Canadian Musician - May/June 2023 | Page 51

I started practicing scales and learning more theory . These days , I continue to learn new songs and practice technique , but I also spend time experimenting and improvising to develop my own style .
CM : These days , do you have a practice routine you generally follow ?
Lopez : Yes , I try to practice for at least an hour every day , but it depends on my schedule , usually in the morning or early afternoon when I have the most energy . Either way , if I ’ m not practicing a routine , I will be playing guitar while recording , performing or creating content in general . I might practice scales or chords , work on a new song , or experiment with different techniques . I also like to listen to music and try to pick out the guitar parts by ear , which helps me develop my ear training skills .
CM : Do you have a favorite guitar or piece of gear ? Anything with a sentimental meaning or great story behind it ?
Lopez : One of my favorite guitars is my Schecter Blackhawk . It has a fantastic sound and feel , and it also has a lot of sentimental value to me . I received it as a gift from one of my closest friends when I was growing up in Miami , Florida . We started playing music together when we were just kids , and when I moved to Canada at the age of 13 , he gave me the guitar as a farewell gift . I ’ ve used it on countless stages , in various studios , and in music videos throughout the years . In fact , I ’ ve even stripped off the black paint to reveal the natural wood of the guitar , so it now has a unique look that sets it apart . Overall , it ’ s not just a great instrument , but also a treasured reminder of my roots in music and the enduring friendships that can be formed through it .
CM : What advice would you give to newer players for improving their craft ?
Lopez : I would say to practice consistently and to not be afraid to make mistakes . Learning to play the guitar takes time and patience , and it ’ s important to enjoy the process rather than focusing solely on the end result . It ’ s also helpful to listen to a wide variety of music and to try to learn
from different guitar players and styles . In addition , I think it ’ s important to get together with other musicians and learn to jam . Playing with others can help you develop your timing , communication , and improvisation skills , and it ’ s also a lot of fun . So , don ’ t be shy about reaching out to other musicians and finding opportunities to play together .
CM : What is one instrument or piece of gear you ’ d next like to acquire ?
Lopez : I ’ ve had my eye on the Kemper Amp for a while now , and it ’ s definitely at the top of my wish list . It ’ s a digital modeling amplifier that can replicate the sounds of a wide range of vintage and modern amps , as well as provide a lot of flexibility for tone shaping and effects . I still love huge amps and always will , but I think it would be a game-changer for my live performances , since I could have access to all my desired amp sounds without having to lug around multiple amps . Plus , it would be a lot of fun to experiment with all the different options and create custom tones .