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Post new topic POLL/Competence with or without a Teacher?
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Author Topic:  POLL/Competence with or without a Teacher?
John O Keeffe


From:
Co Waterford Ireland
Post  Posted 1 Jul 2001 4:10 am    
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Maybe this has been covered before I don't know.


I don't have a teacher myself apart from some video instruction and some books and I think I am doing pretty OK with this method.
On the other hand in the back of my mind I have no doubt that I would advance a lot better if I had someone to give me regular lessons.Unfortunately there is no-one in my area.

However I think it would be interesting to hear peoples comments on how they became competent players.

Did you learn licks and songs by ear?

Did you just stumble on to different things through lots of practice?

If you had a Teacher..What did he show you that you may not have learned through hard work and practice?

How many of you on to become teachers even though you didn't have someone to instruct you when you were learning?

Thanks in advance.........JOHN
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Joe Smith


From:
Charlotte, NC, USA
Post  Posted 1 Jul 2001 5:49 am    
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Hi John,
Well I started playing lap steel when I was around 12 years old. There was this old man who lived down the street, had to be at least 25 years old He showed me some tunings and got me started. I kinda learned on my own after that, and never got very good untill I met Big Ben Keith.This was around 1962. He showed me more in 6 hours than I learned in 6 years. That was what really got me on the right track to learning how to play. There wasn't any video tapes back then. If you use the vidio tapes and could get with a more experence player even for a couple of lessions, it will make a big difference.
One last thing. I am now 64 years old and I am still learning. The day that you quit learning is when they put you 6 feet under.


------------------
Playing PSG keeps you on your toes.

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Steel tryin


From:
Macon, Ga.
Post  Posted 1 Jul 2001 6:32 am    
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I think it's clear that certain
things can only be learned from a
GOOD teacher. Unfortunately not
everyone can teach nor are the GOOD
teachers widely available. I think
in your case as mine TAPING yourself
playing is the next best thing. Much
of what a teacher can give you is from listening. You can be a teacher of sort
if you have the courage to listen to yourself.
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Jack Stoner


From:
Inverness, Fl
Post  Posted 1 Jul 2001 6:58 am    
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Obviously a "live" teacher would be better. But, there is a lot of instruction material available today and with some effort you can be well on your way with the pedal steel.

Think about this. Who taught the "pioneers" in this instrument, when it was new and there wasn't any pedal steel guitar teachers or even any instructional material.
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Janice Brooks


From:
Pleasant Gap Pa
Post  Posted 1 Jul 2001 7:24 am    
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I don't have access to a teacher here. The Newman vidios are decent but they don't help you if your not sure about setups etc.
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Donny Hinson


From:
Glen Burnie, Md. U.S.A.
Post  Posted 2 Jul 2001 5:34 pm    
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Well John...good to see you here! Like everything else, having a teacher has an up-side...and a down-side. The up-side is you learn a lot faster, and a teacher can spot and correct bad habits (if there are such things) early-on. The down side is...you might end up playing just like your teacher. By this I mean that it kind of "stifles" personal creativity, and personal discovery when you get all your guidance from one person.

If you can find a teacher, then use him. And if you can find five, then use them all for a short period rather than sticking to the same one for years. You'll learn more...and they will, too!
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Bob Allen


From:
Apache Jct, AZ, USA
Post  Posted 2 Jul 2001 7:17 pm    
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John I started playing the Steel when i was 17 yrs old and when I started playing no one wanted to give another player any of what thay new. I had one player ask me not to stand over him while he was playing. But that was years ago. we didn't have any teaching methods like now. I learned most of my playing from records. Then in 1961 I bought my first PSG and learned to make the transition. It was like learning all over again. I guess what I,m trying to say is theirsall kinds of learning tools out there go for it. and the best of luck.I wish I had some of the learning videos and tapes and Jams, and Conventions back when I was learning. Bob.


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Gene Jones


From:
Oklahoma City, OK USA, (deceased)
Post  Posted 3 Jul 2001 3:24 am    
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What Bob says above is true....and I might add that when they left the bandstand many of them would "detune" two or three strings so someone couldn't run their finger across them to find out how it was tuned. That was the evolutionary period and if a steel player came up with any kind of a unique sound, it was guarded very carefully. www.genejones.com
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Roger Edgington


From:
San Antonio, Texas USA
Post  Posted 4 Jul 2001 2:53 pm    
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John I was lucky.My mom and dad taught Hawaiian in the 40s and still had lessons from then. I started at age 10 on a lap steel and bought a Fender 400 at age 14(1960). Played it over a year before we even knew how to tune it. Finally took lessons from Tom Kiley in Cols. Ohio. Tom set me up in D9th and straightened me out. There was no modern tab in those days. I spent many hours listening closely to records at a slower speed to figure out what they were doing. At least it was still 8 string and no knee levers yet. Now I'm a 55 year old weekend warrior, but still learning and enjoying PSG.
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John O Keeffe


From:
Co Waterford Ireland
Post  Posted 6 Jul 2001 10:18 am    
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Thanks everyone for the replies.

Last year in St Louis I went to the Jeff Newman class and learned an awful lot in just a few hours.

I also had time to get a lesson from one of my good friends Ricky Davis in Roundrock Texas.

Well all that was a year ago almost but I have been putting into practice what they showed me and it has helped an awful lot.

I guess at the end of the day a teacher certainly makes things progress faster,its true but sheer determination can help too in a big way!..........
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Pat Burns


From:
Branchville, N.J. USA
Post  Posted 6 Jul 2001 10:42 am    
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..Janice, you're about the same distance/time that I am from Bruce Heffner in Hamburg..I've seen you at Bill Lawrence's in Bethlehem, and this would be about 45 minutes to an hour closer for you..give Bruce a call at 610-562-5595 to set up an appointment, he's a good teacher and he's prepared when you get there, there won't be any wasted time...he has plenty of material ready to go over with you, enough to keep you busy for months...and he'll custom fit you lesson to what you need for a reasonable price.
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Bill Crook


From:
Goodlettsville, TN , Spending my kid's inheritance
Post  Posted 6 Jul 2001 7:40 pm    
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Without a teacher,(Mr.George Edwards,of the Kitty Wells Show) I would have never learned that that you can find any desired note/cord/etc,etc within 2 frets either side of the root fret. With this in mind, one seldom runs out of places to find the next cord procession. Knowing this has keep me from many a train-wreck. Also that you can do any I IV V number without ever moveing the bar. (Of course, this is using a PSG w/3+4)

Thats why you need a teacher. You cain't find out these things by just trying to copy a record/tape.
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John O Keeffe


From:
Co Waterford Ireland
Post  Posted 7 Jul 2001 11:47 am    
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Yes Bill, I can remember when I was trying to learn ordinary guitar I seemed to be going nowhere for a long period of time.

I heard about a jazz guitarist who was a very good teacher so I decided I would give him a try......In a very short space of time I made a gigantic step foward.....He taught me how to play lead and improvise over many chord progressions.......in fact I would still be in a stalemate only for him.

BTW I'm still learning everyday!.........JOHN
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Tony Palmer


From:
Big Pine Key, FL
Post  Posted 11 Jul 2001 5:53 am    
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One-on-one with a teacher enables you to improve what you can never learn from a book or a video....technique!
I've been playing for over 20 years, but recently took a lesson from Mike Cass and learned pointers on technique (from bar control, hand position, cross picking, even vibrato...that I could never learn any other way). I didn't even know I needed to learn what he taught me!
Thanks, Mike....see you next time I'm in Nashville.
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J D Sauser


From:
Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic.
Post  Posted 11 Jul 2001 6:48 am    
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A teacher will or should teach how to practice right. If you practice the wrong stuff or the wrong way, all you'll ever get good at is... well guess what...

... J-D.
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