Born with a Four-Inch Pompadour? Best Guitar Sites and How You Rock

Written by Marc Klempf — You know what they say. It takes all kinds. Whether you were born with a four-inch black pompadour or are a jazz artist named Lawrence who makes people call you Tyler — no matter what kind of guitarist you are — here are the best guitar sites online right now. Which one is best? See if you recognize yourself, below. It’s good to know yourself.

ED NOTE: This piece is not appropriate for family or in-office viewing. Adult language. And raging guitar. Rock on.

Let’s start with you, hipster. Yeah, I mean you and yeah, I called you a hipster. Live with it. You know a few chords, a few licks, a few songs. No big. But you and your Mahogany Martin D-42 never have ventured out of the safe confines of your bedroom. You wait for the right moment. Your time has come.

Totally is your first stop, for you and all you tall gangly hipsters who exude lonely boy charm. You’re the kind of guy Kate Upton would probably be dating if only she had a little more depth. You live in the desert and wear long sleeve flannel shirts 24/7 because Neil Young did. Dig it. Anyway, Neil had to dress like that because Winnipeg is 15 below. You have options.

For breadth and depth nothing else compares to It’s got some bang for the buck, too. You get cheap, pay-as-you-go lessons or select an annual membership to get access to hundreds of your favorite songs. Teacher Neil Hogan knows the folk rock genre inside out. Nine months of serious dedication and you’ll be playing in a CSN&Y tribute band. Then you’ll be able to tell Kate to take a hike. There are bigger fish to fry.


Rockabilly Bill. You think that’s a dorky name but you live with it. You were born with that four-inch black pompadour. You never take off your Ray Bans. Ever. The phrase “Let’s milk it,” from the Milk Cow Blues, is something you say any chance you get.

You believe real music died in 1958. You are the Keeper of the Flame, after all. You pray at the altar of Scotty Moore, Cliff Gallup and James Burton. Rockabilly rules. You have a Firebird Red Gretsch with a 16-inch rock maple action-flow neck, Bigsby vibrato tailpiece. You play through a Fender Tweed amp set to 11. Add your torn T-shirt and a bottle of Jack — and watch out. You’re ready to rumble.

It isn’t easy being so edgy. Whenever you talk about Eddie and someone happens to mention Van Halen, you freak and flash your switch blade. Still the advanced stuff wigs you out. And why — why — is everything always in lame E flat? Ask yourself that. And you’re the guy, Bill, who needs to head to right away to get all the answers you crave under that shiny black hairdo of yours.

You don’t do jazz bands but you worship at the Temple of Jazz. You thought about making a billion or two as a serial entrepreneur but, after thinking about it you figured: What the hell good is that? You’re an artist, dammit. You follow your muse all the way to the Blue Note, but you’re too cool to go in. Plus you couldn’t afford it. You only make 100 scoots a day as a high school librarian. But you are happier than a puppy with two peckers … so eat me. Tonight you’re putting the finishing touches on your 10,000 page screed — working title is Love, Life, God and Me: The Whole Goddamned Thing Abridged. But screw the novel. The busty barista down the street wants you … and she’ll have to wait, too.

That’s because you have another lover — it’s that blonde Gibson ES-175 that you hocked the 65-inch widescreen for and yes, it’s an original. Reissues are for sissies and wannabes. You nuzzle Gib’s neck with F Minor 9 chords. You kiss the jumbo frets with a two-note C5 harmony. And you finish her off with a blistering  A7sus2  run … and you tell her, “Hey, we’re just getting started, baby.” It’s you on jbguitarworkshop.comIt’s the holy grail for all aspiring jazz guitarists. “Hold on tight, sweetheart,” you’ll whisper. You’ll arpeggiate throughout the night, dawn be damned.

And no, I haven’t forgotten you, Gretchen. It’s true your parents gave you a witch’s name. But it’s appropriate. You cast a mean spell. You are a freckle-faced blonde with slate eyes and a willowy figure you hide under the ugliest navy blue bib overalls you could find in a second-hand store. Your bright wide smile is your secret weapon — that plus the heavy Opium perfume that has them smell you before they see you and drops your audience to its knees.

You sing like dusk should sound. And dusk is when you awaken. After the gig tonight, someone like me — and it might be me — will probably follow you home and, rather than knock, he’ll sit on your doorstep watching through an open window as you play your bright pink Chet Akins Country Man guitar. Your mean-ass-bluegrass licks tear my heart to shreds. And if there’s a heaven, Doc Watson is over there grinning and clapping. Woo wee! Tears come to the devil’s eyes — and it’s the devil himself who must’ve sent you over to in the bluegrass section.

Shine on Harvest Moon, darling.

Image credit: Wikimedia Commons. And click here for an amazing infographic showing 64 of the coolest guitars made in the last 100 years.For, I’m Marc Klempf.

Based in Atlanta, Marc Klempf is executive video producer for our upcoming tech, science, music, gadgets and mobile video channel. Hang on to your hats.