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Thread: Pulse Bites: What makes you tick?

  1. #1
    i Breathe ... Admin Guni's Avatar
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    Pulse Bites: What makes you tick?

    Now here comes a very weired topic but lately I've been thinking about this a lot. A few weeks ago I started to write an article about how it was when I started out, what problems I encountered, what the major hurdles were , etc.. etc ... and yes, I GOT STUCK!

    The article forced me to answer a few questions in the first place: Why did I pick up the guitar? Why did I continue despite the fact of blisters? Was music intentionally picked or was it just an accident, like today I might become a master in playing computer games.... What was it when I started out that got me hooked? Satisfaction of being able to gain control over my doings in this field, opposed to a static school environement? Was it just that it was just damn cool? Was it a way to deal with aggression, life, generation X???? ....

    Then a few more questions poped up. What is your/my ultimate vision. I mean it must be there otherwise why would we go through the hassle. Is it a picture of you on stage? Is it a special lick? A technique that let's other drop their jaws? Writing songs? A feeling? ...

    Actually I can give you my current answer: I have a vision of one single note being played with all I got inside me - with all who I am. I picture this 'sound' being somewhere around the 12th or 15th fret and it's gotta be a bend - a hell of a bend

    Ok, call me crazy, whatever .... but I'd be interested in hearing your experiences, dreams, visions.

    What makes you tick?

  2. #2
    Experimentalist Koala's Avatar
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    Well, I remember why I got in to guitar in the first place. It mustave been about 10-12 years ago. Im guessing i was 12 or 13 at the time, and there was this girl, you know THE girl when youre that age, and i remember her just loving wish you were here so someone lent me the tape one day and i decided to surprise her and learn to play the godamn thing on the guitar. I did so, and i got the girl but i kept the tape it had the whole album on it and i remember thinking "Hey thats a hell of a long intro for a song, (shine on) oh man, this sounds good". I kept going at the acoustic, and then bought my first electric, right bout the time when i saw pink floyd live. Then and there i decided i had to learn to play at least a few notes just as gilmour did. I got me my fake books and kept trying, and i must admit it was frustrating as hell and painful.
    Music had started as a hobby but it had definitely found a way into my lifestyle. I formed my first "band" (funny enough i still had the same guy on bass) and music replaced, partying, and playing, even videogames.
    Oh yeah i was with the wish you were here girl for 6 years, but ironically it all ended thanks to music it had taken over my life, and when she asked I finally had to tell her one truth all of us musicians know but are usually afraid to say outloud "ummm yes, music does come before you" (WARNING: I stongly recommend that if you ever have the courage to say it you cover your balls and run, run as fast as you can!!!!!).
    SO here i am, wiser (read the warning above ) and still making music, and i guess what keeps me going is just being able to live off the things i love the most, play and travel. And through the power of music, try to keep the world from being flushed down the toilet its floating in.
    Im also real hungry to try to do something for music, i guess, just try to push the envelope, and do better, creative things the world hasn´t heard before.
    And a nothe that defines me? Most definitely a 14th fret big bend on the 3rd string.

    well, thats my story, so ill shut up now.

    Hope it wasnt that boring


    K

  3. #3
    Ibreathe Music Advisor EricV's Avatar
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    Good question, Guni... really cool.

    Well, as I stated in that member feature, I got the initial idea when I saw the videoclip of "Jump"... I sat there, watched the band play that really cool tune, then the solo came on... Eddie did that tapping lick, and it looked and sounded so cool, he was grinning and all, I was like "I wanna do that, that looks like fun !"

    Also, I was pretty much an outsider in school. You know, the one who was picked last when people were getting teams together to play soccer or basketball.
    I was chubby, read a lot, spend a lot of time at home, was beaten up a lot in school. And then, after I started playing, I was like "Hey, I am kinda good at this". I just put all my time into it.
    And when I played some small gigs at my school, my status kinda changed. I have a lot of friends who are musicians these days, and were outsiders when they were kids. Maybe there´s a connection there...

    OF COURSE girls were a factor too, like Koala pointed out... you know that feeling when you have a crush on the prettiest girl in your school, and at the same time you think "Man, I´ll never be with her, she doesn´t even notice me"... so you start to have some daydreams... playing a show at school, really rocking it out on stage, and of course getting all the girls. Gee, that´s deep, isn´t it ?
    But c´mon, admit it, some of you have had the same thing going on !

    And of course that amazing feel when you get your first band together, and you actually manage to play a song together. That feel of fun, accomplishment...

    It´s a combination of many factors... the love of playing, live and in other settings, the fun of writing songs, of playing them with other people, that feel to be on stage, putting a smile on the face of someone in the crowd ( does that sound sappy ?!? ). And of course, music always has been some kind of escape. WHenever I felt bad, it helped me to grab a guitar and just zone out...

    Blah Blah
    Sorry for another way-too-longwinded reply
    Eric

  4. #4
    Experimentalist Koala's Avatar
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    Talking LOL

    HAHAHA! You nailed it Eric the truth behind it all is "we´re nerdy freaks who just want chicks." Hmmmm that sounds like a hip hop hit single.
    Maybe we oughta give up the guitar and give our rhyming skills a try.

    K

  5. #5
    Dream Theater Fan SolitaryShell's Avatar
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    I was going to write a LOOONG answer, but since I don't want to bore you, my short answer is:

    John Petrucci made me pick up the guitar.
    And he keeps me on playing it.
    Practically every bend, vibrato, lick, riff, etc, that he plays enters my soul, bursts into my veins and makes me want to play (his or not his stuff).
    I love specially the improvistation he does with Jordan Rudess at concerts, with fade ins and vibratos (sounds like an electric-guitar/violin), just before they play "Through her eyes" (and no, I'm not talking about theresa and John solo spot).

    And when I hear them play "Take The Time" followed by the jam of "FREEBIRD" (lynard skynard)... or followed by the jam of "ByTor" and stuff (rush)... UFF!
    Too much pretty good stuff thrown at me makes me want to be the best (not to brag but to be able to play all that stuff!!!).

    In other words, any note well played and with feeling makes me tick!

    Yes, this is my short answer...
    Show me kindness, show me beauty, show me truth.

  6. #6
    Chicks dig me Danster's Avatar
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    I don't mind boring everybody, so I'll go ahead and give a long answer.

    Why did I pick up the guitar? My first go round with the guitar was about 20 years ago. Crap, I don’t even recall how or why I got started, or how I got the guitar, and I don’t know where it is now. I do recall some older guys at my church playing, and I thought that was cool. I’m guessing that was what inspired me, but I really don’t remember. Back then, I played for probably 2 years, half-heartedly, and gave it up. At least I remember that it was an acoustic guitar.

    I started again 2 years ago. I bought an electric guitar on impulse, and I got hooked (much to the chagrin of my wife).

    What is your/my ultimate vision. I mean it must be there otherwise why would we go through the hassle. Is it a picture of you on stage? Is it a special lick? A technique that let's other drop their jaws? Writing songs? A feeling? ...
    Well, I’m hoping that some how, some way, Halle Barry will hear me play someday, and she will melt, and become my love slave. Ahem…. I think when I first got the guitar, my goal was just to make some cool sounds (perhaps music?) come out of it. Sometimes when I sit down to practice, that’s still all I’m interested in. I’m much more interested in really learning the instrument now than when I first got it. But I think what I would like to do most is find some buds and have a band. I’m realizing that I would like to make music with other people. Nothing too serious. But I’d like to make some music with a group. I think I’d rather do covers actually than original stuff. Occasionally play out for people. That’d be fun.

    I always had a lot of respect for people who were good on an instrument. Takes a lot of effort. And music is cool.

    Interesting questions Guni, I nominate your post for Post of the Month!

  7. #7
    Ibreathe Music Advisor EricV's Avatar
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    I don't mind boring everybody, so I'll go ahead and give a long answer.
    LOL

    Interesting questions Guni, I nominate your post for Post of the Month!
    Well, you´ve got my vote there...
    Attached Images Attached Images

  8. #8
    Resident Curmudgeon szulc's Avatar
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    Mere words cannot express the deep troubled and joyous feelings I have had inside every since I can remember. Music was a way of expressing those feelings in a constructive manner.
    I feel music is therapy that helps me deal with my demons.


    1/4 step bends at the 11th fret on the g string with a "subtle but human voice like" vibratto, or the open D of a drop D tuning with the wang br being shoved down hard, or scooped from nowhere.
    "Listen to the Spaces Between the sounds."
    Hidden Content

  9. #9
    Central Scrutinizer
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    Hmmm, good question. I think the tricky part of the question stems from the fact we’re taking something of deep emotional significance and regardless how smooth we are with langue, words seem a pale comparison. But, here goes:

    The simple answer: The simple answer is quite simple. I do it because I simply can not not do it. Music like oxygen is a vital element to the breath of life.

    The long answer: I really don’t know why I wanted a guitar. I always had practically since birth J My grandpa played so maybe that had something to do with it. My parents got me a little toy Roy Rodgers guitar that I dug around the house non stop and when I was a few years older I got a real one. The amazing thing even early on with toy guitar in hand was the vast change that occurred when I held it. I was longer that shy little kid. I would dance around and sing in front of whovere as long as it was in my hand. As opposed to my usual sit quite in a corner and read a book self. Anyway, I took lessons. My teacher really sucked as a teacher but I did learn how to read notes and basic chords. I really knew noone else that played (my grandpa passed away not long after I got my first real guitar, but we did play toghter a few times) so I was kinna on my own to figure things out. The real revelation came the day I saw The Beatles at Shea Staduim clip. Lennon was screaming Twist and Shout and something in his voice hit me hard. It was right then and there all these mixed up thoughts and feelings in my head made sense, I saw a means of expression.
    The Beatles made me wanna be a musician/songwriter. Jimmy Page made me wanna be a guitar player. It was through Page,Beck,Blackmore,Hendrix and Gilmoure I really go into the guitar side of things.

    I can realte to everything everbody’s already said.
    I belive the missing link between Macro and Quantum Physics lies solely upon one missing note, The Universal Note. And Yes, Guni that note is most defiantly, “One Hell of a Bend.”
    I think we’re all drawn in some inexplicable towards finding that note.
    "All other things being equal, the simplest solution is usually the correct one." William of Occam

  10. #10
    Registered User CaptainCarma's Avatar
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    hi at all,

    for me the question why I started to play is hard to answer, but I know that I started living on the day I first touched a guitar.

    why do I keep playing?

    - just because ALL seriously satisfying moments I have ever experienced were ( are ) connected to music or have been a result of me creating / performing music.

    more later... I do have to go to bed now... really tired...

  11. #11
    i Breathe ... Admin Guni's Avatar
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    Wohoo!!! - I think this is a great thread and I dig reading every post.

    The girls thing!!! Oh yes, how could I forget this - playing music certainly helped with strengthening my ego (details will be published in my biography in about 30 years ).

    And another great aspect mentioned by szulc: therapy. Probably this is what it comes down to. Be it broken hearts, loneliness, happiness and every other single feeling that we go through in a lifetime can be expressed and 'treated' with music.

    Thanks for all your replies so far!!

    Guni

  12. #12
    Ibreathe Music Advisor EricV's Avatar
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    A funny story regarding the girl thing...
    I once was in the studio with a newcomer-band, and the guitarist had some trouble recording his parts.
    Well, the producer asked whether a friend of his could watch... he brought in a very pretty gal. She sat down next to the guitarist and watched.
    Well, all of a sudden he sat all different ( straight back, chest out ) and played better, too...

    For some people, the "gunslinger"-thing ( you know... playing fast, impressing others, the "rockstar-myth" ) is very appealing.

    To me, it just was an escape from being an outsider. And whatever I felt like, I was able to sit down and channel it through my guitar. It was and still is such a satisfying feel.
    When I play live ( or jam ) it´s just so great to close my eyes and just zone out, trying to get out those feelings on the instrument, while playing with others.

    Also, guitar-playing helped me to overcome a problem I had when I was a kid. I was quite unbalanced, easily aggrivated, had fits of rage constantly. Well, I started to become way calmer and relaxed when I started playing.
    Before, when I tried to do something ( I dunno... playing a videogame or something ) and it didnt´work, I got angry and broke something.
    When I started playing, I relaxed, and whenever I couldn´t do anything, I worked on it until I could do it...
    And it was a great way to get out any hard-to-deal with feelings, like rage ( playing metal-riffs ), sadness ( "Canyon Of Spirits" was written when I was very sad ), home-sickness etc.
    Eric

  13. #13
    Registered User CaptainCarma's Avatar
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    just wanna work up some aspects you all have mentioned, to see if it´s or has been the same to me.

    therapy...

    - SURE. before I started playing the guitar, I was so damn shy. wasn´t able to express my emotions towards other people nor to form them into words. right after I started to play I, from one day to another, stopped to bite fingernails. no lie.
    nowadays I neither have a problem to explain my deepest emotions to other people ( no problem to cry in public etc. ), nor to spontaneously enter a stage to entertain a crowd of thousands with some funny stories etc.
    (...and btw. no karaoke session without me performing a bolton tune... )

    I am definately not a "neo freudian" but I truly agree with his explanation regarding arts and creativity. art is, in simple words, the product of channelised ( spelling??? ) emotions.

    a question that once came up in me, during a self reflectiv moment was why I always tend to write more ballads than for example speed/power/metal/riffing/shred songs? why do I always have the tendency to play laid back?
    why do I, unconciuosly rather hold a bended note over the duration of two bars than to shred at the speed of light?

    the answer was and is quite simple. I just play what I feel and what I am. though I have never been a aggressiv or rude person, why for heavens sake should I force myself to write a song in the powerriffing style of pantera?
    why should I try to kick yngwie´s *** in the competition of the universe fastes shredder, when I don´t even like drivin´a car at the speed of 250 km/h. I can´t even stand a ride on a rollercoaster that was made for children up to the age of 3.

    but when it comes to express my feelings towards a beautiful girl or those of a broken relationship, I´m in the perfect mood to write a song.

    I can spontaneosly name you a whole bunch of songs that I wrote in those situations.

    "dream dealer" - song about the "universe of dreams" that exists in the specific, neverending look between two lovers right before their first kiss. for me this prelude to a (first-)kiss is the most exiting situation you can experience. in this situation, she is my "dream dealer".

    "lost in time" - my current girlfriend and me, we do live 250 km away from each others. she´s very busy with her studies and I do have to do a lousy 3 day per week job, because I can´t pay my bills with the money I do earn with my art.
    because of this, we just got a few days per month to spend together. the fact that these, togetherly experienced days always seem to be compressed to at least a few seconds of complete satisfaction, inspired me to write this song.

    I could go one with this for hours, but I think that it should be enough, to show, that music is more than just a couple of notes played in accurate rhythm.

    at least, to make another of my long stories short, I always do my best performances, when I just lay down, stop thinking about all the studied stuff, close my eyes and let my deepest emotions speak throughout my guitar.

    and the good thing is, that my audience always understands my intention without any word beeing said.



    Marc

    "lent me your ear and I hope to touch your soul"

  14. #14
    Registered User Greg's Avatar
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    Great thread!

    My story is a bit different, I started playing the drums at age 4 (hitting pots and books), can´t remember why. Then I went the whole nine yards, first lessons at age 10, my first band at age 11 ("The wild cats", a bunch of really cool guys in their 40´s). Music school came next at age 16 (1995). Then, 1998, at age 19, BAM! Lost all interest in the drums! I fell into some kind of musical coma, I simply left a life as a musician and started to live a "normal" life... Last year, age 23, I walked into the local music store, and I can't explain why, but something inside me more or less forced me to grab that grey ibanez, pay, and run home... Now I can't leave it alone, I mean I SLEEP with the damn thing! I guess what happened was that I couldn't completely express my emotions playing the drums (I'm an emotional person, OK??), so I got frustrated and quit, but with this instrument I can cry, laugh, scream, giggle, whisper, you name it. And for me, that's what music is all about: emotion, putting your most inner feelings that can't be explained in words into music.

    I think I'm gonna cry...
    Greg

  15. #15
    Registered User fraser's Avatar
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    Hey all,

    Well for starters I am a new member to this site so I hope there are no crazy initiations that I have to go through to prove my worth ! But after reading everyone elses post as to why we all started playing and what has kept us playing I wanted to throw my two cents in.

    It all started when I was 13. My friend Tim who had two acoustics at his house taught me how to play the guitar. Well two years later when I hit high school I ended up getting an invite to join a band the only thing was that I had to play the bass. ... but that didn't deter my guitar playing until I sold my guitar to play the bass full time. That was when everyone started to notice me because I was one of 3 guys in a high school of 1000 people that played bass so I was in almost every band. But it was only recently at the age of 22, 7 years after I stopped playing the guitar to be a bass player that I got back into playing guitar. I remember the day that I bought my guitar a few months ago ... I had just gotten paid and was actually looking at basses but then I got messing around with a strat and this little vox pathfinder amp well of course the sales guy at the store saw me playing and he started chatting me up about this and that before getting to the set up I was playing and I don't know what it was but it all came back to me when I was playing that strat the fun and emotions I felt when first learning to play the guitar so I decided to buy the both the guitar and amp that day!! On my credit card of course ... and have just recently paid that gear off 6 months later!! And I haven't been able to put my guitar down since. I do realize that my story revolves more around the bass then it does the guitar but it relates to the same point that every one has been making it's the music, the creative outlet and sheer fun of playing that has kept me playing for the past 9 years of my life. I really don't care about making it as this big time musician (it would be cool though and I would never turn down the opportunity) but because of music I have found one of my passions in life and have made alot of friends because of it. So that's my two cents the passion, fun, creative outlet and overall stress relief of being able to play music is why I got into it and what has kept me going throughout the tornado of sh#t I call my life. Later all.

    Fraser
    Fraser

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