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> What Level Am I?, Were do I stand in my level of guitar playing?
Brendan
post Nov 24 2007, 02:40 AM
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Help! I am a guitar player in need of some constructive critcizm. I am a little shakey on my chord progression. I can finger tap really well and I know my basic pentatonic scales. I can hit pinch harmonics, vibratos, hammer-ons, slurs and all that stuff all in 16th notes. I sound like a ruff cross version of Eddie Van Halen and Zakk Wylde. What level Am I?
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shellshock1911
post Nov 24 2007, 02:47 AM
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QUOTE (Brendan @ Nov 24 2007, 02:40 AM) *
Help! I am a guitar player in need of some constructive critcizm. I am a little shakey on my chord progression. I can finger tap really well and I know my basic pentatonic scales. I can hit pinch harmonics, vibratos, hammer-ons, slurs and all that stuff all in 16th notes. I sound like a ruff cross version of Eddie Van Halen and Zakk Wylde. What level Am I?


There are no levels in music. The guitar is so diverse that there is no way to measure how good someone so broadly. The most important thing in my opinion is knowledge of theory, technique, etc. How are you coming on those?


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Brendan
post Nov 24 2007, 02:58 AM
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QUOTE (shellshock1911 @ Nov 24 2007, 02:47 AM) *
There are no levels in music. The guitar is so diverse that there is no way to measure how good someone so broadly. The most important thing in my opinion is knowledge of theory, technique, etc. How are you coming on those?


Dude, thanks man. My talent, well I was going over some finger tapping techniques while I read your reply. My theory... well its a little shakey, I can read only the basic of sheet music:( but I can read tabs no problem:angry:
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shellshock1911
post Nov 24 2007, 03:34 AM
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QUOTE (Brendan @ Nov 24 2007, 02:58 AM) *
Dude, thanks man. My talent, well I was going over some finger tapping techniques while I read your reply. My theory... well its a little shakey, I can read only the basic of sheet music:( but I can read tabs no problem:angry:


Reading sheet music is extremely important, so if you are doing that, then you have made a lot of progress. 50% of sight reading though is rhythm, the other 50% is pitch notation. So make sure you practice all kinds of rhythms in 4/4, 6/8, 12/8, etc with a metronome. Most people learn the note values and think they are done with rhythm, but being able to look at a piece of music for the first play the rhythm by sight is truely an amazing feat in my opinion.

Make sure you learn chord construction as well, this is HUGE. Modes and scales can come later in my opinion but learning the way that chords are constructed will allow to you understand what fits good with what and why a good musician plays something a certain way. As far as scales go, I would highly recommend that you do not learn scale boxes. Some people think that is a good way to learn but it will have you stuck. The way I learned scales was, I just made up my own. Record a chord that is playing over and over, start on the root note of that chord, and just play random notes around it that you think sound good, and memorize it, and use those as your own "scales."

Memorizing the fretboard is also HUGE. Don't use Fretboard Warrior or other silly programs that have you memorize random notes. What they don't teach you is how each note relates to the other notes, which is truely what you should be after. Learn the warped W method if you haven't. It basically shows you how each note relates to other notes of the same pitch all around the fretboard. Do a warped W for one note everyday and before long you will understand the fretboard much better than those people who used programs.

Sorry if that was a lot, I just started on the reading music thing and kept going lol. But yea, if you like finger tapping, check out Symphony X. Michael Romeo resolves the misconception that anything with tapping is easy.

This post has been edited by shellshock1911: Nov 24 2007, 03:35 AM


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tonymiro
post Nov 24 2007, 12:08 PM
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I agree with the majority of what Shellshock says above.

The one difference I would have is that at some stage you will need to learn the conventional names for the scales and modes. Albeit I do agree that it is as important, perhaps more important, to be able to hear and understand the relationship between the notes in a scale and why they are the relative degree that they are.

The reason why I think knowing the terminology is important- interaction with other musicians requires some common language.

To use Allan Holdsworth as an example has his own system for notating scales and naming that he devised. However he refers to scales in standard language when he discusses what he plays. He knows what he means by 'I'm using the "D Triangle with a vertical slash in it" scale for the c/g polytonal chord' - but I don't wink.gif .

As to what level you are - take a look at the various graded courses that are around. There are now ones for rock guitar as well as classical. To me I would suggest that:

Grades 0-4 are basic (elementary school to High School 16 years old/ 'o' level)
Grades 5-7 are intermediate (upper high school/ 'A' level)
Grade 8 and beyond - advanced (University and beyond).

That by the way is for playing, technique, sight reading, composition and theory - if you want to be a rounded musician then you need to be equally strong in all areas.

Cheers,
Tony


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Ivan Milenkovic
post Nov 24 2007, 01:58 PM
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Music theory is a foundation of music. You have to know it. You don`t have to know everything BUT you are required to keep the basic knowlegde in your pinky finger. Learn the way major scales are being constructed to, and chords that are derived from that scales, and you will feel much more satisfied with your musical advancement. Andrew Cockburn`s theory lessons on this forum are great and you should find everything you need ti know about them there. Also you can ask anything you want to know and we will try our best to help you. Cheers smile.gif


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