Day 61. Moving forward

Today I finally watched Module 15 and implemented something new into my practice routine.

1234 exercise

2341 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

2413 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

2431 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

12, 13, 14, 23, 24, 34 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

Scales

Major scales

8th notes @ 150 bpm

D string – Pronouncing notes [Fretboard knowledge]

G string – Pronouncing notes [Fretboard knowledge]

Minor scales

8th notes @ 150 bpm

Strumming

Module 15

80 bpm. I really have no problem with my barre chords but their substitutes are something new for me. Hence my disability to play them fast. But it’s an interesting practice, so hopefully I’ll master them by the end of this week, as they are not that hard.

Ear training

I didn’t make it to the level with 7 intervals, but managed to improve my successfully guessed ones percentage. It’s fun how I’m thinking that I’m worse that the previous day, but it turns out my result is better that the previous one. This perception of progress is quite funny 🙂

Songs

I was interrupted and had to end the practice but managed to play some riffs anyway.

Cream – Sunshine Of Your Love
Europe – The Final Countdown
Green Day – ¿Viva La Gloria? (Little Girl) [Solo]
Nirvana – Smells Like Teen Spirit
Black Sabbath – Paranoid
Arctic Monkeys – Do I Wanna Know?

Summary

I’m happy about my fretboard knowledge and will be definitely able to switch to the next iteration of fretboard knowledge for scales exercise using the random scale machine. The new barre strumming routine is not that hard so hopefully I’ll get it to 120 bpm by the end of this week.

Routines

2341 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
2413 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
2431 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
12, 13, 14, 23, 24, 34 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 6 min

Major scales – 1-12 frets – EADG strings – 150 bpm – 8th notes
Major scales – 1-12 frets – D string – Pronouncing notes – 6:50
Major scales – 1-12 frets – G string – Pronouncing notes – 7:00
Minor scales – 1-12 frets – EA strings – 150 bpm – 8th notes

Strumming Module 15 – 80 bpm

Day 60. My first melody

Today I repeated everything I’d played yesterday, tried a new way of practicing 34s without letting my middle go everywhere and accidentally came up with a simple melody based on the major scale.

1234 exercise

Still struggling with my thumb placement. Either I don’t move it at all or have to stop playing because of a mistake.

2341 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

2413 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

2431 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

12, 13, 14, 23, 24, 34 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

34 on the 5th fret

8th notes @ 120 bpm. My previous way of reducing middle finger movement didn’t work out so I tried something else – taped my index and middle fingers together and made an attempt of playing 34s like that. I think that the main issue is in the lack of stretching so I’ll try to something for improving it.

Scales

Major scales

8th notes @ 150 bpm

A string – Pronouncing notes [Fretboard knowledge]. Under 5 minutes!

Minor scales

8th notes @ 150 bpm

A string – Pronouncing notes [Fretboard knowledge]. Almost under 5 minutes, but I’ll count that anyway!

Ear training

Today I finally got to the level with 7 intervals! The overall percentage of successfully guessed intervals is lower but insignificantly.

Songs

Just before recording this video I randomly played some scale parts and came up with the melody which I want to share. Also I decided to make some list of riffs to make these videos more organized.

The Melody I Came Up With
The Phantom of the Opera
The Offspring – You’re Gonna Go Far, Kid
Король и Шут – Лесник [Intro]
Black Sabbath – Paranoid

Summary

What a fun day it was. I’m kinda stuck with 1234s and really need to improve the consistency of these combinations across the neck. So maybe I’ll try to start a new module and see what routines are there. Anyway I still need to practice major scales notes pronunciation on the D and G strings, so presumably I still have things to practice for now and don’t need something else.

Routines

2341 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
2413 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
2431 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
12, 13, 14, 23, 24, 34 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 6 min
34 – 5th fret – 120 bpm – 8th notes – 2 min – New approach

Major scales – 1-12 frets – EADG strings – 150 bpm – 8th notes
Major scales – 1-12 frets – A string – Pronouncing notes – 4:55
Minor scales – 1-12 frets – EA strings – 150 bpm – 8th notes
Minor scales – 1-12 frets – A string – Pronouncing notes – 5:02

Day 59. The Phantom of the Opera

Today I continued working on 1234s and scales and in the end kinda went over the top with picking up the whole melody and chords for The Phantom of the Opera.

1234 exercise

It’s funny how one day you have an issue and then the next day it’s gone but you’re struggling with something you’ve never noticed and had problems with before. Some combinations were harder on the way up the neck but now they are much easier on the way down some how and the other way around.

2341 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

2413 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

2431 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

12, 13, 14, 23, 24, 34 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

Scales

Major scales

8th notes @ 150 bpm. Muscle memory slowly but surely appears, which I’m happy about. Still struggling with D and G strings though.

Pronouncing notes [Fretboard knowledge]. During the exercise I used to though of the A string as if it was E string. So I messed up a few scales and had to start them over again. Hence it took far too long.

Minor scales

8th notes @ 150 bpm. The shape is really easy, but I need to work on the tension, especially in my pinky.

Pronouncing notes [Fretboard knowledge]. Surprisingly I managed to finish in less time that before although there was some mistakes as well.

Ear Training

The progress is quite unnoticeable but it is presented 🙂

Songs

I ran out of ideas for guitar riffs, so some new ones are really necessary to implement in this section. Will chose some soon.

Green Day – When I Come Around
Green Day – Welcome to Paradise
Green Day – Boulevard of Broken Dreams
Green Day – Brain Stew
The White Stripes – Seven Nation Army
Би-2 – Феллини
Deep Purple – Smoke on the Water

The Phantom Of the Opera

It all started when I accidentally played something remotely similar to the melody of this song.

Firstly, I picked up this part, then got interested in the song’s key and chords and noticed that playing the same melody in the shape of the scale is much easier. So I re-figured it out again on the other part of the neck.

This process repeated for a few times. Finally I got some chords and progressions between the verses. It was fun but took me literally hours. Anyway, here is the result.

Today I really wanted to make something like a cover of this song, but now I’m not that sure. Anyway, figuring out a song completely by ear and understanding how to play it more comfortable for myself was really great. Need to do it more.

Summary

The Phantom of the Opera part was a complete surprise and I liked it so much. But the new camera angle is not that good. I like the previous one better. Tomorrow I’ll experiment with the lighting and camera positioning and much likely sit down again.

Routines

2341 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
2413 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
2431 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
12, 13, 14, 23, 24, 34 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 6 min

Major scales – 1-12 frets – EADG strings – 150 bpm – 8th notes
Major scales – 1-12 frets – A string – Pronouncing notes – 6:48
Minor scales – 1-12 frets – EA strings – 150 bpm – 8th notes
Minor scales – 1-12 frets – A string – Pronouncing notes – 5:50

Day 58. Random riffs

Today I ordered a tripod for the phone, changed the lighting a bit and practiced the same routines as yesterday. Also I continued my new idea of playing some random riffs that were in my mind right then.

1234 exercise

2341 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

2413 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

2431 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

12, 13, 14, 23, 24, 34 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

Scales

Major scales

8th notes @ 150 bpm

I was rudely interrupted in the middle of the exercise, so here is another attempt.

Pronouncing notes [Fretboard knowledge]

Minor scales

8th notes @ 150 bpm

Pronouncing notes [Fretboard knowledge]

Ear training

I felt like I was failing more than yesterday but the results are getting better. Unfortunately, this process is not as fast as I want.

Songs

I really like this new tradition of mine 🙂

Marilyn Manson – Sweet Dreams
Black Sabbath – Paranoid
Blur – Song 2
Green Day – Holiday
Green Day – Good Riddance (Time of Your Life) [Intro]
Billie Eilish – bellyache
Ozzy Osbourne – Crazy Train [Intro]
Three Days Grace – The Good Life [Intro]
Green Day – Troublemaker
Green Day – American Idiot

Summary

I’m so into my random riffs idea 😀 It’s fun. My only concern is that I won’t be able to learn something new as fast and these videos will have many songs in common. But maybe it’s not that bad at all and we’ll see about that.

Routines

2341 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
2413 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
2431 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
12, 13, 14, 23, 24, 34 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 6 min

Major scales – 1-12 frets – EADG strings – 150 bpm – 8th notes
Major scales – 1-12 frets – A string – Pronouncing notes – 6:31
Minor scales – 1-12 frets – EA strings – 150 bpm – 8th notes
Minor scales – 1-12 frets – A string – Pronouncing notes – 5:58

Day 57. New lighting and idea

Today I started practicing 1234s on the whole fretboard and tried to increase my playing scales skill. The second part didn’t work out…

1234 exercise

It was a rough start but considering it’s the first attempt I did pretty well.

2341 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

2413 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

2431 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

12, 13, 14, 23, 24, 34 on the 1-12 frets

8th notes @ 150 bpm

Scales

I don’t know what’s up with me and scales but I just constantly keep messing them up. Maybe I should decrease the speed a bit or practice on a single fret instead of the whole fretboard at once.

Major scales

8th notes @ 150 bpm

Pronouncing notes [Fretboard knowledge]

Minor scales

8th notes @ 150 bpm

Pronouncing notes [Fretboard knowledge]

Ear training

Gradually increasing my ears skills. The process takes much more time than I hoped it would take. There were a few moments when I though I could get to the next level but every time I failed just by the end of the progress bar when I needed 2-3 more correct answers to proceed. I’ll try practicing every day before I go to sleep in order to reach my goal this week.

Songs

I decided to start a tradition of playing random riffs that I know and want to play right now. It’s just for fun and in order not to get bored of other routines. I was so excited about the new light that I came up with that idea just to record something using it 😀

Nirvana – Smells Like Teen Spirit [Intro]
Король и Шут – Лесник [Intro]
The Offspring – The Kids Aren’t Alright [Intro]
Green Day – 21 Guns [Solo]
Green Day – 21 Guns [Chorus]
Arctic Monkeys – Do I Wanna Know? [Intro]
The All-American Rejects – Dirty Little Secret [Intro]
Green Day – ¿Viva La Gloria? (Little Girl) [Solo]
Green Day – Boulevard of Broken Dreams [Solo]

Summary

The first half of the day was not that productive, but the thing with the new lamps got myself a second breath so I became very enthusiastic about recording something else. Need to maintain this kind of mood to proceed further easier and with more fun!

Routines

2341 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
2413 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
2431 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 3 min
12, 13, 14, 23, 24, 34 – 1-12 frets – 150 bpm – 8th notes – 10 min

Major scales – 1-12 frets – EADG strings – 150 bpm – 8th notes
Major scales – 1-12 frets – A string Pronouncing notes – 7:42
Minor scales – 1-12 frets – EA strings – 150 bpm – 8th notes
Minor scales – 1-12 frets – A string Pronouncing notes – 6:54

Week 7. Summary

Wow, that was a week and a half! I’ve reached all my goals and even more, got through Module 13 and Module 14 and had so much fun finally practicing something music theory related.

I totally agreed with somebody’s comment under my When I Come Around cover – there is no need to look at the left hand all the time, especially while playing something easy and muscle memory related. So this week’s motto was “Don’t look there” and I practiced almost everything looking at the window 🙂 This approach led to some mistakes which were not a thing before, but I think I managed to adapt to it more or less, so I’m happy about that.

The main issue with 1234s this week was 2314 combination. My brain just couldn’t comprehend it after playing 1423 for a couple of weeks before. I tended to switch to the next string after playing 23 part instead of 14 one. But by the end of this week I seem to get rid of this habit. The combination is not perfectly played yet, not at all. But this major issue is gone.

I still struggle with the 34s in 12-13-14-23-24-34 exercise. My middle finger lives his own life and moves around a lot. So I started practicing this combination separately keeping my middle finger on the G string and trying not to let him go away from the strings. I’m getting there at the slower pace, but I need much more practice to achieve the current speed I use for this exercise.

The scales are the fun part for me 🙂 It may sound weird, but I haven’t practiced one before, so it’s really fun. After 1234s it’s something different and finally more music related. So I enjoy playing them and trying to do it consistently. Pronouncing notes while playing scales are really tricky for me. It takes a lot of time, so I only practiced it once this week. And I completely forgot about the circle of fifths, so I had to figure out myself whether this scale is with sharps or flats. It was really long, but it was fun 😀

I also practiced the intervals ear training at tonedear.com, but I only had time to do it once. I started from the easiest level and practiced for about half an hour non-stop. In that time the level increased only twice – Major 2nd and Minor 2nd were added. After that I didn’t succeed in increasing the level more by making mistakes too often to make any progress. But the final result is not bad – 78.27%.

The goals for this week were:

  • [Done] Play at least three 1234 combinations starting with 2 at 300 bpm
  • [Done] Increase my ring-pinky endurance and precision in 12-13-14-23-24-34 exercise
  • [Done] Find notes on all strings in fretboard knowledge exercise in less than 1:30
  • [Done] Watch through Module 13 again and start the ear training

My goals for the next week:

  • 2341, 2413, 2431 as 8th notes at 150 bpm
  • 34s without moving my middle finger at least as 8th notes at 100 bpm
  • All the scales consistently as 8th notes at 150 bpm across the fretboard
  • All the scales pronouncing notes in less than 8 min [the first attempt was in 13 min]
  • Get to the level with 7 intervals on ear training at tonedear.com

As always, here’s the video.

1234 exercise

2134 on the 5th fret – 8th notes @ 110 bpm → 8th notes @ 150 bpm
2143 on the 5th fret – 8th notes @ 110 bpm → 8th notes @ 150 bpm
2314 on the 5th fret – 8th notes @ 110 bpm → 8th notes @ 150 bpm
34 on the 5th fret – Quarter notes @ 80 bpm → Quarter notes @ 100 bpm
12-13-14-23-24-34 on the 5th fret – 8th notes at 120 bpm → 8th notes at 150 bpm [Then made a step back to 130 bpm]

Fretboard knowledge

All strings at once – 1:35 → 1:30

Ear training

Intervals – 317 of 405 or 78.27%

Songs

Ozzy Osbourne – Crazy Train [Ear training]
Cream – Sunshine Of Your Love [Ear training]
Europe – The Final Countdown [Ear training]
Arctic Monkeys – Do I Wanna Know? [Ear training]

Day 46. Do I Wanna Know?

Today I recorded Do I Wanna Know? by Arctic Monkeys which I figured out yesterday, increased the speed for 1234 exercises and reached my fretboard knowledge goal!

1234 exercise

2134 on the 5th fret

8th notes at 140 bpm.

2143 on the 5th fret

8th notes at 140 bpm.

2314 on the 5th fret

8th notes at 140 bpm.

12-13-14-23-24-34 on the 5th fret

8th notes at 140 bpm.

Fretboard knowledge

Today I finally reached my goal – finished this exercise in 1:30!

Ear training

Besides all riffs I figure out yesterday there was another one which I haven’t recorded. It’s the riff from Do I Wanna Know? by Arctic Monkeys.

Summary

I yet again had not much time to practice today, but the results are still pretty decent. Tomorrow will try to spend more time practicing.

Day 45. Picking up some riffs

Today I finally got time to practice something from Module 13 and continued increasing the speed of 1234s.

Also the main goal for today was to start playing without looking at the fretboard all the time. So I played everything looking away from it.

1234 exercise

2134 on the 5th fret

8th notes at 130 bpm.

2143 on the 5th fret

8th notes at 130 bpm.

2314 on the 5th fret

8th notes at 130 bpm.

1234, 1243, 1324, 1342, 1423, 1432 on the 5th fret

8th notes at 150 bpm. I wanted to see if I’m able to play all these without watching.

12-13-14-23-24-34 on the 5th fret

8th notes at 130 bpm.

Fretboard knowledge

It’s funny how even sloppy attempts manage to end in 1:40. There was no try above that mark. And I’m really close to the goal – my best time is 1:32. Not sure if I got it before but it’s surely the best one.

Ear training

I managed to pick up notes for Crazy Train, Sunshine of Your Love, The Final Countdown riffs. The notes were pretty much perfect but my positioning and choosing the fret and strings to play them were not always the best ones possible. So I looked up all of them to make sure I was playing them right.

I also picked up Do I Wanna Know riff by ear but haven’t recorded it.

Summary

Tomorrow I’ll start Module 14. It’s time to finally move on and add some routines to my practice. Also I’m really glad there was this picking up by ear thing. Finally some songs, which is so much fun 🙂

Day 43. Adding 1234 combinations

Today I started practicing three new combinations: 2134, 2143, 2314 and tried to set the new record for fretboard knowledge. Also I replayed Demons by Imagine Dragons and got interrupted twice during 12-13-14-23-24-34 exercise.

1234 exercise

I wanted to start from 8th notes at 150 bpm but then realized that starting the pattern from the middle finger really makes everything much harder. So I dropped the speed to 110 bpm and played all of them, decent-ish.

2134 on the 5th fret

8th notes at 110 bpm.

2143 on the 5th fret

8th notes at 110 bpm.

2314 on the 5th fret

8th notes at 110 bpm.

12-13-14-23-24-34 on the 5th fret

8th notes at 120 bpm. Got interrupted twice…

Fretboard knowledge

From now on I’ll record every attempt to 100% film the attempt that will be the new record.

Imagine Dragons – Demons

I played this song again in order to relax my right hand more and play loudly. When playing like this another issue occurs – I just miss the E string while doing snares.

Summary

Not much practice today, but it’s a start of the week, so there are more days ahead to implement something new.

Week 6. Summary

What a great week it was! I reached all my goals for it and more importantly – uploaded my first cover in a very long time.

It was much fun to practice and record it, but the downside of cover making is that it took almost all my practicing time. So in order to progress through the course faster I’ll try do do one every month or so. Just to practice something else useful in between.

The goals for this week were:

  • [Done] Play all six 1234 combinations I managed to get to 300 bpm across the whole neck at the same speed
  • [Done] Record When I Come Around and make it into a video
  • [Done] Start implementation of Modules 12-13 routines

My goals for the next week:

  • Play at least three 1234 combinations starting with 2 at 300 bpm
  • Increase my ring-pinky endurance and precision in 12-13-14-23-24-34 exercise
  • Find notes on all strings in fretboard knowledge exercise in less than 1:30
  • Watch through Module 13 again and start the ear training

As always there is a video with some details.

1234 exercise

1234 on the 1-12 frets – 8th notes at 170 bpm → 16th notes at 90 bpm
1243 on the 1-12 frets – 8th notes at 150 bpm (increasing consistency)
1324 – 8th notes at 150 bpm (on the 5th fret → on the 1-12 frets)
1342 – 8th notes at 150 bpm (on the 5th fret → on the 1-12 frets)
1423 – 8th notes at 150 bpm (on the 5th fret → on the 1-12 frets)
1432 – 8th notes at 150 bpm (on the 5th fret → on the 1-12 frets)
12-13-14-23-24-34 on the 5th fret – 8th notes at 100 bpm → 8th notes at 120 bpm

Strumming

Module 12 pattern – 120 bpm

Songs

Green Day – When I Come Around [Cover]
Imagine Dragons – Demons [Thumb snare + Palm muting]