In-Depth #3

Another two weeks passed, and more progress made! I had two sessions with my mentor since my last blog post. During these two sessions we worked on:

  • Practiced the basic chords again, and added a more complicated chord called the “F” chord
  • Started working on multiple new songs, including “Hotel California”!
  • Perfecting strumming and picking techniques
  • Memorizing notes on the fretboard

Now let’s go a bit more “in-depth” with some progress examples:

The F chord is a super complex chord to play, at least for beginners. It requires you to do a mini bar across the top fret (where you cover multiple strings with the same finger), and then use all your other main fingers other then your thumb across the rest of the fretboard. My mentor can play this chord with ease, but as a beginner, my fingers keep accidentally resting on and muting other strings, making the whole chord sound off. I am continuously practicing this chord though, as it is a major part of many of the songs I am currently practicing. Songs such as “Hotel California”, where the F chord is played many times during the verses and the chorus.

I am also well on my way to memorizing all the notes on the fretboard. This will make it possible for me to play simplified versions of almost any melody from any song, as long as the melody isn’t too fast. I am constantly doing exercises to speed up my strumming and picking technique.

I plan to have fully memorized at least one song in the next two weeks, and to already begin preparing my final presentation method.

How to have a beautiful mind:

How to be interesting:

While working with my mentor, I started having a lot more casual conversations with him, as I was getting to know him much better, and vice versa! We began talking about different elements of guitar in a more casual manner, and about our own personal lives as well. An example of this would be when I started asking my mentor if there were other alternatives to playing the infamous F chord. “What if I played a different F note along the same string, would that still give the same result?”. I also try and spark discussion about debatable topics about different guitar techniques, to try and figure out if there is a way for me to learn guitar better, and to keep us both interested!

How to respond:

Generally, when working with my mentor, I like to immediately test out his ideas and strategies, to confirm or deny them. For example, I want to always check a strumming technique he gives me, to see if it actually does work. If it does, then we have solid proof of his method working, and I can give him positive reinforcement for being correct! If not, then we can begin to work through it together, and see what part of the technique I didn’t yet understand, or what part of the explanation he didn’t clarify enough. This again allows us to stay engaged and interested in the lesson and creates better teamwork and cooperation between us.

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