Jess and her ten-year-old daughter, Rachel, have been learning guitar for the first time using the jamstik+, jamTutor, and FourChords Guitar Karaoke. Over the last 6 months, they've written about their learning experience while traveling around the United States with their family of 5 in an Airstream trailer. Check out Part 1 and Part 2 to read about their journey from the beginning!
I believe its a great day when your kids surpass you. Rachel and I started learning the jamstik+ together 6 months ago, and while we’ve both steadily been making progress, she seems to have reached a whole new level of accomplishment. As a homeschooling parent, it has been easy for me to assign her guitar practice everyday. However, it has taken consistent practice and dedication for Rachel to learn to love to play.
For the last few months, she has been focusing mostly on using the FourChords app and learning songs. Her current favorites are: “Eye of the Tiger”, “Gironimo”, and “Pompeii”. Using the app, she’s easily able to filter songs by chords. She can choose to exclude the pesky B chord, for example, and only look through songs she knows the chords for.
There are other advantages to using 4Chords. I sat down with her (since she has much more experience at this point than I do!) and she told me her top 5 things she loves about the 4 Chords app:
Each song teaches the a strum pattern - somethings Jam Tutor doesn’t currently cover. Each song has a chord and strum pattern tutorial I can work on before starting the song.
I can vary the background music - add piano or drums, and even change the vocal sounds.
I can change the tempo. When I start a song I can play slower until I become more familiar with the chords and music, or I can speed up the song to make it sound better.
There’s a large variety of popular songs which are fun to sing along with.
I love that I earn achievement points and get award titles. It keeps me motivated to practice everyday!
My goal from the beginning of learning the guitar was to sing songs around the campfire. While I have not quite yet achieved that goal, Rachel has! We had a campfire with two other nomadic families and Rachel sat and played for us. We had coyotes howling in the distance, a crackling warm fire, and her soft voice blended well with the music she played.
Rachel has made great progress after 6 months—Check out this awesome music video of her playing and singing to "Eye of the Tiger"!
We both still have a long way to go, but I’m excited to see Rachel’s progress.
We’ve teamed up to give away a jamstik+, travel case, and a 1-year subscription to the FourChords app!
Enter via this link. Contest ends on February 5, 2017 at midnight Mountain Standard Time. Good luck!
—Jess Curren, Currently Wandering
To learn more about Jess, Rachel, and their traveling family, check out their family blog, Currently Wandering.