Dave G's Learning Log

Each song for the ‘songbook’ format, I’ll either mark up as:

  • :o2: Planning - on my ‘to do’ list, including the dreamers.
  • :ballot_box_with_check: Practising - usually played in the past during or supporting Justin’s course.
  • :white_check_mark: Playing - can play and sing these, at home, no pressure on most attempts.
  • :rocket: Performing - have performed a version at an open mic and it not be a total disaster.
  • :star: Perfected? - not sure about this one, was thinking maybe an edited video with guitar and vocals performed separately, multiple takes to ensure a ‘best I can do’ presentation. Not sure if I really need this, probably happy with reaching the performance point to be honest. We’ll see.

:o2: Eruption - Van Halen
Well not all of it
:o2: Brothers in Arms - Dire Straits
Justin’s lesson: https://www.justinguitar.com/songs/dire-straits-brothers-in-arms-chords-tabs-guitar-lesson-st-342
Backing track: Brothers in Arms - Dire Straits - Custom Backing Track - Karaoke Version
:o2: Why Worry - Dire Straits
:o2: Babe I’m Gonna Leave You - Led Zeppelin
:o2: Good Times bad Times - Led Zeppelin
:o2: White Room - Cream
:o2: Plug In Baby - Muse
:o2: Unintended - Muse
:o2: Do You Remember the First Time - Pulp
:o2: Take Me to Church - Hozier
:o2: Atlas - Coldplay
:o2: Bring Me to Life - Evanesence
Dreamer Duo
:o2: Enjoy the Silence - Lacuna Coil
7 String!
Dreamer Duo
:o2: Black Hole Sun - Sound Garden
:o2: Bring it on Down - Oasis
:o2: Tuyo - Rodrigo Amarante

:ballot_box_with_check: Tardei - Rodrigo Amarante
:ballot_box_with_check: Mon Nom - Rodrigo Amarante
A stretchy one
:ballot_box_with_check: Paint it Black - Rolling Stones
:ballot_box_with_check: Drive - REM
:ballot_box_with_check: What’s the Frequency Kenneth - REM
:ballot_box_with_check: Falling Down - Oasis
:ballot_box_with_check: Live Forever - Oasis
:ballot_box_with_check: Champagne Supernova - Oasis
:ballot_box_with_check: One - U2
:ballot_box_with_check: The Chain - Fleetwood Mac
Dreamer Duo
:ballot_box_with_check: A Million Dreams -P!nk
Dreamer Duo
:ballot_box_with_check: What’s Up - 4 Non Blondes
First Transcription
Jam Track
:ballot_box_with_check: Whiskey in the Jar - Metallica
:ballot_box_with_check: Cocaine - JJ Cale
With loop of main riff for pentatonic solo
Jam Track
:ballot_box_with_check: Creep - Radiohead
:ballot_box_with_check: The Battle of Evermore - Led Zeppelin
Jam Track

:white_check_mark: Child in Time - Deep Purple
Looper and Solo mix in progress

:rocket: Smoke on the Water - Deep Purple
:rocket: Ain’t Talkin 'Bout Love - Van Halen
:rocket: Nothing Else Matters - Metallica
:rocket: Cigarettes and Alcohol - Oasis
:rocket: Don’t Look Back in Anger - Oasis
:rocket: Cast no Shadow - Oasis
:rocket: Wonderwall - Oasis
:rocket: Mad World - Gary Jules
:rocket: One Day Like This - Elbow
:rocket: Hotel California - Eagles
:rocket: Running to Stand Still - U2
:rocket: Nobody Knows You - Blackberry Smoke

As I work on any of the above I’ll pick some highlights and share over on AVOYP.

Previously ……

OK, so just posted in the AVOYP area

… this will be my last ‘show off’ one, I’m heading back to grade 2 beginner and although been playing a while I am ‘missing’ some of the basics, I noticed a few on here are singing already too so might take the opportunity to start posting some songs with the added dimension of singing along!

I’ve noticed on many a trip down the Youtube rabbit hole that guitar channels can be very specific and while being awesome at guitar is well, awesome, you have to be pretty damn good to get away with not singing, while on the other hand a few simple chords and a well known song may well be more useful…in the pursuit of fun times :slight_smile:

At the moment, I’m on a tone quest. I started on the acoustic and liked the simplicity, but I’m after a warmer tone from the electric. I’m into Rodrigo Amarante at the moment (Narcos Theme Tune and ,wow, Cavalo Album) and … OK maybe one more show off video to show the progress there.

Apart from the singing, I would like to get to grips with the lead guitar. I’ve dipped in and out of the blues lead modules in the past, but did so having skipped the blues rhythm modules so aim to take my time and do things properly this time.

Hopefully, I will be able to help out others in the earlier modules as I revisit them…


Good stuff Dave, look forward to more from you.

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Sounds like a good plan Dave and from what I’ve just heard in your recording, you’re succeeding in your tone quest.

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Well made plan, Dave, and after reading Maggie’s reply I must hurry on over to AVOYP :grin:

I think playing and singing is very much about your own personal aspirations. And I think fair to say most of us here post on YT as a means to share with the Community, rather than with the serious intent to be a YTer purposefully driving to increase subscribers, views, and likes. So if singing appeals to you go for it, if you just want to play that’s fine too.

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@DavidP All videos are definitely unlisted :scream:


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By all means, sing, David! The only way to improve your singing is to do it. I feel I can comment fairly as my vocals can be cringeworthy at times, but I sure have more fun when I sing and play than just playing.


You make a really good point! I think it is probably especially true for people at my level where with just chords it may not sound like much of a song, but singing with the chords definitely makes it a song. Of course, I’m not ready to go there yet. :slight_smile:

Update 1:

Ok, so I ‘need to’ get back on track with the Justin modules. I initially joined the forum to focus on Justin’s course, along comes an open mic and I spend 3 weeks on two songs!

Never mind, enjoyed the ride and would not have thought I would be singing along with the guitar so soon.

P.S. just got around to reading the comments transcript from open mic night, thanks all for the kind words.


I’ve got a couple of songs in mind for the next open mic, one new and one I’ve been playing a while, but it’s all over the neck, so initial attempts to sing along were a struggle. Will see how that goes….

Will be heading over to Chris Liege’s singing course, which I’ve already signed up for a while ago, the mic night has now given me the confidence to give the singing a serious go, hope he has some modules on nerves :flushed:

And am determined to spend some time back in the modules, Clint’s sweet performance has reminded me I would like to get to grips with some blues licks too…

I can’t thank everyone enough involved for organising the open mic events, wow what an opportunity it provides, so grateful.

For anyone else, it’s such a safe space, don’t hesitate to sign up, whatever level you are at.
You can always ask for your section not to be posted to YouTube, but to perform on the night is an experience you should grasp with both hands!

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Dave, I think mastering the nerves comes in two ways.

Firstly and simply, the more frequently you do it, the more comfortable you will become, and you’ll find that nerves become more of a positive nervous energy. In Toastmasters we use to talk about the butterflies flying in formation.

Secondly, maybe more challenging, is your own mindset, expectations, and inner dialogue. You can set yourself up for success or make the experience more nerve-wracking based on this. For example, I am at peace with making mistakes. I step up to play as well as I can and understand at my current play-grade and level of experience, I will be somewhat inconsistent in the moment. So I hold no anxiety associated with delivering a flawless performance, which I think leads overall to better performances.


Update 2:

Morning after the night before (Open Mic 8).

Again what a great experience despite of technical issues. Managed to unplug Digital Interface USB cable from Laptop just before going live!

Note to self: Do a quick sound check in before heading over to playing area when you’re up. And if the Mod offers to skip onto someone else while you sort yourself out, take up the offer because you can’t play well while all flustered.

Going Forward, paying back

  1. I definitely need to commit to more module practice.
  2. I would like to give back a little to the community.

As there are a great number of guitarists on here with vastly more experience than myself I always feel like a bit of an imposter offering guitar advice to new users. What I have noticed though is that there aren’t many experienced mods that are using the app / practice schedule on the website and as a result there are a few queries that go unanswered.

So, I have got the app, cleared my practice schedule on the website and will give the early modules a revisit (which I was intending to do anyway, but find myself easily distracted and wandering off) both through the app and website. That way I may be able to offer a bit of help to new users as their questions pop up on here.

I may log my progress over on the technical issues / feedback section too.

To demo the app, I will commit to performing one of the tracks ‘Karaoke style’ on the next open mic. - I’ve spotted Radioactive by Imagine Dragons on there already. but just the one song for next time, I need to get those practice modules done more routinely.

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Despite the sound glitch, you did very well last night Dave. And yes those last minute dramas really add to the nerves but you handle it well regardless. :+1:

Regards App advice, very commendable. A lot of “old times” went through the Classic BC on the web site, as the App is still relatively new. Some of us, me included, have gone through the online modules and caught up on a lot of the new material that’s been added but not the app itself. I think in time there will be a larger core of folks, like yourself, who have learnt that way and better placed to share their experiences. Good of you to offer your support to the newer users.


You did a great job last night, Dave, enjoyed both your songs.

Commend the Community Spirit to explore the App and contribute to helping folk with queries.

Update 3

Just an update on my thoughts for now.

Inspired by @jkahn and @alexisduprey I’m going to try a ‘songbook’ approach for a while.

I’ve tried my best to talk myself into strictly practicing by following Justin’s modules - but it just won’t stick. Back to personality types again I guess, my mind likes to wander and that’s how I find I progress the most successfully with most things.

I did try the app for a while and think that it is the perfect tool for beginning your journey with Justin. However, my soul resists the structure.

Going forward I’m just dipping into the areas I’m interested in, back to the blues lead modules at the moment.

Blues Lead

So my thoughts on this are:

  • Learn Position 1 and Position 4 of the minor pentatonic.
  • Milk those two positions for everything they’ve got - including learning the (positional) associated major pentatonic shapes.

My rationale for this is linked to me participating in jam sessions that sometimes take place after the open mics I attend. Position 1 and 4 have root notes on the low E and A strings, I know the notes along these pretty well. So, some one shouts up “OK, we’re in the key of C for this one, I can either jump onto the minor A pentatonic and see if that works or, using the same shape and position, target the C root notes and play it as the C major pentatonic - eventually being able to switch between the two. It seems to be working at the moment so I’m sticking to it. I know Justin focuses more on the major scales first now but I like the simplicity of the pentatonics (for now).

I do have Justin’s blues licks app, so plenty of mileage in that along with the blues lead modules.

To that end, I’ll focus on completing a few of the ‘ guitar challenges’ over in AVOYP.

Learn Songs, Learn Songs, Learn Songs

So firstly linked to the above blues lead, I’m going to have a go at Brothers In Arms - Dire Straits. In the past I’ve almost exclusively focused on rhythm guitar ignoring solos along the way and would like to do a bit of work in this area, so it will be backing track and full focus on the lead.

Other than that I will be trying to consolidate the songs I’ve been learning for the last year or so. Similar to the ‘songbook’ format, I’ll either mark up as:

  • :o2: Planning - on my ‘to do’ list, including the dreamers.
  • :ballot_box_with_check: Practicing - usually played in the past during or supporting Justin’s course.
  • :white_check_mark: Playing - can play and sing the song through, at home, no pressure on most attempts.
  • :rocket: Performing - have performed a version at an open mic and it not be a total disaster.
  • :star: Perfected? - not sure about this one, was thinking maybe an edited video with guitar and vocals performed separately, multiple takes to ensure a ‘best I can do’ presentation. Not sure if I really need this, probably happy with reaching the performance point to be honest. We’ll see.

So I’ll start a single thread over in AVOYP and link to each song as and when. I’m not planning to post every bit of everything but enough variety over the various learning stages maybe of interest to some?

I’ll also post some bits and bobs around gear and tone. You’ve asked for it but I’ve been a bit unsure how to present it. I was thinking a video tour but don’t want to have to subtitle it :roll_eyes:

I’m going to go through the drum backing track process as well. It won’t be a tutorial as such, just my process of knocking up drum tracks which are customisable for those who like to skip solos or tricky bits of songs etc.

Other than that, just going to tone it back a notch. I’ve been burning the candle at both ends trying to learn song after song in order to keep the open mics fresh. There’s been a bit of a let up that way for now, the small venue regular open mic has been paused until the spring and the other is only on fortnightly and most folk there have only heard one or two of my renditions, so hence an opportunity to consolidate a bit.

…next stop, AVOYP…


Hey Dave, pretty cool you’re looking at doing a songbook thing too with your own flavour on it. Keen to see what comes out! I’m always impressed by your playing.

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Sounds like you have a good handle on your direction and how to approach progressing, Dave.

I know what you mean about OMs … quite easy to become absorbed by that, learning songs and rehearsing to the exclusions of all else. (speaking for myself here).

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Great update, Dave! Some really cool plans you have and lots of takeaways for me to consider with my practice as well. Your performances already achieve such a high level, so doing a consolidation of some areas will surely enhance that further. Can’t wait to see the fruits of this in AVOYPs! :metal::sunglasses:

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Very cool spin on the songbook thing Dave! Can’t wait to see the AVOYPs that you’re cooking up.

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Songbook added to top post :point_up_2: Dave G's Learning Log

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