I had some free time over the weekend, so I got a chance to head to the nearest big guitar store in my area. I hadn’t been there in years. In fact, I’m pretty sure it’s been something like fifteen years.
There was an interesting crowd present, this past weekend. There were the usual folks — teens and twenty-something playing every metal riff that they could think of, and the old fat guys who at last found themselves with enough money to buy the guitars they dreamed about back when they were metal-riffing teens. (As for me, I’m an old fat guy who’s broke, and I feel bad that the salesfolks gave me so much attention, when there was no chance I was going to buy one of the $2,000 axes they were trying to sell me.)
There were also an awful lot of parents and kids in evidence. That was a positive surprise — I had thought that guitar music was considered passe these days, but I’m now slightly more confident that rock ‘n roll will be safely passed on to the next generation of shredders. But of course, in keeping with modern times, most of these families seemed to consist of divorced dads following their shared-custody kids around, saying things like, “What’s a humbucker?”
Also, there was a fair few women trying out guitars. Twenty years ago, I remember feeling as though the guitar store was a lot like a comic book shop: friendly to dudes, but not so welcoming to anyone else. That’s not so much the case anymore, I hope.
Anyway, I only ended up getting a tuner. There’s apparently been some amazing advancements in that technology, since the days when I was playing more regularly. They’ve got these ones that you kind of just clip on to your headstock, so you don’t have to even use a guitar cable or anything for them to work. I was so amazed by this that I had to get one. And it was only $30 bucks!