The Easiest yet Most Powerful Guitar Lesson you will ever learn
If you'd like to test your improvising skills to the backing track in the video above, you can download it here. The chord progression is: Bm - F#7 - A - E9 - G - D - Em - F#7 ... if, like me, you find that the scale/mode mindset leaves you wanting, then it's time to order PlaneTalk and learn how to see your fretboad as one long chord. With practice, you'll be able to see all the possibilities laid it before you, the whole length of the fretboard. Those scales and modes will take of themselves.
Here are some other examples of me playing some melodic improvisations over different styles of music. These are all played without once thinking 'scale', 'mode', 'Blues scale' or 'Pentatonic'.
The PlaneTalk Package
PlaneTalk is a 12" X 8" 80 page book. I used the comic strip format as a way of imparting the information in a fun and concise way, as a conversation between the guy who knows and the guy who doesn't. I have them trapped together on an airplane flight, hence the title. I also designed theGuitar Slide Rule — a folded-sleeve-with-insert affair — that graphically crystallizes the lesson. The DVD demonstrates the mindset in real time to real music.
The PlaneTalkers' Forum — a private forum — is an online discussion board where you can find me and other PlaneTalkers on a daily basis. It's also where you'll find the 19 Bonus Lessonsthat I have put together over the years. It's a very active meeting place where members regularly upload examples of their playing for critique and where you can ask questions about music in general and the PlaneTalk mindset in particular.
The bonus lessons are a collection of 20 lessons I've put together over the years that teach various aspects of the mindset, over 3.5 hours worth of movies, all reinforcing the simple but all-powerful lesson that PlaneTalk teaches.
Enough to keep you busy for a lifetime and I can pretty much guarantee that your playing will move ahead by light years. In fact, most of my customers tell me they will never need to buy any other instruction material again.
I send these out air mail from Australia in sturdy packaging. Unfortunately, Australia Post doesn't offer tracking numbers for international parcels for this size/weight, but problems are rare and if any occur, I will re-ship. Transit time is usually between 7 and 14 working days for America, about the same for Europe. I include instructions for joining the forum in the package.
Frequently Asked Questions
I only just bought my first guitar. Is PlaneTalk for me?
I didn't write PlaneTalk for beginners but more for those who have mastered the basics and are now stuck. However, many beginners have bought it and tell me that they're very pleased they did, that the basic theory lesson, fretboard map and mindset it teaches have made learning much easier. I certainly wish someone had shown me this when I was starting out, it would have saved me a good twenty years of poking around the fretboard searching for that one 'constant' I knew must be there.
Do I need to know any theory?
No. PlaneTalk in fact goes through basic theory in plain English before moving on to describing the 'trick' to seeing your fretboard as familiar, well traveled territory. You will learn why it is so important to always know what it is you're playing and how music is structured and how easy it is to keep track of it all using the PlaneTalk mindset. It's a lot easier than you think. With lots of practice, of course.
Will I be needing to remember endless patterns?
No. PlaneTalk makes use of an extremely simple landmark, one you learned in the first few days of playing. Many PlaneTalkers tell me they're amazed and annoyed that they didn't 'see' it themselves. As simple as it is, its ramifications are endless and -- if you're anything like me -- will become the only thing you really need to consciously be aware of.
This doesn't require me to remember movie stars' names or other odd mental gimmicks, does it?
No, no silliness, no gimmicks. The PlaneTalk mindset uses a landmark that IS music, one that displays at a glance the context of the moment. With practice, of course.
What if I don't understand it?
The chances of that are slim, as it's such a simple mindset. However, depending on your level of playing, you may wonder how to use the knowledge. In that case, just come to the PlaneTalkers' Forum where you can ask me and many other PlaneTalkers any questions you may have. Sometimes it takes a while to see the need to have the whole fretboard at your disposal, but once you do, the PlaneTalk mindset will be yours forever more. Most PlaneTalkers say they will never need to buy another book again, that all they need now is time to refine their art.
Do I need to read notation or tablature?
No. PlaneTalk doesn't go into any of that. PlaneTalk, among other things, describes in plain old English a way to map out the fretboard. It teaches a mindset that you can use to improvise chordally and melodically, to literally see the endless possibilities the whole length of the fretboard ... with lots of practice, of course. I use graphics and common analogies to explain some aspects of music, but you won't be scratching your head over any dotted crotchets or mysterious Greek names. I don't read notation very well myself.
I know all my scales and modes. How will PlaneTalk help me?
If you are happy with the results you achieve when improvising using scales and modes, and happy with your understanding of how music works and applies to the guitar, then don't bother ordering. But, as I've heard said, if you practice scales, you end up playing scales. Scales and Modes are not really music, they're the building blocks. Melody is the music and melody is not all that easy to extract from scales and modes, especially when you start getting into more complex chord progressions where just playing the 5 notes of the Pentatonic scale doesn't work. The PlaneTalk mindset allows you play over any chord progression ... with practice, of course.
What's the difference between the book and the DVD?
The book describes very methodically the logic behind it all. It takes you through basic theory then explains the power of the PlaneTalk mindset in plain English. The DVD demonstrates the technique to real music clips, showing real playing and using all the overlay features of modern video editing. So what the book explains, the DVD demonstrates.
What's the slide rule all about and why can't I see a better image of it?
The Guitar slide Rule crystallizes the whole mindset, shows you instantly how your brain should perceive the fretboard at any given moment. I don't show a better image of the slide rule because the mindset is so simple I'd be giving it all away.
What are the bonus lessons all about?
Over the years I have put together many stand-alone paid lessons demonstrating the PT mindset, many of them related to The Blues. Most are video lessons, over 3 hours of viewing in total. They're all free now.
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"A fresh and new approach to helping young and old to have a more complete understanding of music and the guitar.
Well done, Kirk." ~ Tommy Emmanuel CGP
"The whole PT idea is truly a brilliant concept and has improved my understanding of guitar playing beyond all recognition. I just can't thank you enough!" ~ Zap (PlaneTalkers' Forum)
"Well your PlaneTalk book Blew My Mind! I have been trying to understand the relationships between Chords, Scales, and the Fret Board for many year. So to see it so simply laid out was very revealing. I sure wish I had had you book some 25yr ago when I started playing." ~ Ryan from Thailand
"Please accept my sincere thanks for your PlaneTalk efforts - truly outstanding work".
~Dennis D (USA)
"Wow! The book made me feel so dumb and so enlightened at that same time. All these years I never noticed some of the things your book showed me." ~ Eric from Georgia, USA~
"I did my first read-through of PlaneTalk and watched the video last night. Super stuff - I am very impressed. Years ago I used to claim to my AI students that intelligence was the ability to see differences where others see sameness and to see sameness where others see differences - that puts you off the scale in music IQ, I reckon. ;-)" ~ Aigeezer (PlaneTalkers' Forum)
"I have had PT for about two weeks now and can safely say it is the best thing I have ever purchased." ~ Knight46 (PlaneTalkers' Forum)
"Hi Kirk, I received your Plane Talk book, dvd and slide rule. After watching the dvd and using the slide rule, the guitar fretboard is finally making sense to me! ... I have never heard anyone explain the fretboard like you do in this course. It really makes understanding the fretboard easy. Thanks very much!
" ~ Esko (Toronto, Canada)
"Just wanted to write and say a big thanks for Planetalk. For years I've been fruitlessly searching for a way to link together the little pockets of guitar knowledge that I've been plugging away at - and you have provided that link through Planetalk. ... So thanks again, and hats off to you!" ~ gogogoch (PlaneTalkers' Forum )
"I just wanted to complement you on your usefulness practicality of plane talk. Having played guitar for a good while. I've been through the modes/scales and various caged minicourses..I should have found yours first...cuts to the meat of the matter...your slide rule will stay in my guitar case.....you need to make a permanent version (hard plastic) as I will wear this out!"
~ Bert (USA)
" I'm absolutely thrilled with the product- in two weeks I've learned as valuable an approach to studying the guitar as I have playing it over the past 11 years. Everyone should learn to play this way. Thanks very much and kudos on a great product. Best." ~ Mike from New Jersey, USA
"Some 45 years after learning to play guitar, I found Plane Talk and it changed everything. Kirk's simple, entertaining book and instructive DVD opened up a whole new way for me to think about and play the guitar that I wouldn't have found on my own." ~ Dave Berman from Nebraska, USA
"I've just finished watching you dvd ... I am indebted to you. You are the first person to give me just exactly what I've been searching for! I am extremely grateful to you. The quality of the book is outstanding and your method or 'trick' is just perfect. Thank you so much for sharing your very special gift. I can now stop beating myself up for my failure to find out how to improvise."
~ Alan S from UK
"After going through PlaneTalk a couple of times I am quite frankly amazed at how simple it makes things. It does not teach you to play guitar as such BUT it EMPOWERS you to learn (with hard work), to teach yourself play any kind of music you like. It breaks all music down to its simplest form, the lowest common denominator. I honestly believe that I'll never have to spend any more money on guitar instructional material again (I'm not a big fan of having lessons) because anything I want to learn how to do is right there in front of me, plain to see. Now all I need to do is practice. Thanks Kirk. "
~ Jaimie (PlaneTalkers' Forum)