Category Archives: Practice

Why Your Palm Muting Sucks! [Fix it With One Simple Trick!]

Palm muting can be a tricky beast at first.  Learn the very simple and effective trick I use and teach every day to my students.  Enjoy!

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https://www.patreon.com/mccormickguitar

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3 Guitar Gadgets You MUST Own!

classical-guitar-accessories

 

Heyo rockstars!  Today I wanted to briefly mention 3 things that will dramatically enhance your guitar playing. Think of them as tools in your toolbelt, but instead of fixing the awning, you are MELTING FACESSS!  Okay, haha..  What you need is:

1.  A Tuner

You absolutely MUST own a tuner.  No matter how good are bad you are at guitar, if it’s out of tune, you wont sound good!  Sure some people can tune by ear, but that takes years and practice.  What’s great about today’s technology and it’s abundance of free apps is that you can download one for free on your phone!  I personally, however, prefer a Snark tuner.  I use those for gigs, lessons, and just jamming at home.

2.  A Capo

A capo is, essentially, a clamp for your guitar.  It will raise the pitch of all the notes at the same time.  This will help you to play tougher songs and avoid bar chords in the beginning stages of learning.  It will also help you to adjust the key or pitch of a song to more properly suit your vocal range.  So get one!

3.  A Metronome

A metronome is simply a time keeper.  It is VITAL in learning any instrument.  Keeping a steady tempo is highly underrated and almost always forgotten by “self-learners” on guitar or ukulele.  I personally use the metronome when I’m running through exercises and warm-ups as well as with EVERY student I have.  Also, much like the tuner, you can download a metronome for free on your phone!

 

Okay, that’s it!  Keep rockin!

Drew

714.955.3278

mccormickguitarlessons@gmail.com

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Increasing Finger Dexterity

Hello fellow guitar players!  Just yesterday I had a student ask me for something to help him get his pinky finger more strength for playing guitar.  I had just the thing for him.  Listed below is a simple exercise that will not only workout your pinky finger but ALL of your fingers.  It is a solid dexterity exercise that I still use to this day as a warm-up.

*Requirements:

1.  Must know string names.

2.  Must be able to read tabs.

Before you get started, take a careful look.  Notice the chromatic pattern.  In this very exercise, use your index finger first, then your middle, then ring, and finally the pinky.  After you get all the way through, try running it backwards.  Then, move everything up one fret and start again!  Once you master that, use alternate picking.  If you get smooth with that, time to bust out the metronome and work on increasing your speed.  Have fun!

Guitar exercise #1:

|——————————————————–1-2-3-4—| < — E string
|———————————————1-2-3-4————–| < — B string
|———————————-1-2-3-4————————-| < — G string
|———————–1-2-3-4————————————| < — D string
|————1-2-3-4———————————————–| < — A string
|-1-2-3-4———————————————————-| < — E string

I’d be happy to answer any questions on this tab if you need help!  No charge!

Andrew

McCormickGuitarLessons@gmail.com

714.955.3278

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The Most Ideal Practice Schedule

Hey rockstars!  Happy holidays!

Today I wanted to talk shortly about how often a guitar player should practice.  Most of my clients meet me on a weekly basis (as many of you know).  At the end of each lesson, I make sure they understand exactly what I want them to practice for next week.  The common question is… how much should I practice, Andrew?

Allow me to put your worries to rest.  My first response is..  well, until your fingers hurt so bad you physically can’t play… haha.  jk, but that wouldn’t be a bad idea (think Eddie Van Halen who practiced 12 hours a day).

What I tell students is just  15 minutes a day.

I find that we learn things a lot better if we study in small increments every single day.  Think of it as a balanced diet.  15 minutes a day of whatever skillset you want to learn, be it Guitar, Judo, or Underwater Basket-Weaving.

That’s it.

Hope this helps!

All the best,

Andrew

McCormick Guitar Lessons

714.955.3278

mccormickguitarlessons@gmail.com

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