Play This Riff!
January 22, 2010
So when yer a band with *ahem* history, like your ol pals here at the CH3 retirement community, you go through your fair share of guitars over the years.
Ah, guitars! Do you remember?
The thrill of holding that sacred LesPaul in Guitar Center, the heady perfume of the oiled wood and crushed velvet when you opened the hardshell case…..
When you were just a kid, and had your fragile heart set on that blonde telecaster in the pawn. You finally got your hands on an Ibanez, and though it wasn’t some American made icon, it was yours, goddammit!
Your own guitar to massage and torture through the night……
And it still holds the mystery, eh? I mean, that’s quite a piece of furniture you’re holding on your lap when you think about it. Six meager strings stretched across some plank, a few inches of wire and magnet, all coming together as your invitation to the party.
You sit in your bedroom on a lonely November midnight, your ol pal in your hands and the hurt of the world in your heart. As you sit there alone, weepily pawing at the srings, what else can result, but another instant rock and roll classic!
You’ve transformed your inexpressible longing into a song now, something that will live on in the car radios of America’s youth for, well- forever!
Heh. Either that or you get loaded and spend the night playing the riff to Rock Bottom over and over in a masturbatory stupor!
(Listen to Rock Bottom, the baddest riff ever!)
I suppose a bit of the romance wears off, am I right? We grab the guitars night after night, and they feel as familiar and obligatory as the bloodied crop to the Dominatrix.
Just a tool, it seems after a while—the hammer to the roofer, the condom to the crack whore…..
In fact, it wasn’t all that long ago when they took the guitar from me altogether, and left me to my own devices up on the stage…..
Oh, I gave it a go alright, lurching around under the stage lights like some Down’s Syndrome afflicted offspring of Joey Ramone and Steven Tyler.
But it just wasn’t the same. Where is the phallic sword that guided you through so many nights before? Weapon and shield, the guitar is something you can hide behind or thrust out at a threatening world.
Besides, what the hell do you do- lead singers I mean- during the goddamn guitar solo??
Dance around like Mike Love? Or, God help me, play air guitar??
It was just too much. Before ya knew it, I was hanging the wood around my neck again.
Safe and shielded once again, naked no more!
You grow older, and you fall in love with the guitar all over again, it seems.
Also, you mourn those beauties that will never return, foolishly pawned for Vegas gas money back when they didn’t seem that important.
By God, If I ever get that Rickenbacker 425 back, I’ll be one happy fellow!!
So it was a pleasant surprise when our pal Bob Balch from Fu Manchu called and told us about his groovy new site, Play This Riff and asked us to give him an interview!
Bob wanted to come in and check out the gear and run through a few songs. Pretty flattering, we thought. We’re not known as the most technical guitar gods out there, and truth be told, we usually just choose the night’s guitars to coordinate with our outfits!
And we don’t always handle these babies with the gentle respect they deserve….!
But we’re the goddamn best CH3 guitarists playing CH3 songs out there right now goddammit! So we invited Bob down to the plush CH3 rehearsal complex/test kitchen for a little tour
And showed off some of the rare axes:
Then we ran through a few songs for the cameras–and hey! Only took us 4 takes to nail Catholic Boy! Not like we’ve been playing the song for 30 years or anything, eh?
And bonus, Bob was kind enough to jot down the tabs for the songs
Why didn’t we have this kind of stuff when we were kids, huh?
Oh, you goddamn punks think you’re so smart, with your icephones and carbonite lattes and websites that teach you all the hard earned secrets of the guitar!
Hell, when we were your age all we had were two rocks with used dental floss stretched between….now get off my lawn!!
Do yourself a favor and sign up for Play This Riff !