Welcome to a new Monday post on 3 random thoughts on all things guitar, music, and life, including fun strumming patterns, cramming, and more…
#1 – Stop cramming!
One bit of advice I tell students a lot is that you need to stop trying to cram things in.
In other words, don’t try to learn too much too soon.
Too many guitarists are in a hurry.
I used to be so bad with this.
Practising felt like revising for exams back in school.
If you were like me, I barely did any revision but crammed it all in at the last minute.
I still did pretty well, but it wasn’t much fun.
I would have had more fun pacing things properly (and I would have done better at school, no doubt about it).
Take your time learning new things, it’s more fun and usually much more productive.
Talking of which…
#2) Learning 2-3 notes can be plenty
If you ever struggle to learn anything new, try to learn just 2-3 notes of a piece on that day.
Refresh them tomorrow.
Perfect them the day after.
When ready, add one or two more notes to this.
Get to playing these few notes really well, with good technique, and a nice tone, so they sound really musical.
Honestly, this is far better than learning 20 notes in a day, forgetting most of them, and having the ones you do remember sound worse than that Boyzone cover of the Cat Stevens classic song, ‘Father and Son’!
Do this, and you will have more fun.
Plus, in a few weeks, you will be well on your way with the piece in question.
#3 – A simple way to have more fun with strumming patterns
Having more fun is not just about learning new things.
It’s sometimes about “maxing out” what you have.
One way to do this is to take something you know and reuse it in multiple ways.
I do this a lot, and I will talk more about this soon, but one way you can max out something is to do this…
Take a simple strumming pattern, one you may have played a thousand times and…
Spice it up in different ways.
This can be by:
- Hitting the bass notes in the chord and mixing it up with the strumming.
- Turning it into a “pick strumming” pattern.
- Adding a simple percussive hit to the pattern.
These are just examples, and there are more of course.
For the April Dan Thorpe Acoustic Academy bonus, I teach those three exact things with the most popular strumming pattern around (and therefore, a pattern many get a bit bored with).
Learning these little variations can reinvigorate the pattern and lots of songs you use it with.
They are simple ideas that will take a little practice, but they are fun for anyone who wants to bring a strumming pattern back from the dead.
Plus, I show you how to apply it to the “50s progression” which gives you a bunch of songs you could potentially use these ideas with (but that is just a bonus within the bonus).
Anyway, the deadline to get this bonus is the last day of the month.
To find out more about the membership and the free gift posted out to new members, you can check out the link below:
Have a great Monday!
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.