[Share] Learn & Master Guitar with Steve Krenz Complete | 8GB
I was initially apprehensive about whether this course was a scam or not, but having read through positive user opinions on the product by senior members at guitar forums such as Harmony Central, I decided to go ahead and place the order.
After waiting for a week, I finally received the Learn & Master Guitar (LMG for short) guitar course, and all I could say was "WOW!" when I opened the package and examined the contents.
The following is a full review of the L&MG guitar course (which won a 29th Annual Telly Award), with snippets from the content and my own thoughts sprinkled in for good measure.
I've read through many other books on playing the guitar, and while they were really good in teaching the specifics, none of them really came close to giving me a sense of learning from an accomplished guitar player in private sessions.
This guitar program, created by Legacy Learning Systems in association with Steve Krenz promises to lay down a firm training path for aspiring guitarists to follow. You can contact them for more information, read customer testimonials on the course, and discover other training products on offer.
Read Mr. Krenz's bio to get more information on his musical background and published work.
The Welcome Note
The first thing you'll see inside the binder is a welcome note with information on how to use the course, package contents and their purpose and a suggested schedule. Steve also has a word of encouragement for those who think a year is too long to play the guitar competently. Based on the depth of the course, I'd say that 1 year is a realistic time frame for learning to play the guitar pretty well.
The Learn and Master Guitar Lesson Book
The 107-page lesson book serves as a reference for the training sessions. You get one chapter for each session, and each chapter has the relevant music notes, songs, examples and exercises. I also like the quotes that appear at the start of each chapter. Text and diagrams are very clearly printed, but you don't get any color at all in the the content.
Although the main reason for getting the L&MG course is the instruction & practice material found in the DVDs / CDs, the lesson book can be used on its own to refresh on the concepts and theory, and to practice reading music.
Following are some photo samples of a typical chapter.
Start of chapter
Note how it mentions the estimated learning duration (3 weeks) and has a nice inspirational quote.
Sample song chapter
If the topic relates to a jam-along song, a reference to the jam-along CD track is made and the full musical notation for the melody and backing chords is provided. Every song is played at three different speeds on the jam-along CD - slow, medium and fast.
Certain chapters come with a worksheet where you're required to answer questions. The answers to the questions are available online at a special section of the Learn and Master Guitar site.
10 Course DVDs
As mentioned at the official LMG site, these set of DVDs represent the main portion of the course. Each DVD has two sessions in which Steve Krenz presents the lesson and takes you by the hand in grasping the principles.
Video and audio quality is very good. Zooming in on Steve every now and then makes it seem as if he's right there in the room speaking to you. The sessions are broken down into easy-to-understand sections, and Steve throws in liberal amounts of tips and gems along the way so that the lessons are never monotonous.
I'm about to list down every single topic that's found in the course. It was a pleasant surprise that everything mentioned on the Topics and Styles Covered pages of the L&MG website was well and truly taught in the program. I half-expected to be let down as the site promised a lot. Well, I'm just glad that nothing was glossed over in the training ... they've even got Chicken Pickin' covered!
Session 1 - Starting off right
Session 2 - Reading music & notes on the 1st and 2nd strings
- Getting to know the guitar
- How to tune the guitar
- Proper right and left hand techniques
- How to read guitar tablature and chord diagrams
- Learn the C and G7 chords
- Finger and chord exercises. Advice given on recommended amount of practice time.
- How to read music - rhythm, rests, treble clef, time signatures, barlines & measures
- Natural notes on the 1st and 2nd strings up to the third fret
- 1st and 2nd string finger exercises
- Ode To Joy jam-along
- JingleBells jam-along (listen to the sample clip - scroll to the bottom of the page)
Session 3 - Notes on the third and fourth strings
Session 4 - Notes on the fifth and sixth strings
- Reading music - ties, dots, repeat signs, eighth notes
- Natural notes on the 3rd string up to the third fret
- Natural notes on the 4th string up to the third fret
- Finger exercises for eighth notes, third and fourth string notes
- Yankee Doodle jam-along (listen to the sample clip - scroll to the bottom of the page)
- When The Saints Go Marchin' In jam-along
- Love Me Tender jam-along
This is a particularly lengthy session, and typically takes about 2 weeks to finish if you're a complete beginner.
- Natural notes on the 5th string up to the third fret
- Natural notes on the 6th string up to the third fret
- Finger exercises for notes on the 5th and 6th strings
- Recap of notes in the first position, and a C Major Scale example
- Minuet in C jam-along
- Reading music - introducing sharps, flats and natural signs
- The A Minor and E chords, plus finger exercises
- Simple Gifts jam-along
- The Star Spangled Banner jam-along
- Minuet in G jam-along
Session 5 - Basic open chords
Session 6 - Minor seventh and suspended chords
- Learn the C, G, Am, E and Dm chords - chord diagrams and basic strumming pattern / rhythm exercise
- Learn the G, D7, Em and B7 chords - chord diagrams and basic strumming pattern / rhythm exercise
- Learn the D, C7, A, A7 and E7 chords - chord diagrams and basic strumming pattern / rhythm exercise
- Morning Has Broken jam-along
- America The Beautiful jam-along
For me, the highlight of this session is the practice of open chords in the key of C, G and D. It's rare to find guitar books that teach what chords fit into a particular key, and even more rare to find beginner books that include suspended and minor chords in the progressions. Two thumbs up.
- Learn and practice strumming patterns / rhythms with the Am7, Dm7 & Em7 chords
- Music reading - strumming patterns with and without ties
- Learn and practice strumming patterns / rhythms with the Asus, Dsus & Esus chords
- Three basic 4/4 strumming patterns
- Practicing the open chords in the key of C - C, Am, Am7, Dm, Dm7, G7, G, Em and Em7
- Practicing the open chords in the key of G - G, Am, Am7, C, D, D7, Dsus, Em and Em7
- Practicing the open chords in the key of D - D, D7, Em, Em7, G, G7, A, A7 and Asus
- Scarborough Fair jam-along
- Greensleeves jam-along
- The Banana Boat Song jam-along
Session 7 - Barre chords on the sixth string
Session 8 - Barre chords on the fifth string
- Music theory - half-steps and whole steps
- Natural notes on the 6th string up to the twelfth fret
- Learn and practice movable 6th string barre chords - F, F7, Fm, Fm7 and Fsus
- Music theory - major scales
- Home on the Range jam-along
- Yellow Rose of Texas jam-along
- Natural notes on the 5th string up to the twelfth fret
- Learn and practice barre chords - B, Bm, B7, Bm7 and Bsus
- Music theory - keys and key signatures, plus tips and tricks on determining a key from the key signature
- Parallel major and minor scales, and the relationship between them
- Jamaica Farewell jam-along
Session 9 - The secret to great strumming
- What constitutes a good strumming technique?
- Strumming with eighth notes, with and without ties
- Music theory - diatonic intervals
- Music theory - harmonic, major and perfect intervals
- Double sharps and double flats, plus a warning about enharmonic notes
- La Bamba jam-along
- The Wabash Cannonball jam-along
- Blues in E jam-along
Session 10 - Fingerstyle guitar
- Keys to good fingerstyle technique, and exercises
- Merle Travis fingerstyle technique
- Giuliani studies for classical guitar
- House of the Rising Sun jam-along. Listen to the sample clip (scroll to the bottom of the page)
- Johann Pachelbel's Canon in D jam-along
Session 11 - Pentatonic scales
Session 12 - Advanced chords
- Music theory:
- Definition of the pentatonic scale
- Parallel major and minor roots
- The five pentatonic forms
- Common pentatonic patterns in pentatonic form #1
- A Minor Pentatonic Blues jam-along
- G Major Pentatonic jam-along
- Around the Pentatonic World jam-along
- Open & movable Two chords - theory and exercise
- Open & movable Major 7th chords - theory and exercise
- Open & movable Minor 11th chords - theory and exercise
- Chord substitution for major and minor chords
- Rockin' jam-along
- Suspended Smooth jam-along
- Acoustic Groove jam-along
Session 13 - Playing the blues
Session 14 - Giving your playing some style
- Music theory - defining the blues scale
- Comparing C Major vs C Blues vs C Minor Pentatonic vs C Minor Pentatonic with Added Flatted 5th scales.
- Pentatonic forms with blues notes
- The Blues Chord Progression, and an example in C
- Music theory - triads: major, minor, augmented and diminished plus an example in C
- C Jam Blues jam-along
- Johnny's E Blues jam-along. Listen to the sample clip (scroll to the bottom of the page)
In this section, Steve teaches techniques such as tapping, bending, sliding and finding the sweet spot for palm muting. These can later be used in playing lead guitar and Session 19 - Soloing. I particularly like the section on bending, and here Steve shares a secret handed down to him by Larry Carlton on the difference between a proper bend and the "lazy man's" bend - that's one I hadn't heard of before.
Steve also shows what he terms as the "Eddie Van Halen" technique. This combines hammer-ons, pull-offs and tappings to form the basis of Eddie's style. Add in a little distortion and delay for a rock 'n roll effect and the riff sounds really, really close to the real thing. I now know where I went wrong when I tried to play something similar years ago - I had forgotten to execute the pull-off bit.
Jazz octaves is also another excellent addition to this session, and Steve gives a tip on how to make your playing sound closer to that of Wes Montgomery - that's a really nice touch!
Jam-alongs for this session:
- Bending the Blues
- Jazz Octaves
- The Funky Mute
Session 15 - Electric guitars - the heart of rock & roll
Session 16 - Advanced strumming
- Power chords - chord diagrams for movable F5 & B5 and open E5, A5, G5 & D5
- Power chord exercises
- Country Chicken Pickin' exercises
- Country Bends example
- Country Arpeggio example
- Sliding Fourths example
- The Harmonized Major Scale - major, minor and diminished
- Power Chord Rock. Listen to the sample clip (scroll to the bottom of the page)
- Power Riffs
- Sixteenth notes - theory and exercise
- Strumming exercises - 11 patterns, out which 8 are for strumming with accents
- Rolling Along
- A Little Bit Rocky
- Electric Funk
Session 17 - Going beyond the first position
This is an impotant session because you learn how to be able to play notes on the entire neck of the guitar.
Session 18 - Jazz
- Three note on a string scales - 1st to 7th forms of the F major scale are presented so you learn how to play all the way up to the twelfth fret. This helps build the foundation skills necessary for speed, executing the triplet technique and soloing.
- Music theory - the six types of Seventh chords - major 7th, minor 7th, dominant 7th, augmented 7th, diminished 7th and half-diminished 7th.
- Triplet Scale Practice
- Pop Ballad Groove
- ZZ Shuffle - extremely powerful stuff! Listen to the sample clip (scroll to the bottom of the page)
- Introducing Chord Melodies
- Movable Major 7th Chords - Fmaj7, Bmaj7, Dmaj7, Emaj7 and Gmaj7
- Open Major Seventh Chords - Amaj7, Cmaj7, Dmaj7, Fmaj7 and Gmaj7
- Movable Minor Seventh Chords - Fm7 and Cm7
- Ninth Chords - A9 and C9
- How to Jazz up Chord Progressions - add color tones, ii-V progressions and / or dress up the dominant seventh chord
- All of Me - this is such a beautiful track! Listen to the sample clip (scroll to the bottom of the page)
- On Green Dolphin Street
- As Time Goes By
Session 19 - Soloing
One important thing to note about this session is that you won't become a great lead guitar player just from going through this chapter. What it does do for you is tell you they whys and hows of soloing. You develop an appreciation of why some solos work and others don't. You won't be taught a large list of soloing or lead guitar styles.
- Where Do I Start?
- What makes up a good solo?
- Chord tone soloing exercises
- Ear training exercises
- Stevie's Groove jam-along
- Every Breath jam-along
If you thought this soloing chapter lets you learn the secrets and licks of the great lead guitarists, you'd be disappointed, just like I was initially.
But then I realized that more than any other course, the LMG program and all the 20 sessions within it thoroughly prepared me to venture into other material specific to playing the lead guitar. These specialized guitars courses assume a certain ability in reading music and prior understanding notes, scales and progressions, and I gave up very early due to a lack of music theory knowledge on my part.
One example I can think of is the Chicken Pickin' technique that was taught in Session 15. It teaches you enough to play simple country riffs and backing, but for the more advanced stuff, you'd want to sit down through an advanced course like Joe Dalton's Big Twang. Browse Joe's video samples, especially Chicken Pickin' Solo 1 - notice how he assumes that you already have a strong guitar playing foundation and knowledge of major and minor pentatonic scales? That's what I'm talking about. By hte way, the Big Twang forms the basis of the style played by the late guitarist Danny Gatton, one of my favorite guitarist of all time.
Me, I'm looking forward to once again going through those lead guitar / jazz books that I bought a long time ago.
Session 20 - All the chords you need to know
10 Bonus Workshop DVDs
- Chord formulas and abbreviations
- Altered chords
- Inversions and alternate bass chords
- How to construct your own chord
- Funky Groove jam-along
- Dancing on the Ceiling jam-along
These DVDs contain bonus workshops, and mirror the main DVDs, with each DVD having two workshops. You get 1 bonus workshop for each session, meaning 20 workshops in total.
You get this set of DVDs only if you purchase the expanded edition of the L&MG course.
5 Jam-Along CDs
Nothing beats the satisfaction of playing with other musicians, and these CDs provide that very experience. The quality of the tracks are fantastic, with a full band providing the music (listen to some audio clips). It's a great confidence-booster, and it won't be long before you find yourself wanting to play with a real live band or in front of real people.
Conclusion and recommendation
There's no doubt in my mind that the LMG course is one of the best guitar lessons (if not the best) money can buy. Nothing beats having a great guitar teacher who will teach you well and gives out lessons to small groups, but it's pretty challenging to find that great teacher who can fit their schedule to yours and teach at a convenient location.
Guitar books are a dime a dozen - you can see them lined up on the shelves at bookstores. These books are generally more suited to intermediate and advanced guitar players, and none of them provide a total multimedia experience in lesson delivery.
The numerous books that claim to focus on beginners lack components such as jam-along CDs or instruction DVDs that make all the difference in whether you can stick to the program and end up competently playing the guitar, or give up after a while.
It's extremely tough to learn the guitar just from reading books and looking at pictures - take it from me, I've been there and done that.
This course has got me all excited about learning the guitar from scratch, and filling the gaps in my playing (especially in reading music and theory of pentatonic scales and jazz chords and progressions) and I daresay that I play much better and more confidently now than I ever have.
Another big plus is the thriving LMG online community which provides support and a forum for students and Steve Krenz to openly communicate. Yes, there is such a forum, and you can join for free and browse around to see the enthusiastic activity in there from members who've purchased the course and discuss about their learning progress and almost everything else about guitar playing.
Nếu các bạn nào không có điều kiện download thì có thể liên hệ địa chỉ sau để được chia sẻ:
Y!M : vizano