The TAC Spotlight is a weekly focus on members of Tony’s Acoustic Challenge who have posted at least one performance on the forums and are especially active in the community by showing exemplary support or inspiration for other TAC members. All TAC Spotlight featured members are nominated by other TAC members.
The ULTIMATE Guitar Practice Routine
Just show up every day, and I'll tell you what to play!
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Say hi to Carol M!
Dutchess County, New York
# of Years Played
Maybe 2 years as a teen-ager, then after 35 years of not playing, it’s been almost 2 years that I’ve been back at it.
Favorite three bands
1. Simon & Garfunkel
2. John Denver
3. James Taylor
4. Beatles, Eagles, Boston, CSN&Y, Kansas, Journey… How do you possibly narrow it down to just 3?
(Oh and I like The Carpenters, too)
How many guitars do you currently own?
I have 6 guitars in my house right now, and another one on the way.
In order of acquisition:
1. An old Harmony circa 1970?
My first baby from way back when, she died of a broken neck when I gave her new strings 2 years ago after being abandoned in a closet for 35 years. I keep her as a decoration and because I just can’t let her go.
2. A Taylor 110 (2 years old, lot of hours played on this one, already has dented frets)
3. A 12 string Epiphone (an impulse buy, on sale for a song, who could resist that? Still learning how to play this one but LOVE the harp-like sound a 12 string sings)
4/5: purchased on the same day (Severe GAS that day)
4. Taylor 812ce: The most gorgeous stunningly beautiful guitar ever made, and plays like butter! I will never be good enough for this guitar!
5. Cordoba Iberia C5 ce: a nylon string… My teacher snuck a few classical peices in with my lessons and before I knew it, I was hooked on Bach!
6. A Fender electric- just because I sometimes need to practice real quietly, so I plug the headphones into the amp and the neighbors are happy!
7. Shopping for a travel guitar to take on a plane to Bozeman for the 2016 TAC Retreat- looking at Martins now, I have always wanted one.
Why is it important for you to improve at guitar?
This must be a hard question since I left it for last. 2 reasons I think. Firstly, because I love the way guitar music sounds and it’s not enough for me to just listen- I love to be able to be a producer of guitar music and not just a listener. It’s thrilling to learn a new song and just play it!
The 2nd reason is that if I spend time doing something, I want to do it right and do it well. I don’t feel that I have that many talents, so if I can get a song out that people can recognize or even sing along to, it gives me a very satisfying sense of achievement.
Why are you an active TAC member?
When I was guitar shopping online, I found lots of reviews by Tony Polecastro on YouTube! I wanted to learn some of the songs he played in his reviews cuz he plays really cool, so I found the TAC community.
I joined for “just 1 month” to try it out. And, Wow. Tony’s style of teaching makes it so much easier- it’s broken down into manageable peices that you can loop over and over, and with the tabs and video- you have all you need! It’s awesome. I am learning so much.
But the community is even more awesomer. This is why I got an annual membership- There are so many fantastic guitar players and just downright nice people here in TAC. I love listening to all the video clips, seeing how well other people play, watching people grow and learn stuff they didn’t think possible. And if you post a question or problem? You better stand back cause before you can blink twice, there will be a flurry of posts answering back with information, answers, resources and support! It’s just a nice comfy guitar haven where you don’t have to explain yourself- everyone understands your guitar passion cuz they have it too.
What convinced you to submit your first performance video?
Watching other people posting their videos and seeing all positive comments and feedback- I wanted some of that too. I was a bit nervous posting my first one- (I think it was Scarborough Fair) but I’ve never seen anything negative posted anywhere in TAC, so I took the plunge and wow! It’s a bit addictive.
What else would be cool for people to know about you?
I used to be a chat room host for America OnLine, I am a certified Open Water Scuba Diver, and I taught myself how to juggle.