I don’t think it is less cool I just think that with more choice of ways to make a sound in music it has created new sounds and musical genres and possibly clouded the view on guitarists but it is still very cool you just have a bit more competition right!
Think about this, all around today are loads of massive music shops the size of hyperstores, far more of and bigger than we ever had in the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s and all have walls and walls of guitars. If it wasn’t cool to play guitar these guys wouldn’t be selling them on such a massive scale and they’ll all be falling like flies but that isn’t happening.
Another thing is that today more royalties are paid out to ageing rockstars than any other area of music. Now these acts are all pretty well guitar driven and their gigs are not just full of ageing rock fans either, there are kids and grandkids of these ageing fans really zoned into this stuff that weren't even born when some of...
Something I was asked recently and What a Great Question!
Learning guitar to me gave me untold confidence and a career of my choosing plus life skills that took me all over the world. In short it was life changing.
As a youngster I lacked self-confidence which affected all aspects of my life both socially and professionally so learning to play the guitar then using that skill, meant that i was doing something others only dreamed of which attracted positive attention. Learning to stand up in front of an audience further built my confidence which helped in both socially and in things like job interviews. Later when i chose to make music my job both playing and teaching I learned more about other peoples needs and requirements and how to appreciate others and empathise with their needs and requirements. Being in Bands took me all over the UK and Europe playing a wide variety of venues and functions, a dream come true!
Moving on armed with only 2 O’Levels (GCSE’s) Grade 5...
I would start with what I call the musical clock which is the 12 notes in a full octave rolled into a circle to replicate a clock (also with 12 points for each of the hours) This makes it easier to picture.
Starting at the top with A can work our way around the clock with the musical alphabet for which I use this rhyme.
The Musical Alphabet is A to G and Everything has a Sharp (#) except B and E
So if you can now picture that clock and start from the Top (A) then the A String on the Guitar is the note of A (Obvious I Know), the 1st fret will be A#, the 2nd Fret B, and so on (see below)
1 A# or Bb
4 C# or Db
6 D# or Eb
9 F# or Gb
11 G# or Ab
So, reading through this is reading the musical alphabet as above
Once you know the musical alphabet and how it translates to the A String you can then transpose this to the other strings so for the E String (which will count for Thin E and Thick E
2 F# or Gb
4 G# or Ab
Do you struggle to pick out all the notes in a guitar solo you are trying to learn?
Or you got the notes but just can’t seem to get the right feel?
When I learn solos with fast sections or a particular feel in it I slow the recording of the solo down. This is how I now approach this problem with my 1–2–1 students and in my online guitar community. These days there are loads of Apps that can slow down audio without changing the pitch but even if it does change the pitch then if you slow down to 1/2 speed then it will be an octave lower but still in the same key. You can then analyse the solo easier and just focus on the section you are trying to master. Always learn longer pieces in bite size chunks then gradually re-assemble them as this can improve your motivation, satisfaction and enjoyment when you master a small section. Also don’t over practice just for the sake of it. If you have had enough and it feels like a chore then put the guitar down, do...
Motivating yourself to practice your guitar can really be a struggle sometimes so I have a few Tips that can help make it a more positive and enjoyable experience
1. Keep your guitar to hand
Try to make it easily accessible at all times like on a stand in the room or maybe a wall bracket if you need to keep it out of reach of small children etc.
Doing this keeps it visible which will also act as a constant reminder and means that it is easy to pick up if you only have a few minutes. If it is locked in a case under the bed you are far less likely to go to all the trouble of getting it out so consequently your practicing and progression will suffer.
2. Get to know the components of your piece
Make sure you know all your chords, the count and the strum you are going to use. Practice your chord changes and if any are challenging then "Think One Finger" when changing between them, maybe you can leave a finger on like C to D7 or move a finger...