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November 2020 The Walking Stick

This month’s track is “The Walking Stick”, composed and performed by Jack Gates, from his album Voyage of the Troubadour. Jack had one of my instruments in the late 70’s and currently has a 2013 and 2018, spruce and cedar topped respectively. This recording was done with none of those, but from a guitar he took to his home studio to record samples using strings of different composition and from different manufacturers to help me determine which sounded best on my guitars. This track was done in his home studio, recorded simply with a stereo pair of microphones, placed about 4ft. away and 4ft. above the instrument, capturing a natural room ambience. Since I met him those many years ago, Jack has been instrumental in the development of my craft. Whenever I complete a guitar, I feel I’ve locked my musical soul in this box, with my clumsy, fumbling technique hardly the key to set it free. Jack is one of the first people I call to try to hear what the new ax has got. His strong, clear, dynamic, colorful, and lyrical playing help me determine where I’ve come, and where I want to go. And, almost more importantly, knowing my work, he can express whether he thinks I’ve retained the traits I value, while perhaps adding something new. Learn more about Jack and access his music at


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