Reply To: Any trouble singing??

October 7, 2013 at 10:31 pm

Hi Roddy

I know how you feel. I had GBS and the first time I tried to sling a guitar on it nearly pulled me face first into the floor. The weight of a solidbody combined with my absence of balance was a recipe for disaster. Then, I tried playing seated, but the strings felt like knife edges on my fingertips. I never gave up and I’m glad.

I was a good rhythm player before GBS and I was the singer in a cover band. I do alright now. Barre chording was the hardest to get back. Even just the power chord formation (think Johnny Ramone) lead to a painful cramping through my thumb and down into my wrist. Making physical adjustments helped.

During GBS, my hands went first and were the hardest hit. I have remaining axonal damage, which I am told I’m gonna have to live with. Sometimes, I have difficulty feeling the fingertips on my fretting (left) hand. On my right hand, I have found that I can’t play without a pick that has some ‘thumb-grip’. I use a brand called ‘Brain’ Picks, they have a texture that feels like a cat’s tongue.

I have also found that getting my guitars in ‘ship-shape’ playing condition helped a lot. Tidy frets, clean and oiled fretboard are a must. Polish the neck to keep the palm from dragging. I seem to play better on new strings, my fingers drag less, so I change them often. Finish matters as well. I find that the Gibson nitro finish is slicker than a poly finish.

Dude, give it some time. I think you must be feeling frustrated. Playing the guitar is hard enough when healthy. Just don’t give up playing. Prepare to sound like shite a lot of the time. Do a lot of hand stretching (great vids on this on youtube).

The drinking and smoking will be up to you. Neither helped my musical abilities; I stopped smoking years ago. Smoking regularly also messes with your blood circulation; that can’t be good for recovery. You show some positive signs (99% vision return, playing soon after MF descent) so I am hopeful for you. Hopefully, fatigue will lessen (quitting smoking will help this a lot) and you will be jamming as good as ever.

One guitarist to another, all the best to you!