In February and March 2012 my brother Brian, close friend Nate Fischer and I were getting together a couple of times a week to jam. Brian and I playing guitar and Fish was rockin’ some bass. Fish joking called us Fish with Horns which I thought was clever. It was the first time I consistently played my guitar in a couple of years and I must admit that I didn’t realize how much I missed it. We learned a couple of songs including some Roy Orbison, Queen, and Tom Petty.
Then Brian, who was unemployed at the time, got a job and we haven’t played since. When that happened, I lost the spark and drive to play that I had found, which resulted in me only picking up my guitar a few select times over the past couple months.
Last week I came up with an awesome birthday blog post idea – 30 albums that define my first 30 years. (A post I’m sitting on until closer to my birthday in April) When I sat down to make the list of albums, I realized that I haven’t listened to almost all of them in years. So I started listening to all my favorite albums again. The albums that inspired me to want to play rock n’ roll like the early KISS albums, early Zeppelin and so on. Listening to these great albums has made me want to do one thing: pick up my Les Paul and rock out!
Now I have songs stuck in my head every day and the desire to learn classic songs from these great albums. I’m starting to get the itch to play some live shows again. I haven’t played live since February 2005 when I played in Vinyl, a cover band I formed with some friends. I’m also kinda getting the urge to write my own rock songs. A task that has always been difficult for me to do musically and lyrically.
Writing music has always overwhelmed me because I can’t improvise or solo very well. So every song I have ever written has been mechanically pieced together and flat-out bland. Lyrically, english was never one of my best subjects. I’ve only started to gain some confidence with my writing over the duration of my blog here, so since August of 2011.
Only a few songs I’ve written have actually seen the light of day, “Gonna Keep Rockin” and “Me and My Baby”, when my cousin Brandon and I played (practiced) them a bunch before he joined the Marine Corps in 2005, and my buddy Mark Hagan, who was also in Vinyl, recorded a rough demo track for me on song called “You and Me”. I want to say that was back in 2006.
The urge play again and possibly write some new songs made me realize something. It’s time for me to stop telling myself and others that I used to play guitar, and I used to play in a band. It’s time to put the excuses aside, like “knowing” I won’t ever be able to play lead guitar. It’s time to expand on my guitar playing, singing, and writing. To push my boundaries and limitations and forget about the fear of failing. It would be more of a failure not to try at all and know I could have.
I may or may not play live again, but I will become a respectable guitarist. That journey starts now.