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WHAT'S GOING ON THIS MONTH
  • This Month's Live Streaming Guitar Lessons: TUESDAY MAY 21ST - FINGERSTYLE GUITAR WITH JOE ROBINSON. Winner of Australia's Got Talent, Joe Robinson, is one of the Fingerstyle guitars great young players. Premier Guitar says... “Once in a great while a young guitarist captures the attention of music lovers early in his career and manages to sustain this interest as he matures creatively and sheds the 'prodigy' label. Joe Robinson is one of those rare talents.” Joe will be talking about his new project and playing some great tunes. TUESDAY MAY 28TH - PLAYING BY EAR - HEARING CHORD CHANGES. One of the most important guitar skills is to hear chord changes and be able to play them by ear. With a little bit of training you can listen to songs and understand what chords are being played. Watch LIVE on our Guitar Gathering YouTube Channel. It's going to be a great month! Learn all you can!

Steve Krenz

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About Steve Krenz

  • Birthday 07/28/1966

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    Nashville, Tennessee

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  1. Neil, Yes, Joe is an amazing example of determination, passion, risk-taking and hard work. We've talked many times, on camera and off, about his amazing journey. Let me sum it up. He wanted to play guitar and decided nothing would stop his determination to make it his career. He's had tons of setbacks. None that he decided to agree with and make an excuse for not moving forward. He wasn't afraid to give up "everything" to pursue his goals. "Everything" also included his personal comfort - which is something that most stop short of when they say they are willing to do everything it takes. Yes, he gets up and practices at 4am in the morning. But I've also watched him play big events and small events with the same amount of determination. It's clear that the motivation is not the size of the event but whether he can personally do his best. He's extraordinary and we all could use a good dose of Joe's determination in our own development. - Steve
  2. Looking forward to an amazing live lesson with Australia's Got Talent winner and Fingerstyle wizard Joe Robinson! If you have any questions for Joe for tomorrow night, let me know! - Steve
  3. Hey gang, I recently had a question about playing guitar on hymns from a hymnbook. It's something I have to do quite a bit. Here's the deal... Hymns are surprisingly tricky for a guitar player. Most hymns are written by keyboard players for keyboard players so they are commonly written on a piano staff with treble and bass clef. For a guitar player, trying to keep up with reading two different clefs, all of those notes and no chord changes can make even a pro sweat a bit. Add a choir and a piano player an no rehearsal and you have the makings of a Sunday morning heart attack! When in Doubt - Just Play the Melody As a guitar player, here are your options, you can read and play the single-note melody (usually the top line) pretty easily. I can usually do this with one time through rehearsing - especially if I'm already familiar with the song. If You Have Time - Grab a Pencil, Figure Out the Chords and Strum Along If I want to try to play chords and strum, things can get a bit trickier. To try to analyze the chords takes a bit more time - generally more than I can read at sight. So, I'll take 5 minutes and go through the song, analyze the chords and jot down the chords above the melody line. If you can, take a minute and try to figure out the chords. Look at the bass line - often that will outline what the chords are doing. Then try to analyze the chord tones above the bass to assimilate them into a familiar chord that works in the key. (Don't get too perplexed if the melody note doesn't match the underlying chord tones exactly. Melodies don't have to follow the chord tones exactly.) Think of it as a puzzle! Usually the chord has 4 notes - i.e. four part harmony. Here are the clues... Example 1: Bass note is G. Notes above it are D, and B, and melody note is a G. This is pretty easy. This would be a G major chord... G. Example 2: Bass note is a C. Notes above it are F, and A, and melody note is an A. This is an F chord with a C in the bass... F/C. If you want to play the C in the bass then great, other wise just play a standard F chord and it will work. Example 3: The key of the song is A. Bass note is a D#. Notes above it are F#, and B, and melody note is an A. (First let's determine what the chord is and then we'll figure out why it's there.) Your chord tones are D#-F#-B-A. In this order they don't make a lot of sense. But if I switch them into a different order - B-D#-F#-A, they turn into a B7. But the D# is in the bass so it would be a B7/D#. Now, why do you think a B7/D# would be in a song in A? The answer?... I would bet that it is functioning as a secondary dominant ( a V of V) and that the next chord is some sort of an E chord (the V chord in A). Yep, hymns are tricky. Simplify the Chord Changes Another way hymns are tricky is that they are often written with constant chord movement, so if I strictly write out the chords I'll end up with chords changing every beat. (Keyboard players like their movement!) But often, with a bit of thought, all of this movement can be greatly simplified to where they can be played on guitar much easier. Example: The analyzed chords may be... || G - G - Am - G/B | C - C/E - C/G - C || But don't worry about all of this bass line movement - especially if it is just between chord tones. This progression can be simplified to just a measure of G and a measure of C. Just Do the Best You Can and Smile Here's my general rule. If I have time to write it out then I'll do that. If I don't, and I don't know the song, then I'll just play the single-note upper line melody. If I do know the song, then I'll glance at the bass line and strum the chords that make sense to my ear go along with the song. Occasionally I'll miss a few but generally I'll be pretty close. Hope this helps.
  4. Tuesday May 21st, 2019 Topic: Fingerstyle Guitar with Joe Robinson! “ONCE IN A GREAT WHILE A YOUNG GUITARIST CAPTURES THE ATTENTION OF MUSIC LOVERS EARLY IN HIS CAREER AND MANAGES TO SUSTAIN THIS INTEREST AS HE MATURES CREATIVELY AND SHEDS THE ‘PRODIGY’ LABEL. JOE ROBINSON IS ONE OF THOSE RARE TALENTS.” - Premier Guitar Joe Robinson https://www.joerobinson.com/ is a self-taught Australian guitarist who has toured the world as a solo guitarist. He won Australia's Got Talent. (WATCH HERE) and launched his career when he was 16. He moved to Nashville and now tours the world playing solo guitar concerts. He's a relatively new friend to our Guitar Gathering family and has just released a new project. Here are a few videos.... Watch it live at 7pm Central tonight HERE Great music, giveaways and more. See you there! Make sure to subscribe to our Guitar Gathering YouTube Channel HERE Learn all you can - Steve
  5. Hey Gang, I wanted to let you know that I'm looking forward to being in the Denver/Longmont area next week! If you live in the Denver or Longmont area and might be interested in catching a private lesson with me while I'm in the area, I've got a few slots available. It's first come, first served. So, if you're interested let me know! I'll be doing a workshop on Wednesday night but I should have some time perhaps on Tuesday or Thursday for a few lessons. Just shoot me an email at Service@MightyOakMusic.com and we'll try to work out a time. (Tuesday night, Wednesday afternoon, or Thursday morning are the best times for me.) Acoustic or Electric. We can work on whatever you need help with. I look forward to being in your area this weekend! Thanks for being a great part of our guitar family! - Steve
  6. Hey gang, We had the live lesson with Rick Derringer last night. What an amazing guy with such Rock and Roll history. There's folks that know Rock history and then there's folks that lived it. From Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, to Eric Clapton, to Weird Al Yankovic, Rick Derringer has been in the middle of that. From the first few minutes of the live lesson I realized that my plans and script for this live lesson were going to be useless. It was one of the few live lessons that I felt pretty out of control. Rick just started talking and rarely came up for air, each story more amazing than the last. I'm sure many of you were wondering why he didn't play. (Here we had one of the greatest living guitarists, who played on countless hits, and I think he played just a handful of chords then entire broadcast.) Well, here's the deal. He recently, injured his hand, and the part of the finger that was still injured was just at the point where the finger contacts the strings. Any of you who have had an injury in just that place on your finger can relate and know exactly the razor-blade like pain on touching the strings that comes with it. I found out about it only about an hour before the show. So, we decided to make the best of it and just talk about the guitars that he was offering for sale at Gruhn's. He was a very kind man on and off camera. I'd love to have him back sometime - and get to hear him play! - Steve
  7. Any questions for Rick Derringer tonight? - Steve
  8. Looking forward to a great show tomorrow night with Rick. If you have a question for Rick, just post it and I'll try to ask him. Should be a great time! - Steve
  9. Great question, I'm glad you're learning. Session 2 in the Fingerstyle course is a big one, so it's not surprising to me if it takes a month or two. This session is all about muscle control and finger dexterity. In other words, getting your fingers to cooperate with what your brain is telling them to do. My advice is to practice it slowly and carefully. The primary goal is to get the finger motions correct. Once you do that then it's pretty easy to pick up the tempo. But speed will never happen until the finger motions are correct. So focus mainly on getting the finger motions correct. Try and get as many notes and strings to ring out as possible. In other words - don't cut off notes or strings before you need to. Strive for a very smooth and legato flowing sound - not short and choppy. Follow along with me in the video at the end of your practice session to make sure you are doing the exercise correctly. Hope this helps. Glad you're part of our guitar family! - Steve
  10. Wonderful! We have that on our resources for this month. It's a good, foundational theory book. STEVE VAI GUITAR BUNDLE Lots of creativity. Learn all you can from everywhere you can. - Steve
  11. Hey gang, This month, I've found some great resources for learning the amazing Steve Vai. Arguably one of the best Rock guitarists on the planet, Steve Vai has had a legendary career with lots of Grammy's on his fireplace mantel. He's a brilliant player. I remember being in Clarkston, Washington doing music for a camp when I saw his world-record breaking online guitar lesson. One of the questions that a wannabe asked him was "What do I do to play like you?". I thought Steve's answer was brilliant. He answered.... "Do what I did." I searched through a bunch of resources to find the best ones for learning "what he did". And here's what I found... Steve Vai's Guitar Workout Book Steve Vai Guitar Play-Alongs Steve Vai's Music Theory Book for Guitarists - Vaideology We put them all in a bundle and made them available for you at a great price. You can check them out HERE. Guitar World Presents STEVE VAI'S GUITAR WORKOUT (40pg Book) Since its appearance in Guitar World in 1990, Vai's intensive guitar regimen has been the Holy Grail for serious players. Here is the lesson that shaped a generation of guitarists. Vai sat down with guitarist/transcriber Dave Whitehill and outlined his practice routine for Guitar World. Never before had a guitarist given such an in-depth explanation of his musical exercise regimen. It became a must-have for guitarists. Many of the players interviewed have cited it as an influence on their development as guitarists. Here's a chance to experience the workout in its original form and to learn some of the things Vai has done to develop his formidable chops and remarkable music vocabulary. In this book, Steve Vai reveals his path to virtuoso enlightenment with two challenging guitar workouts – one 10-hour and one 30-hour – which include scale and chord exercises, ear training, sight-reading, music theory, and much more. Here are some sample pages... STEVE VAI GUITAR PLAY ALONG (88pg Book & Online Audio) The Guitar Play-Along Series will help you play your favorite songs quickly and easily! Just follow the tab, listen to the sound-alike audio to hear how the guitar should sound, and then play along using the separate backing tracks. The audio is available online for download or streaming, and it is enhanced so you can adjust the recording to any tempo without changing pitch! 8 Steve Vai classic songs written in music and TAB including: The Attitude Song • The Crying Machine • Die to Live • For the Love of God • I Would Love To • Sunshine Electric Raindrops • Tender Surrender • Touching Tongues. Here are some sample pages... VAIDEOLOGY: Basic Music Theory for Guitar Players (96 pg Book) Named Guardians of Guitar 2019 NAMM top pick! Experience must-know music knowledge and wisdom through the highly focused lens of legendary guitar virtuoso Steve Vai. This full-color instructional book written by Vai himself features in-depth discussions of the music theory fundamentals that every aspiring (and veteran) guitar player should know, packed with practical exercises, diagrams, tips, inspiring ideas and concepts, practice methods, and ways of looking at music that you may have never considered. Topics covered include: academic vs. experiential learning • reading and writing music • key signatures • chord scales • rhythm basics • guitar harmonics • modes • and much more. This beautiful book is full-color throughout and features artwork on every page by Vai! Three powerful resources personally created by Steve Vai to help you reach your guitar goals. His Personal Legendary Workouts Learn and Play Classic Steve Vai Songs His explanation of Music Theory for Guitar Players You can check them out HERE. Learn all you can! - Steve
  12. April 23rd, 2019 Topic: Rock Legend Rick Derringer: Guitars and Stories! "...his guitar playing influenced me to play slide guitar." - Duane Allman, The Allman Brothers Band Toured with the Rolling Stones, played guitar along side John Lennon, Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughn. Recorded with Steely Dan, Barbara Streisand, Air Supply, Edgar Winter, Ringo Starr, The McCoys, Cyndi Lauper, KISS, Alice Cooper and countless others. Rick's amazing career has included writing "Hang On Sloopy" in the 60s, "Rock and Roll Hoochie Koo" in the 70s, playing guitar on "Total Eclipse the Heart" and Air Supply's "Making Love Out of Nothing at All" in the 80s, to producing Weird Al Yankovic's "Eat It", to modern day work topping the Smooth Jazz charts and writing for the FX series "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia". Rick will be shows some of his personal collection of guitars and talking about his amazing career. Here are a few videos... Back in the day with Edgar Winter "Rock and Roll Hoochie Koo"
  13. Hey all, It's been an exciting day on the Guitar Gathering conference front. I'm excited to announce that we've officially confirmed that Russ Barenberg will be leading a workshop and playing for the evening concert! Russ is one of my favorite guitar players on the planet. He has the ability to touch the strings and make your heart feel emotion. I'd trade every fast lick I know to be able to play a simple chord progression and have the emotional impact that Russ has on the listener. Russ has played on countless things. Here are a few... If you've ever been watching the Ken Burns documentary "The Civil War" and melted at the gorgeous guitar playing throughout it - that's Russ. If you've watched the acclaimed BBC series "The Transatlantic Sessions" with guests like James Taylor and Allison Krause and wondered who was playing guitar - that's Russ. Or maybe you've caught him in one of his legendary nights at a small club here in Nashville... I look forward to hearing his music once again. See you at the Gathering! http://www.guitargathering2019.com/ - Steve
  14. Triple O, Do you have a recording of it I could hear? A YouTube video perhaps. If I can hear it then I can probably help you out with what is going on. THanks, STeve

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