Author Topic: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar  (Read 4769 times)

dcozad999

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40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« on: May 27, 2016, 08:00:20 AM »
Subject says it all. I'm wanting to learn to play.  Probably going to have  a friend teach me.

I'm starting pretty much from scratch. Anyone know some good youtube lessons or other free online courses I can play around with before I start taking some lessons.

sonjak

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #1 on: May 27, 2016, 08:11:27 AM »
I found the videos by this guy really helpful:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=llNuwhZWXKA

I got busy/lazy and haven't restarted but have this bookmarked so I can.  Good luck!

shotgunwilly

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #2 on: May 27, 2016, 08:13:36 AM »
I learned from Youtube.  The biggest thing is just seat time, play every day and keep trying and trying and trying. It will be tempting to give up early. Start with fingering simple chords, then work on transitioning from one chord to another. 

mtn

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #3 on: May 27, 2016, 08:22:10 AM »
Learn you chords--start with G, C, D, A, E, Am, Em. Between those you have every country and folk song ever written.

Then practice your scales. Every day, do at least one scale.

As far as lessons go, ask around to find a good instructor. They’re few and far between—I had 2 useless ones before I realized they weren’t teaching me anything. Then I got a really good one—I didn’t get much better while I was with him, since it was a short time, but he gave me the base to become “OK”—I won’t say good since I’m not—and my little brother the ability to become a pro, if he wanted.

Got a guitar yet? I can make a ton of recommendations in any price point.

GuitarStv

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2016, 08:36:48 AM »
What kind of music do you like, and what do you want to play?  This determines the type of guitar and method of picking you should start with.  A guy who wants to play metal covers will want to start in a totally different spot than a guy who wants to play classical pieces.

The way I've always taught people to play is they give me a big list of songs that they like with guitar parts, and then I go through the list and find the simplest ones.  Then break those songs down into small playable bits and riffs.

Once a person has several of these riffs under his belt and is enjoying what he's doing then I start working on teaching your basic open position chords.  With those you can bang out a huge number of chord progressions and songs.  Then (if the guy is interested in learning to solo) we cover pentatonic scales, playing over simple blues/rock/pop progressions and the like.  From there we start getting into learning full guitar parts to songs note for note, more advanced technique (barre chords, slides, hammer-on/pull-offs, tapping, different picking styles), music theory (basic major/minor scales all the way up to modes), chord construction, note targeting while soloing, etc.

Inkedup

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2016, 08:55:21 AM »
Start with the songs you want to learn to play, but don't be overly ambitious when first starting out.
Prioritize accuracy over speed. Be patient with yourself. 

whiskeystache89

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #6 on: May 27, 2016, 09:01:18 AM »
Go down to the crossroads under the moonless sky and ask for Old Scratch.

fuzzed

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2016, 09:02:17 AM »
I was a 45 year old who had the same ambition.  I ended up taking lessons once a week for $18 a lesson.  I live in a small town so it was very inexpensive.
First few weeks were focused on reading music and working through a beginner book.  Then we switched to learning the songs I wanted to learn.

I found having a weekly lesson made me practice and helped me keep going.   I stopped lessons about 3 months ago (after 2.5 years) , but have kept on practicing the songs I have learned along the way.

I had many friends try the internet or buy a teach yourself dvd/video but I think when starting out you need the help of a pro.  If you have friends to help you that is great.

Most of all have fun with it!   I found it exhausting the first few months of lessons, I had never taken any music lesson in my life so it was a real workout.

Drifterrider

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #8 on: May 27, 2016, 09:08:51 AM »
Subject says it all. I'm wanting to learn to play.  Probably going to have  a friend teach me.

I'm starting pretty much from scratch. Anyone know some good youtube lessons or other free online courses I can play around with before I start taking some lessons.

I started learning after age 40.

Your fingertips will hurt.  Break your practice sessions into smaller time bits (10-15 minutes) more frequently daily until you can practice longer.


Inaya

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #9 on: May 27, 2016, 09:17:28 AM »
I found a Groupon for an online piano course (by a company called SkillSuccess I think?) for $5. I haven't had a chance to use it yet, so I can't speak to how good it was, but the price was right.

dougules

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #10 on: May 27, 2016, 09:25:52 AM »
I think the biggest thing is just to mess around with it every day and keep yourself interested.  Try to play what you enjoy, and experiment with new things that make you excited.  If you keep your enthusiasm going, you'll take the time to figure it out. 

Also, don't get discouraged if things don't go well at first.  You'll sound terrible for a while, but it will really pick up once you get good enough to play a few simple songs well. 

opnfld

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #11 on: May 27, 2016, 09:59:27 AM »
Good, free lessons here: http://www.justinguitar.com/

dcozad999

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #12 on: May 27, 2016, 10:28:30 AM »
To answer some questions:

I bought this guitar 3-4 years ago on a groupon. A couple people that play have taken a look at it and really like the sound, especially at that price point.
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=takamine+jasmine

I took piano lessons for about 3 months 10-15 years ago. I know the notes but can't really read the music fast enough, so I played the jumps really. I was told I had a good ear and some talent. I really don't know a lot about music, so not even sure what I just said makes sense.

The type of music I want to play? All different kinds. I like to sing so would like to sing and play (ballads?).  Folk, a little country, pop. Nothing really heavy. I prefer simpler songs with the acoustic guitar. I like the simplicity of songs with either just a voice and a guitar or just a voice and a piano (think James Taylor).  I also kind of fell in love with the sound of the Spanish guitar, so wouldn't mind trying that if I ever get good enough. Also love a capella but that's off topic as it negates the need for a guitar.

My wife was a professional cellist in her youth in her home country and our four year-old is already taking lessons on piano and violin (mostly piano). My dream is for us to sit around the living room and play music together. The fourth and final member of our quartet is due any day now.

I will check out the youtube videos this weekend. I'm pretty excited. Wanted to do this for a long time but have been busy/and or procrastinating.

Thanks for everything and feel free to keep shooting ideas, or just talk about guitar playing.


Adge

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #13 on: May 27, 2016, 10:38:27 AM »
Good luck! To reiterate some advice others have mentioned:

Your fingers will hurt. It gets better.

Try to play a little most days, especially at first. Even just 15 minutes will help, and you'll start making a routine of it so it feels weird if you skip playing one day.

If you've never played a string instrument before then fretting- especially chord shapes- will feel really, really, really weird at first. You will probably question your sanity. But, after a few months of practice you'll notice that you can set down a chord shape in one fluid motion without thinking about it. Then one day you'll realize that you can do it without even looking at your hand, which will make you feel like a total badass :)

Enjoy!

mtn

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #14 on: May 27, 2016, 10:42:22 AM »
To answer some questions:

I bought this guitar 3-4 years ago on a groupon. A couple people that play have taken a look at it and really like the sound, especially at that price point.
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=takamine+jasmine

I took piano lessons for about 3 months 10-15 years ago. I know the notes but can't really read the music fast enough, so I played the jumps really. I was told I had a good ear and some talent. I really don't know a lot about music, so not even sure what I just said makes sense.

The type of music I want to play? All different kinds. I like to sing so would like to sing and play (ballads?).  Folk, a little country, pop. Nothing really heavy. I prefer simpler songs with the acoustic guitar. I like the simplicity of songs with either just a voice and a guitar or just a voice and a piano (think James Taylor).  I also kind of fell in love with the sound of the Spanish guitar, so wouldn't mind trying that if I ever get good enough. Also love a capella but that's off topic as it negates the need for a guitar.

My wife was a professional cellist in her youth in her home country and our four year-old is already taking lessons on piano and violin (mostly piano). My dream is for us to sit around the living room and play music together. The fourth and final member of our quartet is due any day now.

I will check out the youtube videos this weekend. I'm pretty excited. Wanted to do this for a long time but have been busy/and or procrastinating.

Thanks for everything and feel free to keep shooting ideas, or just talk about guitar playing.

The guitar should do well for a beginner. I'd take it to a reputable shop and make sure it is set up right (or have a guitar-playing friend tell you if it is or isn't, then take it in). If the action is out of whack, it will make for a miserable time. Also, I highly recommend a clip-on tuner if you don't have one. It just makes life a lot easier.

James Taylor stuff is usually fairly difficult since it is all finger picking and some odd chords, but start there if you want to. If you want something easier, most John Prine songs are a good place to start--as are Guy Clark, Bob Dylan, Townes Van Zandt, etc.

dcozad999

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #15 on: May 27, 2016, 12:21:07 PM »
@mtn - after going to amazon to get the link for the guitar to post here, I read one of the reviews talking about how to get it set up, so it's interesting you brought that up. I also purchased a clip on tuner earlier in the week and already got it.

@adge - yeah. I've played around a little the last couple days and fingers definitely hurt, lol. Also, I'm guessing I'm holding the guitar wrong because I'm having a lot of difficulty bending my wrist in a way to where I can get my fingers set up properly.  That will probably be remedied in the first lesson though.


Axecleaver

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #16 on: May 27, 2016, 12:56:33 PM »
When my daughter was ~8 years old she wanted to take acoustic guitar lessons (to play Hannah Montana songs, lol!) so we indulged her. When she was done with her lesson I would ask her to teach me, thinking that this would reinforce the lesson for her. You never learn something better than when you have to teach someone else to do it. This worked great for her, and I had to keep up with her so it worked for me, too.

About six months later, she decided to give up guitar and pursue the ukulele instead. I kept going with the guitar, but now I had no teacher to learn from. So I bought Rocksmith for the Playstation. This lets you hook up an actual electric guitar to the game and learn songs. I don't think it would be great to use when you're just starting out (you could probably develop some awful habits without help) but it's kind of fun and has some cool practice routines. It taught me how to do hammer-ons, pull-offs, harmonics, and alternate tunings.

The other thing I did was look at some guitar tabs - this is good for people who can't read music, if you want to learn a particular song. That'll lead you to learn more about the techniques/chords that are needed. I discovered through this that most Simon and Garfunkel songs are nothing more than arpeggio chords - that's where you make the chord shape, and play the strings individually. It sounds complicated but in practice, it's a super easy way to play pretty songs.

Obligatory Pachelbel rant link, just to reinforce how many songs you can play with just a simple chord progression.

dcozad999

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #17 on: May 27, 2016, 01:38:56 PM »
Axecleaver - I looked at the Rocksmith game back around Christmas when I almost bought a PS4 for the family. It has excellent reviews.

I decided to wait another year or so before buying the PS4. I love gaming but my son was still a little too young for it to be worth it.

Of course if I did decide to buy Rocksmith I'd have to buy an electric guitar which means even more money. We will see where I'm at at that point. It does look pretty cool.

Adge

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #18 on: May 27, 2016, 02:35:34 PM »
@adge - yeah. I've played around a little the last couple days and fingers definitely hurt, lol. Also, I'm guessing I'm holding the guitar wrong because I'm having a lot of difficulty bending my wrist in a way to where I can get my fingers set up properly.  That will probably be remedied in the first lesson though.

Never a bad idea to check with the teacher and see if there's something you can adjust in your form that will be helpful long-term, but it *really* is weird to hold an instrument until you get used to it. Reaching frets felt nigh on impossible for me at first but, other than making sure I didn't let my wrist "collapse" against the neck, the only thing I really needed was practice. When other people play it looks effortless, but that's because they've spent hundreds or thousands of hours doing it, and it's become natural to them. Until it gets to be natural for you, expect it to feel impossible and also ridiculous. Just go with it and trust that it gets better the more you do it.

(For the record I only know like 2 chords on guitar, but I'm speaking from my experience of learning to play banjo in the last year and a half. Same basic setup so I figure it counts.)

Emg03063

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #19 on: May 28, 2016, 01:45:54 PM »
I echo the sentiment that YouTube is the place to go for lessons.  Just search the songs you want to play.  Odds are someone has done a lesson on it if it's halfway popular.  If not, find an instructor you like online who's teaching style you like and send them a lesson request.  Plenty of YouTube guitar instructors take them.

For foundational exercises, I highly recommend you drop $0.98 for a used copy of this:  http://www.amazon.com/Ernie-Ball-Play-Guitar-Phase/dp/1928571018

Also you'll probably want to learn how to read tablature (explained in Ernie Ball, I think), and get acquainted with www.Ultimate-guitar.com.

I'm 41 and started playing when I was 35, so this is totally doable.  I did take a handful of lessons in person before I discovered YouTube.  Not a bad idea either as a good instructor will identify and correct errors in technique before they become bad habits, but don't pay them to teach you stuff you can learn yourself.



« Last Edit: May 28, 2016, 01:51:14 PM by Emg03063 »

yourusernamehere

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Re: 40 Year-old Who Wants to Learn to Play Guitar
« Reply #20 on: May 29, 2016, 06:19:21 PM »
Great advice here. Also suggest trying to play every day even if only for a few minutes. When learning the more acrobatic-feels no chords, force yourself to do them "right" even if it feels weird and hurry- you'll find later that stringing certain chords together will flow more smoothly if your fingers are in the proper spots. Or maybe you'll do what I do, and play some chords one way when they're followed by certain notes and a different way when they're followed by others. I should note that I'm not very good. :-P