Talk about anything and everything related to Yousician Guitar here
By CReardon
I started using Yousician in December having never used a guitar before. I've managed to get to level 5 and have achieved 5 gold stars in each of the previous lessons (after MANY attempts!). However, the skill test for level 5 - Bach's Bourree - has left me flapping all over the fret board & strings. It feels like I've gone from learning how to ride a bike to being put in control of a jet fighter! I've been using a pick/plectrum but on watching a Youtube clip of someone playing Bourree properly they use finger picking. Is this the correct way to do it?

Any thoughts please on how I can better attack Bourree? It's so frustrating having got this far to now feel like I've run into a brick wall!
By ylly
That is a great song, not easy maybe but still great.

When mastering the skill you will hit a wall from time to time, it is not the end of the world.
It merely means you have to go back to earlier missions and play those again, improve your skills.
Can you still perform a full song gold starred when going back the missions you already covered?

The way I play it, and I am not sure it is the right way but try keeping your fingers one finger per fret, all the time.
Move one fret when the 5 is involved, move back when you need the 1.
At some point you will find you can focus more on what string you need to be on than on what fret you need to be on because you just know where your fingers are. Walk the strings like a spider.
By distanceremovedradio
hi CReardon! Well done on getting to the level 5 boss :)

Firstly, to reassure you, I refreshed myself by looking at that piece, level 5 skill test 'Bach's Bourree', and you could definitely play that with fingerpicking OR using a plectrum. I would urge you to practice both. When I started I only used fingerpicking exclusively, and now I wish I had started with a plectrum earlier so that I would have had longer to develop my picking skills now.

As for the song, there are some advantages to the way it is written that might help to get up to speed with it.

Firstly, as everyone will recommend, definitely slow it right down and play it through as slowly as you need to quite a few times just making sure you are able to sound each note.

An important thing to notice in this song is that the majority if not all of the song is made up of notes from frets 1-5. This may not seem important, but when you look more closely, you only have to finger a couple of notes on fret 1 in the whole song. This means that nearly always, the bottom fret that you will be using is fret 2 (except of course when you play an open string.)

Similar to what ylly has said, because the lowest fret used is nearly always fret 2 (except for like, two notes that are on fret 1) it gives you some options on what positioning to use. It is a preference thing, and I personally find I prefer using second position, (ie. your first finger on fret 2, your second finger on fret 3, your third finger on fret 4, your fourth finger on fret 5). Alternatively as ylly uses, you can use first position, and slide your pinky down a fret to play notes on fret 5.

If you do try second position, as the song is conveniently written like this, for almost all of the song you will not need to move your fretting hand too much at all except to move your index finger back a couple of times from fret 2 to fret 1 to play just a couple of notes.

The main disadvantage of using second position at first, is that you may find it a bit confusing, starting out. It can be confusing at first, because the song will say 2 (fret 2) but you will be using your first finger to play fret 2, or the song will say '4' for example, but you will be using your third finger to play fret 4, and so on. Using different 'positions' is something that you need to get used to though, (resting your index finger on a different fret than fret 1 as the starting position). I guess there are advantages and disadvantages to using both first or second position in this song. What you should definitely do, is practice trying both!

You may have been finding it even more difficult up until now, trying to play each fret as per first position up to fret 4, and then when there is a note on fret 5, you have to move your whole hand, and it could be throwing your rhythm and your hand out a little. After a while, you will get used to just sliding the pinky down and then making sure you are back to your original position for the next notes.

I played it through a couple of times in second position and I found it made a difference. I'm no expert myself unfortunately, so maybe a couple of the advanced players here could give you more in depth advice, but I'd advise you to give that a try.

If you did want a further guide I could always try and post a video just to give you an idea of how I would go about tackling it, but like I say, I'm no expert, so be warned :D I hope you manage to get it down! Best of luck :) And as always, remember to slow things right down in practice mode :)
Last edited by distanceremovedradio on Mon Feb 15, 2016 1:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
By JamesNeilson
@CReardon - well done on getting there, that's really fast progress! :-)

The others have given excellent advice, great points about using one finger per fret and slowing down. If you'd like some general tips I wrote a knowledgebase article on just this topic, hope it's useful: ... ctice-tips

Please do let us know how you go! :D
By rabatavus
As said, you either keep your index finger on the 2nd fret, and stretch it to fret the 1st string on the rare occasions where needed, or change your whole hand position (you either cover frets 1/2/3/4 or frets 2/3/4/5)

Here the index is on the 2nd fret

Here index on 1st fret

Index on 2nd fret( it happens automatically when you go for that 5th fret with the pinkie)

1st Fret

2nd Fret

It worked for me
Good luck!
By CReardon
Thanks for all the feedback and encouragement! I'll give the suggestions a go.

Off to see Paul Carrack in concert tonight and I'll watch the guitarists with renewed awe!
By rogue_code
CReardon wrote: I've been using a pick/plectrum but on watching a Youtube clip of someone playing Bourree properly they use finger picking. Is this the correct way to do it?
You have probably seen other arrangements of the song. The classical guitar (original? based on the original lute version?) versions tend to play both the voices, the lead melody (which is more or less the same as in Yousician's version) and the bass counterpoint (I hope the gods of music theory won't strike down with lightning for using the term counterpoint wrong...).

I think this is the version I like to play: (I hope there are no copyright issues with providing that link - I mean, Bach's been dead for a while...)
By JamesNeilson
Yes I love the original version too, I'll add that to our list of classical arrangements to make... :-)

@CReardon I forgot to say I really like your analogy of being put in control of a jet fighter - imagine how good it'll feel when you can fly that jet like it's nothing!! :D
By jshak180
I reached this song last week and spent a couple hours, finally got 3 gold stars. Just in individual sections so far, hoping for a full perfect run through.

I always try new songs at full speed and my first run on this I don't know if i hit 10 notes. I felt almost overwhelmed at how hard it was. Moving fast, multiple positions.

Took it at 50% - 85% speed, practiced over and over for days, played individual parts, paused on runs that needed extra work and last night I golded the middle section. Sitting by myself in the living room at 11pm. I could have cried.

On to the next Next challenge!
By woodworm107
I’m at the same place with this level 5 skill test. I can’t get any faster than 83% speed and I’ve spent a long time at it.
This blocker is my main grievance with Yousician. It seems to me that Yousician seems to focus on speed so if you’re not shredding then you’re not playing. Consequently this Bourree piece is blocking me from learning new skills. And for this reason alone I wouldn’t recommend Yousician to any budding player

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