Guitar is for Scrappers

Learning guitar is for scrappers. It’s not for wimps, prima-donnas or quitters. It’s hard to learn. Hard that is, depending on your teacher – I’ll come back to that. It’s a plank of wood with different size wires stretched very tight across it. You have to hold the wires down against the plank of wood and bang on the wires – but you have to bang in the right rhythm. Sometimes you have to hold several wires at once, in different places, with your hand contorted in an un-natural way, and do it till it hurts. Who thought this up? What madman – or genius? It can play melody or harmony or percussion or all three at once – and it’s portable. You can play any style of music on it, sing along with it, write songs with it, experess your soul with it. A friend once said it makes women take their clothes off. I neither confirm nor deny this. But it’s hard. The teacher’s job is to keep you from finding out just how hard it is – ‘cause if you knew you’d say “to heck with this”, and then you’d be missing out – big time. The teacher’s job is to show you how to tame it – just a little at a time – so you don’t get frustrated – so you have fun – so you want to go home and torture yourself with it – til you hear yourself make music from it. Teachers cut up your guitar food into small bites so you don’t choke on it. Teachers will listen to you whine and say “this is not possible” or “I can’t get it to work” or “I’ve tried everything” - they’ll smile and say “you’ve almost got it”. Sometimes they’re lying. Teachers will listen to you go buzz and plunk and boing until you’d think they’re going to go home and shoot themselves but they don’t, they show up the next week ready for more. Teachers are scrappers too.