Tuesday, November 4, 2008

PLUNK, STRUM, PICK STRING INSTRUMENTS IN MY LIFE

How it all began

Tenor Banjo - Plastic strings and short neck. 4 strings with a drum body. No idea of how to play. Buy a book of guitar chords, but it didn’t have the sound I was looking for. Threw it away.
Baritone Ukulele - Nylon strings and longer neck and body. Like a small guitar (today called a travel guitar). Learned how to play on this thing. But it was a junior guitar. I needed a “real” guitar. Gave it away.
Stella Tenor Guitar - 4 strings. Sunburst finish. A Harmony guitar, but like a junior guitar. Only four strings. Didn’t have the bass notes.
Red Archtop - Steel strings and terrible action. Got this guitar from a friend of my fathers. A real guitar. Learned every song on this guitar, but then need to go electric. Gave it away.
Linda Solid Body Electric - Purchased at a pawn shop with a little 10 watt amp. Red sunburst with bad action. Two pickups and no whammy bar. Not very loud, but it was electric so I could play in a band. Played 6-string bass. Gave it away.
Goya - A Swedish nylon string classical guitar purchased with coins. Went to a music shop every weekend and played with their instruments. Could not afford the expensive Rickenbacker and Gibson, so I settled for the $300.00 classical guitar. Great for folk music. Sold it to beat a tax rap.
Goya 12-string - First 12-string. Big sound blond guitar. Put a pickup on the sound hole and made it electric. Gave it away.
Vox - English guitar. Bill Wyman teardrop bass. Wrapped strings. thin neck. Corduroy snapped to the back of a red sunburst body with silver pick plate.
Fender bassman amp - A little detour from the guitar but it made a big impression on the sound. 4- 10” speakers. Tweed cover with bright, bass, and three jacks. Tube and solid wood to weigh a ton. Made the 6-sting Linda electric sound like a bass. Plugged our microphones and guitar into it. Purchased by my dad from an old Carolina friend Paul T. , a small town grocer and music promoter. Borrowed by a person who played congas at a party. He never returned it. Even went to his apartment looking to dump on him. Scared his roommate to death.
Hagstrom 12-string - Swedish Acoustic. Had to have another 12-string. Sunburst but not a big sound. Gave it away.
Ovation - Mid 70's U.S.A. Balladeer. Brown sunburst and that incredible projection sound from the arched plastic back. Thin neck and steel strings. Hard shell case to take care of this baby. Constant companion for years. Sold to a manager at work who trashed it.
Framis Electric - German early 60's. Blond thin hollow body with triple pickups, a whammy bar, and a ton of switches, but bad electronics. A mute strip that could be folded on and off and a volume knob with a hook that could be controlled by the pinkie finger. Refinished it in the basement. Trashed it one night - The Who style.
Fender bandmaster - Purchased from Steve ( I think? ) with dual speaker cabinets. Tube amp that didn’t have the power I really wanted, but it replaced the bassman. Used a echo machine and a wah-wah with it, but it never gave the great sound I was looking for. Gave it to the Salvation Army.
Farfisa Organ - Italian keyboard from Ann Lee, Steve’s girl friend from the 70’s. She was moving to Colorado with a NEW boyfriend and need the cash. Black keys for the bass. Learned keyboard from a organ in the living room, but this one was a cool organ with a few switches. Traded it to Wild Bill for a ’67 Fender strat.

Fender Stratocaster - Red with smooth sound. Again, with bad electronics. Thought about replacing the pickups until a guitar dealer offered me a bunch of money to keep it the way it was. Sold it to get out of debt, but for a really good price. Neat guitar.
Rickenbacker 12-string - Blond electric from the Beatles and Byrds fame made in the U.S.A. Wonderful sound, but only for that sound. Took 6 strings off, but never could get the big sound I was looking for. Traded it to Pete for some other solid body electric which I gave away.
Rickenbacker bass - Stereo bass with the longest neck and flat wound strings. Hard to play because it was so big. But a great big sound. Sold it to get out of debt.
Yamaha - PSR-16. Mid 80's sound. Drum sounds and various selections of pre-set sounds. Smooth reaction. No midi, but sounds great through an amp.
Yamaha - DD-7 & DD-55. Real drum beat and 100's various songs to play along with. Good snare sound and adjustable tom-toms.
Casio - Digital guitar. Bought at Best Products in the mid 80’s. Midi output and loose plastic strings. Little drum pads and rhythm patterns built in. Ton of settings, but didn’t realize what it could really do until plugged into an amp. Great organ sound. Hard to play but amazing results.
Washburn - 6-string acoustic electric. Single cutaway to reach the high strings. Thin body and neck. Wonderful feel. Smooth as silk. My mainstay.
Roland amplifier - Small 10” speaker with a ton of effects. Great echo. Transistor.
Fender sidekick bass - Little bass amp with a big full sound.
Washburn 12-string - acoustic electric with a jumbo body. Big sound and easy to play. Got to have a 12-string

Fender Squire guitar - Blue strat with the same feel of the more expensive model and modern pickups and electronics. Fun guitar to play.

Fender Squire bass guitar - White. Simple play. Nylon wrapped black strings. Smooth and fun to play.
Guitar Works travel guitar and soft case. Bought it with thoughts of walking in marathons and playing to pass the time. Maybe play it while walking around the school. Regular neck on a small body, like the first uke.

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