John McLaughlin: This Is The Way I Do It
since 2003Power, Passion and Beauty - The Story of the Legendary Mahavishnu Orchestra has been published by Abstract Logix Books.
Recent articles (75 total)
This Is The Way I Do It
The Ultimate Guitar Workshop On Improvisation
Leave it to John McLaughlin to revolutionize how guitar improvisation is taught to the masses. One gets the sense that if DVD technology had not come around, McLaughlin would have invented it himself to find the perfect medium to impart his great knowledge. But it is true, that until the advent of this technology, there existed no completely satisfactory way for any musician to communicate his secrets or methods to future players without the cost of thousands of dollars and the necessity of one on one instruction. Since I have it on good authority that a guitarist's chances to get personal lessons from the busy McLaughlin are about nil, this DVD offers the opportunity to correct that reality and to correct it over and over and over.
This is the Way I Do It is a DVD landmark. It is the first music instruction DVD to use the full capabilities of the medium. Displayed for all of the chapters are three camera views, the left-hand, the right-hand and a score so that the player can follow along. Sub-titled in five different languages for worldwide application and professionally filmed in John McLaughlin's charming music library, this DVD makes it possible for the student to feel as if he or she is only a handshake away from the guitar master. This is the Way I Do It is 1,000 miles beyond other taped video guitar lessons which require constant rewinding and mind-numbing searching. Guitar players should not get fooled into buying instruction DVD's now on the market that are simply copied from the original VHS tapes. A new medium requires a new approach.
To be clear- this three DVD set (3 hours and 40 minutes) is not for beginning guitarists. You will need to have a working knowledge of scales to take advantage of the instruction right out of the box. But for every aspiring beginner, to have access to this collection would probably be just the motivation to hunker down and learn the scales in order to catch-up with the proceedings. This DVD is designed to help all guitar players, beginning improvisers and even the best professional players, find their own improvisational voices. Each DVD introduces a new level of skill. To master each level, and thus each DVD, will require the student at least one year of his or her time. This is not some video game. It is serious teaching. Yet, the instruction is presented in the most personal of ways. You will get to know John McLaughlin. (This is especially true after you have viewed the hilarious Bonus outtakes).
It is quite clear that the producers of this DVD, John's wife Ina and John himself, literally spent thousands of hours creating it. They were aided by many capable people including technicians and advisors from Apple Computer. It is beautifully filmed and recorded, cogently correlated and even has an interface with McLaughlin's website. Its format will become the gold standard of instructional DVD's.
This is the Way I Do It is John McLaughlin's musical legacy. It is the most important contribution he has ever made. When you consider his legendary musical accomplishments and how he has influenced thousands of wonderful musicians; that is no small feat. This DVD set is an invaluable tool for all guitar players who seek to find their own voices. Other instrumentalists will find it helpful to use as a window into the mind of a music genius. Everything is now changed.