Welcome to a new Monday post with 3 random thoughts on all things guitar, music, and life, including thoughts on Roy Orbison, my Thorpeathalon, and “Six String Lifers”


#1 – Roy Orbison

Just as I was heading to bed the other night, on TV I noticed a show about Roy Orbison.

So I started watching it.

…And well, let’s just say I was hooked and watched the whole thing.

Lots of folks were talking about Roy, his great voice, songs, and the “cool factor” he had.

No one mentioned his guitar playing, but he wasn’t really renowned for that.

(Although, he was a solid player who was always enjoyable to listen to in my opinion).


On the show, Bono from U2 talked about how he wrote a song that was inspired by Roy.

Then, randomly after a U2 gig, Bono was working on the song backstage, and guess who walked in?

Roy and his wife.

Then Roy said he and Bono should work on a song together.

It was serendipity, it seemed.

The song was “She’s a Mystery to Me”.


Another cool bit from the show was when K.D. Lang (who sang on his ‘87 version of “Crying” with him) said…

Roy’s singing “seemed effortless, but it wasn’t without effort.”

That’s how guitar playing as well as singing should be.

All great musicians have the ability to make it look easy.

…But remember, to get to that point often requires a lot of actual effort.


#2 – Thorpathalon

My local gym is closing down for a year or two for a huge rebuild.

Annoying as I have to find a new gym!

For me, training is fun, and it breaks up the workday wonderfully.

Lately, I’ve had a great routine which I call the “Thorpathalon.” (Yes, I’m a dork I know, haha).

It’s like a triathlon for lazier folk.

I do 25 minutes of weight training, a 2km run, and then 10 minutes in the sauna.

The sauna bit is quite nice, although I’m already dripping sweat before I go in.


Each time I do the weights, I try to lift a little more than before.

Each time I get on the treadmill; I try to beat my last time.

And in the sauna, well, I just go in there to relax.

So, what does this have to do with guitar playing?

Not a lot… Or does it?


Well, I think it does, because on the guitar there are two key things I encourage all students to do…

  • Have a solid practice routine you enjoy
  • Try to get a little bit better each day

It’s that consistency, clarity, and desire to keep making tiny improvements that count.

Each time I run, I literally improve by about 2-4 seconds.

Yet I know if I keep that up, by the end of the year, that will mean great improvements from where I started.


Routines are great.

And if you like routines, my new book, The Six String Lifer’s Handbook, has some simple routines (plus the “5-Star Award”) that will help you get the very best out of yourself and the book.

Speaking of which…


#3 – Why “Six String Lifer”?

A few people have been curious about what that means exactly.

Well, for me I don’t like boring old titles.

I wanted a title to inspire.

So, what does “Six String Lifer” mean?

Well, “Six String” is of course another name for a guitar.

“Lifer” is someone who, of course, does something for life.


All that is probably obvious, but what is not obvious and not always talked about is this…

Playing guitar should be for life – it is a lifelong skill we can cherish forever.

It’s something that once you truly get hooked, you will never stop doing.

Sure, there may be moments in life where you don’t play quite as much as other times.

…And other times when your heart flutters with excitement driving home just thinking about playing.


Either way, learning guitar is a wonderful thing.

If you haven’t gotten to the point where you feel like you couldn’t live without the guitar yet, that’s okay.

I truly believe everyone can do it – the key is finding the ways that work for you.

…But do remember this, the guitar is a lifelong friend – through thick and thin, it will be there by your side.

Maybe I am getting slightly sentimental about it, but it’s true.


Keep enjoying it for life.

It’s so worth it!

Dan Thorpe

Guitar Domination


P.S. If you want to, you can find out more about the book below…

Check out my brand-new and exclusive spiral-bound book today

…And if you enjoy fingerpicking, strumming, Travis picking, blues, and other fun acoustic styles, then you’ll no doubt love this book.


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.

Add Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.