A single, what does it take to make  Podcast

We are releasing a new single today, "Pale Moonlight". I want to share with you the entire process of a song from beginning to end.

The beginning: This usually starts with me noodling around on the guitar to find a lick. The lick for pale moonlight is really quite interesting in that it never lets you know if the piece is in a major or a minor key. The piece is in D originally and we moved it up to E to better fit Paula's vocal range but that is getting ahead. There were originally 3 verses. There still are 3 verses but the original first verse is where all the lyrics came from. Once the main lick is put to lyrics and some song structure decided on we start rehearsing the song so we can share it the same way with our musicians that we perform with.

Learning the song: The next phase in the process is getting together with musicians and playing the song for them while they come to terms with what it is they are going to do. We spent Saturday's and Wednesday's for a little over a year rehearsing the 13 songs that are going to make up the new album "Shuffle" This song was one of the first song's we got down together as a band.

Capturing the song: This is the funnest part and also the most expensive. There are many ideas and variations on my process this is just my favorite way to record a song. Once we have rehearsed and know the songs like the back of our hands, I schedule a recording date with a goal in mind of capturing a great drum track and a great bass track. Guitars and vocals usually end up very shallow sounding when the whole band is in a live room due to the bleed of the other instruments. Once the drum tracks and the bass tracks are solid, I schedule a day by myself to go into the studio to lay down all the layers to make the recording how I want it to sound. In this particular instance there was an electric guitar part that insisted on being included in the recording. When the guitars are all done. I schedule another day for us to go in and do any vocal work that needs to be done. We record all new vocals so that Paula's voice isn't covered by the drums bass and guitar that were recorded live in the room. We then have to make decisions on do we leave a single voice, do we double the voice, harmonize the voice etc... etc... and the decisions are dictated by the effect we are trying to achieve on the song. In this case a doubling was enough.

Mixing and Mastering the Song: Wait, did I say capturing the song was the most fun? Mixing the song is way up there too.(Aside from Creating and rehearsing the song, the whole process is a blast) The final day is the mix day. This is the day where I meet with the sound engineer and we turn the song into the recording you hear. We listen to make sure things are balanced, eq all instruments, do some fade in's and fade out's add delays or effects to any instrument that seems like it needs it. If my sound engineer gives me a crazy look like I'm crazy most times I think about what he said and others I say point well taken but I really want this idea.

Releasing the Song: First there are a bunch of codes that have to be gathered so that your music can be tracked and you know how well it is performing. Then I get artwork specs together and make a piece of art based on those specs. Sometimes Paula does the artwork and sometimes I do depending on who's idea wins. Then I type a write up about the album. First it is released at my website www.aaronmlewis.com.(I can control pricing and everything from my website) and then I use CD Baby for an international distribution. Once the album is up and released I start contacting radio dj's from around the country and try and get them to play the single on their station. The greatest thing about getting to this point is there is new creative ideas that have occurred and I am blessed to be able to return to the first stage in this process and go back, jack, do it again.

 Pale Moonlight Download

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  1. Pale Moonlight

Greg Gould of Thick and Thin 

The next musician I have actually had the honor of performing with in a Band situation. We were in a group called Uncle Nick and the Recluses. Greg and I were the Recluses. Nick Harmon wrote some great tunes. I got to noodle and Greg provided us some bass lines to lean on. Here is a little about Greg who besides being a great musician, is also great person to know to find out about nutrition and food. Without further ado. Greg Gould.

I began with the recorder with my brother and sisters, we performed at Xmas parties. We were just okay, nothing to write home about, but we also had jam sessions with percussion instruments from time to time, nothing scheduled. 

When I was 14, I got a guitar which is what I wanted to play because, I wanted to be in a band like the Beatles. I took a few classical guitar lessons but that was not the sort of music, I wanted to play. My best friend who became a professional musician/entertainer would help me tune my guitar over the phone. He was in my freshman home room class in High School and he formed a band with another one of our home room classmates. They got a guest appearance on a local television program. I was their roadie, I used to haul an Fender Bassman amp around in a taxi cab. I went to all the rehearsals. 

So I was mostly self taught after those first few classical lessons, learned the fundamentals of 12 bar Blues, and the cover songs of the era, like House of the Rising Son. 

My first electric instrument was a bass guitar… which my buddies and I broke the high string by tuning it to guitar tuning, the first day, I had it and I continue to play on a three stringed bass until I gave that instrument away. I mostly played nylon string guitar back then. 

I practice every day while watching Netflix. 

My first record was a Yardbirds album. My mother was musical, she sang French folk songs, but otherwise, we didn’t listen to music much as a family. My family is composed of mostly visual artists. 

In 1985, my house burned down and all my album melted into a single big blob of vinyl. So I replaced my music collection with cassette tapes (little did I know…) I eventually switched over to CDs. I don’t really purchase music that much anymore. I listen to the radio a lot. And I go to live concerts regularly. And I play with my group regularly. 

I’m playing in a duo with my son on drums and me on bass, we call ourselves: Thick and Thin. 

When others play with us, we’re called the Side Hustles and we have a loose format: when you’re in the room with us, you’re in the band. If you’re not in the room with us, you’re not in the band. That way we eliminate commitment issues. We don’t play songs, we play grooves, so there aren’t difficult arrangements to learn. We rely on improvising and visual cues. The riffs we use are classic and thus familiar which makes it easy to join in. We rehearse Sunday mornings while other people are sleeping in. So that’s a challenge for some musicians.

Emilio Semihazah 

When did you begin playing music? Love for music started as a baby child....i began playing the drums at 15 years young. 
What instrument(s) do you play? i play the drums...heartbeat of the world 
Do you come from a family of musicians? my uncle"s play music.  
Are you self taught or do you have training or a mixture of the two? i am self taught although i have learned from all the greats and legends. 
How often do you practice? I practice everyday for at least 4 hours on the drums...when i am at home i smoke weed, and listen to records...jam on my practice pad...my life is music 
What was the first album you purchased?  I believe it was red hot chili peppers..blood sugar sex magick

Does it still influence you? yes, of course....love the funK

How? the songwriting on that record is groovy. would like to say that one of my favorite artist's and albums...Jimi Hendrix..Electric Ladyland....masterpiece. 
What was the last album you purchased? LOgic~Everybody 
What is the most bizarre thing that has been shared with you at a gig? Groupies desires to share themselves with no conversation or knowledge of who I am as a person. They see you on stage and offer their bodies. That is a bizarre practice.
Do you have a favorite instrument? Drums. 
Does it go on tour? YEAH. YEah!!!!!!!!!! 

Emilio performs with Oldevils and, The Shine. 
Emilio has played with The Howlin' Wolves, Wasted Inc., Ghetto Blast, Charles X

Seth Worsham 

When did you begin playing music?  October of 1993. 

 What instrument(s) do you play?  Electric and acoustic guitar, ukulele, bass & piano (last three on a very limited level) 

 Do you come from a family of musicians?  Yes, my Mom plays piano and handbells, and my aunt played the flute.  My Mom, uncle, 2 aunts and my grandmother used to travel locally in IN singing at churches.  I am the only guitarist/professional/career musician in my entire family to my knowledge. 

 Are you self taught or do you have training or a mixture of the two?  I took lessons for 10 years before attending Musicians Institute's Guitar Institute of Technology (GIT) in Hollywood, CA in 2009.  I haven't taken a lesson in over 6 years but have been thinking about it lately.  I primarily just learn things now that interest me as a musician that push my playing in different directions from articles and friends who are better than me.   

 How often do you practice?  I don't have a set practicing schedule, since I teach every day.  I do really drill something if I'm determined to learn it, or I discover I am not happy with a particular part of my playing or need to get something down for a gig/etc.  I tend to practice on things that are out of my comfort zone, as I don't know any other way to continue to get better. 

 What was the first album you purchased? Does it still influence you? How?  The first guitar related album I can remember buying was Twisted Sister's "Big Hits & Nasty Cuts".  It most certainly still influences me, as Twisted Sister was the band that made me want to play guitar. I have many fond memories of thinking how hard the songs on it sounded (when I could barely play anything) and driving around blasting it in my car.  It arrived in the mail the day I got my driver's license.  \m/ \m/ 

 What was the last album you purchased?  Gary Moore - Run For Cover 

 What is the most bizarre thing that has been shared with you at a gig?  A very puke inducing redneck girl's breasts when she flashed me, fortunately from a distance...I don't play live with my glasses on and as I told my drummer on set break, "thank God for blindness."  The same girl asked me if I wanted to get married when I went to the bar to get a drink.  Good times... 

 Do you have a favorite instrument? Does it go on tour?  I do - my Ibanez JPM P1-P100.  It's a 1995 John Petrucci signature guitar (he plays for Dream Theater).  A good friend sold it to me and it has more mojo than any other I've ever had.  It is a very rare and difficult instrument to find, so it doesn't get gigged or toured.  I use it for teaching, recording, playing at home and rehearsals.

Seth's webpage

Seth on Youtube

Sunlight where have you been? 

Hello all, I have been wanting to write this for awhile but I was going through things inside of me I did not know how to voice in a way that was healthy for me and Paula. We have been working on the 2nd Sunlight album, “Shuffle”. We are very proud of the way the album is coming out and are excited to share it with you in the very near future. We have shared it with some people and the response so far has been “I don’t know which song to pick as my favorite” Which are words that are sweet to my ears. 

As some of you may have noticed we have taken a break from gigging since the spring. There is a reason for that and it has to do with turning lemons into lemonade. The last three places we performed like to call themselves venues. At all three venues we played our hearts out like it was Carnegie Hall. All three venues, at the end of the night, we had fans like you who signed our mailing list, really enjoyed themselves and we enjoyed our time with the fans. Upon calling the venue and asking for a return date all 3 offered this answer. “While we find you to be a well prepared and good sounding group, your music does not fit what we are trying to do.” This starts the beat yourself up portion of being a full time artist as I am trying to support myself and being told by the places that my music is not good enough for their venue. Then I see a video of what they really like at the venue, a drunk guy playing out of tune, singing out of tune, messing up rhythms due to his drunkenness. I came to the understanding of what I think it is and why I wasn’t asked back. The world is telling me that I am better than that and I need to take my act to appropriate venues not ones who share music as a secondary part of the day’s activities. 

Paula and I spent a little time discussing Sunlight and what it means to her, what it means to me and how we can make Sunlight still do it’s thing without being shoved in the corner and trying to be louder than the drunk table of people who are celebrating a birthday. Here is what we came up with. We will still work on and record our music as that is the part of Aaron that has to be shared. When we record an album we will do shows in support of the album to help get the word out. The shows will be house concerts and performance halls with a stage and a seated audience that is there to listen to music. We will perform for Paula’s 30 year class reunion in October which falls out of the plan but sometimes we break the rules. 

Paula’s main passion is painting. She started dealing with heavy anxiety while performing and both of us came to understand that some of that stems from her not painting on a regular basis. She always wanted to try her hand at music and she discovered what a lot of people discover with music. In order to stay on top of your game and be really good at it you have to divert many hours of your life to it and it started cutting into her painting time. 

My main passion is composing music. Some days I write songs, some days it is a string quartet, some days it is a piece for oboe and clarinet and most days it is a piece for classical guitar. I work on things as they come to my mind. It is a Gemini trait and I also have lots of unfinished scores because that is also a Gemini trait. In order for me to share my compositions I have to find performers, so if you are a performer and want to have a unique piece of music written for you contact me so we can talk. I also teach the guitar. I find it very important to pass on my knowledge of the guitar to others so the tradition of guitar music can continue. 

Sunlight performs all of my original songs, I perform all of my classical guitar pieces and I am at the mercy of others to get my other music performed by something other than a computer midi noise. 
I look forward to seeing you out in the world at a Sunlight performance or maybe at an Aaron M. Lewis “Alien guitar music” show. And maybe it will be over dinner someday. Whatever it is our paths have crossed we are meant to know one another and I am blessed that through the music of Sunlight I have gotten to know you. 

3 types of guitars. So...... what's the difference 

As a teacher of guitar I am often asked the question, what is the difference between an acoustic guitar and an electric guitar? Today, I am going to give a little lesson for all who are thinking of learning to play the guitar. It is an investment when you purchase an instrument and you should be as informed as possible before you make your purchase. I will share my opinion on some things and please remember, it is an opinion.

1. Classical/ Flamenco guitar. These guitars are nylon string based. They pay hommage to the days when gut was used as a guitar string. We have advances in technology so they have been nylon strings my entire life. They are simple machines. They have just the basics needed to make a guitar and require an intense mastery of luthery to manufacture a proper instrument. Concert level guitars are manufactured with fine exotic woods and beginner instruments are manufactured with plywood and laminate wood. These guitars have no truss rod in them so they are manufactured with a wider neck. The tuning pegs on any guitar should turn easily. The amplifier is the hole on the soundboard and the performers skill. The tradition of these guitars is for solo performance where the melody and harmony are performed by the performer. These guitars are used today and are the guitars that guitar music was played on since the 1500's until the late 1800's when steel string acoustic guitars started being used. There have been many changes to the guitar in that time. For a comprehensive look at the guitar I suggest reading "The Guitar" by Harvey Turnbull. Never ever ever put steel strings on a guitar that is made for nylon strings. The bridge will rip off because it is not supported for the tension the steel puts on it. If you live in a dry climate as i do always humidify your guitar. Check with your local trusted music shop on whether you need to humidify your guitar or not. Adjustments are not very common with these instruments.

2. Steel String acoustic guitar. What prompted the change to a steel string instrument? The classic thing with all guitar music. Volume. The steel string guitar was better suited for playing in the large ensembles of the twentieth century. At the turn of the century you had big bands and if you have ever sat a guitar down next to any wind instrument the guitars soft spoken voice is a problem. The action on inexpensive acoustic guitars is generally the biggest issue. The action is how far the strings are sitting above the neck. If there is a large distance it will be painful to play and you will quit in a short amount of time. If your guitar is one of these and that is why you don't play much, find a local guitar shop with a reputable repair man.( He should have learned the craft of guitar repair somewhere not just a guitarist who fixes things) and ask him if this guitar's action can be fixed. Some can, some can't, but it beats buying a new instrument if it can. Acoustic steel string guitars have thinner necks so they have truss rods in them you can adjust if the neck warps in any way. Both the classical and the steel string can be played with a pick or fingers however traditional classical music had no such thing as a pick. The choice on the classical between a pick or not a pick was between using fingernails on your picking hand or no nails on your picking tone. All is a matter of choice and preference and should be left to an individual to decide. Never ever ever put nylon strings on a steel string guitar as there is not enough tension to keep the instrument working correctly. Humidity is an issue for both acoustic guitars nylon or steel. Please check with your local shop for needs concerning humidifying your guitar. Adjustments can and should be made to these instruments. How often depends on the quality of the instrument.

3. Electric Guitars Why did we start making electric guitars? Again, this was brought about due to volume and guitarists being unable to be heard (little did we know it would lead to guitarists going deaf, but that is another story) The following statement came from Monica M. Smith  in her article The Electric Guitar how we got from Andres Segovia to Kurt Cobain in the Summer 2004 Volume 20 No 1 issue of Invention and Technology.  " The first guitar pickup was made by a Gibson engineer named Lloyd Loar, a functional coil wound pickup in 1923. The first commercial guitar was offered in 1929 by the Stromberg-Voisinet company of Chicago. Les Paul was also experimenting with making the guitar electric in his early teens in 1929." The electric guitar is a steel string guitar. It has many more adjustments and personal choices to make than either of the other instruments unless you get a custom made guitar. The bodies can be either solid or semi hollow. Examples of each are, a Fender Stratocaster, which is a solid body electric guitar. Any guitar that has F holes or those cool scrolly things on the soundboard of the guitar generally is a semi hollow body guitar. They require an amp and cable for sound production. You do not have to worry about humidity as much with an electric guitar. But neck adjustments and general adjustments are done a lot more often.

It is my opinion as a teacher who holds a degree in music and a lifelong player of the guitar that if you undertake a study of the guitar you make this choice. Learn how to play a classical/flamenco guitar. It teaches you how you really sound, it does not lie. A steel string is harder on the fingers than a nylon string guitar and I have seen many a student quit because of this particular issue.  An electric guitar can hide how you really sound because it sounds really cool and it is a much harder switch from electric to classical. If you want to be an electric guitar player as soon as you start to get a feel for how you sound on an acoustic and understand the correct principles of guitar playing you should move over to your instrument of choice. Hopefully, you will find joy and beauty in each of the instruments as I have.

 

Painted guitar by Paula Manning Lewis

 

 

Susi Wolf Storyteller 

We go through life having plans for things. I was operating a musical performance space that catered to small acoustic acts. One day my phone rang. On the other end of the phone I was asked this question? Do you allow storytellers in your performance space? We talked for a little while and the answer to her question was I do now. I stopped planning so much and started allowing more to happen. Story plays such an important part in all of our lives that we don't realize until we consider all of our shows, all of our theater, our music, all owe their own form of tribute to story. This wonderful storyteller Susi Wolf will make you wish you had experienced this pure version of the art form of  "Storytelling". So one day I announced I was going to blog about my musical friends and Susi contacted me shortly after, can storytellers be included and again my answer was of course.

When did you begin storytelling? 

As a small child I would draw on a magic slate and make up a story, erase it, draw the next scene, and so on. Story has always been a huge part of my life without my even acknowledging it as such. In my 20s I went to acting school for 2 years and then went to clown college for 1 year. For 13 years in Dallas I made my living as a professional clown (“Shaboom the Clown”), as well as other characters. 

When I saw the movie “Out of Africa” my life changed. During the scene where Meryl Streep took Robert Redford into the library after dinner and told him a story, I literally felt chills all over. I knew I was supposed to be a Storyteller. That was the beginning (over 30 years ago!). 

What instrument(s) do you play? 

I actually play the Limber Jack, which is an Appalachian percussion instrument (looks like a wooden puppet on a dowel). The mountain people did not have drummers but loved keeping rhythm so this wooden instrument was created. I demonstrate the Limber Jack when I tell traditional Appalachian “Jack” tales. I also have dabbled in spoons a bit. 

“When I tell a Story my words are the percussion that keeps the beat so we all know how to dance together.” 
        - (c) Susi Wolf, 2017 

Do you come from a family of storytellers? 

Nope – came from a traumatic background which probably was instrumental in developing me into a storyteller (my creative side was greatly enhanced during these painful times). 

Are you self-taught or do you have training or a mixture of the two? 

I believe I came with a natural ability to create and tell stories. But I have received training in various forms (conferences, colleges, guilds, other storytellers, etc.). So it is a combination of being self-taught and formal training. 

Once I knew I was to be a storyteller, I still had some misconceptions. I thought it would be like doing a monologue (I was a trained actor – monologues were familiar to me). But then I attended the National Storytelling Association’s annual conference (which was held in Dallas that year) a mere month later. Once I experienced professional storytellers on stage, in workshops, etc. I knew I was in a different realm. I told myself to be humbled, to sit at the feet of the masters, and to learn, learn, learn! Which I did. 

How often do you practice? 

I am constantly reading new stories, writing tales, and telling them to myself. On a daily basis, I would say. I am filled with joy whenever I tell stories – even if I am alone. 

What was the first folktale book you purchased? Does it still influence you? How? 

I was gifted (from a master storyteller) a must-have for all who are learning oral tradition: Best-Loved Folktales of the World by Joanna Cole. It is a treasure chest of learning about worldwide folktales and the cultures in which they thrive. To this day I will periodically thumb through it for new stories to tell. The language is very rich in most of the stories and it is an opportunity to see how the same folktale is told in various cultures around the world (i.e., there are over 800 versions of Cinderella). 

What is the most bizarre thing that has been shared with you at a gig? 

I did healing storytelling at a women’s lockup. I loved this work and I was always guided intuitively (I am a Shaman) about what stories to tell. On my first night they were hesitant at first but finally warmed up. I kept sensing (yes, I heard a guidance) that I was to tell the Princess and the Pea fairy tale. I kept resisting, fearing the women would think I was being patronizing. It kept happening: “Tell the Princess and the Pea.” Finally I relented and they absolutely loved it. 

The guards took them back to their rooms and I saw one woman huddled in a corner beckon me. She whispered how sorry she was that she could not listen to the story but she was in so much pain as she had just gone through detox. She explained that her most favorite story in the whole world was the Princess and the Pea and that her grandmother used to tell it to her. She began to cry, asking how did she get where she was, what had happened in her life, and just generally pouring out her soul. I remained silent, holding her and rocking her. Finally they took her to her room and the therapist asked what happened. I told her and the therapist explained that this woman was very sick and they had doctor’s orders to give her pain med's but for two weeks she had refused to speak to anyone. “You are the first person she’s said a word to. Maybe now we can help her.” 

I have never questioned again when I am guided to tell a story. 

What was the last book you purchased? 

I purchased Trail of Tears by Joseph Bruchac. I am Eastern Band Cherokee/Celtic and it is the tragic tale of the attempt to annihilate my entire tribe by removing us from our homeland and forcing us to walk to the Oklahoma territory. 

Do you have a favorite story? 

My favorite story is the one I am telling at the moment. But I guess I could characterize it further by saying I like short, pithy tales that pack a punch. Story is the ultimate form of communication and connection. So stories that make you feel or ponder are my favorite. 

Does it go on tour? 

I do tour throughout the year doing storytelling events and one-woman shows. I love seeing the reaction of people to Story, especially those who have not heard a storyteller before. 

Another thought 
“Sleeping dragons may awaken as we move through the shadowy forests of life’s paths. Story is the Light…the lantern dispelling the dragon’s darkness and guiding us to safe haven.” 
        - (c) Susi Wolf, 2013 

Susi Wolf Contact Info 
Tel: 505-881-1220 
www.wolfsongcreative.com (for storytelling, one-woman shows, and training workshops) 
and 
www.wolflifecoaching.com (for counseling and healing services) 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/susi.wolf.storyteller

Miguel Romero 

Today's musician Miguel Romero I met through my brother in law Travis Manning. They were in a band together at a time when I was in the middle of raising children. I would look forward to the next time NME came to town so I could hang out with people my age and talk about music. We spent many evening's after shows Downing really bad fast food as Del taco is the only thing open when the music's over and the band is hungry. Without further ado here is Miguel Romero.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When did you begin playing music? I started playing music about 8 years old 

What instrument(s) do you play? Guitar 

Do you come from a family of musicians? I do. My Mom played traditional spanish and flamenco guitar. and my Dad played folk and country music. 
My Uncle had an electric guitar and amp. he showed me how to play my first blues scale and bending strings as well as finger picking and the classical guitar standard Romanza.. 

Are you self taught or do you have training or a mixture of the two? Mainly self taught but i have had music classes in high school and college. 

How often do you practice I try to practice about an hour or two everyday. 

What was the first album you purchased?Def Leppard - Pyromania

Does it still influence you? How? i think what influences me still about it is the production. the guitar tones 
..the panning of the guitars and atmospheric intros etc. great album. 

What was the last album you purchased? 
Primus- Green Naugahyde 
nowadays I just pay the streaming music service fees 

What is the most bizarre thing that has been shared with you at a gig? 
not at a show but on tour.. Paul Lasorio in Tuscon..we had just got off the road and Paul took us to eat and he takes us to this russian butcher place. 
it was actually pretty good 

Do you have a favorite instrument? I've had a Gibson Challenger since i was 14.. i love that guitar. 
my favorite now is my Schecter Blackjack Solo II as well as my Alvarez nylon string. 

Does it go on tour? 
the gibson no.. all the others I take to play live. 

New Mexican Erection

Hadron Collider

Nosh

https://hadroncollider.bandcamp.com/ 

https://nosh.bandcamp.com/

Eric Hisaw  

Eric is a musician who I went to High School with. We played in different bands so I never really knew him in high school. Over the years our lives have crossed paths several times with each of us helping each other in our respective towns that we currently live in. He has developed into an awesome songwriter and lead guitarist and I hope will go check out Eric's music at www.erichisaw.com

A young Eric from the time I went to school with him.

 

 

 

When did you begin playing music? I started playing music in sixth grade at University Hills when they offered guitar as part of the music program. My desire to play had been sparked by seeing the movie "The Buddy Holly Story" which is factually very weak but was spiritually very touching to me. 

What instruments do you play? Guitar is the only instrument I really play. I can come up with a part on lap steel or mandolin to record but have never played those live. I can play some bass, (I did a brief tour with my East LA buddies Los Fabulocos playing cumbias, rancheras, Chuck Berry rockers and Fats Domino triplet ballads) but I'm no master 

Do you come from a family of musicians or are you the first? My parents are great music fans but not players. My paternal grandfather's people in Oklahoma were country fiddlers and guitar pickets which had an influence. Here is a picture of my grandfather and an unknown relative. MY grandfather is the one holding the guitar.

Are you self taught or are you professionally trained? I've taken some lessons but the majority of my instrumental exploration has been on my own. I moved to Austin when I was 18 and loved going to clubs to see bands in the midst of my drinking and hell raising I did a lot of guitar player watching as well 

Do you have a practice routine? I play a series of boring technical exercises with a metronome every morning when I first get up. I try to spend time rehearsing myself on the songs I perform with my band as often as possible as well as dig in to something new. My schedule doesn't always allow for all of that but I do at least hit my technique stuff for 45 minutes to an hour every single day 

What was the first album you purchased?  I believe the first record I bought (from my good friend Rick Eakens' Budget Records and Tapes on Idaho Dr) was a Kerrville Folk Festival compilation called Texas Folk and Outlaw Music.

Does it still influence you and how?The record definitely had a big impact on me as the narrative lyric style prevalent among the Texas songwriters has always played heavily in my own music. I ended up meeting, opening for and playing with a number of people featured on that record which made it some what prophetic I suppose 

What is your most recent musical purchase? Most recent new album I've bought was Chuck Prophet's latest "Bad Year For Rock'n'Roll". Chuck's guitar work with Green On Red had a big influence on me as a teenager and he continues to make very interesting and creative albums. I've bought a ton of old records lately by the Flamin' Groovies, Chris Spedding and the Sir Douglas Quintet, one of the most interesting of which is the 1970 Atlantic Records solo album by Sam 'the Sham' Samudio called Hard and Heavy. Good blues/soul/rock with an undercurrent of brown power 

What is the most bizarre thing someone shared with you at a gig? A guy once asked me if his dad who was a saxophonist could sit in with the band. He told me a little about him and I said yeah, bring him up. He went to the car to get him and came back with an urn he sat on my amp for the rest of the set. 

What is your favorite instrument to play? I am pretty much a one guitar man with an irrational semi superstitious attachment to my early 80's Japanese Fender Telecaster. I bought it at Hubbard's Music in Las Cruces in 1986 or 87 and other than a 3 or 4 year spell of playing a cherry red tele in the mid 2000's it's been my main guitar for everything 

Does it go on tour with you? My tele has toured quite a bit. I got worried about flying with it and it missed a Midwest tour I was on but for the most part it goes everywhere. It's been coast to coast, corner to corner and to the UK 

www.erichisaw.com

Guy Nix 

I wanted to start writing about independent musicians. So I did. The musicians I blog about are independent and are people I know personally either from growing up with them, meeting them in person in a professional capacity or I just have crossed paths and been a part of their musical journey. All of them have had an influence on me in one way or another. 

The first musician I will be writing about will be Guy Nix a Singer/Songwriter from Nashville. He is currently touring the West and will be in Rio Rancho Sunday June 4th at the BlueGrasshopper from 5-8 pm.

When did you begin playing music? 
I still don't consider myself a musician, especially where I live, but I began making noise on guitar when I was about nine years old. 

What instrument(s) do you play? 
Only play at guitar. I've dabbled on a few others, but can't come close to making music on anything but a guitar... 

Do you come from a family of musicians? 
Yes, I'm third generation singer songwriter. Both my Papaw, HF Nix and my Dad, Kingman Nix were involved with music. My Papaw could play anything with strings on it, and my dad sang and played guitar. Dad recorded some songs here in Nashville back in the early seventies, and played many years in a band around southern New Mexico. 

Are you self taught or do you have training or a mixture of the two? 
I had a few lessons as a kid, but mostly self taught, and always watching the people around me to try to improve. 

How often do you practice? 
Obviously not as often as I should on guitar, but I'm always writing lyrics in my head. I'm pretty fortunate that I play about as many gigs as I want to out here in Nashville, and just staying busy helps keep me "practicing" while getting paid. 

What was the first album you purchased? 
One that stands out is Keith Whitley's. 
Does it still influence you? Yeah, along with my family and several other favorites.. How? Well, I moved to Nashville seven years ago, so I'm quite sure it's never let me go. 

What was the last album you purchased? Sturgil Simpson. 

What is the most bizarre thing that has been shared with you at a gig? 
Let's keep this G rated. 

Do you have a favorite instrument? Yeah, I have a Takamine Santa Fe guitar, with the turquoise inlay's that I bought about seventeen years ago. 
Does it go on tour? 
Yes, it's my gigging guitar. And it's getting ready to head west for a run as I type this. 

Guy NIx music