As stated earlier, you could spend time learning different guitarists, their style, and what they sound like. But that doesn’t guarantee you’re going to become well-rounded. If you’re just learning a few songs to hear them or you want to take a soloing course, forget it.
If you want to become a good guitarist, don’t just go find good guitarists for lessons or for one-off gigs. Instead, make sure your listening and practicing habits are correct.
This sounds fairly obvious, until you read this book. It’s got something of a reverse approach to learning guitar because it recommends not listening to music at all before learning. The best way, however, is to work at it in your free time, as described in the intro to the book.
That said, listening to music is important. Learning to play music in general, and learning a certain style of music in particular, have different benefits. The purpose of this section is to address one particularly important aspect of learning guitar – learning to listen.
If you were not taught to learn guitar or how to listen, how would you learn? How would you choose good material for practicing? How would you pick your tunes? Should you listen to your favorite music and make it one of your own?
Listen to music while practicing
First, you need to decide where and how you want to practice to get the best possible result from your time. If practicing outdoors is too cold or you are not accustomed to seeing lights, get somewhere else and practice there. However, if you are new to the guitar, or simply want to learn how to play songs with good rhythm, practice in your own room, where the lighting is bright, the air is clean…
If you play guitar at home then play a great deal of music at home. If you can’t play that often, you can probably play at other times if you just play songs at home in a warm, quiet place. And then practice other songs in your room that you don’t usually listen to.
Once you find a good time to practice, find some songs to practice. There are a lot of possibilities. You can play on the guitar and play it loud and quiet, or listen to a band, or play a little pop ballad or something similar.
When you find a song, put it to the side and just think about what’s happening, or you can start by just playing the notes or chord progression. When
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