Author Topic: Show us your axe ?  (Read 5465 times)

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Offline JudiBlueEyes

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Re: Show us your axe ?
« Reply #120 on: August 28, 2019, 05:44:13 pm »
Cool!  I love the finish.
Wind blew in, cloud was dispersed
Rainbows appearing, the pressures were burst
Breezes a-singing, now feeling good
The moment had passed like I knew that it should


Re: Show us your axe ?
« Reply #121 on: August 28, 2019, 09:27:12 pm »
Forgot to mention i finally cracked for this beast:

Costly but omagad, it's sooooooooo confortable to play, much more than my 7 strings which i'm going to sell, that will cover most of the price so all's not lost  :D

That is a beautiful instrument. 

Offline EllenJ2003

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Re: Show us your axe ?
« Reply #122 on: August 29, 2019, 05:25:51 am »
Forgot to mention i finally cracked for this beast:

Costly but omagad, it's sooooooooo confortable to play, much more than my 7 strings which i'm going to sell, that will cover most of the price so all's not lost  :D

Ouch!!!   That must have cost a bundle, but it looks soooooo cool!, and Strandberg makes great guitars.  I've never played fanned fret guitars in my 40 years of guitar playing (I started playing when I was 15, back in 1979 [several months after I told my parents that they had a daughter, instead of a son - the revelation did NOT go well for me]), is the playing feel of your Strandberg noticeably different from a non-fanned fret guitar?

Also, can I ask you question?  Since it sounds like you are playing in a band at the present time, if you transitioned or are transitioning, did you have problems with your bandmates accepting it?  I wasn't playing in bands, when I transitioned (1998 till 2003 [when I had SRS]), but when my old bandmates found out about it, they did NOT react very well to the news.  You don't have to answer if you're not comfortable doing so.  I'm just curious.  Nowadays, when I play in bands, I do not tell people about that aspect of my past (being a post-op MTF).

Well, I'd better get going, the 6 am commute to work awaits me.

HRT Since 1999
Legal Name Change and Full Time in Dec. 2000
Orchiectomy in July 2001
SRS (Yaay!! :)) Nov. 25, 2003 by Suporn

Offline JanePlain

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Re: Show us your axe ?
« Reply #123 on: December 11, 2019, 02:41:16 pm »
Looove "52 Girls".  It's my favorite B52s song.  Whenever I grab a Fender Jaguar to play, I inevitably play the guitar lines from "52 Girls:".  Ricky Wilson (R.I.P), may have been largely clueless when it came to all things guitar (I've read accounts, where people said that he didn't even know how to tune a guitar - he'd just keep on tuning the strings until it was workable for whatever songs he was going to play), but the guitar parts on "52 Girls" sound so cool in a trippy sort of surf guitar way.

Hi Ellen.  Ricky gets a bad rap.  He was just unconventional Ricky intentionally tuned his guitars differently, As I understand it used bass strings on some parts and played at times with only 5 or 4 strings.  I found this from his first guitar tech and thought you might appreciate it.  *I think different tunings are a good thing.  One of my other favorite bands is Weezer and I think they all tune 1/2 step down so the strings aren't so tight.  Jimi Hendrix did that as well (I think)  Anyway here is the quote from Ricky's guitar tuner.  I think the 1/2 step down tuning also allows you to really hammer the strings.  Looking at old Weezer Videos they look like they are ripping the strings off.  Matt Sharp's bass looks like the paint was sandblasted off the top of his very odd bass (Made up from a variety of pieces of other bass guitars)  Somewhere is a video of Matt doing something after he left Weezer where a fan recreated his guitar in exacting detail and he seemed gobsmacked that anyone cared to recreate it but I always thought he had a monster sound with that and his Orange Amps.

"This is a recent fb post from Ricky Wilson's first guitar tech Keith Bennett.

"What a special honor it was to have been Ricky’s first guitar tech. What he was doing was unique in concept, technique and execution and he had great patience with me as I had to learn, pretty much over night, the precise details of my duty in this regard.

It was no secret that I had signed on to the first US tour to preserve mine and Cindy’s on going courtship but my relationship with his sister in no way softened what Ricky required in order to perform on stage night after night in city after city for months on end. Nor did I want it to.

Looking back, believe my rookie status was actually a positive in Ricky’s mind. My ability to handle the learning curve presented to me was unencumbered by any past guitar tech experience; the unconventional ways of Ricky’s approach to the guitar did not run counter to some engrained standard methodology I might have harbored.

Ricky’s familiarity with me was perhaps a comforting factor in having a nomadic working relationship, given his profound reticence. I had experienced first hand the attitudes of some guitarists who were somehow offended by Ricky’s idiosyncratic approach to the instrument, as if an EADGBE tuning had been carved on stone tablets and six strings were a sacrament.

Of course the deep root of their being so tightly wound up about one man’s creative technique was bitterness over being technically proficient, excellent even, yet completely overlooked and left behind; one person’s excellence indistinguishable from that of the next.

I don’t know whether Ricky was ever bothered by such individuals.Their subset became smaller as the B-52’s became bigger. Who knows. Ricky and I didn’t talk much, his shyness often reflected in my own awkward social malfunctions and those misfires reflecting back off of his and so forth until a nervous feedback loop was formed. But there was no animosity, just chronic hesitation.

True to form, Ricky rarely said two words to me in the tuning room before the show, where he would come in each night to check the tunings of the freshly restrung and tuned guitars. I changed the strings, stretched the new ones and tuned and retuned six guitars every single night, one of them, a double neck. Although Ricky did not invent alternative tunings for the guitar, he certainly took it to an extreme.

In the tiny tuning room before the show, Ricky would sit in complete silence and check the tunings using a small Korg meter which the band had used from day one, all beat up and held together by gaffer’s tape and luck. This after I had already stretched the new strings and tuned them using the fancy new Conn strobe tuner, a technological marvel of its day. Fast, easy and spot on accurate, it was my best friend in my new world of daily string changing and nightly travel by rental truck.

Those moments alone in the tuning room, along with the chemical bond that he shared with Cindy, both in terms of family and on stage, inform my perception of Ricky and define those early years on the road working as his tech. I am confident that those shared moments of silence in the tuning room, the eye of each evening’s hurricane, were a lot more relaxing to Ricky than they were to me as he began testing each string with meditative concentration.

He would sit and select a guitar, pluck a string and then stare straight ahead into the void as the vibration faded away into the silence of the room like a stone tossed into a sonic pond. Sometimes he would listen long after it seemed the sound had decayed. As he confirmed the validity of each string, he would occasionally raise an eyebrow ever so slightly or give the most subtle of shrugs. Body language that I learned to pick up on and which I lived for in those moments.

Then he would focus on certain strings on certain guitars, and using the little Korg analog tuner, he would throw those strings, which I had tuned to digital perfection, off of A440 ever so slightly. In other words, I had to get it perfect so he could then deviate from it to a place that only he could find.

Then, once he had finished he would stand and with a shrug and a slight shadow of a smile, he would leave and head back to the dressing rooms as I began to transport the six or seven guitars to the stage area where I had earlier set up the station fat which I would alter the guitar tunings and string variations during the show, as per the set list dictate.

Ricky used only five strings on his guitars, sometimes only four, and always the heaviest gauge possible. During the show he would punish the strings with an extra heavy pick, staring intensely at some point on the stage floor or a million miles beyond, thrashing away as a constant rivulet of sweat dripped from the end of his nose like a waterfall.

He hit hard, holding nothing back, creating his unique chording with his thumb over the top of the fret board and hitting down while pulling up on the higher strings, usually tuned to exact unison. Pushing down and pulling up and pulling out dynamics like lava from a volcano. He gave the illusion of two guitarists in this way and combined with Keith Strickland’s painfully exact drumming, he produced an infectious rhythm. His was no wimpy sound and in fact his tone and rhythmic chops rivaled any guitarist, anywhere, in any type band - punk, metal or in between.

The fact that his contribution to the artistry of the instrument goes unsung in the compendiums and yearly collections of the “100 greatest guitarists” only serves to illuminate the limited scope and specious credibility of the so called experts responsible for these lists. But Ricky would be the first to tell you, or indicate in some manner anyway, that playing the guitar, (regardless of his genius in so doing,) was not all that he was about or even his main thing. He was engaged in so much more. Always reading, researching, traveling or seeking some new avenue of life experience.

But his relation to the guitar and of course to Cindy, now my wife of many years and the mother of my children, are the points of view by which I hold Ricky in my mind. And in those very kids, through whose wry smiles and natural flowing talent he indeed shines on. A gentle, bemused soul, Ricky brought his own customized standard to whatever he did.

Very private, Ricky was always somewhat enigmatic to me. But the one thing that was never obscured, always as crisp and bright as an October morning, was his love for his sister and the central role he played in her life. He will always be her wise, loyal and protective older brother in the vast timeless universe that is in her heart. And I will always be his guitar tech, striving for a glimpse of that slightly raised eyebrow."
"This world is but canvas to our imaginations.
Henry David Thoreau - (1817-1862)