Guitar Lessons in Philadelphia
What Are Musical Fundamentals? Part #1
What is a fundamental? It is defined by merriam-webster.com as “of or relating to the basic structure or function of something.” Musical fundamentals are those elements which pertain to playing or creating music needing to be in place in order to guarantee a strong level of success or accomplishment. Playing music requires certain basics to be learned which will enable you to be more creative, expressive and ultimately just have the fun you want with your instrument. Taking guitar lessons in Philadelphia with a credible instructor will avail you of this opportunity. Today we’ll be taking a look at one of these components: reading!
The guitar is notoriously known as an instrument played by “feel.” Do you really have to know how to read? Many of the greats didn’t or don’t. Some people looking for guitar lessons in Philly, or anywhere for that matter, may easily get “the fear” that learning to play may require them to read music, a fate abhorred akin to death: the death of creativity, oh my God – I’ll have to study, this won’t be cool – it will be like school, I’ll have to work and this SHOULD be fun, etc. Well, you probably won’t die and more likely will learn something relevant to playing music on your guitar if you learn how to read on the instrument. It’s one of music’s fundamentals and it’s probably the most effective method of helping you to learn the names of the notes on your guitar. If you’re going to study guitar, learning the names of the notes on your instrument will be of great help. Your notes are your friends and wouldn’t it be a worthwhile endeavor to learn the names of those friends you visit every day if your playing your guitar on that basis or to whatever extent you are?
Learning to read music is not the end-all-be-all in learning guitar, but it will make the overall flow of your adventure much easier in the long run. And tell me, why does anyone want to play the guitar? Because it’s fun, it’s cool, it provides enjoyment and expression, it enables a young guy to get the attention of a pretty young girl, etc. Whatever the reason, if you play, you’ll probably want to continue for the rest of your life so you may want to really know more about what it is you’re actually engaged in. Make sense?
Those who are looking to take guitar lessons have an awareness that this is traditionally the first area looked at. It makes sense to identify and define the thing and area you’re working on; it’s a basic. When I learned how to play, the first activity on which I embarked was to learn how to read music. It didn’t seem so cool at the time and I wasn’t overly thrilled with the activity, nonetheless, it was much more helpful than I ever realized it would be.
I studied from the time I was 9-12, about 2 1/2 years and much of that time was occupied with learning how to read. I had three instructors, one for a few lessons, a second for about a year and a third for about 1 1/2 years. We covered some different musical areas but the aspect given the greatest amount of focus, at least initially was reading music.
One area of learning to play music which is vital is the discipline of learning how to practice. My instructors were helpful and I appreciated everything they gave me very much, but I did not develop as strong a practice discipline as I could have. If one learns a strong and disciplined (the word discipline is derived from the Latin, disciplina, which means pupil) method of practice and applies that to reading music, boy, are they off onto an amazing adventure. Everything you learn from those areas can be applied to learning to play any kind of music, style, genre, tune, guitar solo, set of chord changes, writing music, etc. If you’re disciplined you’ll play great, know what you’re doing and probably have more fun than you could ever imagine. Again, it’s only one aspect of learning to play the guitar, but it’s probably the key to one of the first and most worthwhile doors you may enter.
If you live in or around Northeast Philadelphia and are looking for a guitar teacher call David Joel for further details and to see availability.