Fledgling Post Monkey
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Neither here, nor there
Total Points: 1,314.28
Calling all guitarists and people who just want to learn!
I was in another forum, and people were asking about playing guitar. I racked my brains, and remembered things i had read, and decided to give a really quick 'box o' tips'. So, at the risk of being locked, which even though I searched, is always a fear when posting a new thread, I've decided to open a thread dedicated to the sharing of tips from all of the guitar players on the forum. I think we have enough to make this a very helpful thread, not only to people who want to learn, but also for us who always like to hear new tips and tricks! i'll start with what I wrote in the forum:
1) Suck it up, and learn the boring stuff. Theory, scales, chords, it will help you immensely, let me repeat that, IMMENSELY in the end.
2) Never spend more than 2 hours on any one thing. Trying to learn a song, and you can't quite get it? Take a break, try later, or sleep on it. It helps.
3) Train your ear. The hardest part is trying to play the cool things in your head. This is also the hardest thing to learn. Ways to go about it: Play a note, then sing the note. Do this continuosly with an easy scale, until you can sing it, or hum it, just about perfect. You don't have to be able to sing either to do this. After you feel comfortable with that, play the note while singing it simultaneously. Try to hit the note the exact time you sing it. Harder than it seems. Next, Sing the note before you play it. After you can do this well, start finding random notes all around the fretboard. Play them, then sing them. When you can map the guitar out in your head, and match it to the sound you sing for it, you have developed a wonderful tool. No more struggling to play things on the radio, or in your head. If you can repeat it in your head, and hum the melody, you can undoubtedly play it.
4) When you can afford it, buy good equipment. This will help your ear as well. You don't want to play and practice with a bad tone, because that becomes what you expect to sound like.
5) Tune, tune, tune. I can't stress this enough. Play in tune. When you play with a guitar that isn't in tune, you develop an ear that isn't in tune.
6) Get a metronome. This will help with your timing, which is something almost all guitarists struggle with. This will help in your rythm department, and when it comes to leads, set the metronome slow, then play a scale. when you can play the scale at speed. set it faster. This will help your technique and your speed. Make sure you can play the scale perfect before you set it faster.
7) Learn songs. When you start to get really into playing, and you start writing your own songs,you tend to stop learning other songs. While this is good, when someone asks you to play a song, and you play one of your own, they tend to get a little confused. Learn popular or well known songs, and learn them all the way through. KNow the riff to Crazy Train? What about the verse and chorus parts? Learn it all. If you can't play the solo, skip it, or play your own. Remember, originality is what people like.
8..) Have fun. Sometimes you just have to put all the theory and scales away, and just play. When the guitar becomes a hassle to pick up, you know your doing something wrong. It's music, and your creativity can take it as far as you want to go!
Now, if anyone has any questions abou any of that, don't hesitate to ask, and for all you guitar players, what would you consider your best tips, tricks, and your favorite techniques?