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Music, Creativity and the Strumstick (Blog)

On To Mars - A Song

On To Mars - A Song

by Robert McNally April 09, 2020

I am writing this blog post as an example of how the Strumstick can add a delightful color to recordings of other instruments. For me, the Strumstick parts in the song echo a sense of our earliest musical instruments as we expanded from Africa across the continents; from floating logs to clipper ships to sleek jets and rockets to the stars. 

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Designing a New Bridge

Designing a New Bridge

by Robert McNally October 12, 2017 16 Comments

I have wanted to design a bridge for the Strumstick (the little piece that holds the strings up over the soundboard) with more style to to it. Here I'll describe the process by which we arrived at a new bridge design that improves the sound of the instrument, looks really great with the Strumstick shape and is cost effective too.

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Grand Tour

Grand Tour

by Robert McNally September 13, 2017 10 Comments

In the spring of 2017, I had been accepted to a whole string of excellent shows across the country, a Grand Tour if you will. The shows were from April to July and this is the story of that tour.

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What About All Those Soundholes??

What About All Those Soundholes??

by Robert McNally January 29, 2017 6 Comments

If you ask people what the soundhole is for on a guitar (or a Strumstick), most people will say, "to let the sound out". A search of the web will yield answers like: "letting the vibrations from the strings fall into the body" to " spreading the soundwaves" and "it acts like a speaker". All those answers, while technically incorrect, do dance around what people's experience suggests to them. You could say they are poetic answers. But what is really going on?

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Making a Valentine Song for your Sweetie!

Making a Valentine Song for your Sweetie!

by Robert McNally January 25, 2017 3 Comments

There are few things more heart-warming and romantic than making a song for someone you love. Music is evocative, intangible, and a little risky, just like love is. In this article, we are going to show you how you can make sweet little melodies, a musical treat for someone you love. 

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8 Ideas that Ensure Succeeding on Guitar

8 Ideas that Ensure Succeeding on Guitar

by Robert McNally January 10, 2017 1 Comment

8 Steps for Learning Guitar that Ensure Success
(even without a Strumstick). 

Here are eight ideas that really help in the early stages of guitar. Our experience shows that using the Strumstick as a pre-Guitar trainer makes a big difference, however these ideas apply whether you use the Strumstick or not. These ideas were developed in 10 years of full-time guitar teaching, and they really help.

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Using Strumstick to Help Learn Guitar

Using Strumstick to Help Learn Guitar

by Robert McNally January 09, 2017

The Strumstick makes a terrific trainer for people learning guitar. This article will explain why that is. It will show you how to learn guitar faster and with less frustration using a Strumstick before or during your guitar learning period. With the Strumstick, you are getting exactly the basic training your fingers need to play guitar, but are having fun while you are doing it.

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Music is Easy (4) Rhythm and Feeling

Music is Easy (4) Rhythm and Feeling

by Robert McNally January 08, 2017

With music it is always an ongoing dance between familiarity and novelty. The background beat gives a safety net of familiarity, of stability. The rises and falls of melody give novelty, when the same note repeats, its a little dose of sameness. Creating changing rhythms is an ongoing balance of familiarity and novelty, and is one of the best tools a musician has for creating a living, three dimensional piece of music.

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