This month my guitar progress has been all about one song, well, mainly.
One song that has taken me 25 hours to learn to play all the way through.
To make you aware, I practice between 20 and 25 hours a month on average so this was pretty much one whole month of practice for me.
Did it feel slow going? Yes for sure but I felt like I really got to grips with the song. It is by no means a finished article but it felt so fulfilling once I was able to play it all the way through.
Watch the video below and then I will get into the detail further below. If you don’t want to hear me talk about all the other stuff then.. why not??!! I share my experience and I love to hear about others learning too!
Seriously though, I understand, skip to 1:37 to hear me play Blackbird by The Beatles.
This month of learning went through Christmas and crossed over into the new year.
There were times when I didn’t have a guitar to hand and was just enjoying my time off work with my young family. I have two daughters, one who was just turning one over this period and the other who was very close to 4. This means my hands were full but in a great way, I always have fun with them and I cherish the time we get together, although it can be frustrating haha.
This meant that guitar playing took a little bit of a back seat but I did do a lot of practice leading up to Christmas and learning Blackbird by The Beatles was actually a real pleasure.
Yes, it was slow, in fact, I was just following bar by bar from a video, you can see the video I learned from below.
This meant it was slow but accurate (I hope) and the overall feeling of accomplishment I got from having learned a song that appeared so difficult at the start is not only rewarding but also fills me with confidence.
Confidence that I can go on and learn other challenging songs. In fact, I think choosing to learn a difficult song for the level you are at is an important part of improving. I have talked about this before in my other guitar progress blog updates and I used the term ‘Project Song’. I don’t think it should be your sole focus because it is too hard it may discourage you from picking the guitar up which is the last thing we want to do right?
However, as a way to supplement your progress and show you that you are more capable than you realize then it is a fantastic way to move forward.
I talk more about this in my article here How Long Does It Take To Learn A Guitar Song? A Guide For Beginners but suffice to say techniques and timing are just a few things that improve.
What Did Santa Bring Me?
It was slim pickings from Santa, unlike his waistline, this Christmas but I did get a Harmonica. It is a good quality harmonica in the Key of G, this one here if you are interested. I wanted this so I could learn how to play Heart of Gold and accompany my guitar playing. If you didn’t check it out I learned this in month 6 (click here to see) as I really like some Neil Young songs and also some James Taylor old stuff.
Anyway, it was a cool present and I am always grateful for a present as I am at the ‘bottom of the food chain’ when it comes to presents as I have a wife and two young daughters (I say this in jest just in case it isn’t obvious haha, although can you hear those violins playing??).
I still dream of an electric guitar though and I have plans to get one but I am one of these people who like to save money for stuff rather than getting it with credit. I feel like I have earned it more then and I place more value on it. I am not saying this is a better way but just that this is the way my mind operates.
As an aside, I have written an article about Guitar Finance because I wanted to help those that use it. I compared all the top guitar retailers in the USA and the finance deals they offer and their pros and cons. This included those with bad credit, deals with no credit check and the amounts you could borrow.
There are some excellent deals to be had you just need to be sure you are getting the best you can.If you are in the market for a new guitar and will use finance then I urge you to check it out. It will literally save you hundreds of dollars between the best and worst deals. You can read it here Best Guitar Financing.
Guaranteed and Stairway To Heaven
I have also just started to learn Guaranteed by Eddie Vedder from Pearl Jam. It comes from a film that I really enjoyed many years ago called Into the Wild and he did a whole soundtrack for it. There are so many songs on that album that I really enjoy but this was one of the more ‘easy’ songs to learn that had a fingerpicking element in it.
I have in no way, shape or form learned the song but I have started and that is the most important part.
You can see what I have learned in the time-stamped video below:
Oh, and if you don’t know the song, here it is, I love the lyrics and I often listen to the album.
On top of these two, there is one more that I am planning to learn and that is the ‘forbidden song’ the song that is banned worldwide in guitar stores due to being overplayed.
I really like the song though and that is Stairway to Heaven by Pink Floyd. I am just trying to find a nice video tutorial though as I find more and more that I like to learn this way as I can see the nuances and finger movement that you just can’t get from a TAB or some notes.
The one I think I will learn it from is Marty Schwartz, “Heeeey What’s up to you guys…”, he has split it into two videos so I look forward to that one.
Anyway, that is it from month 7. If you are learning yourself, maybe you got a guitar at Christmas and you are approaching the 2-month mark, don’t give up!!! the best is yet to come and if you don’t believe me check out my others guitar progress videos below.
If that doesn’t work then check out my Top 10 Simple Acoustic Guitar Songs For Beginners, it has everything from solos, to fingerstyle, strumming, one finger songs and blues. A little bit of everything that I curated from my months of learning but all very easy to play to help give you confidence that you can get better. Check it out, it is very popular and receiving a lot of interest from Pinterest right now.
What Next? 8 Month Guitar Progress Breakdown
I hope you can join me on my journey, so if you would like to keep updated then please subscribe to my YouTube Channel here and sign up for my email updates here. I won’t spam you, only provide tips and recommendations along with updates on my progress.
I would love to hear from any of you learning to play guitar and if you have any questions, comments or want to tell me how you are getting on then please leave them in the comments section below. I will do my best to answer them and provide any help, feedback, and encouragement I can.
All the best, good luck on your guitar journey and don’t forget to check out my other guitar progress posts below.
Look forward to seeing you there.
Guitar Progress Posts
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