Great Guitar Solos – Porcupine Tree Plays The Sound of Muzak Live

I’ve highlighted Steven Wilson before, as well as Porcupine Tree. At this point, it’s safe to say Porcupine Tree is done, despite many fans desperately wanting a reunion.

Admittedly, I feel quite different about modern music today then I did when I first heard this song. When I first heard it, I was definitely the worst kind of music snob, and so this became a sort of anthem to me. Now, I accept that there’s no accounting for taste, and that love of music is subjective. I’m not so sure that music is “going down” so much as it, by nature, cyclical. The genres and styles may change and/or evolve, but the way music is produced, performed, and made popular doesn’t ever really change… it just goes in circles…

That said, I do still enjoy this song immensely, especially for the guitar solo, which is another brilliant one played by Steven Wilson himself… it starts at 2:44 and ends at 3:38.

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Great Guitar Solos – Heart Plays Even It Up

About time I included Nancy Wilson. She really is such a great guitarist. This solo here is, honestly, very short and quite simple. But I’m including it because it works. It’s absolutely perfect for the song, itself a short and simple song.

That’s the thing about great solos… what makes them great isn’t necessarily how complicated they are. You can have a great guitarist playing an amazing solo, but if the solo doesn’t fit with the song, then it’s just not going to sound good. And short, simple solos can sound pretty darn amazing when they fit perfectly into the song. This one is a great example of that.

So…

The solo starts at 2:34 and ends at 2:48…

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Great Guitar Solos – Glen Campbell and Carl Jackson Play Dueling Banjos in 1973

Well, technically, guitar and banjo, but still…

I decided to include this, but I didn’t want to go for the clip from Deliverance because that would be too obvious and pretty much everyone’s seen it.

Instead, I want to highlight this performance from 1973. It features Carl Jackson on banjo and Glen Campbell on acoustic guitar, and it’s really, really good.

I’ve always enjoyed the song (no, I haven’t seen the movie, and I honestly don’t want to; that’s not a judgement call or anything, I’m just not interested), though sadly never really tried to play it because I’m really a terrible finger-picker (although hopefully that’ll be changing as I start learning Bron-Y-Aur Stomp).

Anyways… since this is an instrumental, just listen to, and watch the whole thing…

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Self Care – Great Guitar (and Bass Guitar) Solos: Jeff Beck and Tal Wilkenfeld Play ‘Cause We’ve Ended as Lovers live at the 2007 Crossroads Festival

I’m showing you this for two reasons:

1. Jeff Beck is amazing.

2. Tal Wilkenfeld is a phenomenal bass guitarist that more people need to know.

This one is an instrumental, so it’s mostly Jeff Beck playing an incredible guitar solo. But do not miss Tal Wilkenfeld’s incredible bass guitar solo, starting at 1:34 and ending at 2:27.

If you don’t know about Tal Wilkenfeld, please check her out. She’s incredible. I might actually bend the rules* of my GGS series to show you some of Tal’s solo work, as well. She’s definitely worth it.

*You could definitely argue that bass guitar solos count as guitar solos, and you would not be wrong. And in that case, I wouldn’t be bending the rules at all. In fact, now that I think about it, I never actually established any rules for the series, so… how about this! Any solo on a stringed instrument played with a pick or fingers, a slide, etc counts. This would rule out violin/fiddle solos (for example), but would include sitars, mandolins, banjos, lap steel guitars, and other such instruments. What do you think?

Self Care – My Led Zeppelin Holy Grails

I’m moving another post over from my old blog. I’ve thought about putting this here in the past, so here it is. Also, yet again I’ve got another series of days of just Self Care posts. I’ve decided to stop getting myself stressed over the daily disgusting Agent Orange headlines darkening the news and focus on two posts I’ve been promising for a while now… the policing post and the ableism and slurs post. Both of these have taken me so long because they both require a lot of research, formatting, editing, and so on. I can’t just bang these out in a few minutes and throw them on here. Which, of course, means I’m procrastinating. But not any more. I’m getting them done, whether I want to or not!

But anyways… let’s talk about Led Zeppelin…

As a collector of unofficial Led Zeppelin material, there are so many things I wish to have but don’t. A few rare things are simply because I haven’t been able to find them. Some more are because they’re being horded.

But there’s some material that, as far as most collectors know, simply isn’t being circulated. Indeed, for some of this stuff, whether or not recordings exist is a question hotly debated.

But my interests aren’t limited to unofficial stuff. They extend towards potential official material, as well.

I got in to collecting unofficial Led Zeppelin material on an old, sadly no longer existing forum known as Planet Zeppelin. My very first unofficial recording was known as “The Secret History of Led Zeppelin”, which was a 1-cd compilation putting together some of the material from the BBC sessions that wasn’t officially released. I can’t put in to words how I felt when I listened to it for the first time, but it certainly made me addicted, and I haven’t stopped collecting since.

I’d like to go ahead and list, with short explanations, my top 10 “holy grails” of Led Zeppelin material, both official and unofficial.

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Self Care – How Vinyl Records Are Made

This is a clip from the How It’s Made series… a series I used to love very much.

As for vinyl records; yup, I’m a fan. Initially it was for audiophile reasons. I very much used to believe that analog recordings were better overall than digital recordings. And I’m sure that was true back in the 80s when digital was new and in the 90s when it was upgrading and coming into its own.

Now, though?

Now even downloadable digital files can come in high enough quality that the claim “vinyl records sound better” can, at the very least, be challenged. I do still prefer lossless compression to lossy compression (though, of course, I still use MP3 to carry music with me on my phone), especially for unofficial recordings (like audience recordings of live shows). The reason is because the quality of the recording, especially of a recording of a live show done in the 60s and 70s, is iffy at best (and sometimes quite terrible), and so keeping the audio files as close to the master recording as possible is preferred, as a loss in musical data can easily make an already iffy recording sound utterly horrid. FLAC is the standard lossless format, and my favorite, as well.

That said, though, I do, indeed, listen to vinyl when I can, if for no other reason than I’m the type who likes to sit back and just listen to music, and, mostly for cultural reasons, vinyl is the preferred way of doing that.

So anyways…

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