Author Topic: For the "campfire" type guitarist?  (Read 890 times)

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Offline Garth

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For the "campfire" type guitarist?
« on: October 13, 2020, 04:23:44 am »
I'm 69. I'm not looking to be a rock star, a truly complete player, an expert in music theory, play in a band, etc. My goal is simply to be able to competently strum using an accoustic guitar a range of songs using a selection of "essential" chords ... hence the "campfire" term. At this point I'm not interested in being a lead guitar god, finger picker or even things like scores of multiple chord shapes, barre or power chords, etc ... unless some are really necessary. This could change down the road but for now my goals are simple. I suspect I'm not alone. You might call it being a decent but minimalist guitar player.

With that said, it would be nice if their was a path through the current lessons with this basic level in mind, and possibly some specific side lessons as well. For example, what would be the minimum chords to learn to open up a decent range of songs? Right now I've finished Grade 1 so have learned 8 chords. What others should I add? Starting Grade 2, I got a bit turned of thinking I had to learn all those largely alternate 3/4 chords where maybe what I should be focusing on are more basic chords like B and F and ??

Justin or others, any thoughts on this? Not everyone starts off wanting to be an expert and complete guitarist.

Thx

Garth

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Offline Drubbing

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Re: For the "campfire" type guitarist?
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2020, 06:06:20 am »
Do all the chords in the beginners course - Open, Barre, minors and 7s. To play a wide range of songs, you'll need need most of them, their technique is important to learn. Also learn as many songs during the course as possible - they're all strummers.

There is no specific path for how you want to learn, but as a minimum you'll need to complete the beginners course in full.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2020, 08:09:44 am by Drubbing »

Offline DavidP

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Re: For the "campfire" type guitarist?
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2020, 06:57:24 am »
As Drubbing says, just follow that Beginners Course, keep learning songs, and I reckon you'll get where you want to be.

Offline GregB

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Re: For the "campfire" type guitarist?
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2020, 08:23:53 am »
One could argue the OP would be better following the classic beginners course rather than the new one based on his goals.
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Offline DavidP

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Re: For the "campfire" type guitarist?
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2020, 09:07:21 am »
One could argue the OP would be better following the classic beginners course rather than the new one based on his goals.

My assumption would be that the two lead one to ultimately the same level of ability? And that the new is the new and improved Classic. Is that not correct?

What would be your reasoning for making the suggestion, to help the OP understand the option.

Offline close2u

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Re: For the "campfire" type guitarist?
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2020, 09:26:49 am »
Hey Garth, welcome to the forum and congratulations on getting through Grade 1.
Having got there I would emphasise the absolute necessity to learn songs, learn songs, learn songs.
Lots of them.
Justin says at least ten.
I ask you to think of the 'at least' in that concept.
There are hundreds / thousands of songs using the chords you already know and Justin has lessons for dozens of them.
But don't stop there. Keep going with the beginners course.
From what you describe the only lessons you may not see as relevant are the blues improv ones.
I would even suggest you learn a tiny little bit of basic music theory as it will help you understand why some chords go well together and be able to anticipate and remember chord progressions in songs so much easier.

Offline J.W.C.

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Re: For the "campfire" type guitarist?
« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2020, 04:21:33 pm »
Welcome, Garth. That sounds like a completely worthy goal.

I'd say you'll want to learn and focus on the following:
  • Songs - others pointed this out, and I'm editing this post to put it first in this list because of its importance. Learn complete songs, right from the beginning, as soon as you know two or three open chords. Keep learning songs.
  • Open Chords - including sus chords and variations.
  • Barre Chords - E and A shape barre chords, to start with, but the more chord grips you can get under your fingers, the better.
  • Rhythm - super, super important. Practice everything to a metronome or a drum beat. Can't stress this enough. You'll also want to understand the basics of time signatures and counting beats.
  • Strumming patterns - obviously connected to rhythm, but I use "rhythm," above, in the general sense of developing your timing.
  • Rhythmic Techniques - stuff like muting, etc.
  • Fretboard knowledge - you'll need at least some of this to know where to play different barre/moveable chords, for example. To start with, learning the notes of the 6th and 5th strings will be useful. Those are where the "root notes" of the chords will be, most of the time.
I also think that at least some music theory will be useful. You needn't become a theory expert, but understanding the basics will help make more sense of things like what chords go together.

Learning how and why to use a capo will also be useful.

I think the above would get you pretty far. I think most of it is in the beginner course, and some might be in the intermediate course.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2020, 07:50:50 pm by J.W.C. »

Online sairfingers

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Re: For the "campfire" type guitarist?
« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2020, 05:09:48 pm »
I'm 69. I'm not looking to be a rock star, At this point I'm not interested in being a lead guitar god, finger picker or even things like scores of multiple chord shapes, barre or power chords, etc ... unless some are really necessary. This could change down the road but for now my goals are simple.
Hi Garth. I think you may surprise yourself. I’m now 66 and started learning with Justin two and a half years ago. When I started the Beginners Course I sometimes peeked ahead at the lessons to come and thought “power chords, barre chords, fingerpicking, I doubt if I’m ever going to manage that, a handful of chords will do me”.

I’ve completed the Beginners Course (classic) and am now following the Intermediate Course. I can do a lot of the things I never thought possible. Clearly I’m still a relative beginner and have a long way to go and much improvement is required in all areas but my point is I’ve achieved things I didn’t think possible.

Play songs and post them on the forum for other members to listen to and comment on? No way. Well I’ve now done that a few times and got very supportive and encouraging comments from my fellow community members.

Ok, neither of us are going to be rock gods or indeed want to be at this stage in life, but just take it a step at a time and you’ll find yourself in a place you never thought you’d be. Your goal may well change. Good luck.
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Offline GregB

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Re: For the "campfire" type guitarist?
« Reply #8 on: October 13, 2020, 05:13:14 pm »
My assumption would be that the two lead one to ultimately the same level of ability? And that the new is the new and improved Classic. Is that not correct?

What would be your reasoning for making the suggestion, to help the OP understand the option.

Hi David, my reasoning being there appears to be more riffs and blues stuff in the early parts of new course which is great but maybe no so important if your goal is to play campfire songs only.
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Offline DavidP

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Re: For the "campfire" type guitarist?
« Reply #9 on: October 13, 2020, 05:39:28 pm »
Hi David, my reasoning being there appears to be more riffs and blues stuff in the early parts of new course which is great but maybe no so important if your goal is to play campfire songs only.

Thanks Greg.

Online DarrellW

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Re: For the "campfire" type guitarist?
« Reply #10 on: October 13, 2020, 06:31:06 pm »
Hi David, my reasoning being there appears to be more riffs and blues stuff in the early parts of new course which is great but maybe no so important if your goal is to play campfire songs only.
Quite agree with you, chords, strumming patterns and learn songs, learn songs..... learn songs!
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Offline Garth

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Re: For the "campfire" type guitarist?
« Reply #11 on: October 14, 2020, 12:45:05 am »
Thanks to all for the good advice and encouragement! One day/week/month at a time ... with no real shortcuts.

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