Who? Me?

The personalization of one’s music experience is required.What I am talking about is making the music you play about you.

Many of us have spent way too much time working on tunes or technical skills that we believe will be impressive to others.I do it as much as anyone else.I may even engage in this silliness more than average because of the ingrained belief I have that I should play what others want to hear.Something about better musical employment is usually attached to this belief.

It is a lie!

Think about some famous musicians and their sound: Angus Young, Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, Wes Montgomery, Steve Vai, Joe Satriani, Eddie Van Halen, B.B. King, Carlos Santana, Eric Johnson, Chuck Berry, Buddy Guy, Joe Pass, Kenny Burrell, Barney Kessel, and many others.

I have included some musicians that some of you have may not have heard of, because I wanted to give you a chance to hear them.These musicians sound only like themselves and are likely to be recognized within seconds of hearing them play.

I have a couple of posts of my playing that I believe represent my ‘Sound’.Listen here, watch here.

Not that I compare to those above.

Thanks,

-Justin

P.S.Here’s a fun little quiz: Which Famous Guitarist Are You?

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Be a Musician!

This weekend, my family and I went camping in Rockbridge County.It was very nice to get into nature and relax a bit.It is surprising how green everything is in a valley.

Anyway, there was a man one site over who was playing guitar and singing for a couple of hours in the evening.While listening to him, I remembered again why we often choose to play music, and that is to simply play songs.

Sometimes we become too involved with technical stuff and forget to learn enough tunes.

Then again, being out in the woods with no electricity eliminates a few ‘Time-Suckers’ that often keep us from enjoying the basics of life.

Like enough sleep.

-Justin

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Performance Videos

I have made a few performance videos today that would like to share with you.If any of you have videos of yourselves playing; share them.The nice thing about videos is that they are just like any other recording, if you do not like the ‘Take’, just delete it and make another one.

I will send you to my YouTube page where you can see all of my videos in case you missed any of them.I would really appreciate some comments and questions regarding them.Whatever you want to ask is fine and welcome.

Enjoy,

-Justin

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Enough Practice

I know that I have written frequently on the subject of practice, but I have noticed that some students are not getting the point.

What is enough practice time?Ten minutes per day? One hour? Four Hours? Eight Hours?

How many repetitions should we have before moving to something else during our practice time? One time each practice session? Ten times? One hundred times?

I usually define ‘enough practice’ as: ‘working on something enough to know that you are better than when you started the session’.Reaching this goal does not need to take a long time.It does, however, take a lot of repetition. Most students should be working on the exercise in the following video.Use this video to warm-up with each day and see what a difference it makes after one week.

If you are not quick enough to play the later sections, you can play at your pace all the way through.The fretting hand only goes faster at the end.All of the other speed changes are with the picking hand.

(I engage in meditative/trance practice; I’ll explain later.)

For the beginner, I suggest just a few minutes each day.In the beginning, the progress is not very musical, so limiting practice time keeps folks from getting too discouraged.

When I start something new with a student, very often the student will stop practicing everything else.Until practicing all of your material takes more than one hour; you have no reason to leave something out of your practice time.

I am considering creating a seven part video series showing me practicing for one hour.This would give you some ideas on what you could accomplish in one hour’s time.Let me know what you think of this idea.

-Justin

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