Week 42. An Overkill

Well, the heading speaks for itself 😅

After the livestream I returned back to the previous chords from C Ionian and D Dorian modes hoping that their quantity will decrease after I apply the following rules:

  • The lowest note of the chord must be 1, 3, 5 or 7
  • We can omit any notes except for 3, 7 and the ones in the chord name

The first rule really helped and I deleted quite a few of voicings which couldn’t be called the way I named them.

The second though… Well, after going through C Ionian mode I “decreased” the number of voicings from 74 to 89, and for the D Dorian – from 69 to 98. I’ve spent several hours straight for each of these modes yesterday and found some crazy wide voicings which I haven’t considered before. Hence this quantity increase.

The situation have got out of control a bit, but I’m having fun as soon as I’m not stuck at the same ones.

Next week I’ll go on vacation and won’t be able to continue just yet. So I’ll go with ear training and maybe something else instead. But when I’m back, G Mixolydian, A Aeolian and B Locrian will have been gone through as well.

At first I thought I would play all these chords, but now when I’m writing this I’m not sure anymore, because I have 311 voicings on my list and it’s gonna be a 15-20 minutes long part of the video of me just playing chords, which is not very enjoyable to watch. But on the other hand it might be useful to hear through all of the different voicings and choose the ones I like the most. So at that point I’m a bit uncertain, and we’ll see what’s gonna be as a result.

Phew… Can’t believe that I’ve done all this. These numbers are really crazy.

Anyway, see you next week from sunny Turkey!

The goals for this week were:

  • [Done] Figure out E Phrygian Chords
  • [Done] Figure out F Lydian Chords

My goals for the next week:

  • Have fun 🙂

The chords I’ve figured out:

Week 41. Chords Galore

Well, that was a week and a half! 143 chord voicings for C Ionian and D Dorian related chords have been diagramed, sorted and saved on my computer.

At first I wanted to learn all the shapes by heart but on the 3rd day realized that it’s pretty much impossible, so I decided to create my own chord library instead.

Next week – Phrygian and Lydian modes. I’ll definitely have some work to do. See you then!

The goals for this week were:

  • [Done] Repeat C Ionian Chords
  • [Done] Learn D Dorian Chords

My goals for the next week:

  • Figure out E Phrygian Chords
  • Figure out F Lydian Chords

The chords I’ve figured out:

Week 40. C Ionian Chords

Well, that week was a breakthrough. I finally started to understand how chords work and why that chords belongs to that key. Mind blown!

As always, I wanted to go through Module 35 as thoroughly as I can. So instead of learning 1-2 voicings of each chord I decided to learn pretty much all of them. Well, at first I thought I’d learned all of them 😅

The first approach I took was to find a website with as many chord variations as possible and learn all of them in the way I’ve learnt all the shapes of the CAGED system. And it really helped, now I know a lot of them.

But… Yesterday it downed on me! There is a way to figure out more voicings. So for the last two days I’ve been figuring out the shapes based on the C major chord shapes of the CAGED system. And since I’m not sure about all of them, I recorded the whole process. Hence the video length. Sorry about that.

That process has really made me excited and interested in finally learning the notes of the chords. And the process of figuring out the shapes appeared to be a refreshing experience.

So I’m looking forward to start practicing Dorian mode tomorrow.

P.S. I had no time to improve my improvisation, so there’s none of it in the video. I need to learn some licks in order to get more interesting sound, because I really started to repeat myself too often. So I guess I’ll return to it after the chords module.

The goals for this week were:

  • [Done] Implement Module 35 routines
  • [Done] Improvise daily

My goals for the next week:

  • Repeat C Ionian Chords
  • Learn D Dorian Chords

Week 39. Travis Picking

Hey guitar chefs!

Travis picking patterns are fun. I really enjoyed playing them and got from 60 bpm to 100-120 bpm depending on the pattern, which is a nice result.

Next week I want to finally start the module on chord/scale relationships. See you there!

The goals for this week were:

  • [Done] Practice Travis picking patterns
  • [Done] Improvise daily

My goals for the next week:

  • Implement Module 35 routines
  • Improvise daily

Week 38. Through The Snares

Hey guitar chefs!

The main focus of this week was implementing thumb snares into playing. At first that was tricky but then I kinda got the idea and it started feeling more natural. I’m not saying I’ve perfected them, but I managed to play them pretty consistently.

On the improvisation front there’s an issue – my knowledge faded away as soon as I added the second chord so I kinda need to process all my improv ideas over again in order to wrap my head around this new configuration of backing track 😅

Fun stuff… Anyway, all routines are in the video.

The goals for this week were:

  • [Done] Practice Module 31 routines
  • [Done] Implement Module 33 routines
  • [Done] Improvise daily

My goals for the next week:

  • Practice Travis picking patterns
  • Improvise daily

Week 37. Hallelujah And Stuff

Hey guitar chefs!

This week I’ve been practicing the exercises from Module 31, have learned Hallelujah and Wake Me Up When September Ends and tried to improve in improvisation.

Not much to say, everything is in the video 🙂

The goals for this week were:

  • [Done] Practice Module 31 routines
  • [Done] Implement Module 32 routines
  • [Done] Improvise daily

My goals for the next week:

  • Practice Module 31 routines
  • Implement Module 33 routines
  • Improvise daily

Week 36. Fingerpicking

Hey guitar chefs!

This week I started fingerpicking practice. My right hand fingers weren’t ready for that and calluses appeared on them. I got used to the calluses on the left hand fingers, but on the right one… That was really unexpected!

After going through all the exercises I remembered the song from The Last of Us Part II. It’s the cover of Take On Me by a-ha and it’s for fingerpicking. So I’ve been practicing it as well.

On the improvisation front I had three insights on some areas of this routine, changed the backing track and have been improvising on a single string each day. Had a lot of fun but need to figure out some new ways of doing it not to repeat myself too much.

Have a nice one!

The goals for this week were:

  • [Done] Implement Module 31 routines
  • [Done] Improvise daily

My goals for the next week:

  • Practice Module 31 routines
  • Implement Module 32 routines
  • Improvise daily

Week 35. Modes And Notes

Hey guitar chefs!

This week I did a lot of note pronunciation. All keys (major and minor), all modes (for minor keys I would just start from aeolian instead of ionian). Each day 3-4 keys. Not much fun but it should be useful in the future.

At this point I’m more of a shapes guy, all improvs are going with memorizing and visualizing shapes on the fretboard, not with keeping the notes I play in mind. I’m sure that at some point the notes will be needed to know. But since now I don’t have any useful application on that I’ll stop that routine for time being until I do.

I reconsidered and decided not to skip fingerpicking modules, so the next week my practice will be formed around Module 31 routines.

That’s it for today, see you next week. Take care!

The goals for this week were:

  • [Done] Memorize the Circle of Fifths
  • [Done] Play the modes pronouncing the notes out loud
  • Practice modes with the Random Scale Machine
  • [Done] Improvise daily

My goals for the next week:

  • Implement Module 31 routines
  • Improvise daily

Week 34. Improv Is Fun

Guitar chefs, what a week it was! I discovered the world of improvisation and it’s SO MUCH FUN 😀

But let’s start from the beginning. I’ve been practicing modes this week. The idea was to remember the shapes and order of them and learn to play these shapes at decent speed. So by the end of the week I got from 1/4 notes @ 120 bpm to 1/8 notes @ 150 bpm, which is cool. The routine with the random scale machine was in my daily practice as well.

Next week I want and need to focus more on the notes than the shapes. So I will be memorizing the Circle of Fifths better and playing all the scales and modes pronouncing the notes out loud.

Improvisation is now my favorite thing to do 😀 As soon as I’ve kinda got the idea and started messing around with different shapes, rhythms and melodies, it became less frustrating and more inspiring. It’s quite interesting that I tend to hold to a particular rhythm the whole session but each day it’s the different one. I suppose it represents my current mood or something like that. Very interesting!

Snow and The Last of the American Girls were not the priority at all this week. As soon as I started the modes and improv I’ve completely forgotten about them, and kinda want to spend more time on the modes next week as well. So these two are abandoned for some time.

My daily practice works. It’s not always easy to keep up but I kinda forced myself to make it a habit and it’s not that annoying already. I upload to the fresh Instagram account daily in order to be accountable for that process: https://www.instagram.com/vsevolod.kolos/

See you next week. Take care!

The goals for this week were:

  • Snow (Hey Oh) with different fingering at 120 bpm
  • The Last of the American Girls by Green Day solo at 122 bpm playing arpeggios the right way
  • [Done] Implement Module 30 routines

My goals for the next week:

  • Memorize the Circle of Fifths
  • Play the modes pronouncing the notes out loud
  • Practice modes with the Random Scale Machine
  • Improvise daily

Week 33. Moving On

What’s going on chefs!

This week was kinda demotivating, because I’m not only failed to increase the speed of muted strumming but had to decrease the speed and my performance got much worse. It’s not what one expect from daily consistent practice, so I’ll drop that exercise for time being and maybe return to it later on. The same goes with the right hand muted string skipping exercise.

Other routines were however pretty okay. I improved in celtic exercise and will stop practicing it, Snow sounds and feels much more consistent and The Last of the American Girls solo appeared to be just a bunch of arpeggios and since that I learned it by ear in 5-10 minutes.

So my emotions are kinda mixed right now. I’m not really depressed, but these dexterity stuff needs to go for now. Today I’ll watch Module 30 and start its routines tomorrow.

Have a nice week everyone!

The goals for this week were:

  • Snow (Hey Oh) at 150 bpm consistently
  • Muted strumming exercise at 190 bpm consistently
  • [Done] Right hand muted string skipping exercise at 100 bpm
  • [Done] Celtic exercise at 120 bpm consistently
  • [Done] Learn The Last of the American Girls by Green Day solo by ear

My goals for the next week:

  • Snow (Hey Oh) with different fingering at 120 bpm
  • The Last of the American Girls by Green Day solo at 122 bpm playing arpeggios the right way
  • Implement Module 30 routines