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by Mike Keneally

Guitar Player, May 1994

The object is to move people to vertigo-inducing heights of passion with your art, and mine eyes reared with achievement when I received a postcard a couple of weeks ago from "D." He had purchased (with, he hastened to specify, his "hard-earned money") my album hat, and decided that in 23 years of record buying, he had never heard anything worse. Cool! I would have loved to discuss the matter with him further, but D., in a decisive show of limp behavior, opted not to include his name and address. Is the strength of one's convictions an endangered species? Be proud of your P.O.V., whether you wield guitar or pen, D., write back!

If your weapon of preference is musical, you might demonstrate this self-pride by improvising. Then choices present themselves: You may allow yourself to dangle unclothed, or once you've culled some fun raw material, the molding may begin. The piece "Fencing" from hat ("Buy it today!"-D.), has been molded severely. I learned a guitar part that had originally been improvised and fashioned two guitar harmonies in response.

Q: Am I truly displaying the strength of my convictions? Am I not masking my untrammeled expression with trickery and fooferaw? Teasing, bed-wetting, bad grades - are these not the concerns of the parent as much as the child?

A: It sounded good to me, so I offer it to you. Presented are the first bunch of bars. Guitar 1 is the bit that tumbled out, off the cuff, lo those many months ago; the other two parts are its contrived companions. If out there among you are people who want to see more of it, write me (c/o GP or the P.O.Box given in hat) and alert me thus. If something like a consensus emerges, I will present further excerpts, with the final installment appearing sometime in 2013.

D.Is A Wuss-Fencing GP0594 part 1

D.Is A Wuss-Fencing GP0594 part 2

A veteran of Frank Zappa's band, Mike Keneally plays alongside Dweezil Zappa in the band Z. And how can you not purchase his solo album, hat [available on Guitar/Immune], this very instant?

©1994 Guitar Player Magazine

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