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Thread: Modern Method for Guitar, Singing, Learning Electric Method on Acoustic

  1. #1
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    Modern Method for Guitar, Singing, Learning Electric Method on Acoustic

    I have several questions..

    1) This is for anybody else that's worked out of A Modern Method for Guitar (Vol. 1, Leavitt). I've been working out of the book for several months (I started after only playing for a few months so I had to learn to read music, learn to alternate pick, left hand technique basically from scratch, so it took a long time to get where I can learn the pieces w/in a reasonable amount of time). Anyway, I'm wondering what the best way is to go about learning from this book. Right now, I am taking a few pieces at a time and working on them for a couple weeks, trying to get them perfect at a reasonable speed (120 bpm or so). What speed should I be trying to work stuff up to (specifically the early pieces, Etude's No. 1 and 2, First and Second Solo, the Duets in G and F and the Picking exercises)? Is there a better way for me to go about doing this or are there are tips for working through this method book?



    2) This is a music question but not a guitar question but I figured the people on this forum would have knowledge about it, anyway... I'm starting to develop a reasonable level of proficiency at play the guitar, enough that I ought to be able to sing and play fairly difficult songs. Anyway, the problem I've been confronted w/ is that I have absolutely no natural singing talent. Am I pretty much just out of luck, or can I learn to become a decent singer? If I can learn what is the best way to go about this, voice lessons, web sites, books and cds? Any suggestions appreciated.


    3) Last, I'm feeling limited by my trustee acoustic guitar lately. It's seems like most of what I'm learning and far as playing lead, soloing strategies all revolves around the electric guitar. I plan on getting an electric, just not for several more months until I have a little more bank. Anyway, in the meantime am I helping myself by trying to learn electric style on an acoustic? Is it possible for me to gain the necessary speed by playing electric or am I just going to need to wait until I get an electric? Anyway, thanks any help is appreciated.


    Adam

  2. #2
    Chicks dig me Danster's Avatar
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    Re: Modern Method for Guitar, Singing, Learning Electric Method on Acoustic

    Hey there adam! Welcome to iBreathe Music!

    Originally posted by adamop10s
    1) This is for anybody else that's worked out of A Modern Method for Guitar (Vol. 1, Leavitt). I've been working out of the book for several months (I started after only playing for a few months so I had to learn to read music, learn to alternate pick, left hand technique basically from scratch, so it took a long time to get where I can learn the pieces w/in a reasonable amount of time).
    I bought the book last November. I think I'm on about page 23 right now. I keep starting and stopping, not being 100% convinced if this is the best way to use my practice time. But anyhoo, I don't think that "learning the pieces" early in the book is the goal. I think learning to read music is the goal. Once you learn those pieces, you are no longer forced to read the music, because you have it at least partially memorized.

    Anyway, I'm wondering what the best way is to go about learning from this book. Right now, I am taking a few pieces at a time and working on them for a couple weeks, trying to get them perfect at a reasonable speed (120 bpm or so). What speed should I be trying to work stuff up to (specifically the early pieces, Etude's No. 1 and 2, First and Second Solo, the Duets in G and F and the Picking exercises)? Is there a better way for me to go about doing this or are there are tips for working through this method book?
    I think you should not worry about perfecting certain pieces before going on to the next ones. When trying to learn to read music, if a piece becomes too familiar, then it loses value as a tool for learning to read. For me, when going through those, I never play one piece more than once a day, and also never on consecutive days even. That helps ensure that I am forced to read. And as far as speed is concerned, I think you should work up to a point so that your going at a speed that the song sounds good at, whatever that speed may be. And forgive me if I'm being too redundant, but I think the way to do that is to read and play lots of different pieces, rather than the same one over and over.
    2) Anyway, the problem I've been confronted w/ is that I have absolutely no natural singing talent.
    Me neither, but I don't care. I don't have any desire to develop my singing.

    3) Anyway, in the meantime am I helping myself by trying to learn electric style on an acoustic? Is it possible for me to gain the necessary speed by playing electric or am I just going to need to wait until I get an electric? Anyway, thanks any help is appreciated.
    Playing acoustic won't hurt you. I played acoustic 20 years ago for a couple of years. Two years ago I started with electric. It was certainly an advantage to me that I had played before, even though it was an acoustic. But I don't think you are likely to attain the speed on an acoustic that you will on electric. I recently acquired an acoustic guitar, and it is much harder to play than electric, I suppose mostly because the strings are heavier on the acoustic. Anyhoo, good luck to ya!
    Peace

  3. #3
    5 years, still suck.. Leviathon's Avatar
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    I can answer #2 of your question, well at least give you somewhat of a good opinion having been a vocal performance major and minor in trumpet (though I never finished).

    I am assuming that you are not tone deaf. That you can hear a note and then be able to sing that note on pitch without having to search for it. I remember my first semester in college and taking ear training and sight training, there was this girl who was playing flute. Well, this poor girl was as tone deaf as a rock. She could not sing one lick. So imagine the frustration that she went through along with the prof. Anyways.

    I do a lot of singing at church and in two choirs, my wife and both sing, I sing tenor in a southern gospel quartet and recently just started to sing and play guitar in a new alternative/comtemporary/grundge band at church. Even though I don't sing like Pavarotti (though I could), I still use alot of the techniques from being able to sing properly. Having been somewhat trained it has helped me more than you could believe. I know how to breath (most important), where to direct my airflow, intonation, etc...

    Eric V. wrote IMO a great article on developing your own tone for the guitar. But that can also be applied to voice just as well. Many people IMO, try and emulate certain singers when in fact there physical make up won't allow, so they do more damage than good. And if this person is trying to pull off a vocal line like Steve Perry or Steven Tyler and so on they may even be damaging their vocal chords. So first lesson sing within your limits. With proper training and practice and breathing your vocal abilities will change. Example. Before I went to college and singing in Highschool I could sing up to a high A, and that was pretty much it. Now almost 10 years after highschool, there are songs that we do in my southern gospel quartet that require me to sing a D above high C without using falsetto. I'm not trying to blow my own horn, but this is what learning to sing can do for you.

    I would say take voice lessons. A teacher will know where you vocally sing at, Bass, Baritone, or Tenor. Maybe you are one of the gifted ones and would be able to sing all three ranges.

    Also becareful who you mimic. There are some lowsy singers IMO. Like the lead singer from Greenday. He sounds like he's got a horrible cold or something been shoved up his sinus passages.

    I could go on on. So think about it. If you have any questions I will check back and respond to them...
    Last edited by Leviathon; 08-15-2003 at 09:13 PM.

  4. #4
    Groovemastah DanF's Avatar
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    Collin Raye is a fantastic singer (country)

    I wrote a HUGE reply to this question and the server munched it. Anyway there is a book out called Rock-N-Roll singers survival manual that talks about a lot of the stuff that leviathon mentioned. Taking actual voice training lessons wouldn't hurt either although I understand they are the most expensive there are.

    I have the Berklee Modern Method CD and I would say etude 1 is played around 96-106 bmp. Of course I don't really know. If you'd like to PM me with your email address I will send you that one soundfile just to give you an idea (it may be worth it to purchase another copy to get the CD).

    -Dan

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