No, not tiny aircraft, though … those might make a nice accompantiment too.

“Of all harmonic devices, it [a drone] is not only the simplest, but probably also the most fertile,” says musicologist Peter van der Merwe. I don’t know much about him, but the sentiment goes right along with this clip. Here I’m making it up on the fly against the backdrop of a single C# note. Chord progressions can spark ideas for improvisation: Not only does a series of chords indicate a key, it gives you something to react to. With a drone, it’s all on you.

CLICK!

CLICK!

Still talking about arpeggios.

Still talking about arpeggios.

Promo shot, of sorts.

Promo shot, of sorts.

Friends of Pointy Guitar – I’d like to step out from behind the curtain for a minute to request a small favor. I’m honored to have been selected as a finalist in TrueFire’s Next Top Guitar Instructor contest. In that capacity, I’ve submitted five video lessons which will appear over the next few weeks, during which time the public will be able to weigh in on their favorites. Though I’m not normally prone to Internet begging, here is an exception: If you are so inclined, please click on the banner above (or click here) and vote for yours truly. In about 46 seconds—the length of Steve Vai’s “Lighter Shade of Green”—you can register and cast a vote. Thanks in advance.

And now back to regularly scheduled programming.