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Machtkampf
post Mar 22 2012, 04:25 PM
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Hi I'm a new guy here. I came across this really interesting site and decided to give it a go. I've been having problems lately with my guitar learning, or at least I feel like I have no idea where I should go next. I've been playing awhile and I have taught myself everything I know, and I just feel like I am uncertain on what I'm doing lately. I think I need some direction on where to go from here. I am very dedicated to playing my guitar all day and night, but that's not going to be much help if I'm only travelling along a never-changing straight line. So I figured I would start a thread for myself to help out my guitar progression and maybe by some chance cover things that others may also wonder about but not even know what to ask.

So lemme start by asking what are some of the absolute fundamentals of increasing your progress on guitar? I already figured playing and playing and playing is a must, AND taking breaks to not strain or hurt myself and give my muscles time to rest (and build up strength?). I currently only practice a few things on guitar really and those are ....

  • Using those Right and Left hand warm up exercises from the "Rock Discipline" DVD
  • Playing 3 different scales over and over
  • Playing some chords that I also don't know the names of ....
  • Trying to practice parts of songs I never seem to finish....
  • Playing the simple 1-2-3-4 up and down the strings in different ways



Really from this point I seem pretty pathetic to myself. I feel I lack in things I know or understand maybe. I've basically only practiced in things that would increase my dexterity/strength/accuracy/Speed(although my speed is honestly lacking) and not learning a lot of things exactly. I guess I feel I can't/shouldn't learn any songs if I don't have the technique first.

What I would like to get out of all this

Speed and Accuracy (of course)
I would like to have a good routine for progression to increase my overall skill
Direction on where I should go/ what I should do
Learn anything and everything I can! I don't want to limit myself on just one thing or one idea. Everyone has input and I'm sure it will all be useful!

Well for now lets leave it at this and see where it goes!. Thanks ahead of time for any and all help! I do appreciate it. Also if there is anything I need to tell you guys as well to get a better understanding or put in something I may have left out lemme know. I'll check this post and update it regularly.

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dark dude
post Mar 22 2012, 04:49 PM
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Welcome, MK.

QUOTE
I've basically only practiced in things that would increase my dexterity/strength/accuracy/Speed(although my speed is honestly lacking) and not learning a lot of things exactly. I guess I feel I can't/shouldn't learn any songs if I don't have the technique first.

Can totally relate. When all you do is exercises, you just get obsessed with speed and accuracy, which won't help - your motivation will just plummet.

These days, I'll get as much enjoyment, if not more, from somebody playing a simple piece well, rather than it being fast and technical. Don't get me wrong, I still love the shred, but once you can find some riffs, licks, even songs that are satisfying to play (yet simple), you won't be in such a massive rush to get your technique up. I find blues rock / hard rock stuff is great for this. As far as speed goes, it's just a rat race in the end, there'll always be somebody out there who has practiced for longer with a metronome, who can play your licks cleaner, etc.

As for what to do:

* Post a video to show your playing. The instructors will be able to pick-up on areas of your technique that may be holding you back from playing more technical stuff, and they'll be able to suggest exercises/lessons to remedy that.

* Join one or more of the mentoring groups (have a look at Ben's, Cosmin's, Gabe's and Alex's boards for this) to have regular feedback on your playing.

* Perhaps join some collaborations to flex your improv. muscles a bit. Hopefully that will subdue the technique obsession and allow you to enjoy writing and recording something to a backing track. Unless you just want to end up playing covers? I don't know, some do.

* Join some guitar chats on GMC. Some are more often than not technique-based, so I'm sure you'll enjoy them. The next chat is on Friday, Gabe's chat. He's doing some technique stuff at the moment, but these things can be asked in any chat.

What bands are you into and what songs are troubling you technique-wise?

-Adam

This post has been edited by dark dude: Mar 22 2012, 04:52 PM


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Machtkampf
post Mar 22 2012, 05:27 PM
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Amazing. I see this is already heading in a great direction. Thanks for all of the in-depth ideas and tips. I shall try these out! Yes motivation can really hit rock bottom from time to time, but I try to push myself. I should also mention I'm not looking to be the fastest or anything ... I just start analyzing myself way too much and end up thinking I can't do it unless (insert amount of skill here).

I'll also try to post a video too. Is there any certain way I should go about a recording?

Yeah and the improv would be good too. I couldn't imagine enjoying myself only playing others work. I just use it to base ideas from.

Any suggestions yourself on blues/hard rock? maybe zz top or something?

Oh and some bands I really love are Arch Enemy / Megadeth / Sonata Arctica / Pantera / etc.

Right now I'm just having trouble with my speed and then acc. with Cowboys from hell and Master of Puppets.

Also as an added idea to my ability .. (well 2 or so years ago ... er 3 years or so ...) Me playing Nemesis by Arch Enemy (Michael's Part)
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dark dude
post Mar 22 2012, 06:30 PM
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I'm assuming you don't have an audio recording interface, so at this moment in time, a webcam or good quality camera video will do, whatever you can muster. Although, zoom out a bit more than in the AE video, it's hard to see your picking hand (fretting hand is fine). If you can, play with a metronome or minimal backing, as it's tough to hear your guitar.

For playing and enjoying the slower stuff, it has to be something that you, specifically, will enjoy. Heck, even picking up a pop punk song and bashing out some chords can be very rewarding. ZZ Top is an awesome choice, though. Have a good think, take a look at your mp3 library.

Two classic songs, heh? Again, you'd benefit from posting an attempted run-through of the songs, so that the weak points could be identified. It could be the type of picking (inside picking, outside picking), or perhaps string skipping or many other things that can be remedied with a combination of exercises and looking at your technique.

I'm sure some instructors will chime-in soon, but in the meantime, work on getting a more recent video up. Don't worry about how simple it is, or mistakes, just play as you usually would.


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Machtkampf
post Mar 22 2012, 07:16 PM
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Will do biggrin.gif
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Ben Higgins
post Mar 22 2012, 07:33 PM
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Hi MK, welcome to GMC smile.gif

QUOTE (Machtkampf @ Mar 22 2012, 04:27 PM) *
I just start analyzing myself way too much and end up thinking I can't do it unless (insert amount of skill here).


Absolutely my biggest problem. I'm sure a big amount of the guitarists here would share this problem too. I couldn't honestly tell you how many times I've undermined my own ability by questioning whether I'm doing something right, looking at other people's techniques, trying to read up on how they do it etc..

Every time I've felt like this, the time I always came back on track was when I accepted that there was no better way than my way. If it works for me then it works. Period.

Dark Dude's already chimed in with some solid advice. I'm always big on keeping the enjoyment factor in your practice. By that, I mean always follow the path that interests you most. Learn the techniques and songs that you're going to want to be playing, not learning something just because you think you should be able to do it. I'm a metal guy so I'm not going to spend my time learning jazzy chords that I'm never going to use or scales that just don't fit in with what I'm doing. It doesn't mean I won't change and do it in the future but if I do, then I'll learn it then - when I need to. So, first and foremost I always check that I'm catering to my tastes smile.gif

I checked out your vid and your alternate picking and down picking look pretty solid as they are, which is good. How's your hand synchronisation ? This is a very important aspect if you want to be able to pick your way through scalar runs and things.

As for repeating scales, I've never been in to that. It just teaches you how to play a scale up and down. If you'd like to learn a scale and incorporate it into your playing I suggest breaking it down to 3 note sequences and learning it on one string so you can get the actual sound of the scale in your head. You want to get to the point where you can pick any note of the scale and, without having to count frets or figure out where in the scale you are, instantly know how to fret the next interval in the scale... and the next and the next etc. So, what's ultimately happening is that you're being lead by the sound rather than having to visualise patterns so eventually your fingers will be able to take over on autopilot when it comes to scalar runs.

When you can do that on one string, start doing it on all strings, then try matching the horizontal patterns with the box positions. Eventually you'll be able to move around the box positions and extend them too with the linear patterns. I'd also recommend picking just one scale for a while, immerse yourself in it to really allow your brain time to digest it or you'll probably find it harder to learn several at once.

Whew, that was a lot of typing !! I'l take a break and let somebody else have a go for a while ! wink.gif

This post has been edited by Ben Higgins: Mar 22 2012, 07:36 PM


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Alex Feather
post Mar 22 2012, 08:08 PM
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QUOTE (Machtkampf @ Mar 22 2012, 03:25 PM) *
Hi I'm a new guy here. I came across this really interesting site and decided to give it a go. I've been having problems lately with my guitar learning, or at least I feel like I have no idea where I should go next. I've been playing awhile and I have taught myself everything I know, and I just feel like I am uncertain on what I'm doing lately. I think I need some direction on where to go from here. I am very dedicated to playing my guitar all day and night, but that's not going to be much help if I'm only travelling along a never-changing straight line. So I figured I would start a thread for myself to help out my guitar progression and maybe by some chance cover things that others may also wonder about but not even know what to ask.

So lemme start by asking what are some of the absolute fundamentals of increasing your progress on guitar? I already figured playing and playing and playing is a must, AND taking breaks to not strain or hurt myself and give my muscles time to rest (and build up strength?). I currently only practice a few things on guitar really and those are ....

  • Using those Right and Left hand warm up exercises from the "Rock Discipline" DVD
  • Playing 3 different scales over and over
  • Playing some chords that I also don't know the names of ....
  • Trying to practice parts of songs I never seem to finish....
  • Playing the simple 1-2-3-4 up and down the strings in different ways



Really from this point I seem pretty pathetic to myself. I feel I lack in things I know or understand maybe. I've basically only practiced in things that would increase my dexterity/strength/accuracy/Speed(although my speed is honestly lacking) and not learning a lot of things exactly. I guess I feel I can't/shouldn't learn any songs if I don't have the technique first.

What I would like to get out of all this

Speed and Accuracy (of course)
I would like to have a good routine for progression to increase my overall skill
Direction on where I should go/ what I should do
Learn anything and everything I can! I don't want to limit myself on just one thing or one idea. Everyone has input and I'm sure it will all be useful!

Well for now lets leave it at this and see where it goes!. Thanks ahead of time for any and all help! I do appreciate it. Also if there is anything I need to tell you guys as well to get a better understanding or put in something I may have left out lemme know. I'll check this post and update it regularly.

Hi! Welcome to GMC!
If you need help to figure out what to start with I just started mentoring students
You can sign up and I will guide you through and will give you assignments to study you can combine them with lessons and your progress will double! smile.gif
Here is the link to sign up! https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...showtopic=43564
Also if you have any questions you can just send me a PM and I will help you out!


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Todd Simpson
post Mar 22 2012, 11:48 PM
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Welcome to GMC smile.gif You are about to embark on a killer journey to finding the inner Rock God/Shredder lurking deep in your soul and this is just the place for it smile.gif

Jump in to some of the "collabs" collaboration projects where you play a solo over a backing and get feedback from an instructor.

Attend Video Chats! Talk live with instructors and students. The schedule is on the front page!

Dive in to the forums. A wealth of information, then you find the WIKI and your brain melts! It's amazing smile.gif

Todd


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