Guitarists of Singapore (GOS) - Sheng Li



Age: 28

Occupation: Full-time Product Manager / Part-time Guitarist

Style: Acoustic

No. of years of playing the guitar: 10 years

No. of hours spent on the guitar per week: 10 hours

Guitar/ music qualifications: Self-taught - I beg, borrow & steal ideas!

Gig/ competition experience: Still waiting for my big break



How did you get acquainted with guitar playing?


I really love acoustic music, and the acoustic guitar was the easiest way for me to get started. I believe it was also during army / JC days where I met many friends who played the guitar - that really got me wanting to try playing.


Describe your first experience playing on a guitar.


Pain!!! I started on the acoustic guitar, so it's always the numbing pain on your fingertips that gets you. Unfortunately for many, that's one of the reasons they quit. But if there's one thing I can say, the pain will go away much quicker than you expect, and the music you get will be so worth it :)


What is the best thing about being a guitarist?


It's gotta be jamming with friends. I'm regularly surprised by my friends who can sing / play another instrument. It's an amazing way to connect with other people.


Describe your most memorable guitar-related incident.


I played 2 recent gigs - one for a birthday party and the other at a company opening. As the night went on and people got more comfortable, they started coming up to sing a song. The next thing you know, more and more people stepped out of their comfort zone, and came up to sing for their friends & colleagues.


Both gigs were like that - it was so natural and amazing at the same time. In the end, people were dancing and singing along at the top of their lungs... It's incredible how music brings people together!


How many guitars do you currently own?


3 acoustic guitars & 1 ukulele. Martin D-18 Sycamore, Taylor GS Mini-e Koa, Fina FD-802, aNueNue Gerald Ross III CE Tenor Ukulele.


If your house is on fire, which one would you run out with? Why?


The Martin of course. On second thoughts, maybe I'll use this as an excuse to buy a new guitar :P


First guitar: Oh man I remember this... It's a Maestro ED-2. This was probably in 2006 when I first started.


Favourite guitar brand/ model: I really like Goodalls, but my bank account strongly disagrees.


Favourite guitarist: Tommy Emmanuel!!!



First song you learned to play on guitar: I don't remember this unfortunately.


Song you love to play most on guitar: Jason Mraz - Beautiful Mess. It's very emotional and allows me to get in the zone. I still get goosebumps playing this song, especially when it's with a really good singer.


Most difficult song you have played on guitar: Any Tommy Emmanuel song... Guitar Boogie? It's impossible!!!


Tips for aspiring guitarists: Playing an instrument is unlike learning math... You've got to start feeling it, then the rest will follow. Put your emotions into it, because once you have that, the rest is easy. You'll be playing all day before you know it! Especially if you're on Chords Haven.


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