Welcome to a new Monday post with 3 random thoughts on all things guitar, music, and life, including thoughts on a practice warning, adapting to your schedule, and more.
Here we go…
#1 – A practice warning
A little problem I see some students struggle with is this…
They often feel like they should be practising more than they should.
Life can get in the way, so they make a pact with themselves that when they get more time, they’ll go “full-on” with their practice.
For example, they may say something like, “I’ll practise for 2 hours a day once I get a certain task finished”.
…But you have to be careful doing this because if you make a pact with yourself to practise a certain amount…
…And you don’t stick to that amount, it can cause feelings of guilt which can be demotivating.
I’d much rather a student say they will practise for 15 minutes per day pretty much every day…
…Than someone say they’ll practise for 2 hours every day for a week BUT then soon after go a week without picking up the guitar.
It’s always worth remembering that daily consistency is key – not wild ups and downs.
#2 – Practise to a schedule that suits you
When it comes to practising, it’s all about what works for you.
I thought about this recently as this has been a super busy month for me with some of the exciting things going on here behind the scenes (I’ll share more on these soon).
I thought about taking a week off from the Acoustic Asylum podcast.
…But I quickly thought, “Nope. I want consistency,” and I know many of you are enjoying the podcast so far.
Instead of skipping a week, I thought, why not move the day I release the podcast to a day that suits me?
So instead of releasing the new episodes on a Sunday, the new Acoustic Asylum episodes will be out on a Tuesday from now on.
Sunday is a day of rest after all!
I have no real idea why I chose Sundays to release them before, but Tuesdays make more sense for me.
It’s just a little reminder that it’s important to work on a schedule that suits you.
That goes for things like this, but 100% goes for your guitar practice too.
#3 – End of summer
On Friday, it’s the 1st of September and I always get a little whimsical when September comes around.
The six-week holidays are over and a few days later, Archie will go back to school.
I find the six weeks of holidays to be a real balancing act between being a father, doing my work, and having fun and doing my hobbies/gym/, etc.
But I love it.
Archie and I have the best time.
…But school is good for him. It’s nice for him to be with his friends and have that routine.
One thing that I am excited about though, is the 1st of September when I will release the new DTAA lessons.
One of these lessons is on playing some simple blues lead guitar that anyone can learn (some of the licks are just a few notes long).
I go through a series of my best blues licks in order from really simple to slightly more complex – so there is something for everyone.
It’s a fun way of learning the blues in a very progressive way.
The other day, Archie and I were jamming with the guitar (which consisted of him and me singing and strumming his favourite tune, which is “Ms. Jackson” by a band called Outkast).
I played him some of these blues licks and it was interesting to see which ones he liked the sound of best.
He’s never really heard any blues guitar (apart from me occasionally) so it’s interesting to hear what a 7-year-old thinks.
It must be fascinating hearing music like the blues for the first time as a child.
The book Guitar Hero by Gary Marcus talks about some of the reasons why we love the music we do. (I might delve into this topic in the future).
Anyway, this new lesson will be released in the Dan Thorpe Acoustic Academy on Friday.
I’ll also release the other new lessons then too.
In one of these other lessons, I’ll share a very powerful and unique strumming tip.
…And in another, I’ll share my favourite solution to the question of whether or not you should “anchor” your picking hand on the guitar when you play.
If you join before midnight on the 1st, you’ll get all these lessons…
…And, of course, you’ll also get the new No Chord Fingerstyle Mini Masterclass which I’ve spoken about this weekend.
Here’s the link to find out more about the academy.
I hope you have a great week ahead!
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.