Archive for November, 2009

Refine Your Music Library

Monday, November 30th, 2009

I’m an engineer by nature.  We love equations and efficiency and numbers and stuff like that.  So lets take an engineer’s perspective look into your music library.  Assume Q is the quality coefficient of your music library, L is the number of songs you like, and N is the number of songs in your music library.


The greater Q is, the greater the quality of the song library.

There are two ways of improving Q (Quality of your music library).  First is to increase L (Liked songs), and second is decreasing N (# of songs in library) that is not L.

Increase L

This is easy for most people, and pretty much self explanatory – Add songs you like to your library.  Here are some places that might help you find new music:



Internet Radio – choose an artist or song, and Pandora will play similar music



Like Pandora, but with a community



Interactive WebRadio – choose between multiple genres and moods to play music you like

You can also use the Genius function in iTunes, but I’m not very familiar with this.

Decrease N which is not L

This is a step which I think many people don’t do, and probably haven’t ever thought about doing it.  I think you’ll agree what a great benefit it can have on your hard drive and iPod.

Seriously man, you have how many DAYS of music on your computer?  Nobody cares!  Yeah, maybe I’m impressed by the sheer amount of GB your music library has accumulated over the years, but how much of those 33.68 GB is good music?  The only way to decrease the bad songs in your library is to delete them.

As a general rule, when playing my library on shuffle – I delete songs that I skip more than once.

Excommunicate these sound leeches from your life forever.  They’re taking up time and concentration that could be focused on listening to music you actually like.

“But I like all of my music!” you say.    – – – – – – – – – – – – – –     Unabashed Lies!  If your library is larger than a thirteen year old’s, and you’ve never deleted anything, then I can guarantee you still have music you don’t like and would be glad to get rid of.  Bite the bullet, and delete.

Think of your library like you would a brick of gold.  Would you want a bunch of impurities messing up the quality of your gold?  No!  You’d take out all the extra junk so that your gold would be beautiful.  Make your library shine like gold.

Wow, this post grew a lot longer than I planned.  Anyway, thanks for reading. Until next time,

Happy Listening!


Mr. Fastfinger releases a debut album, explodes modes in the face, blogs, and gives us a sweet song to learn

Friday, November 27th, 2009

Mr Fastfinger

I recently Stumbled Upon a very righteous set of websites created by a Finland-man who has created an awesome little character named Mr. Fastfinger.  I started out my tour of his sites by downloading the free single “Wax On Wax Off” from his new album, and I was completely blown away.  Not only is the song redonk, but he gives us the full tab (complete with solos transcribed, chords, and modal notation!) and the backing track to go with it!  I honestly can’t think of a funner way to learn the guitar.  I’ve been practicing the song for a few days, but the sweep picking is still busting my chops.  This guy is fast.

After checking out the free song, I suggest moving on further into to check out Mr. Fastfinger’s modal journey (on a magic carpet no less) through Tilulitu Land, the desert island he lives on.  Mika Tyyska, the creator/alter ego of Mr. FF, has created this really fun game to help us learn the modes.  I ended up playing the game for like an hour, and completely forgot to get my guitar out and try the example licks.  Almost counterproductive in a way ………… but it sure was fun.

I didn’t realize it at first, but Mika and I seem to share a love of Japan – and Mr. Fastfinger can speak Japanese!



If you can’t speak Japanese, go ahead and click here for the English version of the game.

After getting your chops shredded by Mr. Fastfinger’s shred show, move along to his blog where you can find news about  the man/cartoon himself and most importantly – guitar lessons with descriptive commentary and real audio examples.  Sometimes he even posts examples from his own album!

Go here for Mr. FF’s blog.

Last but not least is his debut album ~~~ — <<<  “The Way of the Exploding Guitar” >>> — ~~~ which instantly conjures up images of Steve Vai and other experimental/progressive guitar artists.  You can easily tell Mika has his own personal style though, and isn’t afraid to play the slow and melodic (even though his name is Mr. Fastfinger).  With a combination of creative licks, speedy solos, modal experimentation, and some very ingenious guitar sounds, his album is a success in my books and definitely worth checking out.

Mika hints of another instructional series coming out, and maybe another album soon.  So until next time, keep shredding Mr. Fastfinger –  I’m eagerly awaiting your next project!