Guitar Lessons by Chip McDonald - A Good Tool Set

Tuesday, October 18, 2022

A Good Tool Set

   I like to equate guitar skills to "tools".  

"Non-contextural Dog Serenade at Giverny"

  Guitar phrasing is very idiomatic to guitar.  Much of what the "sound" of the guitar is happens because of the physical execution of the musical phrase.  It's what is particularly challenging and rewarding about learning the guitar.


 People learning how to use a hammer first, then maybe a screwdriver?  They don't start with an angle grinder, or a specialized tool like a Kreg milling jig.  They also don't consider printing something out with a 3d printer to be "using a tool", although maybe you can make a tool with a 3d printer?

 You also don't learn how to use Every Possible Tool At the Same Time.  

 When you see a professional use a tool, whether it's a guitarist or a carpenter on _This Old House_, you're not seeing the years of effort that went into learning the craft of it.  The master machinist didn't just turn on a lathe a few months ago.  And he certainly knows how to use a screwdriver, identify the different types of screws, thread offsets, metal hardness of a screw, on and on.  Things that are not as visible as the use of a lathe, but are requirements to understand the PROCESS of "being a machinist".  

 Also, something that is a CRAFT isn't worth much if it can be mastered in a few months.  Or years.   Learning a CRAFT is rewarding in the context of the effort and results; "free" results with no effort is not rewarding.  

 Each little technique on guitar is a tool to learn and master, but they're SINGULAR tools in a "tool box" of skills.  Every guitar player as a different toolbox; in essence, that IS the guitar player.  Most all have some tools inside that are the same, but the assortment and make are different.  Some have more than others, some take pride in really knowing how to use a few very effectively.

 Learning guitar is a CRAFT that requires TOOLS, but it's not everything at once, instantly....

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