name, city, instrument, years of playing, current band, gear
 #173666  by zblaszak

I’m Zach, I’m a musician from upstate New York! I’m a huge DMB fan but the past few months I’ve gotten really into The Dead and Phish after watching StichMethod on YouTube talk about the genius of Jerry, Trey, and even John Mayer’s guitar playing! I’m 28, and I’ve been playing guitar for 20 years and singing essentially since I left the womb, and I even studied vocals and upright bass in college as a major and minor (respectively).

I currently do solo gigs and play with my band “Homebound” which does a lot of covers from the 60s to now! We don’t play and Dead yet but I’m hoping we can add a tune or two to our setlist soon!

I currently play a Taylor 214ce and a Mexican Strat (currently thinking about modding it?), and I also play a bunch of other instruments but the two guitars are my main things.

Anyway, it’s good to meet you all! Stop by and say hello! Or let me know your favorite show to listen too!
 #173673  by Jon S.
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 #173681  by flat5
Welcome fellow Dead lover. I'm a bit older at 56. I have played and sold strats for years. Change the pickups on that Mexi. strat. That's the best improvement you can make. DO NOT buy a high output pickups but do buy something high quality. Stay away from active stuff. They sacrifice way to much tone. Also, you say you are playing a lot of 60's music. High output pickups were not around then so most of what you are playing was probably done with moderate output pickups or even low output. High output pickups kill your tone. If you really want to go the extra mile put on a new set of Schaler tuners and have a GOOD tech sweeten up the fingerboard and frets with some fine detail work on the frets or fingerboard edges. There is plenty of Dead to dig into . Consult some veteran members for the good stuff. As for bands, if you never listened to Little Feat give them a spin, but only the stuff done prior to 1979. Lowell George died in 1979 and he was the mastermind of the band. Although the did soldier on and some stuff was not bad, it is not the same band after 1979. Welcome and you will enjoy the ride. It never ends with the The Dead.
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 #173720  by Cozmik Cowboy
Hi, Zach, and welcome! I won't say I'm older than you - but I will say my youngest son is about 10 years older than you.......

Congrats on finding The Greatest Rock 'N' Roll Band In The History Of The Universe, despite being born in their last year of existence! (The above-named progeny saw them live, with Brent - but doesn't recall much, as he was 6 weeks old at the time.....) Now, to expand your horizons in their general direction, may I lend the voice of experience? Let Phish & Mayer go do their things - which are fine, but not really in the same universe as the Dead.

Check out the Alllman Brothers Band (especially '69-'71, when the original line-up was still alive), Quicksilver Messenger Service (whose Happy Trails was deemed by no less an authority than Mr. Jerome John Garcia to be "The Most Psychedelic Album Ever Recorded"), and (for a currently active band who I do not hesitate to name in the same sentence as those 3 giants) Achilles Wheel. Rare Earth's live stuff & Santana are worth the listen time, as well.

And I'd replace the pots, caps, switch, and jack on that Squier before I thought about the p/ups. But are you sure you need to "upgrade" at all? Squiers tend to sound dern good stock. I was working at (Oh, the shame of it all!) Guitar Center in '83, and we got in both our first shipment of $150 Squiers (classic American design with Japanese QC) and a $1500 Stratocaster Elite the same week.

I fiddled with that Elite every spare moment for 3 weeks, and could not get it to play near as good as every Squier did right out of the box, for 10% of the price. Nor could any of us get a tone out of it; purely fecal pick-ups in those. And I hold the same high regard for most of the MIK, MIC, & MII Squiers I've met.

If you are unhappy with the tone, first try a different amp. A fair guitar through a fine amp will sound at least really good; a fine guitar through a crap amp will sound like crap.

And if you use distortion, don't even think about modding; once you crank the gain knob or stomp on the dirt box, you're not hearing the guitar anymore, and it just sounds like every other distorted guitar. If that's your sound, put the money into better stompboxes rather than upgrading the instrument or the amp.

Keep us posted.
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 #173721  by Jon S.
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 #173723  by lbpesq
Hi Zach. Welcome to the bus! By “DMB” I assume you are referring to the “Dave Matthews Band”? I was backstage at their first concert after Jerry died. It was at the Greek Theater in the UC Berkeley campus. As a tribute to Garcia, they played “Eyes of the World”, a very nice version. After the show I was hanging out with LeRoi and Boyd. They told me they had never heard the song until that day! I was quite impressed.

Bill, tgo
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 #173724  by TI4-1009
Welcome Zach!
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 #173787  by yojim
Hi Zach and everyone!

I'm new here too. My name is Jim and I'm a big fan of GD.
 #173792  by Jon S.
Welcome, Jim!