Author Topic: Skeldol's Road Case  (Read 853 times)

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Offline skeldol

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Skeldol's Road Case
« on: November 01, 2020, 11:54:22 am »
Thought I should write something up as a kind of guitar diary.


THE BEGINNING
I started playing back in March/April time (no prior experience). My daughter was learning guitar, I'd always wanted to learn a musical instrument & lockdown meant the time was right.  Previously my time had been spent running & rock climbing, I was methodical at improving at both & expected a similar approach would lead to good improvements on guitar.  I kind of hoped that by practicing a lot on the guitar & surely improving my kids would see that practice is the key to getting good at anything.  That didn't work, instead my kids decided that I learnt stuff fast.........

The wife is musical (piano grade 7) and she purchased a secondhand Yahama G120A for us to learn on. 

I thought it sounded great.  But I was confused, why did my strings sound so different to the guy on Youtube?  After a minute or two I realized I was holding a right handed guitar left handed, I'd never considered a guitar could be left or right handed before, I am lefthanded.  I agnoized over whether to buy a left handed guitar, even purchased one on ebay but within minutes cancelled the order.  I thought the guitar stuff I bought should be shareable by the family and that meant right handed.

ONE MONTH IN
So I found Justin Guitar and after learning a couple of chords decided to focus on Mad World.  When I started on Mad World I knew D & A & 4 beat down strumming, that meant I had to learn G, Em & Old Faithful.  I obsessed at it, always thinking I was getting close to a breakthrough.  Around 5-6 weeks I decided I was OK at it & it was time to re-focus on Justin's course. 
https://soundcloud.com/leon-skeldon/mad-world-end-of-april-week-1

As an aside to Justin's course I found myself really drawn to fingerstyle & started to learn Sound of Silence, it is something that has been a long term goal on my journey.  My approach has been to dedicate 30 minutes a day to Justin's course and the rest I use to keep some variety.
https://soundcloud.com/leon-skeldon/sound-of-silence-1-month-guitar -early attempt at SoS, I knew it was WAY too hard for me but its such a cool song!

THREE MONTHS IN
Three months in and I start to wonder if an electric guitar would be fun.  I'd always considered electric guitars as metal or rock instruments, then I start hearing cleans like this guy plays https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5rwlPfMjs4&t=230s and I realize how amazing electric guitars can sound.  The internet seems pretty conclusive, Yamaha PAC 112V is the best all round beginner electric guitar so its an easy decision for me..... 

The amp decision is MUCH harder.  I spend ages researching when a friend says the Orange Micro Terror is really cool so I order one, only then do I research the amp...... I start to realize I've bought something for rock and metal (why isnt an amp just an amp???? amplify sound???) so I start a thread on Justin's forum... "I like clean tone, is the micro terror good for cleans???"....I get some great advice on Justin's forum ("....you've bought an amp which is loud and growly....") & switch the order to a Fender Champion 20 which I think is a great little amp. 


Around this time I decide to supplement Justin's course with a personal guitar teacher (my daughters teacher) every other week.  He eventually (month 5) decides to start me on Accoustic grade 3 (still learning now).


FOUR MONTHS IN
Four months in & I love practicing Sound of Silence (I spend up to 20 minutes a day on it), but with capo at fret 6, as I progress I eventually get to a bar where I run out of frets on the classical guitar.  More great advice from Jusitn's forum sees me buy a steel accoustic, a Faith Venus.  I narrowed it to Venus or Neptune & went Venus because the smaller body seemed better suited to Fingerstyle (which I was sure was my preferred playing style).



SEVEN MONTHS IN
I guess that brings me up to today.  I've suffered with a tendon issue lately due to door posture, it probably lost me 3 weeks of playing.  I'm on Justin's Beginner Blues course.  I try to practice 90 minutes a day, 30 on Justin's course,30 on Accoustic grade 3 and 30 on other stuff I've picked up. 

At the moment what inspires me is the Blues Solo (almost nailed it) in Justin's course & the intro to Sweet Child of Mine (which I am quite obsessed by but limit to 5 minutes a day).

Still practicing Sound of Silence (down to 5 mins a day), one day....
https://soundcloud.com/leon-skeldon/sound-of-silence
« Last Edit: November 01, 2020, 12:14:29 pm by skeldol »

Offline DavidP

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Re: Skeldol's Road Case
« Reply #1 on: November 01, 2020, 01:32:20 pm »
Good vibes for starting the Road Case, Leon.  I do love reading the stories, looking at the pictures, and following progress.

I hear how much progress you have made on SoS ... one I'd like to learn one day, when the moment is right.

Playing a left-handed guitar as a left-handed person, is often discussed here ... consensus (I think) would be that for majority it will be best to play a left-handed guitar.  Did you stick with the what's best for the family approach when you purchased the Yamaha and Faith guitars?

Keep on keeping on and look forward to updates and hearing more of your playing, eventually over in the AVOYP area.

Offline Twin Six

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Re: Skeldol's Road Case
« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2020, 02:08:12 pm »
Good vibes from me too. Your dedication & ambition are paying dividends, judging by the progress you've made with Sound of Silence. It's not an easy one, but what drives us forward is playing songs that are beyond our abilities, and it's so satisfying when we finally get there.

You have a Fender Champ! One of the songs I play is Frank Zappa's Joe's Garage, which has the line, ". . . and a cheesy little amp, with a sign on the front that said Fender Champ . . ."
1986 Alvarez Yairi DY-76 (twelve-string) "The Twin Six"
1989 Alvarez Yairi DY-39 (six-string)
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Offline skeldol

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Re: Skeldol's Road Case
« Reply #3 on: November 02, 2020, 11:10:17 am »
Good vibes for starting the Road Case, Leon.  I do love reading the stories, looking at the pictures, and following progress.
Thanks David, good vibes for taking the time to read & give feedback!

I hear how much progress you have made on SoS ... one I'd like to learn one day, when the moment is right.
Thanks again, I often think I'm getting nowhere on it and it's only when I listen over a long period that I appreciate how much I've progressed.

Playing a left-handed guitar as a left-handed person, is often discussed here ... consensus (I think) would be that for majority it will be best to play a left-handed guitar.  Did you stick with the what's best for the family approach when you purchased the Yamaha and Faith guitars?
Yes I did, no way could I have bought an electric guitar just for myself without a really good go at learning righthanded.  I thought the kids would love it but they just say "too heavy".  For a maybe 3 or 4 months I continued to agonize over whether I had done the right thing learning RH.  A big argument against lefties learning RH seems to be speed of righthand picking.  So when I learn new strumming at high tempo (e.g. Dakota chugging 8s) I turn the guitar round & see if I can do it LH...it is always just as hard!  I have come to the conclusion that to get good at guitar you need to be fairly capable with both hands, in which case does it really matter?

Keep on keeping on and look forward to updates and hearing more of your playing, eventually over in the AVOYP area.
Ah never saw that area before, thanks for pointing it out!

Offline skeldol

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Re: Skeldol's Road Case
« Reply #4 on: November 02, 2020, 11:13:48 am »
Good vibes from me too. Your dedication & ambition are paying dividends, judging by the progress you've made with Sound of Silence. It's not an easy one, but what drives us forward is playing songs that are beyond our abilities, and it's so satisfying when we finally get there.

You have a Fender Champ! One of the songs I play is Frank Zappa's Joe's Garage, which has the line, ". . . and a cheesy little amp, with a sign on the front that said Fender Champ . . ."

Thankyou Twin Six.  Pretty sure they were talking about one of those cheesey Champ 57 valve amps that cost £1k, they would never say such a thing about my wonderful solid state amp!

Offline Twin Six

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Re: Skeldol's Road Case
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2020, 03:56:00 pm »
Thankyou Twin Six.  Pretty sure they were talking about one of those cheesey Champ 57 valve amps that cost £1k, they would never say such a thing about my wonderful solid state amp!

Indeed, and from the horse's mouth, as it were, here's the history of the Fender Champ:

https://www.fender.com/articles/gear/indispensable-undeniable-the-legacy-of-the-champ
1986 Alvarez Yairi DY-76 (twelve-string) "The Twin Six"
1989 Alvarez Yairi DY-39 (six-string)
1993 Hiren Roy & Sons sitar
Fender Squier Bullet Telecaster
Vox Valvetronic VT20X

Offline batwoman

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Re: Skeldol's Road Case
« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2020, 05:16:57 am »
What a fascinating RC Leon. Thanks. Big admiration for the generosity and inclusiveness you extend to your family in buying right handed instruments. I think you make a good point that both hands have skills to learn and jobs to do.

Your attitude is a powerful and wonderful thing and it will see you through the lows as well as the highs.

You've made mighty fine progress with SoS. Vibes to you.
Walcott Custom OM Acoustic , G&L Tribute Fallout Electric, Crafter T035 OM Acoustic, Ashton Bass.

Offline skeldol

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Re: Skeldol's Road Case
« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2021, 03:59:50 pm »
Thankyou Batwoman that is  very kind of you to say!

Offline skeldol

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Re: Skeldol's Road Case
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2021, 04:16:08 pm »
My one year learning guitar anniversary……… I’ve practiced between 1 and 2 hours most days during the last year.  I’m kind of happy with the results, can see I have a lot further to go than I have travelled to become anything like a decent player. 
So this year I’ve done Justin’s Beginner Course along with some of his Intermediate stuff & then I’ve been looking at books on Blues Rhythm, fingerstyle & lead, I do love the Blues on guitar!!  I’m starting to get on with barre chords but still a way to go.

I’ve got some aspirations for the long term:
1.   Steel: Learn this… 


  I already bought the tab and training vids, plan to look at them in a year or two!
2.   Electric: Noodle the cleans from this demo (I know how boring to aspire to an advert!) 



3.   Classical: Cavatina




I’ve been told Cavatina is at least grade 8 so might be on my wishlist for many years to come!  Although I doubt either of the other two are any easier.  Likely never happen objectives.

My training plan vaguely moves me towards these goals with around 30 minutes of fingerstyle/classical a day & about the same on lead (mainly Blues).
Going into year 2 my focus from Justin’s course is Intermediate: I’m currently focussed on his barre chords lessons, minimum movement, etc.  I’ve also added a bit in from his advanced course but an easy bit that is more in-line with Justin’s intermediate stuff.  Keith pointed out that this https://www.justinguitar.com/guitar-lessons/mayfield-hendrix-style-fills-rf-101 lesson would give me some of the skills needed in my Noodling video above, it’s now part of my daily repertoire. Thanks Keith!!!     

The fun bit, purchase since the last post!  I bought my first valve amp, an AC4TV. 

I gotta say whilst I liked it, I preferred my Fender Champion 20 (what can I say, I was brought up in a council estate.) & so sold the AC4TV, then just when I thought I was happy with my Champion 20 I decided to spend a ton of money on a Tonemaster DR, which I REALLY like

 but I have to say I think the Champion still puts in a really good showing.  Also pretty sure this amp makes me "all the gear no idea"so under pressure to get good now....

 Not sure on next gear purchase: electric with neck humbucker pick-up, a better classical or a large steel……

Goals for this year?  I’d like to be able to play some leads from Justin’s Intermediate song recommendations at full BPM.  I’d like to be able to add percussion to my fingerstyle (Sound of Silence part 2 has percussion, if I could do that I would be very very happy).  I also wanna be able to play Chanson Triste on my classical guitar, hopefully a shorter term goal and one I am learning now.
My milestone piece of music to compare myself to in 6 months’ time is my progress on Hideaway .  I’m only learning section A at the moment and only at 60BPM but I remember looking at this 6 months ago & it was just a jumble of notes on a page that I thought I would never be able to do & now it is starting to sound like the real deal (in slow mo….)

https://soundcloud.com/leon-skeldon/hideaway-60bpm-1-year-learning-guitar/comment-1332172837


Offline adi_mrok

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Re: Skeldol's Road Case
« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2021, 04:54:13 pm »
Congratulations on your 1 year anniversary! Seems like evrything is going in the right direction and you are enjoying yourself during the journey which all of this is about! I think using roadcase as a way to compare your improvement while learning a particular song is a great thing to do. I will definitely have a look here next time you posting a recording to see your progress :) all the best.

Keep on rockin' my friends


Offline DavidP

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Re: Skeldol's Road Case
« Reply #10 on: April 04, 2021, 05:31:53 am »
What a fabulous update, Skeldol. Again, congrats on the anniversary. Your performance of Harvest over in AVOYP really does demonstrate for all the power of deliberate practice. You have a disciplined approach and have been dedicated, and so harvest the results (terrible play on words but couldn't help myself).

Good luck on figuring out how to satisfy your GAS urge.

Look forward to more updates over in AVOYP as you progress.

Offline skeldol

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Re: Skeldol's Road Case
« Reply #11 on: April 04, 2021, 01:45:09 pm »
Congratulations on your 1 year anniversary! Seems like evrything is going in the right direction and you are enjoying yourself during the journey which all of this is about! I think using roadcase as a way to compare your improvement while learning a particular song is a great thing to do. I will definitely have a look here next time you posting a recording to see your progress :) all the best.

Keep on rockin' my friends

Thanks, I'm under pressure now to deliver!


What a fabulous update, Skeldol. Again, congrats on the anniversary. Your performance of Harvest over in AVOYP really does demonstrate for all the power of deliberate practice. You have a disciplined approach and have been dedicated, and so harvest the results (terrible play on words but couldn't help myself).

Good luck on figuring out how to satisfy your GAS urge.

Look forward to more updates over in AVOYP as you progress.

Thankyou David!

 

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