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I took piano lessons as a kid starting around age 6 to like sophomore year in high school. By the time I quit piano lessons I was playing classical pieces at a very high level, but I was also really sick of playing piano. What I always wanted to do was play guitar, but I never got the opportunity because I was so focused on piano. It was only until much later, in 1999, when I decided to learn guitar. I had a roommate at the time that let me play her acoustic and taught me a few basics. I eventually bought myself an electric guitar and amp, and started to take lessons with a Jazz guy. My focus at this time was to improve technically, and I mainly played classic rock and metal cover songs with complicated solos. I quit playing the guitar for about 2 years, I think this was around 2003-2005 - when I was really busy with graduate school. After graduate school, I got back into playing guitar - but I was still mainly playing hard rock covers.

About a year ago I started playing a lot more acoustic - I had always been a fan of acoustic players like Nick Drake and Elliott Smith, and I set out to learn the fingerstyle techniques used in my favorite acoustic songs. I think I decided to try to write and record songs about a year ago, after hearing a friend's band's album - I wanted to express myself in my own way. For the last year I think I've been preparing myself for writing and recording. I've been practicing a lot on the guitar, I think I'm finally at a level where I think I can play some cool sounding stuff that doesn't sound too amateurish. I've also been buying gear and teaching myself how to use software like Logic Studio. So 2010 will be the year I write and record my album. I plan to post my progress in this blog, I'm a good guitar player, not great, but good enough. I'm bad at singing, but I think I can work on my voice. I know that I can write great lyrics, I've just always been good at creative writing. I know how to work recording software and equipment. I'm still a decent piano player, although my awesome chops are mostly gone, the best thing I think I took away from my piano experience is all the music theory and the ability to sight read.

I'm not sure I can write a good vocal melody, I think I can. I've certainly spent my life listening to music, digesting different styles. We'll see. I actually think the ability to write a good vocal melody is the most important skill of a songwriter - you can always hire session musicians and producers anyways, and there's plenty of songs out there with dumb lyrics. Anyways, that's where I'm at. I'm in Michigan for NYE weekend at my in laws, no guitar with me. So I'm just thinking about songwriting and reading up on using the Songframe software. So far I have the beginnings of a pretty good song if I can finish it. The chord progressions, melodies and lyrics need a little tweaking but I'm starting to get excited about it.


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