Time To Hibernate - Guitar Research

by Tim Gillespie

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I am writing this in December. I love this time of year. The mountains are filling up with snow, there are holiday lights all over my house. Cookies are everywhere and friends just drop by because, well, it's the holidays.

This holiday season is also special because it signifies a time to forget about business and concentrate on research and writing. Retailers are busy, chain stores are all stocked up and nobody is going to call my business phone for about two weeks.

For the rest of the year, I am going to concentrate on exploring issues I find interesting and putting together some new material. This means quiet days of work and testing ideas on my guitar, and holiday cheer at night. I better stock up on logs for the fire.

There is going to be time to work and time to play. The ski trails are all open now and some of my friends will take some time off to turn a few, and kick glide for a few miles in the high Colorado forests. The ski areas are open and the snow is good. If you can avoid the early season avalanches, it can be a true winter wonderland.

This year we are going to be neck deep in family members that have decided to travel to Colorado for Christmas. That means lots of kids, lots of toys and lots of laughing. Nobody is going to get a lot of sleep and there will be plenty of late night conversations.

Here is a holiday idea I love. If you are going to have family or friends around this year, get your old amps and microphoness out, and crank it up with the kids. Either get some holiday music or some songs that kids can sing, practice for a few minutes and turn them loose with the microphones. They love this stuff. Several microphones are better than just one, as they tend to fight over it. Fun songs will build memories like crazy and it is your skill that can deliver the goods.

If you do a good job of structuring this, you can suck the adults in too. If they see some good natured fun happening, they will not want to be left out. Before long you can have everyone in on the act. I find all my friends are just waiting for the chance to sing a few bars if only someone would let them.

Holiday memories for everyone and all because you have some talent and were willing to share it.

If you need to recharge your batteries, take some time off or just reflect back on this year, this is the time to do it. From the people I have talked to, everyone seems to be extra thankful this year. September 11th changed a lot of things and this has made quite an impression. I don't think the holidays will be as commercial as most years and I think the emphasis is going to be on enjoying each other and celebrating the fact that we are all together.

So get out your old song books, pull up a chair and make sure your strings are new. The holidays are here and your guitar was made for this. Get out there and mix it up! People are depending on you!