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gregc1
post Jan 23 2012, 09:16 PM
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Brand new member here. Been playing for years but felt I hit a wall so I started hunting for something to help me out and get me out of my box. So I landed here and LOVE it.

I've only done a couple lessons but plan on diving in hard and look forward to using all of the resources available here. Problem is I've already found so much I want do I don't know where to start.

Anyway, thank you for this site and I can't wait to interact and see where it takes me!


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Sinisa Cekic
post Jan 23 2012, 10:55 PM
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Welcome to GMC smile.gif! Here you will find all the necessary material, of course, but you need a plan. What you would like to learn? Are you familiar with the pentatonic scales? What you think - which level is suitable for you?


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gregc1
post Jan 23 2012, 11:22 PM
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QUOTE (Sinisa Cekic @ Jan 23 2012, 09:55 PM) *
Welcome to GMC smile.gif! Here you will find all the necessary material, of course, but you need a plan. What you would like to learn? Are you familiar with the pentatonic scales? What you think - which level is suitable for you?



Based off what I've seen so far I'm probably in the 3-4 range. I am familiar with the pentatonic scales and maybe 5 basic patterns or positions. I'm also somewhat familiar with modes and the different positions although I've seen several variations. The problem I run into is using them properly. I have practiced them (modes and pentatonic bluesy rock stuff) but I never can seem to get away from the feeling that I'm just running through scales. I want to learn to move around more fluently and be more melodic.

Also, my little finger is pretty weak so I'm working on that too. I've already started the Little Finger Workout with Dejan Farkas which is challenging but what I need to learn to do. I've also been working on Muris Varajic's Ghost Notes lesson so I will get that recorded and uploaded to the REC section for a critique as soon as possible.

Thanks!


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derper
post Jan 24 2012, 03:32 AM
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Welcome Greg!! I'm in a similar situation..... playing for years, but just hit a plateau on self-improvement. I guess that's why we aren't "supposed" to just improve by ourselves!!

Anyway, I love GMC as well. Found so many great vids!!



I'm glad Sinisia asked about the pentatonic forms. Although it's easy nowadays for guitarists to put "too much" emphasis on pentatonic, I also think it is absolutely essential to learn both major and minors in all positions. Sinisia also had a video chat today that outlines natural minot scales withing pentatonic boxes (https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_forum/index.php?showtopic=42178), which is something I "know/feel" but never really studied. It was awesome to read about it and SEE it on paper (fretboards)!!

Also, I feel that playing guitar has two sides.... Knowledge, which incorporates all practice and study, and "Expression" which is the applications of the "knowledge" side of playing, in order to express yourself or your ideas musically, rhythmically, and harmonically.

That said, I believe that ALL knowledge helps you "express" yourself better. (Boring so far, but stay with me...) For me, early on, I tried to "express" myself too much, and skipped over much of the knowledge necessary to actually express what I wanted, whether it be a Zeppelin riff or an improv solo on a jam.

So if your problem is "expression" (or "application" of the knowledge) then you get the fun part!! You get to focus on learning different ways to "express" yourself better!! For example, I always heard this "jazzy" little riff everywhere!! Then, come to find out..... during a solo you just move up one fret (half step) and do a chromatic run through the end of the measure! BAM!!! You ripped a classic jazz riff, with killer soul/feel and didn't have to learn a single piece of "jazz theory" (but don't shy away from that either!!).

Another breakthrough for me, was finding out how to seamlessly blend major and minor pentatonic over blues progressions. Talk about taking "knowledge" to the "expression" side of things!!

Basically, any "little pointer" or cool riff goes into your bag of tricks. Eventually, it becomes something you can reach for when you "feel" it in your solo. OR, you grow beyond that, and are able to hear an idea you've never played, but because you're so familiar with the fretboard from practicing all these different techniques, you're able to just reach into your head and pluck it out with your hands!! Some of my favorite "pointers" to help turn that knowledge into expression, would be....

-Ever get "lost" during a solo, or feel like you're playing too many notes with no direction? STOP!! (literally stop playing that solo at the time) Wait a moment and "re-start" the solo, but focus on creating a melody OR just playing a variation of the song melody, and build off of that.

-Play the same arpeggio, but change it rhythmically!!

-Sing what you play, and play what you sing!! A GREAT way to eliminate unnecessary, boring or "crowded" notes in a solo. It can also lead you to play notes, phrasing and shapes that your brain and fingers normally would not allow, as you "chase" your own voice. Hey....it works for George Benson!

-Emulate another instrument. Many players will play as a "sax", "piano", and especially as the human voice in order to inject non-guitar phrasing, timing and "breathing spaces" into your solo. It certainly is fun to try anyway!!

-"Improv" jam something you're very familiar with (aka:"funky pentatonic Am groove rhythm track" or "E blues rhythm track") and just loosen up, and create melodies and experiment. Helps if you can do it live, and pass the rhythm back and forth between a friend every 4 measures or so.


Hope something in there helps, well, somebody!!


QUOTE (gregc1 @ Jan 23 2012, 08:16 PM) *
Brand new member here. Been playing for years but felt I hit a wall so I started hunting for something to help me out and get me out of my box. So I landed here and LOVE it.

I've only done a couple lessons but plan on diving in hard and look forward to using all of the resources available here. Problem is I've already found so much I want do I don't know where to start.

Anyway, thank you for this site and I can't wait to interact and see where it takes me!



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Check out my awesome Nintendo Cover-band, EMULATOR!!
http://www.reverbnation.com/emulator

Now.....go practice!!
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Todd Simpson
post Jan 24 2012, 04:08 AM
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Welcome to GMC! You have come to the right place wink.gif Jump in to the video chats and the forums and the collabs! You'll break through your old barriers before you know it!



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gregc1
post Jan 24 2012, 04:41 PM
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Good points across the board Derper. I feel like I have a somewhat good handle on the knowledge side but I do struggle with the expression part.

"Another breakthrough for me, was finding out how to seamlessly blend major and minor pentatonic over blues progressions Talk about taking "knowledge" to the "expression" side of things!!"

Definitely going to give this a try.

I've only been a member for a couple days but have already pick up some new skills from the couple of lessons I've done. Very excited to keep going!


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maharzan
post Jan 24 2012, 05:12 PM
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Welcome aboard!


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quadrium
post Jan 24 2012, 05:46 PM
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Welcome to GMC man smile.gif


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Gitarrero
post Jan 24 2012, 06:03 PM
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Welcome to GMC!


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Ben Higgins
post Jan 24 2012, 06:37 PM
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Welcome to the community ! It's great to see the other guys jumping in with some advice already. That's the great thing (well, just one of the great things) about this forum. If you have a question, just post it up and you'll get loads of advice smile.gif


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derper
post Jan 24 2012, 07:57 PM
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Thanks Greg! I'm actually going to put together a brief video discussing the "marriage of major and minor pentatonic" over simple blues progressions, because that's really the easiest place to apply it. Not that I fancy myself an "instructor", but I think a quick vid/forum post could get some of us all talking and sharing ideas on this simple, yet VERY important technique/skill of seamlessly blending major/minor. If it's something you're not currently very comfortable with Greg, I'm willing to bet it will be a GREAT place to start, so you can feel the energy and joy of some immediate improvement in being able to express yourself through a solo better. I'll try to remember to PM you when I post that vid, so you can jump in and share some ideas as well.

QUOTE (gregc1 @ Jan 24 2012, 03:41 PM) *
Good points across the board Derper. I feel like I have a somewhat good handle on the knowledge side but I do struggle with the expression part.

"Another breakthrough for me, was finding out how to seamlessly blend major and minor pentatonic over blues progressions Talk about taking "knowledge" to the "expression" side of things!!"

Definitely going to give this a try.

I've only been a member for a couple days but have already pick up some new skills from the couple of lessons I've done. Very excited to keep going!



Thanks Ben! I believe that, second to the instructors, one of the other valuable assets here at GMC is..... EACH OTHER!! We really can all stand to learn from each other, and get different conversations going, to help share ideas, riffs and more. I'm fairly new here, and find myself constantly wanting to share little riffs and ideas with the community here. And most of what I may share, can easily be expanded on by combining with the awesome instructor vids. For example, if I talk a little about "major/minor pentatonic riffs", there are hundreds of videos here that can expand on that topic, or explain the theory more in depth. But sometimes hearing it from a fellow student can also get the ball rolling.


QUOTE (Ben Higgins @ Jan 24 2012, 05:37 PM) *
Welcome to the community ! It's great to see the other guys jumping in with some advice already. That's the great thing (well, just one of the great things) about this forum. If you have a question, just post it up and you'll get loads of advice smile.gif



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Check out my awesome Nintendo Cover-band, EMULATOR!!
http://www.reverbnation.com/emulator

Now.....go practice!!
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Daniel Realpe
post Jan 24 2012, 08:12 PM
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Welcome to GMC!

I'm glad you found the place and you'll surely get a ton of value out of it, and we're hto help as much as we can


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Cosmin Lupu
post Jan 25 2012, 10:29 AM
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Welcome to GMC! smile.gif it would be a good idea to slowly start exploring and get to enjoy the features our wonderful community has to offer biggrin.gif like the video chat sessions! Check out the bottom of the homepage for a detailed schedule - my session happens every Thursday at 8PM London time smile.gif I've just started a series on understanding the modes so, feel free to drop by if you'd like

Cosmin


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