I practiced arpeggios for another two-hour chunk today. For the last half hour, I didn't look at the guitar, not even if I took my hand away and needed to find my place. I did everything by ear and touch.

I noticed quite a bit in half an hour. I found that I was listening more intently. When I run a repeatable exercise, my mind often wanders while I watch my fingers run on autopilot. But if I'm not looking at the fretboard, I can't be sure that I'm doing the right thing without listening all the time. I was more in tune with little mistakes, correcting them on the next pass.

I also found that my fat strings (.012-.052) prevent my fingers from feeling where I am on the frets. If I'm not paying close attention, everything feels the same along the strings, in front of, behind, or right on top of a fret. I thought I noticed subtle differences in string pressure based on where a finger was placed, but that will require further investigation. I'll rig up a blindfold and keep it on for a whole day.

Today's Summary

  • warm-up: single string threes (124, 421, 134, 431), familiar territory (frets 4-12), 1 hr
  • SRV: "I'm Cryin'" strumming, solo, 1 hr
  • ear training (da riddim it gets 'arder), 1 hr
  • main arpeggios (maj7, 7, m7, m7b5), 12 positions, 2 hrs
  • TV picking exercises, 1 hr
  • some other stuff I forgot...