Adam Rafferty – Guitar and Spirit

All about music, guitar, spirituality, personal development and being happy


When You Change One Thought You Change Everything

Yesterday I heard a fascinating message from author and lecturer Gregg Braden as I was looking for interesting quantum-physics type stuff on youtube.

Mr. Braden talks often about the “holgraphic nature” of the universe. Before you start yawning and thinking this is about to be “quantum dribble” read on – this affects you right now and has for your entire life!

You may have seen a holograph on a keychain. Due to light inteference patterns a 3D image is created on a 2D surface. Don’t ask me to explain this to you.

By the way they’ve now figured out how to do this with people – this is too much… Princess Leia, watch out!

What’s fascinating about holographs is that every part of the holograph has the entire image in it….see exceprt from

‘Appropriately enough, the word hologram comes from the Greek words holos,  “whole,” and gramma,  “message.” If a hologram is cut into pieces, each piece projects the entire image, but as if viewed from a smaller subset of angles. ‘

Gregg Braden adds:

‘A holograph is whole and complete unto itself, while is part of an even greater pattern. For example, one cell of your body is whole and complete, and has all the info needed to create another body.’

Wow. Reality gets even weirder when you consider the spiritual implications. If we look at consciousness as holographic in nature, then we are truly one, all viewing reality from a different angle. Just like your finger and nose are not separate…neither are all of us.

Braden goes further and says:

“Anyplace in a hologram where one change is made, it is mirrored throughout the rest of the Hologram.”

Okay…actually this is what caught my attention…if all of what has said thus far is true, one can assume that:

Anything You do or think changes everything
Anything You do or think changes your life
Anything You do or think affects everybody else

The old way of thinking about a “separate me” and the idea that you can do something “in secret” gets blown out of the water. Everything affects everything.

It’s also inspiring to know that engaging (or not engaging) in an activity or thought pattern even just a little bit, will change your life…for example these quick little things will change everything your life:

for better…
10 minutes of meditation
30 minutes of exercise
positive self talk
listening to uplifting music
cleaning up the house

for worse…
having one cigarette
watching violent or graphic tv or video
negative self talk
giving into laziness
believing you are separate from others

It’s just amazing to think that itty bitty little things affect our whole lives and everyone around us.

It certainly inspires me to “straight up and fly right” more and more knowing that what I think are my “silent thoughts” could and do affect people all over the globe.

Any little thing you do changes everything.

Anything you do effects everyone.

Your truth is broadcast everywhere.

There is nowhere to hide.

Until next time, keep swingin!!!




Guitar Spotlight: Soenke Meinen

On my last tour in Germany I made it over to the Frankfurt Musik Messe and hung out in the Acoustic Guitar “Section” of the fair. Maton Guitars, Lakewood Guitars and Acoustic Music were all within walking distance of each other.

It was a blast!!! Since I play Maton guitars as my primary instrument, I spent quite a lot of time over by them.

Then I stumbled upon this fellow, Soenke Meinen who blew me away. Here is exactly what I saw and heard:

Soenke Meinen – Caravan & Cannonball Rag

Soenke and I chatted. He knew me from youtube, so we took turns playing at the booth. What a nice kid! And he’s young. Uh oh, us semi-old farts had better keep practicing! 🙂

As legend has it, Soenke was a devoted classical guitar student and at precisely the time that his teacher fell ill and announced he could no longer teach him, Soenke just happened to go to a Tommy Emmanuel concert for the first time.

The rest is history, or at least the beginning of it!

What struck me about Soenke was the calm, relaxed, poise with which he plays. His technique was “poetry in motion” – which is something I strive for. I could hear a depth and a knowledge of music.

A lot of young players these days start out by playing “Tommy” – which really is fine. We all climb the musical mountain in different ways. In Soenke’s case I was really excited to hear a kid with great technique and a solid grasp of harmony and proper voice leading – and a lyricism that touched my heart.

He played a bunch of original songs when I heard him. They were very Tommy Emmanuel “inspired”. Maybe a voicing here and there, a strum here and there were reminiscent of the great Tommy…but the “compositions” were his and there is a serious composer here!

Sonke has a great sense of song form and melody. The phrasing makes sense…in fact – I truly would love to learn some of the kid’s songs! He’s the real thing.

See what I mean here, here are 2 of his originals:

Oldenburg Donnerschwee

Snowflakes in the Summertime

Soenke surprised me the just other day, via Youtube. He smashed a bunch of my licks and ideas together, then added his own magic…and created a tune called “Adam’s Groove”. Here is a live version of it. (Dang, he’s gigging with this tune…that deserves a 2nd thank you)

Adam’s Groove

Thanks Soenke!

Soenke’s Myspace:
Soenke’s Twitter:

I’m still looking for his homepage….


Guitar Practice Techniques to Program Your Subconcious Mind

Greets friends! I am back in the oven known as August in New York after a very nice 14 days on the west coast.

An interesting thing happened at a guitar class/lecture/performance and I’d like to share it with you. My good friend Frank teaches an evening guitar class at a college in the Bay Area, and I got to do a Q&A and playing session for one of his classes.

I find it hard to speak and perform in the same setting. It’s like I don’t know whether I am in the left brain or right brain zone. When I finally got down to performing that night, I had what I consider to be an unacceptable memory slip on a tune that I have played a million times – “Billie Jean”. Partially because of the mental zone, but also due to preparation.

Recently I upgraded the chorus to fit the phrasing of the original song better, and the newer different fingering was new enough that it still required conscious control. I had yet to get the new fingering into the subconscious so that the fingers just “go there”.

I don’t think anyone else except Frank knew. My mind went blank for a split second for the fingering of the chorus of the song due to the newness of the fingering. I played the melody with chord forms under it and got right back on…but I thought to myself “I gotta drive this down even deeper into my subconscious – first thing tomorrow!”

I wasn’t angry, did not beat myself up, and the performance was just fine from the audiences point of view. However, this flaw was to be addressed in my next practice sessions.

(There’s nothing like performing to show you what you need to practice 🙂

I decided to use some of the techniques I’ve learned from success coach Brian Tracy to drive this tune deep to the level of never ever botching it ever again. These motivational techniques are nice to “hear” but I decided to use them and see if they worked any differently from standard “practicing”.

Here’s a recent video of Billie Jean live where I am in performance mode! No problems here….just a lot of heat that day:

1) Make it the #1 Priority

Sounds simple, but I made this the #1 priority in my life for a few days. It’s one of my most requested tunes, so it deserves this attention. How often do we know we need to make something a priority and then allow small things to get in the way? This was (and is still) priority #1 until it is bulletproof.

2) Use Positive Self Talk

I carefully guarded my speech and said over and over “I play Billie Jean perfectly. I nail it to the wall. My version of Billie Jean is flawless.”

I gave energy to the positive vision, not the negative. You dig?

3) Visualization

I went to sleep visualizing the right left hand fingering. This was hard!!! Every time I woke up out of sleep, I tossed and turned and only visualized the right fingering! I flooded my mind with the right visual.

4) Practice in 15 Minute Time Chunks

Brian Tracy says somewhere that our minds pick up the most at the beginning and end of practice sessions. I practiced for a few days, and for each 15 minute chunk of practice I played the chorus to Billie Jean. 15 minute chunks do more for your mind than an hour straight he says.

That’s it. Practice makes perfect…now get to work!!!! As soon as I hit the post button it’s practice time.

– Adam