The Warning recently band purchased a second Spearfish™ 6-string guitar, the mighty Moby Dick. Daniela Villareal has put the guitar to immediate use, in the studio and live. The Warning will be touring the US once visa issues are squared away. PS: The answer is YES.
She LOVES it!
Dany always wants another of your guitars, if it where up to her she would have 10 by now!
In the studio and live, I am sending you pictures…
We arrived home last Wednesday at noon after a red eye flight and went directly to interviews and promotions of our 2 weekend shows (which went great both of them) then Sunday we received at our little studio fans that came from Brazil, Canada, Sweden, Germany, England and the USA, so now we are finally having some time to rest a little before we go to Colombia to the Rock al Parque Fest June 29.
I have a request for you, it would really mean the world to us if you can make a trip to watch them play live, I would really love to have you there, so you can watch them, hear them, be with us, know us better.
What do you say my friend? (Luis Villarreal, Manager)
This beautiful Spearfish™ appears throughout the Gift music video, providing clean and overdriven tones which add the atmospheric thunderstorm within the song story.
Swamp Ash solid body with light relic vintage nitro sunburst finish. Patent pending Element™ single billet aircraft aluminum neck. Patented Intonation Cantilever™ solo bridges, precision machined from solid stainless steel. Proprietary OEM DiMarzio pickups designed by Steve Blucher. 10-position pickup selection, featuring true single coil and humbucking tones.
There’s a local tavern with a long history. During the War for Independence it quartered Hessian troops, the commander of which — Count Carl von Donop — was infatuated with a “beautiful young widow” by the name of Betsy Ross (age 24).
Betsy, when she was not sewing flags for the Revolutionaries, applied her skills such that Count Dunop was “distracted” by her company on Christmas Eve, 1776.
She held him out of position that night, allowing George Washington’s significant victory a few miles north, in the Battle of Trenton. Von Donop’s desire to occupy her territory proved fatal to the British Empire’s ambitions to control the American Colonies.
Betsy entertained the Count at her place in Mount Holly, New Jersey, a few miles south of this very same tavern. Mount Holly is home to a fantastic start-up — Spellbound Brewing — which brings us full circle to Ken sitting beside me on a bar stool drinking Spellbound Porter as we talked politics, sports, and music.
Ken is almost done his doctoral dissertation in psychology, and despite off-hours, the psychologist’s lens is never really dormant. He turned to me, looking over the top of his spectacles: “Son,” he said, “when was the last time you actually played music?”
We’ve been friends since 7th grade.
“All work and no play makes Rick a dull boy,” he concluded.
“You have set yourself a huge first challenge, I’d say. An a-rhythmical lyric, with syntactical sense that spans multiple line ends, sung at the edges of your vocal range, against a rhythmic accompaniment where the melodic component is a textural combo of counterpoint, choppy guitar and an extended, almost freeform bass line. You know how to aim high, for certain.” (Gethyn)
“I like the minor second above the root in the melody on ‘mare’ and ‘feet’!” (Adam J. Wilson)
“Whoa. That’s a left turn!!! Hats off, Rick. That took a lot of guts. Is this gonna be a thing?” (Chris Buono)
“PISCES: You might feel yourself shying away from a situation, which is actually a good indicator that you should go forward instead. The only way to conquer fear is to let it dissipate through the action it was so afraid of.” (Holiday Mathis)
“Rick: Was not expecting this! Very different, love the vibe. Great recording…the tones of your guitars are so recognizable to my ears.” (Gabriel Levi)
“What’s amazing is how quickly you took this from concept to full realization. The tensions and resolutions and irresolutions (and ear resolutions!) really speak to the spirit of what we need as creative souls navigating our paths. Good to see you, too.” (Killick)
“So intense, it made me think of the writings of Emerson and Thoreau which always for me have a certain gravity and profound thoughtfulness about them, a timelessness.” (Will Pitt)
Screen on my phone illuminated. Incoming call: Bob Bakert. Bob is editor of Jazz Guitar Today based in Atlanta, GA. The magazine features jazz scene and instruments more traditional than avant-garde, so it was a pleasant surprise when they decided to do a feature on Goshawk™ 6-string guitar. Ede Wright and Bob Bakert had connected locally, and Bob fell in love with Goshawk’s design.
Bob was calling to tell me the article had just been published.
He’s an interesting person, athletic, fit, intelligent, actively playing (and pursuing) all things guitar since the late 1960’s. Our conversation drifted — as it quickly does — into music tangents. He was still aglow from a recent compliment where a well-respected industry insider told Bob he is an excellent musician. What was especially interesting was the follow-up comment: “Musician, not guitar player. Those are two different things.”
Many of us who play tend to bring a set of patterns (musical or thought) to the guitar, then attempt to fit those into the current context, possibly contextually appropriate. Approaching guitar as a musician, instead of as a player, happens when we lead with our ear instead of our skill set.
This is something I have noticed as well, and mentioned recently in the video interview with Mike Dawes. The difference seems based on the ability to listen. Really listen.
Mind still, and present in the moment, as Buddha would say.
Cradling a cup of coffee in my left hand, I sat at the kitchen counter as Steve Sjuggerud scrambled eggs. The lure of frying bacon would soon wake Mike Dawes — currently sleeping off a six hour time zone difference.
Steve was also simmering baked beans.
“Are beans a Southern breakfast specialty?” I asked. “I’ve had grits and gravy before…”
“Actually, they’re for Mike,” Steve replied. “I think the English like beans with breakfast.”
Photographer Adam King arrived, along with his cousin. “What’s with the beans?”
“They’re for Mike.”
Hoodie-draped Mike appeared, long pale arm extended. Grim Reaper seeks caffeine. “Why does everyone always make me beans at breakfast…?”
So, Mike’s Goshawk™ 6-string electric is nicknamed: Beanst.
The Yellow Cab Prius slotted itself into an imaginary third lane. Horns are a tool to open opportunities, and my taxi driver was clearing our path to Wall Street. Touching 60 mph down the next block, tires chirping as we came to a dead stop mid-intersection, inches from the box truck bumper in front of us.
“Unexpected,” he muttered.
Yesterday, Steve Sjuggerud rang the closing bell for the NYSE (New York Stock Exchange). He was also keynote speaker, presenting his film: New Money. I love Steve, and it was exciting to support him in his new venture, so lower Manhattan was the setting for our meeting this time.
Seven visible layers of security then an elevator ride, we stepped onto the trading floor.
Power is not a sufficient word, but is the precise word. Immersive powered electronic environment, labyrinthine, purposeful. On these screens, fortunes are made (and lost) in less than an instant. Capital from investors and central banks are injected into this abstract Darwinian metaphor, traded so fast that — even at the speed of light — proximity to the exchange matters, influencing real estate prices as companies compete to locate hardware closer to the NYSE.
The pulse of human ambition, the collective physical and intellectual labor of billions of people, flow through this space in fractional seconds.
Up in the balcony, Steve banged the iconic gavel and spontaneous cheers erupted around me as the trading day came to an end (Tuesday, April 16, 2019 @ 4 PM EST). Asia then Europe will carry things forward overnight then into tomorrow.
“Money flows to where it’s treated well.” (Steve Sjuggerud)
Later, at the reception, I balanced a small plate of exquisite medium rare porterhouse as Steve shared his initial impressions of the treble bleed capacitor on the wiring harness I’d sent him for testing. A few blocks away, Steve Blucher’s ears were no doubt tingling. Yes, talking guitars, Jack Ma and Warren Buffet looking on.
Just for a moment my concentration broke. An emotion, unfamiliar, a realization…an appreciation…as two worlds clicked together and I felt the course of this incredible journey in lutherie.
PS: Kind thank you to Steve Sjuggerud and his family (and staff).
My friend Geoff Waldron is an excellent songwriter. When I asked him to put Goshawk™ 6-string through her paces — Nashville style — Geoff composed two absolutely gorgeous pieces of music. Some people just have the ear…check out his playing.
What an instrument! The box had no dents or damage and the guitar arrived safe and sound without a scratch. Still perfectly in tune and ready to play!
The guitar flat out feels like a beautiful woman… like touching the skin of a supermodel when I touch your guitar. The most amazing neck… I can’t even believe it.
You have a fine eye for detail… I should be so lucky to be working with such an accomplished artist such as yourself.
Truly an awe inspiring work of fine craftsmanship.
Truly makes my guitar collection seem like haphazardly constructed hunks of wood and metal. (Geoff Waldron)
Prior to this live performance, the trio recorded Body Systems studio album.
Besides the three of us, we’re improvising with some software I wrote, an algorithmic agent I’ve taken to calling “Skronkbot.” Skronkbot is always listening and always playing; when I press pedals on my pedalboard, I’m turning Skronkbot’s output on and off and directing it to use different synths and samplers. (Adam J. Wilson)
One of the ways I approach playing with Adam & Arto is to activate densities wrapped in a web of harmonic infinity…something like lungs filling to steady the next exhalation. There’s an unceasing propulsive quality from the sum of three people (plus robot!) inserting pantonal panrhythmic melodicisms with consummate attention towards making the group soup a good eat. This is a truly a fretless trio: fret less and listen more. It’s always a pleasure to work with these beautiful souls and adept technological marvels who too have their own say. (Killick)