Monday 28 March 2011

What's happening March 2011

Okay, everything has been moved onto'm not sure I like the layout, but that can change later.  I particularly don't like the lack of links to old blog entries - Blogger only uses "labels" unlike wordpress that had categories and labels - and the archive blog widget on the side isn't all that useful.  Worse still, the search widget just plain doesn't work.  I'm pretty sure it is something to do with exporting from wordpress to blogger, but I don't know.  Fortunately the global search engines look like they've caught up with the site, but now all the pages are at the bottom of a search list...will be a while before they work their way up to replace the wordpress ones I reckon!

Meanwhile, the guitar playing front is quiet.  Since getting Super Mario Theme out, I've spent most of my time just playing the things I am currently enjoying; stuff like "Sunshine of your love", "Another one bites the dust", "Breathe/Time" and "Wish you were here."  Not focusing on my songs in-the-works, just having fun.  Sounds nice?  Well, I thought over the weekend I should revisit some of my old tunes.  Because one day I will be doing some gig work, and I need to keep them fresh.

I played about two bars into "A Whiter shade of Pale", which I love but haven't played for about 6 months.  I couldn't remember it!  Argh!  I had to go back to my tab (lucky I write these things down) and refresh myself.  Rusty, and even after playing it through twice it was no longer "natural".  A few more plays should fix that, I hope.

So that's another reason why I need to have a regular gig.  Just to make sure I play every piece I know on a regular basis!  That might sound a bit strange and dumb, but as with everything, you do the stuff you like, and ignore the stuff you don't for as long as possible.  Maybe it's not even stuff you don't like, it's just stuff that isn't as much fun as other stuff.

In other news, since I haven't been playing much recently, my left hand pinky is actually feeling almost normal again.  Perhaps it's just time, perhaps it is less stress from less playing; either way I'm pretty happy about it.  I've even been tentatively doing root A-chord pinky barre formations up the neck again.  It's my favourite way of doing a root 5th barre chord (uses just two fingers). I'd been using "standard" barre + 2-3-4 versions for the last several months, not as quick nor as adaptable.  I promise not to go too hard with it though, just use it here and there, okay? :)

The future.  I guess anyone who's been following me for a while has worked out that I like information to be shared; I like to teach anything useful I've learnt myself to others.  I love to see someone respond to one of my youtube videos having learnt from my tabs.  What I've been missing for a long while now, and what I've wanted to do for a while, is actual video lessons.  Work through songs phrase by phrase, showing the phrase tab and talking through it.

I've done three lessons in the past, all three still exist on the internet (somewhere), but they were a bit clumsy and not very well produced.  I've now got myself a nice HD webcam - I shot my Super Mario Theme on it - which will do quite nicely for lessons.

There are some challenges.  I've got some software I used in the past where I can do overlays and stuff, it's time consuming but do-able.  There are copyright issues, and I'm going to continue to look into it.  With copyrights comes costs, I'm hoping the advertising here will offset those (and any other) costs.  There is my ability to do lessons, but just like if you look back on my very early youtube videos (please don't) I'll get better the more I do.

The main challenge is time.  My work life and family life has grown to consume all available time.  I'm typing this during my lunch break.  I'm hoping in the next few weeks to try out my lesson skills at "Here Comes the Sun"; both a great starter for fingerpicking newbies and a pretty straightforward one for me to begin with.

Watch this space!

Tuesday 22 March 2011

Hello. Welcome.

Hello and welcome to  Why are we here?  Mostly, to organise all my Jawmunji stuff into one place!  Previously I had a blog, a website with tabs, an ftp site for mp3, videos on youtube and a site and sevenload and mojo24...well, it was silly.  So here we are, (soon to be) all in one place.  A very Googley place.

You may also notice that there are ads here.  Sold out you say?  Well, as some of my regular old blog readers would know I've talked about giving away stuff for free, and how I have had a donation page for about 4 years and doesn't work.  To all my friends who have donated in the past, thank you.  Now, you don't need to.  Advertising will take care of things.  Enough that I will be able to buy new strings...and if one day a guitar manufacturer decides to give me a guitar if I promote it, well, they will be the best guitar manufacturer in the world! :)

Business as usual.  I'll be blogging, and adding new songs to youtube...but everything else goes here.  Youtube is just too big and widely used and Googley to boycott; it brings in listeners.  But here is where you get the "value add", this is where I'll put the stuff that hopefully is useful to you, or brightens up your day a bit.

It will be a while before the move is complete; in the meantime, thanks for coming!