2,236 reputation
613
bio website thecynicalmusician.com
location London, United Kingdom
age 36
visits member for 3 years, 2 months
seen Jun 24 '11 at 3:02

I have been playing guitar for 19 years now. I'm an old-school rocker/metalhead, but I try to keep my mind open and am more than happy to incorporate other musical influences, be they blues, country, progressive, folk or even electronic.

My current project is Viridian - a melodic hard-rock band where I am the guitarist, main songwriter and manager, for my sins. The band is in something of a state of suspension at the moment - following our move to London from Warsaw, Poland - as we are presently looking for musicians to complete the lineup.

On the side, I write music business commentary @ TheCyncialMusician.com - something which has surprisingly gained me more notoriety than my music. My point of view stems from my personal experience in music and the biz, plus my education as an economist. More often than not, I find myself pointing out holes in conventional MusBiz blogosphere wisdom, but I hope it helps provide other musicians a different perspective in these troubled times.

In the past, I have taught guitar and might do so again.

My gear, just for the heck of it:

Guitars - Gibson SG standard, Ibanez RG2550E Prestige

Amplification - 2 Marshall JCM900 half-stacks (a 4100 Dual Reverb and a 2100 SL-X)

Effects - Boss GT-10


May
16
answered Basics of stage presence for guitarists
May
16
comment How can I make my palm mutes sound more metal?
I'd say that right-hand positioning is 99% of the sound - get it right and you'll be able to play good-sounding mutes on any setup. Two things I'd like to add are: you'll find that downstrokes give a much "chunkier" mute than alternate picking, so you might consider playing the heavier parts with all downstrokes and that adding just a bit of thumb flesh to the pick attack (as in pinch harmonics, but not quite so marked) can do a lot for the aggressiveness of the sound.
May
16
comment Troubleshooting a broken electric guitar
Addendum: I've recently developed a similar problem in my Ibanez. I've traced it to the jack plug - it's a fully enclosed one, so I cannot determine the exact cause, but my guess is that it's due to the deformation of the contact tabs. Jiggling the plug around sometimes helps, sometimes not. I'll have to get it replaced.
May
16
comment What does the distance between a pickup and strings do for the sound?
The last question would probably involve examining the magnetic field generated by each - possibly interesting from a Physics standpoint, but I'm not sure whether very practical for us guitarists, especially since height adjustments will generally be determined through experiment. As to the popularity of single-pickup guitars, I've always thought it was more a question of simplicity (especially if the controls consist of a single volume pot), than technical considerations.
May
16
answered How to hear yourself better at the rehearsal studio?
May
15
answered Looking for logic in Behringer X V-AMP LX-1 default presets… need help
May
14
answered What does the distance between a pickup and strings do for the sound?
May
14
comment Troubleshooting a broken electric guitar
If none of DrMayhem's suggestions had any effect, one other thing you can try is to remove the controls from the circuit altogether and simply connect a pickup to the output jack (that's if you're handy with a soldering iron). However, in all it's best to have it checked out buy an experienced repairman.
May
10
answered How to layout left hand fingers correctly?
May
10
comment Do I have to tune my guitar everyday?
One thing I'd add to this is that many problems with guitars going out of tune can be brought down to how well the strings were put on (or not). In short: make sure they were wound up neatly, around 4-5 turns for the treble and 2-3 turns for the bass strings, with no spaces between windings. Stretch them out when tuning to make sure there's no room for movement in the windings or gears and ALWAYS tune up to pitch.
May
10
answered What's the best choice to get more gain out of a tube amplifier
May
7
comment What scale is this? ( A B C# D E F G A)
If we wanted to look at it in modal terms (given the starting note A), it is A mixolydian b6 - the fifth mode of D melodic minor, as Rein Henrichs pointed out.
May
7
comment Save money when buying a guitar / amp?
I agree wholeheartedly. When on a budget, check out used gear. One thing I'd like to add is that it's best to check it out personally before purchasing, whenever practical. This is less important with amps and electronic gear, but might save you a lot of heartache with guitars (especially if an otherwise fine instrument turns out simply "wrong" for you, for whatever reason). If you don't have a lot of experience with testing guitars, try to get a friend who does to come along.
May
6
comment How to learn many musical instruments?
Excellent answer, to which I'll only add one penny's worth: when working on playing a number of instruments, it's easier to get started on a new instrument if it is already similar to one you are proficient with. If you already play guitar, it's fairly easy to pick up on the bass; should you start playing the saxophone, you'll find it easier to pick up the clarinet, etc.
May
6
comment When is it proper (if ever) to extend time signatures (8/4 vs 4/4)?
Generally, time signatures should make music easy to read - that is: provide accurate information as to what the pulse (or accentuation) of the music is, while at the same time keeping the bars short enough to facilitate easy reading. In the situation described, a two-bar phrase is best written as a two-bar phrase; an 8/4 time signature is theoretically possible, but would actually make the music more difficult to read (especially if shorter note values were used).
May
6
awarded  Autobiographer
May
6
awarded  Supporter
May
5
answered Playing Tricky Harmonics
May
5
comment Links and tips for Learning and using scales
Not for a living, no - although I am considering it. However, I do have this little music biz blog that has become a bit noteworthy in some circles. Check my profile for details - I don't want to spam this thread.
May
5
answered Does using a capo put you out of tune?