A bit about myself. I have relative pitch. This is a step below perfect pitch. What relative pitch is. If I hear a note I automatically know the distance and pitch of every note. So unlike perfect pitch I have to hear a note first. I do know some pitches by memory. Yes this is fading with age. But I still have it. Really helped me years ago. Years before the internet, tabs and you tube. If I could hear it. Had the skills. I could play it.
I have some awesome playing CBGs that I’ve bought at our annual fest here in St. Louis MO. And I’ve played them hard. I have hundreds of hours of video of me playing both ideas and songs. Video myself so I can both hear and see what I’m doing. I make most of my music on them.
The off sound of a CBG is part of it’s raw charm. In your face don’t care almost punk attitude is the quality base for these instruments. Music doesn’t have to be perfect to be good.
I still have more standard guitars than I do CGBs. I’ve played for years. When I play them it’s like an old friend. My ears are happy.
After playing on a standard guitar playing on a CBG is rough. I’m not going to say is as bad as fingernails scraping on a chalkboard. But I really notice it. I guess I can justify my problem. I know other great guitar players. They notice too. I realize this problem would be salved if I played everything with a slide. But that wouldn’t work with the kind of music I make. I listen to videos both on this site and on the web. Love the off raw sound. But in my hands it doesn’t work. Relative pitch becomes my problem. Because it’s my problem. Not a problem with the instrument or the raw sounding awesome music people make with it. Think of it like hemorrhoids. Something I could have that’s not catchy. But still a personal problem. Still something I need to deal with.
The only answer I can come up with it to change what i’m playing on. So I plan on building a few CBGs. They will have standard necks with machined bridges. So I can still play CBG tunings and keep my head happy. Will my music be better. Nope. Will it be better than what a hand made CBG sounds like. Absolutely not. And there’s no way it’ll be better than any music on this site. But in my hands it will make my ears happy. You might call it my preparation H.
How will these new creations be CBGs? First and foremost no rules! I’ll still be making the bodies. Doing all the wiring. And even including the awesome raw sound of a piezo. The only real difference is the use of a store bought neck. I have six string spaces to choose from. I could have just three, just four, two sets of three, one set of four and a two string low bow, one set of four with a space and a diddley bow. And more. All on the same neck.
Because I can put more of myself into something I build I'n not going for the normal guitar look. Like my AutoRatic Cosmic Glider. Every CBG I make will stand out in a crowd.
So I guess this is more of a confession post. “Hello everyone. My name is Cause the rat. I have a problem. I love something I can never obtain. A music I’ve loved from the first time I heard it. A beautiful raw sound. An off key out of tune tapestry of pure rich joy. A rough beautiful music. A sound that transcends above classical standards. A beauty that flows seamlessly from so many. But fails in my hands.”
So I’ll play on my preparation H. And be jealous of the awesome raw sound that a real CBG makes. My music will still have the tuning of a CBG. But never obtain the true sound.
Your right about a lot of things you can do with it.
The six string guitar and how the audience looks at it reminds me about Kieth Richards of The Rolling Stones only using 5 strings. Everyone sees 6 and few knew He was only using 5.
When I was playing on my 6 string, I rarely used all 6. The 2 E strings got used the least, especially the high E, but people will see 6 and think 6.