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Fan Mail!!!

Believe it or not, we editors at Guitar One magazine receive personal letters every once in a while, either from concerned readers wishing to correct what they believe to be an error we printed, or to thank us for addressing/covering a subject that's close to their hearts.

Well, yesterday (27 August, 2001) I received what I regard as a very special letter. (It was sent to the magazine, then forwarded to me.) This letter was written by a gentleman who's approximately my same age and extremely passionate about playing guitar. He even lives in an area generally close to where I grew up (the Pacific Northwest). In my experience reading his letter, I walked away thinking it was (1) funny as hell, (2) interesting/illuminating, (3) pretty darned honest, and (4) kind of positive, all things considered.

Let me preface my “posting” of this letter by saying that IN NO WAY am I making this available for people to read for the purposes of ridiculing this guy, or anything of that sort. For now, I'm withholding his name and address, until I ask him (when I write him back, which I absolutely will) if it's okay with him to include it. Maybe somebody else in cyberspace can help him with his request (outlined in the letter's closing moments)? I'm not encouraging that, by the way, but I plan to (using my P.O. Box as the “return address,” naturally). What the heck?

You can click on the accompanying page numbers (e.g., “-1-”) to view the actual hand-written version of this letter (that particular page, anyway), or just read my “typed-out” version. (Note: He numbered his pages at the top, meaning if you want to view a particular page, click on the number that occurs above the text that's typed out below it.) Also, if you click on these “page number” links, the “.jpg” files will open in a new window. Make sure to click the “close box” once you're done reading.

Mind you, the typed translation of this letter retains the exact syntax used in the handwritten original (punctuation, spelling, etc.). This is not a “cheap shot” at him, but a form of compliment. How so? Because he spells WAY better than a lot of people I know. The “typed” version also includes references to images that can be viewed in the scans.




c/o Dale Turner

Dear Guitar One,

I was reading in your Sept 2001 issue & I came across [crossed out word] the “Riff Box” which starts on page 33.

I for one am a dedicated Metallica fan and I think they are the best ever on our planet. In fact I have all of their tablature music books that I received from “Music Dispatch”.

I am presently incarserated here in Oregon & my time is spent each and every day practicing only on an acoustic guitar but if you can imagine the amounts of time that I get to play it's defiantly more than anyone other than a proffesional musician. I have no life to live in here so I've dedicated my time to playing 8 to 10 hours a day. And I must say that I kick ass on an acoustic guitar as far as Metallica's music.

Anyway, my concern to your Riff Box is that on page 34 — figure 4. “Blackened”.

I got out my “And Justice


For All” book which is not a false book. It's an authorized edition by Guitar / For the practicing musician.

Your transcription of “Blackened” is different from what mine shows in my book.

Believe me sir, I'm not saying that for no other reason than to find correction.

Let me point out the differences so we can see what's going on. Your speed shows 192, mine shows 182.

The 4 measures you show consist of a progression of [crossed out letters] excuse me, E-F-[“A#” crossed out]/Bb notes in the first 3 measures and Bb5 followed by F#-G-B-C-C-F notes in the last measure.

I'm gonna draw you the measures of the version in my book so you can see the difference between the two.


[Refer to graphic in scan]

The 2 measures are exactly what follows the beginning of the first 8 measures of the backwards lead guitar at the start of the song.

As you can see the notes used on the D string & G string are E F Bb which is the same notes in your transcription except they are in different positions. Would this be considered to be a octave change?

Also you will notice that the 6 note scale pattern at the end of measure 2 is (Low E) - F# G G# (A) - C C# D.

I'm hoping that you may take it upon yourself to actually put a guitar in your hands and play the two measures above then play your transcription then if possible listen to the C.D.

Unfortunately I cannot have any C.D.'s or tapes but I've


heard that song enough that it's stuck in my head 4 life! Our local radio station plays what they call “Mandatory Metallica” every night at midnight. They play 4 songs so we get to hear alot of Metallica and I'm the faithfull fan who nevers missed a night of them. I fall asleep after the songs but the songs remain in my sub-conscience thoughts and I re-play them at will.

No I'm not a weirdo, I just love music and I choose the style of Metallica.

Anyway back to the Riffs I've been discussing. I've played your transcription & it does not sound right when played in place of my books version then on into the rest of the song. And no where throughout the song does this transcription come about.

I'm truly concerned, as you can see from my long letter, about the difference. There has to be an explanation and nothing would please me


more than for you to take the time to write me back and explain this difference. I'm very hungry for an answer sir.

My friend let me look at his [“guitar” crossed out] Guitar One magazine that's how I read the article.

I cannot afford a subscription sorry to say but I really wish I could get one. Is there any way possible Dale that I could get a subscription or any back issues from last year or any old 90's one's? I have no money at the present time but I will have in the near future from working here in prison. I have no job yet as they are hard to get in here. I have no one in the free world to help me either. I'm in here for Robbery because of drugs and I'm 33 years old but look like I'm 20. I'm a long haired Metallica headbanger for real!

I have 11 more years


to serve and it's hard to face this sometimes because I'm talented musically and I believe that I could be a force to be reckoned with with a ESP explorer & a wall of Marshall's! Ha But reality of my long prison term is I live day to day and I do the best I can with what I have. I don't or cannot feel sorry for myself, I refuse. My guitar is my escape, the only possession that I hold dear besides my Metallica books.

Man, can I write a letter or what? I must be lonely or something! Ha I have no one else to write so I'm kinda lonely I guess you could say my penmanship sucks, sorry.

I hope my crazy letter doesn't make me look like a geek or nutcase to you? My intentions are only to broaden my musical interest and hell make you laugh a little while your hard at work.

I must close this letter cause I don't want to


be a pest sir.

Your articles were fantastic & I enjoyed the insight on Metallica's road to fame. I learned a few things I never knew about them. Maybe you have some old issues with Metallica articles in them, anything about them for all that matters, that maybe you can send me? Photo's & such? I can't have stickers or posters. Just books and photo's. Any books sent must be 1st or 2nd class mail only or I won't get them.

I look forward to hearing from you Dale when you get some time to write me. Maybe we could even write to each other every once in awhile? I'd enjoy that. I write to no other person on the planet.

Thanks for your time & your assistance. I deeply appreciate any help you can offer me Dale. Have a great day alright?

P.S. Please remember me Dale!

Respectfully Submitted


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