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Ernest Ranglin Interview 

Ernest Ranglin

MC: Being a guitar player myself you know, I wonder you know, I see and listen to you now, you do a lot of things which suite this music of course, where it's kind of bright sounding arpeggios, like major sounding arpeggios. But then you do your buzzing bee thing. So tell me about this buzzing bee thing, am curious now. What little scale patterns are you running over there, when you do your buzzing bee?

Ernest Ranglin:  Well it's a matter of, a guess dexterity to begin with, Colour you know.

MC:  You are trying to add colour you mean to the sound?

Ernest Ranglin:  Yes, yes because you couldn't just be walking up the street, just left right, left right, sometimes you need to say left---right, left---right you know what a mean?

MC: Not too regimented?

Ernest Ranglin:  No, so it's a nicer variety you know and then you couldn't have a picture with one colour, you have to have many colours, you know, so I guess that's the idea.

MC:  And that's one of your colours (Quick runs), and it's very unusual because nobody else does that quite like you that's for sure.  One and two of the others things maybe, but that one it's very much, it's you, when you buzz like a little bee.

Ernest Ranglin:  You are the second person who explains it like this; the first person was George Benson.

MC:  Was it?

Ernest Ranglin:  Yes!

MC:  Oh my god another guitar player (laughs); he said the same thing (laughs).  That's probably why; it takes one to know one.   We all like to buzz a little but you know.

Ernest Ranglin:  Its good fun, it keeps you active.

MC:  That brings me to another question, again thinking of magazine readers, they read and they like to enthuse about things.  Well of course they want to know the colour of your sax (laughs), but apart from this they might even want to know, I like this sound, how can I learn to play like this sound?  So did you ever do a tutor book?  Or a Video?

Ernest Ranglin:  Well you know all through the years I have done a lot of teaching, but I have a very strange way of teaching because you know I was self taught, and what I do, I generally let the guitar player play you know, and say just play for me let me see, and then I watch him and see where he is weak and then I give him lessons to strengthen that area.  So I give various, I don't have a special pattern that I say I start from and as different as they are, this is how I teach them.  But what I should have done is, every one of those people that I taught, I should have kept a copy of the lessons I gave them.  I just told them bring a book and as they go along, they improve and they have their book, but I never kept it.  So this is why I have never written a book so to speak you know.  I think of it but at the moment, at this time really it's a bit difficult to sit down and really spend that time.

MC:  You are going from pillow to post?

Ernest Ranglin:  Yes, so it's very hard

MC:  You are working hard you are travelling a lot.

Ernest Ranglin: Yes, and I even use to teach a lot of people too, but it's hard for me to do it now and the next thing too, I don't like to start a student and leave him like half way, it's very hard because you know, I think it's not a good thing. Then he has to try and find another teacher, it's a different style of teaching, so this is why I say, it's best to stop for while. Whenever I can find the time I may start again. For more reggae interviews and Mike Collins has set up a website for Mr Ernest Raglin that you should check out.

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