Top Ten Things to know before you marry a Guitar Player

coupleMy wife is awesome! She gets my guitar obsession and quirks now, but it took her a while to get there.

She spent years scratching her head wondering what the hell was wrong with me. Is this madness ever going to end?

Guitar players are a unique breed.  At first, you might think it will be fun to date the guy from the band. You’ll tell yourself, wow, he has so much passion and emotion for music. He will bring all that passion to our relationship. He will always play for me and write songs about me, about our love, etc. And, oh, those fingers. They are so dexterous.

But, the reality is, it is not so glamorous living with/marrying an obsessed guitar player. Here are 10 things you should know before you decide to commit. Consider yourself warned.

1. You will step on sharp things

Have you ever stepped on a small lego piece? Well, imagine stepping on a piece of guitar string with a sharp skin-piercing edge. When we break or change strings, little sharp pieces fall to the floor and lay there patiently waiting to connect with an innocent bare foot.

2. At times, you will feel like you’re low on his priority list

Guitar players love their guitars and love their bands. Anything that threatens either will be met with a childish scorn.

3. You will wonder how many guitars does he really need

We love guitars. As soon as we get a new one, we are fantasizing about the next 2 or 3. We can justify each purchase with silly statements like “it’s one of a kind”, “it has a special tone that none of my others do”, “it will round out my collection nicely”, blah, blah, blah. Same thing is true with guitar pedals, amps and other guitar goodies. This obsession will not end, so you have to get used to it.

4. You will catch him posing in front of the mirror

We sometimes like to pretend we’re rock stars. When nobody is around and we have our guitar strapped on in front of the mirror, we get inspired to do some rock poses. It might be cute or funny at first, but it doesn’t go away. Eventually it becomes weird or creepy, especially as we age, get fat and bald.

5. Guitar shit will be everywhere

We leave guitars, pedals, cables, picks, cases, stands, amps all over the place. Even if you agree to find a space for all his stuff, it will eventually find its way to the rest of the house.

6. He will never give up on the dream completely

Most of us start playing because we idolize our guitar heroes and want to become one of them. We start a band, practice, play, get burned out after it goes nowhere and break up. Then we start another band, practice, play, and break up. It goes on and on. As we get a little older and have other responsibilities, like kids and careers, we let those dreams fade. But often, it’s still there dormant until something or someone triggers a switch, and we’re back at it. But, this time, we say that we’re doing it just for fun or to make a few extra bucks. But, secretly, we’re still dreaming that we will get discovered and “make it” even though there’s no chance in hell.

7. He will be cocky, but not in a good way

Most of us guitar players think we’re better than we actually are. We learn a new song, riff or solo, and we think that we’re the shit. We all of a sudden feel the need to share the song or riff with everyone. We start playing it, totally mangle every note, say, “wait”, and start again. We do this over and over and the song sounds nothing like the original. In our heads it was perfect. But, your poor ears have to suffer. And, you have to see us in this vulnerable, clumsy, fumbling, unattractive state.

  8. If he’s good, he won’t play for you. If he’s not, he will…all the time

Related to #7, if he gets full of himself, he will play for you often and think that he’s doing something nice for you. But, you would rather hear him say sweet nothings to you or have him take you out somewhere. However, if he is really good, he will probably not play specifically to you. If he writes amazing music, he will be even worse. It’s best to leave him be and listen to him while he doesn’t know you’re listening. Or, when you go see him play live, dance in front of him and pretend you’re his number one groupie.

9. He will have at least a few loser friends that will be a bad influence on him

If he’s a rock dude and playing with other musicians, it’s likely that some of them are life-long dreamers with no real jobs or sense of reality. They might still think they’re rock stars and will try to live the lifestyle even though they’re nobodies. Some will do drugs. Some will be or try to be players. Some will just be annoying and it all might rub off on your man.

10. He will not age well, especially if he is a rock guy

There will come a time when he will lose his hair, get fat, go gray, and morph into something awkward. If he tries to rock any of his old clothing, hair styles or jewelry, it will look disturbing. If he has tattoos, they will start looking like a skin disease. What once made you huff and puff, will now make you laugh and barf.

There are very few that have pulled of the  cool rock dude look at an older age . Bono, Nikki Sixx, Sting, and a handful of others are still cool and hip. Robert Plant, David Crosby, and most of the older musicians that you’ll find at your local bar playing bad versions of classic rock to an empty room…not so much.

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So, ladies. if you’re going to get serious with a guitar player, let this be a warning to you.

5 comments

  1. Actually, I wrote this and all of it is either from personal experience or from some of my friends’ experiences. I have been playing for 30 years.

  2. As a guitar player I Gotto call bullshit. What you describe is the life of a wannabe rocker. I own 3 guitars, 1 elec, 1 acoustic, and 1 harp guitar. Don’t need more. Pedals are for those who need it. Influential friends? Again what you described was fake rockers. I doubt any of them, and for that matter based on your article, not even you can be regularly found wearing a tux playing asturias for the high class.

    You should change this article to “dating a rocker” because the vast majority of guitar players are simply not into rock. You have a very barrow view of the world of guitar, and such opinions really fuck shit up for real guitarists.

    1. Fair point for a couple of the items, but I still think the others apply to most guitarists. I did add “if a rock dude” to qualify the Loser friends point #9. All these points are generalizations of course. But in my opinion, they’re close to reality for a good percentage of players based on the experience of most guitar players I know, and the ones that post in many of the guitar forums. But anyways, this is not meant to be a serious article and I thought that was kind of obvious.

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