Going back to the basics made me a better player?

Classical Guitar technique: studies, scales, arpeggios, theory
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Bluejay
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Feb 21, 2017 7:22 pm

Going back to the basics made me a better player?

Postby Bluejay » Fri Feb 24, 2017 10:08 pm

So, I'm what would generously be described as an intermediate player. I took lessons from an instructor using the Christopher Parkening books. When we were through with the books, I began working on a repertoire. After some time off, I picked up and began playing again and fairly soon I felt I was playing at my previous level. But then I decided to go back to the beginning. I re-purchased the Parkening books with the accompanying CD's and slowly played through all the exercises and pieces, trying to match my sound exactly as I heard it on the CD. At times it felt foolishly simple, yet I paid careful attention to each exercise (which I had apparently not done in the first place) The result was that I now feel like I'm a MUCH better player all around.

So I wonder if anyone else has had the same experience? Do instructors rush their students through pieces just for the sake of progress? Do students tend to rush through the basics just to get to something that sounds good? And how many other students have plateaued in the their progress due to poor technique and could improve by going back to the basics?

I'm interested to see if anyone else has had a similar experience.

Jay

Robin
Posts: 660
Joined: Wed May 28, 2008 11:42 am
Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Re: Going back to the basics made me a better player?

Postby Robin » Sat Feb 25, 2017 5:27 am

Hi Bluejay,

I had a similar experience. After I completed my BA in music with classical guitar emphasis, I went back to the beginning under the guidance of an instructor. I feel that walking the path of a beginner as a more experienced player made me a better player and a better teacher of beginners.

I, too, felt like I rushed through the learning process the first time but I was also under the pressure of degree requirements. Regardless of circumstances, I think this experience is common and may have more to do with the learning process than instructors pushing or students rushing. When we are experiencing the guitar for the first time and being introduced to new skills, repertoire, etc we can only embrace it to a certain depth. In going back to those beginning skills we do so with more wisdom and depth of understanding. When I went back to the beginning, my skills were decent. As a result of reworking my technical and musical beginnings, I feel that my playing is much more refined and have a better appreciation of what it takes to really play well.

I'm now playing intermediate level pieces again and still have no desire to push into that advanced repertoire yet. In addition, I'm developing my collaborative playing skills. There is so much wonderful music to play at this level!

Best,

Robin
So much music, so little time.

Bluejay
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Feb 21, 2017 7:22 pm

Re: Going back to the basics made me a better player?

Postby Bluejay » Mon Feb 27, 2017 3:55 pm

That's great to hear Robin. I think you're right about just being part of the natural learning progress. Nice to know it wasn't just me!

Salvador
Posts: 200
Joined: Tue Nov 24, 2015 10:59 am
Location: Asia

Re: Going back to the basics made me a better player?

Postby Salvador » Mon Feb 27, 2017 5:15 pm

if you know the basics, the next step is to practice scales. It's the answer to improve your playing. It's the right hand that needs to improve since you know already the basics.

2handband
Posts: 948
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2015 7:31 pm

Re: Going back to the basics made me a better player?

Postby 2handband » Wed Mar 01, 2017 1:17 pm

Sure. Right now I'm revisiting all the pieces in noads 100 solos preparatory to diving into the legnani caprices

unicornio
Posts: 30
Joined: Wed Feb 22, 2017 1:17 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Going back to the basics made me a better player?

Postby unicornio » Sat Mar 04, 2017 12:24 pm

My introduction to reading music was with a teacher as a kid. Older now, taking up guitar again, over the last year or so it seemed logical to dismantle the whole thing lol and go back to basics. Buying a nylon string guitar, and this week in the post Sagreras studies and Fred Noad books as recommended by many folks here.

I had no idea of rest strokes, ima techniques etc. Sitting down the last week, was like wow, this is amazing... almost like stepping back in history and discovering the original guitar. The strings etc. Should have been so lucky years ago to realize how beautiful nylon string classical guitar is...

One good thing as years pass by, being a music lover, the ear develops in appreciation. So back to basics for me, and alot to learn.


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