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(@s1120)
Prominent Member
Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 849
 

a few years ago I got involved with playing lap steel and then picked up a pedal steel guitar. the new tunings were exciting and confounding, so I began looking on line for slide guitar forums to discuss and learn these new instruments. at Steel Guitar Forum
I met loads of amazing folks. some real players of the vintage music I was discovering. that music is old cowboy, not the modern country out now. I began discovering artists from the 50's playing really great music. I found a series of DVDs released by the Bear Family (Germany) that featured old country western TV stage shows. I saw clips of Johnny Cash just starting out. very cool. on one show there was a female pedal steel player; Marian Hall. really good and quite unusual, as men typically ruled this instrument.
one day as I was reading a guitar magazine there was an article about this woman player. what a history. I was impressed and posted a review of the article and the DVD on the steel guitar forum.
a few months later I received an email from Marian Hall. she was in her eighties, long retired, but she had read my post and was flattered by my admiration. we wrote back and forth for a few months. she shared some of her stories and playing techniques with me. then the emails stopped.
a few weeks later I got an email from Marian's daughter telling me that Marian passed away . she wrote that Marian enjoyed the correspondence with me and others. I learned that Marian had just learned the computer a month before I wrote about her and really liked getting in touch with her old playmates and her new fans.
here daughter was really nice. she wanted her kids to know about their gramma. I sent her the magazine with the article and a copy of the DVD.
that was the my only close and personal contact with a guitar hero.

Thats a great story, thanks for posting it!!!!!! I think the word "hero" gets thrown around quite a bit...and I would not go that far, but there are defently a few guys I would not mind asking a few things to. How they started, how they overcame the problem ares, what they had/used as insperation.... Joe Bonamassa would be one of them. I realy like his writing style, and his playing is top knoch!!! Seems like he is probably a pretty good guy in person also. Also I could think of many things to ask Eric Clapton!!

Paul B


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(@rparker)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 5492
 

(For anyone...) What would you ask a big name star?

I imagine my biggest question to ask some of the big ones (Clapton, John, Joel, Jagger, Petty, et al) would be, "Was it worth it?"

Anyone huge, really. Joe Dimaggio - famous NY Yankee's CF'er and a real American Icon - had a reputation for fighting for his privacy. I heard a story one time where he walks into a restaraunt after retirement and is instantly recognized. Instead of being blasted with autograph seekers and the lot, he was politely applauded and everyone sat back down and left him and his group to their evening out in peace.

Stories like that are few. You normally here things like someone can't go anywhere without getting spotted and approached. Part of the price, I guess. But, was it worth it?

Roy
"I wonder if a composer ever intentionally composed a piece that was physically impossible to play and stuck it away to be found years later after his death, knowing it would forever drive perfectionist musicians crazy." - George Carlin


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(@trguitar)
Famed Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 3711
Topic starter  

You know Roy, your post made me think of an interview I saw with Paul Stanley of KISS. He basically said that famous people who complain about their privacy should stop whining. He was like, "You wanted to be famous and you got what you wanted so shut up!" Gene Simmons was on The Bob and Tom radio show and they asked him about having cameras following him and in his home. He said "Why should I complain? I'm being paid to live my life the same as I would otherwise." I suppose some famous people like being famous.

"Work hard, rock hard, eat hard, sleep hard,
grow big, wear glasses if you need 'em."
-- The Webb Wilder Credo --


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(@notes_norton)
Noble Member
Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 1497
 

Fortunately I've had the pleasure of being the opening act for many major stars when they were in their prime, and I've met a few others socially, but as peers, not as fan to hero.

Having a hero is all in attitude. They are just other musicians who got a better gig.

I recall one night I was talking with Tom Scott (famous sax player) while we were playing in a Hyatt Hotel that he was staying in. He said (I'm paraphrasing since I can't remember the exact words) "I know there is a sax player playing in a Holiday Inn somewhere like Valparaiso Indiana that could put me in his back pocket. But I had the good fortune of being in the right place at the right time, knew the right people, showed up on time, showed up straight, and got the job done."

I truly believe that if you consider your former heroes as equals who just have a better gig, you will raise your own self-esteem and that will actually give you the confidence to play better.

If you are a beginner, it also helps to think of them as peers who just got started before you, are farther up on the learning curve, and have skills that you can learn.

Remember, no matter how good or bad you play, somebody out there can play better, and somebody else can't play as well as you can.

Insights and incites by Notes ♫

Bob "Notes" Norton

Owner, Norton Music http://www.nortonmusic.com Add-on Styles for Band-in-a-Box and Microsoft SongSmith

The Sophisticats http://www.s-cats.com >^. .^< >^. .^<


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(@s1120)
Prominent Member
Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 849
 

Very true... As I posted, I think the word "hero" gets thrown around pretty freely. I agree with the idea thet they had the good brake, knew the people, or just all around busted there ass!!! As a beginner myself though.... I would love to be able to play like the guys who's playing I am inspired by..... but man.... think there is also a natral talent that I might be missing a little bit of, and at 45 now.... not sure there are enough days left.

Paul B


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(@trguitar)
Famed Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 3711
Topic starter  

Maybe inspiration would be a better term than hero. All I know is I got a chance to say thank you to one of them and I got back advice and encouragement in return. It doesn't get any better. 8)

"Work hard, rock hard, eat hard, sleep hard,
grow big, wear glasses if you need 'em."
-- The Webb Wilder Credo --


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(@notes_norton)
Noble Member
Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 1497
 

I've got to agree with the "inspiration" rather than "hero" description.

When I was young, we played before the Dave Brubeck Quartet for the Jerry Lewis Telethon and Paul Desmond (one of the top-rated sax players) was very kind and encouraging to me.

There are a number of different skills that go into being a musician. Technical ability, talent, tone, improvisation, transposition, and literally dozens more. Nobody is best at all of them, although some are truly awesome at all.

I was playing in a hired horn section back in the 70s. The other tenor sax player was a whiz. He could sightread technical passages that I couldn't quite get no matter how much I practiced them. But when we walked out in the audience during breaks, most people who said anything complemented me on my sax playing and not the other guy.

I told him I felt really bad about that and that I looked up to him as a better player. Then he told me that he wished he had my ability to put expression into the solos, especially on slow songs. That's when I quit comparing myself to others.

I still notice what others do that I cannot do, and if it is something that I like, I'll work to learn it. But on the other hand, there is probably something that I can do that they might also want to learn. That makes us peers.

In fact, when I was giving private lessons to beginner-intermediate sax students, I often learned things from my students.

I know a lot of people on this forum consider themselves beginners. I suggest that you don't think of yourself that way, instead, think of yourself as someone who is climbing the learning curve and accumulating more knowledge about your instrument and music itself. And no matter how long you live, you will never get to the top of that learning curve. There will always be something else to learn (and that's one of the things I like about music).

I guess I'm just rambling here. To all my peers on this learning curve, no matter where you are on the curve, keep doing it, keep working at it, and most importantly, keep having fun at it.

Notes

Bob "Notes" Norton

Owner, Norton Music http://www.nortonmusic.com Add-on Styles for Band-in-a-Box and Microsoft SongSmith

The Sophisticats http://www.s-cats.com >^. .^< >^. .^<


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(@rparker)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 5492
 

........And no matter how long you live, you will never get to the top of that learning curve. There will always be something else to learn.......
+1. That, to me, is part of the reason this is so much fun for me.

Roy
"I wonder if a composer ever intentionally composed a piece that was physically impossible to play and stuck it away to be found years later after his death, knowing it would forever drive perfectionist musicians crazy." - George Carlin


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