If you could begin again

Discussion in 'Tab, Tips, Theory and Technique' started by Milspec, Oct 12, 2019.

  1. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's

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    I find myself really wishing I had started out learning to play finger style. It seems like all of my favorite players use a travis pick or modified finger pick style which I have yet to develop...although trying. It would have made so much difference in my enjoyment and develpment if I had.

    It just made me curious as to what you players wish you would have done differently when you started your guitar education? What skill, style, etc. do you wish you would have develped at the start?
     
  2. CK Dexter Haven

    CK Dexter Haven Friend of Leo's

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    Equipment was so bad it was chore to play anything, given modern low cost equipment, I would have gotten on barre chords earlier, I still tend to work around first position, even when playing jazz.
     
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  3. Dismalhead

    Dismalhead Poster Extraordinaire

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    Singing, and singing and playing at the same time. Didn't start singing until about 7 years ago. Now I am like Stevie Ray or Jimi with intertwining the two, but I wish I'd done it when I was young and you know, in bands.
     
  4. LOSTVENTURE

    LOSTVENTURE Tele-Afflicted

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    I got started in 1958, so a lot has changed. But since you need an extended knowledge of chord shaping in order to approach finger style, I'm glad that I stumbled onto the basics the way I did.
    I was probably lucky that the Ventures were around when I got started. I learned a lot from them. And when Jerry McGee joined the group, with his hybrid finger picking style, I felt ready to tackle that as well.
    So, I guess I would not change the course of events that brought me to where I am today.
    But like someone mentiond, in the 50's and 60's, cheap guitars were nothing more than cheap guitars.
    You really got what you paid for. Almost anyway.
     
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  5. Fiesta Red

    Fiesta Red Friend of Leo's

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    I would have ignored the advice of some well-meaning guys and picked up a bunch of those “crappy” 70’s Fenders that I liked but was talked out of buying. Likewise for the low-wattage Fender tube amps that were “inadequate” in the late 80’s/early 90’s.

    playing-wise, I would have taken lessons earlier and learned a few extra scales along the way...around here, it was hard to find a teacher who wasn’t a shredding jack wagon who was “above” us poor idiots that just wanted to play blues and rock and outlaw country.
     
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  6. rangercaster

    rangercaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    No use in regretting the past ...it's gone ... But you can start something new anytime you wish ...
     
  7. Matt G

    Matt G Tele-Afflicted

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    I wish I'd learned music properly, back in high school.
     
  8. RoyalBaby

    RoyalBaby Tele-Afflicted

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    I've had a very uneven journey to where I am now, which is not far along really...:(

    Anyway, I think I'd tell my younger self transcribe, transcribe, transcribe. In retrospect it's a fairly obvious thing, how many guitar magazine interviews did I read where people described their learning journey as largely that. Yet I held fast to the belief that someone else could do the hard work and one day they'd show me how it all worked.
     
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  9. Fretting out

    Fretting out Tele-Afflicted

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    I wish I would have worked on using all five fingers especially my little finger, I’ve been trying to use it more lately but have pretty much played with 3 fingers for the last 13 years except for the Hendrix chord

    I’m not sure if I’ll ever get the dexterity I have in the others/ plus I have an alien hand with two index fingers for my first and third so that can’t help
     
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  10. beagle

    beagle Friend of Leo's

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    Take piano lessons.
     
  11. Rob77

    Rob77 Tele-Meister

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    Alot of really skilled players I know started off classical as a basis and develop further after that. I had one "group" lesson at 13 and got put off straight away when the teacher threatened to "hurt" one student for moving his fretting hand. Told my parents and at that age they say oh you misunderstood what he said... bla bla.... that image has stuck with me forever.
    Anyway, regardless of the teacher, its something I wish I learnt young. Tried again as a mature adult and found too hard to retrain my 20+ years of bad habits.
     
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  12. Digital Larry

    Digital Larry Tele-Afflicted

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    I really like the hybrid style also, e.g. Richard Thompson/Simon Nicol. I never learned "Freight Train" but I did manage to write an original (is it possible) fingerstyle tune or two which I can play pretty well. I've probably tried hybrid but can't recall ever doing anything but giving up on it.

    I always loved fingerstyle stuff (Jorma Kaukonen, John Renbourn, Michael Hedges, Alex DeGrassi, Pierre Bensusan, Stephan Grossman, David Bromberg) but was more drawn to the fireworks of fast flatpicking. Turns out I can't do that too great either, not for lack of practice.

    So I'd say I'm in the same spot as the OP, wish I'd tried fingerstyle/hybrid more. OTOH I did teach myself to play guitar, bass, and mandolin more or less simultaneously, so it wasn't a complete waste of time.
     
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  13. Matthias

    Matthias Friend of Leo's

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    Been in more bands or at least spent more time playing with others.
     
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  14. ElJay370

    ElJay370 Tele-Holic

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    I'd make more of an effort to grasp and dig into all of the music theory that various teachers tried to drill into my head instead of shrugging it all off because I didn't have the patience.

    That, and learn how to play slide. I've made numerous attempts over the years and just haven't been able to get it.
     
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  15. GibbyTwin

    GibbyTwin Tele-Meister

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    I thought hard about this and have to say I probably wouldn't want to change a thing about the way I learned. I've always hated school (any kind) so the thoughts of music lessons and formal learning does not appeal to me, even today. I learned by watching others and also by just dumb luck trying to do something and stumbling onto something else, sometimes better than what I was originally trying to do, sometimes not. Also, I've always changed things up when I got bored, going from electric to acoustic to bass to mando to dulcimer to 5 string banjo (still being frustrated by that one) and back again as my interests ebb and flow. Am I proficient on all instruments I pick up? Heck no, but I can get by and have fun.
    Having fun was my motivation I guess, and if I had done anything differently I might not still be playing today, after all these years.
    Do I wish I could do things differently or better? Yes. I've never been able to develop any appreciable speed, no matter how much I try. But I learned other things to compensate.
    :)
     
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  16. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's

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    Well, put and I have been doing a lot of that compensation myself over the years. Try something, get frustrated, and find another way around it. It just seems that no matter what I achieve I keep seeing someone with a great fingerstyle and feeling very envious. I saw Knopfler just demonstrating how he developed his style while holding a C chord. He sounded better just holding a single chord than just about any cool lick that I knew. So much more depth and dynamics to finger style yet I just can't seem to develop the ability this late in the game.
     
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  17. The Angry Possum

    The Angry Possum Tele-Meister

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    I wish I would of played the chords correctly from the beginning. As I was only using major bar chords for everything, I never played a bar minor chord. Always power chords in major. Didnt know what or how to play a minor chord in a bar position. I guess I was just lazy... So everything was a major chord. Ughhhh. And that dreaded F Chord. Oh my....
     
  18. GibbyTwin

    GibbyTwin Tele-Meister

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    I think the key here is what I put in boldface. It's his style. Perhaps you just need to come up with a way to do it that is comfortable and works for you. Some pickers do fingerstyle with two fingers, some with three, some with four. Experiment and find what works for you and make it your style. :)

    Edit to add: Each time I got into another 'phase' and started on another instrument (ie. dulcimer) I would play nothing but for a period of time. Eventually muscle memory took over and my playing would feel and sound more fluid and natural. Some times it just takes more time.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2019
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  19. theprofessor

    theprofessor Friend of Leo's

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    If I had to do it all over again, I'd dedicate myself right from the very beginning to mastering the CAGED system the way that Guthrie Trapp teaches it. And scales and so forth the way he teaches it. And everything the way he teaches it.
     
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  20. WingedWords

    WingedWords Tele-Holic

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    It'd be the cello.
     
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