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practice, practice, practice

Jack Campin 19 Apr 11 - 08:01 PM
Smokey. 19 Apr 11 - 08:14 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 19 Apr 11 - 11:59 PM
GUEST,hg 20 Apr 11 - 12:01 AM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 20 Apr 11 - 12:05 AM
Smokey. 20 Apr 11 - 12:07 AM
Smokey. 20 Apr 11 - 01:22 AM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 20 Apr 11 - 01:42 AM
doc.tom 20 Apr 11 - 03:23 AM
Rob Naylor 20 Apr 11 - 04:42 AM
Will Fly 20 Apr 11 - 05:05 AM
GUEST,LDT 20 Apr 11 - 05:07 AM
davyr 20 Apr 11 - 05:18 AM
Musket 20 Apr 11 - 05:27 AM
GUEST,Grishka 20 Apr 11 - 06:37 AM
tritoneman 20 Apr 11 - 07:22 AM
Rob Naylor 20 Apr 11 - 08:12 AM
Smokey. 20 Apr 11 - 09:57 AM
Leadfingers 20 Apr 11 - 11:57 AM
SteveMansfield 20 Apr 11 - 12:46 PM
The Sandman 20 Apr 11 - 12:54 PM
tritoneman 20 Apr 11 - 02:26 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 20 Apr 11 - 02:39 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 20 Apr 11 - 04:29 PM
Smokey. 20 Apr 11 - 04:40 PM
GUEST,Ian Gill 20 Apr 11 - 04:43 PM
Don Firth 20 Apr 11 - 04:52 PM
John P 20 Apr 11 - 04:55 PM
Don Firth 20 Apr 11 - 04:59 PM
GUEST,Ian Gill 20 Apr 11 - 05:04 PM
PoppaGator 20 Apr 11 - 05:15 PM
skarpi 20 Apr 11 - 05:36 PM
Pete MacGregor 20 Apr 11 - 05:51 PM
GUEST,leeneia 20 Apr 11 - 06:41 PM
Smokey. 20 Apr 11 - 06:51 PM
skarpi 20 Apr 11 - 07:16 PM
Leadfingers 20 Apr 11 - 07:40 PM
Smokey. 20 Apr 11 - 08:19 PM
BrooklynJay 20 Apr 11 - 08:28 PM
Don Firth 20 Apr 11 - 09:29 PM
MorwenEdhelwen1 20 Apr 11 - 09:57 PM
BrooklynJay 20 Apr 11 - 11:54 PM
dick greenhaus 21 Apr 11 - 12:33 AM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 21 Apr 11 - 12:33 AM
Bert 21 Apr 11 - 01:11 AM
MorwenEdhelwen1 21 Apr 11 - 01:19 AM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 21 Apr 11 - 01:35 AM
The Fooles Troupe 21 Apr 11 - 01:48 AM
Will Fly 21 Apr 11 - 03:49 AM
Rob Naylor 21 Apr 11 - 05:06 AM
GUEST,leeneia 21 Apr 11 - 10:35 AM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 21 Apr 11 - 11:51 AM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 21 Apr 11 - 11:59 AM
Bert 21 Apr 11 - 04:47 PM
Stringsinger 21 Apr 11 - 05:23 PM
Don Firth 21 Apr 11 - 05:30 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 21 Apr 11 - 05:54 PM
CupOfTea 21 Apr 11 - 06:53 PM
Don Firth 22 Apr 11 - 01:46 AM
GUEST,Ralphie 22 Apr 11 - 02:11 AM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 22 Apr 11 - 01:55 PM
Don Firth 22 Apr 11 - 06:29 PM
Smokey. 22 Apr 11 - 06:45 PM
Smokey. 22 Apr 11 - 06:54 PM
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Smokey. 22 Apr 11 - 07:37 PM
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tritoneman 26 Apr 11 - 06:51 PM
Don Firth 26 Apr 11 - 07:01 PM
tritoneman 26 Apr 11 - 07:14 PM
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Bert 28 Apr 11 - 03:54 PM
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Subject: practice, practice, practice
From: Jack Campin
Date: 19 Apr 11 - 08:01 PM

BBC article on how little talent counts for, compared with hard work:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-13128701


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Subject: RE: practise, practise, practise
From: Smokey.
Date: 19 Apr 11 - 08:14 PM

It seems to be more about correct or appropriate motivation, but very interesting indeed. I do think correct spelling should be encouraged though.


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Subject: RE: practise, practise, practise
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 19 Apr 11 - 11:59 PM

If you find you have the 'gift' or 'talent' for music, by all means, practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise..

....and then some!

GfS
P.S. practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise!!!!!


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,hg
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 12:01 AM

10,000 hours at least to begin with ....( pedant alert....correct my grammar Mr. Day)


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 12:05 AM

Who's Mr. Day?

GfS


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Subject: RE: practise, practise, practise
From: Smokey.
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 12:07 AM

Jolly well said, GfS. The practice of practising is practically the most important thing one can pursue in the pursuit of perfection.


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Subject: RE: practise, practise, practise
From: Smokey.
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 01:22 AM

Actually it's absolutely the most important thing, but that would have ruined the rhythmic symmetry of the alliteration.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 01:42 AM

Besides, Smokey, its fun!
I've got a cool story that just happened this week-end, that would have never happened if I didn't practice like a maniac!
Holler, if you want to hear it!

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: doc.tom
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 03:23 AM

Holler!


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Rob Naylor
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 04:42 AM

Practice IS very important, but having raised 3 children, and also seen numerous other relatives' children developing, there'a also no doubt in my mind that natural talent plays a BIG part in attainment, too.

Don't want to say too much about my kids, but one sailed through school and got top grades at everything, taking exams 2 years early, without doing any work (and I don't mean "apparently"!) while another struggled at school but due to working hard is now on course foa First Class degree.

Now I'm quite clumsy, and have relatively poor hand-eye coordination. I don't doubt that 10,000 hours practice would have improved my soccer skills A LOT, but even 50,000 hours practice wouldn't have got me near the skill level required for Premiership playing, whereas I'm sure some of those playing in the Premiership showed good ball control and excellent skills within a short time of first kicking a ball. Same with guitar. I've put in probably on average an hour a day practice for the last 2 1/2 years, and I'm still nowhere near as good as my nephew was within a month of him first picking up a guitar.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Will Fly
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 05:05 AM

It's the old story of 'nature & nurture', isn't it Rob? (I've also alluded to this in Lizzie's education thread below the line).

We're all genetically different. I've often hesitated at the idea of genetic, inbuilt talent for anything, and I'm still not sure whether I subscribe to that idea totally. But I do believe that our brains work in very individual ways - a midwife friend once said to me that there was nothing as individual as a ward full of new-born babies!

But even so - practise until the day you die... and then some!


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,LDT
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 05:07 AM

I have not natural talent....so EVERYTHING takes practice. Which people who want stuff perfect first time don't understand.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: davyr
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 05:18 AM

I agree with Rob Naylor. The problem is that a lot of people who have put in much hard work to succeed (in anything, not just music) find it difficult to accept that anyone else may have achieved as much with apparently little effort.

Ideally, you need both - talent AND hard work. But despite what the "pulled myself up by my bootstraps" type say, no amount of hard work is ever going to compensate for a lack of talent in the first place.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Musket
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 05:27 AM

I used to be crap at playing the banjo.

So I practiced, practiced, practiced...

Till I was REALLY crap.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Grishka
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 06:37 AM

|: Think about your talents and your chances, be self-critical, ask good teachers, and practise, practice, praktiss :|


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: tritoneman
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 07:22 AM

What a wonderful buzzy feeling it is when you've been working hard practising an instrument, or singing, for an eternity and at last you get some improvememt or begin to overcome a stumbling block......


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Rob Naylor
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 08:12 AM

Will: We're all genetically different. I've often hesitated at the idea of genetic, inbuilt talent for anything, and I'm still not sure whether I subscribe to that idea totally. But I do believe that our brains work in very individual ways...

Having been short-sighted in one eye and long-sighted in the other all my life, there's *definitely* a genetic reason for my relatively poor hand-eye coordination, and a good reason why I often missed catches at cricket as a youngster! So I have no problem with the idea of someone being born with superior hand-eye coordination.

I've also seen at first hand my son's "intuitive" grasp of almost anything cerebral (he was able to solve simultaneous equations in his head at age 5 after seeing me do it on paper...in some work I'd brought home...just the once. And to read Ancient Greek texts almost to the level of his teacher within a month of starting the subject, despite being incredibly lazy about studying).


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Subject: RE: rehearse, rehearse, rehearse.
From: Smokey.
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 09:57 AM

Holler, if you want to hear it!

I slept, now I'm hollerin'. Pray tell, GfS.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Leadfingers
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 11:57 AM

I cant remember the artist , but its a good quote - Someone at a concert made the comment that the artist was very lucky to be able to do what he did - The Reply was " Yes ! And the more I practice the luckier I get!"
Talent IS a Help but without a degree of hard work , it wont lead to anything !


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: SteveMansfield
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 12:46 PM

the more I practice the luckier I get!

More usually attributed, I understand, to golfers - either Arnold Palmer or Gary Player.

Or Samuel Goldwyn.

Or, according to someone on Yahoo Answers (the source that makes Wikipedia look reliable), Harold from Neighbours.

Or maybe it was Louis Armstrong, straight after he said ...


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: The Sandman
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 12:54 PM

yes, but it is important to know how to use practice time in the best way.
practise in periods of 30 to 40 minutes, rather than a hour, in other words 2 times 30 minutes is better than one solid hour.
Isolate problems and practise them slowly and seperately from the rest of the tune.
practise scales and arpeggios, and be prepared to use a metronome as a tool.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: tritoneman
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 02:26 PM

I agree with Good Soldier Schweik's comments about the best way to practise and I would add regularly recording what you're doing and listening back very carefully.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 02:39 PM

You beat me to it, 'tritoneman'!..I was going to say the same thing. It's really great to record about everything you do..then listen to it, to see if there was something that caught your ear, from the LISTENING side of things. I have also found that listening to it, THE NEXT DAY, may be more beneficial, because when listening right after you improvise it, your mind is still in an 'active' mode..and you'll sit there and thing, 'Oh, I could have, would have, should have done this or that', instead of what you did...and listening in a 'passive mind' when you are not, at that moment involved in the actual playing, or composing, may surprise you! You might hear something, that just sounds REALLY great, but weren't listening for originally.

Anyway, I was going to relay my last experience, being as a couple of you 'Hollered' ..and I will, as soon as I get back from doing a previous commitment..which I'm late for now!

Being getting back....

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 04:29 PM

Correction: fourth line down, reads:'..and you'll sit there and thing..'
Should read: 'and you'll sit there and think,..<<(THINK)

Thank you

GfS '


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Smokey.
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 04:40 PM

I can't thing to thave my life, tho I thtick to inthtrumentalth.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Ian Gill
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 04:43 PM

A story from Martin Carthy: Doing a tour of the Republic of Ireland by public transport [only he could do this and tell the tale] MC fell into a session on a Sunday afternoon with an octogenerian and arthritic whistle player. On complimenting the old feller on his playing and attitude MC was told,
"It's easy, you have to love the music. If you don't love the music you won't practice and if you don't practice you won't be any bloody good. "
I've used this for years with students, so thanks Martin...says it all really.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Don Firth
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 04:52 PM

In addition to a stack of technique manuals on the guitar (particular favorites are Aaron Shearer's Classic Guitar Technique, Vol, 1 & 2; Christopher Parkening's Guitar Method, Vol. 1 & 2; and Matteo Carcassi's technique manual (lots of chord and arpeggio exercises, good for accompaniment practice); with frequent dips into The Complete Sor Studies (Mel Bay edition), I have a couple of manuals by Ricardo Iznaola, one full of exercises (Kitharologus) and the other, a small book, hardly more than a pamphlet, entitle On Practicing, that's pricy for its size, but invaluable for its content.

I try to make it a habit to go all the way through Shearer Vol. 1 every few months and get in some practice from Kitharologus every day. In this one, Iznaola has exercises that cover all the basics and then some (!) of anything one might encounter playing classical guitar—or any kind of guitar, for that matter. His instructions for playing the exercises say to use a metronome and when first working on an exercise, put the setting very sl-o-o-o-o-ow, paying close attention to correct finger action and listening carefully to the tone. Once you can do it perfectly, move the metronome setting up a click or two and do it again. Then again. And again.

Then, apply this to any piece of music you're learning, playing it dead slow until you can get through it perfectly without blowing it. Then, move the setting up and do it again. Until finally, you can play the piece about five or ten percent faster than it should be played. Then back it off and play it at the correct speed, secure in the knowledge that you've got a lot in reserve.

May sound unnecessarily tedious for a folk guitarist, but you'd be surprised how much easier it is to learn something like alternate bass picking by this method. Most people start out trying to play this stuff at full speed, wind up tangling their fingers in the strings, and never seem to be able to get beyond the sloppy stage.

If you want to dazzle people with your miraculous speed and precision, the secret is to practice slowly.

Why do I spend a lot of time practicing and playing classical when most of what I do is folk song accompaniment? Because after working on classic guitar pieces (which I can toss in occasionally when I'm performing), playing "Burl Ives Basic" is duck soup!

AND recording practice is an excellent idea and very valuable, painfully revealing of what needs work sometimes, with (in a good year) the occasional potential Grammy winner that you wish you'd caught with your studio condenser mics instead of just on the Zoom H2 at mp3 setting.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: John P
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 04:55 PM

I've spent most of my life being told I'm a "naturally born musician". I'm not really, except for a deep and life-long desire to play music ALL the time. I gained my facility by practice, practice, practice. I know several people I would consider naturally born musicians, but they also have to practice, practice, practice to develop those natural skills.

Practicing a lot is easy when you don't want to do anything else . . .


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Don Firth
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 04:59 PM

Amen!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Ian Gill
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 05:04 PM

Forgive my ignorance Don, but what's the 'Duck Soup' all about ? I thought it was a movie by the Marx Brothers..


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: PoppaGator
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 05:15 PM

I spent many more hours of my youth practicing basketball than music ~ lot of good it did me. I'm not the world's greatest singer/guitarist, but I'm a hell of a lot better as a musician than as an athlete.

Natural talent and physical capability are prerequisites; without basic ability, all the practice in the world can only take you so far.

Of course, your natural gifts don't stand on their own, either; you still need to practice, and to do so constantly. If you slack off, your skills will deteriorate, at least temporarily. And, I'm learning now, some of those skills might never be recoverable once your body has begun the seriously-aging process...


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: skarpi
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 05:36 PM

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practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise practise, practise, practise..

I did practise and prac...... shjæææsssss I need to practise more ....

:O) this is so true ...
kv Skarpi


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Pete MacGregor
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 05:51 PM

And when you've finished practicing, practice some more so it doesn't look as if you've been practicing.

PM


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 06:41 PM

It ain't necessarily so.

If something won't come, it may be you are using bad technique. Or maybe the music just wasn't intended for your instrument. Different instruments have different advantages. For example, a piece with many chromatics is okay for recorder but unfun on the harp.

One day we had a thread where somebody asked how to play 'fast, talking guitar.' Four guys who had probably never tried it said "Practice, practice, practice."

I had talked to a guy who does it, and he told me that extra-large frets are the answer.   So I posted that.

One day I was at a piano lesson and asked about a passage where my fingers just seemed to be stuck. My teacher told me to play the desired note by flipping my finger up in the air. It worked. I wouldn't have thought of that in a hundred years.

You might injure your hands or elbow by believing that practice will let you play something when the truth is that what you want to play just isn't right for you or for the instrument.


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Subject: RE: practise, practise, practise
From: Smokey.
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 06:51 PM

A friend of mine who plays Irish pipes once told me, when he was going through a particularly diligent spate of practise, that he was worried he might be driving the neighbour insane with it. He went next door to ask, and the neighbour said 'No, I don't mind it at all - I particularly like that one where you stop in the middle and shout "BOLLOCKS".


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: skarpi
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 07:16 PM

hahahahaha good one Smokey ...


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Leadfingers
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 07:40 PM

An amateur practices till he knows the song , a semi pro practices until he plays it right and a Professional practices until he CANT play it wrong !!


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Smokey.
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 08:19 PM

Nah - it's more about improving the quality of your mistakes.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: BrooklynJay
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 08:28 PM

Sometimes repetitive practice, while beneficial, may not be the only answer - as leeneia posted above. The piano story reminded me of something that occurred just a few days ago:

Barre chords are all but impossible for me on my guitar. While I can do some individually, integrating them into a song has been pretty much beyond me. My fingers just won't respond to my brain's commands, even with month after month of near-daily practice on certain songs. They can't find the correct strings, or they plant themselves between the strings, etc. Then, purely by accident, I tried something: I closed my eyes. The improvement was like night and day. While I'm far from perfect, at least I have some hope and a different approach to take.

For me, even the barest glimmer of hope is still something. A little bit of light at the end of the tunnel. I mean after all, practice is all fine and well, but wanting to practice is even better.

Jay


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Don Firth
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 09:29 PM

It might be well worth going back and re-reading the article that Jack Campin linked to in the opening post.

Everything I said in my above post presupposes correct technique, otherwise you wind up perfecting your mistakes.

Someone once said: "Genius is 10% inspiration and 90% perspiration."

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 09:57 PM

I agree that practice can do more work than talent.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: BrooklynJay
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 11:54 PM

Don Firth: Someone once said: "Genius is 10% inspiration and 90% perspiration."

I believe that was Thomas Edison.

I wonder what type of guitar he played? ; - )

Jay


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 12:33 AM

Art takes talent, skill takes practice


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 12:33 AM

Leadfingers: "An amateur practices till he knows the song , a semi pro practices until he plays it right and a Professional practices until he CANT play it wrong !!"

Thank you Leadfingers..I LOVE IT!!!!!!

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Bert
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 01:11 AM

From that article


...Dozens of studies have found that top performers - whether in maths, music or whatever - learn no faster than those who reach lower levels of attainment - hour after hour, they improve at almost identical rates.

The difference is simply that high achievers practise for more hours.
...

Personal experience tells me that the above statement is untrue.

I was always good at math without ever having to try, it just came naturally. The practice that teachers forced on me achieved nothing but a hatred of school and teachers and complete boredom in class.

If you are already good at something, mindlessly repeating the simple stuff is not going to help.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 01:19 AM

No, but for those of us who are desperately trying to be good, practising the simple stuff can reinforce our knowledge.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 01:35 AM

HOGWASH!!!! Besides practicing locks in your 'muscle memory'!
That article is screwed up!

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 01:48 AM

It's not always the length of time, but the techniques you use. Focus helps too, as others have mentioned, eg scales, arpeggios, etc, focus on the very basis of what tunes are made of.

When learning medieval sword and shield, I did a couple of tricks. One was to close my eyes and feel what was happening, and visualize internally 'the picture of the little dancing puppet man in my head' doing it. Just tell the little man in your head to do, and it happens - faster than actually reacting to what is happening in front of you, and thinking about it.

Another trick is to 'swap hands'. I used this many years before when doing foil. I also found it helpful when first learning whistle. Putting the other hand in charge means that you use other parts of the brain. Swapping back to the first handedness again means that yet other parts of the brain start to work in a 'meta state' as the brain realizes that it has more than one source of learning the skill. The skill level soon jumps quite a bit, giving a more rapid skill increase to the beginner.

I also swapped hands for a while when first learning the piano accordion, but because of the construction of the instrument, this can only work easily for the smaller boxes. The way the straps are affixed, Chin Masters, etc are fixed, and some things are thus not reachable ... :-) And some instruments are just not physically amenable to this trick....


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Will Fly
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 03:49 AM

When I started to play guitar, I had a work friend who'd been playing longer than me and who had, consequently, advice to give. This was about 1964. He was a great exponent of something that had emerged around 1960 called "psycho-cybernetics". I've never known much about it, but he used to mentally 'play' the guitar in his mind - visualise his hands playing guitar pieces - close his eyes and play a whole piece as though he was seeing it before him.

Nothing clever about that, but I've also done this regularly when learning a new piece, particularly single melody lines on violin or mandolin or tenor guitar, and I have to say it's very useful indeed. I also do the same with the music - close my eyes or physically unfocus, and I can 'see' the music/words on the paper in front of me.

Doesn't stop me from forgetting things every time, though...!


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Rob Naylor
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 05:06 AM

Bert: ...Dozens of studies have found that top performers - whether in maths, music or whatever - learn no faster than those who reach lower levels of attainment - hour after hour, they improve at almost identical rates.

The difference is simply that high achievers practise for more hours.
...

Personal experience tells me that the above statement is untrue.

I was always good at math without ever having to try, it just came naturally. The practice that teachers forced on me achieved nothing but a hatred of school and teachers and complete boredom in class.


Personal experience and my own kids also indicate to me that this isn't true. As I posted above, at age 5, my son watched me manipulating a couple of simulateous equations on paper when I'd brought some work home. Within a few minutes he was able to solve sets of simultaneous equations in his head.

He did stuff like this throughout his childhood, just seeming to pick up anything cerebral without trying. I know how little work he put in on academic stuff.

OTOH, he *did* work hard at improving his rock climbing, and actually got very good at it...but nowhere near as good as a couple of local kids who didn't practice nearly as much as him, but were just "naturals" on rock.

I was Area Youth Coordinator for the British Mountaineering Council for a few years, and could pretty well tell at local and national competitions which kids were going to go on to make a name for themselves as adults while they were in the 10-12 age group. I could see some kids *desperately* practicing but who would "plateau out" several grades below others who practiced less but seemed to have a natural affinity with the rock (or, indoors, plastic).

Practice is certainly very important, but I don't think the breakdown is anywhere near "10% inspiration 90% perspiration". For those at the top of the "natural talent tree" I'd put it at nearer 50/50.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 10:35 AM

Hi, BrooklynJay. Thanks for the tip on barre chords. I'm going to try that.

And F'troupe, I'm going to remember that tip about switching hands, if possible.

Don said, "Everything I said in my above post presupposes correct technique..."   Unfortunately, we all know that the Mudcat is loaded with self-taught people who learned from a Mel Bay book, if that. Telling people who have never been near a teacher to practice, practice, practice may only reinforce bad technique (as Don tells us). It can lead to repetition stress injury.

Good advice I got from a nurse leading an exercise class: "If it hurts, quit!" (This probably doesn't apply to fingertips before they're callused.)


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 11:51 AM

Will Fly: "..... He was a great exponent of something that had emerged around 1960 called "psycho-cybernetics". I've never known much about it, but he used to mentally 'play' the guitar in his mind - visualise his hands playing guitar pieces - close his eyes and play a whole piece as though he was seeing it before him...."

There is an intense music school in Hollywood, Calif. called GIT(Guitar Institute of Technology), started by Howard Roberts, which has now expanded to BIT(Bass), and PIT(Percussion), which stresses a 'cybernetic' technique, in which one rehearses doing the major scales, in all keys, including the different patterns. The object is to have that down so well, that your hands KNOW where to go, as fast as you can think of where you want to send them. This is done by repetition, and the guitarists(and other graduates, Bass and Percussion, and sound engineers coming out of that school, are monsters!...and educated ones! They also have an exercise, in which, the player uses his other forearm, to be in the position, of a guitar neck, and with the other hand, you run your patterns, on your forearm, so you can practice, without a guitar, and/or quietly, when having a guitar, would be impracticable. Their curriculum also includes that the students, besides a 10 hour a day attendance, must teach guitar(on their own time, away from the school, AND be employed as a guitarist!..on top of that, GIT's classes are 6 days a week,(or used to be, I think they still are), and on a quarter system. So, you pretty much have to completely dedicate your entire year, to a very intensive study.

Howard Roberts demonstrating his Gibson Fusion guitar named after him

There are more links to GIT, if you're interested.

Regards Will,

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 11:59 AM

Here's another..maybe Bobert would like this as well..Blues!

Regards All!

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Bert
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 04:47 PM

...Within a few minutes he was able to solve sets of simultaneous equations in his head...

That is kinda what I was saying Rob.

I bet at school he had to sit through tedious hours doing over and over again, what he could already do well.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Stringsinger
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 05:23 PM

I think that the capacity to practice is a talent not possessed by everyone.

The story goes that Arthur Rubenstein practiced upon his briefcase on airline flights.

The psycho-cybernetic idea has merit. There has been a suggestion that sleeping on a skill overnight will enable the player to execute the difficult passage easier.
Motor neural patterns are emphasized in sleep according to this theory.

I think that excessive practice has diminishing returns. The best type of practice is not mass practice (ie: five hours at a time) but distributed practice, 15 minutes in intervals throughout the day. It is the reinforcement of the recall of physical patterns by not skipping a day or hours but physical remembering by refreshing the physical information.

I knew Howard in Hollywood before he started his school and moved away to Coos Bay, Oregon where he later left the planet. The most important aspect of GIT is that it provides an environment to stimulate learning much as a conversational class in a language reinforces vocabulary. Being around dedicated guitarists is key.

One aspect is that it is important to know what you are practicing and for what reason.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Don Firth
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 05:30 PM

Good one, GfS. I've been practicing on my right forearm for years. Sometimes I'll be absent-mindedly playing scales on my forearm when someone will comment, "Somebody steal your guitar, Firth?" Well, it's more productive than twiddling my thumbs, and far more socially acceptable than picking my nose.

Also, mental practice. Visualizing playing something. Or running through the words of a new song I'm learning just before dropping off to sleep. Seems to work. Often, the following morning, I know the song.

There is a reason I keep yammering on in these threads about taking some lessons to begin with, and emphasizing classical guitar. Lessons in order to learn good technique from the start so when you practice, you aren't practicing your mistakes or a flawed technique that's going to eventually stand in your way. And classical, not out of any kind of musical snobbery, but for two reasons:   

First, with a classic guitar teacher, you stand a much better chance of getting a teacher who, themselves, took lessons to begin with, so there will be less likelihood of their passing their own home-brewed technical faults on to you.

And second, the vast majority of folk guitarists I've seen, both well-known and obscure, play with their right-hand fingers rather than using a plectrum. And I've seen some self-taught guitarists use right-hand positions and fingering that are really counter-productive.

One fellow I knew was a good singer, but he was really unhappy with his guitar work, for very good reason. He had a nice, shiny new Martin guitar, but he couldn't get a decent sound out of it. Other people could, but not him. The problem was his right hand position. Self-taught. When he first started to play, he found his thumb and his index finger kept getting in each other's way. So—of the two possibilities, he picked the wrong one. He shifted his hand position, moving his thumb closer to the bridge, which meant that his fingers were more parallel to the strings. In that position, he couldn't get his fingernails to make contact with the strings, and instead of getting a nice, clean, resonant tone out of his pricy guitar, all he could get was a pale-sounding, fleshy "foomp."

He was really unhappy about this, and over a beer one night, he asked me, "Why, fer Chrissake, can't I get a decent sound out of my guitar? God knows, I paid enough for it! You get a nice, clean sound. Why can't I!?"

So I told him. Then, a day or two later, I gave him a freeby lesson in right hand position and finger action. He struggled with a couple of execises I gave him to practice. But—he had been playing that way for years, and it was so ingrained by then, that he wound up swearing a blue streak and going back to his old way. Never did get a decent note out of his expensive, shiny Martin. Whereas, Alice Stuart, a relative beginner at the time, was getting fairly clean, loud sounds out of her $30.00 plywood guitar. Hand position!

Good hand position:   John Williams, classical position.

John Williams again, casual, but still with good right hand position.

Roughly, the position that Gerry was using:    CLICKY.

I don't see how anyone can get a decent sound out of an instrument like this with that hand position, especially a double-strung Baroque guitar or a lute. Not everyone back then used that kind of hand position:    Another CLICKY Much more relaxed and natural.

If you don't have a good classic guitar teacher about, or if you are simply not interested in classic guitar per se, there is a lot of good information on this DVD, along with some guitar calisthenics that would be beneficial for any guitarist, no matter what genre:    Scott Tennant's PUMPING NYLON. Worth the money at twice the price, especially the DVD.

Also works if you're "pumping steel."

Don Firth

P. S. Of course, if all else fails, there's always THIS alternative. . . .


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 05:54 PM

Don Firth: "..There is a reason I keep yammering on in these threads about taking some lessons to begin with, and emphasizing classical guitar..."

Robbie Krieger, of the 'Doors' only started playing electric guitar, AFTER joining the 'Doors'. Up until then, he was 'only' played classical guitar! For what its worth!

Here, Don, another one of the links, I like to turn people onto....

sorta different.....but do you think he practised classical???

And, this guy was only 14 when he did this video!:

remember Pachelbels Canon??...check this one out!

Have fun....and keep practicing!..at least your forearm wont need a fret job!!!

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: CupOfTea
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 06:53 PM

One of my favourite artist inspiration phrases has always been the one from Barbara Smith's Scottish granny:

"It's dogged as does it"

The thread starting article deals with praise and improvement but Lord knows, much of what happens with any craft that people talk about as a "talent" has to start with what nature gives you: and that varies CONSIDERABLY.

I made the switch from concentrating on visual art, where my "talent" was always obvious, and I'd done well enough with putting the hard work in, to concentrating on making music, where I feel sublimely ungifted. Nearly 30 years of dogged determination has brought me to the point of starting to be satisfied with what I can do. It's a different kind of feeling of accomplishment I get from playing something well, than when I'd finished one of my better pieces of artwork.

I'm positive that, among those I think of as musically talented folks, those who are superb are that way because they've practiced (X3 or more...) and worked at broadening the depth of understanding they bring TO the talent they were given. A thing I find encouraging in that article is the idea that perhaps those who are encouraged to TRY things that don't come easy to them can have some success & not feel that pursuing some area is only for those "born to it"

Joanne in Cleveland, who practices daily


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Don Firth
Date: 22 Apr 11 - 01:46 AM

I believe that technique/style is called "shred guitar" and I've heard that it grew out of Heavy Metal rock. Do I think he studied classical? Well, yes and no. Scales and slurs ("hammer-ons" and "pull-offs" in folk guitar jargon) learned and practiced rather diligently, obviously, but a scale is a scale and slurs are slurs, whether they're applied to classical, rock, folk, pop, or whatever. One thing that is pretty evident, however, is that no one, whatever genre of music, develops that kind of facility without "practice, practice, practice."

These two people were actually doing something musical with their shred guitar, but much of it that I've heard reminds me of wisecrack I heard a classic music radio station announcer make. He had just finished playing a popular piece of classical music that is often requested at his station because it has the reputation of being "sexy." Actually, it starts getting pretty damned boring after the first couple of minutes, but it goes on for a quarter of an hour. I'm quite sure that after playing it God knows how many times during his career, the announcer could have gladly murdered the composer. Anyway, when the work finished, the announcer muttered, maybe not realizing the mic was open, "So many notes! So little music!"

This young lady, Yvonne Helkenberg, has obviously put in a fair amount of practice. Lots of notes. But lots of lovely music as well. Fernando Sor's Fantasy and Variations on a Scottish Melody.

Joanne, I have nothing but admiration for people who are accomplished artists in one field, and who don't just rest on their laurels, but go on, striving to conquer others.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Ralphie
Date: 22 Apr 11 - 02:11 AM

Mr Firth....
I'm going to nick your quote...."So many notes, So little music" If you don't mind....Just brilliant, and will come in useful if I ever end up in an Irish session!


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 22 Apr 11 - 01:55 PM

Don, Most of your post I agree with...but both these guys are classically trained.(I checked out their bios). Another name we called, '"So many notes! So little music!"' we call 'finger-shit'.
Not to long ago, I brought into one of my projects, an unbelievably FAST guitarist..BUT, I had to point out to him, that, although he had lightning speed, he lacked expression of feeling and certain continuity, and said absolutely NOTHING! I likened his playing, to someone who had a speech impediment!

Well, we worked on the project, he went his way, and I went mine, with no hard feelings....BUT...everyone who heard him since said he'd gotten a LOT better since working with me.....little consolation for the project, though......
Anyway, I'm glad to be of assistance!

GfS

P.S. Your musical posts are a lot more 'dialed in' than your political!....and a lot more informative, and affective!!!!!
Glad to be exchanging with you on this subject!!!..Regards,(Recently)


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Don Firth
Date: 22 Apr 11 - 06:29 PM

Shred guitar is nothing new. Flamenco guitarists have been doing it for many decades, since they got into "falsettas" (improvisational variations—a chance to show off a bit), not just laying down intricate rhythms for dancers.

Carlos Montoya, shredding the hell out of three flamenco forms:

Tarantas

Farruca

Malagueña.   (A Malagueñas is a dance form [as are the others], upon which Ernesto Lecuona based his well-known piano composition.)

I've seen Montoya in concert several times. When he first walked out on stage, I thought he was carrying the biggest guitar I had ever seen. After the concert, a friend and I went backstage with a batch of other fans to meet him. It turned out that the guitar was normal size. He was a little squirt!

I found that, as spectacular as Montoya's blazingly fast "falsettas" are, an hour and a half of that can get a bit tedious toward the end. Once again, "So many notes! So little music!"

One thing of special interest to me in watching those videos is that in 1960, Bill James, a member of the Seattle Classic Guitar Society came back from his annual trip to Spain with a brand new flamenco guitar, which he brought to one of the meetings. I had a chance to play it some. Incredible instrument! It had a real punch to it. Loud! And it definitely spoke Spanish. But you could mellow it out and it had a very warm, rich tone. Very responsive! For flamenco, it was a natural. It also sounded very good playing classical. And song accompaniment? Great!

I was smitten by an immediate and severe GAS attack (Guitar Acquisition Syndrome)! Bill told me that he'd had it made for him by a young luthier in Madrid named Arcangel Fernandez. Sure that the answer would hurl me into a pit of despair—such a guitar must have cost Bill his first-born son and the deed to his ranch—I asked him how much he had paid for it. After diddling with the exchange rate for pesetas, it worked out to—$100 American!!!

Bill helped me order one. And a year and a half later, it arrived from Madrid by air freight. When I first took it out of the case and tuned it up, it smelled of new varnish and sounded kind of puny and raw, but within a couple of weeks of playing it in, it found its voice and was as full and rich as Bill's was. Oh, yes. Shortly after Bill bought his, Fernandez had raised his price. Mine cost me a massive $116.16 (66666 ad infinitum). With import duty and air freight, the total cost of the guitar worked out to about $175.00.

I have other guitars, but the "Arcangel" is the flagship of the fleet and the one I've used the most for concerts and such.

It was not long after I got my Arcangel that I heard that Carlos Montoya and several other well-known flamenco guitarists had traded in their instruments on new Arcangel Fernandez-made guitars. I don't know if Fernandez is still alive, but last I heard, his guitars are in great demand and he was back-ordered for ten years.

(That's very nice, Firth, but what's this all about?)

When I pulled up Montoya on YouTube, I noticed that the guitar he's playing is a duplicate of mine. I recognized the shape of the headstock, which, among Spanish luthiers, is a sort of trademark (except that Montoya opted for one-to-one ratio wooden push-pegs—absolute bitch to tune—and I opted for modern geared tuners), and the white çejilla (capo) that Fernandez includes with his flamenco guitars. Turns out that the 1961 Arcangels are rare, much sought after, and worth a bloody fortune! I'm afraid to take it out of the house!!

On matters of speed and technique, it's nice to be able to make the strings smoke like that. But for musical reasons and reasons of taste, chose not to.

####

Well, whether my musical posts are more "dialed in" than my political is open to debate. But that's a matter for other threads.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Smokey.
Date: 22 Apr 11 - 06:45 PM

I seem to remember that flamenco guitars are made with very thin tops to accentuate the attack of the notes and provide more volume, but as a consequence have a much shorter tonal lifespan than standard classicals.


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Subject: RE: practife, practife, practife
From: Smokey.
Date: 22 Apr 11 - 06:54 PM

What do you make of these, Don?


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Don Firth
Date: 22 Apr 11 - 07:17 PM

I don't know for sure, Smokey, but I've heard the same thing.

The top is shaved a few molecules thinner than that of a classic, and they are generally a bit more lightly built, but after fifty years of playing, mine is still in good shape and sounding great. Only issue with it is that the weather got to it sometime in the late 1970s and a 2 ½ inch crack appeared along the grain in the lower bout. No actual structural damage, and I plays fine, but I didn't know of any guitar repair folks in town that I would trust it to.

But just a couple of months ago, someone told me about Catherine (Cat) Fox, who runs Sound Guitar Repair in Seattle. She came highly recommended, so I sent a small travel guitar to her to have it properly set up. She did a crackerjack job of it (she called me on the phone a couple of times to make sure she was setting it up exactly as I wanted it), and I've heard nothing but praise about her. I might have her take a shot at it.

Flamenco guitarists tend to play a guitar really hard, pounding the blazes out of it, and I've heard that they can pretty well wear out a guitar over time. But although I play a bit of flamenco (when I've taken my vitamins and I have a good tail-wind), some classic and a lot of song accompaniment doesn't seem to bother it a bit.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Smokey.
Date: 22 Apr 11 - 07:37 PM

Hmm, possibly the extra battering accounts for it more than the construction. 50 years is a decent age. I hope you get it sorted out successfully.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 23 Apr 11 - 04:00 AM

Don Firth: "Well, whether my musical posts are more "dialed in" than my political is open to debate. But that's a matter for other threads."

I agree with your info..and I know about 'shredding' and 'slur' picking, among others. In the eighties I jammed with a guy, Frank Gamboli, from Australia who was a monster at it. Met him from a mutual. 20 year friend of mine. Perhaps you have heard of him. I personally have some 'weird' techniques of my own..being as the 'geography' on my present guitars are all upside-down and backward. However, my old 335, was strung the opposite way, so I learned to play both ways. With my fat strings at the bottom, I can strum some VERY percussive, and syncopated, bouncy rhythms, at light speed...without losing the groove, including some African/Cuban/Brazilian beats..that would be IMPOSSIBLE strung the other way! Tricked Celtic beats work, too...not to mention some pretty cocky Chicago jazz shuffles..........and of course 'Kumbayah'..which I can't recall ever playing, in my life! When I've played Bluegrass type stuff, I developed a cool flat-picking, that is so quick, most people think I'm, finger-picking....and finger-pickers are tripped out........now to the 'IMPORTANT' part......."
Don: "Well, whether my musical posts are more "dialed in" than my political is open to debate. But that's a matter for other threads."
Jolly well Ol' Chap, and don't forget to bring your helmet, and extra padding!..i wouldn't want you to get all bruised up!!

Regards.........until the next time.......at sunrise......10 paces....etc, etc....

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: threelegsoman
Date: 23 Apr 11 - 04:09 AM

At a recent meeting of the newly formed Isle of Man Autoharp Group, one of our members quoted the following:

At the age of 93, Pablo Cassals was being interviewed and stated that he practised at least 3 hours a day. The interviewer asked incredulously, "You still practise after all these years?" "Yes," replied Pablo, "and do you know, I think I have almost got it right now!"


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Don Firth
Date: 23 Apr 11 - 03:08 PM

A slightly "folk processed" anecdote from another context:

Waldo Doofnagel is traveling on a jumbo jet flying over the Atlantic and he notes that the elderly gentleman sitting next to him looks quite familiar, but he can't quite place him. He opens a casual conversation with him and discovers that he is a world famous pianist that he has seen a few times on television. He is still doing concert tours.

In the course of the ensuing conversation, Waldo learns that this august keyboard virtuoso still practices four hours a day, every day. Same comment:   "You still practise after all these years?"

"Of course," says the pianist.

"But WHY?" asks a mystified Waldo.

"Well, let me explain it this way:    what do you think our altitude is right now?"

Mystified at the apparent change of subject, Waldo answers, "Well, I don't know. About 35,000 feet, I think."

"That's high enough!" says the pianist. "Tell the pilot to turn off the engines!"

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Smokey.
Date: 23 Apr 11 - 03:33 PM

Excellent, Don.
Treading water, perhaps?


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Alan Whittle
Date: 23 Apr 11 - 03:42 PM

One of my favourite lines from the tv programme Porridge:=

Prison Doctor: Are you a practicing homosexual?
Ronnie Barker: What with these feet...?


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Don Firth
Date: 23 Apr 11 - 04:48 PM

The late, great coloratura soprano, Beverly Sills, was a very wise woman. In regard to practice, she said, "If I miss practice for a day, I notice it. If I miss practice for three days, my audience notices it!"

Shortly after she retired from performing, a television interviewer (Dick Cavett? Can't remember) said, "Lots of people are asking why you decided to retire when you still sound great."

She responded, "Well, recently I've found that singing is not quite as easy as it was when I was younger. Recently I've noticed things about my own voice, and I prefer to retire before my audiences begin to notice it, too. Let's put it this way:   I'd rather have people ask, 'Why did she retire?' than to have them ask, 'Why doesn't she retire?'"

Very smart lady!

Don Firth

P. S. When she retired, she became General Manager of New Your City Opera, and she did a lot of good things there, including discovering several young American singers and helping give their careers a real boost.

P. P. S.   A couple of other good comments from Ms. Sills:
"There are no shortcuts to any place worth going."

"You may be disappointed if you fail, but you're doomed if you don't try."

"You don't always get what you ask for, but you never get what you don't ask for . . . unless it's contagious!"


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: banjoman
Date: 25 Apr 11 - 11:48 AM

I have been "Practicing" now for over 60 years and have now become very good at practicing. I have always preferred to play at sessions and with other musicians as its from these that I have really learnt


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 25 Apr 11 - 12:21 PM

Banjoman: "I have been "Practicing" now for over 60 years and have now become very good at practicing. I have always preferred to play at sessions and with other musicians as its from these that I have really learnt."

...and just think, if you weren't practicing all that time, the other musicians might not have let you sit in with them!

By the way, Don, I've been diggin' your posts!

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: banjoman
Date: 26 Apr 11 - 05:34 AM

Well said although my comment was a bit tongue in cheek. I do think its important to know your song or music before playing it out. I sometimes feel a bit miffed when people insist on having their words in front of them before singing songs which they have performed loads of times. Still I suppose its horses for courses?


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,GUEST, Dave in Michigan
Date: 26 Apr 11 - 02:59 PM

I agree with the anonymous Irish player mentioned above in connection with Carthy, but I'd rather say "you've got to love the music enough to explore (play) it a lot" rather than use the word "practice", which has (for me) too strong an implication of mere mindless repetition. ("Strive to play the maximum number of notes per second. That way, you gain the admiration of the incompetent." - anon)

From an article by Ericsson, Prietula and Cokely:

"The famous violinist Nathan Milstein wrote: "Practice as much as you feel you can accomplish with concentration. Once when I became concerned because others around me practiced all day long, I asked [my mentor] Professor Auer how many hours I should practice, and he said, 'It really doesn't matter how long. If you practice with your fingers, no amount is enough. If you practice with your head, two hours is plenty.'"


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: tritoneman
Date: 26 Apr 11 - 06:51 PM

'If you practise with your fingers, no amount is enough. If you practise with your head, two hours is plenty'.


Dave in Michigan, that sounds like incredibly wise advice. I've been playing the guitar for decades and I wish I'd heard that advice years ago. Still, it's never too late! I shall try it.

Graham


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Don Firth
Date: 26 Apr 11 - 07:01 PM

If one practices with "mere mindless repetition," then it is not the practice per se that is mindless, it's the would-be musician who is doing the "practicing." If you're "practicing" without a specific goal in mind, and if you are not watching and listening closely as you practice to see if you are approaching the desired goal, then you may as well just sit with your instrument leaning against your knee while staring absently at the wall, drooling, and picking your nose.

Once again, I recommend Ricardo Izaola's little manual, On Practicing. It's a mere 24 pages and you can read it in ten minutes, BUT it merits going over paragraph by paragraph and sentence by sentence to see just exactly what he is saying about WHAT to practice and HOW to practice it. And coming back to it often.

Iznaola has done a second book that really gets down to the nitty-gritty:    Kitharologus. But be warned. This is only for the SERIOUS. The idea behind this manual of exercises is as follows (quoting Iznaola):   "Guitar technique is made up of a limited number of procedures with an unlimited number of applications. Therefore, a sound technical methodology is not one that tries to cover all possible forms of a given procedure, but rather one that identifies and trains the essential mechanism which makes the procedure, in all its forms, possible".

With each exercise, he tells you what you are trying to achieve and how you should proceed in order to achieve it. This presupposes that there is an ACTIVE, ATTENTIVE MIND connected to the fingers.

Practice can be very enjoyable, provided you start with a clear idea of what you want to accomplish ("My 'Travis picking' is really ragged. I want to get it to where I can playing it smoothly and cleanly."). And then you practice it, playing it slowly, making sure that each note is crisp and clean, then you very gradually increase the speed, watching very carefully to make sure that it stays crisp and clean. This may take a few weeks, working at it a bit each day.

AND STAYING AWAKE AND ALERT, WATCHING AND LISTENING WHILE YOU DO IT.

How serious are you about having the fun and satisfaction of playing well? It's up to you.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: tritoneman
Date: 26 Apr 11 - 07:14 PM

What you're saying Don, to me, makes absolute sense and makes practice a productive and rewarding exercise. In many ways it expands on the earlier comment about practising with your fingers or head.

Graham


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 27 Apr 11 - 11:59 AM

I had a 'brain-fart' of an idea.....and being as this is my 'online family' (even my own rarely takes my advice, either..but wants me to get them out of the jams they get into..), how about this: We set a time, and for those who have 'Yahoo Messenger' (for those who don't, its an easy down load)..we get a 'conference room' and I can play you some original material, some even live, and others can share some of theirs?
I know that a few of you have expressed interest in hearing some of it, and I'd be game for that!...Let's get feedback....sorta a online concert, 'Free'....and I'm not sure its been done like this for Mudcatters, before..online!..How 'bout it???

GfS

P.S. That way we can hear stuff, without posting it online...and I figure that most everybody their will be 'Catters', though, its open to all.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Dave in Michigan
Date: 28 Apr 11 - 01:57 PM

I just think someone should point out that "practice" (and, a fortiori, "practice, practice, practice") fits best with the often unarticulated assumption that there is a single right style/version, and that one's success (or lack thereof) in approaching/attaining it will be readily apparent. [Overstated for clarity and brevity]

Authors of textbooks and academic papers tend (IMO) to come from (or identify with) backgrounds favoring this view, like classical music, where the mantra has mostly been "_come scritto_" - play it as written (and we also shouldn't overlook Morris musician William Kimber's recorded admonition "these are the notes you play, and you don't play no others"). One reason they tend to get quoted (as I quoted Ericsson quoting Milstein quoting Auer) is that doing so appears to carry more weight than just saying "well, I (Dave) think ...", but then the assumption that one should know exactly what one wants gets passed along also.

I respectfully disagree with Don (and others). When I practice _and am not in a hurry_, I try not to "know what I want", except that I want to become more familiar with the music so that my unconscious can later tease as-yet-unsuspected possibilities out of it. Over the years this has become easier, but it's still often painfully slow, though rewarding when the possibilities finally emerge.

Of course, living in Contemporary Western Civilization, I often _am_ too much in a hurry, and then, like everyone else, I have to do "mindless" (actually differently mindful) repetition, because the stupid neurons do what they want, not what I want them to do. This is usually because there is a gig coming up, and I need, reluctantly, to sacrifice creativity for mere competence, i.e. not blowing it. Shameful, I know.

This is more verbose than I wanted it to be.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 28 Apr 11 - 01:59 PM

So, as this thread sinks into the abyss, I found it interesting that, with so many arguing about practicing, and/or reading music, that apparently no one wants to hear each others music!! Damn right comical!!!
Hey, Rowan Atkinson , you got an audience here!!!...and you don't even have to say a word!!!

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Don Firth
Date: 28 Apr 11 - 02:56 PM

There seems to be the misconception that if one plays classical music, or studies music theory, or practices in the manner that classical musicians generally practice, this somehow limits what they can do. That they are bound by arbitrary rules (such as "play only as written") and their creativity and personal expression will be stifled.

This seems to be a common misconception, especially among "folkies."

But it's patently mistaken.

I can cite dozens of examples of musicians who studied classical music—and can play it—whose main field of endeavor is some other field of music.

But one should do, for those who are familiar with him:   Wynton Marsalis. He is thought of mainly as a jazz trumpeter, and one of the best in the business. But I have also heard him play a couple of classical trumpet concertos, and he brought them off as well as, if not better than, other trumpet players I've heard. AND, Marsalis is a teacher. At Juilliard!

As far as guitar is concerned, I have taken lessons from three different classical guitar teachers and I have participated in two master classes, one by Pepe Romero, and the other, a week long seminar, given by Aaron Shearer. They each had a somewhat different approach and each on emphasized different things, including aspects of hand positions and finger action. Similar, but not all the same.

And I have also taken lessons from three different voice teachers, and each of them had quite different approaches to vocal technique. And, I might add, they were all sympathetic with my preference for singing folk songs and left the matter of "interpretation" up to me.

No. Not nearly as rigid as many people seem to want to think.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Bert
Date: 28 Apr 11 - 03:54 PM

Here's a snippet from this thread


Subject: RE: Practice tip, odd but verrry effective.
From: Bert - PM
Date: 02 Nov 01 - 06:48 PM

Well thank you VERY much. I've managed all these years without practicing and now you've gone and made it look easy. Now I've just gotta TRY this, 'cos I've no excuses left.


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Subject: RE: Practice tip, odd but verrry effective.
From: Rick Fielding - PM
Date: 03 Nov 01 - 11:30 AM

Bert..Do Not attempt these things at home! T'will destroy your naive charm, and songwriting innocence!! Love your CD by the way.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 28 Apr 11 - 04:05 PM

Don, I started playing guitar YEARS before I was turned onto some techniques from GIT....and what is ironic, is that I used those same techniques, but transferred them to keyboards! Now, I have a rather unique sound, being as my LEFT hand, on the keyboards, would be my finger-picking hand, on the guitar(because I also play left handed), and my right hand does the stuff that would be the equivalent, of 'lead' playing...but it's now all on the keyboards!
(Boy, I used a lot of 'Q's on that one)....
So, when I compose, I now use a rather different style on keyboards/piano, than what I used to try for, on guitar..BUT, a lot of what is coming out, is guitar licks due to the nature of it all, but on the keys!
Conversely, the guitar really opens up, once one can visualize the piano keyboards, on the fretboard!

Oh well, in either situation, I find that only buffoons scoff at practicing! Once you think you get 'bored', there is ALWAYS more to learn!...AND, as I've told people through the years, and not only in regards to music, "Once you think you know it all, you are living in the past!"

Nice to read from you!....(of course that means in the music department)..wink!

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Dave in Michigan
Date: 28 Apr 11 - 04:33 PM

GfS wrote "with so many arguing about practicing,"

Umm, isn't that because that's the original thread subject? By all means start a thread for your topic.

Don, I believe that people are very diverse psychologically, and tend to self-aggregate with others of like preferences. This often, but not always, leads to them exploring a narrower range of possibilities than they otherwise might, but it's not exactly imputed causation on my part of the kind you seem to attribute to others. (Out of time, gotta go now.)


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 28 Apr 11 - 04:50 PM

Dave in Michigan: "Umm, isn't that because that's the original thread subject? By all means start a thread for your topic."

You REALLY got to be hard pressed to enter a post, for that bit of nonsense!

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Don Firth
Date: 28 Apr 11 - 09:15 PM

Rambles. . . .

When I was in my early teens, I used to turn the radio to a classical music station when I was doing my homework (yes, back in antediluvian times, high school teachers assigned homework!), because it made for a pleasant background and it wasn't as distracting as some of the pop music stations that my confrères chronically listened to. So out of the corner of my ear, I absorbed a lot of full, rich sounds and a familiarity with classical music and those who composed it.

A couple of older friends developed an interest in opera, to the extent that they started taking some singing lessons. Naught would have it but that I do the same.

Tenors were the big interest. But when my voice went through the Big Change at around twelve or thirteen, I dropped from a boyish treble to something akin to a frog in a rain barrel. A big frog in a rain barrel. People used to tell me that I should become a radio announcer in a day when radio announcers all had big, deep, resonant voices. No way in hell was I going to attain the lofty ranges of an operatic tenor. Mrs. Bianchi had me tentatively diagnosed as a bass-baritone, or perhaps a genuine basso. I took lessons from Mrs. B. for about a year and a half. The first time. I took more lessons from her later.

Then, in my second year at the University of Washington, majoring in English Lit. with an eye toward becoming a writer and eventually writing the Great American Novel (or due to a sneaking interest in science fiction, the Great Galactic Novel), I double-dated with a friend and wound up meeting a couple of young women living in the women's residence halls who were interested in folk music. One (Lynn) played a tenor banjo, and the other (Claire) was just about to inherit a fine old parlor guitar from her grandmother. Claire and I wound up "going steady," as the expression went.

I watched as Claire taught herself guitar chords out of a book and worked hard at learning songs out of a newly purchased paperback copy of A Treasury of Folk Songs, compiled by Sylvia and John Kolb. Looked like fun and since I could sing a bit, I bought myself a cheap but playable guitar and a copy of the same book. Claire taught me my first guitar chords.

A major step in my direction in life took place when Claire and I went to see an informal concert by local folk singer Walt Robertson. Two and a half or three hours sitting there fascinated by the songs and stories that Walt performed, like a minstrel of centuries gone by, holding the audience, including Claire and me, completely enthralled. I said, "I want to do that!" and redoubled my efforts on the guitar and in learning songs—including looking up a lot of the songs that Walt had sung that evening.

I took about six months' guitar lessons from Walt, and then he recommended that I study some classic guitar. He wasn't gung-ho on classic guitar, but since I wanted to continue taking lessons and Walt felt he had taught me all he could, at least a classic guitar teacher would have me using my right hand fingers rather than insisting that I play with a pick.

In addition to wanting to improve my versatility for song and ballad accompaniments, I became interested in classic guitar per se. Then, after doing some performing and being well received, I decided that if people like Burl Ives, Richard Dyer-Bennet, Pete Seeger, Ed McCurdy, et al could make a career out of singing traditional songs, why couldn't I?

This, incidentally, was before the Kingston Trio's breakthrough with "Tom Dooley" in 1958, so the "Folk Revival" (Great Folk Scare) hadn't really started, at least around here.

Problem! I knew so little about the mechanics of music that I had to rely on the chords in song books or have someone more knowledgeable than me show me what chords to play to accompany a given song. I needed to be able to work that out for myself! So I decided to return to the university, only this time as a music major. I did. And I learned music theory, in addition to continuing my guitar lessons and taking more singing lessons.

I started getting gigs. After a number of performances here and there, I was asked to do an educational television show. Then the gigs came thick and fast. I was already established, at least locally, just prior to the Kingston Trio's first big hit. So between performing and doing a bit of teaching on the side, suddenly I was making a fairly decent living at it.

But—   During the time that I was taking classical guitar lessons, and especially when I was studying music formally at the University of Washington and later at the Cornish School of the Arts in Seattle, I had folkies beating me on the head and carping at me that all this formal studying of music would force me into following a lot of rigid rules and make it impossible for me to do folk music. As if I couldn't pick and choose what parts of the formal training I found useful for what I wanted to do.

And no, it would NOT make my sound like Richard Dyer-Bennet. With my voice, no way in hell could I sound like Richard Dyer-Bennet, even if I wanted to!

It didn't take me long to begin to suspect that the ones who were giving me the most grief about my music study were guys who didn't really believe what they were saying to me, but actually felt that what I was doing gave me too much of a "competitive edge" when it came to getting singing jobs!   In fact, I was told this by a friend who had heard someone say exactly that!

Interesting!

By the way, I noted that some of those who warned me that classical training would ruin me were not above trying to copy some of my guitar accompaniments. . . .

For various reasons (not the least of which is that I'm pushing eighty), I've essentially retired from performing, but as long as my voice holds out, I want to start recording many of the songs I've learned over the years. However, I am comforted and gratified by the knowledge that if I wanted to start doing concerts again, a couple of telephone calls are all it would take to get the wheels rolling.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Don Firth
Date: 28 Apr 11 - 11:19 PM

I don't want to indicate that there were great armies of folk music enthusiasts who kept giving me Big Do-Do about classical training and practice, there were only a couple around here and a couple passing through. But here's a really cute one:

One of them told me that he had never taken any music lesson, couldn't read music, and had never looked at a guitar technique book of any kind, he had figured out chord positions partly by watching other people but mostly by himself.

Later, his sister told me that he had taken some nine years of violin lesson when he was a kid, read music quite fluently, and had a whole stack of guitar manuals under his bed.

He apparently wanted everyone to think that, as far as folk singing was concerned, he had sprung full grown from the forehead of Zeus—or perhaps Orpheus.

Like I say:   Cute!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 28 Apr 11 - 11:50 PM

Don: "It didn't take me long to begin to suspect that the ones who were giving me the most grief about my music study were guys who didn't really believe what they were saying to me, but actually felt that what I was doing gave me too much of a "competitive edge" when it came to getting singing jobs!   In fact, I was told this by a friend who had heard someone say exactly that!
Interesting!"

I found that VERY interesting as well! It sounds to me, like the same kind of minds, that would be very easily co-opted politically(as in other areas), and harp on about issues, on a lazy, shallow level!!!
Note: I am not in any way referring to our earlier discussions, but merely pointing out that these minimalist wannabes, psychic vampires would sponge off you, and then try to keep you down, as to not let you shine too far above the product of their own lame laziness!! Frankly, certain 'folkies' are just about that..and hung up in the past....to wit, the last time they learned anything new!!

Very interesting!!
Hey, thanks for the bit of history!

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: YorkshireYankee
Date: 29 Apr 11 - 05:09 PM

I've got a cool story that just happened this week-end, that would have never happened if I didn't practice like a maniac!
Holler, if you want to hear it!


GfS, I don't think you ever got 'round to telling us this story -- even though a couple of folks did "holler". How 'bout it?


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Alan Whittle
Date: 29 Apr 11 - 05:45 PM

That was brilliant Don. Write some more about the stuff you've done. Have you written a book about it? I love it when musicians and folksingers talk about the life they've lived and how they startd and then sustained themselves. It makes me feel not quite so isolated.

Most people in England do the folk music as a hobby - its great to hear about someone doing it as seriously as I've done it myself - not because it was easy, or because there was mass approval - but because no one else was going to tell you what your life was about.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: Don Firth
Date: 01 May 11 - 04:43 PM

Thanks for the kind words, Alan!

I am indeed writing a book about my experiences. It started out to be a history of folk music activity in the Pacific Northwest from the early 1950s up to as far as I could take it. The motivation was that in almost all of the books I've read about the Folk Revival ("Great Folk Scare") in the U. S., the Pacific Northwest has been totally ignored. New York, Boston, a quick tour through Chicago, and on west to Berkeley/San Francisco, apparently unaware that there was anything going on here worth mentioning—although quite a number of New Yorkers, Bostonites, Chicagoese, and Bay Area denizens passed through here, and were sometimes surprised to find that Seattle is a city of considerable size, complete with skyscrapers, a world-class symphony orchestra, opera and ballet companies, theater companies, early-music groups, museums, art galleries, and a major state university, not just an isolated clump of log cabins and igloos as they had apparently thought.

As I got to assembling my notes, it occurred to me that writing a history of the "folk scene" in the Pacific Northwest would be a monumental task! And it would involve an incredible amount of research, which I just wasn't up for, since this was going to be a sort of spare-time project. I decided to make it a "memoir" or collection of personal reminiscences, rather than a comprehensive history. Besides, I subsequentlylearned that two other people were working on formal histories. One was John Ross (a Mudcatter) who tragically passed away of a heart attack recently, leaving his work unfinished; and Kurt Armbruster, who's book is now in the hands of a publisher and will be released this coming October. John, Kurt, and I compared notes frequently, fact-checking each other, and generally agreed that we were not stepping on each others' toes, but that our books would actually enhance each other.

My problem right now is that I have a first draft of over 125,000 words, and I'm only up to the 1962 Seattle World's Fair and all the folk music activity that happened then (busy time for all of us!). Much more to come!

Once I get the first draft finished, I'm going to have some extensive editing to do if I expect any publisher to give it a serious look. Kurt (bess his heart!) has recommended a couple of publishers he's had good responses from and thinks might very well be interested in what I'm writing.

Much work to do!

And THIS, along with wanted to do some CDs! Which is why I have to keep practicing diligently.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Dave in Michigan
Date: 02 May 11 - 03:44 PM

GfS wrote "You REALLY got to be hard pressed to enter a post, for that bit of nonsense!"

Umm, I didn't [enter a post for that bit of nonsense]. My main point was the third paragraph, which was addressed to someone else.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Alan Whittle
Date: 02 May 11 - 04:19 PM

GFS and dave from Michigan. Give us a clue - what are you talking about.

Don - thats it! steady practice and you'll get that third chord in no time!

I've never written a book, but it sounds to me like you need to face up to facts. What we are talking about is a series of books. or perhaps one book in several volumes.


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: YorkshireYankee
Date: 03 May 11 - 05:11 PM

GFS, did you see my previous post?

I've got a cool story that just happened this week-end, that would have never happened if I didn't practice like a maniac!
Holler, if you want to hear it!


GfS, I don't think you ever got 'round to telling us this story -- even though a couple of folks did "holler". How 'bout it?


I really would like to hear the story you referred to...


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Dave in Michigan
Date: 05 May 11 - 03:33 PM

[ Hi, Vikki (YY); long time no see :-) ]


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 06 May 11 - 02:21 PM

YorkshireYankee, Oh, I'm sorry that I didn't get back with you sooner!..Yeah, I was supposed to do a gig, to a show(a play), in which I normally don't do. It was for before the play, while people mulled around in the lobby, and yakked, and socialized a bit. First of all, I usually WILL NOT do 'background music', for such events, but normally will only, at present, do concerts, but the owners of the Arts Counsel, asked me if I would. So, I told them 'OK'.
Now when they 'proposed' it, they told me that the gig was at 7:00 Friday night...but in the course of my conversation with her, she changed it to Saturday...but then corrected herself again, and said Sunday. I'm figuring, 'Jeez, what a dingbat!'...but then she went onto say that the show was running a week, and she had her days mixed up, being as she had another musician scheduled for Friday. (An internationally known pianist with a PhD in music, who I've heard before, even done another gig, that he and I were both playing, but separately).
Now a lot of times I would play guitar, but as of recent, I've been concentrating on keyboards, and have composed a somewhat 'major piece, which in it's short form, runs about a half an hour. Normally I use my own keyboards, being as they have the voices I use, which is a combination of mallets and strings...and being as my keyboards is a pain in the ass to move up from the basement studio(it weighs about 300 pounds), I reluctantly said I'd do it...though, inside me, I wasn't that thrilled....
So, Sunday, during the day, I was en route to my son's house, to refinish his dining-room table, and was wearing, my work clothes, which were all dusty and dirty, for doing that kind of work, and on the way, I had to pass the Arts Counsel building, because its right on the way....While I'm driving up the hill(highway), I'm deciding whether or not to stop in, and check out their piano,, which was a grand, being as I wasn't going to be bringing my own...So, I figured, why not, at least I could, tell them that I would be back later, just in case I was interrupting them, because they weren't really expecting me, at this time. I decided that the courteous thing to do was set up a time for me to come back, on the way from my son's, to check out their piano.
When I got to the door, this was the conversation, verbatim.

Me: " Hi, I just stopped by on the way to my son's to check out the piano for tonight, and thought, rather than just popping in to play it, perhaps I'd let you know that I can be back within the hour..if that's OK?"

"Are You here to play"

"You mean right now?...I just thought I'd check it out"

"You're playing aren't you?"

"Well, yeah, I figured that I'd check it out first, is that OK?"

"Do you know what time it is?"

No, not right now, but I was coming back at 7:00"

"Seven??...today the show starts at one"

"One??!!??..what time is it now???"

"One thirty."

"Holy shit!..i was told seven..."

That was Friday, and Saturday"

Jeez...umm..OK"....

And at that, dusty cloths and all I went to the piano, and started 'noodling' (a term I use for just playing nothing in particular, but just improving)...then 'noodling' off my normal piece...then playing ferociously,..then flat out SMOKING!! I cannot recall playing with that kind of energy on the piano(maybe on guitar) in my life!!..So much, that some 'well-to-do' person came up while I was playing, and wanted to talk to me right then and there...but I wasn't going to stop, and told here, "Later, when I'm done..I'm playing". I think that person was being blown away, and wanted to talk to me about more gigs.
Anyway, there were times, I was feeling like outside my own body, just observing stuff, that frankly, I didn't know I could do!!...So smokin' hot was it, that the Arts Counsel people held up the play's 'start time', while a crowd just was gathered around amazed(as was I).

Later in the week, a lady came up to me, and said she had no idea, that I played like that..that she had heard me before, but this not like this!....

Moral of the story: I blew in cold, and smoked beyond belief, because of....you guess it;... practice, practice, practice!!!

You just would have had to been there....runs..long runs, of 64ths...AND 128s!!!..and not one 'clam'!

When I think about it now, it may not seem like such an amazing story, but, in a semi-formal, to formal setting, this person, in dusty work clothes blew the lid off!!!!!..and smoked their asses!

You just had to be there!!!

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 06 May 11 - 02:31 PM

Oh yeah, I forgot the 'P.S.'..

I was invited back to play again, later in the week!

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 06 May 11 - 02:32 PM

..and at that..100!!

Oh, and this time I was dressed appropriately.

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: YorkshireYankee
Date: 06 May 11 - 10:00 PM

GfS: Great story -- absolutely brilliant! Thanks for sharing it.

Dave from Michigan: afraid I know more than one Dave in Michigan. Can you give me a hint as to which one you are?


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 06 May 11 - 10:39 PM

Yankee, You're welcome...After I typed it, I thought maybe it was sorta stupid..so, I'm glad you liked it!...until then, or next time,.: practice, practice, practice..!!

Regards,
GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Dave in Michigan
Date: 09 May 11 - 02:49 PM

YY - that's hard to do because a) I don't remember _exactly_ when you moved away, and b) i don't want to blow my (worthless) cover to everyone else. Try the following:

- If you were among those dancing rapper at Ruth's once-every-four -years birthday celebration on a Feb 29 in the Michigan Union, I was the one playing (and the music was fast enough, despite Rhonda's initial misgivings).

- You once asked me, after I returned from a week at Augusta/ Elkins, how it had been, and I replied with the single word "challenging" (because I had been studing a style completely new to me, and on an instrument I didn't often play). Your reply was "well, if it was challenging for _you_ ...".

- I used to enounter you in Contra lines in places like Lovett Hall (sad loss, the use of that hall).

-D


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: YorkshireYankee
Date: 13 May 11 - 09:31 AM

Dave -- sounds like your memory is much better than mine! I can think of a Dave you might be, but am not sure... perhaps you could e-mail me?
My @ddress is vikki "at" srama "dot" demon" dot" co "dot" uk.

(Sorry to take over the thread, but I can't PM Dave in Michigan.)


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 13 May 11 - 04:51 PM

Cute!

Be cool, if we could do messenger, and I could play audio for ya'!(that is if you were so inclined)...

GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 14 May 11 - 03:50 PM

ohhh, Yorkshire Yankee???????you still on?


GfS


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Subject: RE: practice, practice, practice
From: YorkshireYankee
Date: 14 May 11 - 09:56 PM

GfS -- I'm here! (Not been home much during the last couple of days, though.)

Be cool, if we could do messenger, and I could play audio for ya'!

I think I'm prolly interested, but I'm not exactly sure what you mean... audio of what, for example?

Cheers,

YY


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