“Different Voicings Are Great!”
Learning where different voicings of the same chord can be played has been great. Many years ago I just copied how the chords were played - all cowboy chords. But then I decided I wanted to know how they were built and worked which I find very interesting.
“Really Helped Me Start Making My Own Solos”
This has helped me starting to make up my own solos.
Courses: Slow Blues solo in A, Guitar Scale Patterns, Bar Chords Made Easy, Unlocking 1,4,5
There are plenty of keys in the above courses to help someone like me, who has always experimented with different sounds on my guitar, to make riffs and solos my own. It is nice to be able to do classic solos note for note, but the real enjoyment is changing them to how you are feeling in the moment.
After all, the pros do not play them the same way every time.
Understanding the fret board makes this possible. It frees you up to be able to play all over the fret board and UNDERSTAND why certain notes sound so sweet together.
I also use songs playing on the radio as jam tracks. Since I do this at home with no one listening but my wife (she says I have become a lot better over the past several years), I am not worried about making mistakes. I start playing immediately as a song plays to try and find the key it is in. I have developed my ear so that I can hear it when I find the key. Since I have been doing this for the past few years, it only takes 2-3 seconds to find the key. This makes playing more fun and free.
Understanding how chords are made up allows me to find and play the same chords in different voicings all over the fretboard. Several years ago, I would have thought this would be impossible for me.
I would stress that progress comes from playing, and more playing. I play because it is fun and it relaxes me. Learning how the fretboard works will make it fun for others also. Also, playing in a band helps you get your timing down. I play in a band at my church, which is a safe place. (You do not have to worry about people throwing stuff if you make a mistake). I had only been playing for a couple of years when I joined the band and at first, could only keep up with every 3rd chord the band played. But when I found the correct chord I would accent it. I did this to express my joy at playing the right chord, but the band said it made things sound better. This helped my initial disappointment of not being able to keep up.
Today, I am able to fit in and add to a band's sound. To those just starting out, I would encourage them to enjoy the journey. After several years of steady playing, you will be having fun also.
Being able to play freely makes it more fun.
The new solo course is great.
“Absolutely Top Notch!”
Jonathon, I sincerely believe your lesson material on this subject and demonstration of it via this Solo is absolutely top notch. I cannot credit you enough!
I think you should do a few more solos on this very aspect with a couple of different progressions that would drive home the point you are making so well…i.e the value of knowing what notes one is choosing to play rather than shooting darts and hoping for a melodic result to emerge.
I think any learner who believes just learning lead solos from songs without any regard to understanding the underlying theory framework of scale choices / notes and their relationship to harmony is really making a big mistake in the long run!
You mentioned the ‘monkey see, monkey do’ attitude – which is made so valid.
Thank you for formulating such a great course!
I've purchased most of your courses and have found them invaluable. I've advanced my guitar playing ability from Learner through to Intermediate. Although I don't play in a band, I jam regularly with friends and they have noticed the improvement particularly with my soloing.
Thanks so much to you for your highly instructional courses and jam tracks.
“Helped me greatly!”
I have two courses, Tasty Riffs, and Slow A Solo. Both have help me greatly. You teaching method is very easy to understand I especially like that you added the copy cat portion.
Keep up the good work.
Blues in A solo really shows how much more you can get out of the minor pentatonic scale than just running up and down the scale. Nice one!
“I'm Getting True Progress and Results!”
The courses are well organized and easy for me to follow along. I get true progress and results which helps me keep motivated and looking forward to the next session.
I have purchased most all of them and get great results from each of them.
“I like the copycat portion!”
Got it nearly nailed! Just a few more days. Like the copycat portion. Well done, Jonathan!
“Good mix of theory and learning”
It's too soon to say that my playing has improved. Currently I am focused on timing/counting and I am able to play lesson 1 reasonably close to the count.
I like your material - a good mix of theory and learning.
“Gives Me Ideas For Making a Solo My Own”
I am learning and understanding the fretboard, giving me ideas for changing a solo, so as to make it my own.
Courses: Guitar Scale Patterns and Slow Blues Solo in A.
I have found the fretboard sheets from Guitar Scale Patterns, showing the Root 6 Pentatonic minor and major, Root 5 Pentatonic minor, Diatonic minor and major and root 5 minor very helpful in understanding Slow Blues Solo in A, which I have just started. I have got the first phrase down with some changes of my own and will finish the rest of it as I get time. Been playing guitar for 10 years and I play about an hour and a half a day, mainly because it relaxes me and have enjoyed learning the Classic Rock songs from the 1960's and 70's. I am 66 years old.
“I finally feel as though I can play!”
I have to say that doing the Slow Blues in A course seems to have been
the clincher for me. It made me see the versatility of the pentatonic
minor scale, and understand the relationship between the notes selected
and the underlying chords. It has sent me back to the Scale Patterns
course, and over to the Riff Ninja material on soloing. Although you
both cover similar ground, I sometimes find that going through the
principles through two different teachers helps the message to get
While I have picked up elements of the key principles from these courses
in the past, it seems to be Blues in A that has brought it all together
for me. I'm getting to know how to identify the key of a song, and
where on the fretboard I can solo in that key. I know the pentatonic
minor scale, and can play along with a jam track using that, and it
sounds OK! I'm working on learning the diatonic scale. I still haven't
quite got my ahead around using the relative minor, and I currently
stick in the same key as the chords.
But after messing around with bits and pieces on the guitar for years, a
concerted effort with Blues in A, and following that up with some
intensive work on the other things I have mentioned, and I finally feel
as though I can play a bit! It feels like the end of the beginning!
“My knowledge has improved considerably thanks to you!”
My knowledge has improved considerably thanks to you!
I have unfortunately for me started later in my life, I find some challenges in doing so but slowly I am gaining some ground, I like the way you explain things in a common sense way, thanks Jonathan.
“Extremely well done!”
Extremely well done, most enjoyable, and much appreciated. Good value for the money. These are the kinds of course that I like best - short projects that yield a tangible result at the end. Learned a lot here. Thanks, Jonathan!
Jerry in Colorado
“Significantly Improved My Ability To Craft Solos”
Jonathon, your lesson has contributed to significantly improving my ability in crafting solos and especially the aspect of understanding how knowledge of music theory can be directly related to the process. Since I previously made an effort to learn to read music notation, I also value the fact that "Music Notation" and not just Tabs are provided, which helps me accurately follow with the instruction.
Slow Blues Solo in A
Very genuine advice given by Jonathon and excellent practical demonstration in the accompanying video. The Copycat is also a very innovative approach!
“Really expanding my bag of tricks and licks!”
Hi Jonathan, I've been playing the 12 bar blues for years but was really stuck in a rut.
I have only just started the course but so far it has really started to expand my bag of tricks and licks.
To learn more about Slow Blues Solo in A
please click here.