No. 296, August 2017
On the cover: Rising singer-songwriter Joan Shelley on her influences, open tunings, and working with Jeff Tweedy; plus, play her song “Wild Indifference.” Features: “Changemakers”—A look at organizations and companies that are providing guitars, training teachers, offering lessons, and more to bring music to underprivileged and under-served communities in the US and abroad; “Scott Joplin’s Sizzling Syncopations” celebrates the celebrated ragtime composer and also offers music for his famous “Maple Leaf Rag.” Lessons: Six steps to improve your rhythm playing; how to play the blues like Booker “Bukka” White; improve your flatpicking skills with precision picking. More songs: Bessie Smith’s “Mama’s Got the Blues,” and Tom Paxton’s “A Daughter in Denver.” Gear: Marchione OMC; Waterloo WL-S; Fender paramount PM-3; Michael Kelly 3D Grand Auditorium; Taylor GS Mini-e Bass; Fishman SA Performance Audio System. Also; The effort to halt illegal rosewood logging; a home recording primer for guitarists; strategies for landing your next gig; blues guitarist/singer Ruthie Foster; albums by “American Primitives” Max Ochs and Harry Taussig, Suitcase Junket, and George Thorogood (solo acoustic).