How To Do A Band Rhythm Check

Red Hot Chili Peppers Catch The Groove

   One of the things that will be an ongoing quest for your live band is your ability to play consistently in the groove. What is a groove? That’s when your band locks into a certain rhythm which defines the overall feel of the song. There’s a rock groove, funk groove, R&B groove, country groove, jazz groove and many other types of grooves. Playing in a groove can also be called “playing in the pocket.” It all comes down to a very simple concept and that is how all the parts being played by your band interlock rhythmically. Today I’m going to tell you about a very simple but very effective way for your live band to do a groove check, or rhythm check if you will. Continue reading “How To Do A Band Rhythm Check”

Getting Along Is More Important Than Musicianship

In Stereo Gets Along

   That’s right, getting along is more important than musicianship. This is band chemistry 101 for all you live musicians out there. I’ve played with some of the most incredible musicians I’ve ever heard and I’ve also seen them not able to function in a band for more than a year. The musicians I play with now are all excellent. Maybe not the best in the world, but excellent players. My two bands have been together for 18 years and 14 years respectively. Let me tell you why we’ve been together for so long.

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Stevie Ray Vaughan Interview And Guitar Lesson

Stevie Ray Vaughan

   Stevie Ray Vaughan is a legendary live musician. His live performance was simply amazing and he was very much at home on the stage. In this video clip Stevie talks about his playing and you get to sit back and enjoy him riffing away on his Fender Stratocaster. The camera stays on Stevie’s hands so you can really take a good look at what he’s doing while he’s playing. If you’re like me, then you wish every concert DVD had a camera just on the guitarists hands so you can see and learn what they’re doing. The only downside of the clip is I wish he was playing more but he does have some sage words of wisdom for guitarists. Enjoy!

Stevie Ray Vaughan Interview And Guitar Lesson

Fender Artist Series Stevie Ray Vaughan Stratocaster Electric Guitar 3-Tone Sunburst Fender Artist Series Stevie Ray Vaughan Stratocaster Electric Guitar 3-Tone SunburstThe Fender Stevie Ray Vaughan Stratocaster Electric Guitar is made for Texas Blues – Stevie style – with the same features as Stevie’s number one Strat. Unique features include a special “oval” neck, pao ferro fingerboard with 21 jumbo frets, three Texas Special single-coil pickups, gold-plated vintage hardware with Stevie’s unique left-handed synchronized tremolo, and special engraved pickguard. Pay tribute to a master with every note you play.


Have Fun At Band Practice

Bill Says - I LOVE practice!

   When I was just starting to play in rock bands and learning how to be a good live musician, I absolutely loved band practice. Hanging out with the guys and learning how to play together as a band was such a great rush. We’d play and talk about music and pig out on junk food. It was great! Over the years though, band practice has become more and more of a burden. It’s not very convenient and once you play live in front of a live audience, practice just doesn’t compare for getting a rush.

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Carl Palmer – Rock Drum Legend

Carl Palmer - Rock Drum Legend

   Carl Palmer of Emerson, Lake and Palmer fame as well as the supergoup Asia is one of my favorite rock drummers. He is a highly skilled live musician. He has a light touch and he’s amazingly accurate and fast. Carl was hailed as the rock-n-roll equivalent of jazz great Buddy Rich. I personally like to watch Carl Palmer using the classic jazz grip on the sticks. You don’t see it a lot with rock drummers. Another thing I really enjoy is Carls sense of showmanship. He knows how to put on a good show while playing the drumset. He is truly a great example of a good mix of musicianship and great stagecraft.

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Rock Band 2 Special Edition For Playstation 3 Review

Rock Band 2

 Rock Band 2 Special Edition was released for PlayStation 3 on Oct. 19th. Naturally, I picked it up that day and have been playing it since. Even though there aren’t any groundbreaking updates there are several very fun updates in Rock Band 2. Today I am going to turn Live Musician Central over to our new contributor, Skyler Rushton for a review of Rock Band 2. -Matt-

  The new Rock Band 2 Special Edition consists of a drum set, a microphone, and one rock band guitar. Continue reading “Rock Band 2 Special Edition For Playstation 3 Review”

Live Musician Central Tribute To Keith Moon

Keith Moon of The Who

   One of my very favorite drummers of all time is Keith Moon of The Who. He is the first drummer I remember ever focusing on with my complete attention while listening to a song. I remember being simply blown away by how varied his drumming was and how he could play so much yet still carry the rhythm of the song. The way Keith interacted with The Who’s music is simply perfect and The Who were a great band because of the way Keith played. Keith had a way of intertwining with the vocals, bass and guitar that would lift the other instruments up without overpowering them. It always amazed me how he could sound so scattered and out of time, yet be so perfectly in sync with the music.

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Need A Change Of Pace? Go Unplugged and Play An Acoustic Gig

Kiss - Unplugged in 1995

   The “rock band plays acoustic gig” format really came to popularity when MTV introduced the “Unplugged” concert series. The series began in the ’89/’90 season with a concert by Squeeze with Elliot Easton (of The Cars) and Syd Straw. From there the series took off, soon every live musician was working up an acoustic set of their music that they could play in smaller, more intimate concert settings.

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Jimi Hendrix Performs Voodoo Chile

This is a classic live performance of Jimi Hendrix performing Voodoo Chile. There’s also a poll about Jimi Hendrix.

It goes without saying that Jimi Hendrix is one of the most influential guitarists that ever lived. It has been argued that he’s the greatest guitarist ever. Whether you love him or hate him, I’m sure you probably have a Hendrix tune that you love.

Here’s my favorite Jimi Hendrix tune, Voodoo Chile. There’s just something about this song that grabs me. I think it’s just the sheer energy and noise in the tune that I love. Anyway, I hope you enjoy this classic video of Jimi Hendrix performing Voodoo Chile. Make sure you vote in the poll below.

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Improve Your Skills By Playing With Other People

Matt Rushton and Tom Warnick

   I remember when I was starting to learn guitar, I wanted to be in a band so bad but I didn’t think I would ever be good enough to do it. I would practice in my room for hours and I finally got to a point where I was pretty good. The next logical step was to start playing with other people. I was nervous, but when the chance presented itself, I seized the opportunity. When I got together with other people to play music, my skills as a live musician increased more than I ever could have imagined. There’s just nothing like the interaction that you get playing with other musicians.

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