The other day I got my partner to watch one of my all-time favourite films ever. (She fell asleep, but I was in my element). It was…


A Fistful of Dollars.


I’m a big film geek and I love the Sergio Leone spaghetti westerns.

In this film, there is a great scene (spoiler alert) where the brilliant Clint Eastwood gets beaten to a pulp…

…And while slowly recovering, plots his revenge on the evil Ramon who rules over the dusty, border town with an iron fist.

Clint knows Ramon has an amazing rifle shot and a signature move.

Ramon always shoots for the heart when trying to kill an enemy.


Therefore, Clint knows when he goes up against him, he must protect his heart or he is doomed.


…So, what does Clint do?

While recovering in a cave hidden away, he gets a steel chest plate and fires at it religiously for days on end.


The reasons are:

1 – To get his laser-sharp shot back, and

more importantly…

2 – To see if the steel plate can take a bullet and indeed protect his heart.


It turns out it does, so Clint goes up against Ramon for the finale with the chest plate hidden under his poncho.

Within a moment of setting foot back in the sun-laden town, Ramon fires and hits Clint in the chest.


Clint goes down.

There’s a pause.


Did the steel chest plate not work? Is Clint a goner?

No, Clint slowly gets back up but boom again, Ramon fires at the chest…

…but yet again he gets back up.

Ramon is perplexed.


This carries on for a bit, but eventually, Clint is in range with his pistol.

He draws faster than the rest, and with a smoking pistol, takes down all of Ramon’s bloodthirsty gang and frees the town from evil once and for all.


Great film, great action, and some powerful meanings on a deeper level.


One of them being – always protect your heart.


It’s true in life and especially when learning an instrument.

When it comes to learning an instrument, the heart is usually what drives us forward…

…Pushes us when we want to give up, and keeps the cauldron burning when the going gets tough.

It is also the part of us that lives and breathes and comes alive with the music when it goes well.


The brain, on the other hand, can solve problems and do amazing things, but it can create self-doubt, and nag at us that we are not good enough.

Therefore, it’s always important to take a leaf from Clint’s book and always look after your heart, and keep the passion going.

Keep your inspiration high by watching your heroes play, listen to the music that makes your heart sing, and…


…Play something, just anything each day, that adds a bit of joy to your week.


If you do that (as well as watch out for the brain being negative), you can have more fun on the guitar for sure, and that’s what it’s all about.

Have a great day!



Dan Thorpe

Guitar Domination



P.S. To get help, inspiration, support, and advice when needed, and if you are a fingerpicking or acoustic guitarist, my EGIC membership is a great place to learn.

It features a like-minded community where you can comment, ask questions, and get help from me and others, as well as much more. (This is just the tip of the iceberg).

Check out the EGIC


P.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.

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