Guitar Lessons & Hearing Problems Down The Ol’ Homestead

Listening And Learning

Playing the guitar need not be something that is ‘in the blood’ so to speak, even though I still remember some of my first guitar lessons with my grandpa when we used to sit out in the front porch – online guitar lessons were of course unheard of at that time, as was the internet itself!

These were happy times, him reminiscing about the war and plucking on his old battered guitar, while this ten year old kid sat watching the fire-flies dancing in the dark, and hanging on his every word. He’s long gone now – hopefully to a better place – but the memories remain.

His old Homesteading seemed to be covered in battered sheds, with broken farm equipment lying everywhere. An old Rhode Island Red cockerel, strutted around as if it owned the place and never missed an opportunity to chase me out of the yard – grandpa used to laugh and said it was my red hair that did it! I still don’t know if there is any truth in that – it probably just smelt the fear!

By todays modern homesteading standards, his place would probably be regarded as a broken down dump. Nevertheless we had some good times on that old porch, right up to when I was about 16 years old and he finally passed away. His gentile guitar lessons however stuck with me, so unlike the raging noise from the electric guitar, that often leaves us with ear-ache and seeking out a natural tinnitus treatment to relieve the pain. Even today whenever I pick up my guitar I am reminded of the times we rehearsed on the front porch.

Happy times indeed. Maybe I’m just getting old and looking back at an idealistic, simpler life, where the mobile phone or the internet just did not exist, and the evening entertainment consisted of the family and friends gathered on the porch, playing music and singing their favourite songs. Of course an ideal existence is only a pipe-dream; but sometimes its good to dream…

Learning Guitar Means Starting Somewhere

No matter what you attempt in life, the fact is that everyone has to start somewhere. Lessons are actually a part of growing up, and as much as I would like to be like a character in the Matrix, and simply plug-in to the information I needed; to learn my guitar unfortunately requires a degree of discipline and patience!

Sometimes such lessons come easy, especially if it is ‘in the genes’ so to speak. Miley Cyrus for instance – was it easier having a famous country music father? Billy Ray Cyrus of Achy Breaky Heart fame, surely passed on some of his music genes to his daughter; just as in the same way I inherited an ability to build or fix things from my own dad – or so he would have me believe :)

I was a late starter when it comes to musical abilities. I never had any inclination to play the guitar at all, until I was in my late 20’s; then it just seemed to develop a life of it’s own, and I nearly drove my wife crazy trying to learn the chords to American Pie or leaving on a jet plane – amongst all the other country music ‘golden oldies.’

Like most people I would have probably thrown my guitar to the back of the cupboard, if I had not realised the need for  good online guitar lessons.  Jamming steve or Jamorama are two such courses where you can learn to play guitar one step at a time. Patience and discipline – that’s the main thing.

Why patience? Well the fact is that if you are anything like me then you want to play like a guitar legend..NOW – not in 5 years’ time! That’s just not going to happen – so patience is definitely required otherwise you will get disillusioned and disappointed with your own progress, and throw in the towel before you have even given yourself a decent chance.

Discipline also plays a major factor when learning the guitar or indeed any musical instrument, as without a regime in place that you can follow, you will soon get lost in your attempts and instead of advancing in your efforts, you will have no defining moments on which you can evaluate your progress.

Another thing to consider when learning a musical instrument, is why exactly you want to learn it in the first place! Do you just have a burning desire to learn, does it just seem like a good idea, are you bored, or perhaps you fancy a life as a famous entertainer? All of the above reasons and many more besides, are legitimate motives for wanting to play guitar or other musical instruments.

My final word on the subject? Be patient above all things, and if you really want to play the acoustic guitar like your country music (or rock music, etc) hero – never give up; perseverance will bring its own rewards.

Guitars, Music & General Stuff