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#21 slwiegel

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 02:22 PM

I am NOT a codgetay old timer; I am a 78 years old L&MG guitar studen who never gets tired of repeating this poem written by Joe Anonymous:


No insult intended - I can assure you. In fact, I owe you a big "Thank You."

People sometimes think you answer too aggressively on some of the issues posted. However, your no BS attitude was an inspiration to me on more than one occasion and helped push me to do what I needed to. Your life has been much harder than mine in the past year - yet you persevered and continue to play and learn. I admire that.

And, I wasn't kidding when I said that you inspired me to get started with this course in particular. I really was trying to tell myself that guitar was for young people only - a foolish attitude at best. It just takes us old farts a little longer to get started in the morning...
Nearing the final turn...

#22 slwiegel

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 02:03 PM

Just trying to give back to the community. I haven't been able to contribute for nearly a year due to personal commitments - but things are getting a little easier over the past month.

Without this sight and some of the people who have posted wonderful information - it would have taken me much longer to get where I am at.

I will say it again more clearly - in the final analysis I was my own worst enemy when it came to progress in music. I wasted many days trying to research easier ways to accomplish my goals. But in the final analysis, the only thing that I really needed to do was bear down and learn that which was being taught and give my body time to adjust to the physical demands of the guitar...

Hopefully someone else will pick up that neglected guitar in the corner and start playing again with a slightly different attitude - it works wonders.
Nearing the final turn...

#23 JWELLS

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 01:53 PM

I am NOT a codgetay old timer; I am a 78 years old L&MG guitar studen who never gets tired of repeating this poem written by Joe Anonymous:
“The Thing That Couldn’t Be Done”

Somebody said it couldn’t be done,
But he with a twinkle replied
That maybe it couldn’t, but he would be one
Who wouldn’t say so ‘til he tried.

He started right in, with a bit of a grin
On his face; if he worried he hid it.
He started to sing as he tackled the thing
That couldn’t be done—and he did it!

Lotsa luck! :)
Dreams alone won't go very far; Perfect practice will make you a star.

#24 J45

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 12:42 PM

Glad to hear you're now one of thy converts. :D
Greg
Gibson J45 Custom, Larrivee L-03R Acoustic; Fender American Standard Strat; Fender Blacktop Tele; Fender 52' Vintage Hot Rod Tele; Fender Super Sonic 22; Fender Mustang II Amp; Ultrasound AG-30 Acoustic Amp; Roland RD-700NX Digital Piano; Nikon D7000 DSLR

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#25 JoeD

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 10:46 AM

Nicely said!
Fat Fingers Joe

#26 wa7nd23

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 07:38 AM

Thanks for the inspiration!

Capt. Rick
Lesson 2

#27 Broadus

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 05:10 AM

One of the most encouraging posts I've read on any guitar forum. I started with the guitar this time around at age 52 (learned a few chords in college and had not played since) and tried to learn with various books and CD's for a couple of years. Wanted a systematic system that involved reading music, so I started with the Mel Bay Modern Guitar Method, expanded ed. I was about half way through the first book when I became convinced that LMG was legitimate. The Mel Bay work got me quickly into Session 4, and I'm loving every minute of it. I am convinced that if I will hang with it that I will be where you are talking about within a couple of years.

Thanks for sharing.
Bill

The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy him forever (Westminster Shorter Catechism, 1647).

#28 slwiegel

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 01:07 AM

...that I was too old to play guitar. But in doing research on how to learn to play guitar I came across a forum with a codgety old timer who goes by the handle JWells. I am only nearing fifty - he has me by several years and plays well. I now realize what a silly excuse that was.

...that the fingers on my left hand were going to fall off after working on "simple" excercises in Session 1. I mean, it takes a lot of pressure to hold down that string - surely there is some simpler way to accomplish this. Now the only thing that bothers me are full note bends on the bottom string - and I have to play a lot of them to have any discomfort.

...that my fingers and mind would never be able to play the songs in Session 1 at 60 bpm. I mean, I had to THINK about every movement, what exactly is that note I see, where is that note I am supposed to play, when is that beat going to hit, dang missed it again, now I have less time to find the next note. I now play Jingle Bells and Ode to Joy at any speed I choose in five different places on the guitar.

...that because my goal was to be a bedroom blues player I didn't really need to spend any time learning how to read music. I mean, the great blues players SURELY never learned to read music - and there are lots of tabs out there. Session 4 was a bit torturous for me because of this attitude. I did think that I had chosen the wrong course more than once during this period. I now know that understanding musical syntax was a critical first step for me to be able to understand the music that I hear on a daily basis. Without notes - you won't have understandable scales; without scales you will never gain an appreciation for intervals and the relationships between notes; without this musical understanding - you will simply be one of those guys who, when he hears a cool new riff, has to ask "Hey - how do you play that." While I am still early in my journey with the guitar - I can now watch Steve play lots of different things and UNDERSTAND exactly what he is doing musically (I still can't play some of it though...). I can hear and UNDERSTAND exactly which power chords are used in my favorite rock songs. WOW - Using Steve's method I don't need Tab, I just need to play a little faster, cleaner and add more embellishments.

...that I would never get control over my pinky. It wouldn't even play notes on the fourth fret - how did Steve expect me to play notes on the fifth fret with it? I mean, was Steve seriously insane when he first announced in the course that eventually that pinky would cover not one - but two different frets that far away from its current comfort zone of hanging right next to my ring finger and flying randomly away from the fretboard when I thought too hard about it? My pinky is a champion contributor to my playing at this point in time and now reaches five frets - six if I move down to fret five as a root. I would have never believed this when I started having problems stretching and controlling my pinky.

...that I would never get a clean G chord. But then it became Dm. But then it became B7. But then it became barre chords. But then it became E2 and G2. Now I understand that the only thing keeping me from playing any chord cleanly is an appropriate amount of practice and sometimes stretching exercises.

...that scales were so boring I didn't need to play them. I now play pentatonic, blues, and Three Note on a String scales for warmup and love every minute of it. On a daily basis I am building a better understanding of music through scales. On a daily basis I am building useful speed through scales. On a daily basis I am building a better understanding of where the notes are on the fretboard. Dorian, Locrian, Lydian, et al used to be less than useful names for poorly understood concepts - I now see how they make the exact same notes behave differently. I used to fret (pun intended) about where to stop a bend at. I now stop it at the appropriate interval of the scale nearly automatically. I couldn't have changed my understanding of where to stop a bend without months of playing scales and familiarizing myself with the notes and intervals.

I could go on and on about what I have discovered over the past two years while learning to play the guitar. But my real purpose for posting this long boring stuff is to hopefully help someone else on their journey. I had a lot of doubts about my abilities, I had a lot of doubts about the course, but in the end I have pretty much faithfully followed through what Steve has suggested, in the order that he has suggested, and have become a guitar player in only two years.

So, if you are currently sitting there thinking one of these thoughts:

I can't do this...

THis is boring... I just wanna play a song

John plays well and doesn't know how to read music, so why should I waste my time...

Let me assure you that you can learn how to play correctly. It takes time and perseverance more than any other thing to learn how to play guitar. You must build strength, muscle memory, and reflexes that do not come overnight. You must build an understanding of the structure of music. These things only come through constant repetition and exposure - and it takes both physical and mental perseverance to get there.

So my biggest tip to the newbies - no matter where you are at, work hard to advance to the next level. Don't let any of the excuses that your body or mind throw in front of you deter you from your goal of becoming a guitar player. The physical and mental skills that Steve teaches make playing guitar a LOT easier in the long run. The bad thing is that you will never see the truth in that statement until you are at a point where the truth of that statement no longer matters...

#29 Plum1967

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 03:52 AM

As someone who is anxiously awaiting the arrival in 2 days of her program, as well as the arrival in 3 days of her lovely new left handed Luna Trinity guitar, I can't thank you enough for your words of wisdom! I intend to share them with my daughter, who is also getting her first guitar for Christmas. She's only 12, and I don't know that she'll "get it." I hope she does. While her inspiration is Taylor Swift, I hope that she will come to understand that skill comes with practice, practice, practice!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all! :electricguitar:

#30 gotto

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Posted 07 January 2011 - 12:44 AM

I like to return to this post whenever I undertake another seemingly insurmountable guitar related task that seems to stall out on me. I think this post should be required reading for all who need encouragement along the path regardless of where they are in this musical experience.

Greg

#31 rjrios63

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Posted 07 January 2011 - 06:02 AM

What a great post! Like others, I found it at just the right time. Thank you so much for the time and thought that went in to it.

Rick

#32 DONAL

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Posted 14 January 2011 - 04:33 AM

How apropos, sitting here with all the Key Signatures, Scales, Bar Chords and trying to stay in tempo, I really needed to see your post right now, I hit a brick wall very hard about 3 days ago and now I am ready to attack with force.
Thank you very much for sharing what you have experienced in your journey through this course it has really inspired me and obviously many others in the Forum. I hope that that I am interpetting that this post is PINNED properly in that pinned means it will stay at the top of this part of the forum where many others will benefit from it.
Allen D Rude

#33 bach

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Posted 02 February 2011 - 11:13 PM

Great stuff. Rock on!

#34 ZEB

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 03:02 PM

This post was very encouraging. Thanks.

#35 jenikcarl

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Posted 23 March 2011 - 04:29 AM

Wonderful post :) I am a beginner getting frustrated with not being able to hit notes on 2 diff strings and sometimes think - Atleast I tried. But...

The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
-Robert Frost
"It takes a lot of devotion and work , or maybe I should say play, because if you love it, that's what it amounts to. I haven't found any shortcuts, and I've been looking for a long time." - Chet Atkins

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#36 Steve Krenz

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Posted 23 March 2011 - 12:06 PM

If you have not yet read the first post in this thread, please take a moment and read it. I think this is one of the most important threads in the entire discussion board. It should be required reading for everyone who gets the course and is trying to learn how to play.

- Steve

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#37 Gary Less

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Posted 24 March 2011 - 11:37 PM

Great post, maybe should have its own spot on the board, i only came across it today.
"OH WELL"

#38 123456

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Posted 25 March 2011 - 10:33 PM

This is a great post and should be the "Preface" or the very first page of the LMG workbook!

#39 cwcaesar

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Posted 29 March 2011 - 02:21 PM

That is just so well put! I thought that at 33 I was getting too old to learn, but after checking out the forum here, I seem to be middle of the road (or even young). Thank you so much for the encouragement!
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#40 KJR

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Posted 12 May 2011 - 04:33 PM

What a great message this is to newbies, slwiegel.
I started playing at 52 with Steve, a used strat and The Course just 5 months ago and I'm through session 5. I couldn't be happier with my own progress. For decades I've loved the guitar, always back burnering the idea of playing. Marriage, kids, homeowning, work, you name it. It could be that now I have the time or possibly the patience. All I know, it's never to late to try, learn, something new. Old dogs can learn new tricks and some tricks are really cool. I love music of all varieties and the blues really stir my mojo.

Never stop learning, it keeps you young...
.... I've been eyeballing this used surfboard...




...that I was too old to play guitar. But in doing research on how to learn to play guitar I came across a forum with a codgety old timer who goes by the handle JWells. I am only nearing fifty - he has me by several years and plays well. I now realize what a silly excuse that was.


...that the fingers on my left hand were going to fall off after working on "simple" excercises in Session 1. I mean, it takes a lot of pressure to hold down that string - surely there is some simpler way to accomplish this. Now the only thing that bothers me are full note bends on the bottom string - and I have to play a lot of them to have any discomfort.


...that my fingers and mind would never be able to play the songs in Session 1 at 60 bpm. I mean, I had to THINK about every movement, what exactly is that note I see, where is that note I am supposed to play, when is that beat going to hit, dang missed it again, now I have less time to find the next note. I now play Jingle Bells and Ode to Joy at any speed I choose in five different places on the guitar.


...that because my goal was to be a bedroom blues player I didn't really need to spend any time learning how to read music. I mean, the great blues players SURELY never learned to read music - and there are lots of tabs out there. Session 4 was a bit torturous for me because of this attitude. I did think that I had chosen the wrong course more than once during this period. I now know that understanding musical syntax was a critical first step for me to be able to understand the music that I hear on a daily basis. Without notes - you won't have understandable scales; without scales you will never gain an appreciation for intervals and the relationships between notes; without this musical understanding - you will simply be one of those guys who, when he hears a cool new riff, has to ask "Hey - how do you play that." While I am still early in my journey with the guitar - I can now watch Steve play lots of different things and UNDERSTAND exactly what he is doing musically (I still can't play some of it though...). I can hear and UNDERSTAND exactly which power chords are used in my favorite rock songs. WOW - Using Steve's method I don't need Tab, I just need to play a little faster, cleaner and add more embellishments.


...that I would never get control over my pinky. It wouldn't even play notes on the fourth fret - how did Steve expect me to play notes on the fifth fret with it? I mean, was Steve seriously insane when he first announced in the course that eventually that pinky would cover not one - but two different frets that far away from its current comfort zone of hanging right next to my ring finger and flying randomly away from the fretboard when I thought too hard about it? My pinky is a champion contributor to my playing at this point in time and now reaches five frets - six if I move down to fret five as a root. I would have never believed this when I started having problems stretching and controlling my pinky.


...that I would never get a clean G chord. But then it became Dm. But then it became B7. But then it became barre chords. But then it became E2 and G2. Now I understand that the only thing keeping me from playing any chord cleanly is an appropriate amount of practice and sometimes stretching exercises.


...that scales were so boring I didn't need to play them. I now play pentatonic, blues, and Three Note on a String scales for warmup and love every minute of it. On a daily basis I am building a better understanding of music through scales. On a daily basis I am building useful speed through scales. On a daily basis I am building a better understanding of where the notes are on the fretboard. Dorian, Locrian, Lydian, et al used to be less than useful names for poorly understood concepts - I now see how they make the exact same notes behave differently. I used to fret (pun intended) about where to stop a bend at. I now stop it at the appropriate interval of the scale nearly automatically. I couldn't have changed my understanding of where to stop a bend without months of playing scales and familiarizing myself with the notes and intervals.


I could go on and on about what I have discovered over the past two years while learning to play the guitar. But my real purpose for posting this long boring stuff is to hopefully help someone else on their journey. I had a lot of doubts about my abilities, I had a lot of doubts about the course, but in the end I have pretty much faithfully followed through what Steve has suggested, in the order that he has suggested, and have become a guitar player in only two years.


So, if you are currently sitting there thinking one of these thoughts:


I can't do this...


THis is boring... I just wanna play a song


John plays well and doesn't know how to read music, so why should I waste my time...


Let me assure you that you can learn how to play correctly. It takes time and perseverance more than any other thing to learn how to play guitar. You must build strength, muscle memory, and reflexes that do not come overnight. You must build an understanding of the structure of music. These things only come through constant repetition and exposure - and it takes both physical and mental perseverance to get there.


So my biggest tip to the newbies - no matter where you are at, work hard to advance to the next level. Don't let any of the excuses that your body or mind throw in front of you deter you from your goal of becoming a guitar player. The physical and mental skills that Steve teaches make playing guitar a LOT easier in the long run. The bad thing is that you will never see the truth in that statement until you are at a point where the truth of that statement no longer matters...






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