Monkey See, Monkey Do Guitar

Years ago I spent a while in Liberia, West Africa and had all kinds of crazy adventures. For a brief time, I even had a monkey as a pet. 

Crazy little dude liked to ride on the motorcycle with you… 

If he were still around today, maybe I’d teach him to play a little guitar!  

Okay, I’ll admit – I’ve been playing around with AI image generators, and I just had to see what it would come up with for a monkey playing guitar, so there you have it. 

But the thing with monkeys is they can learn to COPY, but they don’t learn to UNDERSTAND. 

And unfortunately, I’ve come across a load of guitar players who approach their guitars this way! 

I’ve heard some guys refer to themselves as “parrot players” which is very much the same thing. 

In fact, one guy sheepishly confessed to me he was a parrot player, because that was all he’d had to go on – it was all his friends could do for him; show him what and how they played a particular something, and let him copy it until he got it right. 

Rinse, and repeat. 

Unfortunately, it doesn’t matter how many times you copy something, if the proverbial penny doesn’t drop into understanding what you’re playing, it really isn’t going to move you ahead very far as a player. 

And if it does, it’s gonna take a LONG time. 

This same fellow – I’ll call him Tim – explained to me how the highlight of his week was when he could get together with his friends at the local pub. They’d all bring their guitars and sit in a corner and holler their way through a bunch of songs together. 

He found himself always watching the fingers of the more experienced guys… 

When they changed chords, he’d follow. Usually a beat late. 

If they strummed, he tried to match it. If they picked, he’d do his best to follow. 

But after months of this, he was no better off… and starting to feel rather frustrated. 

Why couldn’t he just play the way his friends did? 

He knew he didn’t have a clue WHY he was playing particular chords, and when I explained to him how chords work together in groups – called keys – it kind of blew his mind. 

“Of course!” he said – he immediately recognized that certain chords were always showing up together, like G, C, D and Em for instance… he’d just never once considered that there might be a reason for that. 

After talking for just a few minutes, the light bulbs starting coming on, and Tim started getting excited. 

Suddenly he’d been given hope that there was a method to the madness, and in the space of a few minutes, he could see enough of the outline of how things worked to know that this was something he could learn, and understand… 

And it was something that would make a huge impact on his playing. 

Tim devoured my easy guitar theory course, and I heard back from him a few weeks later. 

He was over the moon, because in the space of just a few hours, so many of his long-standing questions had been answered. 

Questions he didn’t even have a grid for how to ask… questions he didn’t know existed but suddenly realized he desperately wanted to know the answers to… 

Answered in just a couple hours as he went through the course. 

And yes, it had made an impact on his playing, even though all the transformation was in his head, and how he thought about the guitar. 

Can you relate to Tim’s story? 

If so, I recommend doing what Tim did, and checkout my Unlocking I IV V course today.

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