The Fog Is Lifting

Had my second lesson with Ron Eschete yesterday. It was jam packed from the time that I walked through the door…

The work that I’d done on ear training has paid me good dividends. I was able to ask pointed questions about what I wanted to know and Ron was able to provide very specific answers to those questions.

Basically, the way that he looks at things, there is a “toolbox” which is comprised of the various basics (grips, scales, arpeggios, etc.) that has to be part of the foundation for the player. Inside of this are the tools, essentially arranging and composition tools, that help create motion and open up what is possible musically. This is a pretty stark contrast to most teachers and guitarists — scales, chords and arpeggios are not the focus! The music (well, the song) is the focus and we use the composition and arranging tools to make room and explore what’s possible with the songs. It’s having a definite impact on how I think about and listen to songs. A welcome change, really.

This is one of the reasons that I wanted to study with Ron. I could always hear in his playing that he was paying attention to something that other folks couldn’t see or hear. It’s very distinct.  I wanted to get behind that and gain a better understanding of what he is listening for when he approaches playing and improvising. As I mentioned before, we’ve been using Blue Bossa to talk about the tools thus far. I’ll be using some new tunes that we talked about to try my own hand at using some of the tools and have him give me feedback on how I applied them.

For a long time, my playing was focused on the analytical/technical part of  playing. Then my time at JBGI opened up my ability to improvise. Now, my time with Ron is actually integrating the two, helping to form a coherent whole.

It’s all very inspiring and a lot of fun too!

August 9, 2010 · kengon · No Comments
Tags: , , ,  · Posted in: Music

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