New guy, new player

Discussion in 'Welcome Wagon' started by Vicsponjr, Feb 17, 2019.

  1. Vicsponjr

    Vicsponjr TDPRI Member

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    Hello
    New here on the forum. I'm 55 and have teaching myself how to play for a couple of months now and have my first lesson scheduled in a couple of days. I'm 55 and having a hard time getting the fingers on my left hand to cooperate. My wife bought me a Pyle Stratocaster starter kit for Christmas years ago but I gave up after a few days. Took a couple lessons about a year ago and gave up again. When I started again a few months ago I figured it would be easier if I had a nice guitar. A friend of mine was thinning the herd and posted his '72 Custom Reissue for sale and I fell in love. Being a huge fan of Keith Richards, Bruce Springsteen, and that Telecaster sound it seemed like a no brainer. I know it takes practice, lots of practice, I pick her up every day and I'm not giving up this time, but I'm wondering if it would be any easier with a modern C neck and 12" radius vs the 7.5 radius on my '72. Thanks in advance to everyone who shares their knowledge!
     
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  2. unixfish

    unixfish Poster Extraordinaire

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    Welcome!

    Radius and neck profile. Well, this is one of those "it depends on what feels best to you" questions. The 7.25 is better for basic chords, the 12 for solo working. Many players use one of the other for both, so that is only a rule of thumb.

    If you like the guitar, play it. After a few months / years, you may develop a better preference. As a beginner, that 72 is a nice guitar - a good setup will be more important than neck profiles and fretboard radius (radii?).

    I looked at your location - since you are my age - and thought "Hmmm, if you are in the Pittsburgh area..." OK, Philly, a bit far from me.
     
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  3. ndcaster

    ndcaster Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    welcome Vic
     
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  4. Ydwen Jones

    Ydwen Jones Tele-Meister

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    Welcome to TDPRI! Taking some lessons is always a good idea, imo. Keep practicing, good luck and enjoy your new guitar!
     
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  5. Vicsponjr

    Vicsponjr TDPRI Member

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    Thank you. I took my strat copy to a luthier to have it set up and now the strings are buzzing a little, driving me nuts.I gave it a little turn on the truss rod and it seems better. My tele felt great until I decided to take the 6th and 1st strings off and tune to open G. I broke to A strings trying to tune it to G so I put on a thinner string. While I was doing so I noticed some buzzing that was never there and upon inspection noticed that the barrels moved (it has a 3 brass barrel bridge). I'm ready to restring to normal tuning before I mess anything else up and go see the tech again.
     
  6. Greggorios

    Greggorios Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    Hi and welcome. You might be interested in the Tabs, Tips, Theory and Technique here. Some helpful info.
     
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  7. Vicsponjr

    Vicsponjr TDPRI Member

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    Yes I'm going to check that out, thank you. I'm also going to check the classifieds for some new fingers!
     
  8. AlbertaGriff

    AlbertaGriff Tele-Afflicted

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    Hi there, and welcome.

    I don't think at this point you should worry too much about neck shape and radius. Learning guitar isn't easy, but the learning curve is steep. Practice chords, learning simple songs, and maybe some major scales, and it will fall in to place. Your left hand may be uncomfortable at times, but it needs to learn too (muscle memory). This is just my opinion, but the benefit at this stage of a flatter radius would be next to nil.
     
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  9. Bigpernz

    Bigpernz Tele-Meister

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    Welcome! Your fingers will work you just have to stick with it and get over that beginning hump where it feels like it'll never happen. Great guitar for your 1st tele I hope those lessons are inspiring and hang in there!
     
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  10. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    Howdy!
     
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  11. Sparky2

    Sparky2 Friend of Leo's

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    I agree 100%.

    Here's a bit I wrote years ago, Vic.
    It's aimed at beginner guitar players, albeit mostly the younger ones.

    But you may enjoy bits and pieces of it.
    :)

    https://www.axecentral.com/advice-for-the-new-guitar-player-1000997.html
     
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  12. dkmw

    dkmw Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Welcome, you've come to the right place. There are many helpful people here. Plus we'll enable your GAS.:)

    I'm learning at an older age as well - and a Stones fan. The open g stuff is a great way to get complete songs under your belt quickly, which gives you a sense of accomplishment and keeps your enthusiasm up.

    Start Me Up, Happy, and Jumping Jack Flash are good places to start (latter two are capo 4). And You Can't Always.... is easy as pie at capo 5.

    I'm a little confused about breaking strings while tuning, though. Keef's five string set-up has no low E string. The fifth string (A in standard) is tuned down a step to G. The fourth, third, and second stay on D-G-B, just like standard tuning. The high e is tuned down a step to D.

    (edited to correct my mistake, YCAGWYW is capo 5, not 4)
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2019
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  13. SecretSquirrel

    SecretSquirrel Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    Welcome, and keep at it! You'll find inspiration here. :)
     
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  14. SuprHtr

    SuprHtr Tele-Meister

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    I’m a total beginner and I’m measuring my progress by finding that scales and simple chord progressions are getting easier each time I pick up the guitar. It’s all at 1/4 speed and it’s seldom perfect, but it is getting slowly better. As long as this makes me happy, I’m certain to continue.
     
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  15. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's

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    The radius on that reissue tele shouldn't matter (should actually help you starting out), but the vintage frets might make things a little difficult....expect buzzing especially if new to it. The forgiving medium-jumbos help a lot of us avoid string buzz. As for breaking strings while tuning, check to make sure that you have the correct gauge string and that you are not trying to tune an octave higher by mistake. That is a common mistake starting out.

    There are a million suggestions and tips out there so I don't want to bog this down with too much of that, but I will give you the biggest 2 that blew my mind and wished that I had known it from the start.

    1. Most people learn by buying a chord poster and studying the different chord shapes (I did). It works out well EXCEPT it shows you the finger (numerically) and what string / fret to place them. Where it goes wrong is that most beginners will look at it and place their fingers in numerical order (1-2-3-4). That does 2 things that start you off on the wrong road. One, it gets you thinking of moving one finger at a time instead of placing your fingers onto the board at the same time and two, it forces you to form your shape from the high E up to the low E instead of forming the chord from the lowest string downward. IF you form your shape from the lowest string side first, your changes will be much easier and faster since gravity helps and you and you are not reaching for the next chord. (Hope that all made sense).

    2. As mentioned, the posters get you thinking one finger at a time which will create very slow changes to other chords. Instead of thinking chord shapes, think chord grips where you grip the neck with the appropriate fingers at the same time. When learning the chord, place you fingers where they need to go and do pulses of firm squeezes (20) and let go of the neck. Then grip that chord again...sqeeze, release. Just keep repeating that process until you can form that chord by landing all fingers at the same time. You will actually develop a little bit of a bruise on your fingers allowing you find the right spot quickly. In the Marines, we would do the same thing in drill by forming a bruise where you need to place something so that you can use a little pain to guide you to the correct spot.

    Beyond that, from one old guy (50) who started about 6 years ago, welcome to the forum and just be persistent....it will come to you. We are not likely to become great players since we are starting out so late, but you will be amazed what you can accomplish in 5-10 years.
     
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  16. FrankJames

    FrankJames Poster Extraordinaire

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    Welcome to the forum !!
     
  17. Bergy

    Bergy Tele-Meister

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    I too wouldn’t be too concerned with radius and neck profile at this point. If anything, I see a lot of guys starting out who could use a neck with a wider nut cuz they got big ol fingers that have a hard time stacking to play certain chords.

    As for getting the fingers moving, sometimes I’ll have students play a “Tornado Fingers” exercise. Like this:

    1st String ——0—1—2—3—2—1—0——

    Use whatever fret number you are on, as your left hand finger number. First fret, first finger and so on...

    If you get bored with that you can work on strumming a single chord in isolation, like say an E chord with a boom chuck strum. Lotsa videos out there on boom chucking. That’ll get ya sounding like “Folsom Prison Blues” pretty quickly.

    Might not hurt to start learning the first mode of the A- pentatonic scale. Scales can be good warm ups.

    Sometimes playing through note reading etudes gives your fingers a chance to slow down and acclimate to moving across the fretboard in a very regimented way. On the other hand, sometimes students don’t really understand how fast someone has to move their fingers to play music. Playing the bass line to something like Peter Gun, Hit the Road Jack or Green Onions gives ya a chance to play something that can be sped up to a musical tempo fairly easily. It’ll also check your ability to reach up to that 6th string.

    I tend to teach people with full sized hands chords in this order:

    1st C,A,G,E,D
    2nd A-,D-,E-
    3rd B7 and F

    Welcome to the forum. Hope you enjoy playing guitar!
     
  18. Vicsponjr

    Vicsponjr TDPRI Member

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  19. Vicsponjr

    Vicsponjr TDPRI Member

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    good stuff guys. Thank you. I like that boom chuck. that first lick to Folsom Prison Blues was the first recognizable thing I played. I couldn't figure out the rest of the song so that's as far as I got. I do that a couple times when ever I get frustrated. Boom chuck may get me the rest of the way through the song, never heard that before. Thanks!
     
  20. JazzboxBlues

    JazzboxBlues Tele-Afflicted

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    52 here and had been buying, selling and collecting before I got serious about playing in my 50s. It’s hard and takes dedication. If the 72 is comfortable and you like it, play it. Your time will be better spent practicing and learning over what guitar would be better. Take it from me. Good luck and keep at it.
     
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