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Tuesday, May 10, 2011


Since the creation of this blog in September 2010, it has been rewarding for my personal growth in many aspects. In particular the craftsmanship relating to guitar restoration has been challenged and augmented repeatedly during this short journey from 0 to 10,000 visits. This posting contains my thoughts and revelations that are derived from this journey.

Firstly, I should pay tribute to guitar4christ, a members' drive online forum. Joining this online forum has moved me to step forward in providing my services. They have played an important role in marrying the guitar players onto a common platform in creating learning and sharing opportunities. Before that, I have been volunteering my services at my friends who play guitars, and nothing more. With some pushes and encouragements from those friends who have benefitted from my help, I made the decision to engage the guitar community through my guitar services.

Knows the market, wins the battle. As such I did some facts finding that allowed me to appreciate the desires of the local acoustic guitar players, a.k.a. consumers. Along with the consumers’ taste, I have learned the strengths and weaknesses of these existing guitar restorers operating within the local guitar community. The sentiments for these local guitar restorers are not homogeneous; instead there are great disparities when viewed from various aspects like, prices, workmanship, turnaround time, attention to details, customer services, and the highly subjective likableness. Possessing the knowledge helped me in pitching the angle of entry into the market.

The contrast between a restored and tarnished tuner knob

More than a decade ago when I started learning guitar, I was not even aware where to seek help when my guitar was in trouble. Today, the many guitar restorers are marketing their services through internet and reaching them has never been easier. The standards of restorations have definitely increased not only through time, very likely through the opened competition among the providers as made possible by the internet.

I was aware of my interest in restoring stuffs beyond just guitars since young. Meddling with spoiled items was as exciting as playing with my Darth Vader action figure. As I grew, so has my knowledge for guitars. The curiosity to restore my own guitars was overwhelming. It was a matter of time before a series of adjustments were made on my second acoustic guitar. There were both successes and failures. Through years of playing guitars, I have also experimented repeatedly on all my guitars in various aspects. All the outcomes have contributed to the craftsmanship I have obtained today. The progress has been gradual and I have not expected my work to yield any monetary rewards from other guitar players.

One of the many radical experiments ...

It wasn’t about guitar restoration only. There were many benefits beyond my expectations. Many clients have turned into my friends. There were great guitar players who I have met. Watching these great players expressing themselves through guitar tunes in close range was simply elating. Some possessed great knowledge about guitars and I have learned tremendously through conversations. The beginners form the most impressionable group; they are so eager and curious to learn. Certain critical customers went no holds barred when offering their comments on my work, which has indirectly augmented my level of craftsmanship. As the blog resides in the open domain, it has invited its fair share of criticisms too. It was indeed interesting to manage these external fires. One of the greatest perks is the chance to play many guitars, regardless they are top-notched pieces or budget line guitars I have enjoyed playing them thoroughly.

Very few guitars are build with such fine craftsmanship
like the Yamaha LL36. It was a pleasure to play it.

There were numerous literatures written about guitars, especially in the technical aspects. As such, it was tricky to determine the appropriate angle to pitch the blog content. Well, certain clichés weren’t avoidable; yes I have included them in the blog on the basis of functional requirement. The tricky part remains; how to benefit the readers? Apart from showcasing efficiency and fine craftsmanship on this blog, I hope to share with the readers who presumably are guitar players too, certain implicit perspectives about guitars and the interest in learning to play it. From my lens, playing guitars isn’t just a mere past time activity. There lies tacitly tremendous amount of insights that will help us in personal growth in the form character building. I have met youth who are disoriented with lives but have found their anchors and foundation in learning to play guitars. There are full-grown adults who have found peace through playing guitars in the midst of this ultra paced society. The patience to attain success in playing guitars is analogous to building a successful life, shared by some of my clients. Most profoundly, during my quest to be a better guitar player, I have discovered the essence of creating music from reading interviews publications of many accomplished players, i.e. playing the right note, at the right moment and with the right touch. How different is life from creating music? I personally saw many close connections that have opened my sights.

Play only what is good for the tune

Not forgetting the supporters and friends who have helped me in one way or the other, regardless indirectly or directly. The blog exists because it serves your interest. It was certainly humbling and fulfilling to create something useful for the community. Guitaring Passionately greatly appreciates you and is deeply gratified by your active responses. It will continue to change to adapt to your needs.

Above all, there is God. In year 2009, I was still meddling with my guitars and things took a turn. It was like a tipping point for me. Things about guitars restorations have became vividly clear to me. The reasons that account for aesthetic, feel and tonal qualities were readily comprehensible and crafting guitar parts were never been more interesting and enjoyable. It has reached a point that I felt ready to benefit the community. I could not determine any rhyme or reason for the sudden growth in interest and ability except to attribute to God's blessings being bestowed onto me.

Still honing by God's grace

Last but not least; “And I have filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, and in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship.” - Exodus 31-3.

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