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Hi everyone, this is my first ever post on the Forum. I wanted to say hello and thank everyone who has contributed to the various topics on the site.
I've been playing a guitar now for nearly 40 years - I guess I'm never going to be famous at this stage of the game but who cares - the enjoyment I get out of strumming and studying guitar is just immense, I get the feeling that there are a lot of others just like me out there in their lounge rooms/porches/study's twanging away.
My goal when I first started playing back in the 80s was to be able to take a 'scorching lead break' a la Jimmy Page, Gary Moore. Trouble was I only knew a few basic chords and the fretboard was just a mystery to me. How did all those guys know what to play? They surely were not (knowingly) saying to themselves I'll play this individual note now, followed by that one - it all happened so quickly and smoothly.
It always seemed to me that there was a thick fog over the fretboard and only very occasionally would the mists part to reveal a new fragment of it to me then quickly they would close over again and I'd be back to playing Streets of London* another zillion times.
Then I discovered Kirk's book PlaneTalk, you only have to take one glance at it to know that it lives up to it's name of being 'Totally Different'. I'm making a concentrated effort to really get into it at the moment as I've been stuck in box 1 of the pentatonic scale for the last six years or so. I just finished the Blues PT lessons and can I just say that within 1 day I'm now playing all over the neck of the guitar with only the occasional bum note thrown in (I just play it twice and it sounds cool [the bum note] that's the beauty of the blues). Not thinking too much about pentatonic shapes at all but only of the PlaneTalk shapes. I'm hoping the upward learning curve will continue and the mists of the fretboard will be blown away forever.
Can someone let me know if I have this right in my head - that the most basic principle of PlaneTalk is to play on top of or around the chord that is being played. Is it just as easy to play over a non-blues piece of music? I guess I'll find out soon enough. Does anyone out there have any recommendations for where to go to from here? Are there any specific lessons on the site that step up gradually? Some of the comments seem very theory-heavy but I guess it's best to start thinking of notes as numbers, 1-3-5 etc and b3 for minor and build it up from there.
Anyway, sorry to ramble on too much, looking forward to more posts and tips from everyone. Lastly a big thank-you to Kirk for starting all this.
*No offence meant to Ralph McTell who is an awesome player and singer.
By Kirk Lorange
PlaneTalk? Can't you spell, Kirk?
Yes, I know. I get asked that question more than any other. It looks like a spelling mistake, it has nothing to do with guitars...
Go back in time to 1993: I had decided that a comic strip would be the best way to convey the lesson I wanted to teach. I needed my two characters -- the guy who knows and the guy who doesn't -- trapped together long enough for the lesson to unfold. I first thought they could be stuck in an elevator together, but what a boring bunch of illustrations that would be. Then I realized that I had often been trapped next to a total stranger for hours on end whenever I flew long distances. A plane! Perfect, and fun to draw too. So I came up with the story and drew up 38 pages of comic strips in which my two characters have a nice long plain English talk about how to make sense of music and guitars. Plain talk ... plane talk ... PlaneTalk. (The full book is 72 Pages).
So there you go. Not the best title from a marketing point of view, but I'm stuck with it now. My brother Gerry, who designed the cover and edited the text for me, came up with the subtitle 'The Truly Totally Different Guitar Instruction Book' ... because it is. From the lesson it teaches, to the comic strip format, to the slide rule that comes with it, to the fact that buyers can ask me, the author, questions at the private forum on a daily basis ... truly totally different.
You can also check out more testimonials on the PlaneTalk Faceook Page.
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