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  #1  
Old 11-21-2014, 07:00 AM
ironhorse777 ironhorse777 is offline
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I just recently took a trial lesson just to perfect my bends. I go to the guitar lesson and that guy shows up with a freaking acoustic guitar despite telling them that I own an electric guitar and want lessons in blues and rock. After showing up with an acoustic guitar he asks me to plug in my guitar and barely turns up the volume above 1, I mean I bet my fart would have sound louder than that. He keeps on coming up with excuses saying he cannot bend on acoustic and that I have to keep on looking at the dots on fretboard and keep them as reference to bend strings. I mean how does he expect me to keep doing that all the time? I am a musician should I not train my ear to listen if the bends are accurate or not instead of just looking at the fretboard all the time? Lastly, he adds I should start listening to Eric Clapton the master of guitar and he lost me there!
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Old 11-21-2014, 07:14 AM
PointBlank PointBlank is offline
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Wow......feel better now?
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Old 11-21-2014, 07:18 AM
mc1 mc1 is offline
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so, will you be going back for a paid lesson?
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Old 11-21-2014, 07:30 AM
ironhorse777 ironhorse777 is offline
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^No, I have finally realized no one can be a better critic of my playing than myself. I have also observed that when I take my own time to learn something all by myself I find that I am enjoying playing more.
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Old 11-21-2014, 07:45 AM
mc1 mc1 is offline
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Originally Posted by ironhorse777 View Post
^No, I have finally realized no one can be a better critic of my playing than myself. I have also observed that when I take my own time to learn something all by myself I find that I am enjoying playing more.
a tape recorder can also help critique oneself. and there are lots of other materials (youtube, dvds, books) available to assist if you go it on your own.

but don't give up entirely on terachers either. sometimes they can save a lot of pain and aggravation, and shorten the learning cycle.

i don't get the look at the dots when bending bit either. who knows?

best of luck.
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Old 11-21-2014, 01:20 PM
JonPR JonPR is offline
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Well, I'm with the teacher on one point: for practice, an electric guitar needs only needs to be loud enough to hear it. No louder than an acoustic anyway. I once had lessons - in a group of 4 students - with the great jazz player John Etheridge; he didn't allow us (all electric players) to use amps at all! The lessons worked fine.

As for the rest of it - I think I'm with the student (even if he's reporting through a red mist....).
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Old 11-21-2014, 04:35 PM
Laird_Williams Laird_Williams is offline
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1) Agree with teacher about electric. You don't need the amp up in order to learn to bend. And - BTW - most of your practice should be on clean settings too - no high gain sounds, which can take really sloppy playing and "gloss it over".

2) If the guy can't bend on acoustic then that is a sign of a big problem. Bending on acoustic is difficult, but it is certainly doable for anyone who has been playing for a bit.

3) A agree with you as regards using your ear for bends. I've never heard of using fretboard dots for guiding bends. String gauge, bridge type, scale length, and all kinds of other variables would cause variations in how far you need to bend the string to hit a pitch. That said, your ear SHOULD have a goal or reference pitch. So doing a 1/2-step bend until it just sounds "right" to you while practicing alone may not be enough. Fret and play the note 1/2 step higher then bend to it so you can compare. Same with whole-step bends, and 1-and-a-half-step bends. Notes between notes come later, after you KNOW you can hit the pitch you hear.

So, as far as I can tell, the lesson was a success. It was a trial lesson. The purpose of a trial lesson is primarily to discover whether you and the teacher are on the same page and you want to continue with lessons. You now know that you do not want to continued. Objective accomplished.

So exactly what makes this guy a scum?
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Old 11-21-2014, 06:15 PM
ironhorse777 ironhorse777 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JonPR View Post
Well, I'm with the teacher on one point: for practice, an electric guitar needs only needs to be loud enough to hear it. No louder than an acoustic anyway. I once had lessons - in a group of 4 students - with the great jazz player John Etheridge; he didn't allow us (all electric players) to use amps at all! The lessons worked fine.

As for the rest of it - I think I'm with the student (even if he's reporting through a red mist....).
I could hardly hear my bends at all and moreover I never complained that I wanted the amp turned up at ear piercing levels. Just enough to so that I could hear what I was doing. I could not even hear how far I was bending at all.

Last edited by ironhorse777; 11-21-2014 at 06:23 PM.
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Old 11-21-2014, 06:22 PM
ironhorse777 ironhorse777 is offline
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Originally Posted by Laird_Williams View Post
1) Agree with teacher about electric. You don't need the amp up in order to learn to bend. And - BTW - most of your practice should be on clean settings too - no high gain sounds, which can take really sloppy playing and "gloss it over".

2) If the guy can't bend on acoustic then that is a sign of a big problem. Bending on acoustic is difficult, but it is certainly doable for anyone who has been playing for a bit.

3) A agree with you as regards using your ear for bends. I've never heard of using fretboard dots for guiding bends. String gauge, bridge type, scale length, and all kinds of other variables would cause variations in how far you need to bend the string to hit a pitch. That said, your ear SHOULD have a goal or reference pitch. So doing a 1/2-step bend until it just sounds "right" to you while practicing alone may not be enough. Fret and play the note 1/2 step higher then bend to it so you can compare. Same with whole-step bends, and 1-and-a-half-step bends. Notes between notes come later, after you KNOW you can hit the pitch you hear.

So, as far as I can tell, the lesson was a success. It was a trial lesson. The purpose of a trial lesson is primarily to discover whether you and the teacher are on the same page and you want to continue with lessons. You now know that you do not want to continued. Objective accomplished.

So exactly what makes this guy a scum?
Sorry to sound like a noob but isn't distortion what makes playing sloppy obvious? moreover I do no prefer to play clean because that not what I like. I grew up listening to that type of music in which no guitarist plays wih clean setting.

I paid 25$ for a half hour lesson with this guy and yes though this was a trail lesson and him being a professional shouldn't he have brought an electric guitar knowing I wanted lessons in electric guitar?
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Old 11-21-2014, 06:48 PM
Captain Jim Captain Jim is offline
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No, distortion covers a lot a poor technique.

I'd suggest you check out a Guitar Center on a Saturday afternoon... you should be able to check out all kinds of technique, including more bends than most normal folks can stand.

Interesting that you're asking advice on this on an acoustic forum.
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Old 11-21-2014, 10:45 PM
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Originally Posted by mc1 View Post
a tape recorder can also help critique oneself..
Not sure if these youngsters know what that is
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Old 11-22-2014, 04:55 AM
JonPR JonPR is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ironhorse777 View Post
I could hardly hear my bends at all and moreover I never complained that I wanted the amp turned up at ear piercing levels. Just enough to so that I could hear what I was doing. I could not even hear how far I was bending at all.
I can hear bends playing on a solid electric with no amp at all. Not easily, maybe - - but an amp on 1 should be plenty. Were you as loud as his acoustic? That's more than enough.
You might just have to listen more carefully . (Listening more carefully is a good skill anyway)
I do agree about the dots thing, that seems crazy.
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Old 11-22-2014, 05:09 AM
JonPR JonPR is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ironhorse777 View Post
Sorry to sound like a noob but isn't distortion what makes playing sloppy obvious?
In one sense, yes. The compression involved makes any fumbled notes or unintentional noises louder than they'd normally be. You can hear finger movements on the strings.
At the same time, the compression levels out your dynamics, and enhances sustain, meaning you're not learning to control your articulation so well.
Overall, distortion tends to make you sound better than you are.
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Originally Posted by ironhorse777 View Post
moreover I do no prefer to play clean because that not what I like. I grew up listening to that type of music in which no guitarist plays wih clean setting.
That's a fair point, IMO. If you never want or need to play without distortion, then you should practice with distortion - learning how to use amp and FX as part of the instrument.
There are a lot of subtleties involved in distortion, a lot of varieties of timbre, and it's worth spending time getting to understand them. It's an essential part of the craft of rock guitar.
And that goes for volume too, although that's rather harder to work with - its effects depend so much on the space you're playing in; you end up "playing the room" - which is great, until you get into a different room...

You are missing out on a lot of stuff if you never play clean or at low volumes. But that's only like saying you're missing out if you never play nylon-string guitar... So what? you might well be tempted to say...
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Originally Posted by ironhorse777 View Post
I paid 25$ for a half hour lesson with this guy and yes though this was a trail lesson and him being a professional shouldn't he have brought an electric guitar knowing I wanted lessons in electric guitar?
Personally, I'd say yes, provided you really made that clear beforehand. If you talked mainly about wanting to practice bends, or other technical stuff, that might be different. However, if he found bending difficult himself on his acoustic, that's not a great sign...

BTW, while I'm not especially a fan of Clapton (I'm more a fan of his influences), he is a true master of electric guitar, and was one of the first to explore the potential of distortion. Along with Pete Townshend and Jimmy Page, his early 60s experiments with overdrive led Jim Marshall to improve his amp designs, leading to the classic heavy rock sound of the late 60s/early 70s. That's what you (in fact all of us) owe Eric!
He's an extremely tasteful player you can learn a lot from (too tasteful for me, as it happens, but there you go...). Go for his work with Mayall and Cream, rather than his more, er, relaxed later styles.
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Last edited by JonPR; 11-22-2014 at 05:26 AM.
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Old 11-22-2014, 05:54 AM
janmulder janmulder is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ironhorse777 View Post
I paid 25$ for a half hour lesson with this guy and yes though this was a trail lesson and him being a professional shouldn't he have brought an electric guitar knowing I wanted lessons in electric guitar?
It's a two way transaction ... at any point before or during the lesson you can turn around and say you are not happy with something.

You should've mentioned at the beginning that you were not happy that he didn't have an electric with him ... but you were willing to give it a try. Then when he says he can't bend an acoustic (which is a low cop out for a teacher purporting to teach blues) you can reiterate that you are not happy ... and I think if it was clearly not going as planned just terminate the lesson 10-15 mins in.

But if you go right the way to the end of the lesson without complaint then you owe him 25$. Otherwise, it's a bit like going to a restaurant and eating the whole meal before saying anything. Complaining about it after you have finished the plate is not the right thing to do (unless of course you find that worm on the last bite )
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Old 11-22-2014, 06:59 AM
mc1 mc1 is offline
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Not sure if these youngsters know what that is
it's funny i wrote that. i meant digital recorder. which i keep on top of the ice box. er, i mean fridge.
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