The road ends, but the journey continues...

Cleaning the Closet Reveals a Clever Classical Guitar Recording Tip

Laura Bruno Lilly with Prisloe classical guitar - practise selfie

Hello, hello from inside the mirror!

Hello, hello from inside the mirror! This is my attempt at a practice session selfie – using a dinosaur of a camera, no less. Notice the placement of the pillow, the height of the footstool and yes, indeed, those comfy tennies. This is my normal performance set up; albeit with a change of clothes and shoes.
It works.
However, in the recording studio, my beloved Dynarette pillow makes plastic-y squeaks during my playing as I tend to move a bit from time to time while I’m ‘in the moment’.
This is not a good thing.
Hardly noticeable by anyone on stage or off during a live performance, those squeaks wreak havoc to one’s ears while listening to playbacks of pieces played to perfection in the recording studio.
In my early attempts to silence those squeaks, I tried covering the plastic pillow with a cloth, but it only caused my guitar to slip and slide its way off its intended perch. Bottom line: getting rid of those squeaks meant getting rid of that Dynarette. But – how to replace its much needed function in the positioning of my guitar? Then I remembered an old trick: just hike up the footstool to its highest position. Once done, I quickly remembered why I had neatly forgotten that trick: it doesn’t do anything but complicate playability and crumple up one’s posture.
Back to square one.
Often when I am stumped, I’ll do something mindless, like say, clean house. So, I placed the Prisloe on its stand, turned around from the mirror, opened up our tiny clothes closet and began decluttering.
And what did I come across at first glance, but that pair of black patent leather shoes with the chunky 3 inch heels. That pair of shoes I hardly wear, but keep ‘just in case’.
Let me just say right here and right now, I have never ever been a high-heel type of gal. Especially the tall, pointy-sharp kind.  Wedgies, yes.  Pumps, yes.  And sometimes in an extreme circumstance, ones with chunky 3 inch heels. I’m not the most graceful lady on the planet and even less so while bumble-walking wearing skyscraper footwear.
Here in the South, that’s sacrilegious – Meh! – I’ve always been more of an Earth Shoe Mama.
Shoe & footstool set up for recording purposes only

shoe & footstool setup for recording purposes

Shoe, footstool, pillow for performing purposes

shoe, footstool & pillow setup for performance purposes

But here’s the thing: I got this wild idea to slip on that left foot black patent leather 3 inch chunky heeled shoe and try it on for size in tandem with my footstool.
Problem solved!

 How’s that for a clever classical guitar recording tip?

note: yep, I’m headed back into the recording studio for a brief session to resume work on my SwS project and Puffin Grant fulfillment


  1. Donna

    Squeaking would be bad during a concert. I too am an Earth shoe girl. Heels left when I left my office job. Nice selfie.

    • laura bruno lilly

      HA! Earth shoe reminisces over the Earth Day holiday – timely.
      And as for your compliment on the dino-camara selfie, thanks a bunch – coming from you it does really mean a lot.

  2. Anna Scott Graham

    Like you, I’m an earth shoe gal, but boy, if ever there was a moment for heels, that was it!

    • laura bruno lilly


  3. Andy

    I am thankful that I can still write poetry in heels 🙂

    • laura bruno lilly

      …as am I, Andy.

  4. Janis

    Genius! I think that’s just about the best use of high heels that I’ve ever seen.

    • laura bruno lilly

      -Hearty guffaw-
      Well, it certainly saved this pair from being donated to ARC!

  5. L. Marie

    Nice to see you, Laura! I enjoyed this look at the way you practice. I especially love that the problem was solved once you let it go and started cleaning. 🙂
    I hear you on the shoes. I’m not a heels person. I once turned my ankle while wearing a pair of heels. I’m more of a wedgie or clogs person.

    • laura bruno lilly

      Ahem, did my clever mirror photo give you any ideas for your own photo shoot for your blog? (hint-hint)
      Seems like we’re on the same wavelength when it comes to foot gear…

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