A Little Warm Up

Today I just thought I would try and help anybody that was looking for help with a little warm up exercise I do from time to time with my scales.  I am just going to discuss the first position in Am on a 6 string guitar for the sake a teaching;however, as I’m sure you will see this pattern is easy to repeat for every position whether your playing on a bass or a guitar, thought I’m sure if you were playing on an acoustic guitar it would be much easier to use a cutaway acoustic guitar, as the warm up is primarily for lead. Anyway, the warmup is simply another way to go through the scale to teach your fingers to hit notes in the scale that don’t come one after another.

To play this warm up you will be playing from the top of your guitar to the bottom. In Am your first note will be S:he F:8 (String: high E Fret: 8) and you will continue as follows: S:b F:8; S:he F:5; S:b F: 5; S:b F:8; S:g F:7; S:b F:5; S:g F:5; S:g F:7; S:d F:7; S:g F:5; S:d F:5, S:d F:7;S:a F:7, S:d F:5; S:a F:5; S:a F:7; S:le F:8; S:a F:5; S:le F:5. This may seem complicated at first, especially without a visual to assist you; however, with your guitar in hand I assure you it will become quite clear what the pattern is. And, as you will see, it is simple to repeat this pattern in any key in any position. It is just a simple way to warm up while at the same time training your fingers to think outside of the scale box.

Hope you can find this useful.

Simon

IStillGotMyGuitar

 

The Folk In Me

Ive been on a huge acoustic folk kick lately so I thought I would post a few videos from youtube of some great songs from some great artists that I’ve had on repeat. I’m sure you’ve heard most all of them;however, I don’t think any of them ever get old. The lyrics are below them. Enjoy.

James Taylor-Highway Song

I'm thinking 'bout a broken heart
I'm talking 'bout the break of dawn
You love me while I'm here
Then you can miss me when I'm gone
Sweet misunderstanding
Won't you leave a poor boy alone
I'm the one eyed seed of a tumbleweed
In the belly of a rolling stone
Back on the highway, yeah, yeah, yeah
Back on the road again
I had a little woman in Memphis
She wanted to be my bride
She said, settle on down, traveling man
You can stay right by my side
I tried so hard to please her
But I couldn't hold out too long
'Cause one Saturday night I was laying in bed
And I heard that highway song
Back on the highway, yeah, yeah, yeah
Back on the road again
Now one of these days that highway song will lose its appeal to me
I'm gonna settle on down like a natural born man
I'm gonna live my life naturally (Free and easy)
Until that day the thunder's gonna roll
And I notice there's a sign of rain
So I grab my bags and I pack my clothes
And I'm back on the road again
Back on the highway, yeah, yeah, yeah
Back on the road again
I'm thinking 'bout a broken heart
I been talking 'bout the break of dawn
You loved me while I'm here
and you can miss me when I'm gone
And I said sweet misunderstanding
Won't you leave a poor boy alone
'Cause I'm the one eyed seed of a tumbleweed
In the belly of a rolling stone
Back on the highway, yeah, yeah, yeah
Back on the road again
Here I am again
Holiday Inn
Same old four walls again
Gee, but it's fine to be back home again (whoa, now)
Say, Holiday Inn, I'm on the road again

Neil Young-Dont Let It Bring You Down 


 Old man lying
 by the side of the road
 With the lorries rolling by,
 Blue moon sinking
 from the weight of the load
 And the buildings scrape the sky,
 Cold wind ripping
 down the alley at dawn
 And the morning paper flies,
 Dead man lying
 by the side of the road
 With the daylight in his eyes.
 
 Don't let it bring you down
 It's only castles burning,
 Find someone who's turning
 And you will come around.
 
 Blind man running
 through the light
 of the night
 With an answer in his hand,
 Come on down
 to the river of sight
 And you can really understand,
 Red lights flashing
 through the window
 in the rain,
 Can you hear the sirens moan?
 White cane lying
 in a gutter in the lane,
 If you're walking home alone.
 
 Don't let it bring you down
 It's only castles burning,
 Just find someone who's turning
 And you will come around.
 
 Don't let it bring you down
 It's only castles burning,
 Just find someone who's turning
 And you will come around.

Monsters of Folk-Temazcal
putting on my power, righteous as a rose
 dynamite the mountain, now i'm walking up the road
 the love we made at gunpoint wasn't love at all
 the dancing in the valley, the moons, the mirrored ball
 blew open my mind, now it's an empty room
 swinging in the hammock, dogs are walking across the roof
 i watch you braid your hair, you're from another time
 when the earth wasn't so angry
 and god was on our side
 
 searching west and east
 and all points in-between
 underneath the lines of thought
 you're there and then you're not
 
 the mayans stole tomorrow, hid it underground
 we come with heavy magnets but it still hasn't been found
 i'm sweating out my secrets in the temazcal
 they're screaming in the calle that there are stars about to fall
 
 looking through the trees
 cities and the seas
 things we've seen
 ovnis on the lawn
they're there and then they're gone
 there and then they're gone
 
 searching west and east
 all points in between
 and underneath the hand of god
 you're there and then you're not 

Whether your listening to the newer gods of folk or your listening to Neil 
young play on his old black acoustic guitar, folk is a great thing to get 
wrapped up in. Enjoy. 

Simon

IStillGotMyGuitar


Ukulele or Mandolin?

I recently read an article about Eddie Vedder starting to take an interesting in the ukulele. Though I had obviously thought about it before, this renewed the interest I had in trying to learn a new stringed instrument, other than the guitar and bass guitar. I have considered many times learning the mandolin or ukulele;however, at this point I have yet to pull the trigger on learning another instrument. I have been told that the mandolin is one of the more difficult stringed instruments to play, but it seems to me that once you have the dexterity from playing one stringed instrument learning another would simply be a case of learning new scales and chords. I also know that a baritone ukulele actually is tuned the same way as the top 4 strings on the guitar, so it seems that would be an easy transition for somebody who is seasoned on the 6 string. Does anybody have any input as to which of the 2 I should invest the time and money into? I am interested in the sound of both and am sure I could find a cheap ukulele or cheap mandolin that would suffice for learning purposes, so I would be glad to hear any reasons that I should try picking up one as apposed to the other.

Simon

IStillGotMyGuitar

Gibson or Fender?

In the interest of not having a better topic to speak about, I wanted to briefly discuss/ debate Fender and Gibson. When I started playing in the 5th grade, my parents bought me a Squire Strat complete with a Squire amp and guitar case. I played on it for years and for that time I was completely satisfied with the tone and playability. But then I played my first Gibson. Whether it was an SG or a Les Paul, it seemed to me that Gibson made guitars that Fender couldn’t compete with. Obviously I realize that a Squire is not a fair comparison to an SG or Les Paul;however, I still believe that a Les Paul holds its ground against any Fender model. Even when it comes to acoustic instruments, I still think that there is some “it” factor that Gibson’s possess that make me love them even more. This isn’t to say that I don’t think Fender makes a great product, or obviously that there aren’t any other companies that make great guitars, or that there aren’t cheap electric guitars and cheap acoustic guitars our there that can’t compete with the larger companies;however, I just think that Gibson makes guitars that surpass other company’s quality. Obviously, this is a matter of opinion and I welcome and love to hear from anybody that prefers Fender to Gibson. In all honestly I think that Telecasters are some of the easiest guitars to play that are made;however, Les is more.

Simon

IStillGotMyGuitar

To Acoustic Bass or to Not Acoustic Bass?

I was recently trying to jam with a buddy of mine with an acoustic guitar through he only had his electric bass. Of course, when his bass was not plugged in the acoustic guitar completely drowned it out; however, when he plugged his bass into an amp it was completely overbearing. I mentioned that perhaps he should consider getting an acoustic bass for moments such as that and he told me that in his experience acoustic bass guitars didn’t produce a whole lot of sound and weren’t that good of an investment. However, I have also heard a lot of people say they enjoyed having an acoustic bass and I myself have enjoyed playing them when I got the chance. This leaves me wondering to myself if in the end buying an acoustic bass is something you should plan on doing if you’re going to play a lot of the bass guitar. Does anybody out there have any input into this situation? Does anybody have a lot of experience using an acoustic bass guitar? I’d be very interested to know if anyone out there has experience playing, performing, or recording with an acoustic bass and has advice as to what they think should be considered when making that investment.

Life is your creation

Simon

IStillGotMyGuitar

Suggestions for Tone Development?

I think one of the biggest shortcoming I have in my playing is how under developed my tone is. This is probably because I often play without plugging into an amp. Though it is not a tube, I’ve got a pretty sick amp; however, I find myself always weary of annoying my roommates by noisily banging away at my guitar. I guess I’m more than a little self conscious that they would find my stumbling through practice scales and riffs, or even worse my playing of things that are already established in my repertoire, unbearable and amateur. I know my Les Paul Studio sounds better loud and that my Alvarez would sound much better over an acoustic amplifier;however, like I said early I just haven’t developed a real personal tone. Does anybody out there have any suggestions as to ways I could work on my tone? I’m open to any suggestions whether they have to with simply advising me on tone success you’ve experienced through adjusting levels on your amp or if it has to do with different pedals I should look into adding to my pedal board, which is also embarrassingly underdeveloped.

Life Is Your Creation

Simon

IStillGotMyGuitar

facebook.com/istillgotmyguitar

@gotmyguitar

Welcome To My Blog

What’s up music world, my name is Simon George and I am an aspiring musician from Nashville, TN. I am beginning this Word Press blog to both get more in touch with my fellow musicians and music lovers, as well as to sporadically promote my music site: IStillGotMyGuitar.com. I am 23, was born in Dallas,TX and was raised in music city. I briefly played college football at both Western Kentucky University and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and graduated from UTC in August of 2011 with my BS in Marketing. I have been playing the guitar for around 13 years and also dabble on the bass and ukulele. Though I have come a long way as a musician since I began playing in the 5th grade, I still have much to learn. I believe that the two keys to musical growth are practice and trying to make the musical learning experience as communal as possible. That being said I hope that you might at some point stumble across something on this site worth your while and I hope to enjoy some of your insights in return. Again, if you have the chance check out IStillGotMyGuitar.com the best place on the internet to get acoustic guitar amps, acoustic bass guitars, ukuleles, and of course acoustic guitars. Beautiful instruments at great prices. Also, check out the quick video on this post and you can get to know me a little bit better.

Life Is Your Creation

Simon