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Fingerstyle Essentials | Fingerpicking Pattern No. 2

Hey everyone,

 

I wanted to share with you something I came up with recently. For all you beginners out there, I wanted to share my most important fingerstyle patterns that I learnt during my first 1,5 Years on the guitar.

It’s a nice 8th note pattern that builds up dynamically and allows for quite some emotional and intense fills and runs in your own performances.

Website Insert

Click here to download the study (.pdf format)

Fingerpicking Pattern No. 2

 

This fingerstyle study consists of three parts.

Part one shows you the very basic pattern. Starting with your middle finger (M), going over to your index finger (I), repeating that pattern and then moving up to the ring finger (R) and then a rundown with your M, I  before returning to your M.

So the basic version of this pattern in PIMA-format looks like this:

M-I-M-I-R-M-I-M

1  +  2 + 3  + 4 +

 

The second level of this pattern includes the bass note. On the 1 you simply add the respective bass note of the chord you are playing with the thumb (T).  So, say you are playing an Am chord. You then want to play the open 5th string.

M/T-I-M-I-R-M-I-M

1  +  2 + 3  + 4 +

 

Then I show you a small alteration of the pattern which gives you the possiblity of bridging to another chord or another sequence or generally a verse  or a chorus, depending on your arrangement’s or song’s structure.

M-I-M-I-R_R R_R     (R_R = like a tie; holding the note)

1  +  2 + 3  + 4 +

 

My approach ever since I started out as a beginner on the guitar was to transform everything I learn into music and having fun with it. That’s why I always want to show you what you can do with the stuff that I am showing you.

Below you will find my arrangement of “Mary Had A Little Lamb” in Am, featuring this beautiful fingerpicking pattern! Go check it out and don’t forget to leave a like, a comment and most importantly, to subscribe to my channel!

See you next time!

And don’t forget to have fun with your guitar! 😉

Lukas

 

 

 

Musicarium Songbook by Andy McKee and Truefire.com

Musicarium Songbook by Andy McKee and Truefire.com

 

Author:            Andy McKee

Genre:              Acoustic

Style:                Fingerstyle | Acoustic

Level:               Late Intermediate / Advanced

Features:         Tabs (.pdf) & GP5 files

Lessons:          38 Videos (incl. introduction & conclusion) | 188 Minutes

 

Today’s review is going to be about Andy McKee’s first course for Truefire.com called “Musicarium Songbook”. In this review I am going to give you a brief introduction to Mr. McKee, highlighting some milestones in his career as well as my own opinion on him, having followed him for quite some time on YouTube. After the introduction, I will move on and discuss some of the songs and techniques within the course as well as give you a conclusion of what to expect from Mr. McKee’s first course on Truefire.com.

As I mentioned above, I have been following Andy McKee for quite a while now, growing a steady interest in fingerstyle playing! If you haven’t yet heard of him or seen him playing, go and check out his YouTube channel! One particularly good performance that I enjoyed was him playing Toto’s Africa together with the amazing and well-known Tommy Emmannuel, who happens to release a new course for Truefire almost simultaneously!

My own impression of Mr. McKee is that of a very versatile technical player with a clear joy for the instrument. By incorporating various techniques, ranging from harmonics over to percussive slaps and body percussion techniques he manages to merge sounds that form this very style, typical for modern fingerstyle guitarists!

What to do if you want to follow an idol and want to get – at least – as good as your favourite guitar player? Well, you are most likely going to study his songs… This is exactly what you are able to do with this course. You will be introduced to a total of five songs, each being an essential core of Andy McKee’s repertoire, highly instructive in terms of technical demand as well as a joy to listen to.

From an instructor who shows his own songs I would expect the following: an introduction in which the artist explains his thought process or the motivation behind the song, a clear and high quality performance of it, so you get a perfect example of “how-it-should-sound” as well as a detailed breakdown into the different parts of the song so we can slowly but surely work on the tune, working our way up until we can play the complete tune!

Let me show you if Mr. McKee managed to fulfil my expectations by having a look at his first song of the course called Drifting. The piece is broken down into six parts, starting out with an overview, a performance and a breakdown (consisting of four videos) of the piece.

The introduction teaches us what inspired Andy McKee to write the tune when he was about 18 years old. Preston Reed was the driving force behind the tune, having shown young Andy McKee that an acoustic can easily hold its ground to an electric guitar. Furthermore, you are given an overview of the different techniques that you will need to know to play the tune.

The introduction is followed by a full performance of Drifting. Here you are going to see first-hand if this tune is something you want to learn or not. It becomes evident from the get-go that this tune is a highly technical piece that requires good command of the instrument. However, for those who decide to stick with the tune and learn it, you are getting a very good recording of the tune in multiple angles to focus on the difficulties that may come up when studying the piece.

Once you have listened to the recording you are heading right into the breakdown of the tune. I cannot go too much into details here as I don’t want to spoil anything. However, I can tell you what the breakdown section is compiled of and what you can expect to learn here. First of all, the tune is divided into four sections: the intro, the verse, the chorus and the bridge.

Picture AndyMcKee.png

Throughout the breakdown videos for Drifting, about 30 minutes in total, you are getting introduced to the chords and the chord progressions in this tune. The piece is written in the DADGAD tuning, which really helps out incorporating the various over-the-neck-techniques that you use to play the chords while switching back and forth between them and the bass parts, consisting of body percussion all around the guitar body. Below you are going to find the performance of this tune to see exactly what makes this piece a demanding one!

 

 

Andy McKee’s explanations are always on-point! He understands well to break down the individual problem areas of the piece bit by bit, giving it enough time to really sink in. He is known as a very technical player and you need to know that before you attempt to follow in his footsteps. However, I cannot stress enough of how impressive his playing is and once you enter that path you are going to draw a lot out of this course!

Beware that the course will take some time as there are no simple pieces or tricks to make you play the pieces magically. However, the high quality recordings and cutting that is a trademark for videos and courses by Truefire.com are a real aid in learning this tune!

The course material is accompanied by tabs and notation in .pdf or .gp5 format.

 

Conclusion

For advanced fingerstyle players, those, who search for a course that serves as an artist study, “Musicarium” is the right choice! Here you are going to be challenged as the techniques used in the songs are by no means easy. Once you put the time and effort into it you will definitely benefit from the clear instructions and the amazing pieces that were chosen for this course.

Lukas Wedrychowski

MeridirhProductions.com – ‘cause music matters

 

This course was provided by Truefire.com

#ProgressLog – June 2017

Hey everyone,

 

I really hope you are doing well! I wanted to let you know what I did throughout June and what I am planning on doing throughout July!

As you probably know, I have added the Cajón and the Ocarina to my repertoire of instruments and now I am finally able to record some videos to show my progress!

Since the Cajón is quite different to my other instruments, I plan on doing some videos on basic technique and basic workouts. The sheet music for those workouts will soon be published here on my website, once I get a hold of the basics and am able to write my own exercises !

Anyway, let me give you another update on one of my instruments: the piano! So far, I have been following a book method, called “Die Russische Klavierschule” (The russian school of piano) and I must say, that I am not quit thrilled by it anymore. That’s why I want to give my piano practice a different touch in experimenting with a new method I wrote myself. This method is a collection of stuff and chops I learnt on my other instruments (most notably the guitar). The goal of this method is to work on the fundamentals first; not just piano related fundamentals but rather musical fundamentals. I am soon going to publish an article on it but for now I want you to know that I am going to change my practice plan for the piano, starting with July 2017!

 

 

Progress Logs:

 

Guitar

A. Repertoire

  • La Claire de La Lune (own arrangement)
  • Paganini: Caprice 24 (Theme) – late beginner/ intermediate version (arr. by Lukas Wedrychowski

B. Technique

  • Etudes
    • Fernando Sor: Opus 60 No. 1
    • Fernando Sor: Opus 60 No. 3 (in progress)
  • Scales
    • C Major Scale
    • E Major Scale
  • Chords
    • C Major
    • D Minor
    • E Minor
    • F Major
    • G Major
    • A Minor (+ inversions)
  • Rhythms
  • Techniques
    • Harmonics (12th fret harmonics)

 

Violin

A. Repertoire

  • Greensleeves
  • Mary Had a Little Lamb (in progress)
  • Ode to Joy
  • Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star (in progress)
  • La Claire de La Lune (in progress)
  • Caprice 24 (Theme) – in progress (beginner version)

B. Technique

  • Etudes
    • Napolitaine by G.F. Telemann
  • Scales
    • C Major Scale
  • Rhythms
    • ♪♪♪♪
    • ♪♪♪♫
    • ♪♪♫♫
    • ♪♫♫♫
    • ♫♫♫♫
  • Techniques
    • Bowing & Posture
    • String Crossing
    • Mid-bow bowing
    • Whole-bow bowing

 

Welcome two new members to the family :-)

Hey everyone,

 

I’ve got some big news!  There are two members joining my instrumental family. A few days ago I’ve acquired these two lovely instruments *_*

I can’t tell you how much I’m looking forward getting started with them! Over the last couple of months, I’ve been listening to these instrument on YouTube and other sites and I really fell in love with them. So I went ahead and got a cajón from Schlagwerk!

In my opinion, the cajóns from Schlagwerk are by far the best sounding ones and I’m really happy that I was lucky enough to acquire one on a relatively low price (thanks ebay).20170613_124026

Here it is!  A Madagascar cajón from Schlagwerk; 🙂

The other one is an old-time favourite of mine (nope, not due to The Legend of Zelda)… the OCARINA!

20170613_124007

Here it is! It’s a non-name product for about 13-20€. It isn’t properly tuned which makes it hard to play with other instrumens. That’s why I’m looking to purchase one from Thomann, Europe’s biggest vendor for musical equipment, in hope that the Ocarina is properly tuned :^)

 

Anyway, expect some new stuff with those two beauties!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#ProgressLog | May 2017

Hey everyone,

 

I am a bit late, sorry for that! I have something big to announce, though!

Here’s my practice plan for May; what I did there and how it went

 

Let’s start with the guitar:

Technique:

  • Etude: Fernando Sor Op. 60 No. 1
  • Scales: C-/D-/E-/F- Major Scale
  • Chords: Open Chords (revised) + some inversions of C + D + E
  • Rhythms: Some Waltz Rhythms
  • Techniques: Harmonics (more to come in June 2017)

I started my first classical etudes with Fernando Sor’s Op. 60. Those studies are some of the finest I’ve come across so far and I love them! They sound beautifully, they are short and they allow me to practice certain areas in depth.

For the scales, I’ve actually revisited my common major scales because I am currently working on more arrangements of classical songs and those are mostly written in the key of C, using the major scale for their melodies. That’s also the reason why I chose to revise those open chords again.

The waltz has been something I wanted to look into, particularly for what I’ve planned for July! That’s the point where I finish my “beginner”-level stuff and move on to the intermediate section. I just want to be sure that I cover everything I set for myself as a “beginner” before I move on.

Last, but not least, the harmonics. This neat little technique is something I’m so fond of! I really love it! At the moment, I’m trying to incorporate it as much as I can, writing songs and using it for my intermediate arrangements.

Theory:

  • Chord progressions
  • Classical Era
  • Fernando Sor biography
  • Harmonics

Repertoire:

  • Irá al jardin inglés (recording)

 

 

 

Now, let’s move on to the piano:

Technique:

  • Etudes:
    • John W. Schaum: Finger power 1 No. 1
    • John W. Schaum: Finger power 1 No. 2
    • John W. Schaum: Finger power 1 No. 3
    • John W. Schaum: Finger power 1 No. 4
    • John W. Schaum: Finger power 1 No. 5
    • John W. Schaum: Finger power 1 No. 6
    • John W. Schaum: Finger power 1 No. 7
    • John W. Schaum: Finger power 1 No. 8
    • John W. Schaum: Finger power 1 No. 9
    • Béla Bartók: Makrokosmos 1 No. 1
    • Béla Bartók: Makrokosmos 1 No. 2a
    • Béla Bartók: Makrokosmos 1 No. 2b
    • Jelena Gnessina Etude in C
    • A. Schmidt: Etude in C
  • Scales
    • C Major Scale
    • D Major Scale
  • Chords
    • Major Chords: C – D – E – F – G -A – B
  • Rhythms:
    • 4/4 – all 4th notes
  • Technique:
    • Velocity

Theory

  • Classical Era
  • Russische Klavierschule Band 1 – p. 1-21

Repertoire

  • Ode to Joy
  • Mary Had a Little Lamb

 

 

Violin

Technique

  • Etudes: (unknown) basic bow strokes
  • Scales: C major scale
  • Bowing: détaché
  • Rhythms: 4/4 4th rhythms + 4/4 alternate
  • Technique: Bowing technique

Theory

  • Classical Era
  • David Garrett biography (documentary)

Repertoire

  • Ode to Joy (own arrangement)

 

 

3D Acoustic Guitar by Vicki Genfan and Truefire.com

3D Acoustic Guitar by Vicki Genfan and Truefire.com

 

Author:          Vicki Genfan

Genre:            Acoustic / Universal

Style:              Acoustic Fingerstyle

Level:             Late Intermediate / Advanced

Features:        Tabs (.pdf) & GP5 files

Lessons: 35 Videos (incl. introduction & conclusion) | 195 Minutes

1             3D Acoustic Guitar – Introduction

2             Atomic Reshuffle – Performance

3             Tuning – Technique

4             Thumb Slaps – Technique

5             Thumb Slaps with Hammers – Technique

6             Thumb Slap Etude – Practice Etude

7             Harmonics – Technique

8             Thumb Slaps with Harmonics – Etude

9             Left Hand Harmonics – Technique

10           Body Slaps 1 – Technique

11           Body Slaps 2 – Technique

12           Kali Dreams Intro – Demonstration

13           Right Hand Harmonic Tapping – Technique

14           Harmonic Hammer-Ons – Technique

15           Hammering Single Notes – Technique

16           Groove – Maintaining Groove

17           Hammering Chords – Technique

18           Vibrato – Technique

19           Kali’s First Steps – Practice Etude

20           Kali’s First Steps – Breakdown

21           Creating Tunings – Create Your Own Tunings

22           Exploring Tunings: C2 – Step-by-Step Discovery

23           New Grass – Performance

24           Exploring Tunings: Dsus – Step-by-Step Discovery

25           Kali Dreams – Performance

26           Exploring Tunings: C-9sus4 – Step-by-Step Breakdown

27           C-9 Improv – Performance

28           Exploring Tunings: D2 – Step-by-Step Discovery

29           Let it Rain – Performance

30           Cause of You – Performance

31           Exploring Tunings: C6/9

32           Impossinova – Performance

33           Tunings Chat – Reference

34           My Gear – Guitars, strings and tuners

35           Conclusion – Have fun

 


I’ve got something very special for you out there. The course I’m going to review today is 3D Acoustic Guitar by Vicki Genfan, produced by Truefire.com. This review will be divided into four sections:

  1. Author/Lecturer
  2. Couse outline (Techniques & Songs)
  3. Target group
  4. Conclusion

 

1          Author/Lecturer

I must admit that I haven’t heard about Vicki Genfan before exploring some of Truefire’s courses on rhythm guitar. That’s something I feel pretty bad about, now that I had the chance to read about and listen to this amazing guitar player! It is difficult to describe Vicki Genfan’s playing style or genre. She’s certainly a fingerstyle guitarist, however, she draws from various musical genres and combines it in what is difficult to summarize. You certainly hear influences of Jazz, Folk, Funk, to name a few. This cocktail of genres results in an amazing player with an incredible gift for rhythm. I definitely recommend to check her out on YouTube and to visit her website (www.vickigenfan.com). She’s particularly active in terms of rhythm courses on Truefire.com.

 

2          Course Outline

The course consists of two main parts with each being subdivided into several mini chunks. Starting out with a brief introduction in which Vicki explains what to expect from the course you are going to get an impression of her playing skills in a tune called “Atomic Reshuffle”. There you can already get a hint on what to expect in the following lessons. The moment you hear the tune you are going to realize that her style is heavily influenced by percussive sounds, as well as harmonics and alternated tunings.

After this performance, she goes on and introduces you to the first main section of the course in which you will learn more about the various techniques that are required to play the upcoming tunes. Some of these techniques may be new to you or you may have used them in a different form but be sure that all these techniques form a must-know arsenal of techniques and tools that a contemporary fingerstyle guitarist, you may also call it ‘modern fingerstyle’, needs to have.

These aforementioned techniques, i.e. percussion, harmonics, etc., shall also serve you as the very spark that ignites you, puts you on fire and keeps your motivation and inspiration growing. Some of those techniques come with special etudes, i.e. studies that help you grow your technical skills in a musical way. That way you get immediately into practicing the techniques in a way that enhances your technical skills, those you will need to prove yourself when we come to the songs that are within this course.

Moving away from the pure technical part, you come to the second section that spans several important concepts of exploring your instrument: alternate (open) tunings. Following the course, you are going to get inside into the vast possibilities of alternate tunings, the new sounds that you can reach on your guitar and even a new way of economizing your picking. You will be pushed to explore new tunings, tunings that are part of your playing and that define your style.

Once you’ve finished the course you are going to find a reference chart of the open tunings that you’ve discussed during the course, giving you visual aid that will help you get started with the tunings in case you have a hard time memorizing them, say, if you are new to alternate tunings in general.

 

3          Target group

As for the techniques and tunings that form the main body of this course, you can’t expect this course to be anywhere within the range and reach of a beginner. The concepts that are introduced here go far beyond basic chords, basic rhythms and basic techniques that are related to the beginner’s stage. I would recommend this course to rather advanced players. However, if you are beyond the beginner stage, delving into intermediate material and feel you need to study a particular area, say rhythm, in depth you may lay your hands on this course but be aware that the course will be demanding. As I’ve mentioned several times by now, the content is incredibly complex, despite Vicki Genfan’s easy, accessible and highly didactic method of explaining the content of this course so that everyone can understand it. But understanding things in music and being able or even ready to play it are, in my humble opinion, two different things. So be reminded that you can grow huge with this course but may need strong willpower if you are not yet familiar with the basics of playing. On the other hand, if you are a seasoned player, you may very well draw a lot out of this course, further expand your style and learn new voicings that give you a whole new world to explore.

 

4          Conclusion

If you are on the lookout for a course that helps you get beyond the beginner stage, developing basics on the guitar, this course may not be for you. On the other hand, however, if you are someone who wants to practice his rhythmic play, by adding percussive elements to your playing, emulating a bass player, or if you are someone who is just on the search for a whole new open world to explore, given the alternate tunings you will find in this course or the various techniques that will make your playing more interesting, then this is what you’ve been looking for.

Personally, now that I’ve finished the course, I think differently about the title of this course. In the beginning, I was wondering what “3D guitar” may be. Now, having learnt so much from Vicki, I know that the beautiful instrument I dedicate so much time to, has many different aspects to it that were always there, I simply had to alter my perspective in order to find new, unexplored blank spots on the map. I wish you all the best in exploring your instrument and creating new sounds; sounds that fit your style and that are yours to use.

 

 

Lukas Wedrychowski

MeridirhProductions – ‘cause music matters

 

This course was provided by Truefire.com

My huge project!

Hey everyone,

 

I wanted to let you know what I’d planned for so long.

Ever since I started out with music, I wanted to write a suite, a collection of pieces for a special event. Now this very moment has finally come! As part of my plan to propose to my girlfriend, asking her if she wants to marry me.

For this very moment I have written 7 original pieces for Fingerstyle Guitar, pieces which cover our time and relationship. Those 7 pieces are therefore the very essence of our journey.

The idea was that the first few letters of each piece shall form the question (translated from German) “Do you want to marry me?/Will you marry me?”. This is meant as a very personal gift for her to thank her for our time together and for what lies ahead of us.

Below you will find the seven pieces 🙂

1 – [Will] – Will of the Unknown

2 – [st] – Still in my heart

3 – [du] – Du cœur

4 – [mich] – Mi-chemin

5 – [he] – Heyho Blues (I’m new to you)

6 – [ira] – Irá al jardin inglés

7 – [ten] – Ten days in Albaida del Aljarafe

 


Those pieces include, beside our common story, our passion for languages. We are passionate learners of foreign languages and our common languages are English, French, Spanish which led to the incorporation of those three languages.

🙂 It took me so long to finally write these pieces and I’m happy it’s completed!

Today was the day I proposed to her and asked her if she wants to become my wife… and she said…..

 

!!!!!!!!!! YES !!!!!!!!!!

 

 

I’m so happy that I want to share with you one of those pieces that I wrote for her. I plan on releasing the others as well but for now I can only show you the 6th piece our of my suite.

I hope you’ll enjoy it 🙂

The sheet music will be published soon!

6 – Irá al jardin inglés  – by Lukas Wedrychowski