How to create a great acoustic guitar cover

How to take a song and turn it into an acoustic guitar cover.

I don’t want to waste a lot of your time so I’ll get right to the point. This is what I try to do when I create an acoustic cover of a popular song.

Really love the song you are going to rework on acoustic

First things first, pick a song that you can get into. It makes a ton of sense to choose a great song that means something to you because you are going to spend a lot of time working on it. Pick a song that has a moving melody and chord structure that you feel will carry itself playing just by yourself.

Golden rule – If you can hum it, play it!

This is probably the only rule you need to take seriously. This is undoubtedly where you will make or break your version of the acoustic tune. Ask yourself if I needed to explain a song to someone, what part would I sing them? The intro or those little riffs between verses absolutely make the song and should be considered. So sing them first, then pick out the notes one at a time. Once you get the melody, add the chords. This is where you will spend most of your time because it really isn’t that easy to do but know that the more you do it the easier it will get. Also, the more open chords that you know the more option you will have.

So what do I do?

Learn the melody line in all position first. This means you want to play the melody within a six fret span in multiple places starting on different strings or fingers. If you sing as well, just compliment the vocals.

Secondly, lay the chords on top of the melody pattern and see where they line up. Being able to move the melody gives you more options for chords. Depending on your skill level it can get really complicated. My suggestion is to keep it simple and revisit it to make modification as your skill level increases.

Try to use open chords

Open chords on an acoustic guitar played right just sound great! So get yourself a capo as well as a chord library app and get to work. Now don’t misunderstand me barre chords are great and work just fine but you won’t get the full sound that you are expecting from an acoustic cover. However not everything can be played with open chords, so trust your ears and let that be your deciding factor.

Try adding a bass line

When your listening to your song pay attention to the bass line. Remember the golden rule that “If you can hum it, play it.” This is a great way to add movement to your song. This can get tricky if you are also playing the melody and you will most likely need a thumb pick to accomplish all of this. There is some great video on YouTube. My favorite acoustic guitar player is Tommy Emmanuel.

Think genre or style of music

What I like to do is take a song and change the genre or style. Any metal songs unplugged to me sounds great. Listen to different music. There are a million great songs that have a great melody or lyrics and changing the style makes it come back to life. A perfect example is The song “House Of The Rising Sun” by the animals. That song was passed down from generation to generation, no one knows who even wrote that tune. However, the song was a monster hit by just giving it the 60’s sound.

Keep the rhythm tight and percussive

Now that you got the melody, the chords and maybe even a bass line you should consider adding some percussive hits. One way would be hitting the acoustic guitar body on the bottom side. Another trick I like to do is mute the strings with my pick hand and hit the strings to give it that snare snap sound. I’ve also seen but never used ring shakers or tambourines. Anything to help the music flow and come alive will be a bonus addition. However too much may destroy you mojo, less is sometimes more so decide where you are going to add the hits.

Now get to work!

Well I hope I gave you some good ideas and direction so you can rework your next acoustic classic. Please share with me in the comments below some of your posted creations. Also, check out my youtube page for some of my acoustic covers.

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If you can hum it, play it!!

Guitar Meditation Experiment Results Jan 7, 2019o

January 7, 2019

I haven’t been having much luck lately with gaining universal knowledge through meditation and I wondered why.  Was I asking too much, was it all just BS, or was I just wasting my time with all of this?  So I paused and revisited my notes that I’ve written after each meditation and realized something very important.  I’ve been asking the universe for knowledge with respect to my goal of writing 5 great songs by January 31st.  Well within my January 3, 2019 mediation I had written down that I had discovered two cool sites.  One was “Voice Leading for Guitar”  and “Mastering Music Theory to Improve Your Songwritting: Major and Minor Modes” both via Take Note Berklee Online magazine.  What I failed to realize at the time was that I was given a building block to assist me with my request for knowledge.   It is now apparent that the right answer is never going to be told to you or just handed over.  Its going to take some real work to understand and build your vision.  I don’t believe Einstein was just given the manual for the theory of relativity, I do believe that he got the building blocks from our universe and began to put them together.

Here is what I’ve been doing the past few days.

January 3, 2019 Meditation Notes:

  • Mentioned two articles and posted on my Facebook page.  Skimmed but never really took the time to dive into what was being said. – MISTAKE ON MY PART
  • Started mediation around 9 PM, I felt tired and drained.  It is definitely better either in the morning or afternoon.
  • After calming, I saw a pyramid with a bright white light coming out of the top.
  • After that a very detailed white almost painted slender face with coal colored eyes popped into my vision.  It startled me and I lost the face immediately.
  • Recorded some guitar ideas after the session.

January 4, 2019

  • Session again occurred at night, this time around 11:00 PM.
  • Tried to meditate while lying in bed, there was no timer set for this session.  I’m not even aware how long the session was.
  • I tried focusing on seeing myself playing guitar and coming up with ideas.
  • Since I was in bed I didn’t document my results

January 5, 2019

  • Meditated in the morning on my new meditation chair.
  • Tried something new by aligning myself facing North.  I used my phone’s compass to get as accurately as I could.
  • Focused on music and theory this is when I realized that I needed to learn the provided knowledge.

January 6, 2019

  • Did not meditate not sure why but I wasn’t feeling the need.  I believe it is because I haven’t yet gone through the linked material from Berklee Online Magazine.

Part of a Blog series.  See last Post

Guitar Meditation Experiment Results Jan 2, 2019

Welcome my friends to another Blog post!  I’m very new to this blogging so I’m still trying to figure it all out…  So, I got a chance to sit and meditate for about 25 minutes today, immediately after finishing, I started writing down what I remembered.  It was interesting to say the least!  Thoughts starting moving very fast through my brain and I realized that its pretty hard to just not think of anything.  Once I began to calm down, I started to focus on why I was doing this.  Mostly to relieve stress, but I’m trying to see if some sort of higher power would assist me with writing 5 great songs by January 31st.  I’m still a beginner at meditating, its not like I’ve been doing this for years, but I think I got something out of my session today.  Mostly they were random thoughts coming to me but some of them seemed to move like movies on the back of my eyelids.   I’m not sure just yet what it all means but I’ve included a break down of some of the thoughts I wrote down.  LAST BLOG POST

  • I saw a lot of color like a rainbow swirling down but not like a laser light but more gaseous and cloudy.
  • Saw people but not any particular faces in motion, one that I remember was someone with long hair standing by moving water like a river or large stream.  A light seemed to be behind the person so the front of the face and body was dark.
  • Another image was a lightly covered rocky mountain top at dusk where I appeared to be looking out over the horizon, clouds were moving by somewhat fast.  It was like watching a black and white movie.  Crazy!!
  • I remember hearing subconsciously ” Dark into night” or “Dark into light” but I thought of a Dio song and I lost the thought.
  • I felt some positive vibes and a feeling like it was windy, maybe because of the mountain top vision?
  • I did get a melody in my head but I wasn’t sure what to do at that moment.  Should I have stopped and tried to figure out the melody or continue with the meditation until I reached my 25 minute goal?  I chose to continue meditating but I couldn’t remember the exact melody I’d heard.  Here is a short video I shot on my phone after.  In any event, I came up with something.  Link to my YouTube Page

I’m not sure what all this means just yet but tomorrow will be another day and experience I’m sure of it!  I’ve realized however, I probably won’t be able to blog daily with all my other stuff going on.  I will write down my daily activity in a book and when I get some time, probably every other day or two, I’ll share my progress.  This might just work!

If you have any comments or thoughts please let me know.

Welcome to Guitar Therapist

Today is January 1, 2019, and I see no reason why not to start my new blog today. I don’t know where it will take me but I’m sure I’ll learn a lot about this new thing I’m going to start. I’ve made a goal to write 5 great songs by January 31, 2019. I’m planning on taking a different approach to get to my goal. I’m hoping it will work to keep my focus and mind fresh on ideas.

So here goes nothing, my first step is to try to meditate for at least 20 min every day focusing on my guitar playing and any ideas that may come to me. I plan on writing them down and share as I go along. They might not make sense at the time to me or anyone but I’m hoping it comes together as I keep focusing on my goal and meditation.

As I go along, I’ll modify to suit what comes about. So within the next few days, I’ll post what happening. In this series, I’ll also play some of my ideas that come to me as well. In any event, I hope that I will meet my goal of 5 great songs by January 31, 2019. If anyone has tried this approach please comment on your experiences. I look forward to hearing from you.

Brian Bachorz – Earl of Quag


Music as an influence

While I was sitting in my favorite chair today I meditated on the thought if music had played any role in who I am today. I started to remember music I listened to growing up, mostly my parents music riding in a car. It was mostly 60’s and 70’s music or anything by Elvis. I did listen to a lot of ethnic eastern European polkas as well. All pretty mellow stuff.

I started to think what my 10-year-old has been listening to on the same radio while riding in my car. The only real difference other than being more modern sounding was the lyrical content. For today’s music to stand out it has to shock or dramatize something that is not necessarily age appropriate for all groups of people.

So my conclusion has been that the next generation of adults will most likely be assholes. We are in trouble. Boycott rap or you will be doomed!

Joy of discovering plug-in effects for recording.

I don’t claim to be an expert in recording or mixing and this post is just me expressing my satisfaction with both Waves Gold Edition and BBE’s Suite of plugins. If you haven’t tried them your missing out on a ton of great effects and mixing tools.

My biggest surprise was BBE’s suite. As a guitar player, I discovered BBE’s Sonic Maximizer in the early 90’s. I still have the rack unit. It always gave me a much fuller sound just using it alone. So today I wanted to see if there was a plug-in I could use that was a VST3. To my surprise there was! So I purchased it for $99. The suite came with the BBE’s Sonic Maximizer, Harmonizer, Loudness, and Bass3 modules. Instantly my mixes sounded 100% better, fuller and crisper. As I stated earlier I’m not much of a guru when it comes to effects and mixing but I really did notice a difference.

The Wave Gold edition is incredibly awesome! I just went through the presets and I was amazed at the clarity and effects I was hearing. The reverb is out of this world. The Gold edition was a bit pricey even though I got it on sale for $250 but the more I use it the more I believe it was money well spent.

I know it seems like I’m babbling and I might be but by just having these tools in my arsenal I feel that I can mix a pretty decent demo of my own original shit. I may just remix and re-master some of my completed stuff again. I’m in the process of recording a new song now that once it is completed I’ll post the results.

Thanks for reading, check out my main website for what I’m up to musically.

How to clean your room

It’s very easy. The first thing you need to do is pick up the big stuff and strategically hide or just move out of the room. If you got a closet put all your shit in there and close the door. This will give the impression that the room is bigger than it actually is. Once your done moving stuff around get a vacuum cleaner and run over your carpet or hardwood floor. Spray some Lysol and that should do it.

Now relax with a beer and pass the good word along to your friends!

Check out my website for more details.

How to use an Eddie Van Halen D-Tuna for Drop D Tunning

I just found this out myself so you might find this useful if you use Drop D tuning often. The Eddie Van Halen D-tuna is a device used on a Floyd Rose type tremolo system that allows you to raise the low E string tuned down to D to a E note.

How it works

So to start you need to back out the low E fine tuner screw on the top of your Floyd completely but don’t remove it. You will never use it as a fine tuner for the string. The next thing is to pull out the d-thna so it isn’t engaged and unlock the nut screw at the top for the E and A strings. Tune the low E string with the tunning gears to a D note and lock the screw once your in tune. Now, this could get tricky because when you lock it back up it goes sharp so it’s a fine dance to keep your D in tune. Once you get the D squared away you can engage the D-tuna to raise the note to E.

Now this is what I didn’t know. There is a small Allen screw on the side of the D-tuna that is used to fine tune the E note. You tighten or loosen the screw to make the string sharp or flat. Once you get that set you should be all good.

All you will need to do to switch back and forth is either pull out or push in on the D-tuna. If you do a lot of drop D tunings it is worth the effort.


It works best with a new set of stretched out strings for setup. Once the strings are stretched it is easier to fine tune the low E string. Also, the note will stay in tune longer while you play. I’ve noticed that each string change requires some fine adjustments.

Hope you like my post and it helped you out. Please check out my website for other things related to Brian’s Musical Box at My website!

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