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  1. #1

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    Great warm up 30 minutes video!
    I practise it without the pick on my nylon strings guitar...something different.


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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    I went through his entire Chopbuilder workout a couple times a number of years ago.

    It took me a couple hours to get through it.

    He does it in 30 minutes.
    "As for me, all I know is that I know nothing." - Socrates
    “Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun.” - Alan Wilson Watts

  4. #3

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    Holy Crap! I'm exhausted just watching that. I may need to break out a headband and some wrist pads. Oh...and a smoothie from the gym. No pick and nylon strings, Kris? Impressive!
    I never practice my guitar — from time to time I just open the case and throw in a piece of raw meat. ~Wes

  5. #4

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    I confess to once starting out with the intention of being able to play through all this at speed along with Mr Gambale, a few years ago, and that ambition fell by the wayside. Anyhow I've started on it again - the first time I looked at it, I'd only just started using a pick again, after playing with fingers exclusively for a fair few years. I think now my pick approach is a lot more settled and developed, so I hope I may do better with the "Gambale challenge" and stick with it this time.

    Maybe I'm weird but I really like section 3 (starting at 9.24 on the video above) as a piece of music in it's own right - it just has a cool kind of sound that puts me in a good mood.

  6. #5

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    The video above seems to have some glitches and distorted sound for my favourite part, so I just thought I'd post it in all it's original early 90s leather-trousered glory...



    love that key change just after 2 minutes 10 seconds, it cheers me up somehow.

  7. #6

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    Also, it wouldn't suit me, but there is an immature bit of me that still really wants an original Ibanez S-series with locking trem and shark-tooth inlays like the guy on the right is playing...

  8. #7

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    @Meggy....Do it! You only come around once.
    "Ahhh - those Jazz guys are just makin' that stuff up!" - Homer Simpson

    "Anyone who understands Jazz knows that you can't understand it. It's too complicated. That's what's so simple about it." - Yogi Berra

  9. #8

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    Ha! ha!

    You bring back memories with this Kris. I bought this 9 years ago. It looked like fun but I never could consistently pick a pattern for very long without breaking down, making mistakes, getting discouraged, and losing interest.

    I may have to look for this again.

    It was fun and entertaining in a "cheesy" way. That was the 1980's for you!

  10. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlsoRan View Post
    Ha! ha!

    You bring back memories with this Kris. I bought this 9 years ago. It looked like fun but I never could consistently pick a pattern for very long without breaking down, making mistakes, getting discouraged, and losing interest.

    I may have to look for this again.

    It was fun and entertaining in a "cheesy" way. That was the 1980's for you!
    Speaking as someone who once tried this and kind of lost interest as well, I'm finding this time that I'm taking a bit more of a "Zen" approach, and that seems to help. So each section is broken down into individual exercises, and I just take an exercise, and really delve into it, figuring out my best way to finger the notes, and taking it quite slow at first, and focusing on keeping my playing as clean and efficient as possible, and the picking really even. There's quite a meditative, or therapeutic aspect when working like this I find.

  11. #10

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    One thing with the Chopbuilder is that Gambale's exercises use economy picking.

    If you don't economy pick you have to make adjustments.
    "As for me, all I know is that I know nothing." - Socrates
    “Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun.” - Alan Wilson Watts

  12. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumbler View Post
    One thing with the Chopbuilder is that Gambale's exercises use economy picking.

    If you don't economy pick you have to make adjustments.
    With respect, and I've watched the video quite closely (even at half speed), I think at least for the most part it's just straight alternate picking. One might expect him to use economy picking, but in this video he doesn't seem to - I guess he still thinks it's important to have a solid alternate picking foundation. There is a specific sweep picking section of course.

  13. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Meggy View Post
    With respect, and I've watched the video quite closely (even at half speed), I think at least for the most part it's just straight alternate picking. One might expect him to use economy picking, but in this video he doesn't seem to - I guess he still thinks it's important to have a solid alternate picking foundation. There is a specific sweep picking section of course.
    I have the tabs for the course. He uses economy picking a lot. The scale practice uses economy picking.

    That's his thing.

    D-U-D-D-U-D...

    He can do it all though but his "method" is economy. I think this is one reason he never got really popular with the teaching videos. Alternate picking is the norm.

    I'm an FG fan. He's great.

    You just pick it the way you prefer. It's just something to be aware of.

    His books "Frank Gambale Technique 1 and 2" are quite good too. He's a very smart guy.

    Frank Gambale Chop Builder with Guitar TAB-mbook_frank_gambale_technique_book_1-0-jpg
    "As for me, all I know is that I know nothing." - Socrates
    “Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun.” - Alan Wilson Watts

  14. #13

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    I looked all over my home last night for the .pdf for this. I found the video but could not find that .pdf.

    I was not ready for the exercises mentally when I purchased it. I may be ready for it now.

  15. #14

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    Gambale is not only a great technical player, he is also very knowledgeable musically.

    He's scary.
    "As for me, all I know is that I know nothing." - Socrates
    “Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun.” - Alan Wilson Watts

  16. #15

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    ...
    Last edited by dasein; 11-17-2016 at 11:42 AM.

  17. #16

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    That video was made in the 1980s.

    Big hair days.

    (Oops! Made in 90s.)
    Last edited by Drumbler; 11-18-2016 at 07:01 AM.

  18. #17

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    After digging through my library, I finally fount the little booklet. It brought back memories. I had only been playing a year or so when I bought it.

    I quit trying it because the fingering I was using was funky. For the first exercise after the warm-up, I was trying to use my pinky. I looked at the video and Frank and his buddies were shifting positions up and down the neck, using their strong fingers when possible.

    I tried it tonight and what a difference playing it with the shifting.

    I am going to try and work it into my routine, since I am starting to get some free time here and there. It is fun and tests my ability to concentrate. Most of these first exercises are indeed alternate picking, at least to my eyes looking at the video on my big screen TV so it ought to be fun as well.

  19. #18

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    I slow down video on my Transcriber soft and practise it...with my nylon string guitar - no pick...:-)

  20. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumbler View Post
    I have the tabs for the course. He uses economy picking a lot. The scale practice uses economy picking.

    That's his thing.

    D-U-D-D-U-D...

    He can do it all though but his "method" is economy. I think this is one reason he never got really popular with the teaching videos. Alternate picking is the norm.

    I'm an FG fan. He's great.

    You just pick it the way you prefer. It's just something to be aware of.

    His books "Frank Gambale Technique 1 and 2" are quite good too. He's a very smart guy.

    Frank Gambale Chop Builder with Guitar TAB-mbook_frank_gambale_technique_book_1-0-jpg
    Fair enough @Drumbler - I've only worked on the first three sections, where he does seem to use alternate picking, even when moving between strings, and it may take me quite a while before I get onto any of the other parts. I am well aware of his economy and sweep picking expertise, and I think his chord work and compositions are very impressive as well. A great guitarist certainly!

  21. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Meggy View Post
    The video above seems to have some glitches and distorted sound for my favourite part, so I just thought I'd post it in all it's original early 90s leather-trousered glory...
    ...
    love that key change just after 2 minutes 10 seconds, it cheers me up somehow.
    I like how those 2 disciples have their heads turned left, eyes fixed on left hand fingers, while the leader is looking straight ahead, ... into the bright future ... of ... the great wide open ....
    ^ ^ ^
    <<< My BlogSpot Page >>>
    v v v

  22. #21

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    "... into the bright future ... of ... the great wide open ...." poetically put @Vladan, and you capture the feeling that track has for me very well - optimistic, soaring above the clouds, the future full of possibility...

    Incidentally, people are saying the video was made in the 1980s, hence the excusable hairstyle and fashion excesses, but I think it may actually have been early 90s - my evidence being that they are using Ibanez FGM model guitars, which were basically a variant of the S series that came out in that year. In fact two of the guitars appear to be the fixed bridge FGM 200 model, which apparently was released in 1994.

    Frank Gambale series | Ibanez Wiki | Fandom powered by Wikia

    According to Wikipedia, the video was released in 1993: Frank Gambale - Wikipedia

    So a shocking example of 80s fashion trends lingering into the 90s it would seem, and I clearly have too much time on my hands to be researching such things, and should be practicing the exercises instead.

  23. #22

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    I have one of those and for all the silly 80s styling it have a remarkably good clean sound. I know it was made for the hair metal crowd, but it is a good instrument.
    I sometimes think it would be fun to bring to a standards gig.


    As for the Gambale lesson I doubt I have the discipline to practice that as much as might benifit me.


    Quote Originally Posted by Meggy View Post
    Also, it wouldn't suit me, but there is an immature bit of me that still really wants an original Ibanez S-series with locking trem and shark-tooth inlays like the guy on the right is playing...

  24. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by Meggy View Post
    "... into the bright future ... of ... the great wide open ...." poetically put @Vladan, and you capture the feeling that track has for me very well - optimistic, soaring above the clouds, the future full of possibility...

    Incidentally, people are saying the video was made in the 1980s, hence the excusable hairstyle and fashion excesses, but I think it may actually have been early 90s - my evidence being that they are using Ibanez FGM model guitars, which were basically a variant of the S series that came out in that year. In fact two of the guitars appear to be the fixed bridge FGM 200 model, which apparently was released in 1994.

    Frank Gambale series | Ibanez Wiki | Fandom powered by Wikia

    According to Wikipedia, the video was released in 1993: Frank Gambale - Wikipedia

    So a shocking example of 80s fashion trends lingering into the 90s it would seem, and I clearly have too much time on my hands to be researching such things, and should be practicing the exercises instead.
    So it was not released in the 80's?

    Wow. I guess like many of us, he was stuck in his favorite period, and it was hard for him (and his disciples) to let the 80's go.

  25. #24

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    Meggy,

    You are right, Chopbuilder was released in the early '90s.

    It's been re-released in 2002 and 2007 apparently.
    Attached Images Attached Images Frank Gambale Chop Builder with Guitar TAB-chop-png 
    Last edited by Drumbler; 11-17-2016 at 09:01 AM.
    "As for me, all I know is that I know nothing." - Socrates
    “Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun.” - Alan Wilson Watts

  26. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumbler View Post
    Meggy,

    You are right, Chopbuilder was released in the early '90s.

    It's been re-released in 2002 and 2007 apparently.
    Ah, so that cover image ties in with the '94 release date for the FGM200 Ibanez model seen in the video, and Wikipedia would appear to be a year out saying 1993. There is some tongue-in-cheek, kitsch humour with the girls introducing each round, and at one point posing with guitars and pretending to play the exercises with Frank - so I suspect FG was playing up to that somewhat. I do find it a fun and inspiring video anyhow - I will have to check out his other releases and books.

  27. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by Average Joe View Post
    I have one of those and for all the silly 80s styling it have a remarkably good clean sound. I know it was made for the hair metal crowd, but it is a good instrument.
    I sometimes think it would be fun to bring to a standards gig.


    As for the Gambale lesson I doubt I have the discipline to practice that as much as might benifit me.
    I confess I was perusing the bay yesterday looking at second hand s-series models. Some of the more recent ones have nice wood finishes, and I don't think would cause too much consternation at a standards gig even (as long as one avoided doing dive bombs etc. with the trem ). So perhaps can be seen as a classic fusion guitar model - I guess that would be my justification for getting one, and I do sometimes think it would be nice to use a bit of subtle trem "shading". I've no doubt they were/are fine instruments.

  28. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by kris View Post
    Great warm up 30 minutes video!
    I practise it without the pick on my nylon strings guitar...something different.

    This might be a dumb question, kris, but how do you use the Youtube video during your exercises so can play the correct part and keep up?

    I am wondering if these exercises can be memorized.

    I am guessing they can if you take them a section at a time.

    What do you think?

  29. #28

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    Note: I removed my earlier post, after someone pointed out how insensitive and boorish it is to ascribe hearsay to someone (particularly about a third-party) without their knowledge or consent.

    While it's not your fault at all, I would appreciate if anyone who quoted me could edit that part out.

    Mea culpa, and apologies again to everyone involved.

  30. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlsoRan View Post
    This might be a dumb question, kris, but how do you use the Youtube video during your exercises so can play the correct part and keep up?

    I am wondering if these exercises can be memorized.

    I am guessing they can if you take them a section at a time.

    What do you think?
    I'd be interested to know what kris thinks as well AlsoRan, but speaking for myself, I find it definitely has become a thing to memorise - I take it one exercise at a time, with the aforementioned slow at first "Zen" approach, and after a bit of time, the exercise is inevitably commited to memory. And having a muscle memory developed for each exercise does seem to help with playing through a full section smoothly and cleanly. Still very much a work in progress for me, but I can't really imagine being able to get to my goal of being able to play along with the video at speed, without memorising everything.

  31. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumbler View Post
    One thing with the Chopbuilder is that Gambale's exercises use economy picking.

    If you don't economy pick you have to make adjustments.
    You aroused my curiosity about the proper picking. I looked at the exercises and in titles some are labeled "warm-up alternate picking." As you advance and start doing little phrases, then it gets labeled differently.
    I know from looking at Frank's other videos that he uses his own brand of economy picking and sweep picking. It will be a challenge trying to figure out the picking that he wants you to use. I at least have the video and can maybe pick out what he does. If I like it, I will copy him. If not, I will stick with my own ways.
    Last edited by AlsoRan; 11-17-2016 at 10:52 PM.

  32. #31

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    How I practise with this video?....:
    1.Slow down on my Transcriber .
    2.I've marked numbers of exercises.
    3.More difficult exercises I looped with Transcriber and I've memorised.
    4.I play longer parts ..for ex. only triplets and next only sixth...
    5.I try to play with video in orginal tempo -first half of video and next all video.

    I start to play it with slower tempo -feel comfortable and relax/look at your right and left hand/.
    Best
    Kris
    I think this is a great warm up video!
    Last edited by kris; 11-18-2016 at 05:33 AM.

  33. #32

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    Thanks, Kris!

  34. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by Meggy View Post
    The video above seems to have some glitches and distorted sound for my favourite part, so I just thought I'd post it in all it's original early 90s leather-trousered glory...

    love that key change just after 2 minutes 10 seconds, it cheers me up somehow.
    You guys have really started something on this one. I have been having fun and am just about ready to start on Round 3.

    I am happy to say that Round 2 has some of the same patterns as Round 1, just transposed up 3 frets to C. This is making memorization a little easier.

    And like you, Meggy, I like the little riffs and key changes as well. Round 4 is all about the modes. I don't want to start and quit that section like I have so many other lessons so I will hold off on integrating it.

  35. #34

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    Oh man, I love the Chopbuilder. I was doing parts of this regularly last year. I really dig legato/economy/sweep picking...Frank's just 'the man'.

    The leather pants...when I was a kid we would joke that ONLY Frank G. could get away with wearing that. I remember the one instructional DVD where he has leather pants, a yellow Ibanez /and/ a [pink?] Tweety Bird shirt. The man is a beast lol...

    This thread is inspiring though, I might have to pick this back up and really learn the whole thing. ...I really learned Tom Quayle's Legato workout the whole way through and feel like it helped me improve. ...now where's my stretch pants and headband...

  36. #35

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    I have seen a lot of Frank's videos. Something about his manner makes me think he is a pretty cool person to know.

    I wonder if he looks back at his clothing and hair and winces. I know when I see old pictures of myself I can't help but shake my head.

    But this chopbuilder is starting to correct some alternate picking issues I have struggled with. Very encouraging.

    It is probably a good idea to include some of your own original lines in the workout, or practice them this way.

  37. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlsoRan View Post
    You guys have really started something on this one. I have been having fun and am just about ready to start on Round 3.

    I am happy to say that Round 2 has some of the same patterns as Round 1, just transposed up 3 frets to C. This is making memorization a little easier.

    And like you, Meggy, I like the little riffs and key changes as well. Round 4 is all about the modes. I don't want to start and quit that section like I have so many other lessons so I will hold off on integrating it.
    Glad to hear your progressing so well AlsoRan - afraid I've only been able to look at the Chopbuilder occasionally of late (ironically due to gigs, and preparing for gigs) but I'm having a good bash at the first couple of rounds today.

    I do still have a bit of a thing for Round 3, so I'm looking forward to getting onto that one - I think the exercises would work as cool-sounding fusion guitar licks, and maybe even could be applied to other styles as well. I'd say there's a lot in just in those first 3 rounds, so I will give myself a pat on the back when I've got them down cleanly at speed.

  38. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlsoRan View Post
    You guys have really started something on this one. I have been having fun and am just about ready to start on Round 3.

    I am happy to say that Round 2 has some of the same patterns as Round 1, just transposed up 3 frets to C. This is making memorization a little easier.

    And like you, Meggy, I like the little riffs and key changes as well. Round 4 is all about the modes. I don't want to start and quit that section like I have so many other lessons so I will hold off on integrating it.
    You practice it however you like, but I would not be afraid of jumping into the scale sections.


    IMO, the scale sections of that video are the MOST useful. Not many guys know all the 3NPS modes for major, melodic minor, and harmonic minor and know them cold.


    The warmup sections are good, but they're quite difficult and would take a while for most players to get up to speed. In the meantime, I feel like it would be a mistake to ignore the scale sections, since you might be waiting quite a while.

  39. #38

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    Does anybody have a good guess on how many beats per minute they play at in the video?

  40. #39

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    Rant:

    Why the @##!$$% is it I never seem to chose good fingering? In the FG video, round 1, I bar across strings when he frets consecutive notes in the same fret but going to different strings.

    I looked at the video, and he actually uses his other fingers and crams them into each fret. For example, if he goes from the fifth fret, 3rd string to fifth fret, 2nd string to fifth fret, 1st string, he does not roll his finger, he actually frets each note with different fingers.

    I don't want to question his technique, deviate and shortchange myself. And I was just having so much fun....#@#$#%@!! See for yourself.


  41. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlsoRan View Post
    Rant:

    Why the @##!$$% is it I never seem to chose good fingering? In the FG video, round 1, I bar across strings when he frets consecutive notes in the same fret but going to different strings.

    I looked at the video, and he actually uses his other fingers and crams them into each fret. For example, if he goes from the fifth fret, 3rd string to fifth fret, 2nd string to fifth fret, 1st string, he does not roll his finger, he actually frets each note with different fingers.

    I don't want to question his technique, deviate and shortchange myself. And I was just having so much fun....#@#$#%@!! See for yourself.

    I had already noticed (and adopted) FG's way of swapping fingers when moving across on the same fret - he kind of feeds from one finger to the next, and I guess that could help with keeping a clean articulation between the notes. But I don't think it's the only sensible fingering to use, and I doubt FG would think that either. For one thing, there is no right hand fingering indication given in the accompanying music/tab booklet, and for another, looking at the two disciples playing the same exercises, and they seem to do a rolling bar across like you describe AlsoRan. I reckon FG would say it is the results that count, and that any sensible fingering method is fine. Of course we can't ask FG, but I definitely think that, for what it's worth!

  42. #41

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    You make great points.

    But you know something? I have found that rolling fingers slows me down (besides the risk of lessened articulation, as you mentioned).

    I wonder if the swapping of fingers is part of what makes Frank so fast? Just a thought.

    If I am still curious, I might have to see if I can find some sort of email address for him.

  43. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlsoRan View Post
    You make great points.

    But you know something? I have found that rolling fingers slows me down (besides the risk of lessened articulation, as you mentioned).

    I wonder if the swapping of fingers is part of what makes Frank so fast? Just a thought.

    If I am still curious, I might have to see if I can find some sort of email address for him.
    I don't know if FG uses that kind of fingering approach as a matter of course AlsoRan - in fact I seem to remember reading something in an issue of Guitar Player where he was actually talking about developing the "rolling finger" technique for playing lines with the same fret on adjacent strings.

    Of course, that's not to negate what you say about the slowing down issue you feel there is for the specific Chopbuilder exercises - I guess if it's really bothering you, there's nothing for it but to re-learn those, starting at slow tempos, with FG's fingering approach. In the long run, having done it both ways might actually be beneficial. If he has a website it might be possible to send a message, and I'd be interested to know what he says if you were able to get a reply.

  44. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by wesmont17 View Post
    Holy Crap! I'm exhausted just watching that. I may need to break out a headband and some wrist pads. Oh...and a smoothie from the gym. No pick and nylon strings, Kris? Impressive!
    The look is very important for this type of work.

  45. #44

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