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My Musical Journey: The Altered Stage Chapter

by Eric Fitzgerald

About two years ago, I moved to downtown Chicago – the move was exclusively for work, and coming from Upstate New York, I didn’t really know anyone in the area. Without anyone to ask where to find a guitar shop to pick up some new strings, I resorted to Google to see if I could find anything nearby. Only about four blocks away, this place called Altered Stage was one of a few results. There was a picture of people playing guitar, so I clicked into the website. After reading the About Us paragraph, completely distracted from my original objective, I ended up reading through every corner of the website with wide eyes. This sounded like the kind of place I had always wished existed.
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Out Of The Black And Into The Blue

by Erik Clausen

I still recall fondly the many times that friend, business partner, and Altered Stage founder Jeff Bergau suggested that I “jam a few tunes” at our annual gathering. Year after year Jeff would try to convince me to play… something… at the summer party and every year, without fail, I would ask if there was an opening for tambourine. After all, despite my lifelong love of music, I was unable to play any musical instrument.

Then, three years ago, everything changed. I don’t know quite what was going through my head when I told Jeff a week before the party that I would somehow play guitar on one song. Somehow.
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“You are next!”

“You are next!”

by Stênio Ferreira

As I heard these words and looked at the stage, my anxiety peaked. My friends were in the middle of their song, but I had gotten the call to start getting ready to go up the stage. I went to the side as instructed, and started tuning my guitar in preparation. Hitting the E string made me remember how far I had come since the decision, one month before, to join Altered Stage.

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