I'm a little discouraged... (not a pity party!)
Hi all. This is just a little about me, and some stuff I've been thinking about lately (may get redundant). I'm fairly new here, I signed up a few months ago to try to buy some JEMs from people, but to no avail (parents)... My name is Paul, 16 years old, born and living in Indiana. I'm up here late at night, and just wanted to express something that's been on my mind lately. I've been discouraged lately because I've seen all of these people that have been playing guitar or another instrument since they were really young. I really just got my own equipment about a year ago when I was 15, but I had been interested in playing since I was 14 when I played guitar at my friends birthday (I actually caught on quite well) and also over the next year whenever I went to his house (I think he actually got jealous because I learned the Pulp Fiction theme at his house one time and he couldn't play it but I could). So really I guess you could say I've been playing since I was like 14, but whatever. Anyways, my family has never been musical except my mom playing casually when she was young (like all little girls). I never got into piano when I was young because I just didn't like it, but I wanted guitar and drums. Of course when I asked for those on one of my earlier birthdays I got some tin cans and Kleenex box with rubber bands around it, and paper towel roll sticking out of it LOL (I'm not trying to get you to feel sorry for me). My family is not poor, they just didn't want to spend the money. Some kids are motivated by their parents to pickup an instrument, but I really wasn't. When I was young, my father was struck by lightning and had part of a tree fall on his head on another lightning strike. He didn't have it checked out so he ended up with some memory problems, and he now has Parkinsons and does what he can. He's like 57 and my mom is 53, really old compared to other people's parents I know; everyone thinks I'm adopted LOL. So, with my father sick and my mom working all during the week and sleeping on the weekends, I've never really been involved in anything as there was really no motivation. Then in sixth grade when they started to get kids in band I joined up to my parents surprise. I started on percussion, I was bored just smacking stuff so I switched to trombone. I went through band the next few years and grew to hate it as the instructors were just jerks; many people have quit because of them, including me. I was never really serious about it (I NEVER practiced, but still made Honor Band 3 years and instructors thought highly of me because I was a good musician or something), but I did learn how to read bass clef so that should help me if I ever compose I guess. So really, after I quit band I continued music through guitar which I described above. FINALLY, now that you know my musical history, I want to tell you something that's been on my mind. I've been discouraged because I've read about people who started guitar at younger ages than I have (and they have had more time to hone their skills and some are even better) and I just feel like I've lost a lot time I could've used playing guitar. All I've really ever done in the past is play video games and play recreational baseball which I managed to do very well in, even performing better than the kids who made the school teams. Then when I was trying out for school baseball I again felt this similar discouragement because a lot of the other kids had been playing on all-star and travel teams and had a lot more experience, but I couldn't because of my dad and stuff. I didn't really care about that anymore once I started playing guitar though. I've considered a career in music, but don't know what I want to do. I've never really been open about music in my family though because compared to my parents, our tastes our opposite (I like Vai stuff, classic rock, some metal; my parents like OLD stuff). I've also been shy about my playing because I played what they didn't like, but now that I've played what I like for them, they do like it... weird. I've progressed very well since I started playing I know a few songs all the way through perfect, and a couple minutes of a lot of others (like 20 maybe). I think my technique has progressed very quickly compared to other people I know, so that is good. I also had trouble finding a good teacher, I went through 2 who wanted to messing around teaching me electric guitar with an acoustic guitar, now I've got a great teacher. I think I've progressed so much because I played like 8 hours every day and all of it was constructive because I used places like Cyberfret as means of instruction. My current teacher is impressed with my abilites, he's even said I probably know stuff he doesn't know. So, I have plenty going for me, but I just feel like I could've started earlier and if I had the determination I currently have I could be very good, not likely though because not many people have that early fire for a serious musical career. I still don't know if I want to be a pro musician, but from the comments from many people I probably should. FINALLY (FINALLY) that's really all about me, I curious to see what your comments are. Thanks for reading.