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> New Guy From Shanghai, Introduction and Advice
Morpheus70
post Jan 20 2012, 11:33 PM
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Hi my name is Brandon.

I currently work and live in Shanghai, China as a High School English teacher.

About a decade and a half ago, I went to school at what's now called McNally Smith College of Music in Minneapolis, Mn and majored in guitar performance. I then got a gig to play in a variety band that toured the American South and play for U.S. soldiers in South Korea for 9 months. But that was a looong time ago it seems.

Music never lost its importance in my life, but I went back to school and became an ESL educator. I tried to balance the desire to play with the necessity to study and learn my teaching craft, but didn't always do a good job. I ended up with major wrist and tennis elbow problems because of all the stress I unconsciously put into typing out research papers and overdoing it on the guitar. So, I had to let the guitar go for 5+ years.

It feels (and sounds) like I am starting over. wink.gif That is a good place to be, perhaps, because I can be more deliberate in rebuilding my technique so that there isn't so much tension and consequential sloppiness in my playing. I can also be more mindful of the music. I am thinking GMC is a good place to begin again.

Right now, I only have a Chinese strat-like guitar with a HSS configuration.
I am searching for direction on this website. There's so many options that look good, but I am not sure what is good for me. I tend to be someone who likes to work with a plan and a sense of direction. I have a very busy schedule due to the teaching I am engaged in, but I am looking to create a practice and playing regimine that is wholistic practical and fun. I appreciate all kinds of guitar styles and all genres of music. I'd appreciate any advice on how to get started on getting the most out of this site and the best out of my practice time. I am also very interested in ideas about how to make sure I don't end up with wrist and arm problems again.

Brandon


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Todd Simpson
post Jan 21 2012, 12:15 AM
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Welcome to GMC Brandon! All the way from Shanghai! How cool is that? I'm Todd and I'm one of the instructors here smile.gif Let me say how thrilled we are to have you! And that you've come to the right place. Many of us hear have played ourselves into injury at times. So we can feel your pain! Jump right in to the video chat lessons and the forums. There's just tons of killer info to absorb and killer folks to meet.

Todd


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Gitarrero
post Jan 21 2012, 09:55 AM
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Nice Axe! Welcome to GMC Brandon!

Christian


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Morpheus70
post Jan 21 2012, 10:12 AM
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QUOTE (Todd Simpson @ Jan 20 2012, 11:15 PM) *
Welcome to GMC Brandon! All the way from Shanghai! How cool is that? I'm Todd and I'm one of the instructors here smile.gif Let me say how thrilled we are to have you! And that you've come to the right place. Many of us hear have played ourselves into injury at times. So we can feel your pain! Jump right in to the video chat lessons and the forums. There's just tons of killer info to absorb and killer folks to meet.

Todd



Thanks so much for the warm welcome, Todd.
I am still trying to navigate around the site a bit. Where do I go to view the video chat lessons?

Brandon

QUOTE (Gitarrero @ Jan 21 2012, 08:55 AM) *
Nice Axe! Welcome to GMC Brandon!

Christian



Hi Christian,

Thanks for the welcome and the complment on the axe. Not sure I like the neck but the paintjob and overall tone is good.

Brandon
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Ben Higgins
post Jan 21 2012, 10:58 AM
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Hey Brandon, it's been great talking to you through pm's.. I didn't realise you were in Shanghai ! Very cool cool.gif

I also went through some incredibly frustrating tennis elbow periods too. Even now, if I spend too long on the computer, typing and have long guitar sessions, I notice the pain coming back again. That said, I have generally eradicated it from my life and know how to spot the warning signs now.

Guys, I was suggesting to Brandon the idea of devoting a small amount of practice time to re training his technique by choosing short licks and doing some slow, accurate reps and counting them in groups of 10 until he's done maybe 50 or even 100. This would only take a matter of minutes and would be worth an hour of playing time..

This leaves him plenty of time to learn lessons on GMC that he's really interested in, to keep the enjoyment factor high. smile.gif

Do you guys have any other thoughts on how to help build an interesting, enjoyable but technically beneficial routine that doesn't take too much time out of a busy lifestyle ?


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ztevie
post Jan 21 2012, 02:40 PM
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Hi!

Shanghai, huh? I've been to China several times, including Shanghai. I've always had problems accessing GMC from China but that's maybe fixed now? Can you see Youtube and several other websites that China government don't "like"? Or maybe you're using internet through some other provider so the Great Firewall Of China doesn't effect you?
I'm asking cause there's a possibility I'll move the China in the near future.

Oh, and welcome! rolleyes.gif


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Gear:
* Vigier Shawn Lane Master , Bridge Bareknuckle Nailbomb, Middle DiMarzio FS-1, Neck Bareknuckle Cold Sweat
* ESP Eclipse CTM1 , Bridge EMG 81, Neck EMG 60
* Peavey Vandenberg 2nd Edition , Bridge Tom Anderson HN3, Neck DiMarzio Chopper
* Ztevie's Blue, Custom Handbuilt by Rek Guitars , Seymour Duncan Full Shred humbucker set
* Yamaha LLX6 Acoustic
* Fractal Audio Axe FX II XL+


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maharzan
post Jan 21 2012, 03:33 PM
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Shanghai! Welcome neighbor. I am from Kathmandu. smile.gif I am sure you will have a great time here at GMC. smile.gif


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Morpheus70
post Jan 22 2012, 12:46 AM
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QUOTE (Ben Higgins @ Jan 21 2012, 09:58 AM) *
Hey Brandon, it's been great talking to you through pm's.. I didn't realise you were in Shanghai ! Very cool cool.gif

I also went through some incredibly frustrating tennis elbow periods too. Even now, if I spend too long on the computer, typing and have long guitar sessions, I notice the pain coming back again. That said, I have generally eradicated it from my life and know how to spot the warning signs now.

Guys, I was suggesting to Brandon the idea of devoting a small amount of practice time to re training his technique by choosing short licks and doing some slow, accurate reps and counting them in groups of 10 until he's done maybe 50 or even 100. This would only take a matter of minutes and would be worth an hour of playing time..

This leaves him plenty of time to learn lessons on GMC that he's really interested in, to keep the enjoyment factor high. smile.gif

Do you guys have any other thoughts on how to help build an interesting, enjoyable but technically beneficial routine that doesn't take too much time out of a busy lifestyle ?


Thanks again for the advice, Ben. Apparently, I haven't been watching the signs for the tennis elbow and stuff. I started feeling pain again yesterday. So the only way to come back to the guitar IS to do things in small blocks of time, concentrating on the tension I bring to the guitar and letting it go.



QUOTE (maharzan @ Jan 21 2012, 02:33 PM) *
Shanghai! Welcome neighbor. I am from Kathmandu. smile.gif I am sure you will have a great time here at GMC. smile.gif



Thanks so much! I used to teach many Nepalis when I was teaching English in the States. And I kind of forget that Nepal is that close...sort of....lol

QUOTE (ztevie @ Jan 21 2012, 01:40 PM) *
Hi!

Shanghai, huh? I've been to China several times, including Shanghai. I've always had problems accessing GMC from China but that's maybe fixed now? Can you see Youtube and several other websites that China government don't "like"? Or maybe you're using internet through some other provider so the Great Firewall Of China doesn't effect you?
I'm asking cause there's a possibility I'll move the China in the near future.

Oh, and welcome! rolleyes.gif



There are blocks to some Internet resources that could be used for disseminating info and "propaganda". Apparently. gMC. Is not deemed one of "those" sites. wink.gif
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Alex Feather
post Jan 22 2012, 02:34 AM
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QUOTE (Morpheus70 @ Jan 20 2012, 10:33 PM) *
Hi my name is Brandon.

I currently work and live in Shanghai, China as a High School English teacher.

About a decade and a half ago, I went to school at what's now called McNally Smith College of Music in Minneapolis, Mn and majored in guitar performance. I then got a gig to play in a variety band that toured the American South and play for U.S. soldiers in South Korea for 9 months. But that was a looong time ago it seems.

Music never lost its importance in my life, but I went back to school and became an ESL educator. I tried to balance the desire to play with the necessity to study and learn my teaching craft, but didn't always do a good job. I ended up with major wrist and tennis elbow problems because of all the stress I unconsciously put into typing out research papers and overdoing it on the guitar. So, I had to let the guitar go for 5+ years.

It feels (and sounds) like I am starting over. wink.gif That is a good place to be, perhaps, because I can be more deliberate in rebuilding my technique so that there isn't so much tension and consequential sloppiness in my playing. I can also be more mindful of the music. I am thinking GMC is a good place to begin again.

Right now, I only have a Chinese strat-like guitar with a HSS configuration.
I am searching for direction on this website. There's so many options that look good, but I am not sure what is good for me. I tend to be someone who likes to work with a plan and a sense of direction. I have a very busy schedule due to the teaching I am engaged in, but I am looking to create a practice and playing regimine that is wholistic practical and fun. I appreciate all kinds of guitar styles and all genres of music. I'd appreciate any advice on how to get started on getting the most out of this site and the best out of my practice time. I am also very interested in ideas about how to make sure I don't end up with wrist and arm problems again.

Brandon

I am sorry to hear about your accident! I am glad you are doing better and you decided to continue playing! Just make sure that you do warm up exercises every time before you play and you should be fine! GMC is a great website to learn new things! Glad to see you here!!!


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ztevie
post Jan 22 2012, 10:02 AM
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QUOTE (Morpheus70 @ Jan 22 2012, 12:46 AM) *
There are blocks to some Internet resources that could be used for disseminating info and "propaganda". Apparently. gMC. Is not deemed one of "those" sites. wink.gif

OK, but can you see YT? FB is obviously blocked... Can you download mp3's? For example, I had a song I did myself and recorded in mp3 form and had uploaded on different forums and some other servers. I tried everything but just couldn't download when I was in China... This is a real problem if it's still like this. Have you tried download a backing track from a lesson here?

I also like to record some video sometimes and put up on YT, but this is something I have to do without if I move there I guess... Unless there are some other similar sites thet are allowed? How about MySpace?


--------------------
Gear:
* Vigier Shawn Lane Master , Bridge Bareknuckle Nailbomb, Middle DiMarzio FS-1, Neck Bareknuckle Cold Sweat
* ESP Eclipse CTM1 , Bridge EMG 81, Neck EMG 60
* Peavey Vandenberg 2nd Edition , Bridge Tom Anderson HN3, Neck DiMarzio Chopper
* Ztevie's Blue, Custom Handbuilt by Rek Guitars , Seymour Duncan Full Shred humbucker set
* Yamaha LLX6 Acoustic
* Fractal Audio Axe FX II XL+


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Morpheus70
post Jan 23 2012, 02:44 AM
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QUOTE (ztevie @ Jan 22 2012, 09:02 AM) *
OK, but can you see YT? FB is obviously blocked... Can you download mp3's? For example, I had a song I did myself and recorded in mp3 form and had uploaded on different forums and some other servers. I tried everything but just couldn't download when I was in China... This is a real problem if it's still like this. Have you tried download a backing track from a lesson here?

I also like to record some video sometimes and put up on YT, but this is something I have to do without if I move there I guess... Unless there are some other similar sites thet are allowed? How about MySpace?


You need to use a VPN to access youtube and facebook. I am going to say that any form of social media is going to be blocked, though I haven't tried MySpace to be sure.
Depending on the time of day, streaming video and downloads can be quick or monsterously grueling and time consuming. China has the most users and the worst technological infrastructure to handle such a load, I am told.
I chose GMC because the ease of getting lessons and downloads from here is more stable and better quality than other guitar instruction websites. I also chose it because I wanted to check this place out for a loooonnnng time.

Brandon

QUOTE (Alex Feather @ Jan 22 2012, 01:34 AM) *
I am sorry to hear about your accident! I am glad you are doing better and you decided to continue playing! Just make sure that you do warm up exercises every time before you play and you should be fine! GMC is a great website to learn new things! Glad to see you here!!!



Thank you, Alex

I am going to incorporate Mattes stretching techniques for neck, shoulder, arms and fingers as well as guitar warm up expercises into my routine. Hopefully, this will cover all the bases.

Brandon
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