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Heyo, peeps. =3


Scia
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Hallo! :classic_biggrin:  You may call me Scia (SHE-uh), based on my online presence.  (I'm a girl, in case it's not clear.

I do livestreaming, and make some money off of it.  I mostly do video games, though I've done a few singing streams.  So far, I've danced on-stream (a la Just Dance) ONCE (though I'm trying to set things up so I can easily do it more often).

My musical journey has actually been based more in piano and singing than guitar, all things considered.  Growing up, I sang church songs every week, and my mom taught me how to lead music out of the hymnbook (which happens to have instructions right in the back).

When I was little, my parents got my sister and I something called the Miracle Piano Teaching System ("Miracle" apparently being the name of the company).  Basically, you'd attach a MIDI Piano to a computer (we had a half-width one - great for little kid hands =3), and the program/app would both read your inputs off the piano, and play music/other sounds through said piano.  It then had a serious of games and lessons to help you learn piano + sheet music, or even record your own songs.  And when you practiced a song, it would rate your performance - both whether you hit the right notes, and how good your rhythm/timing was.  And honestly, I've yet to see another standalone piece of software that comes close to the same quality.  (No offense, Johnathan.)

That said, the learning curve got a bit too steep for me after a while.  And being the kid I was, I'd keep going until I had trouble, start over, and repeat.  Still, I had a fair amount of practice on a set of easier songs.

Growing up in a household that mostly used Mac computers (until more recently), I had the chance to try GarageBand.  I really do love how easy it makes music composition.  My mom, sister and I would often use it to transcribe songs we were asked to practice (so we could listen to it, despite our not-good-enough piano skills).  I've used it on occasion to write my own stuff.

I've attached a couple of my songs.  "The Butterfly Lullabye" is something I wrote waaay back when... has to be something like 15-18 years ago.  "Judge Not By Appearance" is much more recent: a little over two years old, for a contest for a new hymnbook (where they're STILL going through the entries :classic_rolleyes:).

Someone I've met online tells me I have a good intuition for harmonies.  I actually did find myself humming my own improvised part once, to a song I'd never heard before, long before I'd ever heard of the Guitar Grid.  I'd actually say that my feeling for music - going by the Guitar Player's Roadmap module - is probably at or near the "composer" level.

I mean... I've literally shown that I've written my own songs.  I think that shows something. :classic_laugh:  (I do know that there are different levels of composing skill, though... I'd say mine isn't bad, but I'd still like to get better.)

It's the instruments I struggle the most with.

I've occasionally dabbled in other instruments... mostly toy instruments for kids. XD  So I'd say I technically also have some practice in recorder and ocarina.

I've also known the general idea of how the guitar works for a long time now... just not enough of, say, where the notes are to actually play it.  (Honestly, I have similar troubles with piano and such...)

Actually, my first experience with guitar involved this one guitar a family member gave MY family, because he didn't need it anymore.  The thing is, I've never been that great at upper-body strength (despite my efforts...), and at the time, I struggled to hold a fret long enough to play a single non-open note.  Discouraged, and thinking I'd probably never be able to play if I can't use the frets, I set it down and figured it probably wasn't for me.

(Part of me still wanted to learn, though.)

After a recent singing stream, I ran across an add for the whole Breakthrough Guitar stuff.  I'd seen it before, but this time, I had the impression that I should click on it.  I found that it addressed a lot of the concerned I had with even the idea of learning music theory, and/or taking music lessons.

And then I had the impression that I should pay for the first offer... and the second... skip over the third (literally couldn't afford it), but take the fourth offer.

Then I dusted off my family's old guitar (literally), and gave it another shot.

Apparently, my hand strength has gotten a lot better, because not only could I hold the frets down, but I was pressing them so enthusiastically that note were ringing without me having to strum anything. :classic_laugh:  Unfortunately, I was finding that the full-sized dreadnaught was more than a little unwieldy for me - I'm a small person (5'3"/160 cm) with small girl hands, and not only was the fretboard TOO much of a stretch for me, but I had a hard time getting my arm around the body.  BUT I still was able to try some basic stuff out.

Things got busy for a bit, but after contacting support over the fact that, for some reason, most of my courses were missing from my "Backstage" view, I had the feeling that I should try looking up 3/4-sized guitars on eBay.  I bought a children's 3/4 guitar for $40, and I'm SO glad I did!  It's just the right size for me to require some stretching practice, but not so much that trying to stretch feels impossible (or like it would injure me).

(Besides, I kind of like doing things that are a little out of the ordinary - things that I often think could use a little more attention, or to be seen as a little less "weird" or "wrong" - and playing a children's guitar fits right into that. :classic_biggrin:  An article I read said that smaller people just plain prefer to use smaller guitars sometimes, SO THERE! </silliness>)

Unfortunately, things have STILL been busy, but I've been trying to find opportunities to learn and to practice once in a while.  I've even been meaning to add something to my streams so that viewers can request that I jam a little/improvise to the game music.  (It's not complicated, I just haven't gotten around to it. :classic_unsure:  ...Maybe I'll do it right after this post.)

Things seem to be slowing down now (if only a little), and I recently found myself rushing through a number of lessons (mostly viewing, not much practice... yet).  I know it's not recommended, but it's one part to make up for lost time, one part to skip through what I already know (I already learned what a key is, how it works, and how naming/changing keys works from a book I found lying around called Alfred's Essentials of Music Theory - incidentally, I am SO glad that most of the videos can be played at double speed :classic_laugh:).  I also find that it seems to be more-encouraging to have an idea of what to look forward to in terms of my practice (which I've been taking notes on, just to be safe).

I also sometimes guess what's in farther-ahead lessons before I actually get to them. X3

 

But yeah, along with wanting to learn guitar, I really just want to get better at playing - and especially writing - music.  The thing is, while I can compose using things like GarageBand, I still have to pick out a tune by earMEMORIZE IT (if temporarily), even with musical typing (which is based around a piano).  And then I do a lot of editing and stuff until it sounds right.

In other words, composing is slow-going for me.  Which is... not entirely encouraging.

I figured that learning Breakthrough Guitar could probably help me with my musical skills - particularly composing - in general.  Help me play and write music better, faster.  Heck, I already knew enough about music to realize that a lot of the principles would be applicable, anyhow.  Also, I figured it would be nice to be able to play my own guitar parts when writing/recording music. =3

I'd really like to get a bass guitar at some point.  I find that I enjoy playing the bass parts more than guitar parts on the Guitar Hero/Band Hero games (which, yes, I understand doesn't really help you learn guitar), as well as in the minigames for this game called Night in the Woods.  Besides that, it fits right in to my thing of liking things that are less popular/out of the ordinary.

(I'm only slightly surprised that I haven't seen a SINGLE mention of bass guitar anywhere in the Breakthrough Guitar content.  ...Hey, it only proves my proves my point that it's lesser-known, and could probably use more attention. :classic_laugh:)

Something that's actually got me inspired to REALLY learn how to play - mostly piano, but also in-general - are these videos I've come across of someone (mostly a YouTuber who goes by Pacil) doing recordings of himself playing songs, starting at an easy level, and moving to more-advanced versions of the songs, and throwing other songs in there (medley) while he's at it.  He's the only one I've seen that plays all the music himself - no help from other people to get a third hard, or use of a synthesizer - so it shows that playing this stuff on your own is actually possible.  And they are SO fun to watch!

Here's one such video:

(Pardon his English - it's not his first language.  He appears to be Italian, from what I can tell.)

But yeah, if I could even get HALF that good - like, to the "intermediate" level - on guitar AND/OR piano, that'd be awesome. :classic_laugh:

The "expert" levels is sort of my dream, though. :classic_happy:

(Side note for anyone who's been through the "Single String Scale Pattern" in the Guitar Grid lessons: the piano keys are arranged the same way - in the key of C - with the black keys basically being the "in between" keys/notes.  GO FIGURE! :classic_laugh:

...I dunno why it was decided that "basic" music should be based around the key of C. :classic_wacko:  Sheet music is like that too, for those who don't know.)

 

But yeah, what I'd LIKE to do?  Pretty much what I mentioned: be able to play and write quickly.  Play for friends, family, stream viewers...

Compose more of my own music (or remixes) quickly, semi-regularly... put videos online...

Sell it on Bandcamp... :classic_biggrin:

I would be nice if I could get pretty popular - not "big name" sort of a deal, but enough to have a fair amount of appreciation and community, and make at LEAST a halfway-decent amount of "on the side" money. :classic_happy:

(I'm not a "big spotlight" person.  I guess I wouldn't mind popularity... as long as it's a little more "cozy." :classic_happy:  A little more time to interact with fans and such 1:1, or in smaller groups and such.  And still plenty of personal time. :classic_biggrin:)

...I suppose the occasional "on stage" performance wouldn't be too bad, though.  Assuming I don't need earplugs for my sensitive hearing. :classic_laugh:

 

Aaaand I think that covers everything in the "start here" post.  I could be wrong, but I seem to be one of the few here who's a general music lover, rather than specifically guitar. :classic_laugh:

But hey, like Johnathan and I have both said, the same principles apply across music in general. :classic_biggrin:  Who knows?  Maybe some of my non-guitar insights could help guitarists here.

See you guys around! :classic_smile:

Judge Not By Appearence - doneA - 7_3_19, 4.53 PM.m4a

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