Research and surveys say that glossophobia, more commonly known as the fear of public speaking, ranks as the #1 phobia ahead of death, spiders, heights and dozens of other common fears. The researchers obviously havent polled a lot of musicians because nothing strikes fear in the heart of a practicing guitar player more than jumping up on the stage and performing at their local blues jam. A quick Google will reveal hundreds of books, courses and seminars for conquering the fear of public speaking but youll find very little that prepares you or helps you overcome the fear of participating in a public blues jam. And thats precisely why we asked Jeff Scheetz to research and author The Blues Jam Survival Guide for TrueFire members and students.
Everyone knows that Robert Johnson really didn’t sell his soul to the Prince of Darkness at the crossroads of Highways 61 and 49 in Clarksdale. Silly urban myth. Everyone knows that the devil always hangs close to a river and there’s no river anywhere near those crossroads. It was the crossroads of Highway 8 and Highway 1 in Rosedale where Johnson cashed in his soul for killer blues guitar chops. Ask Son House or check a map. But hold on… before you go rushing down there to do your own deal, Jeff McErlain’s got a much better proposition…
If you’re a wilderness hiker, knowing how to make fire without matches is an essential survival skill. The 9 most popular methods include flints, rocks, magnifying glasses and rubbing sticks together. Our favorite method? Rub a chocolate bar on the bottom of a soda can to polish it into a sun-reflecting parabolic mirror.
Swing Blues encompasses a variety of genres from the jazzy influenced Jump and West Coast styles to the Western Swing and Rockabilly styles of the 40’s, 50s and 60’s. Guitarists like T-Bone walker, Bill Jennings, Tiny Grimes, Duke Robillard, Hollywood Fats and Charlie Christian are widely acknowledged for establishing the role of the guitar in this exciting and still very popular musical genre.