Mick Goodrick – The Advancing Guitarist
Jun 16 2016
Veteran musician and educator Mick Goodrick presents practical information for guitarists who want to improve their playing technique and style and simply become better musicians. Rather than a step-by-step method book, the information is presented in a general essay format, discussing ways that the various techniques covered may be applied by the advancing guitarist to enhance his/her own style of playing, some of the areas discussed include: basic fingerboard mechanics; modes, scales and chords; contemporary harmony; harmonica and overtone influences; being self-critical; improvising short pieces; different playing situations.
This is probably the greatest guitar instructional ever. What is the most amazing thing about this book, is that you can apply it to your playing no matter what level you are. It’s written so well, and is so accessible, that you get out of it what you can, every time you look at it you might learn or realize something different.
This book is, as the title suggests for the “Advancing Guitarist.” You need to have a solid foundation in a few things in order to a: understand what he discusses, b: practice what he suggests, and c: glean information to incorporate into your own playing. A short non-comprehensive list of the foundation elements you will probably need to have down before picking up this book are: 1) knowing how to read music (not tabs, real music (you do not need to be a master at sight-reading, but you should at least be comfortable with sheet music)); 2) Basic Music Theory (This is a bit ambiguous, I know. You should be familiar with scale formulas, chord formulas, intervals, and modes. Ideally you should have all the major scale formulas memorized, the circle of fifths is your friend.); and 3) Basic left and right hand techniques (You need to be able to grab almost any chord immediately, with no delay, you should also have most barre chord formulas memorized. With the right hand, if you are right handed, you need to be comfortable individuating the string, in other words, playing individuals strings rather than all the strings in a strum.)
This is not a method. It’s a conceptual approach that helps you open your mind to the possibilities of the guitar. The book does not contain a lot of “practical application” examples. You have to figure out how you want to apply this material. The author explores the complexity of the guitar and puts it in perspective…an admirable achievement. Great observations and insight into the learning process. Deep stuff!
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