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Schooligo
03-30-2003, 10:04 AM
Hi,
Sometimes I just smile whenever I get the opportunity to read the forums & the great advice:
ie. I just read the thread-Questions to keep in mind http://www.ibreathemusic.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&postid=8376#post8376

many nuggets of wisdom in that thread.

I was going to ask this question a couple of weeks ago but became sidetracked.

On to the discussion-
Time to be a little philosophical:
If I give you a book of a thousand chords and tell you to learn them.
How much am I helping you learn the guitar?

(I already know how I feel about this topic but I'd like to hear how you guys feel about it, & what you feel it is important to know!)

bRekovsKi
03-30-2003, 12:30 PM
There is actually an old Chinese saying which spans around the same theme, and I think it pretty much says it all:
"If you give a man a fish, you save his life for one day.
If you teach this man to fish, you´ll safe his life forever"
Or something like that =)

bRekovsKi
03-30-2003, 12:34 PM
There is actually an old Chinese saying which spans around the same theme, and I think it pretty much says it all:
"If you give a man a fish, you save his life for one day.
If you teach this man to fish, you´ll safe his life forever"
Or something like that.
I think that you´ll gain much more understanding if you teach yourself the ground principals behind chord construction; intervals, scales etc., rather than just memorizing the fingering.
I doesn´t help to know the whole dictionary by heart if you don´t know how to write. :)

EricV
03-30-2003, 02:01 PM
Interesting question, Schooligo.

Well, to tell someone to learn all these chords can be useful for the person, but in the long run, it won´t help to improve his musicality. Meaning that, if you look at the overall picture, it won´t help that much.

First of all ( this is only my opinion, and I sure had a bunch of discussions about it with other players ), I consider it WAY MORE EFFECTIVE and useful to UNDERSTAND how chords are constructed.
See, when I started out, I got myself one of those "357976450 chords for guitar" books ( You know what I mean, I guess ). And I looked at it and was like "Aaaargh,... gee, I do have to learn all of those ?!?!"
Then, one day I all of a sudden started to understand some things about chords: that you could move them chromatically, so if you i.e. need a F#min11-chord, and you know only an Emin11, you can simply move that chord up to frets.... voilá !
Also, I learned about modes, the major scale and how to construct chords. So when I read "Csus2", I didn´t have to look it up in a book or rely on my memory, but could simply "construct" the chord, cuz I knew what the chord name meant, how the chord was built ( 1-2-5 = C D G )

So I memorized some chords which I would move around chromatically to get whatever chord I needed, but I also learned how to "build" those chords, and used both approaches...

That´s point No.1

Point No.2 would be that: Sure, it´s great to know a lot of chords, but there is way more to being a well-rounded player / musician who´s able to play with others...
A good sense of hearing ( that´ll improve if you learn chords, but that´s beside the point now ), a sense for melody and rhythm ( cuz music has those three basic elements: harmony ( as in chords ), melody and rhythm ), playing technique ( doesn´t help to know only chords, you also need to be able to fret and play them, as in strum and fingerpick them.
Just because you know chords doesn´t mean you´re able to use them in a creative manner... to play a nice, effective rhythm guitar etc.

To make a long story short ( I know, I probably elaborated too much already ), learning bunches of chords is only one important element of your development as a player, and should be treated so... you need to work on the other factors as well !
So, to answer your question: it might be helpful to learn those chords, but you also should work on other stuff, and be able to understand the chords you learn, cuz you sure can´t memorize them all...
That´s why, when we talked about a practising schedule, I gave an example of a schedule made up of several different elements ( technique, reading, theory, transcribing, jamming, analyzing etc. )

Eric

szulc
03-30-2003, 02:31 PM
How about this approach?

http://www.ibreathemusic.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=131

Schooligo
03-30-2003, 07:00 PM
As always Great advice one & all!

but to give some clarity to the Topic:

I should have said
BTW (I already know how I feel about this topic but I'd like to hear how you guys feel about it,
& what you feel it is important to know, in regards specifically to chords.)

EricV
03-30-2003, 07:03 PM
Yeah, and I was just posting my opinion on this... :)
Eric

Schooligo
03-30-2003, 07:14 PM
I apologize for not clarifying,

I know the great amount of knowledge that many of you have,
& needless to say I should have taken into greater account, as helpful as many of you are, you will give the most complete answer possible,

Thank You!

Bongo Boy
03-31-2003, 04:48 PM
As I've recently posted, I thought I was struggling with chords--until I revealed my sloppy practice habits and found I wasn't actually struggling with anything--but that's another story.

Early on I bought "The Boy's Big Book of Chords" (figuratively) and I think it is, in a way, debilitating just like tablature is. It certainly doesn't help me understand how to construct them, how to choose particular voicings, or how to articulate them on the guitar to make them sound right.

I just finished a visit with my parents who both play at the piano--mom was showing me some chords and we got into a discussion of a particular Gma chord. She simply 'knew' from practice that a particular voicing was Gma (or G7, I can't remember). It was exciting for her when I wrote down the chord stack, did a first inversion, and showed her that this was what she was playing.

In my usual long-winded way, I'm saying (as I was told by iBreathe members long ago), the Big Book of Chords may provide short-term satisfaction (it didn't), but it won't provide a basis for learning music. In fact, all it did was further frustrate me because I began to leaf thru the book in search of any chord at all that I was able to actually play. Dumb approach to guitar, I think.