Should I supplement my lessons with other sources online?

teofilrocks

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,671
I've been taking guitar lessons now for 8 months. There's still a lot of theory and application to cover it feels like. I like my instructor, don't have any issues with his teaching. But sometimes I'm curious about other methods, either styles of learning theory, or application of it, or just plain curious. Or I have a question, but I don't want to wait until my lesson or use of that valuable time with something I can have answered whenever I have a free moment.

But I've tried not to watch too many YT lessons/tips becuase I don't want to undermine (or confuse) the way I'm learning guitar/music theory. Part of me thinks that a number of different paths can get me there, but not if I try all of them at the same time: pick one and stick with it. So, am I overthinking this, or is it wiser to just stick the path of my instructor?
 

guitarjazz

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
25,228
I've been taking guitar lessons now for 8 months. There's still a lot of theory and application to cover it feels like. I like my instructor, don't have any issues with his teaching. But sometimes I'm curious about other methods, either styles of learning theory, or application of it, or just plain curious. Or I have a question, but I don't want to wait until my lesson or use of that valuable time with something I can have answered whenever I have a free moment.

But I've tried not to watch too many YT lessons/tips becuase I don't want to undermine (or confuse) the way I'm learning guitar/music theory. Part of me thinks that a number of different paths can get me there, but not if I try all of them at the same time: pick one and stick with it. So, am I overthinking this, or is it wiser to just stick the path of my instructor?
I know people that take lessons from several people...not all the time but they rotate around. In the meantime there are some extraordinary books and other resources that you should at least be reading while pinching off a loaf. Do you subscribe to Guitar Player Magazine?
 

teofilrocks

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,671
I know people that take lessons from several people...not all the time but they rotate around. In the meantime there are some extraordinary books and other resources that you should at least be reading while pinching off a loaf. Do you subscribe to Guitar Player Magazine?
No, I don't have any subscriptions. I was considering JamCentral I think it is, for backing tracks to practice over.
 

Lephty

Member
Messages
1,698
IMO it's a great idea to look at YouTubes etc. while you have a teacher who you're working with regularly. That way you can get your teacher's opinion and input on the things you pick up.
 

muzishun

Member
Messages
7,665
Learn from any source available. Youtube is great. Instead of lessons, watch guitar covers. A picture is worth many words.

I would limit the theory with your teacher. Unless he is great at teaching it, and you are willing to pay (and sacrifice guitar lesson time) for what you can learn a lot of on your own...... like when uh, on the toilet as gtrjazz suggests. Then take specific questions to him and see if you get a clear, concise answer. If he goes off on a bunch of tangents confusing you and not really answering ........he is not a good theory instructor.

I teach and have found anywhere between zero and 20% of the lesson time devoted to theory is (generally) plenty.

Though I love it when I have a student interested in theory and willing to spend a lot of time on it, I have learned this can be a selfish exercise. It's best for the student if such info flows organically, and is not dwelled on or mistaken for learning guitar.
 

teofilrocks

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,671
Learn from any source available. Youtube is great. Instead of lessons, watch guitar covers. A picture is worth many words.

I would limit the theory with your teacher. Unless he is great at teaching it, and you are willing to pay (and sacrifice guitar lesson time) for what you can learn a lot of on your own...... like when uh, on the toilet as gtrjazz suggests. Then take specific questions to him and see if you get a clear, concise answer. If he goes off on a bunch of tangents confusing you and not really answering ........he is not a good theory instructor.

I teach and have found anywhere between zero and 20% of the lesson time devoted to theory is (generally) plenty.

Though I love it when I have a student interested in theory and willing to spend a lot of time on it, I have learned this can be a selfish exercise. It's best for the student if such info flows organically, and is not dwelled on or mistaken for learning guitar.
That's an interesting perspective. When I started lessons I actually told my instructor that I wanted to learn music theory as applied to guitar, even more than guitar playing technique, because I felt that's where I was completely lacking. And I wanted someone who I could bounce questions off of and who would correct me when I had the wrong idea.

But now that I have more theory understanding, perhaps I can focus on playing and do more theory study on my own.
 

71strat

Member
Messages
10,335
If youre happy with your teacher, and you have mastered the previous lesson... Then I would say go out and find people to jam with.

I also believe the teacher should be teaching you songs that youre interested in, and you should also be listening to records/CDs, and learning songs by ear. No Tab. Period, when learning by ear. Start simple.

I also recommend a lot of practice on Acoustic guitar.
 

Rezin

Member
Messages
2,206
I still take lessons, and before guitar lessons, a long time ago, I took several years of piano. I have some thoughts on the learning process. One thought is, the teacher and student are equally responsible for the learning process. If the student isn't getting what he wants, he should say so. At that point, there are several options: he could get a different teacher, the teacher could change what he is doing, or the teacher could explain why it's critical that the student learn what he is teaching (and then it is up to the student to make a judgment: is it really critical?) I don't buy the idea that the student is (always) too ignorant to help. If all a kid wants to do is play metal, then trying to teach standard notation is a waste of time. The student may broaden his interests later, and that's the time for the teacher to broaden his teaching.

If I were a teacher, giving hour-long lessons, I would start by teaching songs of the kind the student wishes to learn. And I would push him into learning a number of different chords, and how to make the changes, so he could play a lot of different songs in whatever genre he prefers, rather than banging on "Comin' Round the Mountain" or some such. When he could play rhythm so that he could accompany songs, I would start broadening the lessons. A half hour would still be given to playing tougher and tougher songs, but I'd also start pushing the theory: maybe twenty minutes per lesson, some of it straight book-learning so that he understands how chords are made, how to play over chords, the major, minor and pentatonic scales, etc. For the last ten minutes or I would focus on technique, especially of the right hand, until that was under control. Much of music, if you're going to take it past the campfire level, is a weaving together of theory and practice. You really need both if you want to understand what you're doing, and how to expand on what you already know.

My basic feeling is that it is virtually impossible to "teach" anything. All a teacher can do is facilitate the learning by the student. The student isn't a milk jug that you can just fill up: he has a positive responsibility to learn. If he just wants to be filled up until he is SRV sometime next month, then he's outa luck.
 

dewey decibel

Member
Messages
11,487
You're taking lessons what, once a week? I'd supplement however I felt necessary. It's not like you're in a conservatory or college program dedicating the majority, studying with someone with a very strict regimen.
 

teofilrocks

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,671
You're taking lessons what, once a week? I'd supplement however I felt necessary. It's not like you're in a conservatory or college program dedicating the majority, studying with someone with a very strict regimen.
Yes, 1 hour lesson per week.

I take this lesson from 6-7pm after work, and my brain is sometimes a bit fried already by the time I start. So lately I've asked for a bit less theory and more of specific song examples and guitar techniques.
 

22Top

Member
Messages
1,249
I just signed up for the TrueFire All Access program - $120 for a year is a great deal!

I second truefire. I just buy lessons as I find ones I like. All Access is a great deal, and I loved it when I had a free trial... But I've got a toddler and so don't have the time make good use. Some courses take me 3 months to work through. Buying them individually helps with my tendency to run around the site sampling bits of everything.

I recommend truefire to all my guitar playing buds though. Great value even when buying downloads.
 

hacker

Member
Messages
1,171
Just an example here-I used to read about modes and scales all the time in Guitar for the Practicing Musician and Guitar Player magazines but I could never make much sense of it. In my early 30s I finally decided to take lesson from a teacher (this was pre-YouTube, BTW). I think I understood the basics of modes, harmonizing the major scale, and chord construction, all after one lesson. There is no substitute for a good teacher.

Most YouTube teachers I would avoid. Although I do like the Active Melody guy.
 




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