Music gear thread- women and NB only (also space for people to talk about how they got put off learning guitar etc or to ask questions)

Music equipment discussion spaces are generally a horrible competitive bro pit, especially those dominated by middle aged blues dentists with too much disposable income. (Who sneer at £500 guitars as cheap little toys, of course you need the £2k model).

Recently I got invited to a private FB group for talking about weird guitars, and it’s such a revelation. Literally the first time ever I have felt comfortable in those spaces, mainly because it’s a bunch of working musicians many of whom I know/have put on gigs for, there’s plenty of people who don’t fit the straight white cis male category and the moderator is firm about not allowing any chauvinist nonsense. It was a revelation. A couple of dude bros threw tantrums about not having their outdated sexist nonsense tolerated, and went off on one about how they were “essential” to the group, and then were chucked out! You don’t know how rare this is in that kind of group if you haven’t experienced it.

So either:

  1. Let’s talk about your stuff- what do you use, what do you like, what would you like to get?

  2. Let’s talk about the factors that steered you away from learning the guitar drums etc when you really wanted to

(Cis men, you sit and watch and listen in this one)

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I bought an acoustic guitar during my 2nd year at university determined to come out with a skill other than wasting money on food and sleeping 2hrs in 2 days and being okay, but it never happened. Still have it somewhere, its 12 years old with rusty strings. Think what put me off learning is laziness more than anything, wish I tried harder

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So for example- the first electric guitar I got. This silver Jagmaster in 2002 when I was 17. A very generous gift for a 17 year old. It’s a weird mishmash of the Jaguar, and Jazzmaster but with humbuckers and an expensive 25.5" neck clearly left over from a much more expensive range- they didn’t make these for very long. (When I got an annoying buzz repaired last year the guy said it was kind of a frankenstein guitar made up of leftover parts from more expensive ranges, which I’m pretty happy with).

When I got it, I was talking to my friend in the pub, all happy, and some slightly older guy who didn’t even know me barged in to the conversation and started shaming me for not having a vintage Jaguar from the 60s or 70s that would have cost a grand at the time. We didn’t even live in a rich area! But he just wanted to feel important that he put a 17 year old girl in her place.

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Also if anyone has any questions about music equipment and doesn’t want to be made to feel silly for asking or not knowing things, here is the place to ask.

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Yeah where did that thing of being pushed towards the bass come from? You’d better look sexy while doing it or else too.

I had a bass before that when I was about 14 or so, it’s under the bed in a bag still, I just never felt strongly about it.

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This is cool.

I had some guitar lessons at school when I was 13/14 but they were a bit of a logistics nightmare so didn’t carry on long. I can play barre chords because my hands are too small and that was always limiting. I have a shit blue acoustic guitar (made by Aria, whoever they are) and an Epiphone ES335 Dot for my electric. I haven’t really played since I acquired chronic migraine because it seems to be bad for that :(. Would quite like to get them out again and see if that is still a problem. Acoustic needs restringing though and that intimidates me.

My favourite instrument is my little compact harmonium, which is sadly prisoner in a cupboard rn and repeated asks for it to be freed have been forgotten/ignored by the person who could get it out for me. I love it so much because I was always shit at coordinating right and left hand with piano and it is good only having one hand on the keys while the other is on the bellows making all the character of the sound by altering the airflow.

Wish I still had a laptop I could record and sequence on because I want to make songs combining harmonium and other very organic sounds with shitty midi melodies and drums. Got really clear ideas bit no way to do it :frowning:

Wish so much I had access to a piano because I find them to be so wonderful from a multisensory perspective, would be an awesome sort of therapy to deal with autistic overload for me.

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You can just substitute a powerchord for a barre chord a lot of the time, and if you have small hands you can skip the middle finger

So bottom 3 strings for a F powerchord for example:
D-3 little finger
A-3 third finger
E-1 first finger
(Or you can stretch and use the first 3 fingers). You’ll keep more force in your hand if you keep the thumb on the back of the neck rather than the top too.

And just slide that up and down (E is 0-2-2). E string frets run 0 E, 1F, 2F#, 3G, 4G#, 5A 6Bb 7B 8C 9C#

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Oh yeah, always forget power chords. Though I do miss those high strings

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you could always look at open tunings like DADFAD (D minor) or DADF#AD (D major) where you can just hold a finger along to change the chord (and give lots of space for picking too)

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Someone gave me a guitar because I let him live in my cupboard for a few months (it was a big cupboard) and I always intended to learn but I got really confused about the left hand/right hand thing. I’m mostly right handed but to me it felt more comfortable to play left handed, everyone told me that was wrong and I never got past it, playing right handed feels very uncomfortable to me, like an extra layer of difficulty. I’d quite like to try again at some point as I’m more patient now. This might be a stupid question, but can you just restring a guitar so it’s left handed?

You can and plenty have, but it might feel unbalanced or go out of tune easier. Depends on the guitar really, but of course the lower strings are much thicker than the upper strings, and exert different pressure.

Oh OK, I might give it a try. Are there actual left handed guitars then, to avoid that problem?

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This is interesting as well- this is a music forum, and there are plenty of male members who make their own music and put stuff out and talk about gear, but there seems to be a real lack of active female musicians here?

There’s not a balance in live music for sure yet, but it’s not THIS disparate. Where did they go, why didn’t they join?

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Yep, Fender esp make quite a few.

Oh cool. I did not know that!

Oh yeah, I’m left-handed but learnt right. Felt ok to me, but with keyboard instruments I always wish the high/low went the other way around.

Are there any Female/NB members here that really wanted to learn and get involved with making music when they were younger (or now!) but felt there were things stopping them?

What were those factors?

I always wanted to be in a band but aside from playing a couple of gigs in am expanded line up of my friends’ band when I briefly lived in Manchester I never really got the chance because I never know many people and never anyone I lived close enough to.

Like I said in another post, I would really like to work on some songs but I don’t have the technology to do what I want.

Are you on a tablet or something these days? There’s also music making possibilities with those

I do have a tablet, but I haven’t found anything that works for me on there yet (admittedly only tried free software or some free trials). Midi input especially and anything else fiddly is difficult to do without it getting frustrating because it is difficult on a touchscreen with any accuracy. I don’t know if I could get a little midi controller that would work with it, but even then as I am a terrible player anything I input like that would need a whole lot of editing.

I guess it is part laziness, the learning/relearning curve is so steep especially trying to do it on a touchscreen. I just need an ancient version of cubase like I had in my music tech A level :sob:

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