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iBreatheMusic.com -- The Pulse
Issue #4 -- 15 November 2002
In this issue

@ Introduction
@ What's New on IBreathe
@ Pulse Bites: Listening is the Key
@ Eric's Shred 101-Lick
@ Member Spotlight: Szulc
@ Sizzling Hot Topics


Hello all, and welcome to issue #4 of 'The Pulse'.

There weren't any real surprises at this year's MTV Europe Music
Awards. The event was again over-the-top in the usual manner, and I
can't help thinking how all this money could help new artists with
embracing their careers :-). 

Anyway, I'm glad to see that the Red Hot Chilli Peppers are the
winners in 2 categories (ok, I'm a fan). What struck me was J-Lo
getting awarded with 'Best Female' artist. Sure, one can always argue
about these things, but in my opinion Shakira was far more deserving
of that one. She brought in some fresh breath into the stagnating
music industry. I'll never understand the rules in this business ...


New Articles on iBreatheMusic

by James B Schultz

This article was requested after several posts I made on the topic
"Difficult Picking Exercises". Working on the things you find
difficult is where you are going to achieve the most gain.


by Eric Vandenberg

Greg Howe is one of my main influences and, to me and many others, one
of the most innovative and technically-able guitarists these days.
Heres my tribute to him... including a bio, discography and LOTS of
licks !!!


by Tom Hess

The electric guitar has advanced far beyond the time when someone
could teach himself (or herself) to become a world class player. If
your ambition is to become a competent player and a competent
musician, you need a competent teacher...


by Bruce Saunders

What, you may ask, is a club date? It isnt always a high profile gig
at a happening, swinging club or bar-room. ("Grrrooovy! Dig this, you
beatnik you!")...


by Jamie Andreas

Every day you pick up your guitar and get in the ring with that new
piece, or song, or something your teacher gave you in the lesson. You
try to put on your best attitude, and you grab that piece with both
your guitar playing hands, and you wrestle!


Pulse Bites: Listening is the Key

On Tuesday evening, I went to one of those open Jazz Jams. I haven't
gone to one of these for ages and was quite interested on how it would
turn out.

After listening to a few different acts and playing for a bit I got
terribly bored. What happened? Most players had their Real Book
infront of them, staring at the leadsheets although it was pretty
clear that they had played the tunes before. Guys, this is a real
distraction from the actual music we are trying to create. Our eyes
take over from our ears and leads to an 'egocentric' behaviour,
leaving more or less no space for communication and interaction
between the players. This said , all tunes were played with the same
dynamic level throughout.

I already mentioned this quite a few times in the forums, but one of
the most powerful tools we have to create tension within music is
space and silence. We don't have to play all the time. This goes for
comping as well as playing lead.

So, to sum it all up: If we are familiar with a tune let's not look at
the leadsheet. Let's listen to the other players and try to react on
what they are doing. Be open to dynamic variations and have space and
silence in your bag.


Eric's Shred 101-Lick

In my recent article about Greg Howe, I showed you an interesting way
to play an descending E Minor-Scale incorporating tapping. The lick I
am gonna show you NOW has the exact same notes and fingerings, but is
played in a different way. The first note is picked, then there are
two pull-offs etc. When changing strings, the first note is hammered
on with the left hand. This stretch-pentatonic lick has a pretty cool
sound once you speed it up, a bit Shawn Lane-like.

  |-------6------| |------6------| |------6-------| |-------6------|

Member Spotlight: Szulc

Member name: Szulc
Real name: James Schultz 
Homepage: www.mp3.com/szulc
Location: Nashville TN
Instrument: Guitar, Bass, Voice, Sequencer

How and when did you get started with music?
I came from a musical family. Grandfather was a violinist and teacher.
Father played drums, tenor saxophone and sang. He was performing up
until I was 13 or so. We inherited a nice Upright Piano when I was 6
or so. The school I went to had a music program and we had a Hammond
M3 with headphones in my 3rd grade class. We each had two half hour
sessions a day. Reading and playing were required, this was good for
me. I played violin in 4th grade. I played alto, tenor and baritone
saxophone from 5th grade until 9th grade. In the middle of the
saxophone (around 11 years old), I discovered guitar. I found it
appealing because it was so logical and mathematical.

How did you come across iBreatheMusic.com?
I stumbled upon www.guitar4u.com in 1998 or 1999 and submitted a
couple of my ideas, which were graciously published. When I breathe
was coming out I was starting to write a new set of article for the
old site, I submitted them and have been hanging out in here ever

What styles of music do you play?
I like to play Rock, Blues, Jazz and Neo-classical.

Who are your biggest influences?
JS Bach, Nicolo Paganinni, John Coltrane, Ritchie Blackmore, Jeff
Beck, Robin Trower, Mark Farner, Eddie Van Halen, Adrian Vandenberg,
Yngwie, Wes Montgomery, Pat Martino, Pat Methany, Joe Diorio, Michael
Firkins, George Lynch, Blues Saraceno. I could keep this up for a

What formal training have you had?
I took a couple of music theory classes in college to satisfy my
humanities requirements. One was a jazz improv class and the other was
voice leading.

What were some of the biggest breakthroughs you had in your learning
of music theory?
The big epiphany was connecting mathematical set theory with music.
The first break through came when I discovered the pentatonic scale, I
realized that this was the basis for most of what I was hearing (early
1970's) then I was listening to 'Malaguena' and thought 'there must be
a scale that sounds like this' then figured out the Phrygian mode (
and harmonic minor). I really was clueless as to what these were
called but I had made the connection between improvising and using
particular scales. My dad had a book about triads and I read that
pretty early on.

What practice technique you use do you feel has paid off the most
handsomely in its effect on the way you play?
In the late 80's I played with a drum machine and recorded simple two
chord changes. I believe this really opened up my ears, and allowed me
to really get a handle on mode based playing. I also believe that when
practicing scales you should use mathematical based motives; this
helped me a great deal with playing melodically.

How long did you play before you had your first paying gig?
I played my first paying gig when I was 14 so I guess I had been
playing for 2 or three years. It was a high school dance with well
over 1000 people, I was very nervous so I took my glasses off to make
it hard for me to see everyone. Everything that could go wrong went
wrong! We kept blowing circuit breakers... It was Friday February 13th

What gear do you use?
I have several Warmoth Custom Strats, Several Kramers, a steel String
Takamine and a Nylon string Takamine. I like Rio Grande Texas BarBQ,
Semour Duncan JB and Pearly Gates bridge pickups. In general I like
single coils for the other pickups.  I have several rigs. My main rig
uses a Mesa Studio Preamp and Peavey Classic 50/50 with an ART DRX
2100 SE delay I also use an ADA-MP1 and a ground effects switching
unit. For recording sometimes I use the Pandora 's Box. When I want to
sound like Robin Trower I use a Mu Tron Phasor.

What are you up to at the moment?
Lately I have been trying to score a couple of short films for my
niece and a friend of mine. I want to record another cd of original
material soon but haven't been inspired much lately. Work....

Do you have any interests (apart from iBreathe of course!)?
I used to modify tube amps, now days I rarely use my scope. I do a lot
with computers and have been experimenting with techno music using
Acid Loops.

Sizzling Hot Topics


SM 57, and SM 58's

Technical Difficulties


All About Arpeggios

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