Bill Roper (billroper) wrote,
Bill Roper

To Everyone Who Helped Me Learn to Play Guitar

Many years ago, my mom and dad took me to the music store in Belleville. There, I picked out a red Gibson Melody Maker guitar and started two years of guitar lessons with Mr. Masloski. I learned a few things, the most useful of which -- other than the general ability to figure out where to put my fingers on the frets! -- was picking up the Chet Atkins style of fingerpicking from his beginners' books on the subject.

After we moved to Guam, my amplifier failed and I ended up putting the guitar down for many years until roughly my junior year of high school when Sam moved in next door. He also played guitar and had a working amplifier. We spent a good amount of time at his place plugged in and playing together very badly. :) But I was playing again.

Not too long after that, we traded in the Gibson on an Epiphone six-string acoustic which (happily!) did not require an amplifier. This gave me many more options for playing and I started picking up music books: Beatles Complete, The Songs of Paul Simon, America Complete, the complete Jim Croce collection. I learned a lot about playing guitar from playing those songs and songs from other collections that I snagged. (It was many years later that I finally realized that the reason that I couldn't make my fingerpicking sound like Jim Croce's was because there were two guitarists. Humph. I learned a lot by trying though. :) )

And I found filking, which taught me more about playing guitar (with thanks to Wulf and Barry) and showed me that I really could write my own music.

Thanks all!
Tags: filk, guitar, home, musings

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