Monday, October 3, 2011

Guitar tutorial: How to arrange your own fingerstyle?

Blind Blake wasn't called the Ruler of Jazz to no end - he had the title before Elvis even! Any guitarist who has investigated finger-picking soul strategies will know no less than maybe a couple of his melodies. Blake's music roused numerous later guitarists and even legends, for example, Reverend Gary Davis and Enormous Bill Broonzy confessed to listening to his records with esteem.

Source: Johny from

Arthur Blake's style was exceptionally exact and fresh, with a bouncy jazz syncopated feel. In spite of the fact that with a large portion of his pieces we can without much of a stretch work out where to put our fingers, it's regularly the sheer speed of his work that annihilations those not willing to put a considerable measure of time into the style. Fortunately, he additionally delivered slower melodies which had essentially the same structure, so we have bounty to go on.

Having cut more than 120 sides, it more likely than not been amazingly hard to fluctuate his yield enough to keep the general population's advantage. Blake did this by utilizing a few keys (however generally C and G) and trying different things with the bass examples and general planning. For instance, in "Tootie Soul," he begins off at a lackadaisical pace and all of a sudden gets serious about the planning, complete with single string runs tossed in! It's exceptionally testing and colossal enjoyable to play.

In his instrumental "Guitar Rings" he indicates us one of the Brilliant Tenets of soul guitar - how not to exhaust the audience! The piece is more than 3 minutes in length and he never rehashes himself - noteworthy.

Two of Blake's pieces are incredible in view of their unpredictability and velocity. "Police Pooch Soul" in open D tuning is a quick gem of exactness picking and it's very uncommon to hear a devoted interpretation by a present day guitarist - Ry Cooder is the nearest there's ever been, I think.

"West Drift Soul" is a showcase for Blake's trademark system, which was to roll the thumb crosswise over two bass strings with the goal that we hear two notes "bu-bum" rather than only one. When this is done utilizing a substituting bass picking design the outcome is a to a great degree syncopated sound that nearly resists conviction. When I first heard this I was sure that two guitars were being played. It's verging on difficult to play it like Blake and one day I'll hit the nail on the head. Saying that, I'm finding that some of my understudies are improving a vocation of it than I do, which is what it's about.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Love amongst the Cherry Blossoms


Wedding fever is running hot in our household at the moment as we prepare to take to the skies and head for Japan. Last minute arrangements, the rush to find the 'right' dress, the 'perfect' shoes and the list goes on.

It's a classic love story. They met on a plane and fell in love. Now it's off to a fairytale wedding amongst the cherry blossoms.

This got me thinking about wedding traditions. These days couples are opting for less traditional weddings like beach and garden ceremonies with a celebrant rather than the traditional chapel wedding. The old superstitions and traditions that went hand in hand are now gradually fading away. So I thought I'd share a few of some of the perhaps lesser known superstitions:

  • Stag parties were first held by ancient Spartan soldiers, who kissed their bachelor days goodbye with a raucous party.
  • Engagement and wedding rings are worn on the fourth finger of the left hand because it was once thought that a vein in that finger led directly to the heart.
  • It's good luck for the bride to step into the church with her right foot first.
  • It's bad luck for the bride to see a pig, hare or lizard running across the road
  • It's also bad luck for her to see an open grave or to meet a nun or monk on her wedding day.
  • Dressing the bridesmaids is to fool the evil spirits, so they will not know which one is the bride.
  • The new bride must enter her new home by the main door, and must not trip or fall. It's a bad omen if the bride stumbles. (Hence the custom of the groom carrying the bride over the threshold.)
  • The spouse who goes to sleep first on the wedding day will be the first to die. (Oh dear!) 
    So what can we expect from a wedding in Japan? 

    The wedding is a cross-cultural, true love-match and promises to be a mix of traditions. Let's look at the complexity. The groom is the third generation of Moyanese descent to be born in South Africa and was raised in Australia. The bride's family has a Japanese history that can undoubtedly be traced back through the centuries, although they embrace the modern era. The wedding party will wear traditional Japanese wedding dress, but the guests are free to choose either traditional or western. It promises to be a colourful day and an amazing photo opportunity.  

    I did some research into some of the old traditions and came up with some interesting results.
    During the age of aristocracy, the marriage system was known as 'Muko-iri' meaning that the groom was 'adopted' into the bride's family where he would provide labour for an agreed period of time to maintain the family. 
    In the 14th century, the feudal lords reigned and marriages were arranged for political and diplomatic reasons with a view to maintain peace and unity amongst themselves. During this time, the marriage partners had no choice but to marry the one the 'nakado' or matchmaker chose for them.

    The tradition changed to the 'Yome-iri' marriage system. During this time, the groom would only visit his wife in her home nightly. It wasn't until the first child was born or he lost one of his parents, that she could take up her rightful place at his side in his home.

    Interesting facts? Do you know of an unusual wedding tradition or superstition? Share it with us in your comments.

    Until next time, Sayonara