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Giving Your Gear a Facelift

Zack Messick from Re-Education CampContributed by Zack Messick of Re-Education Camp. Their album Psyop’s Boombox is available on iTunes.

Every musician remembers their first instrument. Some got it for a birthday, others for Christmas, or maybe it was purchased with money save up from a summer job. No matter how the instrument came to be owned, it holds a special place in the heart of the owner.

I remember my first bass. It was Christmas, and I was 12. After we had all opened our presents, there was a note that led me to the closet. When I opened the door, there was a brand new Squier P-Bass in cherry red with a white pickguard. It was beautiful.

The trouble is, that a lot of times a starter instrument is cheaper and lower quality. As a musician progresses, sometime they need more versatility or a different sound. Unfortunately, this often means that the first instrument gets traded in, or left forgotten in a closet.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. My first P-bass is still my primary instrument. Now it is nothing like it was when I first got it. In fact, the only thing still original about that bass is the body itself. But it’s soul is still there. Continue reading Giving Your Gear a Facelift

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The Music of Politics

Contributed by Zack Messick of Re-Education Camp. Their album Psyop’s Boombox is available on iTunes.

PoliticsIt’s getting to be that time again. The days are starting to get longer, the air warmer and life starts to emerge. No, I’m not talking about spring. I’m talking about election season. The candidates spring up in mass numbers, spend all day going from place to place, spitting out their own brands of hot air.

In all seriousness, it really is a beautiful time. Its a time when Americans can come together and cast their votes to decide who will be their next President, Senator, Representative or represent many other local offices. But regardless of which level of government the political race is on, there is one thing that you will almost certainly find…

Music.

Almost every campaign will use a song as it’s anthem. A song that all of it’s supporters can rally behind. It is something that will get the crowd excited, and make them hopeful for what their candidate may bring, if elected. There are the patriotic songs like “This Land is Your Land” by Woody Guthrie. Michael Dukakis used “America” by Neil Diamond. Ronald Reagan famously used “Born in the USA” by Bruce Springsteen, even though the theme of the song is about the struggles of a Vietnam War vet. You will also hear the songs about standing up and making a change. George W. Bush used “I Won’t Back Down” by Tom Petty. “We’re Not Gonna Take It” by Twisted Sister and “Right Now” by Van Halen seem to be used by at least one candidate in each election cycle.

Continue reading The Music of Politics