Caught in the Middle

Discussion in 'How To Improvise Blues Solos' started by DrRock, May 18, 2017.

  1. DrRock

    DrRock Blues Newbie

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    Occasionally on the discussion board, we see discussions about counting versus playing by feel. Of course we know Griff advocates counting. I agree with him, but most often I find, especially if I'm doing a longer solo or a full song, that I fairly soon lose focus on the counting, and so have to fall back on winging it. I've tried to overcome this loss of focus, but without much success.

    Well if you're caught in the middle between counting and winging it like I am, I would strongly advocate this course. I'm only part way through it, but am already seeing a dramatic improvement in being able to focus on counting. Griff is very systematic in having you work through the licks while counting until you have them down. He also suggests saying out loud the chord changes as they happen. I actually find this harder than counting, to the point that counting is starting to feel somewhat easy in comparison.

    I have a ways to go with the course, and am looking forward to continuing to work with it. Thanks Griff. This is a great course and exactly what the doctor ordered.
     
  2. Al F

    Al F Blues Newbie

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    I agree DrRock. Counting while playing guitar has always been a challenge for me, kind of like walking and chewing gum. The best I've been able to do is wait for a chord change and then count into and lick, never through it. This course turned it around for me as well. I'll admit that at first, it felt very mechanical. But now, it is becoming a background process which I'm able to turn on and off as I'm playing.

    The real benefit is that my timing has improved dramatically. I've always had to wait for the chord changes to reset myself and then start a lick. Now I'm playing into the chord changes and hitting that chord change note right on the beat. I've a long way to go but I can see the light. It's a beautiful thing, thanks Griff!
     
  3. DrRock

    DrRock Blues Newbie

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    Yeah Al, I know what you mean about counting into a lick but not through it. I hadn't realized it, but that might be where I'd lose my focus, and then just start guessing where to come in again. Now I'm finding myself counting through the lick and into the next chord, and being Johnny-on-the -spot with the next lick. I equate it to being like breaking a board in karate - you have to aim through the board, not at it (or so I'm told). I'm finding myself getting better at counting through the lick and keeping the counting going now. I agree, it's a beautiful thing. I hope the rest of the course is as helpful as what I've gotten out of it so far.