Copying the text from the old forum: Jozsef's Road Case
August 15, 2021
“What’s it going to be then, eh?”
I used to have a colleague who had his own semi-professional band in which he sang and played guitar. Over a few months, we talked more and more often about music and I somehow got inspired to try to play the guitar. I had no musical background, but I’ve always liked to listen to music and do some research on the things I liked.
So I thought, why not give it a chance and see what happens? That was in 2019, and after a few weeks of deliberation, research and finding Justin’s channel on YouTube by chance, I made the big leap and now I’m here starting this thread.
So what made me think it would be a reasonable idea to pick up any instrument at the age of almost 30 without any previous attempt? Apart from my colleague mentioned in the opening post and the fact that by that time I earned enough money so that the potential failure of this project would not automatically lead to a significant financial loss, the easiest answer would be “I don’t know”.
Well, it probably isn’t as simple as that.
My earliest music-related memory is when my dad used to listen to Deep Purple in Rock and I tried to imitate Ian Gillan’s shrieks in Bloodsucker. I think I nailed it pretty much every time. I was around 3 or 4 years-old at the time and the high pitches were much easier on my vocal chords back then.
I had some toy instruments as well (I still have them stored away somewhere) - two plastic melodicas (though I didn’t know their name at that time) and a battery powered toy piano which I can’t remember ever playing but its missing parts show that it encountered my still barely self-conscious self in the early 1990s (if it had not had a previous owner). Probably because the melodicas were quite loud, I never became too fond of them. I could never play any melody or even a pleasant-sounding group of notes on them anyway. I think it’s safe to say that I’ve never shown any inclination towards playing music - I did not repeat any melodies, did not recognize the same notes in different songs, etc. I may have liked singing but I can’t remember clearly. I just wasn’t interested in making music, but I liked what my parents listened to. Actually, I still don’t know about anyone in my family who has had a more than cursory interest in music.
August 21, 2021
Let’s see my current gear (thanks for the interest)
1. Fender CD-60 Dread V3 DS
My first guitar, bought on 28 August, 2019 and photographed a few days later.
It has served me ever since. It cost about 170 USD (current exchange rate) - I didn’t want to buy anything too expensive as a first instrument. It may not be a top acoustic model, but I like it anyway, I got accustomed to it quite quickly.
In the autumn, I’m planning to have the saddle replaced as it seems the unwound strings are starting to make a groove in it. I’d also like to replace the original bridge pins with fully black ones, just for the looks.
2. Epiphone Les Paul Standard Plustop Pro
My first, and for the foreseeable future only, electric guitar. Bought on 13 December, 2019 and photographed the next day.
It cost about 570 USD (current exchange rate). For some reason, it was a bit cheaper than other Epiphone Les Paul models, but I can’t complain about this one either. I’ve removed the stickers since then.
3. Fender Mustang I (V.2) combo amp
I purchased it by the time I had the electric guitar. I was looking for a practice amp that is not too big and bulky for home use (it weight about 7 kg but doesn’t feel as heavy). It has quite a few combinations of settings to choose from, but I use it set to “British 60s” about 95% of the time as it has a cleaner sound than the other options. I prefer to add other effects, distortion or echo on a cleaner tone rather than on a “pre-distorted one”, and I prefer practicing for technique with a cleaner sound.
4. Vox V847 wah-wah pedal
Purchased this summer but I had been toying with the idea of a wah wah pedal before that. I’m not into adding gazillions of effects to the guitar and pedal boards never turned me on, so this one feels just about enough. The tone is pleasant, but I still have to work on my hand-foot synchronization. I still haven’t decided if it’s more comfortable to use it with my right or left foot (I’m right handed).
5. Yamaha FG820-12 twelve-string acoustic guitar
The latest addition to my arsenal, bought exactly a week ago for about 500 USD (current exchange rate). It’s fully acoustic, no electronics in it whatsoever
I’m still only getting the hang of it but it feels pretty comfortable to play. As suggested in my other thread on 12-string playing, I tuned it down to Eb which gives it a richer sound compared to my six-string. I think I’ll start this years’ guitar check up season with this one as the nut action still seems to be a tad too high for barre chords or fingering notes at the 1st fret. My technique is also to be developed, especially string muting and picking individual courses of strings (not even mentioning getting a good sound with an upstroke).
König & Meyer 101 music stand
This was a bit of a “vanity project” for me, it certainly gives off an air of professionalism ;D Seriously, it’s a great addition to anyone’s gear. The stand is light but sturdy, collapsible (comes with a cool bag for transportation) or can be extended depending on your preference. I use it set to a height comfortable with sitting down (I usually play sitting anyway). It’s similar to a guitar stand in the way that you can leave your notes, sheet music, etc. on it and it gives a bit more inspiration to carry on practicing.
Proel FC-820 double guitar stands
I don’t have separate pics of these as they are visible on the other ones. They have a kind of foam padding on the arms which do not damage the finish of the body. They are easy to use and keep the guitars nice and firm. The height of the neck rest can be adjusted. The first one holds my six-string and electric, and I bought a new one for the twelve string. The design seems to have changed a tiny bit as the legs of the new stand are slightly less wide apart.
I don’t know if it’s a suitable solution to keep two acoustic guitars on it; at least, the headstocks of my acoustics seem to be too big to let the necks rest on the neckpieces.
Hercules GSP38WB Plus guitar hanger
Having just praised my floor stands, I’m thinking about hanging my guitars on the wall; not only for the visuals, but also because the room has got a wee bit crowded with the newcomer twelve-string, the pedal and the music stand. I also wouldn’t have to move the guitars to the other room when I do the vacuum cleaning. I could still keep one of the floor stands for a guitar I’d happen to use more frequently. Anyway, it’s still only a plan.
I used to have Ernie Ball straps (solid black and gold & black paisley) on my six-string, but a few months ago I just unstrapped it. I play it sitting down mostly anyway, and without a strap I can hold it closer to me, or in a different angle. I used to watch Jorma Kaukonen’s quarantine concerts and none of his guitars were strapped (also to facilitate swapping guitars, I guess), so I thought I would give it a shot and it worked.
I’ve got a crimson paisley Ernie Ball strap on the electric. I chose the colour to match that of the guitar. It’s good to have it on as the Les Paul type guitars are heavier than usual. Well, it’s my first electric and doesn’t feel heavy at all to me, but when I pick up a Fender or a hollowbody at a guitar store just like I pick up mine, the difference in the weight becomes quite noticeable.
I have a leather strap as well which I intended for my electric, but I just couldn’t fit the strap button in the hole in the strap. Maybe I’ll give it another go sometime later.