I went through the fist 15 minutes of the MODULE 1 PRACTICAL Part 1 this afternoon with the guitar pugged into the amp and played along until it was too fast for me to keep up with the left hand, I could keep going on open strings beyond the 15 minutes but it doesn't sound very nice! After repeating the first 15 minutes 3 times I set up the camera and tried videoing the exercise! some 2 hour later the above is the best there is to offer
I am having major problems with the muting of the high E and B string as the volume control gets in the way, I'm sure there is a simple way around this but I haven't worked it out yet. On the video it doesn't look like I am picking correctly even though I am using the scalpel technique.
When it comes to the left hand, the fastest I can play the A minor is about 100 beats per minute, I've been practising the ladder and spider techniques the former with more success than the latter, although I have seen improvement in the control of my ring finger (which wouldn't do anything a month ago). Part of the problem may be due to the various injuries my hand has suffered over the past 50 odd years!
I think I will have to produce more for my video for Pebber at the end of the month but I seem to loose all coordination once I hit the record button, does anyone have any tips on how to record oneself as if it was just a normal practice?
Having watched it through again I thought I edited the end out, my apologies! I also note that even with a metronome, I still have a timing issue
Great Job Paul!! Very good youmade a video from your self. Dont get the nerves when recording yourself, maybe these things will chill you down:
1) You can always hit a second time the record button you dont use expensive recording tape but a HD
2) Most of us here suck, yes maybe one a little more as the other but we all trying to learn guitar, and no one will make a fool of you.
I hear that your tones are not aways clean it looks like they are half demped sometimes. I dont know if this comes because you demp with your right hand or you dont place your fingers correct on the fretboard.
Maybe it would be a good idea to practice a lot on the spiders this will learn your fingers to stay more close to the fretboard (I had the same thing as you a pulled my fingers away when not using them, It getting better now with me but im not there yet).
Than i thik forget this min pent scale for a moment and do the ladders as pebber tells. Use finger 1-4 over all 6 strings than 1-3 on all 6 strings, 1-2 etc. Do them in all permutations and do them a lot and you gonna see someprogress soon.
You have a pro it look like that you place your thumb nice at where it should be
Don't get too down on yourself. You did very well. Your left hand placement looks quite good, and I can see that your exercises are helping your finger placement and control.
Regarding the right hand placement, you could shift your hand slightly up the neck to clear the control knobs. This will also move the pick slightly further away from your bridge pickup.
I also have big problems with the 1st string unless I alter my hand significantly. There are two problems: being able to cleanly articulate notes on the 1st string and also being able to mute the other five strings. Later today I'll be making videos of right and left hand exercises and if I remember to I'll show what I mean and what I do to alter my hand. It makes a huge difference in the tone quality when I get it right, and I've been focusing on it a bit. When I don't my sound from the first string is absolute crap.
Okay here is about 11½ minutes of ladder exercises mistake and all, at 80 beats per minute:
I know ring and little finger need work, that my little finger sticks out from time to time, I do try and keep it curled in when not in use plus lots more.
It's quite boring watching it all through, so I apologise in advance if you didn't skip parts!
Yes the spider 1324 is very hard, it takes all my concentration to get the ring finger to move without lifting the second! I also have greater difficulty moving from bottom E string to top E direction, I cant lift my ring finger high enough and move it towards my hand. That said I couldn't do it at all 2 months ago, so there is progress, even if a snail could move quicker!
As for the guitar, it belongs to my son, he had it for Christmas. I saw it on ebay being sold a few miles away, collection only and cost £30 plus £5 petrol. Came with a mini portable amp which will run on a 9V battery on on mains with a 9V transformer plug, so all in all a very good deal.
The only problem with it is a fret buzz on the D string 8th fret, increasing the string hight didn't make any difference. It is not too much of an issue, particularly for my son, as he is learning in a different way at school. So will wait until I finish my guitar, I have all the parts all I have to do is work out the wiring so that I can get any pick up combination I want.
You're not the worst student on here lol. I'm sure there's much worse than you or me lurking on here haha :)
Keep going with the spider exercises! I find them really difficult as well. We can encourage each other: two snails are better than one.
Thats a pretty good deal for a guitar and mini amp combo. Fret buzz for me is normally due to my crap technique but I think others on the forums will have better advice about hardware than me.
Keep practicing mate!
I agree. The only person who is the worst student is one who puts in no study time. Anyone who is putting in the effort is a better student than that other guy. Practice will promote progress.
Regarding the spiders, I know what you mean, Paul. They are tough in the 1324 variant. I do them both directions, and I do them two ways also. I start with 13 and then 24 and do it several times in each direction. Then I swtich and start with 24 and then 13 and do it several times in each direction. I find that the more tired or distracted I get the more difficult that exercise is. Sometimes it's quite easy and at other times I feel like I'm trying to lift a cruise ship with the Force.
I find I can do them much easier if I don't skip a string first few times. You know how normally you go:
I find for the first cycle it's much easier to go:
Same as trills, I start on the 1st fret and go from Top E to Bottom E right up to at least 14 or 15th fret and back down a couple of times. I think trills and spider, along with the permutations and timing 1-9 drills will make us MUCH better guitarists. Its just a matter of being patient, because I want to go off and learn all these covers and write some music. For now its hour after hour of exercises and not much real music on the end of my bed watching documentaries on YouTube on my laptop haha. Anyone recommend anything interesting on Youtube to watch while I practice?
13-24 spider is the most difficult one i think that too. It took me some weeks before i could do them at a modest speed.
Regarding the string buzz if raising th estring doesnt help maybe tightening the trussrod a tiny bit will help? Thitening this one will curve the fretboard a bit and could cancel this noise i beleive.
Hey Paul - nice work, and congrats on posting a vid!
You asked about losing coordination when recording yourself. I suffer from the same problem. Just the other day I was playing, and before I knew it, I was thinking about some personal issue rather than what I was doing, and sure enough my playing fell apart in just the way it does when recording myself. The point I'm trying to make, I guess, is that once the camera is going we immediately become self-conscious and no longer focus on what we're supposed to be doing, which is playing guitar! I don't really have a solid answer for this, other than perhaps record for quite some time until you forget about the camera and relax into what it is you're doing, then edit away the first ten minutes (or whatever it might be) of your recording.
I watched your first video a couple of times, and I'd politely suggest you don't attempt yet to double up the notes as you do in the second half of the video. It seems to me your timing and note clarity aren't quite there at the initial speed. We all want to get faster as fast as possible, but I think it will serve you well to improve these aspects before increasing the speed. The timing I'm sure will come with a little more practice: it seems like it's good for much of the time, then goes when you come to a more difficult part and have to focus too much on the mechanics. Just slow it down until it's natural.
As for the note clarity, I read a very interesting piece a while ago now. The suggestion was to fret a note with the left hand and pick it, being sure the note was clear. Keep picking, but slowly release the pressure of the fretting finger. At some point the note will go dead. The amount of pressure you need with the left hand is just a little bit more than this amount.
Anyway, I'm far from an expert - I guess I'd consider myself intermediate - and you should certainly listen to the likes of Pebber, Ursin and co over what I have to say. Nevertheless, I hope this is of some use and encouragement. Best of luck!
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