Hey! Hope you're having a great day. I've never blogged before but I'm looking forward to it. I figured I'd open it up to a Q&A for my first post so here we go!
jhartguitar Q: what is your personal recipe for ‘success’ within the music community? I.e. some people just get lucky, some start with a lot of money, some are just super creative but others like myself have all the skills and work super hard but can’t seem to further my popularity. What would you say to these kinds of people? Cz there’s a lot of them. 🙏🏽🔥
A: Good question! I think this depends on what you definition of success is... For me, success is not at all defined by the amount of followers I have, or how much money is in my savings. For me it's really just about staying true to myself as a musician whilst having as much fun as possible and helping others do the same... If I can live a life like this, then I'd consider myself to be successful. And I've heard your playing, you are successful! I get that this answer might be pretty subjective but I've never saw success as being something that related to one's wealth or popularity. But if you're talking about how to market yourself on social media, that's a whole other topic! I can cover that another time if enough people ask.
- omerekeryilmaz Q: Can you give some information about your music education and school life?
A: Thanks for your question! So I didn't have any special music education when I was younger. I went to a normal school and started playing guitar when I was 11/12 year old. Then I went to college and got a BMus Degree (Music). My degree is through Kingston University in London but I done it on campus in Edinburgh. It was a great experience but if I was to do it again, I'd probably go for the full on Jazz College thing.
- Everyone on Instagram Q: Can I have TABs for this video?
A: Yes! Click here
- ej_swartz Q: What advice do you have for young musicians and songwriters about making it in the industry?
A: Honestly, the best advice I could give you is to really work on finding your own voice. Spend as much time as possible with your instrument, developing your craft and learning about music. Assuming you've already got that down, then just go for it. Get yourself out there: play shows, release music, network, make mistakes but do whatever you can! Nowadays everyone has the same opportunity because of social media. There's no reason why you shouldn't be sharing your music and making friends all over the world. It's one of the most sensible decisions I've made in my career and it's free :-)!
- lewwg_Q: who is Boggy Pete? I’ve heard his name on the streets, apparently he’s a friend of yours.
- mariadoloresmarino Q: As a beginner with electric guitar, what should I start with?
A: I think when you're new to any instrument, the best thing to do is learn some of your favourite tunes! But if you're looking to go down the route of learning applied theory then you gotta learn the major scale. All the info you need to start building chords, other scales, arpeggios etc is contained within that one scale. Learn it all over the fretboard, in all positions and then understand the role of each interval and start building chords, other scales etc based of the intervals... I'm not going to go too into this because it'll become a lesson! But this is a simple place to start and you could spend years working on all the elements that come out of it. Of course rhythm is important too...
- Pookhan Q: Been playing guitar for 15 years, mainly rock and metal. I want to get into jazz; what's the bet starting point?
A: So learning jazz is like learning another language. If you were learning another language for the first time, would you hone in on the small details like grammar or just learn some basic sentences to get you going? I'd say the latter! So what I recommend is spending some time learning your favourite jazz tunes as a means to learning some more vocabulary. Then you can worry about learning scales, chords etc. If you're not sure where to start, check out people like Joe Pass, Charlie Parker and John Coltrane :-). Hope this helps!
- ishwritesmusic Q: What keeps you inspired making music?
A: This is a great question but I'm going to try and not get too deep and philosophical on it! The very fact that music is limitless just excites me; I'll never be finished! And that's totally cool because there's so much I want to work on. But when it comes to "inspiration" and my basic answer to this question doesn't help there are a few things I'll try:
- Listen to music you really, really enjoy. I find myself checking out Pat Metheny when I feel uninspired.
- Learn something new: a new genre, lick, or song.
- Transcribe more. As an improviser, I often feel uninspired when I'm not playing anything new or exciting, so spend some time transcribing your favourite solos and study what it is that you like, then apply that in your own solos or compositions etc.
- This one is really helpful for me when I've been in a rut for a long time. TAKE A BREAK. There is no harm in taking time away from the instrument. Sure, you might need a day or two of shedding to get back into the groove, but nothing helps me more than time away on holiday or just a few days of hanging out with friends. I always come back much more focused and have a better idea of where to go with my playing.
I hope this helps, man!
That's all for today! Sorry if your question wasn't chosen, maybe I'll do it in the next one.
If you have any comments or suggestions for this blog, leave them in the comment section below :-) (I think this works!)