20 Years Out Of The Spotlight...
Vinnie Vincent Invasion
Vinnie Vincent Invasion: 1986
Vincent John Cusano, better known by his stage name "Vinnie Vincent" was a force to be reckoned with back in the 80's. He was a super shredder that made a name for himself as a former member of the rock band Kiss from 1982 until mid-1984 during the band's transition out of their 1973–1983 makeup period.
We All Know "Lick It Up"
Lick It Up was by far the most known Vinnie Vincent had become with his involvement in KISS. He played awesome solos and co-wrote a lot of the music, which really showed off his talent and song writing ability. What people don't always know is that Vinnie Played most of the solos on "Creatures of the Night." It definitely was NOT Ace!
Getting The Boot...
According to rumors, Vinnie Vincent was let go because of his "excessive soloing" although this was never really "confirmed with the band." Gene has been quoted as saying that Vinnie was let go because he "refused" to assign a contact with the band and he was uninsurable. Include his drug and alcohol abusing tendencies, they saw this as a way to boot him from the band. If that is the case, then I think it was a good move...however, it's hard to believe anything Gene Says... So I'll take it with a grain of salt....
Out With Kiss...In With The Invasion!
Vinnie Vincent Invasion was a shred happy Glam Metal Band formed by Vinnie Vincent after his Departure from Kiss. It's pretty amazing that Vinnie Vincent had a chance to CRUSH IT twice in his music world. Even though he left his mark with KISS, Vinnie Vincent Invasion was another legacy he will always have with him til the end of time!
We are all curious...what has Vinnie Been Up To??
: "I spent 20 years in hell. The broad strokes were very... they could have been not so broad. They could have been quickly and really amicably could have eliminated 20 years of pain. I would say pertaining to KISS, these are my friends. These are guys I love. I love them to this day. I've got tremendous memories that are wonderful. Most of them are. Not always can you have a band and have a certain... I hate this word 'magic,' but it is a magic. It's something you can't put into words
I don't Care What People Say About His Looks and Age... I just want to hear the music and read the Book!!
I love KISS and I love Vinnie Vincent. I hope that he is just happy and is going to show us that he is still the talented shredder we all know he can be! Visit HERE to read more on this story..
What do you think about Vinnie Vincent's return??? Comment Below!
Tony's Interest in me
After the Flying Fingers Competition was over, there was a strong urge to get my name out there in the guitar world. I was on Facebook one night, and I received a message from Tony MacAlpine's agent. Tony and his band we're making a North American tour and they were going to be coming through Omaha, NE.
Tony's Manager Contacted Me
Tony was one of the most kind hearted people I have ever met!
Invited me to have dinner with him
After Tony got set up and sound checked, him and the band hung out at the venue and had some food. I was sitting at a table in the bar. I didn't want to be that weird guy who follows a band around and asks really weird questions and freaks out the musicians, so I laid low by myself and just hung out.
Out of nowhere Tony came up to my table where I was sitting alone and said "Hey man, you don't have to sit alone come on over and have some food with me." COOLEST. THING. EVER.
Tony Was GRACIOUS Enough To Recommend ME!
Amazing Musical Experience
Needless to say... The whole experience was amazing and I am forever grateful that I got the opportunity to Jam with Tony MacAlpine live onstage in my home town of Omaha, NE!
I look forward to having an opportunity to jam many other successful guitar players in the near future...but if I don't get to have the opportunity, I will still be happy with everything I have gotten so far and the experiences I have gotten.
Tony MacApline and Zachary Adkins Onstage
Breaking the internet one photo as a time
As you can guess, this picture of John Petrucci and Mike Portnoy has basically broken the internet in the Metal Community. In 2010 Mike Portnoy announced that he was going to be leaving Dream Theater.
"The spirit carries on.."
Of course the first question on everybody's mind was:
"Is Dream Theater going to continue without Mike??"
"If they are...who in the world is gonna replace him??"
Dream Theater held a huge audition and recruited some of the best drummers in the world to try out to fill the shoes of Mike Portnoy...but only one could be the winner!
Mike replaces mike
The boys of Dream Theater came to the decision of who could replace Portnoy...
Enters: Mike Mangini.
Heading into 2018 Mike Mangini has released 3 Studio Albums with Dream Theater and an intense run of tours all over the world.
3 Albums in
What will 2018 bring?
So, I know that the band is very happy with Mangini's performance and personality. He is a very prepared and technically advanced musician and drummer.
What are your thoughts?
Are you looking forward to an Original Dream Theater Drummer Line-Up?
Soooo......WTF is an "ANTI" Band Name?
The whole "ANTI" band name is a funny trend on Facebook lately where people will post some of their favorite bands, but change their name to something that isn't quite right...
That's ok! You will get the hang of it as you go along. Once you get the idea, you will find yourself changing band names every time you hear one. It is a fun way to get creative and keep your brain muscles movin, but not only that..some of the band names you see changed are pretty damn funny!
**KEEP IN MIND** None of these are really "in order" they are just randomly placed based on the time I read them
So...Sit back, Relax, And Get Ready To Blow Small Puffs of Air Out of Your Nose
There you have it, some of my favorite "ANTI" Band Names. If you have any that you would like to add...please feel free to add some of yours as well and Share this on your Facebook or other Social Media pages!
Why Date Night Is So Important
If you live in Omaha, NE and are dating someone special, you know how crucial it can be to find the perfect place to have a romantic date night every now and again.
You know how it goes:
"Hey Babe, where do you wanna go for dinner on our date night?"
"Oh I don't know."
"Wanna go to Applebee's? Outback Steakhouse? Abalardos?"
"Nah. I kind want to go somewhere different. Some place that we haven't been too. Let's be adventurous"
So, you have to make a decision. Do you brave some place new and have the chance of being disappointed? Or do you just go with the regular place because it's consistent and you know you both like it.
This is something you do on a REGULAR night of the week, when you wanna just get something and go home and binge watch Friends.
BUT! When you are trying to impress your love or just spice up the date night ritual, without being afraid the food and service won't be up to par...then read ahead and when you go to any of these restaurants in Omaha... tell them Zachary (the guitar teacher) sent you!
YEAH! The guitar teacher in Omaha, sent you!
Spezia also won Best of Omaha 2015 for best happy hour! This is an amazing restaurant you and your significant other will love forever!
4. Bonefish Grill
Make sure to set a reservation though! They fill up fast and they are well worth it.
January 15, 2000 in St. Petersburg, Florida, the first Bonefish Grill was born.
3. Stokes Bar and Grill
2. Pizzeria Davlo
Ok, so Pizzaria Davlo ...not necessarily a "romance" driven environment. BUT! If you love Chicago style brick oven pizzas this is the best place for you.
Bullying... How Can Guitars Help?
Can playing guitar help you cope with Bullying?
The Simple Answer is....YES!.
In this article, we are by no means saying that Guitar is a complete substitute for the Negative Effects of Bullying. There is so many amazing products and services out there for parents that can help them explain the effects of bullying. Also, teach us that being compassionate and understanding of people's differences is important!
First Thing is First.... Let's Discuss Bullying
Bullying at any age is unacceptable...but younger children have a difficult time knowing how to Cope
1 in Every 4 Children are Bullied...Also, 40% of all teenagers with internet access have reported being bullied on line during the past year"
Bullying and Suicide...
Being bullied is a very painful experience for young people. There is something to say about children who have to live their whole lives suffering internally with the effects of bullying. The worst scenario that can come from bullying is Suicide
No one is you, and that is your power
Invest in some books that can open up the discussion of bullying!
So...Where does Guitar come into play?
Guitars can help you make New Friends..
If you are being bullied and you are all alone, it can feel as thought nobody out there cares about you. Maybe you are a shy person who is very introverted, if you pick up a guitar it can help you gain confidence in yourself. This confidence will lead to you finding a group of people that love music and guitar along side of you.
Having friends and sense of belonging is the most important thing you can do if you are trying to cope with bullying. Not only because they can be there to comfort you, but if you find yourself some friends that have your back...maybe they will stand up for you and eliminate the threat of a bully altogether!
Make Guitar your Best Friend...
We might not be able to stop bullying...but how can others cope?
The Best Guitars for Beginners...
So you want to start playing guitar...
Taking on any instrument can be an exciting but overwhelming experience. When it comes to the guitar, it can be even more of a daunting experience due to the many different price ranges, styles and functions of every guitar.
So in order to break this down for you, here are some questions you have to ask yourself:
Acoustic Guitars... Not just for beginners
When most of the population thinks of beginner guitars, their mind automatically pictures an acoustic guitar. There is a huge misconception about the acoustic guitar being the "first guitar you should learn on".
If the student is completely new to the world of guitars, they really don't need to worry about whether they are playing an acoustic or an electric. The only real deciding factor is just a preference to which style of music or genre the student is interested in learning.
Fender Squire Acoustic Bundle Pack
Yamaha JR1 Junior 3/4 Size Acoustic
Ibanez JamPack IJV50
Last But Not Least....
Guitar is the best form of Self-expression I know. Everything else, and I'm sorta just tripping around, trying to figure my way through life...
ELECTRIC GUITARS - Which one is for you?
Let's Get Loud!
When people first think about Electric Guitars, they generally think it is for advanced players that just love to get overly loud and distorted and that they have to shell out a huge chunk of cash in order to purchase one.
Yes, Electric Guitars have to ability to get loud very quickly and add distortion to that breathtaking/goosebumps-inducing situation. But, this doesn't change the misconception about Electric Guitars not being for beginners...OR buying one is way too expensive. This just simply is NOT true.
I can prove to you below that when purchasing an electric guitar it can be:
Davison Starter Pack
Rogue Starter Bundle
Ibanez Starter Bundle
When you have played guitar for awhile, its easy to find a specific guitar brand that suits your wants and needs and just fits your personality correctly. Although there are many to choose from, I thought it would be a fun idea to share my Top 5 Favorite Guitar Brands. I will share the name of the company and a breif description of what this guitar means to me and why I have it on my list. Enjoy!
ESP is a Japanese Made Guitar founded in 1975 by Hisatake Shibuya. These guitars comes in many different designs and shapes. Their quality it amazing and reliable. Some featured ESP Artists are Alexi Laiho (Children of Bodom), Kirk Hammet (Metallica), Behemoth, Glenn Tipton (Judas Priest) and Bill hudson (Trans Siberian Orchestra),
PRS (Paul Reed Smith) is an American Made Guitar founded in 1985 by founder Paul Reed Smith (go figure, huh?) These guitars are known for their amazing play-ability and outstanding craftsmanship. Some of the featured Artists on PRS' Roster are: Alex Lifeson (RUSH), Carlos Santana, Mark Tremonti (Creed/Alter Bridge) and Mark Holcomb (Periphery).
Dean Guitars is an American Made Guitar founded in 1977 by Dean Zelinsky. Dean has probably some of the most recognizable sponsored artists including the Late-Great Dimebag Darrell. Some other featured artists are: Dave Mustaine (Megadeth), Michael Amott (Arch Enemy), Michael Angelo Batio, Vinnie Moore and Rusty Cooley.
Schecter Guitar Research is an American Made Guitar founded in 1976 by David Schecter, Herschel Blankenship, and Shel Horlick. Schecter guitars pave the way for a more metal feel guitar that stands the test of time through reliability and craftsmanship. Featured Schecter Artists are: Synyster Gates & Zacky Vengeance (Avenged Sevenfold), Jeff Loomis, Chris Poland (Ex-Megadeth), and Keith Merrow.
and coming in first place.......
Was it really a guess that Ibanez would make the top of my list? There is so much to say about this company and their dedication to perfecting the instrument since the beginning. This Japanese Made Guitars are phenomenal. Some of the most well known guitar players have joined forces with this viking of the guitar world. Some artists include (but no limited to): Steve Vai, Joe Satriani, Paul Gilbert, Tosin Abasi (Animals as Leaders, Paul Stanley (KISS), Andy Timmons, Kiko Loureiro (Megadeth).
Thanks for Reading my blog. Hopefully you enjoyed the list and will continue reading my other blogs that will be posted! Check out my Audition for the Ibanez Flying Fingers Contest. Receiving 1st place in this competition was such an honor! :)
Below is my Top 8 Books about Success that you NEED to read...Enjoy!
Below is my Top 10 Reasons why I think you should be playing the guitar.... Enjoy!
10. Improve your concentration...
University of Zurich stated that the area of the brain associated with "Memory" was stimulated while playing the guitar. If you have ever felt like your ability to remember things has been slipping away over the years, it might be a great idea to pick up the guitar! Playing the guitar can benefit your brain and potentially aid you in your memory loss.
9. Learn to Multi Task...
Have you ever felt as though you couldn't do more than one thing at a time without one (or both) of those things falling apart? The guitar would be an amazing way for you to improve this. Not only do you have to bring hand eye coordination to the party, but if you start singing as well...get ready for you brain to explode!
Adding all of this together at a slow pace is exactly what is necessary to build your multitasking skills. So get started today!
8. Stress Relief...
Everybody knows that importance of unplugging from the "real world" of responsibilities. I always tell my students that the best thing they can do is tell themselves that they dont "HAVE" to play guitar...but rather that they "GET" to play the guitar. Sitting down for 15 - 45 minutes everyday can really help you temporarily get away from any worries and stresses that build up in your life. There is something very theraputic about being able to crank up the guitar and amp to 11 and not worrying about anything for awhile. Do yourself a favor and break the sound barrier!
7. Relive past memories...
Have you ever been driving around in your car by yourself, and all the sudden there is a song that comes on the radio and it feels like a sucker punch of emotion that overwhelms you and brings a flood of memories from your past? I have had this happen on so many occasions. here is an extremely deep connection to music that all of us have, whether you are a musician or not. So, what if you were able to go home and pick up the guitar and learn that song, so you could play it anywhere anytime?
This song could have been from a past relationship, a family member or friend who past away, that time in school when you were really into Limp Bizkit....
...maybe you would want to forget about that particular memory.
6. Build Confidence...
There is nothing more empowering (in my opinion) than standing onstage in front of thousands of people and having them all there for you. They want to see you perform, show off your skills and support you. When the night goes off without a hitch, you feel as though nothing can tear you down. Good luck falling asleep after something amazing like that happens to you.
5. Make New Friends...
When you get into music, whether it is rock, pop, punk, rap, R&B or whatever...you will be introduced to a whole new world of people in the very same Genres. Playing guitar can help you gain some new friends that support the same passion as you. Don't get stuck with the same people you knew from high school, branch out and experience other people and if they are into guitar as well, you can easily confide in someone that understands your triumphs and struggles with the instrument...they may even push you to get better too!
4. Rebelling against your parents
**DISCLAIMER** I don't condone you getting disowned by your parents....just a little aggravation maybe... haha
I was very fortunate to have parents that were very heavily into music, my father is a Guitar Instructor and Player as well! However, I know that there are some people that maybe arent quite as lucky. Some parents dont see the benefits of the guitar, and maybe it was their upbringing or whatever...but there is a reason you want to pick up the guitar, and maybe that reason is simply just to piss you parents off and show them that you are your own unique person with passions not in line with theirs... there is nothing wrong with this either, rebellion is a natural human feature. Embrace it..and prove every single person who doubted you WRONG!
On the other side...hopefully your parents are cool and support you on the journey! :)
3. Make side Cash...
Money seems to always be in short supply when it comes to grinding musicians (not including the millionaire pop stars here, BTW)
You might be surprised to know however, that if you play your cards right, you can make a little extra side income, or even better yet...a full time career from it. If you get to the point where you can play on stage or on the streets, you may be able to collect some TIPS in cash. Even more over tho...you might get to the point where you are good enough to teach this skill to others. If you charge aggressively and stay consistent and trustworthy...you could potentially pick up enough students to not have to work a "real" job
2. You look Badass
Lets just say it like it is...Guitar Players are sexy. #SORRYNOTSORRY. There is something about having a guitar in your hand or strapped around your neck that makes you irresistible to people. I mean...look at Paul Stanley...not a very attractive man, but that guitar really helps push him to another level.
1. Be an Inspiration to Others...
Sometimes it is a blessing to be able to help others. When you get better and better at the guitar, you will notice that people will come to you for advice. Sometimes these people might be younger than you and just starting out, but more times than not you will be helping people who are in a funk with the instrument. They might have been trying for years to get to the level you are at. Helping people reach their goals and feel inspired to better themselves is an amazing feeling.
Author: Zachary Adkins
Guitar Player. Guitar Instructor. Entrepreneur. Lover of Music.