Sunday, June 11, 2006

Don Ross Cannington Guitar Weekend Summer 2006 - Day 3 Sunday June 11th

Aww, it's the last day... We started kinda late today as the ridiculous stories over breakfast were too fun to stop. I kinda forgot to mention that one of the other guys from Ottawa here this weekend, Ron Weiss, and I met under funny circumstances (click on the link to take a guess how - great domain name by the way).
Suffice it to say that back in September 2005 I had enlisted his services with a procedure he is specially qualified to undertake and was in the middle of having it done when he happened to notice my gel finger nails and asked..

"Oh do you play the guitar?"
And I said "Why yes" as a puff of smoke rose up between us.
And he said "What style of music?" And I replied
"The Heavy Wood kind, you know, Don Ross, fingerstyle, alternate tunings.."
And he said something like "I love Don Ross, Robot Monster, great album!"
At which point I said.. "I just spent the weekend at his house.." (The last Cannington weekend, with Tony Macmanus)

At which point he carefully finished up what he was doing, uhh, retracted his instrument (not a guitar) and said in an excited voice..
"Get OUTTA here! Really?" And I explained the weekend seminars and he signed up on the website about 10 minutes later after checking his schedule. hehehehee. I love introducing people to the existance of these things.

Pretty funny. And for the record the procedure was totally painless and did what it was supposed to do! Thanks Ron! Great to see you again! I Highly recommend him!


Here's a pic of Andy and his signature guitar with the Converse running shoe fret indicators at 12 and 15. It's like "Ok, on measure 15, strum the harmonic at the red running shoe!". Don took the morning session and we did "Elevation", a great tune that really snuck up on me when I learned it 2 years ago. By the end of the first session everybody was playing it in unison (almost). Very cool. It has lots of interesting little bits to it and it is a piece you can actually master and feel good about when you do.

Then in the Q & A we did some really cool stuff. Someone asked about Robot Monster and Don played it at 1/4 speed on a regular acoustic (it can be DONE people! Although Frank L said as much, hehehehe, I figured it would only sound good on a Baritone, Look out!). Another neat bit I remember was the Michael 3x rolling Hammer-on pull-off chord intro. I got some footage of him doing that slow and I'm definitely gonna check that out later (I'll post a link to those bits of footage later). Andy went over his beautiful tune Rylynn (do yourself a favour and click on that link for a listen) whose melody is still in my noggin, as well as his tune Art of Motion . Pretty slick slapping and popping there. As well as Andy's version of Don's Tight Trite night tune.

This is probably the best of the three I've been too. Maybe because it was a small gathering (the first time he's done two in one year) and we got to monopolize them, like, A LOT! Jeez, it was just fun to sit around and hear them PLAY! I have a friend, Tripper, who doesn't really play the guitar a lot but I was thinking that he's love this, just the music in your living room aspect of it. Another thing is, I dunno how Andy plays like that with no fingernails. He has like, a big thumbnail, but the rest is all pads of the right hand fingers. I know one other Gobyfisher, Pat, who plays like that, man. I wish I could do that. The fake nails are a pain but it just doesn't sound right to me without them(I'll give it a try without again though).

Another funny thing was that Andy said a year ago he was considering coming up to Cannington like us, as a student dude and sit there right along with us and soak in the whole Don Ross thing. Then Don called him to get him down as a guest guitarist. WooHoo! He's a fan. I think he got a kick out of playing with Don up there.

And darn it, I didn't coax Brooke enough to play for us(grin). Man, you have to take advantage opf the great two for one talent deal you have with Brooke and Don. I would be quite happy if they played double bills with each other all the time but I think they want to keep that to a minimum for some reason. Man, anyone who would have a problem with that should have their head examined. I've only seen them play on the same bill twice... When's the Brooke Miller guitar weekend? A funny thing I heard she did the last time they shared a stage was to tell the audience when she was up that there was a special deal that night. Buy a Brooke Miller's CD, get a Don Ross one for free!!(grin - Don didn't like that because some people didn't quite 'get' that it was a joke- hehehe)

And, I owe her two bucks.. Oops!! I'll pay her back next time I see her play, which is hopefully soon!

And then it was over.... (sniff).

The trip back home was exciting. I managed to do the new Geocache in Cannington, on this little Island nature trail about 900 meters from Don's front door. Two hours later I almost got a speeding ticket doing 29k over the posted 80 limit (I stupidly thought I was in a highway 100km zone even though I'd been staring at 80's signs the whole way.). I had come down a hill and there was this huge dead Turkey Vulture or something lifelessly flapping in the middle of the road and I was trying to figure out the best way to traverse it without getting it's guts on my car(I ended up straddling it, and not that it mattered, swampy sock smell and all) when I saw the trooper out of the corner of my eye waving his arm like an NHL Ref signaling a penalty shot. I pulled over and reversed back to where he was. As I did that I flipped my GPS over to the trip screen and saw my max speed had hit 109. Since I thought I was in a 100 zone I was kinda puzzled why he would have pulled me over like that, but dang, down the road right in front of me is this 80 sign.. CRAP!!! TURN THAT SCREEN OFF!!!!! (Maybe his radar gun clocked me slower).

It didn't. The radar gun agreed. So I told him basically that I should know better and I wasn't paying enough attention. I showed him the GPS screen and how I thought I was just like 9 over in a 100 zone. Maybe it was the fact that the Max speed on my GPS and the speed he clocked me at was the fastest I had gone until that point, but he LET ME OFF WITH A WARNING THANK GOD! I was 29k over, but at 30k, it's like $300 (ouch). I drove a bit more carefully the rest of the way home, which probably helped me avoid that deer that ran in front of me an hour later.

At some point I turned off the road to do one last geocache and got the final surprise of the evening. An old mine full of water. It's frickn HUGE!!!! Check it OUT! Here's a Pano I took in autostitch.

A few hours from home I noticed this guy pulled over to the side of the road taking a picture of the sunset. So, I did the same.

Total kilometers = 779
Moving time = 11hrs 52 mins
Moving Ave 65.6kmph
Stopped 1:56 Min
Overal Ave 56.4kmph
Max speed 124kmph

Like everyone there at this kind of Groovy Guitar Disneyland, I think we all momentarily forget what we all do in real life and dream about playing the guitar to the extent these three do. And quitting the day job. If any of us were good enough. Some are!

But not me!

Woohoo! Until the next one!

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