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comment by kingmudsy
kingmudsy  ·  123 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: April 8, 2020

I've got some COVID-19 inspired depression, and a guitar I'm not very good at. Weird forces to put into a dualistic framework, but they're pushing against each other and I'm somewhere along the boundary. I have no energy to think or speak or do, but I'm learning barre chords so that's neat!

I deleted three or four longer comments before leaving this one. What's happening to me?

b_b  ·  123 days ago  ·  link  ·  

How long have you been playing? And what do you like to play? There are a lot of people on here who know a lot about music, so if you're just bitching generally, that's totally cool and I'll fuck off. But if you're looking for advice, ask a question, and I'll bet you get a bunch of replies. Nothing makes most guitar players happier than talking about guitars.

kingmudsy  ·  122 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Very true! I've been playing for about a month, and I've got a decent grasp of open chords and basic strumming techniques. Just enough callus on my fingertips to play for an hour or two without pain :)

I'm a stone-cold beginner, trying to self-teach with all the time isolated. I'll ask for more advice as I run into problems that feel unconquerable due to anything other than a lack of practice, but if you have any tips for starting out I'd love to hear them!

b_b  ·  122 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Ah, so very new. What kind of guitar did you get?

I think most people when they first pick up a guitar want to try to learn some songs they like, and they spend most of their time just doing that. That's fun, and you should. However, I would recommend doing something systematic in addition. The best thing you can do is to learn how to properly finger the instrument, so you can practice running scales, e.g. That's the way you build dexterity.

When I got my first guitar (in 1994, for my 12th birthday), I learned from Mel Bay Method 1. It is the most classic beginner book, and I think it's still popular. Even if you don't care about learning to read music (or maybe you're already a musician, in which case you're 10 steps ahead of the game), you'll at least learn the fingering of some basic scales, which it's hugely helpful. You'll feel lame plucking away at Mary had a Little Lamb, but you'll learn a lot.

Also, if you have $10 to spare, ultimate guitar tabs is an awesome app. I'm decent at playing by ear, and I still consult it all the time. Not ashamed to admit it!

Good luck, and definitely ask questions!

kingmudsy  ·  116 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I've definitely just been learning songs so far, thinking it would be good to stick in a get-oriented phase for a while before trying to step into theory...But I think it's probably time to start learning formal exercises, since I've already built up some enthusiasm and momentum (and calluses) by plucking around :)

I know how to read music from when I used to play the viola, but it's been at least six years since I tried - I quit in high school to focus on other extra-curriculars, as I was never very good at it.

Bought myself the ultimate guitar tabs app, it's been very useful. Mel Bay Method 1 is on deck!

OftenBen  ·  123 days ago  ·  link  ·  

My breakthrough with barre chords came after I got a grip strength training gadget for my left hand.

kingmudsy  ·  123 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Might actually help! Can you recommend any specific products?

OftenBen  ·  123 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I have these, got them over 5 years ago, they work great.