Every rock, blues guitar player dreams of going on tour, to stand before a huge crowd and play their hearts out.
But very few rock or blues guitar players,even have the confidence to get up before a room fill with 50 people let alone 20,000 screaming fans.
So how does a great rock, blues guitarist and singer perform,and what makes this greta guitarist tick?
And have you wondered how great rock, blues and jazz guitar players perform in concert year after year, with no fear.
These are question I will answer.
So please take notes.
When I was young I love to play rock,blues and jazz guitar,I even studied Classical guitar also. But I had a problem in school ....you see...I hated, to give oral reports in school.In other words I was to shy to do public speaking, so how was I ever to play my guitar and sing before a large crowd of people?
When I first started playing guitar a 13 years old, I knew even way back then, that I wanted the be well know as a guitarist, I studied everything, music notation, rock guitar tab,jazz scales for guitar, movable jazz and rock scale pattern boxes. I would work all summer doing odd jobs to raise money to buy rock guitar books and jazz guitar books,I listened to Chuck Berry on guitar, the Beach Boys,and finally started listening to George Benson play jazz guitar.This all before Stevie Ray Vaughan appeared on the rock,blues guitar scene.My frist taste of blues can after listening to George Benson playing jazz guitar. I then studied guitar in college and played in jazz bands, but my main love was still a rock, blues guitar sound, with great jazz leads mixed in, it was my own style, and I love it.
I was a young rock, blues guitarist , I really didn't care about the money, I loved the guitar and would play it for life even if I was the last person on the face of the earth, because it gave me great pleasure and joy.
But still in my heart, I knew I was scared to death to get up in front of a large crowd and sing and play my music.
As I grew into my music over the next few years, I ran Track in front of large crowds, but it really didn't teach me the confidence I needed, to play guitar in front of people.
Durning my college days I started playing in front of people, but I was nervous everytime I got up in front of a crowd.Sure I was a great guitar player, but I wanted to over come my fears.
It seemed impossible until one day, I learned a secret.
Before I learned my secret I use to think - Why get nervous? Why suffer the worry ? Why worry about things that could go wrong?..........ect....but you see I was telling myself not to worry and in doing so it was creating more stress
NOW MY SECRET - One day I woke up from a revealing dream I had and thought - I must refocused my thoughts - I told myself to go dead center in the very front of the stage, my reason was simple, there's no where to hide when you are there. At this point everything becomes totally clear to my reasoning. Either you play to your best, give it your all and never look back....or you're going to make a fool of yourself.
I decided to go for it, to take chances and risks on my guitar infront of a crowd,and play my heart out playing my hardest guitar styles ,that I would have noramlly reserved for my playing at home in hopes of one day playing before a large crowd, I think you rock,blues guitar folks all know what I mean - it's the guitar playing that you think you'll do down the road in a few years, but your not ready to play now because you don't want make a mistake. It's that kind of thinking that destroys guitarist,do you think a rock, blues guitarist like Stevie Ray Vaughan, would have been great had he done that?.....NO WAY !!....As Rock, Blues and Jazz guitar players ,playing professional, we need to trust our abilities. Why because, only the great guitar players ever risk it all,and if you do risk it all, you'll learn something awesome about yourself, that you can stand on stage with the best in the world if you have that kind of talent, you just have to become in tune with yourself and trust what God put in you.
And what if you crash and burn - don't worry about it, the crowd knows your a man who went for it. There will be another day soon, and you'll make it work. The real trick is this, once you master this, you can become a guitar super star !!
Yet I hope this all makes sense to you reading this - please understand me, there are many great guitar players living at home, but put them on a stage in front of a large crowd and they crack under pressure, then there's the guitar players who play real good under pressure as long as they don't risk it all. Then there's the 1 in a Million who learns to let go of the stress.
Anyways back to my story - after my dream, everything seem so clear to me.I knew what I had to do to play guitar at a higher level on stage.I had to become the master guitarist I was at home on stage. And never have a negitive thought.
But for me this was a defining moment....I was going to beat this monster and attack head on.....to play my guitar all out and to sing all out and I told my band what the plan was, I told them to hang on for dear life.
I was going to make it....or break it.....but my mind was made up.....all the way 1 hour concert at 100% full bore.... And it worked, I got so caught up in my music and was able to showcase my music at a much higher level.
Guess what happened , within a few short months I was on radio, I even had my own talk program on the air, I did concert after concert with no fear ever again.
That was many years ago I learned this, I have talked to a few other great guitar players and they all say the same thing, there comes a time, when you have to leave all your cares and worries far behind and you have to step on the stage, like you own it, like you are the master of guitar. And once you do, you finally learn to love it so much, that you never want to leave the stage. The stage then becomes home to you.....It is no longer stress but pure joy.
Today when I step on stage - I own that stage, and I feel as if the crowd is in my living room, they are my family and friends, even if I never met them before, I now can play guitar infront of 50,000 fans, or only 50 Fans, it doesn't matter. People ask me all the time how I play with no fear, how I joke with the audience and play to the crowd.
All I tell them is, I go the front of the stage, it is there I am my strongest, It is there I am one with my guitar, one with my fans and One with God.
Some how I know some of you , are wondering how to conquer this fear.
There is no better way that I know , than to tell you what I lived myself.
If it works for me....It can work for you.
Over the years My music has played on radio off and on for over 25 years. My new CD is starting to go places. My song Electric Son Rise , is played now and then on radio and has even been used several times as a theme song for radio programs and TV. Now another songs on my CD, such as, "Beyond the Clouds", is getting a lot of notice, and in the gospel world my song -." On Easter Morning", - has had tons of downloads and believe it or not, a top ringtone company sells it also. Not to mention all the online sales I get. I was shocked to hear that Churches want , ON Easter Morning to be used in Easter Plays and choirs across the country this year, it's amazing. Best of all a top music write wrote me an online leter he posted on his website, saying this - That - On Easter Morning is one of the greatest gospel songs ever written, but only he wish he could written a that song that beautifull himslef. It made me feel real good as a writer and a guitarist and singer.
Thanks GW Williams