JK's learning log

Making good steady progress JK. Keep it going, keep it focused !

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Good stuff JK seems like you know what to do and how to do it so keep on going! On the missing lessons - perhaps worth having a look at old Intermediate course to fill out the gaps (if it’s still available somewhere)?

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Hi JK, interesting read as always, you progress a lot faster than me… so congratulations, you did a good job within the last year. When I don’t believe one thing, it would be :joy: :wink::

You have for sure! And I hope one of them is to stay close to the community!
So, have a good time and enjoy your next year!

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Your reflections are a good reflecting on a good year, JK. Lots of progress and smart, disciplined approach to continue.

I think you singing is more of an issue to you than it is to us, listening. Keep up with DYV, it delivered unimagined results for me.

What’s a song? What a question. A piece of music that starts, finishes, and conveys something to a listener. I’d encourage you to be open to those lyrics and fragments somehow coming together. No need to frame melody as something you must sit down down and compose note for note on the guitar. Play some chords and just sing the lyrics, see what happens.

And of course, no need to feel the absolute need to have lyrics in your composition. With Jeff Beck being (sadly) front and centre, you may have an idea for an instrumental. I had an idea and it did become an instrumental song, but maybe that was shared before you joined the Community.

Just be open and follow the muse when she comes knocking.

Look forward to following progress in 2023!


Great read JK! As i also inch slowly toward the intermediate grades I feel like our paths are quite similar and only different in what we choose to spend practice time on. It’s always an interesting read to see where you are and how it mirrors my own experience experiences.

You should record the songs sans solos. That’s what I’ve decided to do. The sound won’t be exactly the same but with drums, bass, and sometimes vocals in backing tracks it’ll def sound like the song and worth pursuing in my opinion. Not really great examples but I recorded every rose has its thorn and in bloom without their solos and they still sound aight (not my guitar playing but the overall track, lol)

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Always so demanding Rogier! :rofl: Yeah I can record greensleeves again, it’s been out of my practice routine for a long time but I end up playing it once a month or so when I’m sitting around with the acoustic running through things I like to play from memory. I’ll do a few warm up goes through so I remember it properly and then record it. I guess I’d add it to my original greensleeves post to raise that zombie from the dead?

Oh… and where are your AVOYPs, haven’t seen one of those for a while? :smiling_imp:

Thank you fine sir.

This is a really good idea. I hunted around and yes it’s still there, it makes sense to go through that first. It’s there as intermediate foundation 1 and 2. The current grade 4 intermediate course looks incomplete, I’ll mix them together.

Thanks Andrea, might be a translation thing with the setting goals stuff - I mean the year ahead :wink:.

And it’s an issue for my immediate family too, all great singers (wife and kids). I think at least 2 of them might have perfect pitch, not to name a note, but they can sing really well, on key without even a backing track. Sadly my wife and eldest daughter haven’t wanted to record a video together (yet) - they don’t want to put themselves on youtube.

You latched on to my most navelly of navel gazing :wink:. Is it a song when I play it through with no lyrics… or write some lyrics down, or record it, so I remember what it is, rather than have it change a bit each time? I feel like it needs some degree of permanence to become a song and not a musical theme I repeat. I’ve found that the bits and pieces I work on have evolved over time as well.

Yeah I feel our paths are quite similar. I started playing a couple of months before you but we joined the community around the same time. And it’s wild what seemed like a huge time difference at the start, a couple of months, becomes insignificant as time goes on.

Okay, you’ve convinced me, I’ll record more rock songs :rofl:


Great update my friend. You must be happy with how far you have come in 2022. And I’m expecting it’s only going to get better in 2023 with the dedication and determination that you put into it.

Isn’t that whats it’s all about though? To transcribe songs that you actually like?

Rhythm is king and we all know you have got a great sense of timing. I’ll be interested in listening to your rock repetiore.

That sounds like a great idea to me. I saw your challenge post the other day but hadn’t had a chance yet to write a proper response. You’re coming along very well mate. The way you are going it won’t be long before your belting out those solos.

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:joy: I also meant the year 2023… Couldn’t believe that you don’t have concrete goals. You always seem very well organized and focused…

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Hi JK, thanks for this update, really cool to hear your thoughts on where you’re at/planning to go. :sunglasses::+1:
I did a deep dive back through your LL (as for some reason I had missed it till now?! :thinking: :joy:) and such a great read and record of your progress! The phrase “duck to water” springs to mind when seeing how quickly you became proficient with the fundamentals! I also admire your courage for continuing to stretch outside your comfort zone particularly with singing and live performing. These are perhaps the biggest hurdles for aspiring guitarists to overcome (I certainly haven’t yet! :joy:) and to have tackled both (together multiple times!) within such a short time frame is a monumental feat to be exceptionally proud of :clap: :clap: :clap:
I know you mentioned about starting the ear training and theory courses further up - did you delve into those? I haven’t started the former yet but have been enjoying the latter. It has certainly helped with the transcribing project I’m tackling at the mo (which was a big factor in why I started that course in the first place :sweat_smile: ).
Anyway, all the best mate! Can’t wait to see more updates/AVOYPs from you soon! :metal:

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You’d think so, plenty of songs I’ve never heard to transcribe in grade 3 :wink:. Thanks for checking out the update James. And the 321 challenge. You should give it a go!

My bluffing game is strong, then! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Ah… I saw your post to sign up for the audience again for the next OM. I was tempted to poke you and say you should be signing up to perform at the next one… it’s a pretty safe place to do it. So here’s the poke! :point_right:

Reading through the LL, you would have read about the first time I did it, sweaty hands and anxious. It was worth it, it’s much easier now. Do it Jeff! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:. Your playing is better than mine, so there’s no excuse there.

Ear training and theory courses, I didn’t get very far before diverting. I got two lessons into the ear training introduction where Justin started talking about just figuring out melodies like “happy birthday” and I went - ugh - not because of the subject matter, but because I suck at remembering vocal melodies. I figured the grade 3 transcribing is my ear training for now.

Similar with theory. I got up to grade 3 there, but only 8 lessons into it. Learned the major scale position 1 (good), but then it got onto stuff about “key signatures” on musical notation and “key signature tricks”, as well as “double sharps, double flats, naturals”… and I thought, this is not for me now. So I lost interest very quickly.

I’ll probably get back into both, but more likely ear training. I use justin’s interval ear trainer app sometimes.



I’ll come up with one I think it will be oke to share…I wanted to Fingerstyle Yesterday,…but I just can’t keep playing it half smoothly :grimacing:,…maybe try my best with Greensleeves :roll_eyes:


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Good progress JK and I suspect you have a “broader” base knowledge than I personally do (I’ve never really bothered with transcribing).

Personally I wouldn’t worry too much about solo’s in the context of a song BUT I would stick at it as it may be useful later on (it’s something I regret not picking up earlier). One of the reasons it’s not particularly essential is if you’re playing the solo you’re playing lead so you’d be playing something to compliment the rhythm guitar (which is generally playing the chords). For a solo to sound good you need the background rhythm, bass, drums etc. A solo on it’s can sound very much empty. A simple way of working around this is simply to play the solo section as the rhythm part (which is usually just combination of verse/chorus chords). It’s what I do for most of my songs.

The negative to my approach is that it then becomes harder to learn the full rhythm& solo when you really want to take it to the next step. I can have the rhythm down for a song in 1-2 days max BUT a solo! well that can take a week or much more. Maybe that’s just the way it is and hopefully it’ll become quicker. My biggest challenge is combining rhythm, singing and solo. It’s a little easier if there is a short instrumental break before the solo but still tricky.

If you’re confidently playing barre chords that’s a big milestone there are lots of amateur players who struggle with this and I myself took years to get this to a point where I wasn’t thinking about it and playing them as easily as if they open chords.

You’re making great progress and have got a decent voice…confidence and practice is all that’s needed.


Hi Jk, while reading
your update and other posts of yours I happened to think how at the opposites we are. You have a “natural” great sense of Rhythm, which I have not…nah it might not be natural, you said you practiced it a lot as a kid…and as regards me I’m quite confident with my singing, (which you are not) and …nah it’s not natural I “practiced” it a lot! Now what I’m trying to say is that I learnt to be confident in the learning process and in myself as regards Rhythm and what I expect from you is that your find your confidence in your singing ability and in your ability to detect mistakes and turn them into learning opportunities. Sometimes it’s really all about this.

Why!?! I’ve always had same Andrea’s impression!


Hey JK,

Great update mate. Been a sensational first year for you. Really has
You’ve just been on the constant, rapid improve since you started, and it shows.

Don’t let the singing stress you out too much. You’re much better than you think.

Plus, once you start ripping a few solos and tearing up some improv this year in the intermediate stuff, you never know - you might just get hooked and put the singing on the backburner :crazy_face:

All the best
Cheers Shane

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:rofl: :rofl: :rofl: I suspected I might get that :joy:

Fair enough mate! I totally understand, up until now I have felt exactly the same :sweat_smile: I’m a big advocate for doing what you find inspiring. I’ve only really got stuck into it now as I can see directly how it’s helping me with what I’m working on at the moment but otherwise I would unlikely switch my precious practice time to theory! :joy: It’s always sitting there waiting for if/when it makes sense to dive in :wink:


Hi JK, your progress so far has been amazing. I’m sometimes wondering whether your days have more than 24 hours - or do you simply need less sleep and use the additional spare time for practicing :smiley:?
Keep up the great work :guitar::star_struck:

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Good advice Jason, thanks. It always feels like I haven’t really “done” a song if I can’t do the solo, but it does take soooo long to learn vs learning the chords. So probably just a thing for the rare song that I want to take all the way.

It does seem that way! I’ve struggled and struggled with voice stuff, or even trying to work out notes by ear when transcribing or even trying to tune by ear. Rhythm vs melody sections :wink:

I definitely spend a lot of time playing, but organised… probably less than half my practice sessions are structured. I saw your practice notebook you posted - now THAT is organised!

Haha, that’s what I keep doing! Stopping the singing practice and trying to improve my guitar playing, it’s much for satisfying! Thanks for the kudos Shane.

It’s probably the less sleep thing :wink:. Everyone’s lives are structured differently I guess, I work quite close to home and don’t watch much TV, hardly play any video games these days… so once the kids are in bed, it’s guitar time.


So, this might be the explanation. My kids are night owls and go to bed the same time I do - and we wake up together, as well (as I’m no early bird at all :see_no_evil:…).

In about 10 years or so, when they won’t need me that much, this will get better :sweat_smile:.


It’s great that you have such opportunity to play late, never managed to get past 21.00 :slight_smile: .


Hi JK, it looks you have a busy guitar year ahead. Keep working on that the way you are. It’s working.

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