Welcome Shadows & Hank Marvin Fans (or is it ‘tragics’)
Hi – I’m Ron, 76 years young (well I like to think so) and retired from a long and enjoyable full time working life of over 60 years.
I am enjoying every minute of retirement and lead a lucky and very full life, with my lovely wife Elizabeth of 52 years and spend my time playing Shadows music, writing tabs, gardening and looking after my 65 year old bonsai collection. As well as a couple of fishing trips and cruises to the Pacific islands and New Zealand with our adult children and grand children a couple of times a year (budget allowing)
I have been a Shadows & Hank B Marvin dedicated fan for over 60 years and still to this day love playing and writing tabs for their music.
I was born in Sydney, Australia in May 1945. I was very fortunate to have had parents who introduced me to the marvellous world of music at the tender age of seven when they took me to a Police Citizens Boys Club in Leichhardt a Sydney suburb to see their Junior Brass Band. I subsequently joined the band and spent the next few years learning to read and play ‘Marching Band’ music on the cornet and trumpet. I was an active member of the Brass Band for 5 years until the age of twelve (1956).
About that time, I discovered Rock & Roll music of the likes of Bill Haley, Buddy Holly, Genie Vincent, The Big Bopper, Elvis etc. and a friend introduced me to the electric guitar. Buying a guitar in Australia in that era was out of the question – far to expensive for the average worker. So dad (who was a marine engineer) and I built one and an amplifier from a valve radio. Used it for many years until I could afford a ‘proper’ guitar (still could not afford a stratocaster) From there I never looked back and over the next few years learned more and more about the guitar and playing Rock & Roll music – loved it.
In 1959 at the age of 15 I first heard The Shadows ‘Apache’ on Sydney radio. I was in awe and it changed my musical direction forever. I was then and I am still to this day a ‘Shadows’ and Hank Marvin dedicated fan and Like many other guitarists of that era I became a lifelong dedicated Hank Marvin Wannabe’. Always relentlesly striving to emulate ‘That Sound’
Over the years I have acquired most of the gear needed to get close to the Shadows sound. Stratocaster guitars, Vox amps, various echo units etc. But early on I recognised that apart from the right equipment a major component of ‘that sound’ was the playing style of Hank Marvin. His unique style incorporates many distinct and subtle aspects. The obvious ones are his use of the Tremolo arm or ‘Whammy Bar’, the prolific use of ‘double stops’ and an unusual upstroke picking method. But that’s not all. He doesn’t just play the notes. He applies some unique phrasing to his work using many different techniques such as bends, pre-bends, hammer-on, pull-off, and many others to impart to his music a ‘singing quality’
Thirty years ago, I started writing guitar ‘Tabs’ not just to document the notes but more importantly the phrasing of those notes and where on the ‘neck’ they are best played. Over the intervening years I have written many tabs for the Shadows and Hanks tunes. I am still writing them to this day. Some tabs take a few days to produce while others can take weeks or months to perfect – or at least try to.
I enjoy playing my strats and writing tabs every day. In 2010, I decided to build a website to enable other guitarists to use my tabs. That website Shadstabs.net allowed all users free download of all my tabs but unfortunately on a very limited retirement income I discovered that I could no longer sustain the costs of operatin that free site.
I decided in June 2017 as an alternative to doing nothing to rewrite the SHADSTABS site and add pay for tab to the site to try and at the very least cover the operating costs of SHADSTABS. The new site Shadstabs.com was born where for a small charge my tabs can be directly downloaded. I hope you continue to use and enjoy my tabs and I hope they help you with your individual quests to emulate ‘That Sound’ of the first British ‘guitar hero’ – Hank B Marvin.
I hope you find the SHADSTAB site a useful resource and you get enjoyment from the Tablature.
Happy playing and Best regards
My 2020 ‘Shadows’ Kit
- 1989 American Stratocaster Plus
Colour ‘Razz Berry’ with Rosewood fretboard – fitted Originally with Gold Lace Sensors pickups. In 2001 I changed to Kinman ‘Hank Marvin Hx’ noisless pickups and fitted a kinman no solder K7 harness.
- 2004 Classic Series 50’s Stratocaster
Colour ‘Fiesta Red’ with Maple fretboard. In 20012 I fitted Fender Custom Shop 54 pickups and a kinman no solder K5 harness.
- 2018 ‘Home Built’ 60’s Stratocaster style.
Colour ‘Two Tone Sunburst’ with Rosewood fretboard. I fited it with Fender classic series pickups. Alnico 5 polysol plastic bobbins like the Tex Mex and American Standard sound good…they do a typical classic Strat These certainly do the job well in my opinion.
- 2020 ‘Home Built “A Series” Thinline Stratocaster Style.
Alder semi-hollow body with White binding. The body has a stunning Quilted Maple veneer with a clear finish. The neck is Maple, with an Engineered Rosewood fretboard. Hardware is Gold, with a white Pearloid pickguard. I fitted Fender Custom Shop 54 pickups and a kinman no solder K5 harness.
- VOX AC15C1X (Celestion Alnico Blue Speaker)
- LANEY VC30-112 (Class ‘A’ all valve)
- GA -20 (20W SS practice Amp)
- Zoom 508 (Strachan Shadows Patches)
- Yamaha Magic Stomp (My own Shadows Patches)
- D’Addario NYXL 10-46
- D’Addario NYXL 11-49
- D’Addario NYXL 12-52 (wound third)
- VOX (ToneLab)
- CALINE (Ten Band EQ)
- DUNLOP (Volume Pedal)
- MORLEY (Volume Plus Pedal)
- BOSS TU – (Chromatic Tuner)
- BOSS SD-1 (Super Overdrive)
- BOSS CS-3 (Compression/Sustainer)
- GEMENI III (true-bypass analogue tone-shaper)
- EASYMUTE (Tremolo arms)
- PEDAL BOARD (With Power Brick)
- BOSS RT-20 (‘Leslie’ Rotary ensemble)
- JOYO JW-02 (Digital 5.8GHz Wireless Guitar System)
Disclaimer: The tablature files on this website are the author’s own work and represents his interpretation of the song. You may only use these files for private study, scholarship, or research.