Here are two more interesting emails I have got this past week. I hope you find the emails and my thoughts useful…
I enjoy your emails you always have positive ideas but this one about using music to deal with brain issues like dementia etc. really struck home with me.
I should tell you that I am 78 years old and have been playing guitar since I was 14.
This is my story.
Seven years ago, I had a stroke, at first I had no movement on my right side, I lost sight in my left eye, and I couldn’t speak. I was left with was aphasia, which is the ability to speak properly.
During my recovery my speech pathologist had me doing all sorts of speech exercises and when she discovered that I was a guitar player, she wanted me to sing songs while playing the guitar. At first, I was depressed and reluctant to do this, but she convinced me, and I’m so glad she did, as this has been a great help to me.
Since my stroke, I have learned much about brain plasticity and its ability to create new neural pathways that will allow us survivors to regain lost functions, and I now know that singing and playing guitar is much better than reciting words and reading passages from books or newspapers.
It is so multifaceted, and my brain has to control all these functions at the same time.
I still sing and play almost every day. It is enjoyable, it is great exercise for my brain.
I am now able to carry on a conversation without too many miscues, and most people wouldn’t even realize that I have speech problems.
I have pretty much returned to about 90% of my former self.
I don’t know if you will read this as you must get many emails, but I just felt like this is an important way for someone like you to pass on the value of music and the guitar to anyone who is dealing with brain issues.
I certainly did read it (I read all the emails) and wow, that was great.
There is not a huge amount for me to add really, but to say thanks to Wayne.
I found that really inspiring.
A friend, who is another subscriber to this list, had a stroke a while back and is also using his playing to help his recovery.
Reading emails like this highlights how fascinating the brain is and…
How powerful music and playing an instrument can be.
A big thanks to Wayne for the email. I know it will inspire many others.
Onto email #2…
I want to thank you for your course which I bought a few months ago.
It’s difficult to admit that I was rather less of a late starter to guitar playing, having bought my first guitar in 1989. But there was no YouTube in those days and few female role models (other than the wonderful Joan Baez, but she didn’t have a YouTube channel!)
I was rather aimless in my self-taught guitar development.
Nevertheless, I enjoyed some wonderful years busking around Europe strumming some very basic four-chord songs before settling down.
Your courses have inspired me to improve my guitar playing, and to work on the fingerstyle technique which I’ve so long admired in other performers, but never thought I could achieve myself.
I was inspired to write a song. I’ve recorded the song and uploaded it to my SoundCloud account here https://soundcloud.com/emma-dent-1.
I just felt I had to write and thank you for inspiring me to focus my guitar practice, which has led me to an unexpected burst of creativity. I thought I was too old to develop my musical skills, but your courses and newsletters have convinced me that we are never too old to develop – and that creativity is not something reserved for the young!
Thanks, and best regards,
That was another great email.
I had a listen to the song.
Check it out, it sounds wonderful, and I love to hear what students are up to.
So glad to hear Emma, who is clearly a top singer, has stepped up her playing.
The folks around Europe were no doubt lucky to listen to her busking back in the day.
Just goes to show age should never be a barrier, and even after decades of playing there are new things to learn.
It’s all about the journey, enjoying it, believing in yourself, and having fun!
These are the things I encourage and teach, especially in the Dan Thorpe Acoustic Academy.
Next week, I will release the June lessons.
These lessons include a brand-new quiz, a jamming bonus, and a fun two-minute challenge everyone should take.
Join before the end of the month to get them.
I should also say, the DTAA also has a 30-day plan so you know exactly how to get started.
You can find out more at the link below:
Have a great day.
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.