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JuanCarlosVejar

Mark Knopfler on an AJ

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Cool. A person who does not finger pick much can learn a lot from his explanation.

I dont really finger pick I always felt the volume was hardly acceptable cause I was used to a pick.

Its only these last few years that I lay blame on the over built unresponsive acoustic guitars in my sphere of use.

This little Braziliian Lowden I got a few years ago has volume & response..and if I had such a guitar at my disposal at 20 instead of 50 Id have played fingerstyle as well as pick.

(Thanks Martin Guitar Co)

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In about early 80's ..maybe 1983..my wife and I were working at my fathers Deli on 7th Ave (night shift..6pm-3am) ..and on a rainy night he came in.

Nice friendly guy..he had a tennis racket on his back & wanted some chicken for his wife who wasn't feeling well I .

My wife prepared and I spoke to him for a while. My wife has his autograph.

 

One of our regular customers at night that I used to talk with who was in his later 20's, was part of the family that managed the Plaza hotel for decades.

They were there when the Beatles first came to America & I used to ask him about that : )

It turned out Mark Knophler was married to his sister...who must have been on skates off to Central Park across the street when he first saw her ,as the song skate away was written about her.

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As a lifelong "mostly fingerpicker," I think it's interesting how so many of "us" who started more or less "folkie" as Knopfler got into fingerpickin' more than flatpickin'. That includes me, although I ain't in his pickin' class and he's MUCH younger than I am. (okay, only 4 years)

 

I think some of it comes down to what you were into. The "known to me" folkies at the time had plenty of flatpickers and kinda wannabe Maybelle Carter players, but... the fingerpickers had what I wanted. Ditto the Flamenco players and classical players and even the banjo players.

 

That Carter family scratch was pretty loud, but I remember thinking even then that it developed when there were no PA systems for barn dances and such.

 

But I also knew I'd almost always have some kind of amplification, so I'd stick mostly with that fingerpickin'.

 

So... yeah, now I have some big guitars, but frankly I'm more comfortable with something around the ES175 or classical guitar size. With AE...

 

BTW, I know I'll get laughed at for this one but... perhaps one of the cheapest and easiest ways to get into AE and forcing yourself to play gently is the Epiphone "beginner" $200 street package of a little amp and PR4e. Get it set up correctly and it sounds a bit "cigar boxy" like a lotta old pickers really sounded in the old days. Amplified? Heck, I've used one on stage for a cupla benefit kiddie concerts and it sounds fine - and if a kid stepped on it I wouldn't be seen as a normally grouchy old man weeping for a week as I would with a $5,000 Gibbie.

 

The reason I say it may be one of the best ways to retrain oneself is that it actually sounds pretty nice even acoustically if you're gentle and are using quite light strings like 9-42. I s'pose you could use silk 'n' steel. I use Zebra 9-42. Try to beat on it and it'll respond quite poorly. Play as if you were doing something lyrical...

 

m

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The thing with MK is he seems so humble.....but don't get confused by that - he is a MONSTER fingerpicker!

 

A couple of highlights in the fingerpickers I have seen:

 

Brownie McGee and lots and lots and lots of blues guys (most of the ones that came past) after that....Stefan Grossman recently

 

Went to see a band I had never heard of with a crowd that was going and I went for the ride - YES! were playing with Rick Wakeman doing his huge keyboard things and flashing lights and then every thing goes quiet and lights down and then lights up gently and Steve Howe is sitting on a stool playing "The Ancient". Words don't describe.

 

 

And then

 

Went to the Dire Straits concert and they all bounced along with the hits until, like Steve Howe I suppose, the lights and music dimmed and came up with Mark Knopfler playing "Romeo and Juliet" on his National Steel guitar - Magic! Again - words don't describe.

 

 

BluesKing777.

 

 

 

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I have never like DS. This is the first time I have ever heard him play and enjoyed it! maybe I need to get out more! LOL this was great though!

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