I’m still here

12 January, 2015 (08:07) | Uncategorized | By: dave

Took a lengthy break after November’s writing frenzy. Just noticed I didn’t link anything here. Eek! For now, you can check out the SoundCloud here.

EDIT: Added a post dated November for the new tracks.


Just getting back into doing some mixing, nothing major.

I’m toying with the idea of setting up a facility where I can help singer/songwriters, for very little cost (to them and to me!). More on this soon.

Later this year I’ll be adding the fifth book in the Guitar Theory Made Easy series (it will probably cover modes). I hope to find someone to sing over some of my tracks, too! :-)


Hope everyone’s doing great, and has great plans for 2015!

Writing Frenzy

30 November, 2014 (20:00) | music - equipment, music - recordings | By: dave

I got sick in November 2014 (man ‘flu’ – there’s little worse!) and over the period of a few days a bunch of new tracks came out of nowhere (I’d rather think they were “given” to me). I uploaded everything to SoundCloud but the main Ambiguation site was offline at the time, so didn’t get the updates.

Basic guitar gear was an Epiphone SG, Line 6 M9, Joyo Fender, Joyo Vox, Winfield “Winnie” Typoon head, Behringer DI box, Winfield dummy load box. Bass was a Squier Jazz into a Behringer Bass V-Amp pro, and everything went into REAPER on Win7, with misc. plugins.

Would love to work with somebody to add words and melodies to these things. They might well need a good dose of rearrangement, too. Maybe some combining and whittling down to fewer, stronger, tracks is in order, too?

Where There’s No Silence (30/11)

Tried (23/11)

Reveal (20/11)

Steady (20/11)

Rebuilder (17/11)

Hush (17/11)

Sealed With a Smile (16/11)

I Think You Should Thank Him (16/11)

Son of Shoulder (16/11)

All tracks are (c) me, and (p) me, 2014.

Lexicon Omega and 32bit REAPER Weirdness, New Tracks

19 November, 2014 (12:54) | music - recordings | By: dave

I bought a used Lexicon Omega to replace my (more than I need) Focusrite 18i20. Around the time it arrived I decided to try 32bit REAPER for some reason (maybe to control the additional windows popping up with Waves plugins? I don’t remember).

I had so much trouble with this setup! Every recording I did was out of time by about half a second on playback, but never my the same amount. It was driving me crazy. I thought maybe the Omega was/is faulty (its MIDI doesn’t work, for example), but then I remembered that there’re two REAPER links on the Desktop. I tried the 64bit version and the timing was fine.

Just a lesson learned.

I’m on the tail end of a week-long headcold / man flu and found myself in a very creative space last weekend. Wrote and recorded five tracks in two days.

Mini-demo – Behringer DI / Winfield amp

5 November, 2014 (09:15) | music - equipment, music - recordings | By: dave

As part of my downsizing I’m trying to get a usable guitar tone without a speaker. My amp these days is a Winfield Typhoon. Here it is when recorded with my iso cab

I got in touch with Winnie (really cool guy!) and said that I was looking to use this fantastic amp with a DI box, but needed a dummy load, and asked about a particular one that was available on Amazon. He said he’d build me one! :-)

So I ordered a Hughes and Kettner Redbox5 to go with my new dummy load and it sounded terrible. Quickly returned! I then thought I’d try the cheap little Behringer Ultra G GI100. Sounds great!

I’m Still Here!

4 November, 2014 (08:01) | other | By: dave

Southpaw Guitars in Houston, TX is a lefty's paradise!

Southpaw Guitars in Houston, TX is a lefty’s paradise!

Work and stuff has kept me away, but I’m still here!

I’ve been working mixing quite a bit over the last few months, I’ve moved my studio to a smaller space, got a Mac (:-O, still use Windows and REAPER though!), and I’m really trimming down on the gear.

All four Guitar Theory Made Easy books are available on Amazon for 99c each. Direct links and a few additional resources can be found here GuitarTheoryMadeEasy.com

More soon!

Quick Update

19 March, 2014 (17:33) | music - writings, music theory studies | By: dave

I’m launching a new instructional series on YouTube called Two Minute Guitar Tips. Each week there’ll be a new video featuring something I think guitarists will find helpful or interesting, and all videos will be around two minutes long. So far I’ve filmed the first seven weeks’ worth of videos. The first video will be available Friday March 21st at 8PM Eastern.


Later this year I’ll be writing and recording an EP. Not sure at this point if it will be acoustic, ambient, songs-without-vocals or a mixture.

I’m also working on the fourth Guitar Theory Made Easy book.


Third Book Now Available!

2 March, 2014 (21:54) | music - writings, music theory studies | By: dave

Basic Harmonization and DIY Chord Construction is now available. There’re a couple of apps over on the GTME site that go with it. Guitar Theory Made Easy . com

I’m working on Book 4 – Extended, Altered, and Suspended Chords and Voice Leading Chord Progressions with a view to releasing it later in 2014.

Get Book 3 from Amazon:


Happy New Year!

1 January, 2014 (14:32) | other | By: dave

All the very best to you and yours for 2014!

I have a few things in store for the coming year. New music. Reviews. Mixing. Guitar building. At least one new book. And a new video web series.

Stay tuned.

20GB of Free Cloud Storage

30 November, 2013 (11:20) | music - software | By: dave

Found this place via the StillWell forums.

If your Dropbox is getting full and/or you’re losing trust / respect for Microsoft and Google you might want to check this out.

15GB free and 5GB “bonuses” each time you refer a friend. It’s all free, either way. There are apps for the major operating systems and so far it’s running really unobtrusively on my system.


Monitor Upgrade – Mackie MR5 Mk3

22 November, 2013 (12:27) | music - equipment | By: dave

Just got back from a vacation in New York city. Man, I love it there! It’s so alive! Decided to stop by Sam Ash, just for the heck of it.

Recently I’ve been experiencing some frustration with the results of my mixes using the Behringer B2030P monitors . The Behringers are quite nasally & sibilant, making everything sound like the top end has been taken care of, but it’s actually sorely lacking on other systems. We need a common ground across as many systems as possible when we’re mixing, and for these speakers to be “dishonest” (they’re called the Truth series, after all :)) is not helping. I tried the tissue paper over the tweeter “trick” and that definitely helped, but I suspect the root cause is a little further down the frequency range and so can’t be corrected just by using toilet paper.

So, at Sam Ash I was able to do something that no web-based window shopping can do – audition speakers! I was listening to a pair of (I think they were) Yamahas and, while they sounded pretty great, and the price was good (I think they were end-of-line), they were HUGE. So huge that I’d have to move my 8 foot desk and mount them on stands (that I don’t own) just to get them to work in my room! Not ideal! The sales guy suggested the Mackies. He thought they were out until we saw a pair hiding (in plain sight :D) on a shelf in the listening room. He hooked them up to some Dave Brubeck and I loved them! :) (I’d recently got a new phone and so didn’t have any of my own music with me).

The harshness of the Behringers is even more obvious when A/B-ing against these. There’s some good bottom end (without hyping) that allows me to really know what’s going on down there (the Behringers were practically asking me to get a sub, as they’re pretty thin on the bottom end). They’re also powered, so I can now find a new use for my little class-t amp. They also look a little cooler, and the green Mackie Logo gets my wife’s approval too (always try to keep your wife happy).

The price was very reasonable, I was able to have them shipped to my home (and not pay any sales tax :)) and I’m very happy with my purchase :-)


If you’re interested, you can get them from Amazon

I’d also like to give a THANK YOU to the guys at Sam Ash on 333 W. 34th Street NYC, NY 10001