David Terrenoire's Comments

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At 1:50am on March 13, 2007, Paul Guyot said…
"I also play Piedmont blues on a 1947 Martin 00-18"

Holy Grail of guitars, Batman!

I bow before you.

I'm a Fender guy. A newer Strat and a '73 Tele that I love. I play through a Wiggy - an amp designed by a friend of mine for Peavey that is incredibly versatile. More amp than I'll ever be able to use.

I too, am not a guitar player, but damn I'm trying. One day I hope to be.

I tried the harp years ago - after being exposed to Charlie Musselwhite - but I was too young and immature to understand what a cool instrument it was.
At 12:55am on March 13, 2007, David Terrenoire said…
Paul,

I'm a harp player. I play guitar, but I'm not a guitar player. I am a harp player.

For the gearheads:

Guitar, I play a Les Paul. I know, it's fat for the blues, and if my playing justified a jump, I'd buy a 335 or, in my dreams, an L5. But the Les Paul does fine playing rhythm backup for our lead. My amp is a Fender Deluxe, single 12.

Harp, I play a Special 20 through a 1941 Shure biscuit mic this guy in LA made for me. My amp is a 1948 National that cranks, at best, 17 watts, but has an industrial crunch that brings home the money. I've added a reverb pedal to it for a little depth, but as with everything else, it's a WIP.

That's my electric stuff. I also play Piedmont blues on a 1947 Martin 00-18, one of the sweetest guitars ever made on this planet. I have a resonator, and although I'm no slide player I'm not dead yet, so who knows.

Nothing gets me higher than playing 8-bar in a smoky room, hitting the bridge like it was Selma. Cause, damn man, that's when it gets really really good. I love jump like Louis Jordan and T-Bone Walker. If that was all I could play from now until the day I died, that would be just fine.

And I'm happy you asked. It's not often I get to talk gear in a room full of writers.
At 9:23am on March 12, 2007, Paul Guyot said…
David,
I've heard for so long about your affinity for the blues, as well as your prowess, so I've been wanting to ask you...

What are your tools of the trade? What do you play? And what kind?
At 6:00am on March 11, 2007, Sean Chercover said…
Perhaps it's just that we are simple creatures, unburdened by intelligence or talent. Things like intelligence and talent weigh on the mind and sharply reduce one's capacity for fun.

So crime writers have more fun than literary writers. And dogs have more fun than people.

And amoebas? Woah. The party never ends for amoebas.
At 5:01am on March 10, 2007, David Terrenoire said…
Thank you, Mindy. I tried to find something that would cheer everyone up.
At 3:16am on March 10, 2007, M.G. Tarquini said…
Cheerful little avatar you got there, Dave...
At 10:54am on March 9, 2007, Laura Benedict said…
Thanks for the friendship, David. I enjoyed your question of the day--I have to agree with whoever said "the politics in academia are so brutal because the rewards are so small." My husband, Pinckney, has been a writer in the academy for almost twenty years, and things sure do get ugly. Personally, I go for the sharp stick in the eye, rather than the toaster route!
At 7:33am on March 9, 2007, Daniel Hatadi said…
Mister! He called me Mister! Glad to have you on board, David.
At 2:14am on March 9, 2007, David Terrenoire said…
Are writers who write about murder more fun than writers who write about women finding empowerment through quilting?

That's the question of the day.

This came up in a bar, naturally, in a confab of writers - some crime, some literary, and some downright criminal. Ad Hudler, literary novelist, admitted to homicidal ambitions. Why?

Because crime writers, he said, have more fun than literary writers.

I know a few literary writers, like Soren Palmer who's been nominated for a Pushcart Prize (you go, Soren). These are kudos rarely handed out to those of us who dabble in murder but Soren, aside from the dour Scandinavian name his folks hung on him, is an enjoyable guy to hang with, as is Mr. Hudler.

So, if it's true that crime writers have more fun, why is that? Following are three theories, the first of which is my favorite but it is almost assuredly bullshit.

Theory #1: We write away our demons. Yeah, it's all like poetic and all, but as much as I like it I don't buy it.

Theory #2: Crime writers are tap dancers. Elmore Leonard isn't wrestling with any deep philosophical conundrums. He's writing about bad people in bad places. Those of us who write crime are, at bottom, trying to entertain the reader, not enlighten them. So it's no wonder that we're entertaining. As long as our standards are low and the bar is open.

Theory #3: Literary writers come, mostly, from academia and everyone knows that academia is a bog of petty politics, back-stabbing, and professional envy. Someone smarter than I am (and we're talking multitudes here, people) said that the politics in academia are so brutal because the rewards are so small. I know one professor at Duke who cannot stand Reynolds Price, mostly because Price is wildly successful by literary standards. So it stands to reason that if you get a group of literary writers in a room together, the similarity to a snake pit is not coincidental. No wonder so many of those books make me want to take a bath with my toaster.

That's what I think. Anyone else want to weigh in on why we have more fun than literary novelists? I'm open for your theories, the more outrageous the better.

Talk to me.

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