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metalhed717

Anyone else have this happen to 'em?

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ive been playing guitar for two years now (thought it was three for a while but just realized). anyway i have a frien who's been playin for maybe a year, and he used to like almost worship me cause he thought i was so good (which i really wasnt). anyway, now he's playin stuff that i cant even play and that reall kinda makes you feel dissappointed, you know? i mean im happy for him and how easy he's found it to be, but it really kinda sucks for me. but also its kind of a blessing in disguise because im finding myself practicing more and trying things i usually wouldnt have taken on, so in a way he's making me a better (and more competitive) player. anyone else have this happen to them?

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I've been on the other side of that. I didn't start playing guitar until I was 16. Most of the guitar players I knew had been playing anywhere from 2 to 7 years by that point. I was far behind them in my development. But I stuck with it (most likely because I was a virgin until after graduation :-s ) and I ended up being the first guy in my crowd to land paying gigs in clubs.

 

Use your friend's advancement as a challenge to you to work on your chops...in a good way, like a friendly competition. And keep in mind, no matter how good he is, or how good you are, there's somebody out there who can reduce you to dust! Keeps you humble...

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No, I always play better and learn faster than everyone else.

NOT!

Of couse this happens to everybody. Except for that 1 in a million player.

Did you seriously think it only happened to you?

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I've been reduced to "dust" many times! Yet, all it really does, is motivate me...not to try to

reduce anyone else to dust (there's always going to be someone better, no matter what),

but to just be a better player, overall. You hear a lot of the chops of "Metal" gods, etc...but,

there are some serious Country pickers, that are absolutely awesome...Brad Paisley, to name

just one.

 

CB

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I have a friend who plays guitar. Only guy I know worse than me. No sense of timing whatsoever. Slows down for anything faster than an 1/8th note. No ear at all, he tunes to a pedal, then everybody tunes to him so we all sound the same. His improvs are sometimes in the wrong key. He knows it. He hasn't the least bit of talent anywhere in his body. He just loves music and wants to be involved. About once a month, he calls a bunch of guys to come over and jam. Not everybody shows, but enough friends. He plays 3 songs. Same songs, every time. Screws up in the same places each time. Says, "Damn! Nearly got it that time! I'll practice a little more next time." Then he stops playing, serves beer, food, empties ashtrays and just hangs on the edge of something he can see and never touch, while everybody else plays their butts off. Great guy. Always a good time. Do anything for any of his friends, and all his friends are in music, one way or another. What the heck? I'd play 3 songs for a friend anytime. Come on over, you can be better than me, anytime. At least once a month, if you bring a few friends that I can jam with.

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I have a friend who plays guitar. Only guy I know worse than me. No sense of timing whatsoever. Slows down for anything faster than an 1/8th note. No ear at all' date=' he tunes to a pedal, then everybody tunes to him so we all sound the same. His improvs are sometimes in the wrong key. He knows it. He hasn't the least bit of talent anywhere in his body. He just loves music and wants to be involved. About once a month, he calls a bunch of guys to come over and jam. Not everybody shows, but enough friends. He plays 3 songs. Same songs, every time. Screws up in the same places each time. Says, "Damn! Nearly got it that time! I'll practice a little more next time." Then he stops playing, serves beer, food, empties ashtrays and just hangs on the edge of something he can see and never touch, while everybody else plays their butts off. Great guy. Always a good time. Do anything for any of his friends, and all his friends are in music, one way or another. What the heck? I'd play 3 songs for a friend anytime. Come on over, you can be better than me, anytime. At least once a month, if you bring a few friends that I can jam with.[/quote']

 

That story really touched me for reasons close to my heart.

 

I'm a wannabe like your friend: always on the outside looking in 'cause I have absolutely no musical talen. However, I spend a lot of time with people who do play and in environments like this forum.

 

I always feel uncomfortable about being a bloody old groupie but nobody's ever made me feel that way, just the opposite actually.

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I think it's down to accepting that although there will always be players that are

better than you, that's no reason not to play and enjoy. If being the "best" was

a requirement, there would be only one guitar player.

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There are a few people that I know that are better players than me, but I'm more knowledgeable in theory, chords, tone, and gear (thanks guys). They don't know what they're playing (note wise), they can just play it and play it well.

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I've noticed that getting better on the guitar has some similarities to working out with weights and getting bigger. I cared more about having 'big' arms when I was in highschool, and like a lot of young guys at the time, I guess I'd look with envy at friends who gained size faster than me. But as we grew older, it became more obvious that you can only compete with yourself (if that makes sense). There were too many variables; Joe might gain a lot of muscle quickly over one summer, but they he'd plateau and generally just stay the same size. Little Fred was a slow gainer, but then at one point it was just really noticable that he was in great shape. Height, weight, proportions- all these things affected the success we had, working out. And everyone was different.

 

I thought about this when I was comparing my guitar skills to other friends' skills. We all know a guy who picks up things fast, or someone who who plays great but has trouble tuning, or has trouble with timing. I know someone who can play other people's songs by ear, but has no creativity himself. Another person is the opposite. One guy is a lightning fast shredder but has trouble picking up a tune by ear. You know what I mean? I like to think I have indentified my main weaknesses, and try to address them when practicing. But "playing" is the fun time- when I just play what I'm good at and enjoy. It's never a linear progression, either, with guitar. There are good days, bad days, plateaus (when it seems weeks pass and I don't get any better)...

 

Rambling on here. Later.

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I have helped introduce a number of people to guitar (taught them chords, songs, etc). Several of them got to be much better than me. It's a bit depressing, but in the end I guess they just "wanted it" more than me. I am one of those guys that has a wide range of musical likes and a pretty good ear, but just can't stay focused on learning theory or scales. I can learn and memorize fairly complex pieces, sometimes just by listening to them, and can improvise solos in my head, but can't play them "live" as I just have never internalized the fretboard. So it's my own fault. I still get excited when a friend says he's interested in guitar. He always gets one of mine on loan, and I will spend whatever time helping along until the day when he'll be better me.

 

I have a friend like Snookleputz' (that was indeed a touching story). Great guy, will play the one or two things he knows, without shame or embarrassment at the lack of skill, for whoever will listen. He will only play solo though, as he doesn't want to "ruin it" for the others. I know that feeling, and it can keep you from getting much better.

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I have two friends who are very good players, in their style. I don't play at all like them, so it's not as obvious how much better they are than me.

 

Of course, they also spent two years of high school living in China, so they spent a lot of time together, playing. They also picked up quite a few cheap guitars.

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With rare exception, if someone is getting better than you, it is because they are working their a** off.

 

Tennis is a lot like guitar. Everyone's working hard to get better, but in tennis the competition is real. With guitar, the competitive aspect is sublimated. In both cases, my tennis friends, and guitar friends, we are all supportive and are enjoying the journey.

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Actually apart from my half hour a week with a teacher I don't have anyone to play with and I think that is holding my development up a lot. Not easy to find the right person living in the country and at my age...maybe next time around?

 

Ideally having someone slightly better than you to play with would bring you up in leaps and bounds I suspect and I think I love my lessons largely because I get to play with someone else. As to other players being better that me, everyone is better than me but I don't care because I love it .

 

Gimme that guitar ~

 

Dig

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Ideally having someone slightly better than you to play with would bring you up in leaps and bounds I suspect and I think I love my lessons largely because I get to play with someone else.

 

I agree, Dig.

 

My playing level is almost non-existent but I do find, on the rare occasion that I get a chance, that when I play with someone else, even if it's just chordless strumming, I get into a rhythm, an almost meditative state. I come away feeling that's perhaps there is a spark there and one day I might be able to play.

 

When I look at the teenagers in my area they jam with each regularly and perhaps this is a major part, way better than lessons and lone practice, of the reason they develop reasonably quickly. (I'm not dismissing the learning advantages that I naturally believe teens have in comparison to 'oldies'.)

 

Ron ...

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Wow, in last several posts I see a repeated point that I agree with 100%. Playing with other people really helps! That is my main weakness, I guess.

 

And does anyone else notice that playing alone and/or practicing, we tend to stop a song when we make a mistake? This is not an option when you're chugging along with two or more people. You have to learn to gloss over it and keep going with the minimum of fuss. I have to keep reminding myself to do this when playing alone (which is 99% of the time, sadly). Making mistakes as seamless as possible is a skill in itself, I suppose.

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Ive been playing for about 2 years now and my jam mate for about 3-4. He pulls out the big solos and im like wow! Dont think he plays a whole song tho! (I can play Layla electric version start to finish now without solo so with rhythem too) I know its not the hardest song but i stuck with it and nailed the whole thing. Thats the plan for two other songs im learning, "You really got me" & "Sweet child of mine" Other than learning these i am making my own riffs and small licks. He wants us to make up our own stuff now which im down for just he knows nothing about music theory. Doesnt even know one scale #-o

 

I'll play a little lick which may be slower than his solo's but still nice and he's like whats that from? I always say just made it up from playing around the A minor pentatonic and he says whats that :-

 

 

Oh well were each better at different things i suppose

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Think about how Dicky Betts must have felt. He wrote the song In Memory of Elizabeth Reed but had to stand there in awe when Duane Allman came to his solo on it.

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Think about how Dicky Betts must have felt. He wrote the song In Memory of Elizabeth Reed but had to stand there in awe when Duane Allman came to his solo on it.

 

Thank you' date=' but no thank you! I prefer to think how [u']I [/u] would have played it.

 

Edit: At least it sounds good in my head!

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Most of the good players spend a lot of time practicing at home. There's talent and there's sweat equity. Both go together and eventually the talented ones will win out, but there are a lot of guitar players who eventually overcame timing issues and tin ears to finally "get it."

 

There's a 16 year old in our praise band who's been playing for about three years. According to his mother, she sometimes has to threaten him to turn off the amp and come to supper. She says that he would rather starve than stop playing to eat.

 

He will be a great axe man one day. He is already beyond his years in terms of knowledge and chops. The key is perserverance. Practice those scales, rip off the licks from tabs and learn to play everything you get your hands on. It will all come together and the licks you learn will result in new variations that you can use as "your own.

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"talent & sweat equity". Damn good quote, Dave. Everybody has a different level of talent. My brother, for instance, has more talent in his little finger than I do in my whole body but he's lazy. Hence, he's never been as good as I am. However, I worked my butt off when I was coming up (35-40 hours a week for years and years) and never rose above the level of 'garden variety bar band lead player'. People with tons of talent who are willing to work their butts off will achieve great things. People with a little bit of talent who work their butts off end up like me. People with lots of talent who don't work much end up like my brother. People with little talent who don't work much end up selling their guitars on ebay.

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Some of the many people who irritate me (it's an age thing) are the ones who come up to you after a gig and say "I always wanted to learn to play guitar". The reason they haven't done it is plainly that they didn't want it that bad.

 

I started off at 15 with no ear, no musical training, no support from parents. I practised around 2 hours a day for 2 years until I was good enough to get through an audition for a pub band. My school work definitely suffered but I was determined to get the hang of it. I tell people that anyone can become a competent guitarist if they want to - they just have to be willing to spend the hours working at it.

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Wow' date=' in last several posts I see a repeated point that I agree with 100%. Playing with other people really helps! That is my main weakness, I guess.

 

And does anyone else notice that playing alone and/or practicing, we tend to stop a song when we make a mistake? This is not an option when you're chugging along with two or more people. You have to learn to gloss over it and keep going with the minimum of fuss. I have to keep reminding myself to do this when playing alone (which is 99% of the time, sadly). Making mistakes as seamless as possible is a skill in itself, I suppose. [/quote']

 

+10. It's pretty hard to do this when you just play by yourself. Have you ever seen someone (or been the guy) playing casually and every time he makes a mistake he says "No, wait" and starts over or back at the beginning of the section? I found it pretty hard to get past that (I still do it sometimes). I also play by myself 99% of the time. I find it useful to play along with the song or chord progression, standing far away from the pause button. I'm to the point where now when I make a mistake I'll just swear and slam the current chord, then keep going. :)

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