- The other side I have noticed to using d'Addario EXPs is that the silkiness of the string actually reduces the scrape sounds as you run down strings heading for a new chord, where you aren't specifically lifting your fingers off. You can't always avoid it, and it's not always bad, but reducing it is A Good Thing(tm).
- My classical guitar teaching isn't terrible. I have two girls that can now sight read treble and open basses to an acceptable level. I teach out of the old Aaron Shearer red book, that I learnt from, which is fantastic if not a little dry. I supplement with other stuff from the internet.
- Fingerstyle of the Moon is going well, I have played it at a few gigs and I am still excited playing it at home to myself. It's fairly consistent; usually comes in around 23-24 minutes of play time, I can play it fairly reliably without too many critical errors. It would be nice to have somewhere to play it weekly, where I can really hone it and make it "amazing"...perhaps I will play it on a big stage when Dark Side of the Moon turns 50 :-)
- One of the ukuleles in the house had a broken string, I replaced it with a set of uke strings I had purchased on the last string order. It was a slightly fancy set and I was surprised to find it had a wound 3rd string! (This is my tenor uke). I was so fascinated with the new sound that I have been playing it a bit more recently. I fully cheat; I just play my guitar songs on the top 4 strings, so the key is transposed 5 semitones. Like wearing a capo on the guitar at the fifth. I had previously found that my brain doesn't do well trying to map out fingering for 4 string fretting from fingering 6 string fretting, like the "extra" fingers want to do something but don't know what, but I am getting better at it. My repertoire isn't only "Here Comes the Sun" anymore.
- Both my daughters play stringed instruments; my son plays a reeded instrument but I still love him anyway. Recently the girls have really stepped up a notch in their playing ability, hats off to their teachers. But what I really appreciate is the eldest is in 3 bands at school, the youngest in 1 band at school and 1 outside of school. And it really really helps musicianship. I've played solo for so long that I don't play well with others. They pretty much have only played with others. And I see it when I occasionally play along with them. I am terrible at maintaining a tempo, and at fitting in - I only really have the ability to be the dominate "Everyone follow me", and then fingerstyle by it's nature is trying to be a one man band so there is also "Stop it, that's my part." I have really missed out not being in a band, I'm so glad the kids get to experience it. But I don't feel too bad, at one gig I was chatting with the audience "I've been playing solo too long, I don't play well with others" and one dude said "You've missed nothing - rather than waiting on other band members to show up, them not having practised, nobody agreeing on what to play, looking for new band members when they quit - you haven't been held back and have been able to hone your craft."
- Warm season is basically over. I don't have any upcoming gigs. I'm very busy with the family this year so it's not a bad thing, but gigs is why I bother*.
*not specifically true, playing the guitar is so ingrained it's like breathing, I can't _not_ play. But playing the guitar to people who dig what I'm doing is the highlight of guitaristry.