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Student Profile: Michael Overstreet

Monday, December 05, 2011
Guitar Student Michael




Name: Michael Overstreet

Gender: Male

My City: Lonoke Arkansas

Forum Username: Percision

My Instruments/gear:
INSTRUMENTS: Right now I have a Vineyard Les Paul copy that has an amazing feeling 60’s slim profile neck to me and it sounds pretty darn good on the neck pickup.  It does have some issues but what can you expect for a guitar that cost me less than $200 dollars. Recently I also picked up a Ibanez SGT110-VS acoustic. It’s the guitar I landed upon after spending hours in a few guitar shops in the Little Rock/Jacksonville, AR area. The neck on it is a lot like the 60’s slim profile as well and it has a really good action. I could play a Fm7 barre chord on it with relative ease and the body fits me just right whether I’m sitting or standing. Sounds good to my ears but I’m not a acoustic aficionado so it might not sound as good as I think it does haha. I use to have a Gibson LP studio but I sold it not too long ago. It sounded absolutely great but I bought it when I first started learning the guitar 2 years ago without knowing anything about guitars and how much a difference the feel of a neck could make on your ability to play and learn. It had a 50’s wide profile neck that just doesn’t work with my hands. Live and learn on that one and now I know exactly what I want in a guitar.
AMPS:  Bugera V22 and a Blackstar HT-5 Combo.  I’m looking into getting a Blackstar HT-60 Soloist soon. From what I’ve seen it looks like the perfect amp for my needs of playing in band settings.

Favorite Artists/Bands: There are so many to choose from but I would have to say my favorite artist is Stevie Ray Vaughan. I’ve always liked his in your face style of blues. My favorite band is Led Zeppelin you got to love a band where every person in it is absolutely amazing musically.

Favorite style(s) to play: Blues and classic rock and because of Session 10 a little fingerstyle too!

What made you want to play music? As a young kid I was interested in music but never got that “push” to really learn an instrument. I don’t think I had ever expressed any interest in learning the guitar. Fast forward nearly decade later and I’m a video game geek playing Guitar Hero pretty darn good where I could play most of the songs on their hardest version rather well. I can’t quite remember exactly what song I was playing that lit a fire under my rear but I was playing something and suddenly thought that this is silly! I look like a fool with my red plastic guitar and I should learn how to really play this for real. Started saving up money for a guitar and the rest is as they say history. Previous music experience (even if you're a complete beginner, anything musical will be interesting here): I’ll start from the very beginning, back when I was a kid I was in the 6th & 7th grade boys choir.  Jump forward to me being 25/26ish years old just after I got my Gibson LP studio I got a few learn guitar book’s with an accompanying DVD. I really didn’t learn much other than a few chords and the 1st form of the pentatonic scale. The way they presented their material was in such a ill constructed fashion where nothing built upon what you had just learned.

I did that for 2 months before I looked around in the Little Rock area for guitar instructors and found a very nice studio at a reasonable monthly price where I have been a student of for nearly 2 years now. They have workshops, great instructors, monthly jam sessions for students, and a very fun improvisation class that I’m getting a lot of mileage out of. The multitudes of technique issues I’ve had where my teacher and I have been able to correct have been completely invaluable where if we had not fixed those little issues they would have ballooned into something very bad and could have caused me some nasty wrist injuries. Having a teacher who will ask you what’s giving you problems and going through methods to help you fix it is something I encourage everyone to do if they can afford it, not that it’s a requirement to become a good guitar player or anything but it does help to have someone in person who knows a thing or two about learning the guitar that can critique you.

Now after a year and a quarter of lesson’s I was wanting to find some kind of music program that would teach me how to at least be capable of understanding sheet music & have a decently structured program that I could go through side by side with what I’ve been learning with my guitar teacher. I honestly LUCKED into finding Gibson's Learn & Master Guitar. Saw a video by chance on YouTube of  Steve on a sidebar and clicked on it. I was pretty impressed by the video and bought the program right away and haven’t regretted it one bit because I’ve learned so much already from it and will continue to do so until I reach Session 20.

If your house was on fire, which instrument would you grab? I would close my bedroom door assuming that the fire isn’t in the room and open up my window and start moving my gear outside one at a time. Just have an amp & some pedals and two guitars. I think I could get it all out in under a minute with adrenaline pumping. Now if my room were on fire I’m just going to go outside. Not worth it to get burned over a guitar even with sentimental value invested into my gear. If I had a 10k+ one of a kind guitar then I probably would risk it and go for the guitar through the flames.

What is your favorite place to be when playing guitar? I like playing up on a stage the best, whether there are or aren’t any people watching. I get such a different feeling being on a stage even just practicing my normal material at the studio I go to than I do when I’m just at home practicing.

What has been your highest, most delightful musical moment so far? My best musical moment was when I began to pass on my limited music knowledge to others. It’s kind of weird that you don’t know you really know something until you can show it to other people and they understand what you are talking about and in turn learn something new that they hadn’t known before.  The 2nd best was when me and a student were waiting for the 9 pm adult jam session to start we started playing a rhythm and one of us would play a solo and the other would do the rhythm and we would bounce back and forth. It was incredibly fun and that was as far as I can remember the first moment that I can recall where I thought and felt that I really could become a good guitar player.

Hobbies: Playing my guitar, driving my car and shooting guns.

Current Job: I work at Remington Arms in Lonoke Arkansas where I am employed as a Research and Development Technician. Basically what I do is hand load ammunition and then test it in different guns, I also go out on the production floor to help run special R&D samples when needed. It’s a very good and fun job because who doesn’t like getting to do a part of your hobbies? My favorite thing I’ve been able to shoot has been the M60 Squad Automatic Weapon it’s a 308 Win chambered, belt fed fully automatic weapon that I was able to shoulder fire standing up without using the front bipod for support. That gun is very heavy but it’s a blast to fire with the bipods and holding the weapon in its properly intended fashion too.
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