Friday, July 31, 2015

Book Review: Lead Guitar Harvey Vinson

I'm learning Lead guitar from Harvey Vinson's book.  I came across this book in a used bookstore, and it came with flexible record.  Apparently, this is was how music was shipped in the Analogue age.  The technology involved is quite impressive: you can stamp these flexible records out quite cheaply, they are flexible and light.  And you can play it without electricity, if you have a hand-cranked turntable.

So I was talking about this book with my friends, and one of them offered to transcode the record into a format for the digital age.  Mr. DM took the book from me, and returned me three files containing both sides of the record. Side One has a short tuning prelude, and then a rhythm backing track for standard blues in G.  Side Two has tuning, a triplet blues backing track in G, and a track for turnaround in G.

The choice of G is interesting: I much prefer the key of A.  While you are learning, it doesn't matter.

The book goes through the pentatonic scale, the blues variation, and shows you how to build lead for a standard 12 bar blues song.  With the backing track, you can practice and make your own song.  This format works very well: you are learning something basic, and then the book gives you enough understanding to start making your own music.  To a student, this is the most fulfilling part of learning: creating something new.  Many guitar books start the student out on basic tunes.  For a while this is sufficient, but many students tire out of playing dull tunes.  It is exciting to be able to make your own music, to record it, and share it with friends.  This book gives you enough insight that you can start learning the basic of 12 bar blues, and gives you enough starting points to develop your own solos, and your own riffs.

Here are the audio files, in case you have this obscure book, and are stuck with a record that you cannot play any more.  You can download these files and play them locally as backing tracks while you are using the book.  You can also add the audio track to your existing audio project (Logic Pro or Audacity) and record your lead guitar in a separate track.

Side One
Side Two Triplet Blues in G
Side Two Turnaround in G 

 Courtesy: DM for doing an amazing job at converting the record.