Skip to content
What Things Are You...
 
Notifications
Clear all

What Things Are You Working On Now, And Why?

Page 3 / 5

(@chris-c)
Famed Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 3460
 

Hi, good to see everybody at GN again,

I've spent most of the last few months learning to play a bit of keyboards, as part of an ongoing attempt to gain a few skills that I can use to tape some of my own songs instead of just writing lyrics. Great to see that the Kens are apparently having a go at some of my words. :) Now if I could only do the same..... One day, one day...

I've also been playing in a band. You'll have to excuse me if I casually drop that into the next couple of hundred posts. But when you start late and are just basically fiddling around for fun at 61, you don't really expect to be asked to play in a band. It's really just a trio though - one guy on mandolin, another on either banjo or guitar, and myself playing rhythm guitar. We play every week in the local music shop and anybody who strolls in can pick up an instrument and join in. So we get some of the teachers jamming along before lessons, the odd customer or two, etc. Last week we had a cello join in, and the week before a guy on banjo and his 4 year old son on juice bottle percussion. It's exactly how I had always dreamed that music should be like - casual, sociable and above all great fun. We laugh almost as much as we play. :D

We play all sorts of stuff from traditional and folk to rock, pop etc. Even the odd bit of Bach and Spanish. So this week I've been working on learning a tune called Portsmouth on guitar and on piano (Mike Oldfield did a version years ago). We're also working on Those Were The Days (Mary Hopkins had a hit with it) and a variety of stuff from Dust in The Wind and Every Breath You Take, through to... well, whatever anybody fancies having a crack at really.

Tomorrow's the day, so I'd better get on with some practice. (By the way, did I remember to mention that I've been Playing in a Band at all???)

Cheers,

Chris


ReplyQuote
(@spides)
Estimable Member
Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 157
 

Hi, good to see everybody at GN again,

I've spent most of the last few months learning to play a bit of keyboards, as part of an ongoing attempt to gain a few skills that I can use to tape some of my own songs instead of just writing lyrics. Great to see that the Kens are apparently having a go at some of my words. :) Now if I could only do the same..... One day, one day...

I've also been playing in a band. You'll have to excuse me if I casually drop that into the next couple of hundred posts. But when you start late and are just basically fiddling around for fun at 61, you don't really expect to be asked to play in a band. It's really just a trio though - one guy on mandolin, another on either banjo or guitar, and myself playing rhythm guitar. We play every week in the local music shop and anybody who strolls in can pick up an instrument and join in. So we get some of the teachers jamming along before lessons, the odd customer or two, etc. Last week we had a cello join in, and the week before a guy on banjo and his 4 year old son on juice bottle percussion. It's exactly how I had always dreamed that music should be like - casual, sociable and above all great fun. We laugh almost as much as we play. :D

We play all sorts of stuff from traditional and folk to rock, pop etc. Even the odd bit of Bach and Spanish. So this week I've been working on learning a tune called Portsmouth on guitar and on piano (Mike Oldfield did a version years ago). We're also working on Those Were The Days (Mary Hopkins had a hit with it) and a variety of stuff from Dust in The Wind and Every Breath You Take, through to... well, whatever anybody fancies having a crack at really.

Tomorrow's the day, so I'd better get on with some practice. (By the way, did I remember to mention that I've been Playing in a Band at all???)

Cheers,

Chris

Dude that is fantastic. I wish there were more things like that going on, nothing beats an open jam.

Don't sweat it dude, just play!


ReplyQuote
 cnev
(@cnev)
Famed Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 4478
 

Chris C sounds like you're loving every minute..good stuff

As for me..I little of this and that. Current song is War Pigs the old Black Sabbath song although there are some fast runs in the solo that may take the rest of my life to get down but what the heck I'm not going anywhere.

Haven't started it yet but I want to learn the new Weezer song, Pork and Beans, why, it's new and we've been playing a couple of older Weezer songs lately so it would be a good fit.

Plus the 12 or so songs we've been playing as a group.

I've been messing around trying to sing and play a bit lately, for no other reason than for personal torture. I don't plan on making any public appearances anytime soon.

"It's all about stickin it to the man!"
It's a long way to the top if you want to rock n roll!


ReplyQuote
(@rparker)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 5492
Topic starter  

I've been messing around trying to sing and play a bit lately, for no other reason than for personal torture. I don't plan on making any public appearances anytime soon.

I hear ya. Can't be worse than my singing efforts. My grandmother just re-appeared and told me to knock it off. Scary old broad.....

I just tried to sing out more. Not hard to do when you're amp is a bit loud. It's better, but no where near humanly acceptable unless stuck in Guantanimo. They'd be better off being the subject of nutrient deprevation studies. I'd post it, but for some reason, recording turns my playing into crap. I missed a Am to Dm change 4 or 5 times out of 5.

Roy
"I wonder if a composer ever intentionally composed a piece that was physically impossible to play and stuck it away to be found years later after his death, knowing it would forever drive perfectionist musicians crazy." - George Carlin


ReplyQuote
(@vic-lewis-vl)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 10340
 

By the way, did I remember to mention that I've been Playing in a Band at all?

No , I don't think you did. Great fun, isn't it! Good timing on the "Portsmouth" song - Portsmouth FC just won the FA Cup for the first time since 1939, you must have inspired them. Perhaps we can get you to work on "You'll Never Walk Alone" then Liverpool might win the league next season?

Good to see you back, Chris!

:D :D :D

Vic

"Sometimes the beauty of music can help us all find strength to deal with all the curves life can throw us." (D. Hodge.)


ReplyQuote
(@citizennoir)
Noble Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 1248
 

I'd post it, but for some reason, recording turns my playing into crap. I missed a Am to Dm change 4 or 5 times out of 5.

When that happens to me, I'll press record and play/sing thru the entire first verse (which inevitebly is horrid both in playing and in singing), then I'll keep it going and just do the first verse again which has me more relaxed in playing and my voice is 'closer' to being in key by then.

Then just edit the 'first' first verse out.

In case that wasn't clear - Just keep playing thru the mistakes and make the second verse a redo of the first without stopping :D

Ken

"The man who has begun to live more seriously within
begins to live more simply without"
-Ernest Hemingway

"A genuine individual is an outright nuisance in a factory"
-Orson Welles


ReplyQuote
(@aleholder)
Trusted Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 52
 

Let's see. I'm working on the Gospel Blues lesson in 'Blues You can Use'. I bought that book based on recommendations from here. I'm finishing up Beginning Blues Keyboard lesson book. I'm also working on singing and playing a bunch of acoustic songs. My problem is not strumming and singing to them, it's getting them memorized. I can't keep one in my head, let alone a full set list.


ReplyQuote
(@sparky1ma)
Trusted Member
Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 54
 

I've been working on several things lately: 1) Cats in the Cradle (you're killing me slowly with that one David :) )I want to play it for my family for Christmas, 2) Getting back to working on scales(with my metronome), I've been working on cats...cradle for so long I kind of let everything else get away from me (again thanks David :) ). 3) Trying to find and play through easy 3 and 4 chord songs, because my chord changes are AWFUL, and my ryth. is even worse I've also been trying different easy licks and riffs,(American Woman, Godzilla, The Joker, Last Child, etc. (I picked up a 70's riff book), they are more of a confidence builder though. Most of all though, just trying to play (if can call what I do playing :? ) and have fun. :D

Where am I going....and why am I in this hand basket?


ReplyQuote
(@katmetal)
Honorable Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 727
 

. I'd post it, but for some reason, recording turns my playing into crap. I missed a Am to Dm change 4 or 5 times out of 5 That's the best excuse I've heard in a long time! I will remember to use it!

Another one is, "It only sounds bad to YOU"


ReplyQuote
(@chris-c)
Famed Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 3460
 

When that happens to me, I'll press record and play/sing thru the entire first verse (which inevitebly is horrid both in playing and in singing), then I'll keep it going and just do the first verse again which has me more relaxed in playing and my voice is 'closer' to being in key by then.

Then just edit the 'first' first verse out.

Ken

Excellent advice from Ken. Stop/start recording can end up increasing the stress and making it all worse. Ploughing on is the go.

It really does pay to spend a bit of time learning how to use the editing software. Even if you don't get as far as learning how to 'patch' in over mistakes, just basic editing can fix up a heap of stuff. If the pro studios feel comfortable about fixng up takes, then I'm not going to lose any sleep over it...

A couple of months ago I had to record all 10 short piano pieces that I'd learned (the teacher was being assessed to see if he was teaching his students OK). The first 9 went OK but I hadn't put enough practice in on the 10th and I just wasn't fast or accurate enough. But I wanted to get them all out of the way. So I literally recorded it a bar at a time. Play one bar - stop - move fingers - take deep breath - record next bar or two - pause.... etc. Then I edited all the pauses out. It sounded surprisingly OK. A week later I did do a full speed take though (honestly...). It just really helps to know that a mistake isn't going to ruin the entire take every time, so you relax and, hey, make less mistakes anyway. :D

Chris


ReplyQuote
(@cheesehead54)
Eminent Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 37
 

What a great post. I sat down and thought I would make up a set or two myself. In a very short time I realized how many songs I know, almost complete. I thought I knew them, but when I sat down and played the entire song I would fall just short on about half of them. I am now making two lists. One complete and one too finish.
AS far as what I'm working on now.
Your love --- outfield. Great song, easy to play and everyone knows it. Hard to sing with.
Anyone else but you ---- Moldy peaches. The final song in the movie Juno. G and C7. Grandkids love it and sing with it.
Voodo child-- Hendrix. I have always played the intro, just never mastered the rest.
Cinnamon Girl --- Neil Young. Thank you Mr. Hodge.
Long haired country boy -- Charlie Daniels. Love Country Rock.
Everybody Hurts -- REM. Again, easy to play but hard to sing.
I must thank everyone from GN for this is the reason I am advancing as fast as I have. I am playing in front of strangers now and that is something I never thought would happen.
One more quick question. Has anyone else noticed that it is easier (sometimes) to play in front of strangers than in front of friends or is that just my hang-up?


ReplyQuote
(@davidhodge)
Member Moderator
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 4485
 

One more quick question. Has anyone else noticed that it is easier (sometimes) to play in front of strangers than in front of friends or is that just my hang-up?

You should start a separate thread on this topic! For the longest time, I would havee agreed with you - lots easier to play before complete strangers than in front of friends. It used to be the better the friend, the harder it was. But (big surprise coming) with practice and opportunity, not to mention making the time and opportunity to play for friends, it all eventually evened out. "Eventually" is in terms of several years, by the bye...

Peace


ReplyQuote
(@blueline)
Noble Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 1705
 

Fair warning, anything I post today is subject to change tomorrow. That's the sad truth.

Here goes:

1-Working on a song with several others to participate in the 1st annual GN Virtual Battle of the Bands. Having lots of fun with it.
2-Song List: Working on the bits and pieces of Sister Luck, Bad Luck Blue Eyes Goodbye and Sometimes Salvation by the Black Crowes – Why, trying to learn how to do fills and get back to barre chords.
3-Writing a few original songs. Why, recently divorced. You do the math. + I go t a new 12 String! Will post some pics

Teamwork- A few harmless flakes working together can unleash an avalanche of destruction.


ReplyQuote
(@tmarius)
Eminent Member
Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 49
 

My two cents:

At the moment just jamming along with some tracks to work on my blues leads, not terribly hard, but great fun :D I could feel myself getting burnt out with my guitar a bit so i'm back to just playing some fun AC/DC and other rock songs just to chill out a bit. Once i find some motivation again i think i'll work harder on some finger picking arrangements, ie classical gas and maybe tears in heaven


ReplyQuote
(@chris-c)
Famed Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 3460
 

Good timing on the "Portsmouth" song - Portsmouth FC just won the FA Cup for the first time since 1939, you must have inspired them. Perhaps we can get you to work on "You'll Never Walk Alone" then Liverpool might win the league next season?

I'll see what I can do. Maybe I do have some hitherto undiscovered soccer mojo... :)

I did actually sit up to small hours of the morning watching Portsmouth v Cardiff, just to see what the FA cup was all about. One day I'll have to get you to explain the finer attractions of watching 22 men run up and down a pitch for 90 minutes with the net result of ONE lousy goal. I was beginning to see why sections of the fans apparently find fighting with each other more entertaining than the game.

Maybe Liverpool are just better to watch though....

Cheers,

Chris


ReplyQuote
Page 3 / 5