March 19, 2014

Learning the guitar the Rocksmith way

I have played the prior version, but I have spent more time with this one. The servers say I am at sixty or so hours. I'm not a gamer, so that seems like a whole lot to me.

Here's the thing about Rocksmith, from a beginner's standpoint. You will get a lot better. Period. I feel so much more comfortable with the format here than puzzling over books and youtube videos. You will make mistakes, but the game adjusts. It is an incredible pedagogical tool masquerading as a game.


And this is just my feelings on it, but, I feel a bit of a parrot.  I can play the songs (better on the bass, less on the guitar) as they are presented but I have not memorized any. I can't just sit down and jam out, because the game throws these things at you that you can get good at without any understanding of music. It tries to force you to experiment, in the jam session mode, but that has been a leap for me.  I have an overall understanding of music, and I can play, but it lacks a certain nudge.  I know I need to find that in myself, but I am at the point where I need lessons and to talk to someone and to read books.  I like that I am at this point and I hope I continue perusing it, but this game is not the final point.  That is something you need to conjure from inside your self.

Good luck.

March 11, 2014

Bryan Lee O'Malley's "Lost at Sea": a snowflake on my consciousness that has since passed

Back when I was in grad school, if you were trying to write a paper and just spitballing ideas, a professor would ask you ”So what?”  Basically, they wanted you to justify what you were trying to create.  I hate to be overly critical, but I don’t think O’Malley really answers that with this finding-yourself road trip meditation.  It was passable, but ethereal, a snowflake on my consciousness that has since passed.  There is a passage near the end, the character is narrating the rest of the trip, and she says “Generally the rest of the story was probably more interesting if you were there and the jokes seemed funnier at the time.” I think this is true of the whole endeavor.