You are more likely to succeed if you have a goal! Make Rock School your goal!
One thing really important about this exam is to understand when and from which grade you will start. If you have just received you Electric Guitar and you have never played before I would say you probably want start Rock School after about one or two months. This is a fairly challenging and practical exam and require a bit of knowledge before you get into it. You must be able to use the pick and know the basic things about reading tabs and rhythm. Start this exam too soon and you will thrown off by its difficulty. On the other hand, if you have been playing for more than three months you can easily start from grade one.
Rock School for Intermediate-Advanced
If you have been playing for years, this exam will blow your mind! From grade 5 the songs are really challenging and the amount of techniques involved are impressive. You must know how to use amps and effect as some pieces require different tones. The backing tracks are a valuable asset that will make you improve you timing, accuracy and groove.
Usually you will be taking two exams a year depending on how many hours you practice. Overall this is a quite enjoyable experience and I look forward starting this exam either if you are a beginner or advanced.
What I need?
Rock School is an exam for Electric Guitar. Some students tough take grade 1 and 2 with the acoustic guitar. I am ok with that, just bear in mind that from grade 3 it will be quite difficult to keep going with the acoustic guitar. Techniques as bending, power chords and soloing are mainly played on the electric guitar and you will find plenty of that stuff from grade 3.
You will need two things. An Electric Guitar and a Guitar amp. Rock School is a rock exam so you must have an guitar amp that allows you to change sound. There are usually three stages of sound that your amp must be able to generate.
- Clean sound
- Distortion sound
The Clean sound is the plain sound coming from your guitar. You can achieve that by keeping the gain down and the volume up. Make sure the volume on your guitar in at 8-10. The Overdrive sound is a combination of volume and gain. You can achieve that by placing the gain knob around 5 (twelve o’clock if you don’t have numbers). When you increase the gain the volume will go up. If it’s too loud, put the volume down on your amp. Keep the volume of your guitar around 8-10. The Distorted sound is 80% gain and 20% volume. With the gain up to 8 (five o’clock if you don’t have numbers) the amp will be screaming! Your neighbor will come knocking at your door. Make sure you adjust the volume using the volume knob on your amp.
The Backing Track is a real benefit. With Rock School you are not preparing an exam, you are preparing a performance!
The Backing track will help you to improve your:
Rock School vs Hot Rock
In order to pass the exam you will have to prepare three pieces and perform them with the backing track. You can choose from:
- Rock School book: In this book you will find the pieces that Rock School designed for the exams. These are original songs. It is compulsory to prepare at least one song from this book. You can prepare up to three songs from this book.
- Hot Rock book: They had a amazing idea! What if the students can prepare some famous rock songs and perform them with the backing track? You can pick up up to two songs from this book. Cool stuff like Metallica, ACDC, Joe Satriani, Brian Adams, Bonjovi, Red Hot, Clapton, Snow Patrol and more!
- Songs not from the books: Rock School also allows you to choose a song not from the book. However, they require that the songs needs to have enough contents: A rhythm section, solo and single note riff. You will also have to provide a backing track in Mp3. To be honest, with all the material you have in Rock School and Hot Rock books, this option is usually useless.
If you think that the exam is just about performing the three pieces, you are wrong. At the end of the Rock School book you will find a bunch of extra practical tests. This exercises cover some of the most important area of your playing. You will have to prepare:
- The Riff
- Sight Reading
- Improvisation and Interpretation
- Rhythmic Recall
- General Musicianship Questions
These are valuable exercise that will help you learning all the basic stuff that a guitar player should know. Quite often people focus just on playing and forget about basics. Everything is important in your playing!
Integrate your Rock School exams with Electric Guitar Lesson. Best combination in which you can Basics, Technique and Reading are put it into practicing by preparing this killing exams. Trust me, it works.
Prepare your Rock School Guitar Exams Grade 1-8 with Marco Cirillo !!! Rock School is the Rock and Pop Guitar Exam for Beginners, Intermediate and Advanced Guitar Players. Rock School is about the Style of Music you Love !!
- Rock School Grade 2
- Rock School Grade 3
- Rock School Grade 4
- Rock School Grade 5
- Rock School Grade 6
- Rock School Grade 7
- Rock School Grade 8