Notter's AVOYP - February 2023 - Slackstring (20th Feb); Green Day (17th Feb)

Very nice job with a tricky song to play and sing!

Good stuff, Mark :smiley:
You’re on the right road, although I was expecting to see your electric out for Green Day, esp. for a barre chord workout :laughing:
It’s all been said above, except no one commented on the lack of sych between audio and visuals (Is it just on my end?) I was looking at your percussive hits and they appeared to be on the upstroke! :thinking: :roll_eyes: Doesn’t make any real difference, but might as well know.
Enjoyed the grin.
Keep it up :sunglasses:

1 Like

Thanks Brian, the originals actually acoustic and hey why not make the barres harder by using that instead of the leccy one right?!

No you’re right with the synching, not sure at what stage it got messed up, the original was recorded on my phone so a .mov file. I’m assuming windows, whilst able to take it, decided to play a trick on Apple or something. I need to investigate as it’s quite handy to use the phone for an acoustic recording!

Hello Mark, what a great performance :clap::+1::smiley:. As I’m still working on making the F barre chord ring out clearly, I can imagine how difficult and exhausting this song must be. Very well, done :hugs:.

1 Like

Well done Mark, not an easy song. Love a bit of GD but this is the odd one when I scream “get a wriggle Billy Joe for something xxx sake”. Their slow tempo stuff is quite tricky and more so when singing, so congrats on your performance sir well done.

I would have dropped kicked it, in favour of this. So kudos for working at a great song regardless.

1 Like

@NicoleKKB thank you, you’ll get there with F absolutely, then you can have as much fun as I did with this! :confounded:

@TheMadman_tobyjenner that’s a good point on GD’s slow stuff, I quite like the energy of Macy’s Day though. They’ve diversified so well from their roots it’s pretty impressive.

D’you know what, there’s been a few comments above about this song, and it’s difficulty level, that reassure me as I’ve felt I should have been able to “get it” better. Maybe it wasn’t the best of choices for where I’m at but at the same time it’s been, and will remain, a fun challenge!


If only everyone knew which AVOYPs I listened to while doing boring stuff around the house :rofl:.

Percussive hits… I was going to say something about your comment on them because they mostly sounded good. You mentioned the index finger getting in the way. Here’s a weird one to try out. I use Tortex picks, I found percussive hits easier with green (thicker) than with orange (medium). Something to do with the thickness of the pick. Now I can do both after using just the greens for a while. So maybe try experimenting with different picks, this being easier with thick ones is at odds with the general advice that strumming is easier with thinner picks.

I ran into this a LONG time ago with one of my early AVOYPs. iPhones record in variable bit rate, wheras SOME editing software - Adobe Premiere Elements in my case (also applies to Premiere Pro) couldn’t handle it without a pre-conversion to constant bit rate. It applies if you’re syncing separately recorded video & audio. I switched editing software to something without the issue and the problem went away.


Hi Mark,

Lovely song, and well played. I love it. Nice steady rhythm there, just a teeny bit more flow in some of the chord changes, otherwise fine. I admire your A-shaped barre chords. They sound super clear. Unfortunately, I don’t know the original song melody, it sounds to me that the higher notes are sung sometimes a little flat. Would it work for you to play and/or sing against the original and record that as part of the practice routine?

Kind regards,


1 Like

Interesting to read, that others suffer from this inner-dialog aspect too. Don’t think of a pink elephant…I regularly mess up songs in the last few seconds, while thinking, yeah…this time I won’t…


Mark, you gave yourself a pretty difficult task with this song. Such a lot of things going on. But you managed this bundle of tasks pretty well. I just started with the percussive hits. Way to go till I reach your abilities!

1 Like

@TRJ thanks Tjeerd, you’re right in the vocals drifting a little during. I actually have a Spotify playlist of all the songs I’ve learned or am learning to sing along to in the car as practice!! Only problem is too many songs now :joy:

@Helen0609 thanks also :slightly_smiling_face: the hits will come, it’s a far harder technique than I could have imagined, especially making sure high E doesn’t ring or you catch it on the upstrum after the hit. That little voice gets us all it seems :joy:

1 Like

Hello again, trying to keep up the momentum and tick off another consoidation song. Sunday Jen by Slackstring, a song that’s accompanied many post mountain bike day out beers!
Couple of first times in this, using the Digitech Trio+ for the backing track and recording the Blackstar amp using a Shure SM57, interested in any comments on the balance overall.

Enjoy, hopefully one more to post in February :+1:


Sounding good to me Mark. The trio is doing its job nicely. Thought the vox and gtr were well balanced, with the guitar cutting through on the chorus, so some good dynamics in evidence.
The Shure worked well on this track but you may find for some songs you may need to get a bit up close and personal. A tip eh Close gave me when I switched to the same mic from a condenser. But sounding in order for sure.


1 Like

Thanks Toby :slight_smile:

I’ve been trying to be a bit more conscious on dynamics so your comment there pleases me, having said that I’m sure the guitar came through louder in my headphones in the chorus than it does in the recording!! But having spent 4 hours on this yesterday with a view to recording this morning (unexpected day off work!) I wasn’t going to do it again!! :rofl:

1 Like

Macy’s Day Parade
That looked like quite a workout and way beyond Grade 2 playing. Well done Mark. You’re making great progress mate.

Sunday Jen
That sounded great with the Trio backing track. Very well played and sung. You must be really happy with the progress that you have made. Well done.

1 Like

Darn, I nearly missed this, which would have been a great pity.

Lovely performance, both playing and singing, excellent use of the Trio, and well recorded, Mark. In a nutshell, a most enjoyable production.

No issues with the balance, every part was audible. Guitar tone was lovely.

For my personal taste I’d have liked the guitar and vocal a few dB louder, just a wee bit without over-powering drums and bass.

But now we are into polishing territory, which is extremely subjective. And the way in which you are recording the video, the specific software might influence how you might tinker with the mix. Though I must stress, nothing seriously wrong with the mix as you produced it.

Overall the recording was soft relative to the YT norm (check Stats For Nerds to see this). Depending on how you are producing the video you may have different options to raise the overall loudness. Again not a big deal, I just turned up my playback volume. If you wanted to take care of this, I consider 3-6dB below the norm to be a good target.

Once again, bravo, an excellent production.

1 Like

@Socio Thanks for checking these out James, definitely happy with the progress and momentum. You’re not the first person to comment on the level of Macys Day Parade, I must admit I never thought of it like that. In retrospect it’s difficulty level has possibly been part of the reason I’ve taken a while to get this list of mine completed, it’s kind of consumed me especially the last couple of months. Moving to Sunday Jen felt a breeze by comparison, as I mentioned to Toby I chucked 4 hours at it over the weekend, including “training” the Trio, and I felt pretty good to go. The difference open chords make :wink: Hope things are calming down for you a bit mate :+1:

@DavidP Pleased you didn’t miss this too! :wink: Funnily enough I made a little final tweak before this recording ever so slightly boosting the bass and drums on the Trio as my previous take the guitar felt too much up front! As you say, it’s polishing territory which is a fine place to be, the new recording setup with mic-ing the amp will take a little tweaking too for the overall levels but in parallel to the learning it’s quite fun messing around with it. Thanks again :+1:


Hey, that was really good Mark. You can really see how your playing has come along! Sounded great.

1 Like

Hi Mark. Overall that was done pretty well. Like others have said not an easy one to play and sing, but you pulled it off.
Justin has a lesson with Tammy wherein he told her you should be able to strum the song and carry on a conversation at the same time. I didn’t feel like you were quite at that point with this one. Just something to think about as you continue the journey. I enjoyed your performance.

1 Like

Thanks Dave, I presume (dangerous I know!) you’re referring to Macy’s Day Parade? A fair comment, it’s not dropping off my repertoire so will become more automatic with more playing. Appreciate the listen and feedback! :+1: