Welcome to a new Monday post with 3 random thoughts on all things guitar, music, and life, including foot tappers, Vince Lombardi, and the new podcast. Here we go…
#1 – “Ladies and gentlemen, this is a guitar”
I heard a funny little story the other day about superstar football coach Vince Lombardi.
Allegedly, he would start off each season with his team in front of him by holding up a football and saying, “Ladies and gentlemen, this is a football”.
This was his way of letting them know he would be focusing on the fundamentals of the sport for the season.
…And you know what, it seems most of the best coaches in most sports do the same.
They focus on drilling the basics.
That’s what scores more points and wins more games than anything else.
Sure, the fancy stuff catches the eye, but how many times does fancy stuff win games?
It’s the same with the guitar.
Most guitarists tend to play basic chords such as a G, D, C, and Em far more than they play fancy chords such as Bbm7 or C11.
So it’s worth mastering these chords, playing them smoothly, and learning what exciting things you can do with them.
That’s just one example for the guitar.
Later, you can always add in the more complex-sounding chords, but really, it’s all about the fundamentals most of the time.
#2 – Why foot tapping is so important
A lot of people know that tapping your foot to the beat when you play is important…
Although some guitarists forget to do it.
Others know it is useful but don’t know why.
Well, when you tap your foot to the beat, it becomes your internal metronome.
It helps to stop you from speeding up and slowing down.
…And when you get better and start mixing and matching rhythms, foot tapping becomes even more important.
It’s like the north star for your rhythm that keeps your playing tight.
Whenever I jam some fancy Hendrix-style chordal embellishments, I find that if I don’t tap my foot, the rhythm can quickly fall apart.
…But when I’m foot tapping, my sense of groove feels so much better.
So, if you don’t do much or any foot tapping yet, don’t worry a huge amount, but do try to incorporate it into your playing as soon as you can.
Even if that just means a little foot tapping to one song per day.
Foot tappers tend to have better groove for sure.
#3 – New podcast update and a useful lesson
A couple of weeks ago, I asked if you thought the idea of me creating a podcast was good or bad.
I expected some people would be keen, but the number of enthusiastic replies I got was pleasantly surprising, so guess what…
The new podcast is coming soon!
I’m not exactly sure when I’ll start it (likely towards the end of March), or what the schedule will be, but I’m excited for this.
I’ve even bought the domain for the potential name of the podcast and I have an illustrator creating some artwork and a logo.
The style of art will work really well with the name and the branding I want for this – it’s kind of “out there”, but in a fun way.
The other day I drew a quick sketch of a potential idea for the artwork and gave this to the illustrator.
The difference between my sketch and his was night and day.
Mine was simple and cartoonish and his was rather brilliant.
I could have kept working on my own version, but it would have taken me a long time to get to his level.
This is an important lesson for us all which goes to show, where possible we should always “outsource” the things we are no good at.
Take the guitar, for instance.
For someone who doesn’t know how to play, doesn’t know what good technique looks like, and doesn’t know how to create a plan, it’s wise to get help here.
Of course, I offer various products and resources, but getting help can mean learning from friends, picking the brains of more experienced people, and/or getting some sort of tuition.
…But if you do want my help and support in a variety of ways, you may want to check out this below.
It’s my “one-stop” solution and contains what I believe is everything you need to make big progress on the guitar and go from beginner to intermediate.
Enjoy your Monday and I hope you have a great week!
…And as you’re a member of the DTAA, you have my best resources at your fingertips.
Saying that, remember if you ever get stuck, simply email me, or leave a comment inside the membership.
As always, I’m here to help and I’m rooting for you!
P.S. This post was originally taken from Dan Thorpe’s private email list. To get blog posts like this sent to you which are full of great tips to make fingerpicking, strumming, and learning guitar more enjoyable (especially if you are over 40) join Dan’s list. It’s 100% free, HERE.