When amateur guitarist Michael Rays decided to learn one of his favorite guitar solos--from Deep Purple's "Highway Star"--he had no idea how long it would take. Months? Years?
The answer ended up being two years. Michael would practice--usually 20-45 minutes on a given day--and then immediately slide over to his computer and write about what had just happened: what he had practiced, how things were going, how he was feeling and anything else that came to mind.
The result is Guitar Odyssey--a psychological travelogue of a guitarist as he pursues something his natural talents don't easily allow. It's also a book about rock and roll, the learning process, pursuing goals and the hypnotic power songs can hold over an individual. For anyone familiar with the challenges of learning a difficult piece of music, Guitar Odyssey is a reminder of the thrill of the chase, and that good things come with patience, persistence and a positive attitude.
About the Author
Michael Rays grew up in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He graduated from Northwestern University and served nine years in the Navy, flying the SH-60B Seahawk helicopter. Michael lives in Billings, Montana with his wife and daughter.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
What amateur guitar player doesn’t have a signature song or a kick-ass mind-boggling guitar solo they can use to impress others? Guitar Odyssey is the tale of Michael Rays’ two-year battle mastering Ritchie Blackmore’s intricate, frenzied, one-and-a-half minute, crazy-fast, 168 BPM guitar-solo from Deep Purple’s, Highway Star. Rays details his two-year musical journey of late night, not-always-consistent practices to master and perfect the virtuoso’s solo. Rays’ journey is riddled with nagging, seemingly minute injuries (fingernails and ring finger tendons!), gear adjustments, and mental roadblocks, to overcome the impossible—dominating the solo. Humorous, introspective, technical, and at times, self-deprecating, Rays discovers perseverance, patience, and a positive attitude are what it takes to master an ass-kicking guitar solo and grow as a musician. Guitar Odyssey is a fun, quick, and enjoyable read, and hey, where else can one read rock & roll haikus?