Lessons to jam not to become a musician

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RoundI
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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by RoundI » April 6th, 2011, 7:17 am

Minotaur,

So it does! Thanks for letting me know. It is not as user friendly but it is free and it works.

Mystery
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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by Mystery » April 6th, 2011, 7:30 am

Thanks all for kind suggestions and tips.
Keep up the good work. :note1: :note2: 8)

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Minotaur
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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by Minotaur » April 6th, 2011, 7:58 am

RoundI wrote:Minotaur,

So it does! Thanks for letting me know. It is not as user friendly but it is free and it works.
Glad to be of help. :)
It is difficult to answer when one does not understand the question.

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Johnny Lee
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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by Johnny Lee » April 7th, 2011, 5:08 pm

Not sure if this needs to be said but I think it's important: Learn the songs WELL.

My big mistake starting out was not learning the entire song, and not learning it to the point where I could play it on demand. If you don't get to that point with whatever you learn, it's kind of a waste. Every song has some techniques/ideas that can be used elsewhere. If you don't own them, you won't have them at your disposal for other stuff (jamming, songwriting, improv,etc)
My writings on playing guitar => No B.S. Guitar

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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by Mystery » April 8th, 2011, 7:17 am

Thanks Johny.
I'm working on switching among major chords such as E, A, D, C with songs that only use these.
Like someone else said, I found switching back and forth only two chords helps fingers remember the movement. :o

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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by Hyperborea » April 10th, 2011, 9:20 am

Mystery wrote:I am a programmer and find new programming language easier than learning a new combination of chords switch. :shock:
I'm a software engineer too and I've never really had any difficulty learning a new programming language or math or physics or anything like that. But learning to play the guitar is a whole different kind of thing and learning it is really a different kind of process. It was strange when I started learning to play guitar and it didn't just come like those other mental skills. While I was learning to play the guitar I was also learning how to learn a physical skill.

That was an interesting experience for me. It also took me longer at the beginning because of this. I made a number of wrong turns and had many mistaken ideas of how to learn to play. Just persevering and sticking your nose to the grindstone won't work if you're doing the wrong things. From your posts it sounds like you too have/had some of the same issues. I would highly recommend reading a book or two on the topic of "training" or "talent" - one of the recent ones that summarizes a lot of the work is "The Talent Code". I read some of the earlier work in this area and it really helped me figure out how to practice.

What you can do with that analytical side of your brain is to apply it to some areas of guitar - use it to help you figure out how to learn better (find out what works for you), use it to learn some theory - knowing at least some of this will make it easier to jam with others, etc.
Pop music is about stealing pocket money from children. - Ian Anderson

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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by Mystery » April 10th, 2011, 2:33 pm

Hyperborea,
Thanks for inspiring comments.
Practice makes perfect...

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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by NoteBoat » April 10th, 2011, 3:01 pm

Mystery wrote: Practice makes perfect...
Only if you do it right... because practice doesn't make perfect - practice makes permanent. Only perfect practice makes perfect :)

Seriously - use your practice time to get it RIGHT, no matter how slowly you have to play in order to do it. The real purpose of practicing is to turn your motions into habits; you want to make sure that your habits are good ones.
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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by Mystery » April 10th, 2011, 3:07 pm

NoteBoat wrote:
Mystery wrote: Practice makes perfect...
Only if you do it right... because practice doesn't make perfect - practice makes permanent. Only perfect practice makes perfect :)

Seriously - use your practice time to get it RIGHT, no matter how slowly you have to play in order to do it. The real purpose of practicing is to turn your motions into habits; you want to make sure that your habits are good ones.
Point noted. :)

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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by Johnny Lee » April 10th, 2011, 6:51 pm

Hyperborea wrote:
Mystery wrote:I am a programmer and find new programming language easier than learning a new combination of chords switch. :shock:
I'm a software engineer too and I've never really had any difficulty learning a new programming language or math or physics or anything like that. But learning to play the guitar is a whole different kind of thing and learning it is really a different kind of process. It was strange when I started learning to play guitar and it didn't just come like those other mental skills. While I was learning to play the guitar I was also learning how to learn a physical skill.

That was an interesting experience for me. It also took me longer at the beginning because of this. I made a number of wrong turns and had many mistaken ideas of how to learn to play. Just persevering and sticking your nose to the grindstone won't work if you're doing the wrong things. From your posts it sounds like you too have/had some of the same issues. I would highly recommend reading a book or two on the topic of "training" or "talent" - one of the recent ones that summarizes a lot of the work is "The Talent Code". I read some of the earlier work in this area and it really helped me figure out how to practice.

What you can do with that analytical side of your brain is to apply it to some areas of guitar - use it to help you figure out how to learn better (find out what works for you), use it to learn some theory - knowing at least some of this will make it easier to jam with others, etc.
Yea, I can really relate to having gone through that as well. And funny enough, i'm also an engineer :-)

Maybe it's something about being left-brain analytical types that makes learning guitar a bit more challenging. For instance, what if someone who has a background in dance tried to learn guitar? Would he/she have an easier time because they already have an idea of how to train their body? My guess would be yes,
My writings on playing guitar => No B.S. Guitar

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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by Hyperborea » April 12th, 2011, 11:26 pm

Johnny Lee wrote:Maybe it's something about being left-brain analytical types that makes learning guitar a bit more challenging. For instance, what if someone who has a background in dance tried to learn guitar? Would he/she have an easier time because they already have an idea of how to train their body? My guess would be yes,
Yeah, I think so too. In fact, probably anybody whose learned a physical skill to at least some reasonable level would have a leg up in knowing how to practice, what to expect, how plan "workouts", etc. So, maybe a high school athlete, or a trained dancer, etc. I think that the reason you get a lot of "stored under the bed" guitars on craigslist is precisely because of this. A lot of folks buy a guitar and have no real idea about how to practice and don't really get anywhere with it at all.

Learning how to practice may be harder for those who are, as you say, "left-brained" but it seems to be hard enough to figure out for many non-left brained folks too. I think a good guitar teacher in the old-school music teacher style would have been a great help to me if I'd found one early in early days of my learning to play. Unfortunately they seem to be few and far between.
Pop music is about stealing pocket money from children. - Ian Anderson

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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by Liontable » April 14th, 2011, 3:05 am

Part of the issue lies in lack of knowledge though. The forum's filled with "practice makes permanent, not perfect". Knowing how to practice actually requires you to already know what you need to know. Having a (good) teacher helps to alleviate this problem, but learning by yourself is possible too with the right sources/attitude. It also helps with seeing progress easier and having some way to measure it so your motivation doesn't burn out. Practicing a long time, not knowing you're using the wrong way, and not seeing any progress does make you want to gouge your own eyes out. The issue with playing music is that it combines both the left and right part of the brain, something a lot of people are not used to. Some sports can be a way of combining these, but the same goes for other things that combine emotion with analytical thinking.

You do raise a very, very valid point though. Expectations from people who are used to long, hard practice are more realistic. The practicing itself might not be more efficient, but the motivation is. They know it will take a long time before they reach a certain goal, and will know not to base their entire happiness on that single goal. Work ethic is probably a very large part of the difference.

I have a (rather small) background in dancing, and I believe the best thing I got out of it was enjoying the ride. When I just started I enjoyed it, even though I couldn't even play anything real. Seeing the effects of practicing in other areas also made me believe more in progress to come, and not being afraid to fail or making a fool out of myself.

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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by RoundI » April 14th, 2011, 6:00 am

I think there is no better option than to get a teacher to help you with the physical side of playing. Posture, finger position wrist etc are important basics. Even if you only go to a teacher for a couple of months in the beginning. I feel a lot of the challenge in guitar is physical as well as mental. Muscle memory and conditioning. I remember the muscles of my left hand being sore from the new movements it was forced to do. It all takes time.

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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by size9 » April 14th, 2011, 10:50 am

RoundI wrote:I think there is no better option than to get a teacher to help you with the physical side of playing. Posture, finger position wrist etc are important basics. Even if you only go to a teacher for a couple of months in the beginning. I feel a lot of the challenge in guitar is physical as well as mental. Muscle memory and conditioning. I remember the muscles of my left hand being sore from the new movements it was forced to do. It all takes time.
I Soooo agree! I think if you set yourself up with some really good habits with a teacher.... The lessons you find here and anywhere on the internet will make learning much easier. It's so easy to get into bad habits. Having a teacher right there to help in the beginning is HUGE!

I also agee with the "practice makes permanent". I started out teaching myself and it took forever for me to re-learn things from bad habits. :mrgreen:
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Re: Lessons to jam not to become a musician

Post by Johnny Lee » April 14th, 2011, 7:25 pm

size9 wrote:
RoundI wrote:
I also agee with the "practice makes permanent". I started out teaching myself and it took forever for me to re-learn things from bad habits. :mrgreen:
As someone who is mostly self-taught, I can relate to that. I developed a few bad habits in the beginning. But the best way I found to overcome them was 1) learning the proper ways to do things of course 2) STOP playing for a while, then get back into it. It's true some habits are hard to get rid of than others, depending on hard you've drilled it into your nervous system, but by and large taking a bit of a break (which is pretty difficult for some) made a huge difference in how easily I could overcome bad habits.

I guess it's kinda like not practicing anything for a while. You'll get "worse" at it. And if it's a bad habit, you actually WANT TO get worse at it so you can redo things the right way :mrgreen:
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