Becoming a better guitarist?
Posted 01 August 2013 - 12:51 PM
So I first learned to play guitar my freshman year in highschool. I took a guitar class, and boy was it a joke. I learned a few chords and some techniques but nothing really impressive. For about a year and a half after the class, i don't think i picked up my guitar once. Then I went to my first concert (Coheed and Cambria) and was blown away by both Claudio and Travis's skill on the guitar. So since then I have been teaching my self how to play. I know lots of chords, can play a lot of intros of songs, and can even play a few songs. I know techniques like bends, hammer ons and pulloffs, slides, palm muting, etc... But even with all that I feel like i really still cant play guitar. I can play the riffs that i have learned and thats it. but I can't pick up my guitar and make things up that flow or anything.
So thats where i am now, what should I be practicing so I really improve? Right now I just look up tabs for certain riffs in songs that i like and learn them but I don't feel that's making me a better guitarist.
Posted 01 August 2013 - 02:54 PM
Posted 01 August 2013 - 07:11 PM
Posted 02 August 2013 - 01:35 PM
Posted 07 August 2013 - 09:05 AM
Great social life, contacts to join bands, free tuition from friendly musicians
Alone or with friends...musicians or otherwise...
Life will never be the same again...
Lower and Warmer....
I like kayaking....it really floats my boat....
I dig most stuff....
Posted 04 September 2013 - 08:29 PM
I started playing guitar roughly 10 years ago, inspired by seeing Pop/Punk trio Green Day live in concert.
I remember I bought a Blue Fender Stratocaster just like Billie Joe Armstrong would play (or I thought at the time).
Well after a few years of learning songs from guitar tabs online, I decided to enroll in the "advanced guitar class" at my high school. I found out quickly that the teacher had no knowledge of how to play the guitar and pretty much took the class as a time filler inbetween her Choir classes. She literally went into her office and did nothing the entire period. I stuck it out, only cause I could not change my schedule.
After that experience, I decided to go back and learn my scales. I had prior knowledge of a little bit of music theory from being in the middle school band as a xylophone player/bass drummer. It was a little easier for me since I knew how to read music.
But anyways, I started learning my scales (Major, Minor, Pentatonic, Blues, Harmonic, etc) and that greatly improved my playing. I also picked up a few exercise books at the local music store and played them religiously.
I'd recommend learning (at least) your basic scales (Major, Minor, Blues, and Pentatonic) and practicing exercises daily. It couldn't hurt at least.
Posted 20 September 2013 - 10:07 AM
Posted 23 October 2013 - 05:43 AM
There is another school of thought and that is to learn by playing first and then the scales, theory, modes, et al.......will follow.
It has it's proponents and is valid.
I am adding a reply that I posted in a Jazz forum that you might find interesting.
I know it works.....former student of Conti's here!
If you want to learn to play Jazz, then I would check out Robert Conti.
I took a few lessons from him years ago when he was just getting started professionally.
I never kept up due to lifestyle changes, the war, etc.....(Vietnam era)
Recently found out that Conti has been playing and teaching for over 40 years now !!!!
He has developed the teaching into quite a large offering.....and dedicated following.
He teaches PLAYING, not all the theory and stuff.....that follows once you can play.
He has a few free lessons online to help you find out where you are.......
See RobertConti.com or some stuff and reviews in Just Jazz Guitar magazine online.
Great stuff and highly recommended way to get you PLAYING.
(also many REAL testimonials there......not some phony comments)
There are a few free lessons posted there so you can see how it works and if it's for you.
Posted 03 January 2014 - 09:07 AM
So spend some time alone and with other players, or else you will turn into a mad man...solitary confinement with a guitar can be a bad thing.
Posted 28 January 2014 - 03:25 PM
Posted 14 February 2014 - 09:19 PM
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My Gibson Guitars
Posted 23 March 2014 - 06:22 PM
Posted 24 May 2014 - 07:02 PM
Posted 25 September 2014 - 08:41 AM
Posted 17 October 2014 - 06:15 PM
Been there, done that. I got so frustrated that I spent many years away from my guitars... something I dearly regret now.
This is a key that can unlock many doors. Do it enough and "muscle memory" will take a load off your brain.
I have a nephew whose instructor had all of his students perform in a band made up of other students. It makes a big positive difference in the learning environment.
Listen to types of music other than those you like. Jazz, Classical, Flamenco, Country, Big Bands & Rock, etc., are more than just "styles" of music. This will help train your ear to listen for what works for you.
Believe it or not, the thing that helped me the most in coming up with original music... was to spend a lot of time not listening! In the car, at home, wherever... your head will come up its own melodies if it is not so full of everyone else's. This, being contradictory to the last bit of advice, means you must find that balance.
Most of all, music should be liberating. Take time every day to practice and change it up from one to the next. It takes work but you can get much more out of it than sore fingers! If its worth doing, its worth doing right. Every reply to this post has had good advice. I hope my little bit helps.
Posted 23 October 2014 - 11:33 AM
"If you get confused, listen to the music play."
The best attribute ANY player can have IMO is great ears and a willingness to listen. I would support those that suggest playing with others is a huge key. Learning when not to play, how to syncopate with other musicians and instruments, and learning the non verbal communication that takes place in an ensemble are of utter importance.
I've always said that any tool can learn where to fret with the left hand, but "playing" is done with the right. Swing, feel, timing, attack, taste are all derived from right hand technique.
I'm a huge fan of "fakebooks." Those music books that notate the melody line and simply give you the open chord form for each bar are wonderful tools for learning the general composition and constructs of any song. Add to that some very basic alternate chord voices (in the case of a G chord - your open G, E form Bar on 3rd fret, D form on the 7th fret, and A form on the 10th fret etc.) and listen listen listen. Most licks come off those very basic chord forms, and putting them in your back pocket will be of great value.
I'm a self taught player, so my language might be completely nonsensical. Forgive me if that's the case.
Hope that helps!
Posted 10 November 2014 - 10:13 AM
The other thing I think you'll end up wanting is knowing the fretboard. This is not easy for me and I always avoided it. One of the other posts talked about Henry Morgan who has a video Fretboard Breakthrough on Truefire.com. You can sign up for 30 days for free and see what you like before you order. Like someone mentioned do not get overwhelmed,have a simple plan/goal and be a bit regimented.