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Old 01-12-2010, 02:58 AM
Lsonboost Lsonboost is offline
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Default I think this is the best way to get help...

Hi my name is Nate Rypka I am 25 have been playing acoustic for 8 months because I taught myself, I live in southern MN and am looking for extra help. I started on an electric and traded for the acoustic because I enjoy the sound much more. I am looking for any type of help or lessons on learning, I am leaning more towards fingerstyle as I do really enjoy classical music but also do enjoy almost all types of music. I would like any advice given, I am not very good as I lose confidence easlily, the intro's I know are tears in heaven, babe I'm gonna leave you, dust in the wind, stairway to heaven, I'd love to change the world, and a couple classical tunes. pretty much to sum it all up I dont have much extra spending money I just would like any help to learn how to play better as I am going more toward classical fingerstyle.

The two guitars I currently own are a hohner HW-220 and a red label Yamaha Fg-230 that I just bought and am having setup because I love the 12 string sound. Please advice or criticism I would like to hear all input.
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Old 01-12-2010, 04:36 AM
Jack Orion Jack Orion is offline
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Simply just keep at it!

Seriously, that's the best way to learn, just keep playing, learn new things, master old things, listen to music and try to imagine what the guitar player is doing, write songs, learn how the fretboard is laid out, etc etc

Just playing will help you to do all of these things!

Something I've learnt is that, if you just can't get something right, don't give up - go away and leave that piece till tomorrow and you might find you've got it, if you haven't, don't worry, leave it again, but keep returning - eventually you'll get it.
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Old 01-12-2010, 05:46 AM
Huckleberry Huckleberry is offline
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One of the great pieces of advice I got from Martin Simpson is to think about what you're going to do before you even get the guitar out of its case. That really helps to focus a practice session.

Are you going to learn something new, or practice a difficult passage? Or are you just going to have a play for fun? How long are you likely to be playing for - a few minutes or do you have a couple of hours? Decide before you start, and you can make the best use of your time and really make progress.

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Old 01-12-2010, 08:22 AM
Broadus Broadus is offline
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Welcome to AGF, Nate! What helps me is to be patient with yourself. Becoming good at something takes time. Patience and persistence will pay off.

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Old 01-12-2010, 08:38 AM
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devellis devellis is offline
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First, welcome. You'll find lots of kindred spirits here.

Everyone stinks when they first start. It seems hopeless. Hours of time may lead to little progress and backsliding is common. It's also common to think, "Who am I kidding? I'll never be any good at this!" Everybody goes through this. And what's more, as you get better, reaching the next level will often feel as impossible as reaching that first one. It comes with the territory. The folks who end up being players are those who take the long view and are willing to be persistent and patient. Every physical and psychological barrier you'll encounter is one that every player has also encountered.

My recommendation is to remember what you love about the guitar and to balance working the guitar with playing (that is, having fun with) the guitar. If this isn't a career and is primarily a source of personal satisfaction, make the journey enjoyable. Part of that is making progress but also refraining from doubt and self-criticism when progress is slow, nonexistent, or retrograde. All of that is typical.

What is also typical is that you'll reach a point at which you can enjoy the sounds you're making and start to realize that you're doing things that you couldn't do before and that, in their own way, are kind of amazing. Those little moments of joy will start to happen with some regularity. There will still be days when you're worthless on guitar, but the balance will shift dramatically in your favor. When you get discouraged or "stuck," try mixing things up a bit. Play some stuff that you wouldn't ordinarily play. Go back to some much simpler stuff and see if you can add something new to it to make it more interesting.

The whole trick is not getting discouraged. Assuming that your biological wiring is intact, if you stick with it, you will get better and better. Some days, you'll see improvement over the course of an hour or less. Other times, weeks may pass with no signs of anything but mounting frustration. Just recognize it all as normal and universal. It doesn't reflect your personal limitations; it reflects the nature of the task. Persist. It'll all come together. Once it does, you'll set higher goals and you'll again go through a process of those goals seeming unobtainable. But this time, you'll have the benefit of past experience, which will have shown you that working at it and keeping it enjoyable (which at times will fight each other) will eventually get you where you want to go.

Explaining this to you has certainly been helpful for me. I need to remind myself from time to time how this all works. I hope it's also been of some value to you.
Bob DeVellis
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Old 01-12-2010, 08:57 AM
Lou777 Lou777 is offline
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Welcome. I just reached my one year anniversary playing and here at AGF. You have come to a great place for help. You have two things going for you, youth and time. Keep the faith and keep at it. Things will fall into place.
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Old 01-12-2010, 05:25 PM
Lsonboost Lsonboost is offline
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Devellis you couldnt have worded that any better, thank you everyone for support and advice. I plan on never giving up and yes I have seen fast and slow improvement but I will continue to stick with it and hope for the best.
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Old 01-12-2010, 09:53 PM
choffman41 choffman41 is offline
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If you can find someone to noodle around with, whether they are better or worse than you, you'd be surprised what you can learn from each other. I have picked up things from kids whose parents weren't born when I started playing....
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Old 01-13-2010, 09:00 PM
Chris Kemp Chris Kemp is offline
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Location: Jacksonville, Florida
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Well lets see ... you have a guitar.... and you have a computer. You may be in a less populated area but you have everything that you need. Use your computer there is a wealth of tutorials on youtube and do a search for chords and tabs. With the aid of the internet my playing has progressed greatly. Oh and try to never turn down a jam session. You can always learn a lot from other players.
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Old 01-14-2010, 03:22 AM
Jesse Matthews Jesse Matthews is offline
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+1 on Youtube, its a great and free way to learn...though there are better teachers then just need to search and youll find in no time, welcome to this great forum
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Old 01-14-2010, 06:34 AM
jmcphail jmcphail is offline
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I do a couple of things that seem to really help me make progress I can identify -

- always playing. I play whenever I have the chance, even if it's only for five minutes, in front of the TV, unfocused, etc. Any time I spend with the guitar in my hands improves my timing and touch at the very least, and dynamics if I have to play quietly. My "feel" improves.

- song focus. I work on songs. Every song has challenges, when I get to a part of the song I can't play, I break it down into pieces and learn those pieces. This often means that I spend a lot of time exploring *other songs* that use the very thing I'm struggling with. Eventually I learn it and make it mine. Eventually I know the song I started to learn is mine, and I've picked up several new things along the way.
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Old 01-14-2010, 09:20 AM
Mike114 Mike114 is offline
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Location: Hayfield Mn
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Hi Nate, I'm from near Rochester and have been playing about 4 years. It's hard to find good teachers, particularly if you are not near a population center.

I'm a self taught finger picker, I'll try to find the book I used to get started and put it up here, a Travis Picking book. I pick mostly chords which gets me thru most songs and am learning to embellish them somewhat by base runs, etc. I'm in a church band with a guy who has been playing 35 years, which helps me alot.

Not sure where you live by, but if you want to get proficient at classical music, you need to target someone who teaches that as a specialty, not someone who dabbles in it. There's a guy near Rushford who teaches classical music, the Root River Guitar Studio, that's a specialty for him. You might want to consider commuting for a lesson every week or two if you find someone who's an hour or more from where you live. Having previous piano or other musical instrument experience helps with classical. The nice thing about going to a teacher is that the teacher will know you WANT to be there and give you extra encouragement and help.

The other thing I wanted to mention, there are AGF members gathering in the Twin Cities on Jan 31, going there and meeting someone who is proficient at the musical style you want to learn might be beneficial.

As others have said, there is alot to be said for the Internet. Learning to read tabs, then download the Itunes song, then play along will get you better. One nice thing about this is that you can learn at your own pace.

Don't try to do too much too fast, but practice alot, you'll get better and your confidence will grow.

Whatever help I can give you, just let me know.

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