(Re)Learning Guitar with Technology

When I was about 13 years old, I picked up my first guitar. I named her Billy Jean. That was about 4 years ago now. When I picked up the guitar for the first time, YouTube was my teacher. I played guitar for my school's jazz band, and I was given music to learn on the first day I showed up for rehearsal. Obviously, I didn't know anything at that time, so I had to teach myself. Everything I knew about the guitar was self-taught, with the occasional help of YouTube tutorials.

There are good things and bad things that come from that. You can move at your own pace. You can learn songs that you like and you find cool. You can learn in a way that's easiest for you. That's what I loved about teaching myself how to play guitar. However, over time, I noticed that I was heavily focusing on one aspect of playing guitar. I learned how to play rhythm guitar like a fucking pro... but that's it. I could read tabs, but not well enough. I had trouble playing riffs. Things like that were things that intimidated me. For those of you that don't know, rhythm guitar is basically the background music. The chords of a song. That's important and all, but the main reason why I wanted to learn guitar was because I wanted to be like Slash and Carlos Santana and all those great guitarists I admired. I realized very quickly that I wasn't achieving that goal. There was a... gap... in my learning. I learned rhythm guitar well, but not lead. 

This summer, I want to change that. A few days ago, I downloaded an app called Yousician on my phone. This app is very intuitive and helpful. It makes learning even the most frustrating techniques fun. I downloaded this app, not expecting much. But the lessons had me hooked. Starting me off at an intermediate-ish level, Yousician provided me with lessons to help me improve my current guitar skills. Each lesson involves a video tutorial and well as a few practice songs. Time flew when I was doing the lessons. Not only that, but I actually felt like I was learning a lot. The practice songs challenged me, but not in a bad way; it was the right amount of frustration, if you get what I mean. It wasn't overwhelming. 

I've been using Yousician for a few days, and I HIGHLY recommend it to anyone looking to either learn guitar, or continue learning guitar. It's a simple app, but it's beyond effective. 

Song: Scarborough Fair. This song was one of my practice songs for a lesson and it was very frustrating. But after a few tries, I got it!


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