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  1. #1
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    Frank Gambale Chop Builder with Guitar TAB

    Great warm up 30 minutes video!
    I practise it without the pick on my nylon strings guitar...something different.


  2. #2
    I went through his entire Chopbuilder workout a couple times a number of years ago.

    It took me a couple hours to get through it.

    He does it in 30 minutes.

  3. #3
    Holy Crap! I'm exhausted just watching that. I may need to break out a headband and some wrist pads. Oh...and a smoothie from the gym. No pick and nylon strings, Kris? Impressive!

  4. #4
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    I confess to once starting out with the intention of being able to play through all this at speed along with Mr Gambale, a few years ago, and that ambition fell by the wayside. Anyhow I've started on it again - the first time I looked at it, I'd only just started using a pick again, after playing with fingers exclusively for a fair few years. I think now my pick approach is a lot more settled and developed, so I hope I may do better with the "Gambale challenge" and stick with it this time.

    Maybe I'm weird but I really like section 3 (starting at 9.24 on the video above) as a piece of music in it's own right - it just has a cool kind of sound that puts me in a good mood.

  5. #5
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    The video above seems to have some glitches and distorted sound for my favourite part, so I just thought I'd post it in all it's original early 90s leather-trousered glory...



    love that key change just after 2 minutes 10 seconds, it cheers me up somehow.

  6. #6
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    Also, it wouldn't suit me, but there is an immature bit of me that still really wants an original Ibanez S-series with locking trem and shark-tooth inlays like the guy on the right is playing...

  7. #7
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    @Meggy....Do it! You only come around once.
    "Ahhh - those Jazz guys are just makin' that stuff up!" - Homer Simpson

    "Anyone who understands Jazz knows that you can't understand it. It's too complicated. That's what's so simple about it." - Yogi Berra

  8. #8
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    Ha! ha!

    You bring back memories with this Kris. I bought this 9 years ago. It looked like fun but I never could consistently pick a pattern for very long without breaking down, making mistakes, getting discouraged, and losing interest.

    I may have to look for this again.

    It was fun and entertaining in a "cheesy" way. That was the 1980's for you!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlsoRan View Post
    Ha! ha!

    You bring back memories with this Kris. I bought this 9 years ago. It looked like fun but I never could consistently pick a pattern for very long without breaking down, making mistakes, getting discouraged, and losing interest.

    I may have to look for this again.

    It was fun and entertaining in a "cheesy" way. That was the 1980's for you!
    Speaking as someone who once tried this and kind of lost interest as well, I'm finding this time that I'm taking a bit more of a "Zen" approach, and that seems to help. So each section is broken down into individual exercises, and I just take an exercise, and really delve into it, figuring out my best way to finger the notes, and taking it quite slow at first, and focusing on keeping my playing as clean and efficient as possible, and the picking really even. There's quite a meditative, or therapeutic aspect when working like this I find.

  10. #10
    One thing with the Chopbuilder is that Gambale's exercises use economy picking.

    If you don't economy pick you have to make adjustments.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumbler View Post
    One thing with the Chopbuilder is that Gambale's exercises use economy picking.

    If you don't economy pick you have to make adjustments.
    With respect, and I've watched the video quite closely (even at half speed), I think at least for the most part it's just straight alternate picking. One might expect him to use economy picking, but in this video he doesn't seem to - I guess he still thinks it's important to have a solid alternate picking foundation. There is a specific sweep picking section of course.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Meggy View Post
    With respect, and I've watched the video quite closely (even at half speed), I think at least for the most part it's just straight alternate picking. One might expect him to use economy picking, but in this video he doesn't seem to - I guess he still thinks it's important to have a solid alternate picking foundation. There is a specific sweep picking section of course.
    I have the tabs for the course. He uses economy picking a lot. The scale practice uses economy picking.

    That's his thing.

    D-U-D-D-U-D...

    He can do it all though but his "method" is economy. I think this is one reason he never got really popular with the teaching videos. Alternate picking is the norm.

    I'm an FG fan. He's great.

    You just pick it the way you prefer. It's just something to be aware of.

    His books "Frank Gambale Technique 1 and 2" are quite good too. He's a very smart guy.

    Frank Gambale Chop Builder with Guitar TAB-mbook_frank_gambale_technique_book_1-0-jpg

  13. #13
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    I looked all over my home last night for the .pdf for this. I found the video but could not find that .pdf.

    I was not ready for the exercises mentally when I purchased it. I may be ready for it now.

  14. #14
    Gambale is not only a great technical player, he is also very knowledgeable musically.

    He's scary.

  15. #15
    ...
    Last edited by dasein; 11-17-2016 at 11:42 AM.

  16. #16
    That video was made in the 1980s.

    Big hair days.

    (Oops! Made in 90s.)
    Last edited by Drumbler; 11-18-2016 at 07:01 AM.

  17. #17
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    After digging through my library, I finally fount the little booklet. It brought back memories. I had only been playing a year or so when I bought it.

    I quit trying it because the fingering I was using was funky. For the first exercise after the warm-up, I was trying to use my pinky. I looked at the video and Frank and his buddies were shifting positions up and down the neck, using their strong fingers when possible.

    I tried it tonight and what a difference playing it with the shifting.

    I am going to try and work it into my routine, since I am starting to get some free time here and there. It is fun and tests my ability to concentrate. Most of these first exercises are indeed alternate picking, at least to my eyes looking at the video on my big screen TV so it ought to be fun as well.

  18. #18
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    I slow down video on my Transcriber soft and practise it...with my nylon string guitar - no pick...:-)

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumbler View Post
    I have the tabs for the course. He uses economy picking a lot. The scale practice uses economy picking.

    That's his thing.

    D-U-D-D-U-D...

    He can do it all though but his "method" is economy. I think this is one reason he never got really popular with the teaching videos. Alternate picking is the norm.

    I'm an FG fan. He's great.

    You just pick it the way you prefer. It's just something to be aware of.

    His books "Frank Gambale Technique 1 and 2" are quite good too. He's a very smart guy.

    Frank Gambale Chop Builder with Guitar TAB-mbook_frank_gambale_technique_book_1-0-jpg
    Fair enough @Drumbler - I've only worked on the first three sections, where he does seem to use alternate picking, even when moving between strings, and it may take me quite a while before I get onto any of the other parts. I am well aware of his economy and sweep picking expertise, and I think his chord work and compositions are very impressive as well. A great guitarist certainly!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Meggy View Post
    The video above seems to have some glitches and distorted sound for my favourite part, so I just thought I'd post it in all it's original early 90s leather-trousered glory...
    ...
    love that key change just after 2 minutes 10 seconds, it cheers me up somehow.
    I like how those 2 disciples have their heads turned left, eyes fixed on left hand fingers, while the leader is looking straight ahead, ... into the bright future ... of ... the great wide open ....
    ^ ^ ^
    <<< My BlogSpot Page >>>
    v v v

  21. #21
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    "... into the bright future ... of ... the great wide open ...." poetically put @Vladan, and you capture the feeling that track has for me very well - optimistic, soaring above the clouds, the future full of possibility...

    Incidentally, people are saying the video was made in the 1980s, hence the excusable hairstyle and fashion excesses, but I think it may actually have been early 90s - my evidence being that they are using Ibanez FGM model guitars, which were basically a variant of the S series that came out in that year. In fact two of the guitars appear to be the fixed bridge FGM 200 model, which apparently was released in 1994.

    Frank Gambale series | Ibanez Wiki | Fandom powered by Wikia

    According to Wikipedia, the video was released in 1993: Frank Gambale - Wikipedia

    So a shocking example of 80s fashion trends lingering into the 90s it would seem, and I clearly have too much time on my hands to be researching such things, and should be practicing the exercises instead.

  22. #22
    I have one of those and for all the silly 80s styling it have a remarkably good clean sound. I know it was made for the hair metal crowd, but it is a good instrument.
    I sometimes think it would be fun to bring to a standards gig.


    As for the Gambale lesson I doubt I have the discipline to practice that as much as might benifit me.


    Quote Originally Posted by Meggy View Post
    Also, it wouldn't suit me, but there is an immature bit of me that still really wants an original Ibanez S-series with locking trem and shark-tooth inlays like the guy on the right is playing...

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Meggy View Post
    "... into the bright future ... of ... the great wide open ...." poetically put @Vladan, and you capture the feeling that track has for me very well - optimistic, soaring above the clouds, the future full of possibility...

    Incidentally, people are saying the video was made in the 1980s, hence the excusable hairstyle and fashion excesses, but I think it may actually have been early 90s - my evidence being that they are using Ibanez FGM model guitars, which were basically a variant of the S series that came out in that year. In fact two of the guitars appear to be the fixed bridge FGM 200 model, which apparently was released in 1994.

    Frank Gambale series | Ibanez Wiki | Fandom powered by Wikia

    According to Wikipedia, the video was released in 1993: Frank Gambale - Wikipedia

    So a shocking example of 80s fashion trends lingering into the 90s it would seem, and I clearly have too much time on my hands to be researching such things, and should be practicing the exercises instead.
    So it was not released in the 80's?

    Wow. I guess like many of us, he was stuck in his favorite period, and it was hard for him (and his disciples) to let the 80's go.

  24. #24
    Meggy,

    You are right, Chopbuilder was released in the early '90s.

    It's been re-released in 2002 and 2007 apparently.
    Attached Images Attached Images Frank Gambale Chop Builder with Guitar TAB-chop-png 
    Last edited by Drumbler; 11-17-2016 at 09:01 AM.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumbler View Post
    Meggy,

    You are right, Chopbuilder was released in the early '90s.

    It's been re-released in 2002 and 2007 apparently.
    Ah, so that cover image ties in with the '94 release date for the FGM200 Ibanez model seen in the video, and Wikipedia would appear to be a year out saying 1993. There is some tongue-in-cheek, kitsch humour with the girls introducing each round, and at one point posing with guitars and pretending to play the exercises with Frank - so I suspect FG was playing up to that somewhat. I do find it a fun and inspiring video anyhow - I will have to check out his other releases and books.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Average Joe View Post
    I have one of those and for all the silly 80s styling it have a remarkably good clean sound. I know it was made for the hair metal crowd, but it is a good instrument.
    I sometimes think it would be fun to bring to a standards gig.


    As for the Gambale lesson I doubt I have the discipline to practice that as much as might benifit me.
    I confess I was perusing the bay yesterday looking at second hand s-series models. Some of the more recent ones have nice wood finishes, and I don't think would cause too much consternation at a standards gig even (as long as one avoided doing dive bombs etc. with the trem ). So perhaps can be seen as a classic fusion guitar model - I guess that would be my justification for getting one, and I do sometimes think it would be nice to use a bit of subtle trem "shading". I've no doubt they were/are fine instruments.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by kris View Post
    Great warm up 30 minutes video!
    I practise it without the pick on my nylon strings guitar...something different.

    This might be a dumb question, kris, but how do you use the Youtube video during your exercises so can play the correct part and keep up?

    I am wondering if these exercises can be memorized.

    I am guessing they can if you take them a section at a time.

    What do you think?

  28. #28
    Note: I removed my earlier post, after someone pointed out how insensitive and boorish it is to ascribe hearsay to someone (particularly about a third-party) without their knowledge or consent.

    While it's not your fault at all, I would appreciate if anyone who quoted me could edit that part out.

    Mea culpa, and apologies again to everyone involved.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlsoRan View Post
    This might be a dumb question, kris, but how do you use the Youtube video during your exercises so can play the correct part and keep up?

    I am wondering if these exercises can be memorized.

    I am guessing they can if you take them a section at a time.

    What do you think?
    I'd be interested to know what kris thinks as well AlsoRan, but speaking for myself, I find it definitely has become a thing to memorise - I take it one exercise at a time, with the aforementioned slow at first "Zen" approach, and after a bit of time, the exercise is inevitably commited to memory. And having a muscle memory developed for each exercise does seem to help with playing through a full section smoothly and cleanly. Still very much a work in progress for me, but I can't really imagine being able to get to my goal of being able to play along with the video at speed, without memorising everything.

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumbler View Post
    One thing with the Chopbuilder is that Gambale's exercises use economy picking.

    If you don't economy pick you have to make adjustments.
    You aroused my curiosity about the proper picking. I looked at the exercises and in titles some are labeled "warm-up alternate picking." As you advance and start doing little phrases, then it gets labeled differently.
    I know from looking at Frank's other videos that he uses his own brand of economy picking and sweep picking. It will be a challenge trying to figure out the picking that he wants you to use. I at least have the video and can maybe pick out what he does. If I like it, I will copy him. If not, I will stick with my own ways.
    Last edited by AlsoRan; 11-17-2016 at 10:52 PM.

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