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Guitar - iameven.com

- Even Alander

I should try to focus my somewhat limited free time, but here I am, adding another hobby.

Learning to play the guitar

I listen to electronic music. Has for most of my life. Rock, alternative and folk music sounded monotonous and boring to me. Harder rock, too noisy. Classical music, too complicated. Rap, too wordy. I know that monotonous is an argument against electronic music and especially techno. It's the varied soundscape that has kept my interest.

When I was 13 or so I fell in love with big beat and continued exploring all the break beat I could find. I didn't like the four on the floor beat very much at the time. Since then I've preferred rhythmic and bass heavy music. Acoustic guitar is neither, but it does have a nice sound to it.

As I've grown older my musical tastes has expanded and now I can listen to most anything. Nowadays I can even listen to pop, and I do. What I listen most to these days is instrumental hip hop and the somewhat trendy genre chill hop. It goes well with programing as I find it helps me focus. They usually sample an acoustic guitar (or piano) and chop it up to a nice lo-fi hip hop beat. For me to start making that type of music I don't need to play the guitar myself, but it would be nice to be able to.

Inspiration

I occasionally listen to the Splinter Cell: Double Agent soundtrack. The Okhotsk Ambient theme is so atmospheric. There is more than the guitar there, but I find it adds a lot. Another reason for the peaked interest in guitar was a visit to my friend Jon. He showed me a mini-guitar and some grips for famous pop songs. I immediatly wanted one.

I'm also eager to learn new things, and my focus the last couple of years has been on programing. Learning a new language or some frame work, pattern or system. But programing is my day job and I want to force myself to relax a bit. I've tried to pick up drawing again, but find it hard to set aside the time for that.

The guitar

Shiny acoustic guitar, yay

As a birthday present to myself with funds from my wife I bought myself a guitar, and to get up to speed I'm taking lessons. I did buy a full-sized guitar instead of a mini one, as I met with a good seller. He convinced me that it was better to learn on a full-size one. That a steel-string guitar sounds better than a nylon-string one. And that my fingers wouldn't hurt after two weeks. The progress is sluggish, but as I do notice some progress I've managed to keep it up. After five weeks of trying I still can't play a full track. Only a handful of grips, and I still use a second too long to change between them. I've learned some finger picking, but can't keep the flow and tempo for long. I'm getting there, albeit slowly. Oh, and my fingers still hurts a bit, so I guess it takes more than two weeks.

I'm hoping to actually play something useful soon, and even use it in my music. For that to happen I will need to invest in some equipment.

Future plans

Talking about equipment. I want to replace my current desktop PC with something less noisy. Researching water cooling for several hours has made me realize I don't want to do that. Up front work, cost, and maintenance being the main reasons. The solution for me might be a laptop, something with a good spec. The Razer Blade is tempting. There will be some work still. I'll have to pick apart my desktop and try to sell it for parts, it might be worth something. I need to figure out some system for attaching several HDMI devices to one screen. Like a hi-fi receiver and gaming consoles.

So that's it. My future plan is to play the guitar close to my leaner home entertainment/work station. Let's see how that goes.

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