Loosing a lot of good ones this year. A few hours ago Doc Watson died. RIP you good man. We flatpick the way we do because of you.
Gig tonight in Staunton, VA – Baja Bean – 10pm
1. Listen to the birds
That’s where all the music comes from. Birds know everything about how it should sound and where that sound should come from. And watch hummingbirds. They fly really fast, but a lot of times they aren’t going anywhere.
2. Your guitar is not really a guitar
Your guitar is a divining rod. Use it to find spirits in the other world and bring them over. A guitar is also a fishing rod. If you’re good, you’ll land a big one.
3. Practice in front of a bush
Wait until the moon is out, then go outside, eat a multi-grained bread and play your guitar to a bush. If the bush doesn’t shake, eat another piece of bread.
4. Walk with the devil
Old Delta blues players referred to guitar amplifiers as the “devil box.” And they were right. You have to be an equal opportunity employer in terms of who you’re brining over from the other side. Electricity attracts devils and demons. Other instruments attract other spirits. An acoustic guitar attracts Casper. A mandolin attracts Wendy. But an electric guitar attracts Beelzebub.
5. If you’re guilty of thinking, you’re out
If your brain is part of the process, you’re missing it. You should play like a drowning man, struggling to reach shore. If you can trap that feeling, then you have something that is fur bearing.
6. Never point your guitar at anyone
Your instrument has more clout than lightning. Just hit a big chord then run outside to hear it. But make sure you are not standing in an open field.
7. Always carry a church key
That’s your key-man clause. Like One String Sam. He’s one. He was a Detroit street musician who played in the fifties on a homemade instrument. His song “I Need a Hundred Dollars” is warm pie. Another key to the church is Hubert Sumlin, Howlin’ Wolf’s guitar player. He just stands there like the Statue of Liberty — making you want to look up her dress the whole time to see how he’s doing it.
8. Don’t wipe the sweat off your instrument
You need that stink on there. Then you have to get that stink onto your music.
9. Keep your guitar in a dark place
When you’re not playing your guitar, cover it and keep it in a dark place. If you don’t play your guitar for more than a day, be sure you put a saucer of water in with it.
10. You gotta have a hood for your engine
Keep that hat on. A hat is a pressure cooker. If you have a roof on your house, the hot air can’t escape. Even a lima bean has to have a piece of wet paper around it to make it grow.
RIP Captain Beefheart
Hello everybody – new month, new weather – time to get the ball rolling again. Couple of things we’re working on:
1) Our 3rd album – Volume Two. Just finished mapping out another song for this beast, titled “Mad” (check it here). Have about 8 out of 10 songs started. Tracking a few of them down at the Music Shed on the 23rd (thanks Elizabeth!). This album is really shaping out – and I’m really happy with how our individual sound is developing.
2) October Tour. Slipping out of NOLA for a minute at the end of the month to play a few shows & festivals in the Carolinas and Virginia with our dear friends Holy Ghost Tent Revival. Got insurance seats in the van now (just need seatbelts). Can’t express how f’in excited I am for this run. Yargh.
3) Causes. Playing a clinic for the children of the Big Top on the 8th, then a gulf spill aid festival called WarehouseFest 2010, then closing out the month with Take the Lake festival on the 30th in Wilmington, NC.
4) My uncle – Bryan Adams – died last Thursday. He was a great man and supporter of the Dirty Bourbon River Show – if you remember back to our Kickstarter project last may – he was the largest of our donors – donating $667. Don’t ask how he came to that number; he was a wild, and incalculable man. A great American. Everything all rolled into one. Check the obit here.
RIP Uncle B.
~ Noah Adams