Crossed the Rubicon.

Discussion in 'Fred's Barcalounge' started by Jelly Roll Horton, Oct 10, 2021.

  1. Jelly Roll Horton

    Jelly Roll Horton Country Gent

    Nov 10, 2017
    Portland, OR
    Sort of. After five years of study, lessons, and almost daily practice, I today finally realized that I now possess a modicum of understanding of how to effectively play my instrument. Not expert. Not advanced. Not Cliff Gallup. Not Mark Knopfler. But confident that I now have the basic skills and confidence to sit in and play with others.
    Many times I have questioned myself: "Who am I kidding? I should have started this when I was 12." "I’m too old to learn this." But just as many times someone would say, "Just stay with it. There will come a time, a moment, when a light goes on and it all begins to come together. You’ll realize, ‘I can do this’." Today for me the light went on. It might only be 15 watts, but at least it’s working. :p
    I know most of the people here are way past that epiphany stage, but for those who like me are in the earlier stages of guitar wonderousness, I want to say, "Just stay with it. There will come a time, a moment, when a light goes on and it all comes together." Frustration, discouragement, confusion, self doubt - - - It’s all worth it. Hang on. You can do it.
    MIke M, Runamok, capnhiho and 21 others like this.
  2. Andrew Griffin

    Andrew Griffin Synchromatic

    Oct 22, 2015
    Good to read! I'll keep on trying. There's a lot of fun in learning.
    Jerzey Bob and Jelly Roll Horton like this.
  3. THS3171

    THS3171 Electromatic

    Jan 20, 2020
    31787 Hameln Germany
    Gratulations. Thank You for sharing this experience.
    You gave me hope :)
    Jerzey Bob and Jelly Roll Horton like this.
  4. Gretschzilla

    Gretschzilla Electromatic

    Apr 20, 2021
    Saint Paul, MN USA
    Thanks for the dose of hope on a Sunday afternoon. It feels good to read about your progress and feel hope about my own.
    Jerzey Bob and Jelly Roll Horton like this.
  5. Stefan87

    Stefan87 Country Gent

    May 20, 2019
    Brisbane, Australia
    That's awesome to hear you crossed that bridge, I do remember a thread you put up awhile ago stating how you were a little bit down about how your playing was going, keep it up.
    Jerzey Bob and Jelly Roll Horton like this.
  6. rake_ether

    rake_ether Gretschie

    Aug 24, 2019
    Athens, GA USA
    Congratulations. I've just started year 3 and am not nearly ready to cross any river. Thanks for the encouragement.
    Jerzey Bob and Jelly Roll Horton like this.
  7. new6659

    new6659 Country Gent

    Congratulations @Jelly Roll Horton and good for you! I've been playing for almost 55 years and regularly discover new, wonderful things on the fingerboard that have been hiding in plain sight all these years.
    Jerzey Bob and Jelly Roll Horton like this.
  8. LivingMyDream

    LivingMyDream Friend of Fred

    Congrats to you, JRH, and thanks for sharing it.

    I have gone through my own little epiphany this past month, as I have pursued an understanding of soloing. I picked up a book that I had bought years ago, and started understanding things that I couldn't understand before. It brought together a number of things that I hadn't recognized as needing to understand together to find the keys. Now it's about doing some woodshedding. That's when I'll move all the way up to lousy. :)
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2021
    Jerzey Bob and Jelly Roll Horton like this.
  9. NJDevil

    NJDevil Synchromatic

    Jul 9, 2014
    Commack, NY
    Congrats indeed JRH! For me this bridge was crossed when I could play my acoustic and sing in jams to 10+ songs and then started gigging with a buddy back in college for acoustic sets. I played "my material" and he backed me up and the same for his leads and my rhythm support.

    For electric? A different beast as I must always fight the perpetual urge to play all genres and be a pro. I then ground myself back to reality, a process of 32 years and still ongoing, and enjoy the growth of my own style....knowing it is quite O.K. to play the music of my mentors while not trying to sound like them, learning to integrate different tones to support what I play vs. forcing the issue.

    NHL coach Pete Deboer once said that he partitions a season into 10-game increments to allow for real analysis to provide a path to "adjustments and improvements". I've taken the same approach the past 10 years. Sure I take a few steps back at times from where I want to be but the approach sets the vision of playing as a marathon of enjoyment vs. a sprint or dash to some kind of player whose desire is to become the "King of 6-string"! ;)
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2021
    Jelly Roll Horton and Jerzey Bob like this.
  10. radd

    radd Country Gent

    Dec 27, 2017
    Playing guitar
    I have those moments……Sadly they don’t prevent the days when nothing goes right and you see another kid on YouTube playing better than yourself :(

    However, it is a cycle I’m used to…:D

    Anyway, congrats @Jelly Roll Horton
    Jerzey Bob and new6659 like this.
  11. Archtops

    Archtops Country Gent

    Mar 4, 2021
    Congratulations on the achievement. Lately I’ve been finding that green room myself.
    Jerzey Bob likes this.
  12. Jerzey Bob

    Jerzey Bob Synchromatic

    Apr 3, 2021
    North Jersey
    Bro, I'm late 50's & started learning slide 6 months ago. No one should EVER think you can't something because of age. There's just too much fun to be had.

    I live for those Beavis & Butthead "lightbulb moments". :cool: Just look at the posts above to see the motivation you've inspired.
    NJDevil and Craig Encinitas like this.
  13. thunder58

    thunder58 Super Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 23, 2010
    tappan ny
    Admin Post
    Congratulations @Jelly Roll Horton . @Jerzey Bob couldn't have said it better
    Jerzey Bob likes this.
  14. Congrats. If one can find an inner peace with what they enjoy, thats ain’t life moment. I am always pigeon holing myself, so its not easy for me to get to a pint where i can say I’m satisfied. I was at the point once, then i went to see tommy Emanuel. Changed my perspective. So i still practice.
    radd likes this.
  15. Hickeroar

    Hickeroar Gretschie

    Oct 4, 2020
    This made me so encouraged with where I am as a musician. Just knowing that if I stick with it, it will eventually come.

    After playing cowboy-chord acoustic for ages, I decided to actually learn theory and electric guitar about a year and a half ago. I've just started actual lessons after self teaching and playing like crazy since then, and am realizing how crazy far I have to go to be what I would consider a "good musician."

    I love seeing something like this and learning what reasonable expectations look like. Thanks for sharing!
    Jelly Roll Horton and rake_ether like this.
  16. NJDevil

    NJDevil Synchromatic

    Jul 9, 2014
    Commack, NY
    What I really love is the thrill of the chase. I have my goals, I know what I want to play but the best things happen in the unexpected detours.

    I have expanded a great deal of dynamics to my playing by "accidents" that happen which actually lead me to licks and phrases that serve another purpose but I very happily keep for other material. I find the pursuit and the ability to make music extremely rewarding and often walk away smiling that I didn't even touch the material I had intended to play and "perfect".....nah, instead I learned something else by accident because my technique took me elsewhere. I end my practice session with a smile.
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2021
    new6659 and Jelly Roll Horton like this.
  17. dougmon

    dougmon Synchromatic

    Jan 9, 2013
  18. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Admin Post
    It seems like there comes a point where things suddenly gel. I've seen it in music and seen something similar in other fields. The best part is that progress is durable.
  19. Glaw

    Glaw Gretschie

    Aug 30, 2017
    I just play for my own enjoyment and used to get frustrated wondering if I was ever going to feel like I can really play guitar. I recently retired from teaching but over the years I inspired a good number of students to take up guitar. The funny (not to me) thing is I would get them started with basics but by the end of the year they were already way better than me. Although I’ve been playing over 40 years most that time was simple chords and songs with those chords. The first thing that inspired me to get serious was getting great equipment. 6120 ssu and fender blues jr.. Once I heard a sound that inspired I started to love what I was playing. Today I’m very comfortable with my playing but always working to add to it. My latest epiphany is different tunings, which have added songs I never thought I could play. Who knew, I know most of you guys on here.
  20. capnhiho

    capnhiho Country Gent

    Feb 16, 2013
    I’m 72, restarted guitar lessons again a couple of years ago. For a while I was somewhat anxious about my lack of talent and progress. Life became simpler and my stress level dropped when I realized that I’ll never be great, but I can have a lot of fun learning! I “thinned the herd” down to four modest but really nice guitars and settled on two Quilter amps and a Micro Cube.
    YMMV, but RELAX!!
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