Disgruntled after two lessons!

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Guitar61Guitar61 Frets: 4
Hi guys , got my first guitar, electric, a couple months ago and making ok progress following YouTube videos. Decided to try lessons. Not sure what I was expecting but I've currently got a stash of printouts on major and minor scales, names of all the notes on 12 different pentatonic scales, on and on. I've watched him go up and down the scales as well as improvising. And listened to lots of tales of things he's done. I reckon I've put pick to strings for 2 or 3 minutes at most in the 3 or so hours we've been together.
Is this normal?
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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 22679
    Based on your description I’d say you need a new teacher.

    "And what would humans be without love?"
    “RARE, said Death.”

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  • I started lessons last September after playing on my own for 1 month and every lesson has had a substantial playing portion. Sometimes time is used to discuss theory etc.but most lessons should be about playing.

    Guitar teachers are like any profession and many people who do it are incompetent or lazy. I would say to change teacher because you are just going to throw good money after bad. 
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  • TeyeplayerTeyeplayer Frets: 942
    Change teacher ASAP. 
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  • TheMarlinTheMarlin Frets: 2124
    Get a new teacher. If you’re paying to watch him play at you, you’re wasting your money. 
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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 22679
    It is true that some teachers use lessons as bit of a paid practice session for themselves.

    What you want is someone who can get you the next step along the path, rather than overload you with stuff that is unachievable for many years.
    I never load students up with too much unless it is a one off 'master class' type lesson for someone who is already good at playing and really good at practicing.

    Where in the UK are you?
    Someone here might know of a teacher they can recommend.

    "And what would humans be without love?"
    “RARE, said Death.”

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  • TheMarlinTheMarlin Frets: 2124
    Where are you based? Someone may be able to recommend a better teacher.  
    My first teacher was excellent, had a few others since, but none were a patch on the first (except for the last one, he was great, just had a slight personality conflict)
      
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  • LuttiSLuttiS Frets: 1778
    I had a similar experience with a teacher.. however, for me i wanted the lessons to be very theory heavy... i can play but i wanted to understand what it was i was playing, so there was less playing and more conceptualising. 

    If you're starting out, i'd probably get a new teacher and find one you're comfortable with.. It will dishearten you staying with this one and you will probably want to give up. Getting a teacher who is fun/inspiring and makes you feel like your making progress is so important at the beginning. 
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  • You don't need lessons. Just keep going with the Youtube video and put in hour after hour. It'll be more rewarding too imho!
    TACOMA NARROWS BRIDGE DISASTER
    Dominus Spiritus Invictus
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  • stonevibestonevibe Frets: 3577
    edited July 26
    I'd actually say just play with other guitarists. You tend to pick up more by playing with other musicians and it helps to see how they put things together.

    YouTube is great, but you can't stop and ask why and how etc
    How much does it weigh? & Does it play like butter?

    You can now read my insane guitar ramblings daily here http://www.gearnews.com

    https://www.instagram.com/jefstone/
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  • Guitar61Guitar61 Frets: 4
    Fantastic replies, guys. I really appreciate everyone that has taken the time to respond.
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  • JAYJOJAYJO Frets: 1067
    Guitar61 said:
    Hi guys , got my first guitar, electric, a couple months ago and making ok progress following YouTube videos. Decided to try lessons. Not sure what I was expecting but I've currently got a stash of printouts on major and minor scales, names of all the notes on 12 different pentatonic scales, on and on. I've watched him go up and down the scales as well as improvising. And listened to lots of tales of things he's done. I reckon I've put pick to strings for 2 or 3 minutes at most in the 3 or so hours we've been together.
    Is this normal?
    Piss take. Get a new teacher lifes too short.
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  • Mark1960Mark1960 Frets: 240
    My advice would be to contact your current teacher (out side of lessons), and advise him that you are not happy and tell him exactly what your playing goals are, and ask him to structure his lessons around that. I am not a guitar teacher but have "helped" a couple of people improve their playing, by listening to what they want to learn, and showing them how to best acheive it. For example if you want to play the blues, learning a few blues standards would be a good way to start. Give him one more lesson and see if it improves, if not find somebody else, or as already mentioned above in other posts, if you are self motivated,teach yourself with you tube videos, and play with as many other guitarists as you can. Good luck
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  • Guitar61Guitar61 Frets: 4
    North Manchester
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  • Revolting1Revolting1 Frets: 83
    If your teacher is not listening to what you can do, its impossible for them to assess what you need to be taught for you to improve.
     you are effectively being taught guitar theory rather tha how to actually play guitar.
       So for playing it- get a new teacher
    When logic and proportion
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  • Definitely change teacher - it's mostly an unregulated industry so anyone with a guitar and even a basic set of skills can set themselves up as a teacher - there are also a fair number who are great players but awful teachers anyway! Try and source someone who has at least taken some teaching qualifications. In a lesson scenario a good teacher shouldn't be playing much anyway, the focus should be on your playing with him only performing in order to demonstrate/assist you. He should be able to analyse your playing and describe what you need to do verbally without even playing to you. Everyone learns differently as well and a good teacher will be able to recognise and accommodate which type of learner you are. 
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  • sweepysweepy Frets: 2666
    Try practicing with a mirror on your fretting hand, you’ll be surprised how “off” you can be 
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  • VaiaiVaiai Frets: 459
    The Justin Guitar website and course are excellent for beginners. You need to find a teacher who listens to you and what your aims are. Do you want to strum some chords and hear a recognisable song, or learn scales and theory etc. Good luck - there is a wealth of great stuff online now but a good guitar teacher can help identify areas that need work etc - it is a 2 way relationship tho!
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  • kelpbedskelpbeds Frets: 19
    I'm a guitar teacher and I get this a lot from students who come to me from other teachers. The teacher needs to listen to what the student wants and design lessons appropriately. All mine are bespoke to the needs of the individual. The problem is a lot of guitar teachers aren't teachers - they are guitarists. I spent 20 years as a teacher so I know how to teach. Make s a massive difference. 
    Some teachers just instruct and don't always instruct well at that. I've had to re-explain a lot to students who have been misled.  Teaching is an art. 
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  • BarneyBarney Frets: 405
    I think when learning things have to be kept simple ..as in a few chords and knock a few songs together then start introducing small parts of theory then actually start using it...it sounds as though the guy is reciting the full jazz theory book in the first lesson.....get a better teacher is my advice ..
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  • Jimbro66Jimbro66 Frets: 1348
    edited July 26
    I agree with what has been said above: He’s not the right teacher for you and if you stick with him you will loose enthusiasm and maybe give up, which would be a shame.

    A good teacher should firstly ask you what music you particularly like: Rock? Metal? Pop? Country? Folk? Jazz? Other? He should then bear that in mind in his tuition. His aim should be to give you a good basic musical knowledge and playing technique but also to get you attempting your favourite music, even simplified, as soon as practically possible. That will maintain your interest and hopefully bring a smile or two to your face. Endless scales is not the way to achieve that IMO. Good luck.
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  • LestratcasterLestratcaster Frets: 542
    80% of my lessons are playing and NOT talking! There's a couple of learners who are quite chatty and I have to actually tell them to focus and get on with it.

    Normally I start with some chords and then some strumming so they can at least hold a tune or few in their first few months. Then add in single note melody stuff before the scales. They need something they can relate to before doing any fancy stuff. So if its just strumming some simple 4 chord songs to start off with then that's what it'll be. They will eventually train their ears to hear where chord movements occur, how long they last for and what the rhythm is.

    Also it looks like said teacher just prints off material off the internet expecting you to just learn it like a parrot. A good teacher will be making sure they find the method that brings out your full potential. And not using it as an excuse to show off!!
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  • close2uclose2u Frets: 451
    Guitar61 said:
    ... I've currently got a stash of printouts on major and minor scales, names of all the notes on 12 different pentatonic scales, on and on. 
    That is preposterous.
    Firstly, if you're at a point and ready to learn scales, a good teacher will feed in just one scale (either Major or minor pentatonic) and focus only on one pattern, not lots and lots and lots.
    One scale pattern will take quite some time to explore and learn before one more in introduced.
    But, if you're only been playing a few months, I would not even be looking at any scale just yet.
    You need basic foundations ...
    • clean, crisp chord formations and chord changes of the common open position chords (major and minor),
    • the ability to strum 1 and then 4 down strums in a bar rhythmically and in time,
    • the ability to play a number of songs that contain between, say, 2 and 5 chords,
    • the open string note names and where you can find the notes A, B, C, D, E, F, G up to fret 3,
    • a few simple finger strength / stretch exercises as warm up practice that also help you practice single-string picking,
    • a structured practice routine so your time on the guitar is planned, productive and rewarding.

    You 100% need to change teacher if you want to continue with private 1-to-1 lessons.

    The best online guitar lessons for learning the guitar are right here:
    https://www.justinguitar.com/categories/1-beginner-guitar-course
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  • stonevibestonevibe Frets: 3577
    Might be an idea to put an advert up in the Personal section here and see if you have any players near you that would be willing to meet up for a play.

    I found when I started playing guitar that me and my friends progressed a lot faster when we played together, then went off and practised in our own time in between.

    Sometimes you'll find that another player can help you avoid pitfalls and bad technique. Or just show you a nice new chord or fingering of a chord you already now etc.


    How much does it weigh? & Does it play like butter?

    You can now read my insane guitar ramblings daily here http://www.gearnews.com

    https://www.instagram.com/jefstone/
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  • JMP220478JMP220478 Frets: 188
    stonevibe said:
    Might be an idea to put an advert up in the Personal section here and see if you have any players near you that would be willing to meet up for a play.

    I found when I started playing guitar that me and my friends progressed a lot faster when we played together, then went off and practised in our own time in between.

    Sometimes you'll find that another player can help you avoid pitfalls and bad technique. Or just show you a nice new chord or fingering of a chord you already now etc.


    This  .... playing with other people takes you from a bedroom guitarist to a musician - you'll get loads of support / feedback - verbal and non-verbal - you will learn to listen and your playing  will accelerate .

    Lessons - tutor / online  to suit your preferred learning requirements  - should help your theory / knowledge / technique  .. 

    But time with others is where the magic happens . 

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  • PhiltrePhiltre Frets: 1702
    Don't suppose your teacher was Matt Berry, was it?



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  • Interesting thread.I have been teaching myself from the online stuff via you tube and hit a brick wall.I think I was trying to run before I could walk.People (non musical)expected me to be able to play some songs so I did the you tube tutorials on the songs.Then I really did realise that I have not really built any foundations.I began to question that have I bought the right guitar.Should I have started on an acoustic as I can't seem to get some chords right.Had a couple of weeks off guitar totally and thought.Right go back to basics on justinguitar lessons.Just plod through and practice then when funds allow grab a couple of lessons.Get the basics first.Thats my new approach.The advice above will help me find the right teacher.
    I think I was getting disheartened but hope the new approach will help.
    I really had no knowledge at all or what I should expect to achieve in a few months.I got that totally wrong.
    Unfortunately I dont know anyone who I could play with.
    Hope this is the way forward as I really do want to learn

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  • VibetronicVibetronic Frets: 424
    Yeah, I'd agree with what has already been said. I try and keep my playing in lessons to a minimum, they're not paying to hear me play. A bit to illustrate a point is ok, but otherwise...not really necessary. And the point about asking what they want to play as @Jimbro66 mentioned - that's always the first thing I ask before we even start. Otherwise they're just learning what I think is cool, which is really not the point at all. 
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  • NikcNikc Frets: 302
    edited September 7
    I went into a guitar shop near to me a while back I was killing time while my wife shopping, in their practice room and youngster was having a guitar lesson. This lesson seemed to consist of said youngster watching a grisly old rocker/metal head play over driven scale after over driven scale. I had picked up an acoustic and was having a little play as you do - the shell shocked kid was being picked up at this point I doubt he wanted to go back by the look on his face. Which is such a shame, but one 'teachers' are just arses ;)
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  • You don't need lessons. Just keep going with the Youtube video and put in hour after hour. It'll be more rewarding too imho!
    I'd say that is only partly true.  A good teacher can pick out bad habits in your style and give you guidance on how to improve.  A youtube video will not do that for you.
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  • Luigi_Pati2Luigi_Pati2 Frets: 1
    edited September 7
    Guitar61 said:
    Hi guys , got my first guitar, electric, a couple months ago and making ok progress following YouTube videos. Decided to try lessons. Not sure what I was expecting but I've currently got a stash of printouts on major and minor scales, names of all the notes on 12 different pentatonic scales, on and on. I've watched him go up and down the scales as well as improvising. And listened to lots of tales of things he's done. I reckon I've put pick to strings for 2 or 3 minutes at most in the 3 or so hours we've been together.
    Is this normal?
    Everything is pretty normal, EXCEPT about the 'lots of tales of things he's done'. No, that's not normal. The job of a good teacher is to demonstrate and to explicate, not to ramble on about himself. It's ok to tell a personal story to illustrate a point better, but the job of the teacher is to make sure the student is learning concretely useful things, which should be like powerful tools. A teacher should  do all they can to see a student making tangible progress, so that the teacher can be proud of the student's progress. Don't be afraid to try different teachers. In person or online, it doesn't really matter, finding the right teacher for you is more important. You want to love the learning process, not hate it. These two outcomes will basically decide the fate of YOUR own success as a student. It's really important that you set everything up for the best possible results. Also, for having only started two months ago, the amount of homework you have been assigned seems decidedly overkill, and overwhelming. And this latter thing is also highly influential on how well and how fast you progress. I don't know all the details, and often there's two sides to one story, but I'd say your current teacher isn't the right one for you. I would also recommend to stay away from youtube. You need a method, and random videos are a very bad method. Youtube should never be taken as a method, but only as a place where you get a taste of many different things.  Good luck
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