A blog whereby I motivate myself, and my readers, to punch me in the mouth.

  "Punchworthy feeds our deepest Freudian wishes!" --Entertainment

  "The consumate rocker's rocker. Charming, personable... a sucking void of inescapable inner turmoil."

Sunday, February 26, 2006

sick again

I've been sick again. This makes twice in 2006. Not an excellent track record.

Since Tuesday morning, I've been suffering from what is commonly refered to as "the flu"--also know as "the Bird Flu," "the West Nile Virus," or "the Leaking Brain Death-Fog" (my own term).

I think it actually started out as some variant of West Nile, because my brain did that thing where it swells inside the skull until it throttles you out of consciousness. And then sometime in the early hours of Thursday morning it released its grip on me and left me with just the plain ol' Bird Flu. I'm pretty sure it was the Bird Flu, because I've seen a lot of dying waterfowl, and how they generally look is how I felt.

I've never had the real flu before--the one with the aches and fevers. They say it lasts 7 - 10 days. I never believed them until now.

Anyway, I'm on the mend. Please join me in praying that I've managed to successfully quarantine myself (by staying in bed almost 100% of the time between Tuesday and Saturday) from Deb and the kids. As we all know, my family can survive a week where my only contribution is phlegm, but if Deb is out of commission I'll have to hire Sally Struthers for a "won't you please support those less fortunate"-style telethon.

In other news.. why does everyone in this picture look so happy?


Monday, February 20, 2006

holding up Bono

..like the serpent in the wilderness..? No, not really.

I'm a Christian who's fascinated by Bono--or at least captured by his apparent vision--who is also kind of disgusted with the general Christian fascination with Bono. Once again, I'm a walking contradiction.

But whatever.

Meantime, here's what Bono had to say to the attendees of the National Prayer Breakfast. I know it's not original, but I think it's very worth reading, and any small part that I can play in spreading it around, I'm gonna:


Wednesday, February 15, 2006

...like Ricky Martin.

So I'm sure some of you are wondering...


Some of you ...I'm sure... are wondering that.

So here's your de-briefing (from the looks of the above inquiries, it seems like you may need some new briefs, anyway):

APPEARANCE: The guitar is more beautiful in person than in the previously posted photo. It really doesn't look like it's been played much. Amazing for an instrument made in '95. Beautiful. And crazy orange.

TONE: Wowzers. I've got another guitar (Yamaha AES800) that has these same pickups in it, and they sound nothing like this. The difference between how they perform on a maple hollow-body and an alder solid-body is just.. amazing. This guitar/pickup combo makes my Delta do things that it never dreamed of before. It really does sound (dare I say it?) Vox-y. And I haven't done any amp modifications yet. The lead tones are great. Great, great, and great.

PLAYABILITY/SETUP/COMPONENTS: This is the spot where me and The Orange (let's call it that! "The Orange" ..I like it.) are going to have to find each other. As I told Deb, this is my theoretical dream guitar. "Theoretical" because it has all the features that I think I want.. but I have never spent a great deal of time playing a large, semi-hollow guitar with a Bigsby tailpiece.

I immediately discovered that I could pop the low E string out of the saddle when I put too much muscle into it. That is going to require a playing adjustment on my part. Also, the action is set way, way too low. In fact, after its freezing truck ride from Dayton, OH, the strings were buzzing like a hive of bees. It is equiped with 11's, and, in addition to raising the action, I think I'll probably go down to a 10.5. That should be enough to hold the Bigsby while giving me a little more bending room. The Bigsby trem is really nice, but I also want to adjust that to give myself a little more variation. The way it's currently set, you can't get much drop on the strings. Not that I want a ton, but I want more than I've currently got. It seems to stay in tune really well, btw.

The workmanship is really, really nice, with the exception of the volume and tone pots. I think that these are the exact same pots that are in my AEX502--a much, much cheaper guitar, and distant relative of the AES1500. I foresee these guys going away and being replaced with some higher quality components. I'm not buying a high-end guitar and then leaving cranky pots in it. All the other parts and pieces are good quality, and well put together, including the rubber-rimmed selector switch--often a weak point.

OVERALL: So all in all.. it rocks. It rocks, as Kirk would semi-endearingly say, "like Ricky Martin." It rocks a lot more like Brian Setzer, though, in reality. If Brian Setzer had FISTS OF STEEL!!! HO HO!!


'nuff o' dat.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006


It's here! It's here! It'shereit'shereit'shere..!!!

I've got a feeling that the rest of my workday may be a little unfocused.

: -|

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Really, you're too kind...

Some nice words about my new guitar from the industry folks:

Archtop guitars are boundless in time and tradition. There's just something about the classic look and that electric-acoustic sound that has appealed to all genres of musicians from country and rock to rockabilly and jazz. Yamaha crafts some of the finest archtops in the world – our artists have known this secret for years.

The AES1500 and AES1500B are 6-string royalty, ranking among the most expensive and collectible of electric guitars. They are also uncommonly multi-faceted; the instruments that inspired our AES series were originally designed for discriminating jazz players, but they wound up fueling early rock and roll.

The single-cutaway AES1500 and AES1500B guitars are semi-hollow designs with tone and playability matched only by their classic looks. The finest cuts of maple and sycamore are used, and a choice of beautiful finishes emphasizes their stunning highlights. The DiMarzio Q-100 pickups can be split to produce humbucking warmth to P-90 bite. For a true rockability setup, the AES1500B combines the features of the standard AES1500 with a classic Bigsby tremolo

Reviewers have repeatedly singled out the AES1500 as an extraordinary archtop bargin. The combination of mellow sycamore top, bright-sounding maple back and sides and multi-dimensional DiMarzio® Q100 pickups captures the depth and complexity Yamaha associate with vintage models. At the same time, Yamaha's two-way tone controls let you split eigher or both pickups to get many bright, punchy tones the originals can't match.

Of course there's more. They go on and on..

But there's no need to try and post it all here. That's what everyone has google for. So go ahead.. google my guitar.

You know you want to.

Google it, Baby! Yeah!

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Check it out

I would like you all to congratulate me...

Oh, yes. It is true. : ]

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

do you like waffles?

From the former lead singer of Nerf Herder comes...


This is fantastic. Also, his new album apparently has... FIFTY-ONE tracks!! Talk about your "value added"...

Monday, February 06, 2006

mmm... cof-fee...

Everybody congratulate me. I just had my first cup of coffee (or any caffeinated beverage, for that matter) in FIVE WEEKS.

It's good. It's nice. And best of all, now I don't want anymore. I had coffee, first thing in the morning, like a normal person, and now I'm going to go on about my day and not have any more.

Then, tonight, I will be able to go to sleep and dream peaceful dreams and get a good rest.

Unlike last night, where, after five weeks of freedom from caffein, I had frustrating and terrifying dreams of being stuck in a car with brakes that would not work no matter how hard I tried to push on them. : p

Friday, February 03, 2006

Tubes part 5: "and I would do anything for tone..."

For those of you still wondering.. here are the (long and) gritty details of my quest for tone.

The Pro will be sold. Did I already say that? Anyway...

I recently found a really good deal on the AC30CC, and so I started hitting the research hard.

What I keep seeing is that, while it does dish out great tone, everyone in the whole world agrees that it made like crap. It *will* fall apart, break down, and generally make a nuisance of itself. While it's up and running, it will sound awesome--but it's kind of like a Jaguar automobile..1 week on the road, 3 months in the shop. :
So I am really going to try and make the Delta into a little bit more of the type of beast I'm after. I'm fairly confident it can be done. Or at least done to my uncultured level of satisfaction.I'm going to swap out the tubes, and then replace the speakers with a mismatched set of Weber alnicos. I talked to a couple people about the tubes/speakers and spent some time on the peavey forum website. The speakers are 8ohm guys, wired series. So I'm going to replace with 8ohm, series. I've also been told I can do 16ohm parallel.. but that means I would have to re-wire them, and I've yet to hear a compelling reason for that. All I know is that Ted Weber told me, "Some people like to wire them series for a more textured tone at high volumes." ?? I have no idea what that means. Please feel free to clue me in.

I have two wattage options for these speakers.. 20 & 30w. Again, Mr. Weber recommended the lower wattage, as well as some other guy I talked to about it online. This pretty much comes down to where you want things to start breaking up. And if you're trying to construct a faux Vox, everybody says go lower. Earlier breakup and more compression. Go higher if you're wanting things to stay cleaner.

I'm very hopefull that the tubes & speakers will make a serious
difference. I've not read otherwise anywhere yet, but you know how that goes.

IN ADDITION to re-tubing and re-speakering.. I am seriously
considering picking up a Vox stompbox. Big Ben Overdrive.. Over-the-Top Boost.. Treble Booster... But I don't know which direction to go. I've seen some really good reviews of the BB Overdrive, but the Top Boost one is too new, so no one's talking yet. Seems to me that if you can use the TB to overdrive the amp (as it claims), then the BB is suddenly pointless. But that's just a guess.

I'm going to see if I can glean any more knowledge from the forums. I went to Vox's site and listened to their sample sounds for the OD and Treble Booster pedals (OTTB not yet available). I was really surprised by the Treble Booster.. I didn't think that would be something that I liked, but I think I liked it more than the OD tones that they had recorded. It really spread the frequencies out, and *sounded* like a Vox. The OD didn't so much sound like a Vox as it did just.. well.. *overdrive*.. on whatever amp they were playing.

It's likely that I'll just order two or three from musiciansfriend.com and then keep whatever actually works.

But the stomp box thing is all secondary. Or third-dary. Tubes and speakers first, then I'll cross that other bridge. (also, I'm planning on taking the "blue marvel" speakers that are in there and building a little cabinet for them, so that if I want, I can run them as an extension, and have a nice 4x10 setup)

Fourth-dary... with the amount of cash that I should have available from things that I can sell, I *think* this will also allow me to begin the search for a reasonably-priced AES1500b, as well.

Almost all of the above is taken directly from emails between myself and Bill, so if it doesn't seem to read well, that's why. But I was NOT going to rewrite it all just to meet your high standards. Get over yourselves. ; ]

And THEN... Bill goes and drops this on me...
It's a Crate (that's right. crate.) "Vintage 30". Go to HC and check the reviews if you don't believe your eyes. They are supposed to be brilliant. And you can buy a new one for about $500 less than a Vox.

But don't worry. I'm still planning on doing all I said above. Then, if it doesn't work out, I'll to a re-scramble and maybe come home with a Crate.

I will be deeply, deeply ashamed.. but I would do anything for tone... I would do anything for tone... I would do anything for tone...

Possibly even that.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

To the person(s) who use the bathroom before me:

What is your problem, Dude?

Seriously. Clean it up.


"your blog is who you are when no one is looking. ...almost."