Send Your Happy Thoughts

My father is going to have surgery today. Serious surgery. I am fully confident that everything will go well. It’s not routine, but it’s as close to routine as something this big can be. I am also scared shitless. I’m sending all of the red head vibes I have to offer and I’m hoping everyone else will send all their happy thoughts as well.

Amp Nerd Post

Okay… bear with me on this one. It’s going to be a guitar amp nerd thing.

I’ve been running two amps together for most of the last year and it’s awesome. I’m thinking about changing things though. Why? I don’t know, leave me alone. What I want to do is play through my Fender Deluxe Reverb, but that’s still at the band’s rehearsal space. It’s been there for 13 months. Missing me. My Fender Bassbreaker 18/30 is here though, and that’s sort of a Deluxe Reverb just with the wrong tubes (at least that’s how Fender sort of described it). Unfortunately, when I was using that amp a year ago it was too loud and my family complained. Is there a way that I can get around that now?

My first thought was to get an attenuator. I have one for my Deluxe. I place it between the amp and the built in speaker. There’s a 1/4 inch cable that standardly connects the speaker to the amp so I can just use that. The 18/30 can’t do that for a bunch of reasons. First, it’s a closed cabinet so I would have to take it apart to get to the plug and I ain’t doin’ that. Second, it’s not a plug, it’s hardwired… at least as far as I can tell it is. Again, I ain’t takin’ it apart. Third, where the Deluxe has one speaker, the 18/30 has two. What does that mean? Would I have to get two attenuators?

I think I still have options though. First, let’s look at what we’re dealing with:

I do have an extension cabinet. It’s one 12 inch speaker. It’s currently plugged into the little Vox MV30 which is plugged into the electric keyboard in the living room. Harry hasn’t used it in ages though, he usually wears headphones when he practices. I have an impedance select so I should be able to use it without worry. I think it’s eight ohms but it should say on the back of the cab. Now if I use the Main Speaker output it will bypass the two built in speakers. What does that mean for volume? Will going from two speakers to one speaker give me the volume reduction I need? I don’t think so. It might be a little lower volume but it will probably just mean the speaker will distort at a lower volume than the combo speakers do. I don’t know. I’ve never done this.

Assuming the Main Speaker into my 1×12 cab works, and assuming it doesn’t reduce the volume the way I need, I should be able to get a cheap attenuator, similar to the one I bought for my Deluxe. I bought it on Reverb.com from a guy in Tyngsboro, MA who builds them (I think) in his house. Unfortunately I don’t remember the name of the seller or the company. So… I bet I can find it on my Reverb history. It’s the only thing I ever bought there. If that fails then I am positive I have a picture of it somewhere. Give me a minute…

There it is! Carl’s Custom Guitars Speaker Soak. He makes them at different resistance levels. I’d have to get the right one.

So there you have it. The next recording project, whenever or whatever that may be, might be a one amp setup. Stay tuned.

Why Can’t I Sleep

Four out of the last five nights I’ve had epically bad sleep. I’m talking pre-CPAP therapy level bad sleep. Over the last week the nights that weren’t legendarily bad still weren’t good.

Why can’t I sleep anymore? Worry and stress and guilt are surely part of it, but why is it so much worse now than it was a couple of weeks ago? Nothing has changed.

My watch tells me that last night I got 3:45. How am I even alive anymore? What the hell, bro?

Wind

It is so windy outside that it feels like nature is trying to huff and puff and blow our house down. It’s howling loud enough to almost keep me from falling asleep. Almost.

G’night, big bad wolf.

Light Up the Falls

This is a photo of the Spicket Falls dam in Methuen.

2010-02-28 - spicket flood level 015

This is a really terrible picture of Niagara Falls with some of the colored night lights turned on.

DSC_0314

The two things have nothing in common other than they show water falling off a cliff. In New York/Ontario it’s natural. In Methuen it’s man made. That isn’t relevant though.

The city has announced an art project where they are going to install colored lights that local artists will be able to use to create light shows on the water falling over the edge of the Spicket Falls dam. It’s going to open for a test run some time in the fall, and then open for real in the spring of 2022. The water flow is only that high during the rainiest times of year so I don’t think this will be a year round thing… but it is cool.

Covid-19 notwithstanding, Robbie is going to bring his camera. Bank on it.

Quarantine Project Free

It’s weird. Now that RPM is over I don’t have any projects planned. I don’t think I’ll do another album in a month. I think I’m burned out on that for now. Well… for today at least. As Traffic once said, Who Knows What Tomorrow May Bring?

I still have a couple of songs to finish on the latest round of re-recordings. I think I have three that still need a guitar part and some mixing. I also thought about remixing the second round of re-recordings. I decided recently that I did something to mess up the guitar sounds and I should fix it. The downside of this is that I will always be able to find something wrong and I will always want to go back and fix it. Nothing is ever finished.

Outside of that? Nothing, really. Maybe I’ll find a guitar teacher on the youtubes and actually try and learn something instead of just yankin’ my own musical chain. Hell, I should have started that last March. After a year I might be almost tolerably not terrible.

Really though, the only thing on my agenda going forward is getting the damn vaccine. Everyone in my house needs it and we all need it right now. I’m tired of this crap.

A Pretty Good Sunday

Things that were good today, not in order of importance:

  • I finished this year’s RPM Challenge
  • The Bruins beat the Rangers
  • We got a new waffle iron and it made some really good waffles.
  • Also in food news, Jen made a roast tonight and it was scary how good it was.
  • The Red Sox played their first Sprint training game. Sure, they lost to the Twinkies, but the important thing is that they played.
  • The Walking Dead came back.
  • My father, who went into the hospital on January 29th, came home. I mean, he’s going back in on Wednesday but the point is he finally came home. My father went home today!