In another week I will have officially been playing guitar for one year.
I have always been a huge fan of the instrument, chasing the sound at live shows ever since high school. I always thought it would be cool to play. But that was always followed by "I wish I had started playing in high school." Or college. Or when I moved to Austin, the live music capital of the world. Always sometime long ago.
As COVID hit and I slowly realized things were going to change for a bit, I thought it might be a good time to pick up a new habit rather than just increase my booze intake.
The goal had always been to play a Fender Strat. I had a crappy $30 Suzuki left over from who knows where in the basement, and I made a deal with $100 - if I could play 30 minutes a day, five days a week, for a year, I'd get the green light to buy a cheap-ish electric guitar setup.
I kept that schedule, playing for half an hour in the morning after the dog walk. Super basic stuff from the Fender Play app. Struggling with cord changes. Kinda sorta playing Louie Louie and Bad Moon Rising. Quite often I'd get in another practice session at night before bed. After a month of this I walked in to Moondog Music, located in the same building as Benny's, and signed up for weekly lessons.
Through some creative loopholes, the wife allowed me to upgrade the acoustic guitar long before the year mark. I was the proud owner of a beautiful Seagull Entourage. A fantastic guitar that I have loved playing these past few months, though at $550 it's way more expensive than I deserve at this point.
About a month ago it became clear that, for better or for worse, this wasn't a habit that was going to go away anytime soon. So I started talking to a few guitar playing friends and searching around the interwebs. I wanted to keep the total price for guitar and amp below $1500, which is a bit much for a rookie in his mid-40s but is still fairly affordable once you go down the guitar prices rabbit hole.
And boom, there she was. Exactly what I wanted, but used. Same with the amp. A Fender Player Stratocaster and a Fender Champion 50XL amp. $806 after taxes and shipping to the local guitar center.
So I'm pretty excited to tear into this thing. I can even kinda/sorta play a Hendrix tune - Hey Joe, though my solo would be a bit less than Jimi would offer up.