Simply Music for Guitar
Heidi M., Canada
I recently met a local guitar instructor who is considering becoming a SM teacher but also apply the SM ideas/tools as much as possible to guitar. To what extent have any of you been able to do this with guitar? Obviously many principles like CTE and learning one process at a time, can be applied to any instrument, but since there are 6 strings , the PB patterns would definitely have to be adjusted since we are dealing not with a keyboard layout. Anything can be done with enough creativity and imagination, but just wondering if any of you have done this, and to what extent…. TIA 😊
Mark M., New York
Occasionally I seem to recall discussions among the teacher body where it’s mentioned that guitar lessons are not always but often somewhat SM-like already. E.g., https://simpedia.info/patterns-playing-instruments/ — Many guitar lessons seem not to do reading early or at all, and the nature of the fretboard is such that there are not nearly as obvious patterns as five-steps-of-sound, all white-keys for any scale, every-other-note for a triad, etc. It seems to add up to, inevitably, much is learning by doing in opportunistic ways that are inherently playing-based.
Obviously one can then bring deeper strategies like CTE, Advance the Fragments, etc. One could divide hands into Single Thought Processes before doing them together. I’ve no idea whether any such details already happen with some guitar teachers.
Tangentially, I’ve always observed that even most other instruments that rely heavily on notation involve playing one note at a time — like almost every single instrument in an orchestra or symphony. With that, it’s not as crucial to go playing-based before reading, because it’s much easier to read-and-play at the same time not only from the start but all the way through one’s experience. That doesn’t mean those instruments couldn’t also benefit from playing-before-reading, and certainly CTE/ATF/STP/etc. strategies can also provide benefit.
Even so, it seems like piano (and perhaps a few other polyphonic instruments, mostly keyboard-based like accordions and mallet percussion) may be somewhat uniquely in “need” of a playing-based approach — that the gap between PB and reading-based for piano may be far larger than it is for many/most other instruments.
Robin T., Australia
Yep MM is correct. As reading is often not covered, guitar is traditionally already taught in an SMP way. Except if you are a classical guitar teacher as I was for many years.
Johnny R., Texas
There’s a few programs out there now that I’ve looked into as I taught guitar for a few years. One of them I really liked which was breakthroughguitar.com
Original discussion started September 29, 2021