1 0

 
Reply to this topicStart new topic
> Introduction And Philosophical Question, Intro and ...how much do I really need to know?
Dan Snitter K
post Feb 22 2012, 04:06 PM
Post #1


GMC:er
*

Group: Members
Posts: 2
Joined: 16-February 12
From: Maryland
Member No.: 15.179



Hey, GMC.

My name is Dan, I live in the Maryland suburbs just north of Washington, DC. Thanks to Ben Higgins for the welcome email and the suggestion to post an intro. As an absolute newbie, I feel odd talking about influences, but my top three would be Rik Emmett, David Gilmour, Jimi Hendrix.

I'm brand new to guitar--I just got an Epiphone Les Paul Ultra for Xmas--and have taken 4 lessons so far. I tried to learn once before at the age of 17. My uncle is a semi-pro, he suggested to my parents that I start with accoustic; he gave me one lesson a couple books and said "go to it." I quit in frustration a month later. I've always PLANNED to get back into it, but...life happens.

So now I'm 42 and thinking if not now, never. Trying to do it right with lessons this time (and plenty of Internet research, which led me here, specifically to Bear Rose's videos -- thanks Bear). I've got a full-time job, a two hour round trip commute, two kids, and a third on the way. Which leads me to my philosophical question:

How much do I really need to learn?

Let me explain a bit more. My goal is to be able to play my favorite music (Rik Emmett is number one--both old Triumph stuff, but also some of his more recent Blues/Rock), by myself, in my basement office. I'd LIKE to be able to have enough skill to be able to learn songs if I can get hold of the tabs (for example, I know it isn't cool to like Nickelback, but hey, I'm 42 years old, I stopped worrying about cool years ago, and I like "How You Remind Me"). But since I won't be jamming, touring, or doing studio sessions, and don't think I'd ever need to play any song I don't already know (from listening to it), I'm operating on the assumption that learning to read music (nevermind sight read) is not a good use of my limited time (I've got 45 minutes or so to practice every night after the kids go to bed and maybe an hour on each weekend day).

The question really came to a head for me this week. My instructor is using Brown Eyed Girl as my learning aid (so cliche, but hey, I'm a sponge right now just trying to soak up whatever I can). So I can learn the rhythm one of two ways: the pendulum/metronome arm method where I keep my arm moving in time to the beat, but only hit the strings on the proper pass (D-D-U-U-D-U); or the much easier play it as I hear it (still DDUUDU, but only moving my arm when I'm actually strumming). Seems method one is much better longterm, but since, realistically, keeping in mind my ultimate goal, I'm never going to be playing steady rhythm stuff, is it really a good use of my limited practice time to learn a skill I'm never going to use? I've have never once said "wow, listen to that rhthym guitar in the background of Brown Eyed Girl; I wish I could play that!" I'll be playing leads and power chord dominated rhythm stuff that doesn't require the pendulum arm method (again, think How you Remind Me).

I balance this common sense thinking with the desire not to be "THAT GUY" -- you know, the one who SAYS he can play guitar, but really only knows how to play Smoke on the Water. I'd like to learn to actually PLAY guitar.

So, should I focus on learning what I need know to achieve my goals or bite the bullet and go the longer, harder route (and risk never getting there). Thanks for your thoughts.

---Dan
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
thefireball
post Feb 22 2012, 04:15 PM
Post #2


Learning Roadie
*

Group: Members
Posts: 4.277
Joined: 9-March 10
From: United States, Arkansas
Member No.: 9.801



Well, Dan,

First I wanna welcome you to GMC and congratulate you on your willingness to pick up guitar again. I would say in your situation, get a hold of some tabs and start learning your favorite songs. While you learning these songs check into some theory lessons. The more you know about theory and all the mumbo jumbo the better you will be able write your own music and/or understand other people's work.

I do hope you find what you are looking for. You are on the right track practicing Bear's lessons. He is the man for beginner stuff you need to know. Even I need to dive into his lessons. biggrin.gif I've only been playing a little over 3 years and need to know more theory.

-Brandon
20 years old


--------------------


Bandcamp
Facebook Band Page
Official YouTube Channel
Twitter

My Three Year Guitar Evolution

Subscribe to my other YouTube
Sample my projects on SoundCloud

My success is all because of God.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
dark dude
post Feb 22 2012, 04:22 PM
Post #3


GMC:er
*

Group: Members
Posts: 1.081
Joined: 27-September 09
From: London, UK
Member No.: 7.668



It sounds like you've made your mind up already, to be honest.

To keep your motivation up, you need to stick to learning what you want to play. Even then, you'll hit patches where you'll feel demotivated, as with anything.

Tell your teacher what you want to learn.


--------------------
Ibanez 2550E
LTD EC-1000 VB
Roland Cube 30W
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Ben Higgins
post Feb 22 2012, 07:16 PM
Post #4


Instructor
Group Icon

Group: GMC Instructor
Posts: 11.897
Joined: 11-March 10
From: England
Member No.: 9.820



Hi Dan, great to see you've jumped into the forum... welcome again ! smile.gif

It sounds like the instructor has a purpose behind what he's teaching you, even if it's not immediately obvious.. it sounds like he's trying to teach you timing and how to lock in with the beat (in this case, the beat being the metronome). Also, the metronome is a valuable tool for all us musicians. We don't have to practice with it all the time but its good for developing tightness and speed, things like that. So don't worry that he's got you doing some weird method of practising, it's very normal wink.gif

However, I totally agree with your thoughts that you're having about wanting to learn the things that you're interested in. This is exactly what any musician should be doing and is the key for keeping interest and staying motivated, otherwise what's the point of us playing if we're not getting something out of it ? Almost any musician will tell you that the key to their progression in the instrument was that they were persueing that which they loved.

It probably is worth mentioning to your teacher about the things you'd like to work on. He might say something about you only having 4 lessons and that he wants you to get some basic principles down first, but ultimately he should be willing to help you tackle the things that interest you, not force a curriculum onto you.

In the interests of your happiness too and to avoid feeling torn, I'd still devote some time to the Borwn Eyed Girl exercise but also use your time to start tackling the things you want to. So, some tabs of songs you like are always good but you might find it difficult to articulate them yet so working on strumming, picking individual notes and fretting chords, specifically power chords ! Once you learn a power chord, it's like being given the key !! You're off and nothing can stop ya ! biggrin.gif

We're all here to help too, so anything you need to know just hit us !


--------------------
The only opponent is within.

My Youtube Channel

My Band




Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Dan Snitter K
post Feb 22 2012, 08:10 PM
Post #5


GMC:er
*

Group: Members
Posts: 2
Joined: 16-February 12
From: Maryland
Member No.: 15.179



Thanks to all.

Fireball, yeah, I've been trying to squeeze in theory on the side (usually when it is too late to practice). I don't know that it has made my chords any cleaner, but at least I understand what lies behind the chords. And I can absolutely see how most of the theory willl be essential down the road.

Dark Dude, after rereading my post, you're right. It does sound like I've made up my mind. But that is more a matter of how I wrote the post. Right now, it's all new, so any progress keeps my motivation up. I guess I'm thinking more down the road.

Ben, I've been playing along, assuming there is a natural progression in how one properly learns to play guitar. I made my thoughts known to the instructor and let it drop. I'm treating Brown Eyed Girl for what it is, an exercise to help me learn rhythm and practice making quick cord changes. I wouldn't even try playing anything complex yet...even the stuff I'm more interested in. I know I have to learn to walk before I can run. I just don't THINK I need to learn to skip before I can run, so I'm trying to determine what is a necessary skill and what is nice to have but not necessary.

--Dan
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
dark dude
post Feb 22 2012, 08:26 PM
Post #6


GMC:er
*

Group: Members
Posts: 1.081
Joined: 27-September 09
From: London, UK
Member No.: 7.668



Also, you have to be wary that the teacher's experience will out-weigh yours (hopefully!), so perhaps for a specific technique it would be useful to "skip" before you can "run". You won't know as you haven't gone down that route yourself, ultimately, you can only make educated guesses.

I'm all for choosing the most efficient route or the path of least resistance, but patience will also come into it, otherwise you'll get incredibly frustrated.

This post has been edited by dark dude: Feb 22 2012, 08:26 PM


--------------------
Ibanez 2550E
LTD EC-1000 VB
Roland Cube 30W
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Todd Simpson
post Feb 22 2012, 10:11 PM
Post #7


GMC:er
Group Icon

Group: GMC Instructor
Posts: 8.279
Joined: 23-December 09
From: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Member No.: 8.794



Welcome Dan! Ben is one of our seriously Awesome instructors here @ GMC. I"m Todd and I"m yet another one of our instructors smile.gif Recently, yet another of our instructor, Gabriel started a series of threads for students (Gabriel's Army) to allow each to get tips from him personally as to what they want to learn. I think is a killer idea. Here is a link to Gabs profile. Introduce your self by sending him a personal message on GMC and perhaps jump in the GAB Army!

http://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...forum-profile=1


--------------------
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Ivan Milenkovic
post Feb 29 2012, 08:27 PM
Post #8


Instructor
Group Icon

Group: GMC Instructor
Posts: 25.396
Joined: 20-November 07
From: Belgrade, Serbia
Member No.: 3.341



Welcome aboard man, glad you joined.

Regarding your rhythm problem, don't worry so much, have fun playing. I also advise method where you actually play up & down ALL the time, but you strum only when needed (DDUUDU). It's much better to play like that, so you create a steady rhythm hand.


--------------------
- Ivan's Video Chat Lesson Notes HERE
- Check out my GMC Profile and Lessons
- (Please subscribe to my) YouTube Official Channel
- Let's be connected through ! Facebook! :)
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
SirJamsalot
post Apr 16 2012, 09:42 PM
Post #9


Learning Rock Star
*

Group: Members
Posts: 1.027
Joined: 4-May 10
From: Bay Area, California
Member No.: 10.312



Welcome to the community!

When you say you're not really that interested in rhythm (because it's not what you focus on when listening), but I have to say, if you're not going to be playing with others ~ just rather, only your songs in a basement, then i have to presume you're going to be a solo act? If that's the case, 100% of everything you play is going to require rhythm to play it ~ and by rhythm, I mean you're not going to be singing over solos.

I would say skip the theory ~ theory IMO is for folk interested in composition and being able to study other works to glean techniques and new sounds from other's works. In reality, the bands you mentioned key off a 3-4 chord progression. Let's see what you can do just learning 4 chords.



If playing your favorite songs is your only goal, then you don't need to go overboard ~ learn the basic chords, and spend your time working on strumming patterns and singing while playing. This will give you the fastest results that will make you a hit at parties.

Everything else is pretty much guitar craftsmanship gone wild - the process of perfecting the nuances and technical skills to play intricate songs, which most guitarists want to learn because, well, guitar solos are rad smile.gif

But yah ~ stick to the basics. Don't throw out rhythm ~ it's the one constant in music and even though you don't focus on it, your music will not be music without it! When you encounter a song that requires some intricate parts with picking or soloing, then start working on that aspect of it when you get there. Guthrie pretty much did this (in an interview I watched of him explaining how he learned). For him, technique resulted from desiring to play what he wanted to come out of his guitar, so he worked on it. He didn't sit in front of a metrinome learning things he might need one day in the future. A respectable way to learn ~ after all, he's Guthrie. cool.gif

Again, welcome and enjoy your music!

Chris!

This post has been edited by SirJamsalot: Apr 16 2012, 09:47 PM


--------------------
The more I practice, the more I wish I had time to practice!
https://twitter.com/SirJamsalot
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Todd Simpson
post Apr 16 2012, 11:22 PM
Post #10


GMC:er
Group Icon

Group: GMC Instructor
Posts: 8.279
Joined: 23-December 09
From: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Member No.: 8.794



WELCOME! You have found the right place smile.gif You will get better with some practice, some osmosis, and some REC/COLLAB/CHAT time! This community is incredible. Dive in!

Todd


--------------------
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post

Reply to this topicStart new topic
1 User(s) are reading this topic (1 Guests and 0 Anonymous Users)
0 Members:

 


RSS Lo-Fi Version Time is now: 24th April 2014 - 01:46 PM