I picked up my guitar again. I haven’t touched it in months and months and to tell you the truth I wouldn’t be able to pin point a single reason why.
I started playing guitar at the ripe age of ten after realising my potential for being famous because who was I kidding, clearly I wasn’t going to get famous solely on my looks. Anyway, as usual my dad was supportive and helped me pick out my first little beauty. It was a small classical guitar with flowers around the sound hole. I thought it would give me the playing abilities of Rodrigo y Gabriela (seriously, you should check them out & fun fact: I took my dad to see them live a couple of years ago and yes, they were fucking amazing) but I was brutally disappointed when my guitar teacher was assigning me “G cord” scales and the “Smoke on the Water” chorus for practice, not seeing my true potential.
I definitely had some interesting guitar teachers over the years – but in all honesty, my first guitar teacher was my favourite. His name was Michael Luke. He left a lasting impression on me and made me wonder about the world. He told me stories of him playing guitar with Busby Marou (you should also check them out) and stories of his travels around various parts of the world.
He was almost always late to every single lesson I had which, I think is sort of charming in a way. My dad always called him a dreamer; he had big ideas and they often didn’t fall through. One time he wanted to put on a huge concert for all the kids he taught. We talked about it for months but it never happened. We chatted a lot. But he somehow always managed to teach me something which, is quite a difficult task for anyone (I can only imagine how hard it might be to get a kid with undiagnosed ADHD to focus for long enough to actually learn something). He taught me so much about guitar and especially about the importance of theory before learning the cooler songs. Which, is an important life lesson.
I had lessons on and off for about five or six years (it’s important to note that my experience isn’t a reflection what so ever on my current talent – which is lacking). When I first started learning I was young and keen to learn – I knew how to read sheet music and I was taught how to read tabs. I picked it up quickly. In high school I studied music and music theory for a couple of years (I quit when I realised that performing in front of others was not my cup of tea). Now I’m a lot slower and seem to have forgotten most of what I was taught. It’s a hard pill to swallow knowing that I used to be really good at something and I’ve sort of lost that.
I go through phases of playing guitar and not playing it. It usually depends on my mental state. When I get really depressed, I lose interest in it. But I wouldn’t say that stopping playing guitar has always been because of that. I find that when I have been doing something for so long it, I question why I enjoyed it in the first place.
It’s hard not to get bogged down when you can’t find a song that you like or the song that you actually like and want to learn is too hard – did I ever mention that I have no patience (woohoo ADHD)? I’m doing a lot of complaining here – sorry about that.
The thing that re-sparked my interest in playing guitar was a tutorial uploaded by Spacey Jane on their song good grief (thanks Caleb). I’m a bit of a fan and the song is such a banger. After watching the video I wiped off the dust that was on my guitar and started playing. When I start to play again I’m reminded of how much I enjoy it. I’m still learning and relearning. It’s not easy but it’s exciting picking up the guitar again – the fresh calluses and the feeling of nailing a hard riff after a lot of practice.
I don’t know how long this will last – the excitement – but I hope it sticks around long enough for me to feel a bit happier than I did yesterday. I think I’m going to ride the wave for as long as I can.
clara x 2020