Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Not to be missed.

I sold my Fender Stratocaster. Relax--it was made in Mexico. Sold my amp: a little, tiny Crate Z-14 (0r something--standard issue) with a Vox wa pedal. The latter item was worth quite the deal of casholio. My "Strat" I will not miss. I'd had it since 1994 when I cashed out my mutual fund to pay $328.00 plus another $90 or so for the amp. I learned lots of cool songs and also a little to play by ear, and mastered a few solos: Stairway (of course), Achille's Last Stand, and others. I learned as many Metallica riffs as possible, but only a few really stuck with me. After all, how much heavy metal can one play on a chincy, made-in-Mexico Strat that is lighter in weight than balsa wood (not a good sign of quality, as others had let me know) with a tiny, not-tube, little Crate amp? Not much. And, it gets old.

I'd rather play like Stevie Ray Vaughan. I learned one of his riffs once, but soon forgot the technical details. I fell in love with tabulature and trying to learn the 1000's of cool rock n' roll songs out there, but the magazines kept piling up, and I didn't feel like investing the time to learn, note-for-note, someone else's creativity. I wanted my own. Alas, not much ever came. (I think I remember even praying for creativity a few times). Should've kept taking lessons.

Plus, after I got married and had 2 children (well, Monica can take the credit for that), I realized that I needed a basement to "jam" in, which I didn't have. Furthermore, if I did indeed have a basement, so what? I'd rather spend time with my girls than pretend to be a guitar legend in my dank, lonely basement where my only fan base comprises of various insects, peeling paint, and mildew. No thanks. I think it's past my time to see myself playing solo even at a coffee shop or local bar for cash. Not gonna happen. Got my acoustic if I want a creative outlet.

As the kids these day say, "It's all good." So--the 64 thousand dollar question: How much did I get? Well, I went to the guitar shop and brought home a whopping $250 cash. Much more than I expected! "That'll buy you some books for your library," the owner told me. And, it did. I picked up John Murray's Commentary on Romans, his Redemption: Accomplished and Applied, Louis Berkhof's History of Christian Doctrines, and William Wilston's biography on John Calvin. I got all of those for less than $60 at the non-profit bookstore at Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary on Leonard St. in Grand Rapids. All new books, except Murray's Redemption, and that was hardly a notice of scratch or use on it.

I never named my guitar, and never really was satisfied with it. Perhaps I'll buy a real Strat some day, with a nice tube amp, but I doubt it. I'm thinking piano. And more books. Oh, and I gave the rest of the money to the head of the house.

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