Hello all !
It's been a year since I subscribed to Guitar Tricks and I wanted to do a quick post about where I'm at today.
Let me restate my aims when I joined : I wanted to be able to play songs on the guitar and sing along. And I wanted to learn country music because I fell in love with Bluegrass a while ago. I also love indie rock so playing some would also be very satisfying.
One year on, it is a work in progress, but I did manage already to play "Christmas songs made easy" by Lisa this Christmas, and we had great fun singing along to my very messy playing. Messy but fun ! And I received my first Bluegrass book for Christmas (Rural Roots of Bluegrass from Wayne Erbsen). I transposed "All the Good Times" to D and learned to play it and sing it. So I have my first bluegrass song going, although still very imperfectly !
Coursewise, I play every day, and I am still in GF2 because I take a lot of time working on the songs. I don't feel the need to rush it, and I am aware of the fact that the course is very well constructed, every lesson serving a purpose in making us progress. For instance, the last song before the introduction of the barre chords features an F chord. And I am convinced that it is not there by mistake : it primed my fingers for the exercises to come with the barre chords. I feel that my fingers are getting stronger, and I am always amazed at the fact that a chord that just seems impossible to master at first, becomes manageable after a few evenings working at it. I am currently working on Day into Night and Follow the Arrows. I enjoy printing the music sheets and refreshing my music theory by trying to decipher them. I plan on finishing GF2 in the weeks to come, and move on to Country and Acoustic. And also a few songs, of course !
Gearwise, I started by buying a steel string acoustic guitar, and I also bought a cheap electric because I'd read that playing the electric was easier and less painful on the fingers, and also easier for the barre chords. One year on, I almost never use the electric because it is heavier and it takes more time to set up : I have to connect it to the amp, switch the amp on etc, whereas I can just grab my acoustic and play. I will eventually play with the electric because i want to do some serious rock music, but at this stage I like the acoustic better. Also, I learned that at the local music school, you have to first take lessons in acoustic guitar for 2 years before moving on to the electric. I figure it must make sense, so I decided to do the same. And I love my acoustic anyway !
To conclude, I am still very much a beginner, but I feel that I am building a good foundation, taking the time needed, and I aim to be reasonably good by the time I hit 60. Also, I have a new friend who is a sound engineer and she throws big parties every 5 years with live music by friends and the bands she works with - next time will be in 3 years, and I think I will try to have something ready for then.
All in all, thank you Guitar Tricks, I was very happy to renew my subscription.
The only real failure is the failure to try.