Sevi's Sweat and Tears (aka learning log)

I’m working on a few things at different levels, and I need a place to keep track of it all, so this can hopefully be it.

What I already can play well most of the time:
Three Little Birds - Bob Marley
Walk the Line - Johnny Cash (easy open chords, changing base notes, singing)
Keine ruhige Minute - Reinhard Mey (Old Faithful, singing)
Mad World - Gary Jules (fingerstyle, riff, singing)
The Gambler - Kenny Rogers (play with record)
Yellow Submarine - The Beatles
Surfin’ USA - The Beach Boys (riff, singing)
Breakfast at Tiffany’s - Deep Blue Something (Old Faithful, singing)
Hound Dog - Elvis
I’m a Believer - The Monkees
Schlaflied für Anne - Fredrik Vahle (fingerstyle, melody elements)
Über Sieben Brücken - Peter Maffay

What I am working on:
Jolene: getting faster with easy fingerstyle, singing, original picking
Breakfast at Tiffany’s: original 16 note strumming, singing (eventually)
Anyone for you - George Ezra: 16 note strumming, overall structure, singing (eventually)
Über den Wolken - Reinhard Mey: double time picking, hammer-on’s, singing
Working Class Hero: faster chord changes, dynamics, singing (eventually)
Bei Ilse und Willi auf’m Land - Reinhard Mey: F bar chord, finding strumming pattern(s), singing, learning lyrics
Scarborough Fair - Simon & Garfunkel: learning the picking patterns
Radioactive - Imagine Dragons: singing
Father and Son - Cat Stevens: intro, B bar chord, dynamics, change in rhythm

What I want to learn in the near future:
Streets of London, Schlaflied - Die Ärzte, The Letter, Puff the Magic Dragon, I see Fire - Ed Sheeran, Bard Song - Blind Guardians


Hey Eva,

Nice list of songs with lots of variations in style, tempo & difficulty… :grinning:
Do you have Justin’s ap? I use it mainly for the “guitar karaoke” to play along with the songs I’m learning… it’s fun!

I’m working on Sheeran’s Make it Rain… it’s not difficult but also not easy to sound like the original… also anything by Simon & Garfunkel is really challenging, Paul Simon does some intricate picking patterns that are a challenge to get “under the fingers”!!!
Good Luck!!!


I don’t have a mobile phone, so no. But I’ve been thinking about finding a way to get it on my tablet, since I think it’s important to learn in context with other instruments. Ideally, with other people in a band, but I don’t think that’s happening any time soon.

Yeah, I love it, but it is a lot. I found a good tutorial, and I’m taking it very, very slowly, bit by bit. I wanna do this right, since it is such a beautiful song. I’m learning it for my sister, incidentally, to show her how it is played when we meet up in September. If I have a lot of time, I might be lucky to have at least learned all the patterns and the structure til then, but there is no chance I’m gonna be anywhere near singing speed. It doesn’t matter, I love the song, and I’m learning lots, and that’s what’s important.

What’s the challenge?

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Not really sure… it’s a slow tempo with Am Em B7 chords throughout & I know them all well.
It’s just not sounding like Ed though…
My wife often recognizes what I’m playing without lyrics, but not this one!!! It’s a work in progress I guess! At some point it’ll come together for me!
Have fun learning the songs you’re working on!!!


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I hope it clicks soon for you!

I started music theory Grade 1 and 2 yesterday, and it’s amazing how much I still remember from my piano lessons when I was a kid. I went through it very fast, and I even made a chordbook/songbook:


I guess I put this here as well, so I know how bad it was in the beginning. The goal is to start recording myself regularly from now on, so I can analyse myself, and hopefully get less nervous by repeated exposure :laughing:



Great first effort! The strumming was fairly tidy - your confidence will grow and your performance will improve. Try practicing it a little slower.


Thank you, Brian :hibiscus:, will do. I hadn’t realised how fast I was getting with it, and now it makes sense why my fingers are sometimes confused about what is next. Will go slower, and hopefully there will be no more confusion^^

I say the same as @beejay56 , great effort. The best part was when you kept going when it went a little bit wrong. So hard to do when starting out. Well done!!

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Thank you, @ziggysden it made me smile :smile:

Wow, I’d like to be able to play like that!

Welcome and keep playing, it’s nice!

Thank you! :smiley: How is it going on your end?

Hiya Sevi,

it’s going good, my wrist aches, my fingers too, but I’m now totally fixed on my Guitar (I call her Precious) and really enjoying myself, I’ve started maybe two weeks ago, so I’m definitely no Jimmy Page (yet!), but where would be the fun if I was :innocent:.

Keep the good vibes pouring on us!

Yeah, the aches everywhere! I remember it well, and I’m glad it goes away after a while. I am having them again atm, though, cause I’m learning barre chords, and it hurts a fair bit in the wrist as well.

Ohh, your baby has a name, I love it! :+1:t5: It’s great, isn’t it, to make her sing? I fell completely in love with the feeling of suddenly making music again, after such a long time just listening to it^^

I am really glad I found my way to this forum; I feel like the people hanging out around here are very welcoming and so encouraging, it’s so cool! If you ever need, like, a kind word, or some motivation, or just want to vent your frustration a bit (because it does happen, occasionally^^), hit me up. I love doing this as together as one can over words on a screen^^ Do you have someone to play with in your circle?

Thanks for your kind words,

no, I don’t have anyone in my circle to gig with, anyway I’m such a noob that I certainly won’t impose myself on anyone as a music buddy before a long long time.

Yeah, I can understand that. I waited three months to ask the guy who inspired me to start learning if he wants to jam.

And this is my fingerpicking at this point in time. Schlaflied für Anne, a nice little lullabye. I can sing to it, no problem, but the recording app does not balance well, and playing is more important.

I did not have much time to practice or play the last few weeks, although I managed at least five minutes every day. And I feel it. Not necessarily in my motivation, not yet, but rather in the progress I have made, or rather did not make. I am used to very fast progress, both because I am still in my first 6 months, and because I was playing one or more hours a day. I knew it would slow down once I did not have the time for it anymore, but knowing and feeling can be different things at times.

I haven’t had time to practice Scarborough Fair for two weeks, and I fear I may as well start from scratch, since the patterns were not ingrained enough yet. I am experimenting with holding my picking hand differently, but progress is so slow it might as well be non-existent. Usually at this point, a few days after I started, I would have already found a better solution for myself, and had at least started to develop muscle memory already. Instead, I am still experimenting.

I know learning guitar is a marathon, but because it kinda felt like a sprint for four months, it’s difficult to switch the mindset. I still love playing, and I find if I only have limited time, I’m playing songs rather than practicing or experimenting with new stuff, and I think that’s OK. Is this what the fabled ‘consolidation’ is like? Because I do not really know what that means in the context of learning.

Edit: I did have one ‘real’ practice session today, where I think I finally nailed the singing to Country Roads after months of squabbling with it. It does not feel quite like it clicked yet, but at least I know how much base notes I have for each chord in the verse (4, except for C and G at the end where it’s 2), and I am able to count them while singing most of the time. And I also found a place in the Old Faithful where to start singing again so it does not sound quite as wrong-footed as before. Gosh, I do not know why this was/is so difficult for me. It’s just Country Roads, ffs!

If you have limited time there’s nothing wrong with just playing songs you know. The main thing is to try and play something every day, even if it’s just for 5 minutes. No time with your instrument is ever wasted. If you’re busy with other life things then it’s OK just to have guitar as the ‘fun’ thing you do for a while. Come back to serious practice when you have the time to focus. We are self-taught, we can make our own rules :grinning:

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