Johnny Guitar

Johnny Guitar from Lucas Reilly on Vimeo.

I was recently chosen as the subject of a photojournalism project by Ohio University student Lucas Reilly. Lucas is a former student and it was great to reconnect with him and have him shadow me for a few days. Not only did he impress mt with his photos, but he was amazingly professional and discrete while capturing these images.

Guitar Flash Mob and Student Recital January 28 2012

After several months of scheming and planning the first ever Athens Ohio Guitar Flash Mob finally happened on Saturday morning. We met at 10:15am to rehearse and at 11:00am we encircled the farmers market shoppers in the center of the mall with 28 acoustic guitarists and launched into Don McLean’s epic song “American Pie.” Each verse featured a different singer (listed below) and everyone joined in on the choruses. By the final two choruses we had just about everyone in the mall singing along. I felt it was a great success and hope to organize a similar performance again sometime in the future. Scroll down for more information on the mob and for photos. I’ll put more behind-the-scenes information in a different post.

American Pie Flash Mob Singers
Verse 1: John Horne • Verse 2: Tag Hauschild • Verse 3: Lucas Reilly • Verse 4: Dan Wasserman • Verse 5: Charlie Houtz • Chorus Singers: Peter Babrow • Sarah Clary • Jordan Dean • Marcus Fakler • Craig Garrelts • Sydney Hardy • Zach Hitchcock • Brad Huffman • Erin Malone • Carter McCutchan • Brytton McGuire • Emersynn McGuire • Misha Mochanov • Matt Oviatt • Zach Quillen • Kyle Reynolds • Rockin’ Reggie Robinson • Sam Terkel • Madison Vassari • Nick Weckman • Mike Witter • Kevin Xiao • Ben Ziff • (Please let me know if I missed anyone!)

Following the flash mob performance I held a short student recital. The program is below.

Student Recital Program – Saturday January 28 2012

Charlie Houtz
Rock Riff Medley: Sweet Home Alabama • You Really Got Me • Back in Black • Crazy Train • I Love Rock and Roll
Star Wars – John Williams

Zach Hitchcock
Volga Boatman – Traditional Russian Folk Song
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer – Johnny Marks

Peter Babrow
Readymade – Red Hot Chili Peppers

Jordan & Milena Dean
I Love Rock & Roll – Joan Jett & The Blackhearts

Tag Hauschild
Crossroads – Eric Clapton

Eme McGuire
Alchemy – Girls Dead Monster

Kevin Xiao
Home – Jack Johnson
Across the Universe – John Lennon

Justin Dowler
Layla – Eric Clapton
Blues Jam in A

70 Guitarists You Really Should Know About

Sometimes I can’t believe how much music my students haven’t heard. So I made this list to help point them toward some of the best guitarists of all time. With the advent of youtube, grooveshark, spotify and other services checking out new music has never been easier. Or cheaper. So pick an artist, go to YouTube, and start listening!

70 Guitarists You Really Should Know About *

Jeff Beck
Chuck Berry
Eric Clapton
The Edge (U2)
Paul Gilbert
Jimi Hendrix
Eric Johnson
Mark Knopfler (Dire Straits)
Alex Lifeson (Rush)
John Mayer
Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin)
Pete Townshend (The Who)
Steve Vai
Eddie Van Halen (Van Halen)
Angus Young (AC/DC)

George Benson
Gene Bertoncini
Lenny Breau
Larry Carlton
Charlie Christian
Bill Frisell
Frank Gambale
Grant Green
Jim Hall
Allan Holdsworth
Pat Martino
Pat Metheny
Wes Montgomery
Joe Pass
Django Reinhardt
Lee Ritenour
John Scofield
Mike Stern
Martin Taylor
Frank Vignola

Acoustic Fingerstyle
Tommy Emmanuel
Michael Hedges
Pete Huttlinger
Leo Kottke
Adam Rafferty

Indigo Girls
Joni Mitchell
Peter Mulvey
Paul Simon
James Taylor
David Wilcox
Neil Young

Robben Ford
Buddy Guy
Robert Johnson
Albert King
B.B. King
Freddie King
Gary Moore
Jimmie Vaughan
Stevie Ray Vaughan

Chet Atkins
Jimmy Bryant
Maybelle Carter
Danny Gatton
Tony Rice
Merle Travis
Brad Paisley
Jerry Reed
Doc Watson

Julian Bream
Eliot Fisk
Douglas Niedt
Christopher Parkening
Andres Segovia
John Williams
Andrew York

*This list reflects my personal tastes. I’m attempting to recognize both musicians that are often overlooked by casual listeners and musicians that young listeners may have not yet been turned on to. Many artists cross genres so don’t get too hung up on the labels. Yes, one could argue that I left so-and-so off the list. Whatever, just listen…

OU AMTAS Restringing Workshop

I’ve been enjoying working with the music therapy students at Ohio University for the past couple of years now. One thing we’ve never fully addressed in class is when and how to change their strings. I’ve purposely avoided dealing with this in the past because I felt that no matter how well I explain the process, unless the students receive have hands-on experience they’re not likely to remember it when they change strings down the road. Eventually I realized that many of the students were playing on the strings that came on their guitar when they purchased it. In at least one case this meant the strings were over two years old – yikes!

So last night I gave a presentation to the Ohio University chapter of AMTAS. The good folks at D’Addario Strings sponsored the event and provided strings for everyone in attendance and enough string winders for those who wanted help changing their strings during the workshop. The left over strings were donated to the music therapy department and will be used for student and client guitars as needed.

I was a little chagrined by the students eating pizza while changing strings, but there’s only so much I can control. 🙂