Sunday, June 26, 2011

Ry Cooder, have I heard the wrong albums?

This is my first personal post/rant.  I love listening to slide guitar players and I'm always looking for new slide players to listen to.  I have many that I like such as Duane Allman, Derek Trucks, Johnny Winter, Bob Brozman, Eric Sardinas, etc...  Throughout all of my research, one name keeps coming up. Ry Cooder.  I have heard and read all kinds of great things about this musician, however, every time I have listened to him I have not been impressed.  I even have a couple of his albums and everything seems to be lackluster.  A friend of mine even loaned me the soundtrack from the movie "The Crossroads".  I loved that movie and the music that was in it, but the album seems drab and boring.  What I want to know is, where are these great examples of his playing?

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Must see movies about musicians

I highly recommend the following movies:


Round Midnight
, is about a Jazz Musician, starring tenor saxophonist Dexter Gordon.


The Crossroads
stars Ralph Macchio as Eugene, a talented classical guitarist from Julliard whose ever growing fascination with the blues leads him on a journey through the Mississippi delta to find a lost song written by the late great Robert Johnson.  This movie is a must see for any guitar player.  It also stars Steve Vai as Jack Butler, the devils guitar player.  This movie has it all, awesome music (soundtrack by Ry Cooder along with Mr. Vai's awesome shredding), Hot chicks (Jami Gertz), along with folklore and legends.

For Love or Country  Based on a true story, this is a movie about Arturo Sandoval, a Jazz musician who seeks asylum from his native country of Cuba.

Sweet and Lowdown
stars Sean Penn as Emmitt Ray, a Jazz guitarist in the 1930's who, among other things, is a kleptomaniac and part time crook. 

Purple Rain
is a semi autobiographical movie staring Prince as "The Kid".  The movie takes place in Minneapolis. It's about a musician's struggle with love, as well as trying to survive as an artist within a chaotic world involving an abusive father.

La Bamba stars Lou Diamond Phillips as Richie Valens, a young teenage sensation that was one of the first rock stars during the 1950's.

Almost Famous
tells the story of a young reporter following an up and coming band on its way to stardom.  Throughout his journey with the band, he learns what it is like to be on the inside.

Shine
, based on a true story, this movie is about David Helfgott, a gifted pianist who lives a troubled life that is further complicated by his cruel and abusive father.  Despite all odds, after years of living in turmoil, he finally gets the accolades he deserves.

Ray  Jamie Foxx stars as the musician/pianist Ray Charles.  This is a wonderful autobiography that shows all the trials and tribulations that Ray went through, from racial inequality to battles with drug abuse.

Great Balls of Fire stars Dennis Quaid as Jerry Lee Lewis, along with Wynona Rider as Myra, Jerry Lee's cousin/wife.

Amadeus is a about the life and times of Mozart, there are some inaccuracies throughout the film, but nonetheless it is highly entertaining.

Standing in the Shadows of Motown
is a movie about all the session musicians that worked as the backing band for all the Motown stars.  This movie documents many unsung heroes that received little to no credit for their talents.

Counterfeit Alert 2

Here are some pics of a fake Ibanez Jem that came through the shop that I work for.


Saturday, June 18, 2011

Counterfeit Alert

Here are a few pics of a counterfeit Les Paul that I saw the other day.  I've included captions of some things that I would like to point out that were obvious red flags.  Also, note that there is no serial number stamped on the back of the headstock.