Boundaries and Creativity

Uncategorized Apr 30, 2020
Some friends of mine have just started a new songwriting group. I've done live song groups before – this new one, in fact, is inspired by Jack Hardy's long-running Houston street song meetings, which several of us used to attend in New York....
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Indirect Listening

Uncategorized Apr 23, 2020
Every six months or so, I put on Louis Armstrong and wait for two of my main philosophical impulses to slug it out. On the one hand, I'm for listening to the things that just hit you on a gut level. Be honest with yourself about what you ...
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Last Call For The Fingerstyle Five

Uncategorized Apr 14, 2020
According to my friend Tim, there was a college professor in the William Patterson jazz program who began every sentence with the word "Dig." As in,

"Dig – now, if you're playing over a minor seventh chord in bar two..."

I've...
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"Who's It For, What's It For?"

Uncategorized Apr 14, 2020
The studio where I've been shooting my new Youtube live streams is only ten minutes from my house. Last fall, when it was still a half-hour drive to work, I would get on various podcast jags, including Seth Godin's "Akimbo," which made for some...
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So Not A Marketing Email

Uncategorized Apr 14, 2020
Word on the street is you can't make an omelette without shattering a few eggshells. Inside the sanitized cocoon that is the Fretboard residence, we know this to be true, because omelettes are one of those foods which pass over our children's...
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Improvising on "Key To The Highway"

Uncategorized Apr 13, 2020
I feel like I've spent more time thinking about improvising than almost any other aspect of playing music. Some of that time has been spent wondering why I couldn't do it any better, some of it has been spent wondering if it was even possible to...
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Arranging "House Of The Rising Sun"

Uncategorized Apr 11, 2020
At its simplest, arranging just means starting with the bare bones of a song – a single pass through the melody and the chord progression – and making a series of choices. If you play solo fingerstyle guitar, your first choices might...
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The Membership Is Open

Uncategorized Apr 10, 2020
I did my first live-on-Facebook performance today. I know The Face is not everyone's jam, particularly among the Fretboard subscribership, but it has its moments. The ironic thing is that while social media lets you reach people all over the...
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What To Work On

Uncategorized Apr 08, 2020
Let me just come clean and admit our family's not exactly spending the quarantine teaching ourselves conversational Latin or putting together a professional mandolin orchestra. Last weekend, the big kerfuffle was over whether or not to...
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Dominant Dozen Replay Available

Uncategorized Apr 06, 2020
We have a friend who was smart enough to invest in Zoom about three months ago. Of course, I didn't see that one coming, even though I've been using Zoom myself for live online workshops and Q&A sessions since last fall.  And given that...
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