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L&M Student Profile the Month--Dave Fengler

Thursday, August 9, 2012
Dave FenglerName: Dave Fengler

City: Wallingford, CT

Forum Username: CTGull

My Gear:
2010 Seagull S6 Cedar Original
2004 Seagull S6 Coastline Cedar Folk
2010 Alvarez RD20S12 12 String Acoustic
1962 Gibson ES125T
1999 Epiphone Les Paul Limited Edition Blue Quilt Top
1993 Peavey Predator
2010 Big Lou FrankenTele (1.88” wide neck, prototype)
Roland Micro Cube
Fender Frontman 15G
POD 2.0
VOX Amplug
Yamaha P200 (88 weighted key electric grand piano)
5.1 stereo system centered on my computer made of components I’ve accumulated over the last 30 years.

I rarely play through the amps. I use the POD 2.0 run into my computer to play with mp3’s and listen with headphones. Sometimes, I run the computer into my stereo. I use the VOX Amplug to practice in the half hour before my guitar lesson while my son is in his piano lesson.

Favorite Artists/Bands: My musical taste has been influenced by people I’ve known over the years. In the 70’s it was classic rock, the 80’s was Rush, followed by smooth jazz guitar and piano of Lee Ritenour, Larry Carlton, Dave Grusin; with some Classical music mixed in.

In the 90’s life took over and I lost interest in music. Somewhere in the 90’s my wife converted me from rock to country and my exposure to music was listening to the radio in my car. Last year, in a fit of “male mid-life crisis”, I rediscovered much of the music I listened to decades before. Classic Rock, Rush, smooth jazz, Clapton, and Peter Frampton. Peter is an amazing guitarist that hasn’t been recognized in the mainstream since his Frampton Comes Alive days. We saw him last year in the FCA 35th anniversary tour. Amazing show!

As I reached back into my music timeline I rediscovered James Taylor (and Carol King) and realized how much I enjoy fingerstyle guitar. That’s when I realized I was going to convert from electric to acoustic guitar. I don’t need all the fancy effects; I just want to learn to play beautiful music.

Recently rediscovering The Beatles has added more fingerstyle interest and thoughts of pulling out the electrics again. We went to a 10 hour Beatles festival last weekend. I almost forgot to mention Joe Bonamassa! I’m not a big fan of repetitive Blues but man can that guy play the guitar!!! And Stevie Ray Vaughan!! An incredible guitarist taken before his time. I was fortunate enough to see him in concert 1 year before he died, after he got himself cleaned up from drugs.

Favorite styles to play: Fingerstyle & strumming folk, country, pop and what ever I make up

What made you want to play music? I believe you are made up of the things you experience in your lifetime. I only realized recently the fingerstyle seed had been planted 30 years ago, before I was even interested in guitar. My father had a friend (Guitar Dave) who always traveled with an acoustic guitar. Where ever he went he played James Taylor, Dan Fogelberg and other fingerstyle songs. I haven’t seen him in over 25 years. I wish I could talk to him today and let him know how he has influenced my life and get his guidance in learning to play the songs that he’s burned into my brain.

Discovering this course, this great forum and Steve’s Live Lessons have greatly influenced me wanting to play guitar. If it wasn’t for them, I probably would have given up again. Having the resources available on the internet has also made a huge difference vs. the 80’s.

Previous music experience: About 1985, I traded a moped for a 1962 Gibson ES125T from a friend of my fathers. He had Parkinson’s and couldn’t ride a motorcycle anymore. He bought the guitar new and played it in a band in the 60’s. I learned many older Rush songs (strummed and arpeggiated chords only) with it in the 80’s. Even though I don’t “feel” Alex Lifeson’s style, I really enjoy his choice of chords.

As I mentioned in the “Favorite Artists/Bands” section, I lost interest in music in the 90’s when life took over, and rediscovered it last year when I hit my “male mid-life crisis”. A few guitars are cheaper than a 500 HP Mustang! And a lot safer!

I’ve been struggling with Session 3 on and off for a while; I should ignore my pursuit of perfection and move on to Session 4. I took private guitar lessons for 6 months, ending last month when I realized it wasn’t going in the direction I wanted. I’ve also been playing around with chords and fingerstyle for the last few months, since the Fingerstyle themed month and the great guests Steve had on the Live Lessons.

If the house was on fire, which instrument would you grab? My Seagull S6 Cedar!

Favorite place to be when playing guitar: I have guitars hung above my desk (Man Cave) downstairs and in the bedroom so there’s no excuse to not pick one up as long as I’m home and not busy doing something else. It’s much quieter downstairs, so that’s my favorite place.

Most delightful musical moment so far: I know I’ve got a long road ahead of me on the journey of learning to play guitar. I’ve only recently started back down that road after decades away. My highest moment would have to be what I learned and played back in the 80’s. I’m still not at that level, but I’m moving in a different direction now, learning fingerstyle.

Our 15 year old son has been taking piano lessons for 2 years. My wife played acoustic guitar in High School (30+ years ago) and I’m trying to get her back into it along with getting our 10 year old daughter started. I’m hoping to have many great musical moments in the future, playing with my family.

Hobbies: Since my job is to design custom tooling (fixtures, gages, automation) or improve existing tools, it’s only natural that I like to tinker and improve things around the house. I bought the LM Guitar Setup DVD’s to learn how to setup and maintain my guitars. Other mechanical and electrical things aren’t safe from my tinkering either.

Along with playing the guitar I’d like to learn to play the piano. I have a Yamaha P200 (88 weighted key electric grand piano) next to my desk holding up a bunch of guitar books.

We also have a number of exotic animals, such as lizards, snakes, birds and a few mammals. Some of the birds are intelligent enough to enjoy music. The reptiles, not so much.

Books: I’m currently reading The Talent Code. I’m also working on Mark Hanson’s Fingerstyle Guitar book.

Current Job: Tool Designer. I design and have built fixtures, guages, automation, and program robots for automation.
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