Imagine you are the insect that detected this wonderful flower – that’s the point where the music starts. See where it’s going to take you…

guitar & gear: Epiphone Les Paul Custom, Vox AC 50, Gerd Schulte Phaser

obsessive modification

How I sanded and modified a guitar I had disliked for 18 years.

why this dusty kind of work rescued my soul

Did I ever like the color gray? I can’t remember I have… but owning this guitar for nearly two decades I have repressed the notion from the beginning.

Though – now that it’s past recovery… I guess it looks better than in real life here. Must be the camera…

Surprise! Underneath the gray appears a layer of blue. But it had been perfectly hidden. At this stage at least 8 layers of paint have already been removed.

First glimpses of wood

Nothing but wood left. And it looks nice, except for the dark primer.

No primer left

Painted anew. Few strats look like that.

Electronic upgrade kit installed – now waiting for new pickups…

cymbals and guitar


These instruments are not played exactly the way they normally are.

But, hey, this is Psychedelic Zen Guitar, and there has been an intention to show the madness in normality here as well as the normality in madness right from the start…

There are four Garys here, playing different instruments like crazy, and maybe they are…

(I’ve been doing experiments like this since I was around 15 years old – for more than three decades now! I hope I have improved in musical insanity since then…)

The pictures show cymbals in my friend Markus’ drum studio.

guitar& gear: ’71 Ibanez SG, Vox ToneLab SE, Tube Reverb, cymbals, Gibson EB-3 bass played with violin bow

Ismael (3)


After a long time interruption this is the third and last installment of my little vernissage of Ismael Kamara’s paintings. This guitar looks to me like a freshly opened bottle of champagne!

At the end of the short piece of music here you hear sort of an echo. This was done by simply omitting the two main tracks of the recording. (I always have three tracks: two different microphones, and reverb on a separate track to make it easy to allot the proper amount of this effect).

Another guitar picture Ismael painted in collaboration with his son Salif was shown in lydian.

guitar & gear: ’67 Stratocaster, Vox AC 50, BSM treblebooster, tube reverb

resuming work

Finally, vacations are over. During the last six weeks, in opposition to my plans motivation went down, not up – mostly due to a systematic arrangement of obstacles I’m still unable to comprehend. It went on like this even after I had decided to go with the flow, or rather to give in to the non-flow…

I still am without my computer (it’s in repair for the third time now), and I cannot accept the substitute as a working tool. Psychologically. I really don’t feel like using computers these days (sulk…). Some will have noticed, and I’m really sorry for that. All I can say is: it’s not personal. And sorry again. Besides, I’m still waiting for a replacement of the ultimate guitar amplifier…

The weather has been depressing, too, so what else was left for me to do than to make up a new project – one that’s completely palpable and non-virtual? After I had returned the old Stratocaster guitar I remembered I had my own Strat! Only I didn’t like the color, the finish and the sound. I remembered I had tuned and changed some other guitars, too, and so I decided to sand it. And more. Sanding took three entire days – my lungs can tell. I painted the body anew. I ordered a new set of pickups; I changed some other electronic parts and so on. Now I have to wait for things I ordered, but it’s a different kind of waiting – it’s exciting! My ambition is to make it a completely different and completely personal instrument. And I’m sure that will work, after my thoughts have been circling around this project for weeks now.

What else? Susanne and I have been to Paris, and I shot some strange photos, some of them like the ones you are used to see here. These will be published soon, albeit without music.

And I concentrated on my son. I really love him, and I noticed he needs more attention and more interplay. We had a great time together during the past weeks. Except for the twosome Paris days.

Thomas, the great lender, left me another precious item as a compensation for the old Stratocaster he took home: an original Vox AC 30 amplifier, built in 1967, simply a legend. It’s also a great consolation these days going down to the basement (it’s too loud to be played in my regular music room) and playing electric guitar until my ears fall off… Again, I’d like to thank Thomas!

I still haven’t given up on my plans to record some new material, and as I’m in front of a computer now, this may be an encouraging sign. Today our students will return. Paradoxically, this could mean more time for creative work! See you these days…

bye, bye Stratocaster (2)


In the first installment I didn’t mention how inspiring the old Stratocaster has been for my photo-shooting . If you like, take a look again at the edge of its body in “volcanology”. Or how it matches the Vox AC 50. Or as a colorful vision in a dream.
Since there are quite a few photos remaining, and some more recordings, too, I add a second installment here. Maybe even a third will follow. I know I stylized and exaggerated a little bit, but how could one handle and “digest” such an experience without doing so? An experience you are lucky to get once in a lifetime…