Here are two more interesting emails I have got this past week.
I hope you find the emails and my thoughts useful…
In reply to last night’s email (about resident troll/charlatan “Tino the Terrible”), this is what Don said…
“GREAT stuff Dan.
We can always use a hearty laugh from time to time. Something tells me Tino is nowhere as good as he thinks he is. Why? Because any decent guitarist knows the time & effort it takes to become good. A few years back when I was struggling with barre chords someone told me “Jimi Hendrix sucked at barre chords in the beginning (like everyone)”. That comment put a huge smile on my face at the time and motivated me even more. Now I love barre chords. Wonder what Tino would say if someone told him Hendrix sucked at barre chords in the beginning.
And as to him sending you a “real” video, I wouldn’t hold your breath. 😊”
It’s a great point.
Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, James Taylor, Tommy Emmanuel, Paul Simon, Jeff Beck, Cat Stevens, David Gilmour, etc…
…All of them started somewhere.
Imagine them back in the day slogging away trying to make music for the first time thinking…
“How the heck do you get this guitar thing to work?”
No doubt this happened to each many times…
We’ve all been there, and it’s good to remember these guys are not extra-terrestrials from outer space with robotic fingers and cyborg brains (actually, I think Tommy Emmanuel might be).
This is why it’s a good idea to read interviews or autobiographies of guitarists you love.
Hearing about their journey in their own words is pretty powerful.
Great email from Don that.
Onto the next one…
In regard to a Travis picking lesson on my members’ site, this is what Theresa said…
“This is the style I learned 60 years ago and have used a sloppy version of Travis picking with a thumb pick through the years. I’ve put away my guitar for years many times and then tried to catch back up with my former abilities. The thing is, I would always reach a plateau and get frustrated.
I never learned to strum properly. I’m really appreciating the slow and deliberate process of building proper technique bar by bar. There is so much to unlearn, and I have to constantly resist the urge to race ahead and go back to my sloppy ways.
Songs I learned from my days hanging around the Newport Folk Festival in the early 60s that work well include You Are My Sunshine, Freight Train, House of the Rising Sun, and many Bob Dylan or Joan Baez songs.”
You know what…
Part of what I do is to teach people how to unlearn (that might make a good title for a book one day about fixing bad habits).
The thing is though, fixing bad habits doesn’t have to be a long and laborious challenge that many people think it should be.
As long as you are steady and methodical like Theresa, you can and will fix them.
I often compare fixing bad habits with the old western movies where they are digging for gold.
It’s hard work at first, there’s a lot of sweat and nothing happens for a few days…
…But then boom, all of a sudden there is a glint in the sand and the gold appears.
Fixing habits can be the same, you have to be very focused for a while and then the new feeling or sensation you are after often creeps up on you all of a sudden.
Anyway, speaking of Travis picking…
For a short while, my Mini Masterclass video course on the subject will be on sale with a big hearty discount.
Inside you will learn a wonderful song in 3 ways – as a solo fingerstyle Travis picked song (tonnes of fun this), as a sing and strum song, and as a singing and fingerpicking song.
It’s a short and concise course, but it covers all the details you need and will help you fix a lot of bad Travis picking and practice habits.
…but if you just want to have some fun, it will be right up your street too.
Enjoy your Wednesday and thanks for all the fun and interesting replies to my email yesterday
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.