A question for the teachers and the students.

Discussion in 'Playing and Technique' started by SG_Growler, Feb 20, 2012.

  1. SG_Growler

    SG_Growler Member

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    I work full time, attend school part time, and take guitar lessons.

    Obviously I have to make any practice time I have the most economical and efficient. What do you (the student) do to make the most of your practice time? And what do you (the teachers) recommend to students that have to budget their time to get the most out of the lessons you gave them?
     
  2. Clifford-D

    Clifford-D Member

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    do mindless work at work while you head is full of music and your lessons. :)
     
  3. SG_Growler

    SG_Growler Member

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    I'd probably wreck the truck, then my time problem would go away.
    :rotflmao
     
  4. guitarjazz

    guitarjazz Member

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    Set small goals. I went through all the Barry Galbraith books, practicing an hour before gone off to work in the morning.
     
  5. dewey decibel

    dewey decibel Supporting Member

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    Driving a truck? Can you listen to the radio or a CD? Lots of ear training you can do. Even if you just have the radio put on the oldies station (I imagine you're familiar with those songs, but if not select a station that has songs you know well) and sing harmonies to the melody. In fact you don't have to actually sing, you can hum or whatever just as long as you're sticking an actual note. Pick an interval and stick it, maybe start with 3rds. Do some songs where you follow the key (so some 3rds will me natural, some minor), but once you get that down try all natural 3rds. It might not sound good but that's not the point. Then try 5ths, 4ths, 6ths, etc. I did this while I delivered pizza years ago, helped me immensely.
     
  6. SG_Growler

    SG_Growler Member

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    I have NO IDEA what you just said here.
    Somehow I know it's important, but I don't understand what you're saying.
     
  7. gennation

    gennation Member

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    Simple, I always base the frequency of the lessons based on the availability of practice time to the student. Mind you, I don't teach beginners...so, if you have a lot of practice time I suggest weekly one hour lessons. I had one guy who owned a business that pretty much ran itself...he was taking weekly 3 hours lessons from me for about 6 month!!! And he would come back with EVERYTING rehearsed or written out in all 12 keys, he was a functional sponge ;)

    But if you have a sparingly amount of time to practice I suggest every other week lessons. And in some cases I have guys who come once a month and buy and "afternoon lesson" of 2-4 consecutive hours of time. This works great for the guys who travel a couple of hours for lessons (they have the option of skype lessons but prefer the in-person lesson).

    In the end, if the student wants a lesson every week and isn't able to put in the time to practice and then recap and move on at the next lesson, I tell him he can get the same results taking lessons at the local community college where they don't mind teaching the same lesson to the guy every week.
     
  8. guitarz1972

    guitarz1972 Member

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    My teacher and also myself when I teach, we adhere to a rule of "20 minutes." Just do 20 minutes per day, or at least start there. I agree with the poster who suggested setting small goals for yourself, stuff that you think is easily obtainable. If you stay committed and organize your time efficiently, you might be shocked how much you can accomplish (and learn) inside of 20 minutes a day.

    You want to be very specific about what you want to get out of playing guitar. If you're wanting to be a "for fun" kind of guitar player and do churches, bar jams, local bbq festival, etc. (in other words, most common and easily-gotten gig settings), I'd say about an hour a day is what you want to shoot for and eventually get at if you can. If on the other hand you're wanting to do something at sort of a collegiate level as far as playing the guitar or put together a very high-level game of it, then you'll just need to be very serious about hacking out several hours of practice time, period.

    As a teacher, I never require or expect my students to spend more than a few minutes each day practicing guitar. I've got a student or two who are music minors in college; again, folks like that simply need to do a serious amount of work in many cases. But otherwise, I expect my students to work on certain very specific skill sets that I assign to them (chords, CAGED system, 3 note per string scales in 16th notes at a given bpm, etc. -it all depends on where they are in their playing). But more than that, I want them to learn as many songs as they can and HAVE FUN doing it. Don't stress out too much about it; just pick up the guitar when you can, have a couple of practice points in mind and play to have fun.

    And, communicate openly about your situation with your teacher. If your teacher is worth his/her salt, he/she will be happy to help you put together an effective practice plan based on your individual life schedule.

    Cheers.


    Chris
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2012
  9. SG_Growler

    SG_Growler Member

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    What's CAGED system?

    I am very appreciative of all of the advice people have offered.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2012
  10. guitarz1972

    guitarz1972 Member

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    PM being sent.
     
  11. dewey decibel

    dewey decibel Supporting Member

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    It is important, but to what degree depends on what you want to do in music. A quick explanation is each note in a scale can be represented by a number, here's a C major scale and it's corresponding interval;

    C-1
    D-2
    E-3
    F-4
    G-5
    A-6
    B-7

    So G is the 5th of C. That's how far apart those notes are, an interval of a perfect 5th. A Cmaj chord is built from the root, 3rd and 5th of a C major scale, the notes C E G.

    When I was talking about harmonies I was saying to sing in intervals of a 3rd. So if you have a melody in the key of C that goes like this:

    E D C D E E E

    singing a 3rd up will give you these notes;

    G F E F G G G

    That's a 3rd in the key of C, so the interval between the E and G and the D and F are actually b3rds rather than perfect 3rds. If you were to play perfect 3rds you'd have;

    G# F# E F# G# G# G#

    Here are the two TABbed out so you can hear the difference;


    3rds in the key of C
    1)
    2)8-6-5-6-8-8-8
    3)9-7-5-7-9-9-9
    4)
    5)
    6)

    perfect 3rds
    1)
    2)9-7-5-7-9-9-9
    3)9-7-5-7-9-9-9-
    4)
    5)
    6)

    If you can get to the point where you can hear (and sing) perfect 3rds over the melody to a tune you're doing pretty good. Probably too much information, but I got nothing better to do. :p
     
  12. KRosser

    KRosser Member

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    As a student, I maximize my practice time by focusing on the things that need the most urgent work

    As a teacher, I always recommend students maximize their practice time by focusing on what needs the most urgent work.
     
  13. SG_Growler

    SG_Growler Member

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    I set a timer last night for 20 minutes, and it seemed to help me focus on working on what I was supposed to be learning instead of what I usually do 5 minutes of working, and 35 minutes of noodling.

    I replied. Not sure if it got through or not. If not your explanation made sense.
    I don't think I'll ever be able to sing that. Thanks for taking the time to type that out. I understood it. I just didn't understand what you meant by an interval in the original post. :facepalm <-And this was me when I read the explanation.
     
  14. guitarz1972

    guitarz1972 Member

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    I got your reply, no worries. Glad I could help. The timer is a great thing, and that's exactly what I did when I was hitting it hard with a regular practice schedule.
     

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