Here is a powerful tip for you.

This is all about helping you to learn songs better, fix issues faster, and play anything more smoothly.


  • First up, choose a piece of music you want to improve.
  • Play it through a couple of times to get in the flow.
  • Grab your smartphone and put it on a tripod or a stand (or prop it up if need be) and record yourself playing the piece.
  • Watch the recording back and on paper, make specific notes about the exact points where there are issues.
  • Focus fully on improving those problem areas with laser-focused detail.


For example, if it’s a song, you’d mark on the notation the exact bars where things falter.

The truth is, for most people there is about 20% of a song that causes 80% of the problems.

If you’ve heard of the “80/20 rule” you will know that is true for most things.

Yes, I know recording yourself is never easy at first (it gets easier though), and if you’ve tried it before, it may have been an awkward experience, to say the least.

…But the recording is objective.


It will highlight the areas that are both good and bad that you might not be fully aware of.

Watching the recording will allow you to really look closely at anything that needs fixing.

…Because as I always tell students, the faster you can spot an issue, the faster you can get to work fixing it.

That will then lead to faster and more enjoyable progress.

It takes upfront effort, but it is worth it.


The other day, Dan Thorpe Acoustic Academy member Mandy, sent me a video of her playing “Here Comes the Sun”.

She did a great job and should be proud of her playing and effort.

Recording herself was great, and it allows her to spot the little areas that need tweaking and smoothing out.

There was nothing in the song she is not able to improve – all she needs now is some laser focus on the few tricky areas – and she will have a wonderful song in her repertoire for life (as long as she doesn’t forget to practise it of course!).


Try it today.

Friday is the end of the working week and a good day to make recordings like this, I find.

You can then spend the weekend making the improvements you need.

Try the above with anything.


For example, I find the 12-bar blues is a good thing to use this method with, as there are always one or two areas students find trickier than others… And in case you don’t know, my course is on sale until tomorrow night.

You can find out about it below…

The Beginner 12-Bar Blues Mini Masterclass


I hope you found this tip helpful and I promise, the more of this you do, the better it will be for your playing.

Have a great Friday!

Dan Thorpe

Guitar Domination



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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