@Rallyco I’m the opposite to you I enjoy strumming more but my timing is terrible and struggle to get the feeling of a song. They all tend to end up with same pattern. Everybody Hurts by REM has a nice picking pattern and can be played with plec or fingersyle. House of the rising son would be a good option to look at too.
Feel free to watch my videos and give them the heckling they deserve lol. I am a work in progress just like any of us are here. If anyone was ready to sign a record contract they would likely not be here learning. Have a wonderful day.
Welcome to the Community, Gwyn. Lots of great suggestions already made. Enjoy laying the solid foundations and you’ll find your voice and path on the instrument as you progress through the grades.
Welcome t the community - I think that you will love it here. I admire your resolve and can relate to your angst.
Justin suggests identifying a specific goal and staying focused on it. Think of what it is about learning guitar that first appealed to you and motivated you to learn. Was it a specific song, songwriting, melody, lead riff…? Maybe you just like holding it (which I often do myself) and running scales. There’s nothing wrong with whatever you choose play as long as you enjoy doing it.
I suggest to continue to explore different styles and techniques. Pursue that which feels like a fit and it will lead you to your goal. Persevere through those things that stump you and nail them down - each new hurdle becomes less intimidating and builds confidence.
As for ‘short fingers’, I’m sorry to say that people have overcome greater challenges with fewer resources - think of the blind snow skier, or paralyzed mountain climber. You can do this.
@tony well, seems like I’m going to learn how to sing. Maybe I’ll join in the rally cry (and the chorus) at one point, too.
@Weebuns let’s join forces, then. When it comes to picking songs, my timing is terrible, too. Just say it yesterday with the Come As You Are Riff here on Justinguitar. I still don’t have the hang of it. My bad sense for rhythm is legendary. I’ll look into Everybody Hurts and House of the Rising Sun, thanks!
@SDKissFan I’ll look around for your videos, but probably will keep my (still) uneducated opinion to myself. Best case, they’ll inspire me to post my own attempts at playing in the future.
Have a wonderful day, too!
@DavidP thanks for the welcome and the kind words, David!
@Papa_G Hi, Gary, thanks for the welcome, I already like the community here a lot. I’ve tried my hand at the bass for many years (still mediocre, though), and think I got the idea to learn guitar when listening to The Divine Comedy’s Time Lapse. Being able to play Lady of a Certain Age is probably one goal for me. Or London Irish, but that’s strumming, which means, at much as I don’t like it, I have to learn it. Motivation!
And as for my short fingers… they make things difficult, but not impossible. They’re already much more flexible than they used to be. They certainly won’t stop me. Thanks for your advice and kind words, I really hope with participating in this great community I won’t need a fourth attempt any time soon.
@tony I’ve been looking around the site for the video on singing/playing but came up empty so far. Maybe I’m looking in the wrong place, but could you point me the right way, if you still know where the video is to be found?
For me, singing and playing at the same time was a lot easier than what Justin teaches in this video. His approach is particularly thorough and detailed, if it happens more easily for you, that’s great, if not, he certainly covers all the bases.
Thanks a lot for the fast reply, I didn’t even think about looking on Youtube
Hello Gwyn, a very warm welcome to the community.
Third time beginner, I hope you make it stick this time.
In the early stages, when you are just playing 1 or 2 or 4 down strums per bar, you are learning and practicing essential skills though admittedly the strumming will not necessarily fill your cup of excitement.
For me however, strumming is a joy. This instrument is fundamentally a rhythmic one. I can easily and happily play muted percussive strums (no chords, no harmony, no melody) varying and mixing it up on eighth and sixteenth pattern beats like a mad percussionist.
Then there’s strumming soft, strumming hard, strumming with palm mutes, strumming near the bridge, near the neck. Strumming all down power chord chugging.
Oh yeah, before I forget, I have been known to extol the virtues of learning songs, songs, songs also!
Welcome back Gwyn! I didn’t start learning until after turning 60 so there is hope! Most of my playing is also fingerstyle, but I find great enjoyment in strumming out a Jimmy Buffet tune as well. I’m glad you are taking another stab at it.
Hi Gwyn, welcome back although you look to have been taking Justin Sandercoe’s lessons earlier than me. For the ones who want to play melodies, finger style is the thing and the rest are exercises. For the ones who wants to accompany songs, strumming is the thing (although you can also accompany a song finger style like Tony) and the rest are exercises. How the beginner courses are structured is to provide a good general foundation in as many possible aspects of the guitar playing as possible. Once you can pass that beginner stage you can focus (and Justin suggests that) in what you really like about guitar playing.
@Richard_close2u Hello Richard and thanks for the warm welcome! I really hope you strumming enthusiasts will give me a boost on motivation, because I can sure need it. It’s great to see how different players like different styles and while I still don’t get the hang of strumming for enjoyment, I really want to learn a bit of everything, regardless. Even strumming!
@TheCluelessLuthier Thanks for the welcome, Mark, seems like I still have a bit of time to start many times again Although I really hope this will be the last (and successfuI) time. Never thought about playing fingerstyle, I enjoy picking the most. And plucking, but that’s more up the bass aisle, I fear. It’s good to see that the community is populated by so many old-timers, so much for “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks”, ha!
@dobleA Hi Andrés, maybe I’ve started earlier but you seem to be more advanced than me, still. That’s what quitting two times will get you. To be quite honest, I love working away at technical exercises, maybe that’s why strumming gives me a bit of trouble. I suppose it’s more a “feeling” thing. I’ll go through the beginner stage one by one, but am already wondering when I can have a look at the courses focused on different styles. Rock, for example, is tagged as suitable for all courses. Still, taking my time and all. Thanks for your welcome!