Hobart’s Learning Log

I recieved a message today stating that I’m officially a “member” of the community. So, I suppose it’s time for me to start my learning log.

Here is my introduction if you are interested in how I got here.

Squier Classic Vibe '70s Telecaster Custom
Blackstar Debut 15e
I had a Fender Mustang Micro, but I made the mistake of leaving it sitting on my amp and the pooch claimed it as a chew toy :dog:
Polytune Clip
Focusrite Scarlett 2i2

Short Term Goal
Right now I just want to learn the fundamentals and see where it takes me.

Long Term Goal
I didn’t really have any long term goals when I started this journey. As I’ve progressed through Grade 1, I find myself more interested in learning techniques than memorizing songs. I believe I would ultimately like to focus on improvisation. We’ll see how my goals might change as I make my way through the courses.

Grade 1 Progress

  • Module 1 — Completed
  • Module 2 — Completed
  • Module 3 — Completed
  • Module 4 — Completed
  • Module 5 — Completed
  • Module 6 — Completed
  • Module 7 — Completed

Passing Grade 1

#1 You should be able to tune your guitar with a tuner.
I was actually doing this before starting the course.

#2 Memorize and play the 8 essential beginner chords on the guitar.
I believe I am doing well with chord perfect on all 8 chords and I can do them in any order.

#3 Play 30 chord changes in 1 minute.
I am able to 40 -50 on most combinations, and 60 on a few such as E to D.

#4 Play The Old Faithful strumming pattern consistently at 80 beats per minute.
80 bpm is not problem. I typically practice at 112 because that is the tempo of my chosen performance song. I occasionally go offbeat, but I feel I’m doing fairly well at this tempo. Doing it with chord changes is where I begin to fumble.

#5 Memorize 5 easy songs.
This is where I currently stand:

  • Song #1: Tide is High by Blondie
    Memorized and can play with very few mistakes.

  • Song #2: Hey Joe by Jimi Hendrix
    I can play this song with a backing track and not looking at the app. I am using D D DUD (1 2 3&4) as my strumming pattern.

  • Song #3: Louie, Louie by The Kingsmen
    I can play this from memory at a tempo of 100bpm. I make too many mistake at the song’s normal 125bpm. My strumming pattern is DUD D D (1&2 3 4).

  • Song #4: Chocolate Jesus by Tom Waits
    My most difficult choice. I chose this song because it includes Am and Dm to round out all the chords I’ve learned. I can play it fairly well with basic straight strums while using the app, but I’m having a difficult time memorizing it.

  • Song #5: Last Kiss by Pearl Jam
    I chose this as my performance song because it’s fun to play and was pretty easy to learn. I can play it okay with a backing track, not using the app, but I’m still making too many mistakes to post it as my AVOYP. Hoping to do this by end of this year — next week.

Updated December 28, 2022

I’ve posted my first AVOYP and will be moving on from Grade 1 while continuing to work on my trouble areas.
Last Kiss by Pearl Jam, Grade 1 AVOYP

January 01, 2023
I’ve decided not to move on to Grade 2 just yet. Instead, I will spend several weeks on the following:


That’s a great start. You are well on your way.

Hi Howard,
On al roll,…Have fun :sunglasses:

Hi Howard. You learn the chords, you learn the strumming patterns and the ultimate exercise is putting them together in a song. Keep enjoying your guitar learning.

Good idea to start the log and sounds like you are doing well, making steady progress, Howard. Keep doing what you are doing!

Hi Howard, seem as if you are making good progress! Your songs repertoire will build up with time… but it takes time. Nothing to worry about. Keep on and enjoy your path through the course!

Wonderful document of your progress to date.