Yes, I will send it via USPS. No problem...
As for the contact problem, I appreciate your info. It still has me scratching my head. I will look into it some more and get it fixed. I usually encourage people to communicate with me through the forum on my site. Would that work for you?
slejhamer wrote:Communication with other musicians is an obvious one - it seems like a pidgin. And thinking in terms of Mamas and Aboys is no substitute for a solid understanding of how scales are constructed; this seems to be a detour, and to some degree it perhaps oversimplifies things.
I would like to target two words here that I think are critical to understanding the relationship between my system and the traditional system for learning music theory. Is it a substitute, or suppliment? At first, my method seems like a substitute. You can find yourself playing in any key, in any mode, knowing where all the right notes and all the right chords are for that key, in practically no time at all. You might even marvel, as I did and still do, that you can get away with all this without having to even know the names of the notes or chords you're playing. How crazy is it to be able to play in any key and, for example, be able to suddenly shift into harmonic minor and back (knowing the appropriate alterations for every chord as well) without actually knowing the names of the notes involved? I would think it's a kind of insanity if I didn't already know how simple it is. Before my method led me to such heights, I didn't even know such things were possibilities. (Of course, I might hear what that kind of move sounded like in music but I had no idea how I could ever acheive it myself...I would just think "That sounded neat" and be at a complete loss.) So, the rSoG method brought me to these places in music and gave me to power to use it as a complete substitute for a traditional education in music theory. But, once I started looking into what tradition had to offer, I found that the books that used to confuse me were actually easy to understand. I had tried to make it through those kinds of chapters before...you know, the ones that tell you how to build the major scale in a certain key and how the intervals create the triads for all the naturally occurring chords in that key...but before the rSoG gave me the gift, I just couldn't make it to the end of the chapter. Why? I just didn't know how that information could make me a better guitarist. I couldn't see the relevance. After the rSoG hit me I could finally pay attention to those chapters, in fact, I ate them up and asked for more! So, people can use my method as a substitute and get away with it in big ways, but they don't have to...and I encourage them not to. You should used it as a suppliment and keep from isolating yourself from the rest of the world. You don't have to, so don't.
I don't want anyone to get the wrong idea about my method by thinking that it somehow puts a wall between you and other guitars when it comes to communication. Calling a chord YBro isn't so confusing to a traditional student if you refer to it as "Dorian". Just as each of the people in a real family have their own generic, relational names (Papa, Mama, etc) they also have specific, absolute names (Chris, Maria, etc). These names actually serve as a kind of "key signature". For example, if I tell you "Mama on the 5th fret of the top string", (if you understand the method), you will know where all the other chords are as well as where every playable note is. So, if the absolute names serve to bridge the gap between traditional students and rSoGuitarists, then why even have the generic naming scheme? The answer is that it serves as a powerful metaphor for remembering the location and function of each chord in the family. It is a metaphor that serves the user all the way into the advanced chapters. It turns out that the generic naming scheme is actually the real source of power, in my opinion, of the rSoG method. I mean, the stuff on soloing is the part that most people get excited about, but it's the ability to understand chords that really makes the difference between just noodling and soloing with powerful and meaningful phrases. If it weren't for my generic naming system, then all the complaints you hear about "pattern-based" learning would be true of my method as well. I hope it's okay with Nick if I quote him here, as he was the one to coin the phrase "pattern-based understanding" when we were discussing the rSoG method. My method focuses on studying the relationship between the pattern for melody and chords, as they are one in the same. The chords give you the license to drive the melody, they are inextricable connected in a way that is so simple if you can just teach yourself to "see" the music. As my signature file now implies, that is starting to become a phrase that I think embodies the rSoG way of thinking..."see the music". I have heard myself tell many a student before, "if it looks right, it will sound right." It's kind of crazy how I have learned that the way it looks and the way it sounds are one in the same as well. I used to hear about how people who read and write music enough can just look at a sheet of music and start hearing it as they read it...I have always thought that was such a cool thing. Now, I can admit to knowing what that means. I hope everyone can reach that level if they aren't already there now.
Well, at this point I feel like I'm writing another book, about my book...but I've enjoyed it. I've been all over the place with my thoughts. I actually jumped around a bunch and finally gathered enough momentum to feel like I was making sense. I wrote the stuff below actually earlier than what's above. I feel I'm at a good stopping point now, and I could just delete the rest, but, I figure why not just leave it. Maybe something in it will also benefit someone. So, I'm gonna leave it and just hope it doesn't cause any confusion for anyone.
It's kind of interesting that some may think my intention is to circumvent the entire tradition of learning music theory, because that's how I started out. I recognized the power of the method and I sought to completely ignore tradition. Why not, if possible, right? Well, for a few years I locked into this mentality, thinking that the success of my method might actually depend on it. Turns out, it doesn't and it doesn't need to. In fact, I have found that my method and the traditional method actually exist in harmony with eachother. When I finally let this notion soak into my mind it wasn't a big shock, as it shouldn't be to anyone. Music is music and the laws that govern them existed long before we gave them recognition. When tablature entered the historical scene, did it change the music it described? Of course not. It was and is simply another lense to look through.
So, what I'm saying is that you can use the Rosetta Stone Of Guitar as an aid to learning traditional music theory. The reverse is also true. People who know some traditional music theory can usually jump right in with the rSoG method and hit the ground running. The only problem I've seen really work to keep them apart is some form of stubbornness or lack of patience. (And as I have already admitted, that also happened to be my problem, coming from the other side. For so long I had been let down by traditional methods, and had hardened my heart toward it. As a young, impatient guitarist, I couldn't slow down long enough to read between the lines and finally understand what tradition wanted to show me.)
If traditional music theorists can educate themselves by studying the 5 ledger line staff, why can't guitarists have their "staff" right on the fretboard? That was an early goal for me with rSoG. How can I remove that step? I want to teach music theory without having to transfer/translate from the 5 ledger line staff to the fretboard. After all, that's where our eyes and our focus tends to be, especially for me, growning up as a mostly improvisational player. So, rather than teach people to study the patterns that are made by the way the 5 ledger lined staff is layed out, I teach them what all that looks like on the fretboard. Learn to "see the music"...
If I try to open the "frame.exe" file, it says there is no default application to open it with. This doesn't surprise me as I always thought that an executable file (*.exe) on a PC isn't executable on a Mac. I'm using an iMac (2 GHz Intel Core Duo) running Mac OS X version 10.4.11. I can run the videos and tutorials but I select each manually in my web browser (Safari v3.1.1). It's a little more cumbersome but it works. I also ran the DVD on a PC so I know how it's "supposed" to look. I appreciate your reply here; let me know if there is anything else I can try or test out on my Mac.
So far, all I know (or think I know) is that older Macs supported autorun and OSX doesn't. Maybe that's a safety feature to deny things like viruses from attacking the system.
I was just thinking about your issue, with the Mac, and I re-read your message...then an idea hit me. If you are able to run each lesson seperately, then that means you are able to run the files ending is ".swf". If I'm not mistaken, there is also a "frame.swf" in the root directory of the DVD. You should try running that.
The quizzes and Forum link don't work properly though. It looks like the quizzes aren't accessible because of an Adobe Flash security setting in my browser - I'll play around with it and let you know. Thanks for the help!
Thanks for all the feedback with this. I'm always working on making the rSoG better and this is definitely an area I'll be focusing on now.
- Guitari Lama
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NEZTOK wrote:garlandpool wrote:I have found that my method and the traditional method actually exist in harmony with each other.
I believe what's annoying me, and I'm sure others, is that you call it "YOUR" method. Do you own a copy of The Guitar Grimoire? Turn to page 19:
http://books.google.com/books?id=4sMsm8 ... o#PPA19,M1
and on page 20:
http://books.google.com/books?id=4sMsm8 ... o#PPA20,M1
do you see "Sweeping Patterns?" Do they look familiar? Does the author claim that it's his method? Nope, he just presents it as what it is - SCALES! There is no secrets...
I'm sure you're really helping people, but why not just make a web page showing people how to use the GG? It would save people money and you time. It's a win win.
Although I don't have the dvd yet, from what I've seen, it's not the underlying scales, which he claims as his "method", it's how you learn them, in relation to the fretboard - that is "his" method.
I, personally, don't see the comparison between the Grimoir and Fred Pool's method. The Grimoir is laying out schematics of scales. It is just scale charts.
RSoG is a method to learn those scales and be able to use them anywhere on the fretboard. It makes no attempt to be a manual of scale charts, like the Grimoir.
So, no, it doesn't annoy me in the slightest.
I'm sorry to hear that you are so annoyed with me. I'm not quite sure how to respond to that. That's not my purpose here. I am trying to help people become better guitarists and I have worked very hard to create these instructional materials. I'm really sorry if I've somehow come across sounding a little "too proud" of them for your taste. I'm sure I must be guilty of at least some pride, no matter how hard I try to rid myself of it. But I can honestly tell you that if I've discovered anything real about the guitar I have to thank all the students I've interacted with, over the last ten years, more than anything I did alone. It was the struggles I shared with them, trying to transport ideas from my head to theirs that caused me to really question what I sometimes only thought I knew. I was forced to explain the same old stuff in so many different ways because what worked for one person might not work for another. I can't tell you how many times I found myself having my own little revelation in mid-sentence, while trying to explain something to someone else. This rSoG method, if I dare give it a name, is a result of the way I learned to see music theory as an accumulation of those experiences. Time and time again I was challenged with "how can I make the simplicity of music theory more obvious to my students?"
Now, as I attempt to address the mild charge you've made at me, please understand that I don't intend to aggravate you, or anyone else for that matter, any further. But I can't stand for the injustice of insinuating that the rSoG method is a mere regurgitation of the Guitar Grimoire.
You asked me if I own the Guitar Grimoire. I do. I own "Scales and Modes" and I also own "Progressions and Improvisations". As far as making a web page to teach people how to learn from that method...I can only hope that by the time my students have sat through their first hour lesson, they will realize that pages 21-41 are that same pattern repeated about 84 times. In the next chapter, pages 43-63 are, once again, the same pattern repeated about the same number of times. If the author had devoted more time to explaining the concept of why the pattern actually remains the same for all keys, the 211 page book would be in my estimation, about 36 pages long. To the untrained eye, the book seems to suggest that there are nearly endless scales to memorize. If you take the (estimate) number of times the same pattern is presented (84) and multiply it by the number of chapters (scale patterns presented = 27) you get a whopping 2,268 scale patterns to memorize.
I couldn't possibly imagine feeding that impression to my students. Now, if you read the opening paragraph of the Guitar Grimoire, you'll find these words:
"In the pages that ensue, the mystical veil that enshrouds music theory will be removed." Yet, if you consider how much text is actually devoted to explaining that significant mystery versus how many pages are merely the repetitive reference materials, it is a very short book and it left me, for the most part, to fend for myself. Diagrams like what you find here:
http://books.google.com/books?id=4sMsm8 ... o#PPA10,M1
http://books.google.com/books?id=4sMsm8 ... o#PPA11,M1
...in the early pages of the book, don't exactly roll out the red carpet. I look at those kinds of charts and think, "There has to be a better way." I'm fully confident that those little equations really can unravel the mystery, but I just can't seem to wrap my head around them...And I don't think I'm the only one in that boat. If anyone can make sense of them, maybe you can. Maybe it'll be you who creates the web page that makes the Guitar Grimoire more useful to "thick" people like me. I don't stand a chance. In spite of the author's ambitious claim in the opening paragraph, I'm going to give him the benefit of the doubt and believe he intended it as more of a "reference manual" for guitarists.
I've said it before, if I could've learned from any other source, I would have and I wouldn't have "wasted" so much of my precious time trying to put my thoughts in a more "digestible" form to help others get around such obstacles. I would have just pointed the way to the pre-existing material.
So, what is it that I can call my own in all this? If you read my previous post(s) you will find that I'm not trying to keep it such a "secret" in the way that you have implied. You're right...I'm not teaching anything a really determined individual can't glean on his/her own just by sorting through all the free information scattered across the web. I'm just teaching the same old stuff any old music theory book has been screaming at us since the beginning of time. In all honesty, the only piece of originality I can stake a claim in is the WAY I present it. You want to know what is at the core of the rSoG method? It is the very fact that I have given NAMES to the shapes found on the fretboard that transend whatever key you happen to be in. I have given NAMES to chords that also transcend the key. I have done so in an attempt to annihilate certain misconceptions people tend to have about the simplicity of music theory, misconceptions I once harbored myself. (And please don't get me wrong...I do not believe I have yet reached, or will ever truly reach the end of that journey.)
Oddly enough, the novelty of the simple power of assigning names to things and the effect it has on effective communication actually came to me from taking Geometry in high school. The teacher would draw a couple of triangles on the board but before we could start trying to prove one was congruent to the other, he would have to assign names to each vertex (A, B, C, etc). Only after they actually had names/labels could we effectively have conversations about them. It was a subtle, but powerfully important concept that was not lost on me.
So, if you seek to understand the fundamental power base of the rSoG method, it comes down to, quite humbly, "names". From that simple foundation comes the next level of effectiveness, the presentation. I have attempted to pursue the learner with static text/diagrams, animated tutorials and video. But without the foundation of "my" naming system, I would have practically nothing to present to you or anyone else.
I hope this helps you understand where I'm coming from. I hope I have not offended you any further. I'm doing my best to make the truth as obvious as possible, both here and in my teaching materials.
By the way, I've tried to contact you a couple of times about sending your DVD (sorry, I still have it all packaged up on my desk). PayPal gave me a warning that your address is "unconfirmed" as of yet. So, I wrote you a couple of times trying to get you to verify it for me before I send, but I haven't heard from you. Could you private message me your address or something so I can send it off with confidence that it will reach you? I really appreciate it and will send it as soon as I get that information.
- Guitari Lama
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By the way, he's not the first to give alternate names to notes, someone came up with Do, Re, Mi.....etc., which is used, in the movable Solfege method, to indicate scale degrees.
- Guitarnoise Addict
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With RSoG there are only three mini building-block patterns and they always appear in the same order. To me, that's the real benefit of Rosetta Stone - once you "see" it, you can't really forget it.
Sure the patterns are there with the Grimoire, too, but it's not as user-friendly imho.
As far as the RSoG theory aspect goes, I still prefer translating the chord family names to the even-more-generic I, ii, iii, IV, V, vi and vii*. Tough to break old habits.
My CIG Rock Blog
I've got blisters on my fingers. ~Ringo Starr
Music is spiritual. The music business is not. ~ Van Morrison
Do Re Mi Fa So La Ti Do
Do Re Me (and I'm not sure about the rest without looking them up)...but the point is that Do in this example is not the same interval as the Do in the major example. That was my problem with this system. The Do in the major scale example is the root of a major chord, but to find that same root/chord in the minor example, you're actually looking at "Me". To remedy this "problem" I would imagine you'd have to have made it work like this:
La Ti Do Re Mi Fa So La
Treating it this way would be "generic" enough to overcome the need for note names (thus enabling the user to apply it to any key) but also be "absolute" enough to preserve the identity of the root it represents.
The I, ii, iii method shares the same issue, but at least it indicates minor or majorness of the root of each chord.
I'd like to devote more time to talking about these things. I don't consider myself an "expert" on the purposes and conceptual effects of using the I, ii, iii system. I understand that a lot of jazz players use it and I imagine they are pretty satisfied with it. Jazz has certain requirements for dealing with key changes and scale changes that are probably pretty difficult to indicate without such a system. I'd love to hear from anyone who has an opinion on the usefullness of this system or any, for that matter.
My method is essentially what you would get if you called each chord by the name of the mode it represents (Ionian, Dorian, Phrygian, etc.), only I have taken it one step further because of the difficulty of teaching students to remember the relative positions of these chords with respect to one another when using those names. I have replaced them with generic "family" names that serve as a metaphor for remembering their positions all over the fretboard. Something great happens in a student's understanding of music theory when you use this kind of approach. Not trying too hard to sound funny here, but you could say there is a kind of "oneness" to all of music theory when you reach a certain point of view about it. You start to see how many songs are made from practically the same recipe; even when comparing a song in a minor key versus one in a major key.
I think one of the ultimate levels is when you see the way the fabric of melody and chords are one in the same stuff, no matter what key or scale you use. When I get a student to that place, it's always cause for celebration...