I’m happy to report that I made it through my first year of guitar lessons, and I never missed a single day of practice. There were days I didn’t want to practice, but the habit I formed of daily practice kicked in and before I could think of something else to distract me I had found myself strapping on my guitar. Ten minutes of practice is better than no practice, yet on those days that I was wimping out I managed to stay faithful to my routine. I did hit a wall or two, where I experienced the fear of failure and felt like there’s no way I’m going to make it as a guitarist, but somehow I dug deep enough to plough through the rough patches and climb over my walls of self-doubting fear. I owe a lot to my music sensei for providing insight into my limitations and strengths which gave me what I needed to overcome my concerns of failure.
I ended my first year with reaching a level of musicianship to understand how to read Bach’s Minuet in G Major for two guitars. It will take me a few more months to polish my performance level in playing Bach’s Minuet, but I feel good about reaching this particular piece at the end of my first year. Bach’s Minuet also introduced me to key changes and counterpoints. I now appreciate the mathematics hidden in Bach’s music as he manipulates key changes and creates exhilarating elements of counterpoints. The arrangement I’m playing from is written for two guitars and there’s no doubt it sounds fantastic played on classical guitars, but two electrics going at it is undoubtedly ELO-esque. So my goal is to develop and refine part one until it’s polished to my satisfaction, then record it and play it back while I perform part two. After part two is polished I’ll record it as track two, then output the two tracks as a single recording.
My second year will obviously take me to new levels as I dig deeper into theory; guitar technique; musical forms and structure; and composition and songwriting. At the end of the day, I’m happy with what I accomplished in my first year and the second year looks exciting as I begin to feel and think more like a musician.