Well, everyone else seems to be doing this, so here goes.
I waited 50 years to buy my first guitar, so at 63.5 I bought my Squier Bullet at Amazon on November 29, 2022. This was a few days after my husband bought his first bass. He convinced me to get an electric and not an acoustic like I always figured I’d get.
So here I am sitting with just a guitar, no amp, no strap, no picks till DH gave me the picks that came with his bass. Discovered I could hear the strings without an amp. Who knew? Apparently, not me. What now? So, I went searching on the web. Found one site, “learned” the E and Em chord, but that site was just one YouTube video of really dry stuff, after another, felt like I was spinning my wheels.
Somewhere in the middle of December found Justin’s song app, tried the free first course on my phone. Learned the A and D chords, played the 3 included karaoke songs though I’ve never heard them before, and I didn’t really like them that much over the next few days and started building up callouses. Holidays arrive, my younger sister and entourage arrive for 3 weeks, and right after Christmas hubby and I come down with covid. Too sick to do anything for weeks, lost all my callouses, finally in mid-January I try the free first course app again… and really, I’m not much of an app person, phone is such a tiny screen, and I became rather discouraged besides having a nagging cough for-like-ever.
At some point it occurred to me to try the web again and I found JustinGuitar.com. Officially joined the community in the last week of January, started up again with Module 0, 1 and 2. I like his method of teaching! It took me a while but I also figured out how to use the Practice Assistant with some help from the Community.
Sometime at the beginning of February we wandered into the nearest “city” to the local “guitar” store, managed to get a used Peavey amp and cord, a Mel Bay book of chords and those thin picks Justin recommends. I was unimpressed by the rather abrasive owner (nothing I said was “right”, and Justin who?, and you should learn on an acoustic, not an electric, etc.) and the next nearest guitar shop is 76 miles away. I’m going to drag the hubby there when the weather improves just to look around. But oh, did having an amp make learning so much more fun! [edit: turns out she must have been having a bad day, went back a couple months later to buy some picks and we had a great time chatting for an hour while I tried out some guitars, we get along fine now.]
Did modules 3 and 4. Love the E and Em, I can Do those! My A is finally looking and sounding pretty good, too. Bought myself a copy of the Beginner’s First Songbook and a guitar strap. Finally figured out how to use it and have been working on Three Little Birds, I’d never heard it before and I really like it, have it memorized, find myself singing it to my dogs while walking them in the woods, my chord changes to D are kind of bad though and I realized my D really needed more perfecting. As does the Dm and changing from it to anything. Am needs work, too. So, I’m holding off on Module 5 till I am happier with D, Dm and Am.
Okay, paragraphs can be hard so in a nutshell.
A - good,
Am - good, when I can get my fingers on the right strings.
E and Em - good
D - getting there
Dm - heh, heh, heh, um, not yet though better than a couple days ago when I posted a photo of my fingers and got some useful advice.
OMC - Got some up into the low 50s occasionally, averaging around 46, D to Am stuck around 27, but Dm to Am? - 12
My changes from E to D have suffered when I realized my D was looking bad, working on that now
Strumming getting there, can’t get distracted and do well on Old Faithful. The other 2, okay, trying to change chords during them screws me up though.
Riffs Forgot about them till today, managed the Peter Gunn and 7 Nation Army without having to recheck Justin’s videos, couldn’t for the life of me remember how Sunshine of Your Love goes so I quit for the day at that point.
*Three Little Birds, * chord changing to D gets messy, working on that, hoping to record myself in the next couple of weeks. (Bwa ha ha ha)
Love Me Do getting the hang of that, too.
Feelin’ Alright Tried it for 5 minutes, ouch, I can sing the song by heart but dang if I can get the rhythm and chords correct! I’ll hold off on that for now till I’m happy with the other 2. (Probably didn’t help that I forgot about using the Capo, either.)
I find it interesting when it comes to songs, that I HAVE to sing the words while I’m playing, or I cannot get the chord changes in the right places. I don’t know if it’s because I grew up with a lot of this music or because I had a few years in school in choruses, or both. I had to learn to sing Three Little Birds before it made sense to me.
I’ve listened to all of the stage 1 and 2 songs on Spotify and the ones I don’t like I feel like I am not going to be able to learn at all. I don’t “feel” them so I can’t sing them, so it seems impossible for me to even attempt playing them. Same reason the 3 songs in the free portion of the app aren’t working for me. I listened to the actual songs and, nope, don’t like them. Short of following the notes on the app, the songs are otherwise meaningless to me.
I’ve also dabbled with Ain’t No Sunshine and the hubby was really pushing me to learn that one as he is learning the bass part on Yousician. I finally had to tell me to stop stressing me out!
So though I started, sort of, in December, I’m really only counting my actual progress since I joined the website on January 25th. Since I couldn’t do a darned thing with a guitar a couple months ago, I guess this isn’t too bad.
And for the heck of it, here’s my guitar and amp.