After two recent messages on youtube (Norty and Cory, similar types of guitar players to me) I decided we need a support group for non-musical guitarists.
Let me explain.
Ohhhh I'm a fraud, a big liar, it's all sham, woe is me; for I know nothing about music, I just know how to play the guitar.
There, got it off my chest. "Hi, my name's JAW, I'm a non-musical guitarist". Well in fact I've insinuated it many times in previous posts and messages, I've just never really boiled it down for you all to comprehend.
Now I can see a few of you are scratching your heads, but a lot of you know exactly what I'm talking about. Let me further explain.
I never play scales, if pressed, I could probably play a major scale, but I wouldn't know what key it is. I don't know the difference between a delorian and a septatonic key. "C7" is a chord where you additionally put your pinky on the 3rd fret 3rd string, which is in fact a Bb. Okay the 7 means something about the seventh tone from the root note C - you do pick up a few things even when you aren't paying attention.
I once sat with a guitar teacher, and after asking me some questions and watching me play he summed it up perfectly: "Okay, so you're a pretty good guitar player but you have no idea what you are doing."
So, what's the problem with that?
There is a lot of problems with that. Foremost, you can't sit down with a real musician and weave the language of music on your instruments with each other. At best, you could learn a part of a duet by rote, and line them up. You'll have trouble developing an ear. My ear is terrible, I find it almost impossible to follow even a very simple melody. Most of my arrangements I've pulled together from half tabs and midi files. Creating your own compositions - some understanding of music will certainly help that process.
So why aren't I doing anything about it, and why are there people like us?
It's not that important to me. It's not where I derive my enjoyment of the guitar from. Perhaps one day it will be, but it's been 30+ years and I still haven't bothered - sure, I've scratched around the surface and I probably know more than I give myself credit for, but it isn't a driver in my guitar experience.
But it does mean I am relegated to playing solo, not really understanding the very principles behind what I do.
So if you know exactly what I'm talking about; either get on learning music, or join in my support group for non-musical guitarists :)