This guy nails it, especially regarding picking technique and the dreaded F major barre chord that authors of instructional programs always seem to put towards the front of most “beginner” guitar method books (a practice I’ve railed against for years.)
Pretty damn tough to hit that first position, full six string barre for most people just starting out, and for many more experienced players as well, yet it continues to be touted as something everybody needs to master within a week or so of playing. All in all, this cat says basically what I’ve said for quite awhile, although he may not say it as “colorfully” as I usually do. As an aside, using the word “scrimshaw” in any context is always welcome too.
“Just like any other physical pursuit – batting, knitting, scrimshaw – you need to get the music fundamentals down before you can really get down to the business of actually making music.”
To me, one of the best ways to tackle some of the issues detailed here is to knock them out in succession, as they are usually related. For example, the rhythmic problems the author describes are influenced by the horrid picking technique cited, and cleaning that up will also help immensely in breaking out of the “pentatonic rut” that can be so limiting. In this case, I’d start with some right and left hand coordination concepts, focus on getting an even and consistent attack with down and upstrokes, and take the rest from there.
Rhythmic issues are pretty easily solved, provided that basic, physical and technical requirements are met. If you can count, you already have the fundamental skills necessary for good rhythm. Counting also gives you the fundamental skills necessary for understanding all the music theory that you could possibly choke down and either use effectively or bore yourself to death with, but that’s another topic altogether.
I’ll be posting a follow up “response” sort of article here (probably with video), taking a few of these ideas a bit further and giving some practical and very doable methods for taking care of these problems once and for all. This stuff is really NOT that hard folks. What do you think?
Image by Ilya Khamushkin