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William Gray
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  • Portland, OR
  • United States
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William Gray's Discussions

Best Acoustic Guitar Case for Airplane Travel?
3 Replies

I have a Gator ATA case which I've used about a half-dozen times to transport an acoustic guitar as checked baggage.  Although I've never had a problem in the 6 or 7 times I've checked the Gator…Continue

Tags: Damage, Airlines, Case, Travel

Started this discussion. Last reply by Kerry Krishna Apr 29, 2010.

What's Up With Gordon Lightfoot?
15 Replies

I was born in 1950, so I remember all the Gordon Lightfoot hits of the 70's, but though I liked his music, I never thought of him as a guitar player, and I certainly never associated him with…Continue

Started this discussion. Last reply by William Gray Jul 4, 2010.

Heavy Picks Anyone?
39 Replies

When I started playing acoustic guitar about a year ago, I felt most comfortable with medium gauge picks.  Thins were clearly too flimsy and heavys just seemed too stiff.  But as time went by I…Continue

Tags: blanchard, tone, speed, picks

Started this discussion. Last reply by Arthur Knowler Feb 18, 2017.

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Latest Activity

David Wayne Martin replied to William Gray's discussion Heavy Picks Anyone?
"I got my Wegen Bluegrass Picks and started using them - and I can really see the difference - very happy I made the switch!.  With the beveled edge, this forces me to maintain the correct grip rather than the way the medium pick was moving in…"
Jul 18, 2016
William Gray replied to William Gray's discussion Heavy Picks Anyone?
"I'm still using the Wegen TF-120.  I have yet to find anything that produces a better tone on my Martin acoustics, and the last so much longer than standard picks do, they're worth the price.   I started playing electric guitars…"
Jul 14, 2016
David Wayne Martin replied to William Gray's discussion Heavy Picks Anyone?
"When I first got started, I got one of the Steve Kauffman Homespun tapes where he recommended a medium pick, so that's what I've always used.  However, now that I am reading these posts and trying to really improve rather than just…"
Jul 14, 2016
William Gray updated their profile
Dec 11, 2011
Michael Creamer left a comment for William Gray
"Cool picks at Elderly http://elderly.com/accessories/items/PKAGJ-M.htm this model is the same material as Clayton pics but I like the design and grip better.  the tone is very close to my fingernails, just bigger. but I have no idea…"
Jun 13, 2011
Bryan Floyd replied to William Gray's discussion Heavy Picks Anyone?
"I find this as well, Warren.  When I'm singing folk tunes, just me and my guitar, I find I have to find a different (quieter) pick other than my Red Bears or else the guitar is overbearing.  I also find nylon works best for…"
Jan 8, 2011
Sharon Mabe replied to William Gray's discussion Heavy Picks Anyone?
"That makes total sense. I like the picking technique you have on your video too, about having very little tip exposed outside of your fingers. I couldn't get anywhere with the methods I'd seen before, people telling me to "dig in…"
Jan 7, 2011
Sharon Mabe replied to William Gray's discussion Heavy Picks Anyone?
"I had a Red Bear and used it for 2 or 3 months, then got frustrated and went back to a Martin medium pick, but had trouble holding onto it, like it kept slipping out of my grip. Then I bought a Wegen 140 after a friend recommended it. I've been…"
Jan 7, 2011
William Gray replied to William Gray's discussion Heavy Picks Anyone?
"Well, it's been about 10 months since I posted this discussion item and I sure do appreciate the suggestions and opinions that everyone has shared.  I have been using a Wegen TF120 for several months and I really like it.  I like the…"
Dec 31, 2010
Paul Allopenna replied to William Gray's discussion Heavy Picks Anyone?
"Clay, I'm curious: you find that the 35 Bluechip doesn't flex? I just got a KS 40 and it seems like a great pick, but even as small as it is I feel a very slight flex to it."
Dec 31, 2010
Clay Hess replied to William Gray's discussion Heavy Picks Anyone?
"I use a small triangle blue chip .87 mm (35) pick. No flex is good!!! If your pick flexes, it flexes differently because the strings are all different gauges more/less tension."
Dec 25, 2010
Brian N Fuller replied to William Gray's discussion Heavy Picks Anyone?
"Hi William - I'm a bit behind on this discussion but have spent time on similar quests for the optimal pick. I've been really happy  with Dunlop XL Jazz III series. Make sure you order the XL version since the standard series requires…"
Dec 10, 2010
Mauro Samuel replied to William Gray's discussion Heavy Picks Anyone?
"I´m using a Heavy C shape Red Bear pick with speed bevels. It´s the best pick I ever used. In my opinion It improved a lot my guitar´s tone."
Nov 23, 2010
Bryan Floyd replied to William Gray's discussion Heavy Picks Anyone?
"I agree. A pick is to the guitarist as a bow is to a violinist. In the violin world, it has been said to spend approx. 10% the price of the violin on the bow - i.e. if the violin cost $1000 the bow should be about $100 (and I've seen bows that…"
Nov 13, 2010
William Gray replied to William Gray's discussion Heavy Picks Anyone?
"I can relate to what you're saying about buying quality items and taking care with them. A good pick can last a long time and is worth spending more to get the one that works best for your style and approach. When I think about all the money we…"
Nov 13, 2010
Jeff Hale replied to William Gray's discussion Heavy Picks Anyone?
"I have enjoyed the Wegen TF 140 I've been playing. It's 1.4mm tri-pick, with great beveled edges on all corners. It has helped with my speed, and the tone is better than the thinner picks I had been using. The tone is thicker, and there is…"
Oct 25, 2010

Profile Information

Favorite Flatpickers
Too many to mention
Favorite Flatpicking Tunes
Too many to mention.
Favorite Guitars
Martin Vintage Series and Golden Era Dreadnaughts
Tell us more about yourself (place a Bio here if you wish)
Getting back into old-time country and bluegrass music after many years lost in the wake of the British Invasion (you old folks will remember that!). I still love those great Beatles songs. But my family roots are in the hills of Tennessee and Virginia, and I think that music got in my bones somehow.

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Comment Wall (10 comments)

At 12:30am on March 15, 2010, Steve Blanchard said…
Hi William,

Any chance we can get together and pick??? Let me know.

Steve
At 10:55am on March 15, 2010, Steve Blanchard said…
Hi William,

Yes, we should get together soon. Don't worry about where your playing is, just worry about where it's going to be. I never let my students set ceilings for themselves. Learning goes in stages and learning how to break things down in digestible forms..just like learning to read. I think I maybe able to help you make some real progress.

Thanks for the kind words about my playing and Prairie Flyer, I hope you make it out to somemore festivals this year. Give a call and lets set up some picking time...(503) 730-0005 Cell. All the best...Steve
At 1:52pm on March 16, 2010, Steve Blanchard said…
Hey William,

Come out to Forest Grove and we could have lunch and pick. Don't worry about your playing...besides I take on beginners if they are ambitious. Most beginners are just too lazy at first and I don't have the patience with them if they are wasting their time and my time. I sit with you and teach ya....just buy lunch.
At 1:01pm on March 17, 2010, Steve Blanchard said…
Hey William,

Let's shoot for 12:00-12:30 on the 18th ( tomorrow) or Thursday next week. Let me know...I couldn't remember when your gone to Mexico...Tomorrow is fine with me.
At 8:43am on March 24, 2010, Dan Miller said…
William,

I had my web guy work on the problem with the crosspicking FAQ and it is fixed now. Check it out and see if you can view the tabs now.
Thanks,

Dan
At 6:25am on March 27, 2010, ganon said…
William, saw your query on Norman Blake fans- for me, 'Back Home in Sulphur Springs' is right up there with WB4B.
At 2:30pm on March 27, 2010, ganon said…
Do you learn it (Jimmy Brown) just by listening and watching? That is still pretty much beyond me, but I need to try sooner (rather that later), and it might be a good place to begin.
At 3:50pm on March 27, 2010, ganon said…
Thanks William - sounds like a reasonable approach. Turns out I have the video ( on the DVD 'Legends of Flatpicking Guitar') and Dan Miller has a basic version in Flatpicking Essentials Vol. 2, and a more advanced improvisational version with Tim May in Vol. 5 (which really sounds a lot like quintessential Norman). So I'm well armed - just need to find lots of time.
At 2:15pm on June 1, 2010, Steve Blanchard said…
hey William,
Give me a call. 503 730-0005. I'll probably just drive to Spokane than take the train.

Steve
At 9:12pm on June 13, 2011, Michael Creamer said…

Cool picks at Elderly

http://elderly.com/accessories/items/PKAGJ-M.htm

this model is the same material as Clayton pics but I like the design and grip better.  the tone is very close to my fingernails, just bigger.

but I have no idea what tortoise shell sounds like...

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I saw a video in which Norman discussed why he preferred a certain fret when refretting one of his Martin's. I am about to refret my D-35 Martin, and I would like to know if anyone remembers a video in which Norman discusses his choice over the Frets Martin uses. Thank You.7See More
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