Hi, My Name Is Tim and I’m a Guitar Guy. (Hi, Tim)
While reading this, can you queue up The Scorpions’ Wind of Change? I’m assuming all Live2Play readers are just like me and have this track in their “Guilty Pleasures” playlist. (And if you don’t, you can listen on YouTube HERE.
So here we find ourselves delving into a new issue of Live2Play, and yes, change is upon us. The only constant at L2P is that everything changes on a monthly basis—actually sometimes it feels like a daily basis. We justify it by saying that we’re forward-thinking. And while behind the scenes it is generally little more than organized chaos, we hope that it pays off for you, the reader, the people we work so hard to bring great content to.
With our latest change, I find myself here, in the driver's seat as a new editor of Live2Play. For those of you who have followed us over the years, you may recognized my signature “GuitarGuy” Tim, which is a moniker that I picked up in the 8th grade. For those of you less familiar with me, or with my content here, I hope you’ll indulge me for a few minutes as I introduce myself.
To begin, I dreamt (still dream) about becoming a rock star when I grow up. (Married, two kids, still not grown up. Ask my wife…) My passion for music started somewhere around 12 years old, when I was more or less simultaneously introduced to The Beatles and Weezer. Through most of high school and on into college, I played in several different bands, dreaming that one day one of my projects would get noticed. While I have always prided myself in my guitar playing skills, my songwriting skills left much to be desired. This realization led me to the recording studio where I worked for several years.
After spending far too many hours in a dark studio recording horrible radio spots, I changed my course and went into the world of advertising and marketing. For the first several years of my career, I left music behind. But as I’m sure you well know, once you have rock and roll in your blood, it’s a permanent part of you. Consequently, 5+ years into my career and about a year into graduate school, I started a blog about my opinions on music. Life was busy and stressful, and writing about music became a release for me. Better yet, I started to develop somewhat of a following. It was right around this time that I met Rev. Bill, the evil genius (or possibly psychopath) behind the publication you’re currently reading.
From the get go, I loved the philosophy behind Live2Play. Instead of looking for polished journalists who could write sterile reviews and blogs, L2P was out recruiting gigging musicians and studio engineers. Sure, sometimes their grammar would make English teachers cringe, but their thoughts and opinions, as unorthodox and they may have been, were authentic. As unconventional as it may be, L2P has continued to thrive when others have failed because the content is genuine and has meaning to its readers.
While the publications philosophy seems a bit chaotic, it actually falls right in line with the music industry and the spirit of rock and roll. One of my favorite rivalries in music history took place between Brian Wilson and Paul McCartney. In the mid-1960’s they were continually trying to outdo each other. Instead of following the safe path, they threw conventional wisdom out the window and created masterpieces like Pet Sounds and Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. But isn’t that how all of the music greats have immortalized themselves, by going against the grain and doing what they wanted to do? Music has never been about following the crowd, it has always been molded and shaped by out-of-the-box thinkers.
If there’s one thing I want to accomplish at Live2Play, it is to continue to produce authentic content. That is what has set us apart and it is what will continue to set us apart. As you read through this month’s blogs and reviews, I want you to know that they were written by individuals who are out there on the front lines. Individuals who play music for the love of playing.
Please know, I’m always open to suggestions on how to improve our content, and I’m always open to new column ideas. If there is a blog topic that you’d like to see covered, please send me an email, or better yet, go write the blog and send it my way. After all, 7 years ago, that’s exactly what I did and somehow that blog post led me through a course of gear reviews, artist interviews, NAMM coverage, and now an editor's chair…
Until next time, keep rocking!-
”GuitarGuy” Tim Hemingway