Learning to Play Guitar: Chords, Scales, and Solos [TTC Video]

Learning to Play Guitar: Chords, Scales, and Solos [TTC Video]
Learning to Play Guitar: Chords, Scales, and Solos [TTC Video] by Colin McAllister
Course No. 7776 | .MP4, AVC, 1200 kbps, 856x480 | AAC, 192 kbps, 2 Ch | 24x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 7.51GB

The guitar is the perfect first instrument to not only learn how to play, but to learn how to read, understand, and enjoy music. And, whether you’ve had a few years of lessons, taught yourself, or never picked a guitar up, this course is the perfect way to start.

Brilliantly designed so you can learn from the ground up, Learning to Play Guitar: Chords, Scales, and Solos is a unique and effective way to rapidly access one of the most meaningful, enjoyable, and satisfying forms of self-expression. You don’t need to know how to read a note when you start this course, but even if you do, you’ll quickly gain new techniques, knowledge, and understanding.

The highly original modular format of this course is designed to immediately get you from learning to playing. Each of the 24-lectures begins with an engaging historical narrative, or personal story, and then dives right in with five modular units of instruction:

  • Technique—Learn the correct way to hold the guitar, how to move naturally around the instrument, and all of the core skills of guitar playing, from left hand fingering and shifting to right hand strumming, finger picking, and pick playing.
  • Musicianship and Note Reading—Learn how to read three kinds of musical notation, and discover that reading music is actually quite simple if you learn it in short, easy steps; grasp how to play and read rhythms, and develop the ability to play by ear.
  • Chords—Discover how to play a wide range of basic chords--the harmonic building blocks of music and the musical foundation under a melody; study chord theory, and the fundamentals of musical structure.
  • Scales and Melodic Patterns--Study the fundamental scales for guitar—another vital building block of guitar playing—as well as guitar melodic patterns or “licks,” tools that give you the ability to play lead guitar lines and melodies.
  • Putting it All Together—From the very first lesson, put together what you’ve learned in real guitar tunes and pieces, covering a variety of different musical styles. Each lesson is capped off with a song that puts all the material to use.

Why the guitar? Like the piano, the guitar is a stand-alone solo instrument, and an endlessly adaptable “partner” for musical and vocal accompaniment. Amazingly versatile, the guitar is an instrument with an unparalleled range of expression, encompassing rock, pop, jazz, country, blues, and classical styles of music. And yet, the fundamentals of the guitar are surprisingly easy to learn—and quickly! The guitar is also one of most affordable and portable instruments. What you learn from studying the guitar easily translates to all musical instruments and disciplines, including singing, songwriting, and arranging.

Your instructor is Dr. Colin McAllister, a popular teacher and performer, whose wide musical range extends from rock bands, and the Avant garde, to classical solo guitar, chamber music. symphony orchestras, and jazz groups. Dr. McAllister studied under the “First Family” of the classical guitar—the Romero brothers—and befriended one of America’s greatest jazz guitarists, Johnny Smith. He sprinkles this course with well-told stories and deft lessons from more than 25 years of professional experience. He also shatters the myth that you must have special talent, or start at an early age, to play an instrument well. Sharing his own stories, which range from poignant to hilarious, and joined by a promising guitar student and guest vocalists, Dr. McAllister shows you that learning even four guitar chords will open up a world of possibilities, encompassing hundreds of songs, as well as styles and eras.

As you make your way through each lesson on the path from beginner to accomplished musician, you will gain the equivalent of two semesters of university-level instruction, or dozens of hours of private instruction, along with the material for hundreds of hours of practice.

This course quickly becomes an experience—one that will deepen your appreciation of everything musical that you hear.

Master the Basics of a World-Spanning Instrument

TGC’s Learning to Play Guitar: Chords, Scales, and Solos presents an engaging and adaptable learning system, developed by Dr. McAllister over decades of professional playing and teaching, which will have you playing the guitar in a remarkably short amount of time. The rapid results of these lessons are a result of Dr. McAllister’s ability to present each element of guitar playing in clear, graspable steps.

Starting from the beginning, and building one element on another, Dr. McAllister introduces you to a spectrum of basic principles and musical material, giving you a solid foundation for playing the guitar and for further study in any style. Beginning with simple chords and bass lines, you’ll learn how to play both melodies and accompaniment, as well as a range of musical styles and guitar techniques, encompassing traditions such as jazz, rock, classical, flamenco, blues, reggae, and many more.

Dr. McAllister also takes you on an odyssey into the history of the guitar, its greatest players, and the styles they created and embodied, from guitar legends to many pivotal but lesser known figures. Each lesson explores a significant topic related to the lore of the guitar, giving you a wealth of material to explore on your own.

One of the biggest benefits to this course of study is that each lesson is customizable, allowing you to study the material in a preferred sequence or focus on areas that interest you, and are easy to reference for review and practice. And the learning system is highly visual, giving you the chance to learn by watching the professor play, and using diagrams, drawings, and animations to help you incorporate the material.

Build A Solid Base for Playing in Many Styles

This course is expertly designed to give you a base knowledge of both guitar playing skills and different guitar styles. For beginners as well as more experienced players, these are techniques and materials which you can use immediately, and will give you much to explore and expand on. Some important elements you will cover include:

The Art of Improvising:

Improvising on the guitar is based on a fundamental grasp of chords and scales, as the title of the course suggests. As the lessons unfold, you’ll learn major, minor, seventh, dominant seventh, and diminished chords in different keys, and “power” chords for rock music, as well as the major and minor scales, blues scale, pentatonic (five-tone) scales, “modal” scales, and arpeggios (broken chords)—all of which will equip you to improvise in any style.

Guitar Skills:

Enriching your left and right hand technique, you’ll practice a range of key guitar skills, which will take your music-making in many exciting directions. Among these, you’ll learn “Travis picking” for folk, country, and rock playing; tremolo, which gives the illusion of a sustained tone; legato techniques (called “hammer-ons” and “pull-offs”) for shaping melodies; rasgueado, a dynamic flamenco strumming technique, harmonics (beautiful, bell-like guitar tones), barre technique (for “movable” chords), and how to accompany a vocalist.

Guitar Styles:

Throughout the lessons, you’ll learn the elements of many different musical styles. As key examples, you’ll grasp the basics of jazz harmony, making use of your seventh chords and modal scales, blues, using the blues scale and licks, and you’ll explore rhythm guitar, “piano-style” guitar, classical styles, Spanish flamenco, and others. In all cases, you’ll learn to play songs in the styles you’ve studied.

Elements of Music Theory:

In this course, for everything you learn to play, you will also learn to read it in music notation. Step by step, you’ll grasp how music is organized in terms of rhythm and harmony, both conceptually and on the page, and how different pitches, rhythms, keys, and tonalities are written. In the process, you’ll learn to read musical key signatures and time signatures, rests (musical silences), how to use a metronome, how to understand common chord progressions, and more.

Pathways to Strong Guitar Technique:

In instrumental music, “technique” is the how of playing the instrument naturally and efficiently. Proper technique is vital to successful guitar playing—as important as any other element—for achieving ease with the instrument and avoiding physical problems in playing. Throughout these lessons, you’ll learn elements of good technique such as “planting” (a practice for building technical accuracy), efficient hand position, exercises for the independence of the fingers, dexterity with a guitar pick, speed and accuracy in playing melodies, moving efficiently between chords, and how best to practice the different guitar skills you learn.

Travel into the Fascinating History and Lore of the Guitar

Throughout the lessons, Dr. McAllister’s passion for the guitar and for teaching, as well as his energetic and charismatic style, make this a highly enjoyable learning process. He enriches the lessons with inspiring and eloquent commentary on the nature of practice, the habits of successful guitar players, the value of music, and how best to study and learn.

In bringing you into the world of the guitar, he speaks vividly of the instrument’s evolution, history, and musical roles, and of the lives of guitarists—from his own professional experiences and road stories to the contributions and innovations of the instrument’s most legendary players, such as:

  • John Fahey--a master of steel-string fingerstyle guitar playing;
  • Augustin Barrios “Mangoré“--Paraguayan guitarist, composer, and poet; an outlandish genius, innovator, and one of the first classical guitarists to record;
  • Emily Remler--an astonishing talent, an improbable figure in jazz (white, middle class, woman), and one of the finest players of her time;
  • Charlie Christian--the first modern jazz guitarist, who transformed big band music, and reinvented the jazz guitar as a solo instrument; and
  • Michael Hedges--one of most innovative and influential acoustic guitarists, who pioneered ingenious alternate tunings of the instrument.

Learning to Play Guitar: Chords, Scales, and Solos offers you an engaging and highly effective way to master the fundamentals of this incredibly versatile instrument. With these 24 expertly designed lessons, the world of the guitar and the sheer joy of playing it are yours.

Learning to Play Guitar: Chords, Scales, and Solos [TTC Video]

Learning Statistics: Concepts and Applications in R [TTC Video]

Learning Statistics: Concepts and Applications in R [TTC Video]
Learning Statistics: Concepts and Applications in R [TTC Video] by Talithia Williams
Course No 1480 | MP4, AVC, 1100 kbps, 856x480 | AAC, 192 kbps, 2 Ch | 24x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 8.54GB

“Show me the data!” This is coin of the realm in science, medicine, business, education, journalism, and countless other fields. Of course, it’s more complicated than that, because raw data without interpretation is useless. What they mean is “Show me the statistics”—well-founded, persuasive distillations of data that support a claim under discussion.

The ability of statistics to extract insights from a random collection of facts is one of the most astonishing and useful feats of applied mathematics. That power is all the more accessible today through the statistical programming language R, a free, open-source computer language with millions of users worldwide—everyone from students and nonprofessionals to managers and researchers at the forefront of their disciplines.

In this era of big data, with a solid understanding of statistics and the tools for interpreting data, you don’t have to trust someone else’s analysis of medical treatments, financial returns, crop yields, voting trends, home prices, or any other interpretation of data. You can do it yourself.

Designed for those who appreciate math or want an introduction to an essential toolkit for thinking about the uncertainty inherent in all sorts of information, Learning Statistics: Concepts and Applications in R teaches you elementary statistical methods and how to apply them in R, which is made even more powerful when combined with the user interface of RStudio. (Both R and RStudio are free and downloadable for multiple platforms.)

In 24 challenging and in-depth half-hour lectures, award-winning Professor Talithia Williams of Harvey Mudd College walks you through major concepts of an introductory college-level statistics course, and beyond, using examples developed and presented in R. Compared with “canned” statistics packages, R brings users into a more hands-on, mind-engaging approach that is becoming the standard at top-tier statistics programs throughout the country.

An Associate Professor of Mathematics and the Associate Dean for Research and Experiential Learning at Harvey Mudd, Dr. Williams is a nationally recognized innovator in statistics education, noted for her popular TED Talk, “Own Your Body’s Data,” and she is cohost of the PBS NOVA series NOVA Wonders.

R You Ready for a Fresh Approach to Statistics?

In a course that repays multiple viewings, Professor Williams presents the most widely-used statistical measures, concepts, and techniques: how and when to use them, what they mean, and how to recognize when arguments or conclusions based on statistical data are suspect or wrong.

Learning Statistics will especially benefit those who want to go beyond a beginner level and get a deeper, fuller understanding of the discipline. And for anyone who learned statistics many years ago, this course gives an updated experience of what is going on in the field today and how user access to the R programming language is transforming the everyday practice of statistics.

The special advantages of this video-only course include:

  • Statistics concepts combined with R examples: Viewers get a two-for-one combination of thorough grounding in statistical concepts with ground-up demonstrations of how problems are solved with the R programming languge
  • A guided tour of R in action: Viewers get a gentle introduction to R in use—from how to download R and RStudio, to importing and exporting data, writing code, and generating plots. All examples in the course are conducted in R.
  • Enhanced graphics: On-screen graphics are based on outputs from RStudio, but with frequent enhancements to make the visuals even easier to read and understand.
  • Large screen or handheld: The presentation has been optimized for everything from TVs and computers to mobile devices, meaning you can watch it on a handheld device with the same comfort and clarity as on a television screen.
  • Links to the R community: When you finish these lectures, you are not on your own. Professor Williams helps you join the worldwide community of R users, who have been advising the novice and expert alike for two decades.

Professor Williams has organized the course so that it can be taken straight through, proceeding from elementary descriptive statistics to standard and advanced techniques in statistical inference. Those with a background in other statistics software may also find the progression very helpful, while students seeking help in specific areas can jump in and out at any point throughout the course.

Discover a Powerful Set of Statistical Tools

Learning Statistics begins with an overview of the field, including how to calculate and display summaries of data. Professor Williams then introduces R and discusses its advantages over other statistical analysis packages. Unlike many such products, which are costly to purchase and upgrade, R and RStudio are entirely free. Before the end of Lecture 2, you are up and running R code.

The next six lectures cover descriptive statistics and probability, in which you learn to draw conclusions from a given sample of data by using visual aids such as histograms, scatterplots, and box plots. Employing concepts such as the normal distribution, central limit theorem, and correlation, you explore a variety of probability distributions and graphical analysis techniques. You are introduced to the formulas for these operations as well as the simple R commands that run them automatically.

Starting in Lecture 8, you explore the remarkable power of statistics to make inferences about an entire population, based on a small sample. You discover how to frame a hypothesis, build a model, and deduce propositions from the resulting data. You study simple linear regression, multiple linear regression, ANOVA (analysis of variance), and other cornerstone techniques, while also using R to run simulations of many different scenarios from the R Datasets Package.

In the last third of the course, you learn how statisticians go beyond what beginners are often taught, developing branches of applied statistics that have spun off to form their own immensely productive specialties. These include:

  • Experimental design: While there are many techniques for analyzing data you already have, even more powerful is designing an experiment to decide how data is collected from the start. Consider such elements of good design as blocking, randomization, and replication to ensure that your experiment produces sound statistical results.
  • Spatial statistics: Maps have always been information-rich artifacts, but they are now more useful than ever thanks to the advent of GPS-enabled data-gathering devices and powerful computers, combined with a panoply of statistical tools for treating spatial autocorrelation as a rich new source of information.
  • Time series analysis: Just as fascinating as spatial data is information collected sequentially over time—in finance, meteorology, biology, agriculture, and other fields. One of the most important goals of time series analysis is forecasting, which extracts short- and longer-term patterns in the data.
  • Bayesian inference: Textbook statistics is often based on a “frequentist” paradigm, in which sampling is theoretically unlimited. But for many real-life situations, your information is almost always incomplete, and likely to be revised. This is the forte of Bayesian inference.

You close the course with a lecture on how to customize R to select and combine information in whatever way you want, so that R best serves your own needs.

Dr. Williams has made it her life’s work to get students, parents, educators, and the community at large excited about mathematics and especially statistics, which she describes as “a powerful framework for THINKING—for reaching insights and solving problems.” As witnessed by her TED Talk, which has been viewed over one million times, Dr. Williams has a gift for demystifying statistics and making it relevant to everyone—because whenever you hear a statistical argument that directly affects your health, livelihood, autonomy, or your firmly held beliefs, you should say, “Show me the data, so I can decide for myself.” With this course, you will be able to do exactly that.

Learning Statistics: Concepts and Applications in R [TTC Video]

The American West: History, Myth, and Legacy [TTC Video]

The American West: History, Myth, and Legacy [TTC Video]
The American West: History, Myth, and Legacy [TTC Video] by Patrick N Allitt
Course No 8552 | MP4, AVC, 1250 kbps, 856x480 | AAC, 192 kbps, 2 Ch | 24x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 8.02GB

The brutal conflict of cowboys and Indians. Dusty, dangerous outposts policed by vigilante justice. The six-shooter showdown at high noon. Daring railroad heists and arduous cattle drives. These and other scenes from countless Western films have so shaped our conception of the American West that it’s impossible to separate myth from reality. But how wild was the West? Was it really ever “won”?

According to historian and award-winning Professor Patrick N. Allitt of Emory University, the historical approach to understanding the American West has moved far beyond pop culture in recent years. “Nearly all the clichés and bromides of the old Western history have been discarded,” he says. “We’re now much more aware of the histories, not just of the people who happened to end up on top—but also the histories of the diverse peoples who were defeated or displaced.”

It turns out that the legendary people and events we associate with the Wild West—the last stand at the Alamo, the Battle of Little Bighorn, the exploits of Calamity Jane and Kit Carson, the glories and hardships of the Gold Rush and the Oregon Trail—are just as exciting in the light of history as the tall tales that have defined our conception of them.

Explored chronologically, they form a story more thrilling than any Hollywood Western. And it’s a story not just of adventure and danger but a story about how the United States, as it acquired new territories and encountered new peoples, transformed a collection of newly independent states into a continent-bestriding colossus that would dominate the 20th century.

Designed to shine a light on truths about westward expansion and the American frontier (sometimes uncomfortable, always insightful), The American West: History, Myth, and Legacy is a way for you to experience the grit and grandeur of an epic period in American history. Professor Allitt’s 24 lectures, rich with historical detail, take you from the era of the American Revolution to the beginning of the 20th century and uncover new historical angles and perspectives about events and themes ranging from the Lewis and Clark expedition to the Indian Removal Act to the creation of America’s first national parks. Packed with period maps and artwork, photographs, diary entries, and more, this course is an entertaining, eye-opening, balanced look at the achievements and sufferings of a period and place as important as it was wild.

Over 200 Years of Frontier History

Central to Professor Allitt’s course is dispelling the idea of the American West as a single, monolithic place and idea. There is a great diversity to the American West that it is easy to overlook.

“It’s actually an area almost as big as Europe, incorporating some of the hottest and coldest places in the inhabited world,” says Professor Allitt. “The area we think of as the West today includes mountain ranges, deserts, canyons, badlands and some of the richest, most productive farmland in the world. At different times, it has been inhabited and claimed by indigenous peoples, Spaniards, Frenchmen, Britons, and Americans. Its people today have distinctive voices, clothes, traditions, and music, and they keep alive a distinct set of ideals and attitudes different from those of their fellow Americans back East.”

Befitting an area of such epic scope and diversity, The American West encompasses more than 200 years of history and the most important events, themes, and ideas that form the backbone of the frontier’s reality—and legend. Just some of the major topics you will explore in this course include:

  • The Transcontinental Railroad: Perhaps the most defining moment for the American West was 1869, when the two lines of the Transcontinental Railroad met at Promontory Point in Utah. While the system brought more people (including immigrants) and money out west, many sections were built so badly they had to be renewed almost at once.
  • The Trail of Tears: Named the “Trail of Tears” by the Cherokee, the forced migration of America’s “Five Civilized Tribes” in the 1830s resulted in the loss of traditional homes in the East in exchange for federal lands out West (referred to as “Indian Territory”). A central figure in this dark moment in American history: President Andrew Jackson.
  • Manifest Destiny: This phrase, coined by journalist John O’Sullivan regarding the nation’s claims on the Oregon territory in the 1840s, came to embody the spirit of westward expansion—and the conflicts it provoked. The idea behind Manifest Destiny was that it was America’s God-given right to spread liberty and democracy across the continent.
  • The Gold Rush: With the discovery of Californian gold in 1848, the American West, for the first time, became a destination of mass appeal for Americans. With the mad rush for quick wealth, however, came rampant fraud. Prospectors had to learn quickly how to distinguish gold from “fool’s gold” (iron pyrites). The simplest way to do so is now the most iconic: biting it.
  • Cowboys and Cattle: After the Civil War, American cowboys herded cattle to railheads across the West, from where they would eventually feed the industrial workers back East. The most famous cattle trail, the Chisholm Trail (named after a half-Cherokee cowboy) spanned over 500 miles between Texas and Kansas, and could take up to two months to traverse.

The West in Popular Culture

A vivid popular culture sprang up around the American West as the area developed. While Professor Allitt uses these lectures to lay bare the often harsh realities of life out west, he also points out how popular culture—books, paintings, films—can help us understand the intimate details of life for everyday men and women. By looking critically at popular depictions of the West, you will:

  • Learn about one of the best accounts we have of the cowboy way of life: the 1885 biography A Texas Cowboy, or Fifteen Years on the Hurricane Deck of a Spanish Pony.
  • Open an illuminating window into the emotional lives of homesteaders on the Great Plains through novels including My Ántonia and Little House on the Prairie.
  • See how paintings by iconic American artist Frederic Remington emphasized the adventurous men who pitted themselves against the landscape of the West.
  • Discover how historian Frederick Jackson Turner’s “frontier thesis” (that the frontier defined American democracy) had an immense influence on generations of historians.
  • Break down the main plots of Western films and understand how new historical understanding has led to a shift in the genre’s plots and characters.

A Clearer Picture of the Wild West

Over the years, Professor Allitt has brought his incredible historical knowledge and his engaging teaching style to multiple Great Courses popular with our lifelong learners. The American West is no exception to this tradition. Professor Allitt imbues every single lecture not only with insight and knowledge, but with a contagious passion for the American West—both the heroic idea of it and the more complex historical reality.

Additionally, the lectures in The American West are enriched with historic photographs and illustrations, period artworks and maps, and quotes from first-person accounts and history-changing documents.

“Anyone who studies the subject of the American West quickly discovers that the myths sometimes had a more tenacious grip on Westerners’ minds than the realities,” says Professor Allitt. “But with a close look at the facts and how they’ve been stretched and spun over time, the muddled picture of the place that many people have in their minds will become clearer.”

Saddle up for an exciting adventure in learning.

The American West: History, Myth, and Legacy [TTC Video]

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