Early guitar releases

January 29, 2010 – 1:02 am

One of the things I’ve been starting to do while traveling is take a portable instrument with me. I’ve got two – a travel acoustic guitar and a travel 5-string fretless electric bass. And I’ve been teaching myself both. Slowly. From scratch. With no idea what I’m doing.

In the tradition of “release early release often,” I submit my first attempts at playing the guitar that resemble a recognizable song. Behold the crappiness! (If you actually like these songs and do not wish to see them butchered, do not play the videos below.)

The first song is “Blackbird,” by the Beatles.

And the second is “Diamonds and Rust,” by Joan Baez.

I learned both songs by watching the fingers of high school friends playing them, then eventually asking them to do portions of it slowly so I could watch, then hand me the guitar so I could imitate. Not long after this, they taught me to read tab notation. I memorized both songs, and then proceeded to go to college and not borrow a guitar for five years.

Every time I pick up my guitar, I try to get a little better at something. Maybe it’s just switching between the F and G7 chords. Maybe it’s having a less awkward pull-off in that one section of “Diamonds and Rust.” Maybe it won’t last into the next practice section, but maybe it will.

Learning is fun. Learning to learn is also fun. I’m context-switching between emails, guitar, and reading gstreamer tutorials tonight – and will continue to do so until interrupted by a trip to Waffle House. Life is good.

Know someone who'd appreciate this post?
  • Print
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • Identi.ca
  1. 2 Responses to “Early guitar releases”

  2. cool. That reminds me of the idea to have a Fedora-Band.
    Me is also a longtime guitarist (collected over 14 Guitars in the past 15 years…) and we all know a good bass player, you also guitar … wich leads me to the question if we could get a great combo…

    By Henrik on Jan 29, 2010

  3. Congrats, dude, that’s impressive for a newbie. I’ve started my ukulele trials exactly the same way by the way J I was on vacation that started to get boring and I decided like “Why not?”. That was my first song:
    http://mp3brains.com/search.html?q=beirut+nantes
    I picked this one because there are just 3 chords in the song and it took me 3 days to learn how to play it without mistakes. Lol I know it’s way too long but it was my first song so was proud as hell! You’re right, learning is fun and besides it makes me feel significant, like hey dude, you’ve just learnt something without any assistance! Aren’t you a ninja?! Good luck with your guitar and thanks for the post.

    By Julia Chain on Sep 4, 2013

What do you think?