Jump to content
Gibson Brands Forums

Evolution of a Guitarist


Rabs

Recommended Posts

So ive been thinking about this recently.. It seems that most of us go through the same sort of thing when trying to learn how to play.. And some of the reasons I think that is are

 

1, When we first want to learn we have no idea about what equipment we want and even if we buy the best you can get, usually you cant appreciate it yet (or use it properly).

 

2, As we grow and learn, what we like constantly changes so even if we had a good ear to start with, chances are your tastes will change and your equipment needs will change with it. Like when you really start to hear the differences in tone on distortions and pickups etc that you just didnt hear previously.

 

3, Once we have explored the options we can (or what you can be bothered too :)), in the end we realise that we like what we like and that what really mattered was the journey we took as learning tool to get where we are today so was necessary. And even if people say they dont like what you do, you now have the experience and confidence to say, thats ok we are all different and just work on your own style and sound.

 

 

I know its all a bit obvious.. But why am I saying it.. Well really just to see if that is the sort of experience that most of us go through as a lot of the questions on here are from people new to Gibsons and even guitars in general and I think its good for them to know we all go through it. I remember what it was like to learn before the days of the Internet. In some ways it was easier as you didnt have all these opinions thrown at you, but the resources were more limited to friends and magazines.

 

So the point really is that as much as I hope we can be of help to the people new to this and have fun discussing our views with each other, I think we all have to realise that even though our journeys may be similar they are all very individual too depending on your lifestyle and circumstances. So as much fun as it is, the amp/guitar/tone disscussions are sort of pointless and shouldnt be taken too seriously.

 

Maybe some of our older players can chime in if theres any further stages that are things you have noticed that you just kind of have to go through in this sort of learning process.. And im talking about generally as above (which does seem the case for alot of people even though theres always exceptions :))

 

In the end I reckon that its also good to have the attitude that with music, and as long as you want too, you can learn for your whole life and probably still never know or master everything there is, which is kind of comforting and annoying at the same time :)

 

DSC0123.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah Rabs. A couple more things -

 

1....Your taste changes. At some point I realised a guitar didn't have to sound like a buzz-saw for me to like it or 'hear' it. When Jimi died I had to look elsewhere for whatever it (still) is and my personal journey was into all forms of jazz and instrumental music. Of course you never lose your biggest, earliest influences.

 

2...Technology and trends. It's still metal strings (mostly) exciting a magnet and going through a wire, maybe some boxes, to an amplifier then a speaker. But things have changed for the better in almost every aspect; sure you'll pay for it but the technology and R&D is incredible. Guitar synth was once thought totally impossible but I just bought the new Mclaughlin CD and his Godin guitar-to-synth...perfect.

And trends. You had to have a phaser in the 70s, a chorus in the 80s - you know? Nowadays it's a looper.

 

Good post. Best wishes!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah Rabs. A couple more things -

 

1....Your taste changes. At some point I realised a guitar didn't have to sound like a buzz-saw for me to like it or 'hear' it. When Jimi died I had to look elsewhere for whatever it (still) is and my personal journey was into all forms of jazz and instrumental music. Of course you never lose your biggest, earliest influences.

 

2...Technology and trends. It's still metal strings (mostly) exciting a magnet and going through a wire, maybe some boxes, to an amplifier then a speaker. But things have changed for the better in almost every aspect; sure you'll pay for it but the technology and R&D is incredible. Guitar synth was once thought totally impossible but I just bought the new Mclaughlin CD and his Godin guitar-to-synth...perfect.

And trends. You had to have a phaser in the 70s, a chorus in the 80s - you know? Nowadays it's a looper.

 

Good post. Best wishes!

Yeah your totally right about the new tech coming in.. I was around for the first lot of digital effects when they came out (some time in the 90s I think). Like the first zoom pedals and the first Line 6 amps and they were pretty bad.. Nowdays things have way moved on..

 

And yes I have a looper pedal :) (and its awesome)..

 

And I have a Boss Mini 4 Track digital recorder which was life changing for my recording. [thumbup]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah, I like this post, too.

 

I realized that once I got into middle age that I no longer needed, or wanted, to know all of the music that was out there. For most all my younger years, I prided myself on being open to all music and really couldn't get enough new music. As I get older, I realize there was still a lot of great music that I missed growing up, and my tastes are gravitating back to older music (and I don't mean classic rock), more sophisticated music, and musicians closer to my own age or older.

 

I am also kicking myself for not staying serious about guitar playing and improving through all of those years.

 

Now. Get off my lawn!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I dunno...

 

I think personally that one of the more stupid things you can do - and yup, I speak from experience - is the bit where you are influenced by looks and other folks commentary that "You can't do that with that guitar/amp, whatever."

 

I swapped myself out of a lotta nice pieces over the years that were horizontal or even downward (loss) swaps because of that factor.

 

Also, I think in one's youth "power" is probably overemphasized over almost anything else. That seems to be as true of the bluegrass pure acoustic player or the rocker, the jazz player and - yup, even the classical picker.

 

I find it interesting how in middle age and beyond, "we" tend do do more the music that has been in us all our lives and the specific equipment is generally far less important. If "we" just play in a group for ourselves or perhaps benefits or whatever, it might be time to start to realize that blend beats power any time. That's true too if you're doing solo or small group stuff for money. Unless you're doing "power band" rock that is better suited to kid players for kid listeners...

 

Even "power" is pretty stupid, IMHO, if you're not getting that "power blend" out to the crowd. Spend all you want on equipment, but if you have a loudness contest on stage as opposed to a loud blasting rock sound for the audience, you have failed. Period.

 

All of that said, after attempting in my youth to play Mother Maybelle's old archtop with its piano wire strings, I'll add that we will still have certain habits also from our youthful playing. I doubt that with her technique she'd be all that happy with the strings I wear on any of my guitars.

 

So... as a solo, be yourself; as a group, think "blend." As an equipment buyer think what will do best with your goals as a musician...

 

Yet, old as I am... sheesh, some day I'd still like to put on the tight black T with ciggies rolled in the sleeve, get the old SG, the big old power amp, and blast "Rumble" as loud as she goes. I figure I'm old; ain't dead yet.

 

m

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There's milestone's in playing, too. When you learn the basics you learn all the songs you've wanted to know that use the basics (assuming the player is interested in learning songs written by other people). Then you gets some more advanced chops and learn the more advanced tunes and so on. Before you know it you've learned all the songs you "Wanted" learn in your youth and have to start searching for stuff to learn.

 

Same goes for writing, you write the simple songs, and as your techniques grow you songwriting will reflect it. Which isn't to say you have to write difficult songs because you can play difficult songs.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Good discussion..

 

from the pov of a teacher, we can see that for a totally new student, it's like trying to take a sip of water thru a fire hose. There is so much to learn.

 

The music, the theory,the instruments and associated gear.

 

But you have to start somewhere.

 

And you would think knowing clearly what your goals are today is good, in reality this is probably not where you're gonna be in a year and hence the evolution that I think Rab's is mentioning. I think it's entirely a one step at a time process that requires patience and determination.

 

There's so many sources of influence, and it can be a distractor factor for starting out players.

 

With gear, and instruments just look at a sweetwater or musicians friend catalog. My GOD, Where do you begin? There's a bazillion different variations on the same theme.

How many "les pauls" does the world need. Standard, Stuido, Custom... enough?

 

it was way less complicated when I bought my first Tele in 1970... you had the color, and the choice of rose wood or maple fret board. Same with my first strat, and my first les paul (I'll take the gold top please). so pick one, buy it, yer done. Go home and play it. Amplifiers from the 70s, not a lot of variations, most didn't have master volumes,... find one you can afford, bring it home..

 

today, page after page of stuff to go thru... and we haven't even learned how to play a proper F chord..

 

For the music itself, there's at least some good news, the internet has literally revolutionized a lot of the learning.

 

Raise your hand if you thought the little lift arms on turn tables were the best thing since the refrigerator, then all you had to do was replace the albums you were trying to steal the licks off a few times before you got thru everything you wanted to learn because even with that, you were going to kill that album requeing the needle arm. Now, just fire up the PC, do a few searches on Youtube, and it's probably there some where, in extreme detail.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...