Today is a NGD so I figured I may as well start a learning log to share it.
I started playing guitar “again” in mid October last year. I had done a very small amount as a teenager (basically a handful of Nirvana songs as a 15 year old), played the drums for about 7 years from 12 to 19. Hadn’t done anything musical in 20 years - I’m now 40. If you want to read a bit more about that story it’s in my introduction at Hi, James from Brisbane, Australia.
It’s clear to say I’m obsessed. I play guitar every day. Work, looking after the kids, responsibility… they all get in the way of playing guitar.
I started out on a Yamaha F310P. Think: the cheapest Yamaha acoustic that comes in a starter kit. And a Squier Affinity HSS Strat with a flame maple top.
Here’s the strat:
It’s a Squier but plays really well. I set it up with advice from YouTube & fender’s guides, and the feel is actually great. I borrowed my mate’s Gibson Les Paul so I’m fortunate enough to know what a quality guitar feels like. However the Squier still does SOUND like a Squier.
I set some goals for myself before I was allowed to get a new guitar.
- Play Californication all the way through at full tempo (excluding solo)
- Playing Killing In the Name Of
- Learn a Jack Johnson song
Well I did all three, so I bought a new guitar. I figured it doesn’t make sense to go from a starter to a midrange, may as well get something good so I don’t have to upgrade again.
My cheapo Yamaha acoustic served me well but I’ve just, today, bought a Maton SRS70C. This is a made in Australia, solid wood guitar. I tested out loads of guitars and to me this sounded and felt the best to play. Wow, does it feel amazing. My Yamaha is in the background of the shot with all 3 guitars.
As far as other gear, I have a Fender Mustang LT25 amp and Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 interface for the PC hookup.
Where I’m up to: the end of Grade 2. Currently doing consolidation, focusing on move basslines. Slash chords.
I’ve probably got about 20+ songs I’ve learned so far, but the ones I’m working on perfecting now are:
Sunny Afternoon by the Kinks
Handle with Care by Travelling Wilburys
Flake by Jack Johnson
In chronological order (last updated 5th June 2022):
Wish You Were Here - Pink Floyd March 2022
Big Me - Foo Fighters March 2022, updated April 2022
Basket Case - Green Day (one take) March 2022
Hallelujah - Leonard Cohen, fingerpicked cover March 2022
12 bar blues improv April 2022
Elderly Woman Behind the Counter in a Small Town - Pearl Jam April 2022
Hurt - Johnny Cash/NiN April 2022
Down in a Hole - Alice in Chains Live at JG OM8, May 2022
Pearl Jam - Just Breathe progress video May 2022
I’m hoping to do regular recording, if for no other reason that to track my progress and share.