$177 (less than ₹14000)| All courses access for a complete year

Ragacourses PRIME Membership

Queries? Want to know the path/course best for you? shyam@musicianself.com

  • Your investment: $177
  • Access for: one complete year from the time of joining
  • Access to: all courses (see list) on Indian guitar fluency, Chord and Rhythm etc + teacher access & video corrections (associate teacher)

Want to know when lower priced offer exists? Join to get offers and FREE resources

Want 1-1 classes? Get details: shyam@musicianself.com

You are here because:

  • you are interested in playing Indian raga (carnatic) or film songs the way it is sung
  • you want to play Chords and rhythm for your favorite songs fluently and efficiently
  • be able to find notes and chords on your own, fingerstyle and chord melody, maybe even improvisation and composing…

You could be a beginner or been playing for sometime.
You want to make sure that you are on the right path towards playing the exact music you want to play, the way you want to play it.

How you benefit:  $177(less than INR14000) for full year access, ALL courses.

PLUS 4 private video corrections & access to a specialized teacher

Courses Included:

  • Guitar basics that matter
  • Indian guitar first steps and skill growth exercises (updated over the year)
  • Rhythm chord basics to learn smooth transitions
  • Fingerstyle and strumming patterns and exercises (updated over the year)
  • Chord code and How to find chords PDFs (Videos updated over the  year)
  • Sing while rhythm – matching the rhythm and singing – video course
  • Ear training (updated over the year)
  • Carnatic on guitar – scales to ragas, Malahari geetham, Raga mohanam geetham, Raga kalyani geetham. Our intention is to learn the method and process so that you can widen your repertoire over time.
  • PLUS 4 recorded video private corrections and content guidance with a specialized associate teacher under Shyam’s guidance.
    • Free 4 corrections available during the 1st 2 months from joining.
    • OR discuss 1-1 classes with the teacher.
    • After 2 months, decide with the teacher directly if you want to continue for a fees.
    • The teacher is capable to give you all the needed corrections + he is under constant guidance from Shyam. Try working with a dedicated teacher.
Who am I? Hello, My name is Shyam. You have seen my videos on youtube: shyammonk & musicianself where 100s  of detailed free videos and tutorials are given.
I live in Germany, work with composing and other music related work + instruction, teaching methods etc.
I have personally faced difficulties with available teaching methods when I started playing music when I was 11. Therefore I started building frameworks and methods that will help a student move from where they are to where they want to be, instead of generic try to fit all methods. Based on the student and their next 1%, based on errors and deliberate corrections, we move to your goal as fast as possible, while making sure the fundamentals and underlying mechanics are taken care of.
Who does the corrections? Shyam, I have been teaching teachers in our method. I make most of the course videos, the frameworks etc.
One of those associate teachers will be doing corrections for you, under my guidance. They are well trained + constantly getting guidance with me. They are more than capable of doing the corrections, but if they need help with anything they will consult me before doing corrections for you. Personally doing all corrections is beyond scope because of work and life commitments. I do my job, everyone else does their job… you, we, all benefit.
Why this offer? I have spent decades to learn and teach this content this way. I want it to be available for as many as possible instead of behind big pay walls. So the content, course videos are made available at the price of a basic decent beginner guitar. Corrections etc that take the teachers’ time can be used by the student separately for separate fees, since time is a limited resource and music teachers need their fair income. If you have a guitar or plan to buy one, this content bundle should be an addon you will need to make use of the guitar.
  • no more youtube whirlpool,
  • no more adjusting and struggling with generic material that doesn’t cater to Indian style of playing,
  • no more guessing, trial and error, not making progress, ending up overwhelmed and frustrated…
  • no more questioning your talent and abilities (replaced with step by step deliberate practice taking your from where you are to the skills you want to have) 

Instead, strong fundamentals, competencies and skills so that you can play with freedom, without doubting your skills and talent. 

Once  you join, you will get emails with your login, password and access links automatically.
No automatic renewal – you can choose to continue after 1 year if you wish.

You can get more private corrections if you wish, when you want it directly by discussing with the teacher. 

In less than 2 months… This is more progress than i have ever made in the several years of trying to figure things out myself or trying to learn from other resources.” – Sarvesh, San Jose

What Students says about video corrections:

Even though Shyam’s videos itself are detailed enough to learn and play , sometimes you may not identify your mistakes- some fine tunes – some tricks and tips – the  teacher gives after analysing your practice videos. That is extremely useful.

Frustration vs Learning what matters to you

To make sure that you have a successful, long lasting musical journey, learn to play the guitar while learning towards what matters to you.

Often, our talent and ability is questioned(do I have the talent? am I too old?) while the real problem is: 1) lack of correct teaching material for your interests 2) lack of learning and teaching frameworks for our needs 3)teaching source’s lack of knowledge of underlying competencies, methods, techniques etc.

More practice will not make us better at playing even as a beginner. Generic methods will not get you to play Indian style music like it is sung, or rhythm chord like you may have seen in my videos.

Single payment to access all these courses for a full year +teacher for private guidance:
(example courses. We will be adding many more and different content over the months for you to access at no additional charge)
Modular: based on your skill and goals, start from whichever course material as you wish, without restrictions. For specific needs use the teacher corrections.

Example courses. The complete resource set will contain more sections and videos than shown below.

You Get

Complete, 1 year , 24/7 unlimited access to:

  • focused, actionable, Indian guitar and rhythm chord material
  • unlimited access to the available courses – more than enough to start with in any of your interest
  • more content updated over the months – free access at no additional cost
  • not sure what is best for your skill level and specific goals? Just ask a teacher: shyam@musicianself.com

Basics to advanced exercises and topics for every day practice

  • no more youtube whirlpool
  • attested curated focused material
  • have 5 minutes? just sit, practice, knowing you are in the right direction, spending your time well between life and work commitments
  • want to play Indian music? Learn guitar playing towards what you are really interested in instead of generic exercises that make you quit

Guitar basics

  • which guitar? electric, acoustic, combinations
  • how to hold the guitar? What is the best angle and position?
  • plectrum or hand? what is the angle of contact? up and down or other?
  • what to start with? What is sustain and connected playing? Why is it important to play music instead of notes?
  • follow the best practices and be confident about your guitar playing
  • fingering exercises, finger freedom

Indian guitar basics

  •  Progressing from being a note player to Indian style fluency techniques
  • sustained and connected playing techniques
  • basics of slide, hammer on and pull off
  • simple slide exercises
  • simple hammer on exercises
  • simple pull off exercises
  • checklists and best practices on executing the 3 basic indian guitar playing elements successfully
  • what is expected, how to progress further
  • finger level exercises, changes, understanding and corrections
  • usage of thumb and other fingers for repeated efficient slide playing

Rhythm Chord basics

  • smooth transitions using underlying mechanics
  • basic rhythms
  • finger change priority to prevent stuck chord change
  • common finger and finger group movement
  • automation of rhythm hand
  • conscious playing connecting the chord shapes to the root notes
  • pattern based understanding of chords – how you need to practice only 3 chords to generate all the other chords. Don’t waste your time learning different chords when they are all the same pattern.
  • basic chord theory. the patterns on paper

Carnatic basic lessons

  • Major to mayamalavagowla
  • level 01 Sreegananatha
  • Level 02 swara sreegananatha
  • Level 03 Lyrics version
  • Level 04 full Lyrics version with slide
  • Padumanabha, kereyaneeranu, Kundagowra, Varaveena, Kamalajathala, Mahaganapathim.
  • Further learning is better done with a teacher – request when time.

Guitar skill growth & Fluency

  • scales, notes, exercises
  • connecting the notes – exercises
  • slide exercises
    •  2 notes, 3 notes different directions etc
  • pull off exercises
  • hammer on exercises
  • cyclical hammer on pull off exercises
  • combination slide, hammer on, pull off exercises
  • real song phrases practice from simple to advanced 
  • Fingering and other exercises. e.g. tremolo with plectrum, arpeggio exercises – major, minor, major, major 7th, minor 7th etc…
  • raga phrases
  • techniques to remove delay and bring the song together

Rhythm chord exercises, patterns, methods

  • varied rhythm exercises in different timings and patterns. e.g. Detailed Rumba & other fingestyle + pick rhythm exercises
  • obsess on fluency, clarity, accent, regularity using underlying techniques
  • Monk style snare sound rhythm techniques, fret hand accenting
  • automated rhythm hand freedom exercises
  • Chord knowledge. e.g. using 4 note chords instead of basic triads
    • minor 7 instead of minor, major 7th or minor 7th instead of major and minor chords and more

Sing while rhythm

  • skills and subskills
    • why downstroke consistency matters
    • automated rhythm, lyrics entry points
    • dividing the basic to more rhythm patterns
  • syllable matching to downstrokes
  • simple rhythm variations to start syncing words and playing
  • exercises to improve independence
  • exercises to improve sync in different situations
  • what is lyrics offset, continuing rhythm after words, how to start singing before rhythm
  • the usual mistakes and corrections
  • time and rhythm division exercises to understand container rhythm and content phrases

Fingerstyle and Chord Melody exercises

  • thumb and finger freedom and independence exercises
  • fingerstyle movement exercises 10+
  • TIMI RIMI method
  • Rumba
  • piccato
  • speed development exercises
  • rasguado
  • tremolo
  • variations in triplets etc
  • melody playing and then strumming, connecting the melody and rhythm chord
  • understanding melody and bassline relation
  • basic exercises extending chord to melody
  • harmony and melody connection and execution
  • rhythm and chord melody exercises
  • bass movements based on simple chords and fingerpicking
  • melody and bass line changing exercises 15+
  • chord harmony using chord arpeggios – minor, major, minor 7th etc…

Chord knowledge and practice

  • Smart chords – the only three patterns
  • deriving barre chords from open chords
  • 7th and other chords using basic pattern
  • root to chord connection to avoid rote memorization
  • more updates on the topic including various exercises to cover numerous situations

How to find chords on your own

  • Finding chords for most songs using family of chords
  • direct phrase to chord finding by thinking in chords
  • complex raga scales chord finding through numerous examples
  • (vast subject, the content is updated over time)

Ear training exercises

  •  Understanding intervals, interval training with assessments and quiz
  • Get rid of mechanical interval training, instead use real life song situations
  • Graded from 0 to more complex
  • Can also be used to train your singing
  • Separates relative note finding (relevant) from random absolute first note finding
  • Training using relevant phrases, note groups, immediate memory and recall

Progress from just remember and repeat to understanding and higher hierarchies of learning

  • most of music education is remember and repeat
  • that limits your abilities and possibility to be independent and enjoy music learning and playing with the freedom you rightfully deserve
  • using these materials move on to understand the underlying principles, assess and compare music, connect melody and chords, play music with feedback loops to make them sound the way they are meant to beyond just somehow playing

Get 1 year access to all the material for a Single, one time payment of USD 177 (less than ₹14000)

The solution

This offer includes:

  • Course videos, tabs, PDFs
  • video corrections

How it works:

  • you get instant access to core videos and material to grow your skills, methods and techniques (text book videos and material).
    • The moment you join, login and password is created automatically and you are logged in to access the courses included in Fundamentals. You can start learning in the next 5 minutes – no waiting time towards your goals.
  • your competencies and skills are given importance, so that you will be able to learn to play what you wish, the way it is meant to be. Quality of your playing and not just somehow more songs etc (quantity)
    • one year unlimited access to the specizlied material – no hurry. Beginner? Take your time.
  • options available for us to interact – to give you custom corrections and guidance, specific content given to you as recorded video based on your needs etc. 
    • send 4 practice videos, get error oriented corrections, next steps based on your current skill and future goals as part of this course.
    • This is in addition to the existing pre recorded content. You as an individual has unique needs, doubts, problems, growth paths – we will make sure you get them during the course.
    • once you join, write to us with details on your needs. I will give you detailed next steps to take, assess your playing if needed etc. You will be completely ready to go forward.

Know any better source? 🙂

Solid Foundations: Focused Courses

Music learning and its continued success for you, is sensitively dependent on initial conditions. (regardless of butterfly wings, deterministic nature or chaos)

With the right content and effective teaching and learning methods, you will have the right beginning that determines the quality and future of your music playing and learning.

Whatever you do, learn towards playing the exact kind of music you want to play. That will make sure of your motivation, fun, feedback loop for self-correction, interest in deliberate practice to reduce any error gaps.4

Join to get full one year access to all these course topics without limitations:

  • Guitar basics that matter
  • Indian guitar first steps and skill growth exercises (updated over the year)
  • Rhythm chord basics to learn smooth transitions
  • Fingerstyle and strumming patterns and exercises (updated over the year)
  • Chord code and How to find chords PDFs (Videos updated over the  year)
  • Sing while rhythm – matching the rhythm and singing – video course
  • Ear training (updated over the year)
  • Carnatic on guitar – scales to ragas, Malahari geetham, Raga mohanam geetham, Raga kalyani geetham. Our intention is to learn the method and process so that you can widen your repertoire over time.
  • PLUS 4 recorded video corrections and content guidance with a specialized associate teacher (under Shyam’s guidance. Free 4 corrections available during the 1st 2 months from joining.)

Less than 14000 Indian rupees for a complete year access. Direct transfer to an Indian bank account? Email shyam@musicianself.com for the details.

Once you join, you will be automatically logged in and redirected to the courses you have access to. You will also get emails (check spam in case and whitelist me) with the login and password unique to you. Just login and access your courses anytime – 24/7.
Email me at musicianself@gmail.com once you have joined, telling me your main goals, what you like to play finally and if you are a beginner or been playing for sometime. I will send you the custom path you could follow for best long term and short term results.
Not sure if it is right for you? Maybe we are NOT the right fit. Maybe we are the best to your music learning now and in the future. Till we test it, these are just hypotheses. Try it, test it, let us know through email: shyam@musicianself.com – refund is just a button click away. Also, you have a teacher access to make sure that  you get content specific to you – not just static. 

Guarantee

If this doesn’t work for you for some reason, Just let me know within 30 days of buying. You will get full refund.
I mean, the reason I give away free tutorials on youtube, with all details possible is so that you don’t struggle and get stuck.

(Please check the content and use it within 30 days and let me know, since I am unable to give a refund after 30 day period because of payment gateway restrictions. Also, if you use the video correction option or calls, there won’t be a refund since the teacher has spent time, delivering what was promised) 

Is it worth it?

  • would you rather waste time trying to figure out what you should practice, wondering if that is what you should be practising?
  • without a plan from someone who has done it themselves and guided 100s of others, will you be confident on your own to reach your goals?
  • this is not generic guitar instruction – it is directly for your goals in Indian guitar playing or rhythm chord playing. No compromise needed from you.
  • No wastage of time effort and money since you know for sure that whatever time is taken, you are using it to the best with focused deliberate practice methods.
  • My students learn in a few months what I couldn’t do in 3 years as I started. If I had this course when I started, I could build on them without confusion.
  • That is why I am offering this course to you. So that you don’t have to struggle and suffer with confusion instead can gain clarity and focus on what matters. 🙂

Our method

An example of modeling

Model the best game of a very good player.

Let us take a simple open chord change. From A minor to E minor. Traditional methods expect you to keep practising till fluency, without looking at the underlying moves.

In our method, chord learning is about transitions:

  • keeping finger close to string (even when not used)
  • minimal movement (based on common notes)
  • finger unit movement
  • pivot finger
  • the thumb emphasis

… we look at the micro details that actually result in a masterful playing.

(All this and more included in Rhythm Chord basics. If you like details and sure steps, you will love it.)

Teaching/learning success is in the details

I have been playing the guitar for 28+ years now and never met a teacher who taught these methods that can actually make changes in the student. Most blamed talent instead. Imagine a teacher telling us we didn’t have the talent to write with a pencil…

Unique content

You have watched my free youtube video tutorials.
You have watched me play songs and raga on the guitar, my Unusual Unpluggeds with rhythm and chord improvisations.

Tell me, will you get this kind of detailed, unique, learning affirming content from anywhere else?
Remember that it is not just notes that you will remember and repeat.

We are talking about micro steps within the overall moves and lessons.
The details that are usually skipped and left for students to try and err and be frustrated.

How to send video corrections? Just record with your mobile phone or laptop – just make sure I can see the fretboard and can hear the guitar play. Share with the teacher on Whatsapp or email. You can use the Unlisted option of Youtube – only person with a link will be able to watch it. (Youtube is available to you as part of your Gmail. Just go to youtube.com/upload)

The Beginners Ultimate Bundle

First Step – Starting to play from Zero (FREE)

Example topics: 

  • Which guitar 
  • Playing with finger vs plectrum 
  • Parts of the guitar that matters | quick review of basic guitar part names
  • Tuning the guitar
  • How to hold the guitar
    • Elbow, angle of guitar
    • Positioning of hand, plectrum
  • Plectrum or thumb first notes on the first string 
  • Usual problems and solutions
  • PLUS text the teacher for specific needs (included)

Guitar basics that matter

Overview topics: Doesn’t matter how much quantity we play, without these quality checks, basics, our playing may sound mediocre. Go through them, correct them and use them on whatever you play. 

  • best practices to avoid mistake methods and encourage best performance
  • notes, scales, playing techniques
  • sustain and connected playing
  • open and fingered position playing
  • press hit synchrony and other optimizations
  •  introduction to further techniques and methods
  • can play basic songs with confidence, moving towards further fluency
  • smart fretboard

Here are some example topic details:

The Open C major scale Use the correct fingers, up down strokes, positioning etc. 

4 or 5 fret jump tuning relationship Real life applications, finding easier playing positions for notes without knowing the names.

Connection and sustain  playing the notes of a scale or song in a connected and sustained manner. Demonstrate and practice them using the C major scale

Press hit synchrony | better connected playing – student can explain why synchrony matters. How to practice it for better connectedness. The 4 finger exercise Finger practice for ring and little.

Octaves. About Smart fretboard – more tuning relationships overview.

The only 6 notes to remember. 1 3 5 8 order fretboard familiarity | remembering the positions on the 1st and second strings, also learns how to use them as landmark to + or -, sharp or flat the rest.

The C major scale starting on the 3rd string. Applications

Start real songs early |  the student can explain why, can decide on their songs to practice

  • Why. More than same duration notes, matching the durations to the song, avoiding delays, instant feedback and self correction, growing the feedback loop from the beginning
  • How, resources. Tutorials, correction

Skills overview | Up down strokes. C major scale. Open. Other. Connect and sustain. Finger usage, freedom, 4 fingers. Best practice without strain. Using the tuning relationship. Using songs to learn. About carnatic. The swaras arranged – s r1 r2 etc meaning. 

Scale to raga C major scale raga example. Using film songs to learn ragas and scales

Indian guitar first steps

Graduate from playing notes to playing fluent connected music that sounds like your guitar is singing. Use this section to learn the fluency mechanics and technqiues: 

  • the 3 basic elements to start playing Indian music on the guitar fluently without delays, connected and sustained
  • checklists and detailed explanation of what is expected from each move, so that you can check and correct on your own and be confident about your execution of these basic methods
  • observing the best practices of sustain, correct finger thinking, connection between elements
  • exercises and real song examples to emphasize the practice and internalize your learning

Example goals, instruction, paths, exercises:

Slide

  • The sound and movement of a slide | Student can repeat what it means and try to demonstrate on guitar
  • Sustain check of slide | Student can show what it means to have sustain on the origin and destination note. Can compare and demonstrate between a slide without sustain and slide with good sustain
  • Different fingers | student can demonstrate slides of different lengths with different fingers on different strings
  • Q & A:
    • Scratching sound, slides on coiled strings. Alternatives. Relevance to Indian style playing.

HO

  • The sound and movement of a hammer on | Student can repeat what it means and try to demonstrate on guitar
    • 1st string
  • Sustain check of hammer on | Student can show what it means to have sustain on the origin and destination note. Can compare and demonstrate between a hammer on without sustain and with good sustain
  • Different fingers | student can demonstrate hammer ons with different fingers
    • 1st string different fingers
  • 2nd string hammer ons extra mutings | student can demonstrate the right technique, extra mutings as needed etc – Index finger muting etc as needed
  • Different strings | student can demonstrate hammer on different strings with different fingers

PO

  • The sound and movement of a pull off | Student can repeat what it means and try to demonstrate on guitar
    • 1st string
    • Two fingers at the same time
    • Diagonal movement
    • Really pull, wrist movement
  • Sustain check of pull off | Student can show what it means to have sustain on the origin and destination note. Can compare and demonstrate between a pull off without sustain and  with good sustain
  • Different fingers | student can demonstrate pull offs with different fingers
    • 1st string different fingers
  • 2nd string pull offs extra mutings | student can demonstrate the right technique, extra mutings as needed etc
  • Index finger etc as needed
  • Different strings | student can demonstrate pull offs on different strings with different fingers

Real song phrase examples to practice

  • we are practical musicians!

Rhythm chord basics (+ basic chord code)

rhythm chord basics
  • Playing chords well depends on how good your transitions are. We focus on different real life permutations and the efficient fingering mechanics to make sure you transition fluently.
  • What are major and minor chords? What are the spelling of open chords and how they relate to string roots + transitioning
  • Know how to Move from open chords to barre chords – the only 3 forms you need to know instead of rote memorization. 
  • Start to Learn chords the smart way connecting roots to strings, instead of getting stuck in inefficient rote memorization.

The usual questions and answers:

  • What are chords
    • Start with chords or focus on lead? 
    • What all can be done with chords
    • Step by step progress. How we proceed – divisions, stages, steps, chunks
    • 3 chord patterns only
      • Extension examples
    • Finger vs plectrum
  • The chords we use | remember and repeat
    • Basic chord patterns
      • C Dm Em F G Am
    • Many songs can be played using them
      • Sample melodies, links to sample film song tutorials
    • Why they work – family of chords, safe or diatonic chords
    • What is major, what is minor
    • The way to notate. M and m
    • introduction to intervals, 7ths
  • Downstrokes, upstrokes
    • Fluid strokes

Transitions

A google search will give you all the chord diagramns. The important part is, though, to be able to switch between the chords fluently. To do that, you need to observe the common fingers, finger groups, the  position of thumb, preparation of fingers, use the appropriate variation of the chord etc. This section teaches you that

  • Underlying mechanics, optimization introduction
    • Common fingers
    • Finger groups
    • Close to fretboard
    • Function of the thumb
    • Priority of string while changing
      • Especially fingerstyle
  • e.g. C major to A minor and back
    • The notes of the chords. We use it later to connect to melody, finding chords etc.
    • Common fingers, thumb, palm fretboard position, preparation 
    • Which strings can be struck?
  • e.g. Am to Em
    • Fingergroup
    • Minimal movement
    • Thumb
    • Where are we looking
    • Which strings can be struck?
  • More basic chord transition mechanics

Smart chords Overview Why only three patterns and not database approach

  • Open chord to barre chord examples
    • Why only three chord patterns and how to move
    • Free up index and practice the open chords
  • More exercises in Prime Rhythm Chord Mastery

More examples and samples:

Indian Guitar Skill Growth

This section continues from basic fingering, playing ability through numerous real life relevant exercises, theory, understanding, simplication and advancement, practice.

Want to play Indian guitar fluently and efficiently? Go through the material in this section. Understand the concepts while you  play the exercises.

Notes become swaras, scales become ragas. Connected and sustained playing. Make music while practising.

Remember and repeat is just the beginning. Get the underlying mechanics right.

Overview of best practices | Fretboard angle, wrist, shoulder, palm and fretboard, finger close to fretboard

FRAMEWORK | Overview of phases and parts of playing Indian guitar

  • Notes and scales | can explaining how to identify notes from songs. Repeat how scales and notes are connected. How scales and songs are connected. How slides etc are added to notes to make fluent indian guitar playing
  • Connectedness and sustain | student can repeat the three moves needed for fluency. Can explain and demonstrate what connected playing means at note level, note and slur mix. Can explain note sustain, can demonstrate the same. 
  • Delay between notes, Fingering, phrasing | can explain what delay between phrases and notes means, how fingering and phrasing can help remove delays to improve fluency and efficiency. Can demonstrate usage of fingers by preplanning, using all four fingers if needed etc

Notes and Scales Understanding of collecting notes to play, scale arrangements, the 3 scale forms you need to know, how to use them smart to play any scale in any pitch etc.

Fingering and phrasing exercises

 

Multiple sets of fingering exercises will be made available for the student.

Arpeggios, finger independence, hit-press synchrony, raga based exercises, raga scale based entry exercises, slide connection exercises.

Major scales review | using the major scale to demonstrate and practice elements of efficiency, sustain and connectedness

  • Open to non open variations
    • Play 4 patterns of the c major scale including double octave
    • Knows clearly the notes of the c major scale and what octave means
  • Correct notes, up and down strokes, sustained notes | student can play the right notes, with connectedness and sustain, with up and down strokes. Why. How.
    • Connectedness, sustain, up down strokes, right fingers, right notes. 
  • Finger usage wide. Anticipation on returning the octave
  • C major to raga example

Scales for slide practice

  • Sustained slides checking
  • Note and slides together checking sustain
  • Multiple note and slides in c major scale for practice

Tuning relationships | The student can repeat the tuning relationship between strings. Can demonstrate the use by showing the same note on different strings, can explain the use in real life guitar playing situations. What, how. Why useful to find other notes without rote memorization.

Connection and sustain using scales playing the notes of a scale or song in a connected and sustained manner.

  • explain the importance of striking and pressing at the same time to get a ringing sustaining note
  • explain the importance of sustaining the current note till the next is pressed and played, without muted delay. 

Press hit synchrony | better connected playing – more examples

Start real songs early |  the student can explain why, can decide on their songs to practice

  • Using songs as tool for practice
  • Identifying problem points and using them as quick practice instead of practicing full song each time or starting from the beginning. 5 minute practice session using problem points
  • Problem recognition in terms of correct notes, fingering, best practices positions, delay, sustain, connectedness, striking

Song – scale connection. Underlying theory. Playing simple songs with the scale. Song suggestions, simplified variations of popular songs (based on availability. Tabs and tut can be made based on request to the teacher for a fee)

  • Connecting scales and songs for more precision and understanding of music

Scales starting on the 3rd string | Student can demonstrate the position of notes, correct usage of fingers, articulate expected sustain and connectedness outcome. Connecting scales to raga

  • Scope, long term
    • Scales to raga connection. How indian style playing and chord finding depends on scales, note positions, connection by slide etc. 
  • Octaves 

Body and positioning | Further refinement the student can remember and repeat the best practices, can demonstrate practice towards these best practices

  • Angle of fretboard, elbow placement (acoustic), electric balanced
  • Gripping the fretboard vs thumb and palm gap for efficiency and reach 
  • opposable thumb vs guitar moving from other muscles
  • Head tilt, fretboard view, sitting better
  • Strike hand callibration between strings, without looking
  • Shoulder tension, body relax, breathe
  • not moving the thumb and other Indian style specific efficiency practices

Scale and skill exercises

The wide scales 3rd string | student can demonstrate the position, best practice usage of fingers on a wider 5 fret span.

  • Why – horizontal movement comfort. With intention, it is mastered faster.
  • Usage of three different fingers – including the little.
  • How on each string, as you move from the 2nd to the next finger, the 1st finger can be removed to get the wide access
    • Position, wrist, strain, health.

Similar usage in Indian raga style exercises.

Indian style

PO + HO 

  • 1st string PO + HO | student can execute with sustain, clearly repeat required moves, best practices, outcome
    • hit on 7th fret, pull off to 5, hammer on on the 7th. Index and ring fingers 
    • Do the move once
    • Twice or more
  • 2nd string combination | do previous exercise on the 2nd string
    • Muting with index finger, plectrum etc

HO + PO

  • 1st string HO + PO | student can execute with sustain, clearly repeat required moves, best practices, outcome
    • hit on 5th fret, hammer on to 7, pull off to the 5th. Index and ring fingers 
    • Do the move once
    • Twice or more
  • 2nd string combination – do previous exercise on the 2nd string | student learns the extra complexities, can articulate and demonstrate the necessary skill
    • Muting with index finger, plectrum etc

PO HO Mix exercises | the important elements of Indian style playing, executed with balance, ongoing practice. Student can repeat the best practices and best outcome of the moves and playing, can demonstrate it

  • HO PO HO with index and ring on the 1st string
    • Once
    • Cycle
    • Relevance of the exercise ongoing balance
  • The above exercise repeated on the 2nd string | student learns the extra complexities, can articulate and demonstrate the necessary skill
    • Muting for low accidental noises
  • HOPOHO using different fingers | the student can demonstrate skill with different fingers
    • Why – freedom of skill, in real life, removing delays while playing, more options, more fluency, more mindspace to dedicate on higher required tasks
    • Index and middle
    • Index and little
    • Middle and ring
    • Middle and little
    • Other combinations as student deems appropriate
    • The importance of this exercise as ongoing practice – balance
  • 1st string end on 2nd string hammer on exercise |
    • Different finger hammer on pull offs on the 1st string, end on 2nd string with a hammer on sustaining the note

 Slide + HO | Student can execute combination move with sustain of the individual components and connection between the components

  • (ascending) 1st string hit on 5th fret, index finger, slide to 8, hammer on to 10 with the ring finger (part of alaipayuthe etc. mention real world relevance)
  •  
  • (ascending) 2nd string hit on 3rd fret, index finger, slide to 6, hammer on to 8 with the ring finger
  • (ascending) 1st string, 3/7h8
  •  
  • (descend + ascend, index and middle fingers) 1st string 8\7h8, (part of S N move when C is Sa)
  • (descend + ascend, index and middle fingers) 2nd string 6\5h6, (part of m g move when C is Sa)
  • (descend + ascend, index and ring fingers) 2nd string 5\3h5
  • more exercises in Indian guitar skill growth section OR combine Indian guitar first steps and skill growth as single Indian guitar stream

HO + Slide | Student can execute combination move with sustain of the individual components and connection between the components

  • 1st string hit on 8th fret, hammer on to 10, slide till 13
    • Where to look at, while executing these moves. Keep 13 on periphery to not overshoot. Practice hammer on enough so that once you start it, already you can look at 13 to end the slide correctly
  • 2nd string hit on 6, hammer on to 8, slide till 11
    • Not overshooting, practicing hammer on enough to look at end of slide 
  • (ascend + descend, index and middle fingers) 1st string 7h8\5
  • (ascend + descend, index and middle fingers) 1st string 7h8\3
  • (ascend + descend, index and ring fingers) 1st string 5h7\5
  • (ascend + descend, index and ring fingers) 1st string 5h7\3
  • (ascend + descend, index and middle fingers) 2nd string 7h8\5
  • (ascend + descend, index and middle fingers) 2nd string 7h8\3
  • (ascend + descend, index and ring fingers) 2nd string 3h5\3
  • (ascend + descend, index and ring fingers) 2nd string 3h5\1
  • (extra) 2nd string 3h5/0 
    • The limit tends to 0 move, slide and lift off to sound the open string

Slide + PO

  • Why – control, precision, pro vs amateur, fluency, delay reduction, efficiency
  • (ascend + descend)1st string ring finger slide, pull off to middle or slide with middle pull off to index 5/8p7
  • (ascend + descend) 1st string ring slide, pull off to index. 3/7p5
  • (ascend + descend) 2nd string ring finger slide, pull off to middle or slide with middle, pull off to index 3/6p5
  • (ascend + descend) 2nd string ring slide, pull off to index. 3/5p3
  • (ascend + descend) 2nd string ring slide, pull off to index. 1/5p3
  • (descend) 1st string middle finger slide, pull off to index 10\8p7
    • Both fingers placement before the PO. practice separately till second nature
  • (descend) 1st string ring finger slide, pull off to index 8\5p3
  • Repeat the descends on the 2nd string
  • Till 2nd string 5\3h5 using index and middle fingers covered in basics. review?
  • (descend + ascend, index and little fingers) 1st string 8\5h8
  • (descend + ascend, index and little fingers) 2nd string 8\5h8
    • Extra muting considerations
  • (double slide + hammer on, index and ring finger) 1st string 3\1/3h5
  • (double slide + hammer on, index and little finger) 2nd string 5\3/5h8
  • (double slide + hammer on, index and middle finger) 2nd string 5\3/5h6
  • (double slide+ hammer on, index and little fingers) 1st string 5\3/5h8
  • (double slide+ hammer on, index and middle fingers) 1st string, 3/8\7h8

PO + Slide

  • 10p8\7 with hit
  • 1st string ring pull off to index, slide. 7p5\3
  • 1st string little finger pull off to index, slide 8p5\3
  • Repeat on the 2nd string, with mute protection

More scales and ragas

  • major scale based ragas – hamsadhwani, mohanam, real life song combinations
  • minor scale based raga variations, applications, exercise
  • b9 and other variations exercises
  • lydian mode variations
  • nattai based exercises
  • various other – updated as made
About Smart fretboard – more tuning relationships. Towards left, towards right. Overview. Full application in chord section. 
  • Derive scales from the major scale
    • Examples
  • Understand the only 3 scale patterns needed
    • Apply the patterns using examples
  • Change scales using the 3 patterns
    • Apply different scales using the patterns
  • Scales to ragas examples
    • Understand scale to raga using slides
    • Apply scale to raga using slides

Practical Indian Guitar Player

In reality, we have to go beyond notes and make adjustments based on the feedback loop between how we are playing and how it is meant to sound.

Speed of slide

  • Song in mind to slide on fretboard
    • Differences in speed three kind of slide speeds
    • Song example with difference in speed
      • marugelara
    • Connected and sustain in the same

Hammer on pull off considerations

  • Where to use ho po instead of slide
  • Example exercises, Sustain etc
  • C major scale with ho po
  • more exercises

Reducing details to match skill speed

Based on your current skill,  you will need to increase or reduce details, change phrasing to be able to play and perform the song. Iteratively you learn by adding more details.
  • Examples of complexity and reducing them, why

LambodaraContinuous ho po garlands Exercises

Using songs to further improve playing

  • Alphabet to word level analogy for phrase fluency
  • Example with slides
  • Alai kind of slides
  • ‘Seeing’ the slide pattern and practising away from instrument
  • Fingering examples and considerations
  • Raga phrase examples for understanding and applying

Carnatic

Learn the geethams acknowledging the established operating system of the standard tuned guitar while adding the specificities of carnatic.

While learning one song you will learn beyond remember and repeat, the underlying methods so that you will be able to extend your learning to play other geethams and carnatic songs too:

  • Nomenclature. 
  • Method. 
  • Scale, scale change, raga, swara version, lyrics version. 
  • C major scale to C mayamalavagowla scale. 
  • C mmg scale to raga. 
  • Going through swaras without slides.
  • Arohana avarohana rules review
  • Deciding if aro or avaro for each swara of the song
  • Adding slides to the swaras
  • Correct note, connectedness and sustain
  • Fingering, strokes etc
  • Multiple note positions for the same notes

Lambodara and Other malahari geethams. Mohanam Geetham. Kamalajathala. Mahaganapathim. Alaipayuthe.

Rhythm Chord Mastery

 
  • Different chords, unified theory – using intervals, note patterns, on the fretboard
    • Step by step progress. How we proceed – divisions, stages, steps, chunks
    • 3 chord patterns only
      • Extension examples
    • Finger vs plectrum
  • The chords I use in songs
    • Real song examples
  • Chord patterns
      • family of chords, safe or diatonic chords
  • Downstrokes, upstrokes
    • Fluid strokes like painting
      • Not elbow
      • the bell ringing
    • Holding the plectrum
    • Playing with fingers

Transitions

  • More Underlying mechanics, optimization introduction
    • Common fingers
    • Finger groups
    • Close to fretboard
    • Function of the thumb Special during barre chords
    • Priority of string while changing
  • Transitions between minor, major 7th, dominant 7th, sus4th and other chords
  • Down up painting moves
    • Touch on treble and bass, accenting
    • 123 123 12
    • Dudu-udu pattern
  • Verifying the theory using the chords we learnt
    • Major minor augmented diminished 7th major 7th

Open to barre chord using smart patterns

  • The A major minor pattern shifts and additions
  • The E major minor pattern shifts and additions
  • The C or D major pattern shifts additions
The Complete Chord code

Usage of 4 note and other chord from simple chords.
The only 3 chord patterns used to find any other as we play the chords, even on the fly.

Smart chords intervals, patterns

  • Why only three patterns and not database approach
  • Open chord to barre chord
    • Why only three chord patterns and how to move
    • Free up index and practice the open chords
    • Open to barre – Em example
    • Open to barre- A minor example
    • Open to barre – C major example
  • Using the patterns to find different chords like 7ths, 9ths, minor 7 flat th etc, just by knowing the interval and naming them
    • this is a detailed section, explaining which will make this page too long

Rhythm fluency

Numerous exercises

  • Dudu-udu exercise
  • With counting
  • Chord hand muting
    • 123 123 12
    • 123 123 1234 123 123
  • Paint movement
  • Treble bass division
  • More barre chord optimizations
  • Rumba and more

Finger and plectrum rhythm exercises

 

Sing + chords

Note: Exercises shown are representative. There maybe more exercises in the real content. 

Prerequisite – rhythm chord basics, overview of initial offset, vocals before downstroke, strokes | student already knows how to play down up strokes continuously. Variations if any (dudu-udu, muting with chord hand etc, can play at least open chords)

  • Demonstrate up down stroke ability to a metronome. 80% perfection
  • Ability to play at least 4 open position chords

Syllable counting | Student can count syllables in words, can repeat why this is important

  • Teach: songs are made up of syllables. Playing rhythm and chords requires automatic movement of the rhythm + entering the syllables at the right points
  • Soft sounds
  • Examples of words and syllable count

Assessment: example words, student needs to count the syllables

Syllable extension with vowels | student can repeat the concept of extended vowels, can repeat longer vowels while counting with finger. NOTE: SRGM can be substituted with Any sound.

  1. S- R- G- M-
  2. S– R– G– M– P- P-  (Alternative. Sing using C D E F G)
  3. S– R— G– M— P- (123 1234 123 1234 12)
  4. S—- R—- G— M- (12345 12345 1234 12)
  5. S– R– G— M– P– (123 123 1234 123 123)

Make clear the addition gives 8, 16 etc. sub division add up

Usage of metronome

Singing eeee aaaa etc accented vowels to count the rhythm in real life songs. 

Strokes absorbed to vowels | end of lesson, student can explain what is meant by absorbing strokes to vowels. Can demonstrate with direct rhythm 4 – 4 example. Can demonstrate with 3 3 3 3 2 2 on 4/4 rhythm. Using 1 and 2 exercises from above

  • (remember and repeat) guitar plays dudu. Singing S R G M, each for dudud duration
  • Guitar plays dudu, sing S– R– G– M– P-P- total 4 dudu, divided as dud udu dud udu du du

Down up plus syllable continued | student can demonstrate the long vowel exercises in different sub divisions

Practice 3,4,5 from above with upstrokes

Show how practice without instrument

Syllable skip exercise while counting | student can count and repeat the exercise while doing strokes. Student can repeat the problem and solution of vocal not starting on downstroke. 

  • 1123 1234
  • -srg srgm while counting with finger
  • -srg -srg while counting with finger

Syllable skip exercise while strokes on guitar | student can do down up strokes on the guitar while doing previous exercise

  • 1123 1234 with strokes
  • -123 1234 with strokes
  • -srg srgm with strokes 
  • -srg -srg with strokes

Vocal start before downbeat counting exercises| Student can repeat the problem point of vocal starting before the rhythm start, demonstrate with counting

  • Explain problem, what outcome we desire
  • Srgm -srg while counting
  • Srgm –sr while counting
  • Sr– sr– while counting
  • Sr– –sr while counting

Vocal start before downstroke on guitar | Student can repeat the above exercise while doing guitar strokes

  • Explain problem, what outcome we desire
  • Srgm -srg while counting
  • Srgm –sr while counting
  • Sr– sr– while counting
  • Sr– –sr while counting

Silence or vowel at end of line while counting | Student can repeat the problem point and demonstrate while counting

  • Srgm sr– srgm sr– (repeat as needed for practice)
  • S– r– g- srgm p— S– r– g- Srgm p— (repeat as needed for practice)

Silence or vowel at end of line + guitar strokes | Student can demonstrate the above exercise while guitar strokes

  • Srgm sr– srgm sr– (repeat as needed for practice)
  • S– r– g- srgm p— S– r– g- Srgm p— (repeat as needed for practice)

Vowel or silence at end of line + offset start while counting | Student can explain why and what + demonstrate the execution of silence at end of line and offset start

  • S– r– g- –sr gmp- (repeat continuously total 4 units)
  • –sr gmp- (repeat continuously total 4 units)
  • — sr gm– (repeat continuously total 4 units)
  • Srgm p— –sr gm– (repeat continuously total 4 units)

(correctness of vocal pitch is not important to our outcome – rhythm syllable connection is)

Vowel or silence at end of line + offset start while guitar stroke | Student can repeat the above exercise with guitar, demonstrate the execution of silence at end of line and offset start while playing the guitar

  • Dudu-udu with number counting
  • Dudu-udu with syllable and syllable skip
  • Combined exercises
  • More rhythms 
  • How to continue with your own rhythm preferences observing the basic rules of sync

Fingerstyle and chord melody

 Your goal
  • What do we mean by chord melody
  • Why learn fingerstyle
  • Plectrum vs finger uses
  • Film songs chord melody examples

Basics: fingerstyle pattern exercises

  • Use one pattern. Why
  • Little bit of nail
  • Which string finger
  • Basic familiarity
  • Timi rimi
  • C , Am timi rimi
  • If tim rimi too much, try timi only. Try rimi only. 
  • 6/8 and 7/8

Example exercise: Plucking multiple strings same time C E D E exercise with C major, without bass string. C E DE with Am without bass string and more with real life song phrases.

Bass and melody change exercises

  • The Chord, melody group, Chord melody group structure
  • Exercises for chord melody group practice
  • Usual problems, solutions
Note: Throuh the year, you will have 100+ fingerstyle and chord melody exercises relating to real life Indian songs.

Chord melody derivation:

  • Finding the melody
  • Changing melody to open positions 
  • Checking if playable
  • Else change pitch. how
  • Finding chords by note
  • Finding chords by pattern
  • Checking playability

Ear training

  • C D, C D E, CDE B etc real song phrases used to develop your note finding ability. Interval based training softwares produce inferior results since not based on real life. Instead we separate relative and absolute note finding, use real phrases that matter to us, starting from 0 to more complex. 
  • Trial and error with help, feedback
    • First note blank, remaining relative
    • Helpful exercises
    • Direct connection listening to string length, not swara etc
    • Simple interval guessing exercise
      • C d e, c d Eb
  • Guessing scale exercise
    • Changing note and trying other scales
  • Song you know
    • Change to another pitch on same string
    • Another string altogether
      • Guessing and correcting by ear while not too much overwhlem like starting a new song from scratch
  • Using teacher feedback to improve faster
    • Again, note recognition and direct guitar are two different things. 

Finding chords on your own

Learn to find chord instead of depending on chord sheets.
Note: The basic pdfs and videos are included in PRIME. The full fledged course, being PRO level, Will be available as extra to join when released.
  • Chords as patterns per phrase – method and goal
  • Chords per phrase instead of progressions
  • Basics
    • Family of chords
    • Triads
  • Phrase to chords
    • 2 3 chord patterns
    • Two notes, any number of chords
      • examples
  • Phrases and chords examples – exists in real songs
    • Why – learn how to think using examples
  • Chords for mayamalavagowla
  • Chords for … many more ragas