GUITAR MUSIC

This was a hand-out given on the first day to my guitar class at Davis & Elkins College in 1992. There have been several requests for reprints of it, so here it is. (Harvey Reid)


Guitar music is a place where the elements of rhythm, tone, emotions, harmony, melody, poetry, preparation, solitude, friendship, intellect, physical training and spirituality all meet. It involves your spirit, your body, your heart and your mind, and it is both a solitary and a social act. It not only offers the player the pleasure of making music, but it also offers to the skilled the ability to actually change other people's thoughts and feelings. Just by doing something you love to do, you can impart profound things to others and give them something they value. Those who discover that they have this ability, who feel obliged to develop it and who use it generously, will experience a reward comprising not only the satisfaction of the act itself, but also an abstract pleasure in sharing and communicating with others through the language of music. There is an energy, a sense of purpose and a direction that it imparts to its practitioners that can give a gratifying sense of meaning in what threatens to seem like a meaningless world.

Only through a lifetime of music will you experience an understanding of all the aspects of the art, but a basic awareness and regular reminders of the existence of all these various ingredients that make up music will allow the student to progress more quickly toward a mastery of it. There is, as always, a price to pay, and there are responsibilities that come with having the power to change other's thoughts and feelings, and not all who set out on this learning path make it all the way through.

The essential element in the study of music is a love of music and an appreciation of its sacredness. Music is not something your hands or your voice do. It is not something your mind does. At its finest it is a transcendental state that involves all parts of you, and allows you to exist on the crest of a wave, in the exact moment of the present as you perform each part of the music. It is only there, in the present that we can truly live and have control over our lives, since the past and future are inaccessible to us. When you are deeply involved in music and when you have control of it, you can experience an excitement and a sense of well-being that is impossible to duplicate. The sensation of the pleasure of music making is the primary thing a student of music must focus on. If enough time is spent in joyous music making and if the desire to share and transmit this feeling is strong and sincere, the hands will train themselves and the voice will find its true expression. One cannot hurry the process­p; you must instead enjoy and cherish it as it slowly unfolds. There is an unfettered freedom in being a beginner that you may look back on fondly some day. The desire to be something other than what you are will impede your ability to grow, and the amount of pleasure that music brings is relatively constant. If you are not experiencing that pleasure and fulfillment as a student, then you must learn how to do that before you can go further. The magic that is music comes from such a place inside us. And any beginner can experience these sensations just as easily as the master. If not more easily.

Harvey Reid (Elkins West Virginia 1992)

© 1992 by Harvey Reid

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This web site concerns the music and life of acoustic musician & music educator Harvey Reid.

If you don't find what you want, or if you have comments or questions, please email to

 

WOODPECKER MULTIMEDIA
PO Box 815 York Maine 03909  USA
phone (207) 363-1886


Lyrics About Harvey Reid
Concert Schedule Lyrics
Catalog of Recordings Buy From Us
Say Hello to Us Booking Information
Books The Song Train
Newest Recording About Joyce Andersen
Newsletter About the Partial Capo
Listen to Audio Lyrics
Hot News Listen to Audio
Guitar Tunings Interviews
Articles & Essays Reviews
Publicity Info Out of Print Music
Publicity Photos Lyrics
Downloads Listen to Audio
Say Hello to Us Favorite CD's
Harvey's Gear  

Harvey Reid Concert Schedule |Harvey's Blog | About the Liberty Guitar Method|Catalog of CD's and Tapes|Discography|About this Web Site & What's New Here | Hot News | Woodpecker Home Page | About Harvey Reid |The Song Train | Video | Audio | About Joyce Andersen | Books by Harvey Reid | Get On the Mailing List... | Concert & Record Reviews | Interviews with HR | Lyrics to Harvey Reid Songs | Harvey Reid Annual Newsletters | HR's Guitar Tunings | About the Partial Capo | Articles & Essays by HR | HR's Gear | HR's Favorite CD's | HR's Career History | Booking Info | Publicity Info & Download Files |


This web site concerns the music and life of acoustic musician & music educator Harvey Reid.

If you don't find what you want, or if you have comments or questions, please email to