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Jam Session Report... [Apr. 25th, 2005|10:26 pm]
[mood |ecstaticmusical]
[music |"I'm So Hungry For You" - The Police]

Jam session went semi-okay...

I was the first to show up at my bud's house. His dog definitely had a short term memory loss issue; I would leave the room and come back in and the barking would start all over. Luckily his other two mutts were out with his wife getting their monthly clipping/cleaning.

Somehow I managed to set up my gear without the dog embedding his canine teeth in my calf. I'm actually pretty good with all animals, so this was quite unusual. My host assured me that with enough visits the dog would eventually accept my presense and that her bark was worse than her bite. This turned out to be true - and the dog allowed me to pet her by the end of our session, growling the whole time.

Shortly after that two of the other guitarists showed up. I was still setting up my bass as they de-trucked their gear into the living room. The room itself was very good for practicing; vaulted ceilings provided enough space for some good accoustics, and there was plenty of space for us to stretch out. Our eventual full complement of 4 guitars, bass (me), and drums will fit in the area nicely.

We played for 3 hours. It was apparent that my partners had not been as studious as myself - we had to slowly work through our first song - which took up much of the time. We got most of the way through 'Godzilla', about halfway through 'Sweet Home Alabama', and did 1/3 of 'Cocaine' and a few bars of some of the other selections.

Practice would also degenerate into a rif-fest of other songs that were not on the list; I got some good practice playing by ear on the songs they played (all heavy metal - so I was not enthusiastic about it). The guitarists had some timing issues as we worked our way through the songs - so I kicked off the built-in drum machine on my effects pedal to assist. They liked this quite a bit.

As for my playing I did quite well - kept a steady beat and my riffs were spot-on (if not completely correct). I got the supreme compliment from the lead guitarist of 30 years exprience: "you held your own".

Everyone was happy about the experience; and everyone wants to continue the sessions. We just need to get the drummer to commit on a drum kit (he wants to go all-electronic for ease of transport, setup, and quiet practicing in his crowded home) and we will be set (the fourth guitarist was in Chicago for the wedding of his best friend - so he will definitely be there for the next iteration - particularly since he spent a mint on a new tube amp with built-in effects processor).

I made the suggestion that those of us who were not prepared, (who shall remain nameless) practice the agreed-upon cover music before our next session. Not all was lost - we did start the process of learning to play together; the hardest part for me was to ignore variations of timing/syncopation in the lead guitars and just keep the groove rock steady - even as I threw in a few tasteful variations.