“There’s gold in them thar hills…”

Well, I guess it’s more correct to say that there’s gold in those words. Specifically, the things that Ron told me at my last lesson. I have been reviewing the video and making notes like a madman. A lot of ground was covered.

One could say that I didn’t learn anything “new”. That’s very true. There was nothing Ron showed me to work on that I didn’t already have the capability to do or demonstrate, but he did identify a “Grand Canyon” sized gap in my playing — REPERTOIRE! Yup. My suspicions have been confirmed.

Ron went on to tell me that there was nothing about my playing that a good focus on songs couldn’t fix. He went on to say:

“Everything I know about music I learned from songs. Why? Songs convict you. They make you play from point A to point B without interruption. (It) makes you play rhythm, harmony and melody all at the same time.”

I wish everyone could have heard the full discussion about this, because I think it’s advice that’s relevant to every musician. So, we were talking about chord inversions and then he told me:

“Am7 to C6 is the same transposition. But really using that, not just understanding it. That’s why you’re here. See, that’s what the problem is. You understand it, but you can’t use it yet. And the reason you can’t use it is because you’re fixing the sink and the toilet is broke. “

The point he was making was that I was working on the wrong stuff, please don’t take it too literally. The sink and toilet are fine. :-)

The fact is I can play the guitar. I’ve got reasonably good knowledge and ability, it just hasn’t been focused so that it adds up to something bigger that allows me to use all of that. That’s what I’m there to work on with him. Yes, I will improve my guitar playing, but I will do it from making music first and then working my way back into guitar and technique. The shift in perspective is an important one for me.

I can now relax and focus on one thing. Making music.

Everything just got way simpler.

August 4, 2010 · kengon · No Comments
Tags: , , , ,  · Posted in: Music

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