29 January 2012

Greatest Lead Guitar of All Time

This category (my last for those who are sick of it) has been the most difficult. So many worthy artists, and very hard to differentiate. So I've done something a little different: I have ONE winner, and TWO tiers below him. This means that I admit I can't distinguish the tiers within themselves, only tier one from tier 2.

Some will disagree, perhaps viscerally, with my selections (if anyone reads this at all). There'll be some "no way (tier one guy) is better than (tier two guy). There's also a fair few that aren't on my list at all. But I can't have 30 runners-up. So I made my cuts where I chose, you make yours where you like. So how did I decide? Not necessarily based on my own tastes, though that certainly factors in. Throughout this project, I've included people/bands that I don't particularly like, but I recognize the talent. Lead guitar in particular is not just about notes per second or even complexity; you have to make the instrument sing, cry, wail!

First, a few Honorable Mentions (also in no particular order, and only a few videos):
Phil Collen/Steve Clark
Chet Atkins
Roy Clark
Eddie Van Halen
Stevie Ray Vaughn
Angus Young
Ted Nugent
Dave Murry
Nancy Wilson
Melissa Etheridge
Eric Clapton
John Mayer
Jeff Cook
Duane Allman

Whichever one of these girls is playing lead guitar/Kerry Livgren

Whoever this is playing with Roxette. I searched and can't pin down who it is. Likely Christoffer Lundquist, but I'm not positive. Feel free to clue me in.

Second Tier Runners-up (any order)
Brad Paisley

Jimmy Page

Jeff Beck

First Tier Runners-up (any order)
Gary Rossington

David Gilmour

Randy Rhoads (I love how Ozzy scratches his head then looks at it at the 1:30 mark. Head & Shoulders, Oz?

Carlos Santana

BB King
Can't embed, but you gotta hear it!

Steve Vai

Winner, and Greatest Guitarist of All Time
Jimi Hendrix

Thanks for playing along at home, and good night!

20 January 2012

The Illusion of Community II

A brief update on my self-imposed research project. Comment below or here.

Thesis statement:

Although technology has created the potential for instant, worldwide exposure, and “connected” people in unprecedented ways and numbers, we are more isolated from each other than ever before.

1. The history of relationship

A. Social models of connectedness, primarily in Western culture

B. Western Culture on Steroids: American independence

C. Trivialize the important, emphasize the trivial

2. The Changing Nature of Relationship

A. The “one for all and all for one” era, 1920-1945

B. The “My Family” era, 1950-1965

C. The “Free yourself” era, 1965-1980

D. The “ME FIRST!” era, 1980-1990

E. The Expanding Community era, 1990-2000

F. The Rally Round the Good era, 2001-2003

G. The “Anybody But” era and beyond 2004-present

3. The changing Nature of Fame

A. Hollywood’s Golden Age

B. The Evolution of Self

C. Famous for being famous

D. Famous for being infamous

4. Oversharing and the elevation of the mundane

A. My dog went poop!

B. Long lost cousin Bernie

C. Crossing boundaries

D. The power of lemmings

E. The Power of Aww/vengeance of the mob

5. Kevin Bacon?!? Pfft! Who’s he?

A. Breadth equals depth

B. I am my number of “friends"

C. Do I know you?


E. Red sky morning, sailor, take warning


So what exactly is it I’m hoping to accomplish here? My style will be that of the typical college thesis in scope, size, and depth. But I’m not being graded, timed, or critiqued. I welcome your input, reaction, and comment. But I reserve the right to determine what arguments I find persuasive, and what I appraise to be a typed cow patty. Don’t both criticizing my style, spelling, grammar, or references. I won't be following any particular standard on citations. I’m done with the days of having to write in the third person (if you hadn’t noticed by now), and my spelling and grammar are fine. It’s my typing that sucks. I am free to write as I will, and although I will endeavor to provide a well-researched product, complete with dissenting opinions if I find them compelling, this is my paper. If you want a product of my opinion, read on. If you want yours, write yer own paper.