Delicious Grace


New member
Having a laugh with the ''Geriatricks'' thing.

Yes, John. Grand pianos are a treat. I have myself an electric Korg but whenever I play a real piano I feel like somebody has told a big lie to me.

I hope you do well with your group.

John Watt

alcaponedudu! It's a little strange thinking you're in Brazil laughing at one of my lines.
There was more news about the military crack-down in your country,
with some people coming back from holidays saying it wasn't as nice.

I like Korg. In the 70's they had two octave keyboards that had two sounds,
sounding really good, and a Hammond B3 imitator that had three or four stops.
A lot of guys had a couple of those on top of their piano.
Korg also came out with "The Wave System", one of the first to do that.
I even got a free Korg t-shirt at a corporate event.

Rodman Hall, an art gallery in St. Catharines, had a 12' Steinway in one room.
I got to jam on that a few times in the afternoon when they weren't busy.
I don't know any songs, just jamming in Cm, but I can play all day.

Nothing happened, no jams, no visits, and the guitarist gave me some Kijiji advice.
I'm making a music studio so I can make a video of me playing guitar,
and the guitarist told me how to embed them, something I've never done.
It's also going to be a place where I can play standing up,
and jam along to CD's or the radio. I might even give lessons, if your guitarist shows up.
I'll set up my 100 watt powered mixer that has mike inputs and quarter-inch jacks,
in case there's going to be some jamming or rehearsing here.

I used hinges so I can swing out my big "Are You Experienced" backdrop,
and use it for videos and then move it out of the way for more room.
I set it up so my head is a little higher than Jimi.
A Yamaha synth with speakers that someone brought in for $10 sold for $20.
I'm going to watch a movie about the United States getting swept away by big waves,
and try to finish off my studio so I can try some videos tomorrow.
I bought a battery charger and four batteries so I can get into it big time.
The thought of trying both cameras and watching them on the computer,
has got me going in a way that recording never did.
I've got what it takes to edit them as movies, even on the TV,
but I'm thinking performance videos, back-lit so you don't see my face.
That's also being outside with a portable amp.
Wait until you see the static build-up I'm going to give that Tesla statue.

Do you use a surround-sound system with your Korg?
You might be able to focus the ambient sound on you better than an acoustic piano.


New member
We're definetely going through some rough times. I hope this is just temporary and after this situation something good comes out of it. We can only pray and hope.

I don't use anything other than the piano itself. I don't have too much skills for the technical part of it. I just turn it on and play. That's basically what I do with guitars aswell. I'd plug it into my portable Marshall and that's about it.

You seem to have a high knowledge about configurations and stuff. I could use some of that because I've never paid too much attention for that part.

Looking foward to see those videos you mentioned. Sounds promising, John.

John Watt

alcaponedudu! I woke up this morning and I grabbed myself some Strat, and played that.
I came up with a new chord progression for a song, really getting into it.
It's funny how it can be difficult to find a chord, spending half an hour.
You know the open C chord, and the minor version. I can easily play those as six-string barre chords.
I'm playing G6 that way, but I'm using the D bass note on the E string.
When I play Am with the C chord formation, I use the E bass note on the E string.
That's so easy to do with the bass strings on the bottom.
You could compare it to "Get Lucky" and "Happy" as far as rhythm goes.
Those songs have a modern r'n'b thing happening by using an open G chord formation as a barre chord.
If you can imagine using an open G chord without the G on the E string, that's what they're doing.
If can remember, that's Nile Rogers, coming out first in "Chic" as a chart-buster.

You can see I'm hot to trot already today.

Now, if there's one thing you can do for yourself to sound twice as nice,
it's being stereo. Everything you listen to now is stereo at the very least,
so why are you still playing mono?
Yes, it means having to double up some equipment, but it's worth it.
Even in the seventies, I wanted bass and guitar speakers on both sides of the drummer.
People in the audience weren't hearing all the band members if you were just on your side of the stage.
Some drummers insisted on having a bass cabinet beside them, saying at least they could play off that.
It got crazy after a while, miking everything, having a stage monitor on both sides,
and then having individual stage monitors, side washes, some bands plugging into mixers without amplifiers,
where it sounded like you were listening to yourself through a transistor radio.
I'm saying surround-sound for you because an electric keyboard could use TV screen technology.
If you were aiming the sound from the four corners of the room at you, it would feel great.
When Jimi Hendrix used speakers in the four corners of the arena, not coming from onstage,
he called where he stood "the axis of sound". That's the real meaning of "Axis: Bold as Love".

You're almost right about me having, not a high knowledge, but a very wide experience with electronics.
And you know where that comes from? Being friends with roadies.
With the custom and self-made equipment I had, I always wanted to move it and set it up myself.
Roadies were surprised I wanted to do that work, and when I played guitar for sound-checks that impressed them.
That's when I'd get into how they were setting up and trying out settings and placements.

If there's one thing I do to help with my guitar playing, it's using what I call a sweetner echo.
That's a mild echo that's always on. It adds sustain, meaning I don't have to press the strings down all the way,
when I play fast, or, if I'm using heavy effects, I'm not blurring the notes if I'm using a lighter touch.
I hope the symphony players here don't see this.
You might think a sweetner echo is a mild thing, but I paid $545 in the early nineties to buy the one I use.
It's a Roland-Boss micro-digital half-rack effect. It does other things, but that's all I use it for.
I keep it insulated with foam protection inside a compartment in my amp.

Hey! I've got some of this stuff out, getting my studio set up.
I'll take some photos later on today.
Playing guitar again, yeah... I feel like I'm back as a human being.
I'm not bragging about my guitar playing when it comes to making videos.
That's as much about making the video, the lighting, the backdrops, and coming off as Mr.E.
And if you want to think that stands for Mr. Electric Ladyland, please, I'm yours.
I still don't want anyone to be able to recognize my face.
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John Watt

alcaponedudu! I just thought of a new word, what could be a band name,
especially if you were playing music with words about social change.
Earitant, like an irritant you like listening to.

Here's a photo of the construction space the landlord used when he fixed up apartments.
Now that he finished the last one, he let me make my studio.

When I plugged in the red Strat to make a video,
the volume was cutting in and out. I was hitting the cord input too hard.
When I first played a Stratocaster upside-down, I used an L-shaped jack,
so it wasn't in the way so much. Now I decided to go all the way and carve a new one.
I could have used power tools, but I did it by hand, taking over three hours.
That's helping to fix my mind about taking my time when I work on the semi-solid-bodies.
I want to make them the best looking guitars I've ever built, and I can't rush the artwork.
I also can't make any mistakes because the wood and parts are all I have,
and all I've been able to come up with for over ten years.

I'm going to make a new pick-guard for the red Strat,
using a humbucker by the neck with middle and bridge single coils.
There will only be one volume control with a three-way toggle switch.
Hear me, Eduardo, this is getting to be very exciting for me,
and wanting to do something because it excites me has taken too long.
For the first time, I see both semi-solid-bodies finished in my mind.
Now I can turn that into my new musical reality.


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New member
Hi John. I don't know what happened but my previous post just disappeared. I remember I said something about your paintings. They look vey good.

John Watt

alcaponedudu! I'm glad you said that about a previous post disappearing.
I typed a longer one, with new photos of my studio, and that wasn't there the next time.
I sent a couple of emails about it that night, so I thought I might have imagined it.
Thanks for complimenting my paintings. I sell them when I start showing them around.

You mentioned that you didn't do art, so here's my advice.
Doing art is like singing. You can say you're not a singer until you start,
so you might as well start as soon as possible to develop that talent.
Now, if it's something you want to feel, you can't just turn it on,
so this is my rationalization for starting to paint again, when I quit after high school.
At least I can do a painting by myself and get something done.
If I was just waiting for a band to come along I'd be doing nothing.
Painting is nice, doing my own thing with the radio on.

Here's a couple of photos of the cherry Strat.
Black cherries have always been my favorite thing to eat,
and the includes eating them and being outside under the tree.
I'm calling it a cherry Strat,
but the nail polish I bought to touch up the carving is called "Ruby Ruby".
I took the guitar in a gig bag to the big box drug store down the street,
and caused a scene in the beauty department when I pulled it out,
asking for a colour consultant.

Wow! This domain is acting up!
Two old photos showed up here first, not the new ones.
I don't know how much you look around here,
but I'm seeing admin comments about using a secondary server,
until the first one gets fixed after it went down a few weeks ago.
They say it was hacked.

I used a Sony and a Canon camera, picking my best shots.

When I was out with my guitar, I told some people I was learning new songs off the radio.
I started singing that Camilla Cabera (my spelling) song about Havana.
My friends thought I was being sarcastic, singing a Latin song so slow and monotonous.
The one woman said she would never make it on the "I Love Lucy" show.

Oh! I scanned my Haida salmon toque and printed it out.
That's just a piece of paper sitting on top, nothing permanent yet.
That covers up the hole... or chamber... from the right-handed input.


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John Watt

I forgot to mention something I did with the tremolo arm.
I cut it back, when it used to reach over the neck pickup.
Now the end pokes out between my fingers, just enough to control it,
with enough room between the middle pickup and neck for some pick and finger action.
It was the top plate being pulled down against the body that stopped it,
not any wood inside the body that the interior block got pulled up to by the springs.
I used a red popsicle stick, using two pieces, and carved it to be the same angle as the block.
The tremolo wasn't installed evenly, and I wanted a light action, so I had to be precise.
After carving, I used a piece of sandpaper between the block and the body,
letting the tremolo unit pull up and push against the sandpaper, working that back and forth,
until it felt the same all the way across.

I usually don't surf the internet or watch You Tube videos, but I did to see about Strats.
I'm seeing guitarists saying you can float a Strat tremolo to push it down and yank it up,
and it stays in tune. I feel that's impossible.
This is something no-one said.
A Fender Stratocaster is designed to be set up and strung up a certain way.
When you break a string the bridge end pops out behind the body, and you feel it,
and the rest of the string should shoot off the tuner like an arrow.

Here's another serious reason a floating bridge is impractical.
If you are using open strings, bass or high end, and bend a string,
you're bending yourself out of tune.
Eddie Van Halen was one of the first to start endorsing a floating bridge,
with a locking nut and a locking tailpiece.
Onstage, he had a wooden block glued in there and only pushed it down.

Jimi Hendrix was very technical and detailed in his interviews.
That's where I learned how to set up a Strat.

Now I want to do some videos of me playing it.
So many members have been waiting for years to hear that.
First, fast jazzy riffs to show speed with a song about speed.
Second, using distortion and a wah-wah, and then no distortion and a wah-wah.
Singing will be optional there.
It won't sound like I've got a plan, but there it is.


New member
Nice guitar, John. For a few years I couldn't even stand looking at a strat guitar. I didn't like them. I've been a Les Paul guy for a long time. As I said before the looking is very important for me and the Les Paul is a masterpiece. It's gorgeous. But I changed my mind and I even bought one strat. All black from the brand Squier by Fender. It's an OK guitar for me.

Looking forward to see those videos.

Have a good weekend!

John Watt

alcaponedudu! Yes, I can see being a Les Paul or a Stratocaster player, being so old school myself.
You only heard about Strats because Jimi Hendrix was playing one, while everyone else was about Gibson.
Jimmy Page was big with '57 Les Pauls, double-neck S.G.'s, just like Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Alex Lifeson,
but it turned out Jimmy Page recorded the first two Led Zep albums with a Telecaster and a Fender Twin.
The day after Jimi died, George Harrison, Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck appeared onstage for the first time with a Stratocaster.

For me, the big difference between Gibson and Fender was the longer or shorter scale length.
I'm six feet tall with long fingers, and Jimi was 6'1", so a long scale neck was easy.
If you're a Les Paul man, getting an offshore Strat means getting a smaller scale, nice for you.
As soon as I tried playing the cherry Strat I knew it was long scale,
but I had to put it beside my authentic Strat neck when I got back to be sure.
The seller sent the tremolo unit measurements I asked about, so I knew it was big.

You're saying "Squier by Fender", but that can mean a lot of things.
When CBS was losing money with Stratocasters, in the early eighties,
they decided to fire up the original Leo Fender Stratocaster assembly line,
what made the 1960 to 1964 models, and call it a Stratocaster Squier,
saying it was a low-budget model. They did that from 1982 to 1984.

I sat with a friend, taking my '64 apart beside his '82, and they were identical.
You might even have a repackaged Fender product, not even an offshore.
A couple of brothers who were roadies and supplied P.A.'s for big gigs,
got to be friends when I was playing guitar in Niagara Falls.
They were the first Fender dealer on the Canadian side of the border,
and got the first shipment of offshore Strats to be sold in Canada.
They phoned me up, saying they had two left-handed Strats, black and white,
and said they could sell me one for $250. That was around 1990, I think.
I bought the black one and took it apart to rebuild it to be like a real Strat,
and took it to my local music store, with a paper on it describing what I did.
I said I wanted $450 for it, and it was sold before the week was over,
and the store owner, my friend, wouldn't tell me what he got for it.
If I remember, it was made in Mexico.

You're saying Les Paul, and now a Strat,
but I'm thinking if you had a Gibson 335 you'd be in guitar heaven.
They're loud enough to play and sing along to and are more feedback friendly.
They also have a five-position "Roto-Sound" knob that really works well.
Wait a minute! You seem to be a very classy guy.
You deserve a 1950's Gibson L5 with a big humbucker by the neck,
just like George Benson used when I saw him in 1970.
That's when he was winning jazz guitarist of the year awards, just sitting and playing.

Believe it or not, I don't have a guitar strap. I've got original, patent applied for 1970 Straplocks,
but I don't have a strap.
When guitar straps were leather or cloth, or both, they would make my neck bleed,
throwing my guitar around, so I got a seat-belt from a car and made my own, nice and slippery.
Now, I'm going to get a nylon one from Thorold Music, my music store.
That will be a nice bus trip for me to do next week.
If I make a video tonight, I'll be sitting down.

Here's my plan.
I'll start with some two note harmony runs from the Allman Brothers, to show two notes,
and then I'll start playing as fast as I can, using two or three notes, kind of a blur,
before I start single-note riffs, not as much as I used to, because I'm still getting my fingers together.
And then I'll play and sing "Speed King" by Deep Purple, to sing a song about speed,
and play the G chord as if I'm backing up a soloist, trying to work up a speedy version,
before I play the rising chords the organist plays to end the solo.
I'll experiment with the lighting so you can't see my face.
Other than saying thank you when someone hands me a set list,
that's as much of a plan as I ever had.
Hmmm? Is that some old spacey rock star talk, or am I trying to play you?

You should put up some photos of your guitars,
holding them up in front of some local background.
I'll like your photos more than mine right away.


New member
Hi, John. The Squier brand is low-budget model as you said. It's something similar to what Epiphone means for Gibson. I still am a les paul guy though I've never tried a Gibson model. Very expensive. For that amount of money I'd rather buy a piano. Even if it's second hand.

John Watt

Hmmm! I don't always want to be typing away like I'm coming down from rock star mountain,
but you're surprising me here by what you're saying, and your attitude.
Okay... I might be a senior player and respect all that being an elder can be...

Epiphone is just the British name for Gibson guitars. They can be exactly the same except for the name.
Epiphone models are different or the same, and there are too many that I've never seen.
I bought an Epiphone S.G. style guitar because the seller was just trying to get rid of it,
and fixed it up to resell it, the only Epiphone I owned. I had to bend the neck a little.
Some guitarists just don't want to get physical with it.

You seem to think a second-hand piano isn't as worthy as brand new. I have to disagree.
If I could own one grand piano, it would be one from the Beethoven Museum in Germany.
How old is that? How wonderful would that be?
and no... if I ever visited Frederik Magle I wouldn't try to sneak something out the back door.

I just started a new thread in musical instruments, about Stratocasters and what's out there now.
I'm not suggesting it to you as something you should read, but it talks about all kinds of Strats.
Basically, thinking of you as being in an "offshore country", a Stratocaster is a Stratocaster,
and if it isn't Fender made in California, there's always going to be some short-comings with how it's made.
Here again, I would sooner have a used, cheaper Stratocaster, and fix it up to be real and how I like it.
I just spent $100 for my cherry Strat when the seller asked $90, also getting a nice nylon gig bag,
and if I install new DiMarzio pickups that's over $450 retail price just for those.

I shouldn't be typing this here with you because local people with criminal interest monitor my computer use.
Admin here have had to deal with new members who join just to create problems for me.
I phoned Ring Music in Toronto, where I went to get my replica necks and Stratocaster advice,
to ask about getting a left-handed Stratocaster tremolo unit, wanting authentic Fender design.
I didn't care if it was a Fender product or offshore manufacture, as long as it was the same.
I was surprised they didn't have one for sale, and talked as staff searched on their computer.
A 1970 Fender left-handed tremolo unit was selling for over $5,000 in a California music store.
That was the only Fender product online for sale.
Other than that, I'd have to buy a left-handed guitar just for a tremolo unit I probably won't like.
I'm not a machinist, so I'm not going to be able to do any metal work to get it to where it should be.
That's a very serious balance between string vibration and spring action, how it pivots on the body.
The tremolo unit in the cherry Strat has a thinner plate with a more shallow angle,
that is back further from the screws. Setting it up as best I can, it's still too hard to push down,
if you want to always be resting your palm on it to float along with your tuning and detuning.
I've got two 1972 Fender Stratocaster tremolo units, asking about a third for the cherry Strat.

Eventually, if I keep upgrading it to stage territory,
I'll have to embed a strip of metal in the body underneath the tremolo unit,
sticking up above body level, to give it more of a pivot point for moving up and down.
I could get some welding added across it, but I'd be taking a chance on warping it from heat,
and I'd probably be filing that down for a week to get it to where it should be,
and if I filed it too much or not enough and needed more welding,
yeah... I might as well visit the Wizard of OZ and ask for his help.
Either that, or come to your country that's famous for historic metal work.

Let me ask, what is it about your Les Paul style guitar that makes you think it's not all there?
Gibson used to sell the stickers and inlays they use. Maybe they still do.
Fender used to sell their decals until too many people complained,
that even music store owners were sticking them on offshore guitars and selling them as Fenders.
Is that all it will take to make it real for you?

The first thing I'd look at is the capacitor, what I'm calling a capacitor, on the tone control.
Gibson made them so that if someone else tried to unsolder it or solder on a new one, it melted.
Even Gibson employees sometimes soldered them on too hot, making them not work as well.
You might even have one on the volume control.
You seem too classy to be blasting out volume to use feedback,
but the electrical paint Gibson, and Epiphone, used to shield the pickups isn't the best.
You should get some aluminum plumbers' tape to insulate around the pickups,
and if you ground that you're adding a new dimension of electronic effect to your guitar.
You have to scratch or solder the front of the tape together so the current flows through all of it,
but that's an inexpensive and easy upgrade to do.
I've got a nice little electric meter but all I do is keep it on the same setting,
so I can test to see if the signal is getting through.
I'm still using the 1949 Weller soldering gun my father got for a wedding present,
and yes, I'm not an electrician, just one Watt.

Ancient Andean metallurgy is still not understood by modern scientists,
who wonder how they could do what they did without electric tools.
And those are the same scientists who are convinced aliens landed there 5,000 years ago.
That's all right. I know I won't be around when Quetzocoatl returns.
I still say viva Zapata when I talk with Mexican migrant workers at the supermarket.
You should feel lucky you don't know that and Mazatlan.

During one mayoral debate, I used these plastic Halloween chains from Dollarama onstage.
I said they were symbolic of the steel of knives, guns and hypodermic needles,
from the criminals who moved in to Welland from Quebec to dominate this city after the second world war.
When I was talking about them, sitting out in the audience, I'd point at them and step on an end link to shatter it.
At the end of the debate, the COGECO TV host asked me if he could have it.
He went to the front of the stage and started complaining about what restrictions were placed on them,
by Wellands' City Hall officials, and after he made a signal to the light and sound men,
he started stomping on it, holding his mike to it, and the sound effects were loud through the entire room.
After it was over, as I walked out and saw him with his crew by the portable broadcasting truck,
he walked over to me and said that was a lot of fun.
It was for him, because he got to drive out of here and go back to Niagara Falls.
In my home town, I have to live with my stage presence all the time.

For another debate at Notre Dame high school, I used the chain to beat time on the floor,
everyone already seeing what happened on cable TV,
and sang the first big Drake hit single, changing the words to be about Welland.
I liked that one better.
I'm typing this between nine and ten in the morning after pulling an all-nighter.

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New member
Hello John. How are you my friend? Nice hearing from you.

Well, here in Brazil Epiphone sells guitars cheaper than Gibson does that's why I made the connection with Fender/Squier. But yeah if you're lucky (Yes, lucky. That's a term a friend of mine use and I think it's very appropriate) you could an Epiphone just as good as a Gibson one. A lot of aspects could get into picture like the wood and soldering and all the other aspects you've mentioned.

I have an les paul but it's not a good one. I think I'd have to change the pickups and capacitors but I'm not very good at it. I still like its sound though. The problem comes when I compare to others guitars. The sound is not so ''full''(?) and the tone is not right. It costed very cheap and I get involved emotionally with it because it was my first guitar you know. But overall it's OK for my use.

Regarding the piano I think you didn't quite what I meant. I'm not saying a second hand piano or whatever is better or worse than anything. It was primarily mathematics. To buy a brand new Gibson guitar here in Brazil it would cost a lot of money. With that amount of money I could a second hand piano even if it's not a grand.

I'm not attached to brands and stuff. If it feells right that's all that matters.

I'm going to send you later some pictures of my musical instruments.

John Watt

Oh! Life in the Niagara Peninsula, the source of the first commercial hydro in the world from Niagara Falls.
Every day, every day, you can look at various buy and sell and free advertising flyers,
or look at bulletin boards for shoppers in supermarkets, or see Kijiji online,
and there always is a free acoustic piano if you can come and pick it up.
Giving away "home organs", consoles with foot pedals, is a not-so-distant second.

I could load up a shipping container with free pianos and ship them to you for profit.
A Greek sign customer of mine goes to restaurant auctions and buys up low-ball stainless steel,
filling up a couple of shipping containers with that, and then goes to Greece with that profit.
I just had to say that, so it's not always about being over-saturated with guitars and amps.

It's reassuring to see what you typed about pianos and guitars, not that I doubted you.
Sometimes I just get typing away and think of the global audience has.
Around here, stores that bring in new Les Pauls or Stratocasters advertise them as events.
You don't see them in stock all the time, and yes, that's because they're so expensive.

Here's the text for a "Gibson Month" ad.
"Owning a Gibson guitar has never been easier! Join us in April for extended terms on bi-weekly financing and a zero down payment on all Gibson instrument purchases. Enjoy limited run and specially priced offerings. Receive a Gibson swag pack with every applicable purchase. Take advantage of special rental rates on selected models.
Contact the store or visit for all of the details."

Guitarists can get a custom built guitar made by a luthier, being an all original build,
or get a guitar builder who uses bodies and necks already made by a manufacturer.
You see more of those around here than real Les Pauls and Strats.

That's where I'm at, losing my 1964 Strat in 1972 when I made my first lefty body.
I know what parts I'm still using from that guitar, so I still have my Jimi connection from those years.
If there's one thing you should be admiring about me,
it's the fact that I owned a Strat and Marshall with effects when Jimi was alive, seeing him in Toronto,
and have been using the same picks, strings and replica necks for my guitars,
having the same sounds and feels I always had, so nice for me as a guitarist.
When I play guitar, the totality of my experience is there with me.
Right now I'm thinking of the time I laid in bed with the love of my life, my favorite girlfriend,
staying over at night, singing some Jimi Hendrix songs, only I didn't have my guitar.

I'm looking forward to seeing your photos. You must have more than one piano and guitar.
Now that I'm back to working on my semi-solid-bodies, I'll take some new ones.
They'll be lonely photos, a guitar lying there alone, just me taking the pictures.
Maybe a couple of guitar parts will huddle together, worried about being separated on different guitars,
so used to being in my parts tool box, resting on the shelf,
but when I get out jamming with them everything will be alright, and out of sight.

Les Pauls are harder to make cheap, or copy, because the neck is glued to the body.
Making a neck to be a good one and screwing it onto a body that's a good one,
is why Fender guitars were cheaper to make, at the start.
If the sound of your guitar is so off when you compare it to others,
maybe the pickups are out of phase, or not wired the same.
If one pickup is louder by itself, and both of them on gets quieter and thinner,
that's probably what it is, unless it's got a ground problem.

I don't like saying in phase or out of phase when I'm talking about pickups,
even if that's industry talk.
When you have an electrical current, you can divide it into two parts.
The part you divide that goes through some electronic process,
before you return it to the current, is slowed down, behind the original current,
and that's being phased, out of phase or in phase.
Flanging is doing the same thing, only dividing the divided current into more sections,
what could correspond with the notes of the scale, being that complicated.

Once again, the original or authentic manufacturers were building them with common sense,
but when other companies came along, wanting to build the same effects,
how they changed them to be original usually means they don't work the same way,
and aren't compatible with other effects, not when you're up there in the feedback zone.
People who manufacture electrical products get away with so much,
just because we can't see electricity. As Clan Watt that bothers me.
Why build more nuclear power plants just to power disfunctional cheap stuff?
I better go.
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John Watt

alcaponedudu! I'm beating you to showing some instrument photos.
This is where I'm at today with my two semi-solid-bodies, and doing a big posting in musical instruments.
I'm showing you the beginnings of a new pick-guard for new electronics for the cherry Strat.
This is illuminated sign plastic from a donut shop that would have tracks for changeable plastic letters.
It's reflects light, as you can see, and it's also translucent to let light pass from behind.
Look at those long and thin fingers. I think Nicolo Paganini ghosted up behind there.

I just finished taking photos of the semi-solid-bodies and posting about them,
and cutting the pick-guard.
I'm taking a break because I want to paint the pickups, single coils and humbucker,
either green or red to match the guitar. I'm not sure. I've got 1SHOT lettering enamel.
I see the cherry Strat with the translucent, see-through to the woodgrain clear-coat,
and the translucent green as being tree colours. Too bad I can't do little leaves for fret markers.
I'll probably do some around the edge and when I refinish the head-stock.

s-s-b 1.JPGs-s-b 2.jpgs-s-b 3.JPGs-s-b 4.JPGgoing green 1.jpggoing green 2.jpg

John Watt

I just finished painting the last of the green parts,
so I have to get out of there to avoid making more plastic static cling.
That's a 1972 DiMarzio P.A.F. Humbucker, formerly cream-coloured.
I'm also changing the single coils so I'm painting black covers, not white.
I tested them with my meter and they have a higher output.

Even though I call it my cherry Strat,
I know I'm going to paint a lot of little maple leaves blowing around all over.
I might change the Haida salmon to an embroidered green maple leaf that says Canada.
and then I get to do the head-stock... yeah...

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New member
That's awesome, John. You're a true artist (and a technician haha)!

I'm really looking foward to listen to the sound of your new guitar. Preferably an original song composed by you. I know you got some!

John, I only got one piano (an electric Korg). The other ones are two guitars (les paul and strat) and an acoustic guitar by Tagima. Tagima is a brazilian guitar brand. Oh, and I got an Yamaha keyboard aswell.

Sorry, man. It has been a very busy week. But I'll send some pics this week for sure.

John Watt

alcaponedudu! I'm just taking a break from working on the cherry Strat, not expecting a new posting from you.
For me, this is early in the morning, waking up at 7:30, being almost ten now.
I appreciate being called a true artist, even if you haven't heard any musical proof, like the recording you put up here.
Taking that pick-guard off the guitar I found beside the curb with other household debris, and using the single coils,
really does suit my new head-space, being homelessness last year.

A local bandleader came on to me at the library a couple of days ago,
and he asked me if I'd come over with my guitar this afternoon.
The female keyboard player he has was in a Max Webster clone band in the 80's,
when I was a music columnist for the local newspaper, writing about them back then.
I could say something about her being a hottie, or cute, and wonder if she's single now,
but I won't, trying to be as ambivalent about my sexuality as modern times seems to be.
I'll put the guitar together so it works, and do the green leaves and head-stock later.

I'm not sure if I ever saw or tried a guitar made in Brazil.
When my acoustic guitar building friend Jack Armbrust passed away a couple of years ago,
he didn't have any funeral services and his wife didn't want any visitors,
and I was feeling bad about that, complaining to his best friend.
He gave me two pieces of wood from Jacks' shop so I could use them,
and one of them is kingwood, I think, from Brazil.
If that's true this is incredible, if I can use some wood from Brazil in this guitar.
That might give it a homing instinct, especially if I start eating a lot of bat meat.

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John Watt

alcaponedudu, my kind and thoughtful friend:
Maybe I expect too much as a senior citizen, or elder, and that's still being emotional about my guitar.
That's something I work at, trying to keep the progression of my life flowing with all that I have.
If you see the Weller soldering gun, that was a wedding present for my father in 1949.
It was made in Kingston, Ontario, a city I've been through a few times, on top of Lake Ontario.
When I see the mini-tubes in my Marshall pre-amp,
I remember all the times he took me with him to the electronic appliance store to test TV and radio tubes,
so he could rotate them to make them last longer.
My parents are the source of everything I am, and it's nice to feel that they're still around.
I've only seen my mother in a dream twice, but that was amazing because she was talking to my father.
I see my father from time to time, but he always just stands there or follows me around without talking.
If anyone tried to change me so I lost that, I'd fight to the death before I'd let that happen.

You might wonder where all this death talk is coming from, and yes, I was thinking about it.
When I finish this cherry Strat and my two semi-solid-bodies, for the first time in my life,
I'll not only have two guitars at the same time, I'll have three.
At my age, I can think of them as lasting as long as I can play them,
and that will be the day I pass away.

That's a volume knob from my 1964 Stratocaster.
It's also nice to have something I was using when Jimi Hendrix was alive.
I'll keep that for my first semi-solid-body, and use a tone knob for the cherry Strat.
Painting that green might seem bad, but I'm not just a Strat-man any more.
I'm starting to feel good about making a video.

Thorold Music, in St. Catharines, makes you leave your guitar so a sub-contractor can do your intonation.
I was advised to come early on Monday before they start compiling a list, being busy every week,
so I can be there and get in on it myself.
I might have been the first guitarist to plug a Stratocaster into an oscilloscope to set the intonation,
here in the Niagara Peninsula,
and they would let me do that, but the new device is analog and I've never used one.
I'm going to buy a Thorold Music guitar strap, put on my Straplocks, and then I'll be ready for a video.
No use making a video if I'm sitting down. I've never done that on stage.

cherry Strat 9.jpg

John Watt

Getcher photo hot off the workbench!

You should have been there, alcaponedudu!
When I was jamming and going through songs this afternoon,
the bandleader had me plug in to an amp that had presets.
He changed them from song to song or gave me distortion and feedback for jams.
That 1972 DiMarzio P.A.F. Humbucker was as expressive as it ever was,
and the guitar worked like an authentic Stratocaster.

Halfway through the afternoon he said your fingers are turning green.
You can see how some late touchups I did wore off on my fingers,
just a green tint, but I'm seeing that as a good sign.
When other musicians come over to see how I'm playing what I'm sounding like, that's even better.
He said I was on a higher level. Just a little self-promotion, just for yoududu.

I want to change the embroidered maple leaf to my own artwork,
probably using the green plastic to screw it on like the pickguard,
and I'm going to make a variety of sizes of little maple leaf stencils,
using furniture foam to press on the paint, blending colours to look natural,
and make them look like a flock of birds trailing away in the sky.
That will help spread the green colour around and soften the look of the pick-guard.

I had a surprise. When I tune the guitar I touch the tuning fork to one ear and the guitar to the other.
With my ear at the end of the aluminum extension, it was louder than an ordinary body.

cherry Strat 10.jpg