amps are far better. Fantastic reviews are given and I use his Alchemist stack presently. However he is a boutique amp make so they are sometimes pricey, but head to head would destroy any marshall of similar price. The least powerful amp he makes is louder at highest volume than a kerry king signature marshall.
This is definitely a question that has to be answered whether musically or philosophically.
You see, you are never going to be able to see the benefits and faults in things that you simply ignore or cast aside. If you spend you're life ignoring what other people are doing, chances are you aren't going to turn out like other people; however if you observe what they're doing then you can make an educated decision whether to be like them or not.
I'm not like most other people for two reasons: firstly I'm autistic and I'm not the least bit ashamed of it, secondly I have seen how easily other people around me can be ground to a halt by things that seem very easily overcome to me, so I don't follow the crowd. I don't force my opinion on anyone because I believe it's everybody's right to do what they want with their lives. I was able to decide not to follow the crowd and to decide to become a guitarist because I learned what was entailed and what the consequences and benefits of my actions would be.
Musically; all the great guitarists have about a million tricks up their sleeves. This is not the result of them playing the same lick over and over, but the result of them constantly experimenting with different styles. Jeff Beck has inspired Jimmy Page since the 60s and has played everything from heavy rock to tech-no to jazz to hillbilly, and all at the same time. Looking at everything gives you the option of ignoring what you don't like and using the bits that you do like. Simply not listening to anything other than one single direction is completely your choice, but in my opinion is a recipe for disaster for a guitarist. I listen to rock all the time, but everything from Satriani to B.B.king to Iron Maiden and Def Leppard to Deep Purple and Led Zeppelin to The Answer and Dream Theater to Thin Lizzy.
Simply put, be yourself, and use everything you can find around you to make yourself into the guitarist you want to be. Have the knowledge of a classical composer, the spontaneity of a jazz virtuoso, the emotion of a blues master, the flair of a rock axewielder and the presence of a metal-monster.
Reason 1: It's one of the most basic freedoms you have. Nobody can force you to play something on the guitar, as you can practice what you like. By giving it up it almost like returning to your cell after walking outside; you just won't feel the same without it.
Reason 2: Other more popular bands/musicians in the industry have got where they are by sticking at what they do. A lot of them have done so in defiance of what people have said about them, including those who review them. Don't ever believe that you are crap just because some guy with a fancy degree in music/english says you sound bad. Maybe you might need a bit of work, but journalists are paid to be biased, as biased articles sell more then impartial ones.
Reason 3: If you find that you can't find musicians who are interested in joining a band immediately near you, search websites like Joinmyband and this one to advertise yourself to people who will be interested in what you are doing. It's simply a case of asking the right people.
Reason 4: Playing your instrument is fun. So what if you don't have a band immediately or have thousands in equipment, are you really going to let that destroy your hobby? It's something that you can do without having to answer to anybody when you get home. You can play songs the way you want them, simply playing to relax is very therapeutic. Don't whatever you do simply put your instrument(s) on ebay because you can't play it straight away. You have to practice at anything worthwhile to become good at it.
This is kind of an experimental blog I'm posting. You see I've been able to play through a variety of amplifiers both valve and transistor as well as guitars with sounds and styling that are completely different from each other. I'd like to get to know about experiences that other players have had with their equipment in the past, and share my experiences using the equipment I have.
Thing is, some people say that you can put the worst guitar in the world through a good amp and it'll sound brilliant, but I've put some good guitars through amps fit for the scrap-heap when new and they've sounded good.
To start the ball rolling I'm going to tell you my personal favorite and least favorite guitars and amps I've used and/or owned.
Least favorite Amp(s) I've Played: Pro-performance 30 watt transistor, 100 watt Marshall valve state of unknown product name(I can't remember what it said on the front).
Least favorite Guitar I've played: Yamaha Stratocaster imitation(it was a strat made by yamaha, not a fake guitar)
Favorite Amp(s) I've played: Line 6 Spider III 30 watt transistor, Bogner Alchemist Stack Head and speaker(speaker included in purchase also of Bogner manufacture)