TGP Collective Super Chops Thread (Course Started 02/01/2010)

Discussion in 'Playing and Technique' started by Kappy, Dec 29, 2009.

  1. eclecto-acoustic

    eclecto-acoustic Supporting Member

    Messages:
    8,604
    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2011
    Location:
    ze Island
    Hey guys n gals,

    Just got directed to this thread by Clifford-D. I got the book, though I haven't read it yet and probably won't be able to start for a while yet. I have a fingerstyle course that I am starting right now (playing a wedding this summer, and the main requested song is complex fingerstyle), so it might be some time before I hit up the book. Plus, by then, my fingers will have limbered up for what I expect will be some...interesting...chords.

    That being said, subscribed, and I look forward to it!
     
  2. Andyguitar66

    Andyguitar66 Member

    Messages:
    20
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2014
    Location:
    Cape Cod, MA
    I see the HR course as a three pronged attack on your playing. First in the chords and chord shapes, so many new ones and stretched ones that I don't think I'll ever use. But playing them has made me look at the regular voicings I use and opening them up to expand them. I just started the 8th week (triplets begin) and there are some voicing which are very challenging (many that haven't infiltrated my gig playing yet). In a rock setting, these chords may not all be applicable but if you are looking to create a new sound with a different harmonic landscape these chords could be a doorway.

    Secondly, understanding the chords and arpeggios so that there is a very deep understanding of how the chords are built and their place in the keys is so valuable. Of course, most rock songs don't modulate but if you understand how their chords are built and their function within the key, you have more power and tools.

    Finally, it is about technique and improved accuracy and control at higher tempos in both hands, so without question that would be helpful to playing any kind of tune. As I'm playing through the program, I would definitely apply this to a new song that I'm learning to really get inside the changes and be able to understand the harmonies within.
    Worth your time!!!!
     
  3. Andyguitar66

    Andyguitar66 Member

    Messages:
    20
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2014
    Location:
    Cape Cod, MA
    Good luck, it's a great course (thus far, just started triplets in week 8) and though it does get tedious at times (I practice at 4:30 in the morning and that third 10 minute practice session, almost puts me asleep) it is worth it. The application of this book is just started to show up on my gigs and I feel stronger and confident.
     
  4. Clifford-D

    Clifford-D Member

    Messages:
    17,086
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2007
    Location:
    Close to the burn zone
    I would think yes, the idea of playing a constant line of 8ths, triplets, and 16ths the way Howard Roberts suggest can be applied to any music, try playing continuous Jerry type lines but just in an unbroken constant stream of 8ths.

    One of the most valuable things I've got from this well worn book with no cover is that moments in a solo where there might be a rest, that rest, most likely a very important part of the phrasing gets filled with a tone, this tone that replaces the rest I feel is very important to be able to hear. The HR study focuses on that very thing.
    I play with lots of phrasing but this knowledge that there is always a tone to fill a rest area is always on, and I think that makes everything a bit more relaxed in the end, no right or wrong.
     
  5. Andyguitar66

    Andyguitar66 Member

    Messages:
    20
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2014
    Location:
    Cape Cod, MA
    Just reading my copy and looking at a PDF on Scribd and noticing there isn't a chord chart for 4-B, which is "All the things" in c minor. Anyone have that sheet?
     
  6. GellertSz

    GellertSz Member

    Messages:
    8
    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2014
    Hey guys :)

    I gonna start today with the programm. Read all the preperation and pointers last night, and got really motivated. But some things seem a little bit unclear for me.

    For week one, somebody wrote 60 in the "week end tempo objectiive" bracket.
    Should I start with Tempo 60, or start below it and work my way up??
    Then, every day I should put up the tempo 2 points, right?
    What whould be a good tempo to start?

    Another thing... I have to play 8th nothes over the progression, no rules as which pattern or string or something. But should I only play straight 8th notes?

    I couldnt find something about straight or swing 8th notes, so do you just play one day straight, one day swing, or dont you practice swing notes at all in this 20 weeks?


    Thank you so much, hopefully I can start today :)
     
  7. MartyWilliamson

    MartyWilliamson Member

    Messages:
    69
    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2011
    Location:
    Effingham Il.
    Good luck GellertSz!

    I started at 60 bpm. Went up 2 clicks per day until it got to be too fast to follow the changes as I soloed. I finished the course at about 120. DO NOT focus too much on speed, that's not the real benefit of doing super chops.

    If I'm remembering right, I did straight 8th notes for the first section ( somewhere in this thread it was advised to do straight not swing).

    Triplets for the 2nd section and a combo of swing 8ths and triplets on the last section.
     
  8. GellertSz

    GellertSz Member

    Messages:
    8
    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2014
    All right, but 60 seems a bit fast for me as I thought that you have to start REALLY really slow.

    besides, is there anything I miss or is the program basically just saying:
    play scales or arpeggios very carefully over the changes I give to you and increase your speed slowly while watching your fingers carefully..?
     
  9. GellertSz

    GellertSz Member

    Messages:
    8
    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2014
    So yeah, day 1 complete. After a few unclarities I finally got into it

    I warmed up with very very slow notes, maybe 20 bpm, then I got into a tempo, which seemed so slow to me, that I really could focus on my left and right hand synchronisation and my left hand technique, which was around 30bpm. But then I did the math and thought that 50bpm in week 2 seems to be a bit TO slow.


    So I did 50bpm, which has been a hassle to tap into my looper, I dont think that I can do the 2 bpm+ next day very precisely, but Ill try.


    The absolute limitation to this small tempo and 8th notes really gave me freedom in my head to get clear about when to play which notes, which fingerings to use, improvisation concepts.

    I always had "playing scale very slow" and "continuous 8th notes" in my practice plan, but I guess I never really pulled it of because I got distracted or I didnt REALLY concentrate on everything because I felt like "man, I can play this scale, why do it so slow...".



    Really motivated for the next 20 weeks, hopefully it stays this way :D
     
  10. Clifford-D

    Clifford-D Member

    Messages:
    17,086
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2007
    Location:
    Close to the burn zone
    At 20bpm you have so much time to think the thing out moment by moment. But I want to suggest that what you are doing is not metronome work.

    Take All The Things You Are, or ATTYA as we call it here on TGP. The first chord is Fm7, it is the vi chord in the key of Ab. It is the Aeolian mode. Chord tones are F Ab C Eb........

    This is NOT what you want in your active mind when in the moment of improvising. All this data should be known and understood before the improv. Improv is not this gathering of info, it is flowing automatically through the landscape with no analytical process going on. It's like meditation, the active analytical mind relaxes.
    Liken it to talking,, do we just flow through the landscape of conversation. We don't think this is a verb, that's a noun,,, we simply talk, improv is the very same thing.

    This is why the tempo is at 60bpm for starting and not 20bpm. 60 is the slowest I would recommend for starting, if it's too fast to think all this stuff out then that is great. If you can't flow, step away and "re"learn all the data till it's second nature.
    Take time to analyze the fretboard and map out F Aeolian till it's second nature.
    These are prerequisites to flowing improv imo, it's prereqs to tackling ATTYR in a natural way.

    It all comes down to relaxing the active mind and simple focusing on one thing in a reflective way. Push the metronome up and don't think, just play. It's that simple. If you screw up you will know what to work on away from the guitar.
     
  11. GellertSz

    GellertSz Member

    Messages:
    8
    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2014
    I totally agree about your definition of "how to improv vs think something out", but here in this context, I do not exactly know if Howard Roberts wants us to freely improvise for the 3x10min or if he wants us to be really focused on our technique and the way how we do stuff to improve it..

    outherwise it would be a bout about "how to freely improvise in 20 weeks", am I wrong?

    would love any advice about mr. robinsons idea "how" to play in the 3x10min!
     
  12. Clifford-D

    Clifford-D Member

    Messages:
    17,086
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2007
    Location:
    Close to the burn zone
    I've had this book since the first month it came out. I see it as an open invitation to explore a number of avenues.

    - as a metronome ex using straight 8ths, or 16ths, or whatever, as long as it is a steady stream of notes with no rhythmic phrasing. This makes the chosen tones act as phrasing tools just like rhythmic phrasing. Lots of leading tones and chromatics.

    - as a reading metronome study. Reading HR solos are of great value and demonstrates how to have strong phrasing without rhythmic rest and ties etc.

    - as a comping exercise and chord workout

    - as a "name that tune" game

    - as a technique builder

    - as a 20 week jazz camp

    - etc...

    I've owned this book for over twenty years and still have not done all the things I said could be done with it. For me I can see or get the concept that Howard was conveying to us, and I feel that is the prize. Just working on a few tunes in the book is enough to have the concept understood. Once I "get it" I may start to fade away from the book. But I always come back. Mostly to read his solos. Excellent reading practice. And what I "get" from the book I use in life.
     
  13. Clifford-D

    Clifford-D Member

    Messages:
    17,086
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2007
    Location:
    Close to the burn zone
    Speaking of "getting the prize",,, I suggest Flavaham still work on one or two tunes in the manner suggested. It will really open your ears to a chromatic wonderland. Read HR solos with the metronome, it's a bit old school but has a futuristic vision. And you see/hear the same soloing devices/licks used in all of those solo's. Used in different ways.

    I promise you that it will only enrich your Jerry Garcia interests. The proof is in Kimock. If needed he can sound great doing Jerry, but he has a "jazz" mind. Whatever "jazz" means.

    None of this will hurt your mojo (style).

    It's a great thing to do, even if it's only partial.
     
  14. Andyguitar66

    Andyguitar66 Member

    Messages:
    20
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2014
    Location:
    Cape Cod, MA
    Just finishing week 16 and have some observations about the process, probably nothing new but hopefully if others are playing through this method book they might match my "aha" moments.

    1) not up to the speed, but being very careful to be able to play a tempo without clipping notes or melodic runs. That being said, I do make mistakes occasionally and I'm not sure whether I should slow it down so much that there is no mistakes or continue what I'm doing which 95% is clean playing with smooth transitions around the guitar fret board. Mistakes are coming mostly from shifting, particularly leading a change with my pinky.

    2) That being said, in a mind set of deliberate practice (If you haven't read the Talent Code by Daniel Coyle, it's a must. It's all about intense focused practice for learning a skill at the highest level, relating to music, sports and pretty much anything), whatever fingering pattern or run is not smooth, I'm isolating and doing separate practice to fix technique issues. So often in the past, I would often pick up the guitar and just play what I knew for a majority of a practice session and maybe try one or two new concepts at the end. Now I've turned that around and work on what I don't know and even though I make a ton of mistakes I start identify weaknesses and improve on that technique. I know it sounds like an easy concept, but I wonder how many of us play what we already sound good on and don't stretch out.

    3) New physical and mental strength is not showing up in my gigs yet, not sure why, but I know it's a process and it will come out of me when it's time. That being said, I've never felt better or stronger.

    4) Still highly recommend the book, and after the 20 weeks are done, going to pick new songs and still do the same kind of treatment. A new tune a week would really expand my repertoire and the process would really get under the skin of the changes. Also I haven't played Howard's solos, so I may pick one of those a week to get better at sight reading and grab some of his ideas.
     
  15. Clifford-D

    Clifford-D Member

    Messages:
    17,086
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2007
    Location:
    Close to the burn zone
    I hope you've found ways to simplify and/or edit those stretch chords. No chord is worth hurting yourself over.
     
  16. Clifford-D

    Clifford-D Member

    Messages:
    17,086
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2007
    Location:
    Close to the burn zone
    An idea to consider is the ease in how you process what you hear in your head. The clearer you get with that, the cleaner your paying will get. It's like a perk for good hearing.

    A great thing to do is sing along with your playing, it opens a new avenue for playing a continuous line and instant connection to the brains thoughts. A bit tricky to do because it's a whole new neural pathway to wake up and explore imo. A whole lot of jazzers do it.

    Sounds good
     
  17. Trapp

    Trapp Member

    Messages:
    243
    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2011
    Location:
    Akron, OH
    I'm going to be starting Super Chops on January 1st. Anyone else in?

    -T
     
  18. Kappy

    Kappy Member

    Messages:
    14,039
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2005
    Location:
    Soho, NYC
    Nice idea. I might be game for another pass.
     
  19. Dajbro

    Dajbro Supporting Member

    Messages:
    2,118
    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2005
    Hmmmm......tempted to try this.
     
  20. kuschnjo

    kuschnjo Member

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2011
    Currently at week 2 of the program.
    This thread planted the idea in my hand some 2 years back, but I was avoiding it for a long time. The lack of progress for the past few months made me consider it again.

    I had to postpone the start of the course by a week just to practice the chord voicings - the first few days were really painful just playing the chords to a slow click. For some of the chords I use alternate fingerings then are written in the notations + I like to use my thumb whenever I can.

    As far as tempo goes, I am trying to adhere to the recommendations put forth by the book - although there is a here in there in each pass, I feel pretty good with the tempos so far.

    The worst problem comes at the end of each week, when I need to switch the chords progression and get down new voicings.

    So far I am happy I got into this. It brought much needed discipline in my practice routine.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice