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Thread: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

  1. #21
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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Well, good news!


    You know a lot more scales than you think. If you can play the E minor pentatonic scale in open position, then you can play it at the 12th fret. If you can play it at the 12th fret you can move the whole pattern up or down a few frets to play in other keys. (Up three frets is G min pentatonic, down two frets D min pentatonic, etc.) So you actually know all of the minor pentatonic scales. But there's even more good news . . . you also know the notes of all of the major pentatonic scales too! E min = G maj. A min = C maj. D min = F maj, etc.

    The same holds true with your major/minor scales. The G major (Ionian) scale is also the E minor (Aeolian) scale. Now for something even cooler . . . modal theory! G major is also A Dorian, B Phrygian, C Lydian, D Mixolydian, and F# Locrian! To get the particular sound of a mode you would target certain notes in the scale while playing over a certain chord. So if you take your G major scale and play it over a G major chord, paying the most attention to the root (G), 3rd (B), and 5th (D) of the chord you'll get a happy, major sound. If you take your G major scale and play it over an E minor chord, paying the most attention to the root E, b3rd (G), b7th (D), and maybe the b6th (C) you'll hear a sad, minor sound. If you take your G major scale and play it over an Amin6 (or even just an A minor), paying attention to the root (A), b3rd (C), b7th (G), and the 6th (F#) you'll hear the dorian mode . . . minor, with a major 6th. Etc.

    You have most of the theory building blocks you need now to play just about anything. Which can be kinda overwhelming. I'd suggest you start by simplifying. Learn to see arpeggio shapes on the fretboard, then start improvising using only the notes of the chords that are playing in the background. When you start to get a handle on this, then you start adding in additional notes one at a time to avoid being overwhelmed. Before you know it, you're using theory all the time without really having to think about it.
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    This planet has - or rather had - a problem, which was this: most of the people living on it were unhappy for pretty much of the time. Many solutions were suggested for this problem, but most of these were largely concerned with the movements of small green pieces of paper, which is odd because on the whole it wasn't the small green pieces of paper that were unhappy.

  2. #22
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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Quote Originally Posted by GuitarStv View Post
    Well, good news!


    You know a lot more scales than you think. If you can play the E minor pentatonic scale in open position, then you can play it at the 12th fret. If you can play it at the 12th fret you can move the whole pattern up or down a few frets to play in other keys. (Up three frets is G min pentatonic, down two frets D min pentatonic, etc.) So you actually know all of the minor pentatonic scales. But there's even more good news . . . you also know the notes of all of the major pentatonic scales too! E min = G maj. A min = C maj. D min = F maj, etc.

    The same holds true with your major/minor scales. The G major (Ionian) scale is also the E minor (Aeolian) scale. Now for something even cooler . . . modal theory! G major is also A Dorian, B Phrygian, C Lydian, D Mixolydian, and F# Locrian! To get the particular sound of a mode you would target certain notes in the scale while playing over a certain chord. So if you take your G major scale and play it over a G major chord, paying the most attention to the root (G), 3rd (B), and 5th (D) of the chord you'll get a happy, major sound. If you take your G major scale and play it over an E minor chord, paying the most attention to the root E, b3rd (G), b7th (D), and maybe the b6th (C) you'll hear a sad, minor sound. If you take your G major scale and play it over an Amin6 (or even just an A minor), paying attention to the root (A), b3rd (C), b7th (G), and the 6th (F#) you'll hear the dorian mode . . . minor, with a major 6th. Etc.

    You have most of the theory building blocks you need now to play just about anything. Which can be kinda overwhelming. I'd suggest you start by simplifying. Learn to see arpeggio shapes on the fretboard, then start improvising using only the notes of the chords that are playing in the background. When you start to get a handle on this, then you start adding in additional notes one at a time to avoid being overwhelmed. Before you know it, you're using theory all the time without really having to think about it.
    Just reading that was overwhelming but I get what you're saying haha. I need to study up on my theory.

  3. #23
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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Just an update:
    I've been taking everyones advice and practicing a bunch. I think I am getting there. Sounds better to me at least (maybe more natural? 2:20). Idk why but I feel like the intro solo sounds bad too lol. Now more work to do on that!

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1RY_...ew?usp=sharing

    Thanks for the help everyone I really appreciate it. I worked really hard at starting to add vibrato to the top of those bends.
    Last edited by chillytouch; 11-16-2019 at 04:20 PM.

  4. #24
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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    It's coming along!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Douglas Adams
    This planet has - or rather had - a problem, which was this: most of the people living on it were unhappy for pretty much of the time. Many solutions were suggested for this problem, but most of these were largely concerned with the movements of small green pieces of paper, which is odd because on the whole it wasn't the small green pieces of paper that were unhappy.

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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Quote Originally Posted by GuitarStv View Post
    It's coming along!
    Thank you, I have been looking for some other non-van halen stuff to practice as I've been mainly practicing this, the intro to 5150, ain't talkin bout love, dance the night away, and 316.

    I came across the song "I'm alright" by Neil Zaza. Never even heard of him before, guess I'm under a rock. But, man that song is beautiful.

    Do you think at my level I may be able to get that intro down (the opening 30 second riff)? I Would really love to dive into that.

  6. #26
    Sock Market Trader GuitarStv's Avatar
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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Yeah, you can do that intro with some practice no problem. That riff sounds fun to play, it's mostly just arpeggiated 8th notes and the occasional triplet pull-off. Watch carefully how he hooks his thumb over the top of the guitar to get the leverage to do the wide vibrato on the intro riff note: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QadSVWXF_ks

    I'd strongly encourage you to learn some scales/modes so that you start to figure out why he's playing the notes that he's playing. This will help you in remembering songs as you learn them, rather than simply memorizing locations on the fretboard for your fingers to go (which is what I spent way too long doing while learning to play guitar).




    Check out Satriani's song 'Crush of Love' too. Seems like the kind of tune you go for, and has a lot of opportunity to practice your vibrato on held notes.
    Join me in the fight against muscular atrophy!

    Quote Originally Posted by Douglas Adams
    This planet has - or rather had - a problem, which was this: most of the people living on it were unhappy for pretty much of the time. Many solutions were suggested for this problem, but most of these were largely concerned with the movements of small green pieces of paper, which is odd because on the whole it wasn't the small green pieces of paper that were unhappy.

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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Quote Originally Posted by GuitarStv View Post
    Yeah, you can do that intro with some practice no problem. That riff sounds fun to play, it's mostly just arpeggiated 8th notes and the occasional triplet pull-off. Watch carefully how he hooks his thumb over the top of the guitar to get the leverage to do the wide vibrato on the intro riff note: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QadSVWXF_ks

    I'd strongly encourage you to learn some scales/modes so that you start to figure out why he's playing the notes that he's playing. This will help you in remembering songs as you learn them, rather than simply memorizing locations on the fretboard for your fingers to go (which is what I spent way too long doing while learning to play guitar).




    Check out Satriani's song 'Crush of Love' too. Seems like the kind of tune you go for, and has a lot of opportunity to practice your vibrato on held notes.
    Will do. This Thursday at my lesson I'm going to tell my teacher I want to spend more time on learning the notes/how to know what key someone is playing in, etc. I'm getting better now at matching the tone with the fret but I can't come up with the note off the top of my head quickly. I have to sit there and count half steps down the frets if that makes sense. I will check that song out too!

    Thank you very much again

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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Ended up finding this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I_LSt9Qz81Y&t=533s

    This was exactly what I needed. It is the tutorial for the notes but he also explains what the chords are and how they relate. Perfect for me.

  9. #29
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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    I've always found that learning theory seems to work best by bits of it as they're applied in songs you like. You can eventually get any song down by learning the places on the fretboard to play, but once you understand why your hands are going there you start to become a musician. Then you can apply the same techniques and ideas to your own compositions and soloing.
    Join me in the fight against muscular atrophy!

    Quote Originally Posted by Douglas Adams
    This planet has - or rather had - a problem, which was this: most of the people living on it were unhappy for pretty much of the time. Many solutions were suggested for this problem, but most of these were largely concerned with the movements of small green pieces of paper, which is odd because on the whole it wasn't the small green pieces of paper that were unhappy.

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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1PzM7riPCg4

    well, got the notes down. now just gotta clean it up and make it sound good!

  11. #31
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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Yeah, looks like you've got the notes right. You've only got about 10 - 15% left to go now.

    Try slowing it down with a metronome until you're playing it exactly the way you want to play it with zero mistakes. Once you can get through the piece perfectly twice in a row, increase the speed of your metronome a couple bpm. Eventually you'll get to a point where you're making a mistake every other time you play the piece. Don't keep trying to force things at this point (I know, that's the natural reaction :P ) that will only train you to play it wrong. Drop the bpm of your metronome by 10 until you are getting it perfect again twice in a row and then start working up in speed. It's very important that you only move up in speed when you're playing it perfectly.

    You should have it down exactly right in a week or so of doing this for 15 - 20 minutes a day.
    Join me in the fight against muscular atrophy!

    Quote Originally Posted by Douglas Adams
    This planet has - or rather had - a problem, which was this: most of the people living on it were unhappy for pretty much of the time. Many solutions were suggested for this problem, but most of these were largely concerned with the movements of small green pieces of paper, which is odd because on the whole it wasn't the small green pieces of paper that were unhappy.

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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Quote Originally Posted by GuitarStv View Post
    Yeah, looks like you've got the notes right. You've only got about 10 - 15% left to go now.

    Try slowing it down with a metronome until you're playing it exactly the way you want to play it with zero mistakes. Once you can get through the piece perfectly twice in a row, increase the speed of your metronome a couple bpm. Eventually you'll get to a point where you're making a mistake every other time you play the piece. Don't keep trying to force things at this point (I know, that's the natural reaction :P ) that will only train you to play it wrong. Drop the bpm of your metronome by 10 until you are getting it perfect again twice in a row and then start working up in speed. It's very important that you only move up in speed when you're playing it perfectly.

    You should have it down exactly right in a week or so of doing this for 15 - 20 minutes a day.
    Will do this! That's the nice thing about guitarbackingtracks.com it's kind of convenient to slow down the song speed lol.

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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Quote Originally Posted by GuitarStv View Post
    Yeah, looks like you've got the notes right. You've only got about 10 - 15% left to go now.

    Try slowing it down with a metronome until you're playing it exactly the way you want to play it with zero mistakes. Once you can get through the piece perfectly twice in a row, increase the speed of your metronome a couple bpm. Eventually you'll get to a point where you're making a mistake every other time you play the piece. Don't keep trying to force things at this point (I know, that's the natural reaction :P ) that will only train you to play it wrong. Drop the bpm of your metronome by 10 until you are getting it perfect again twice in a row and then start working up in speed. It's very important that you only move up in speed when you're playing it perfectly.

    You should have it down exactly right in a week or so of doing this for 15 - 20 minutes a day.
    Hey GuitarStv quick question for you,

    So, while I'm practicing songs that I learn, is it ok for me to be down picking everything? It just feels more comfortable. When I practice my scales before songs I always alternate pick, but playing a full song it just feels more comfortable. Is that a bad thing?

  14. #34
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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    I'd slow everything down and use more efficient picking for everything. It is harder, but it is less likely to cause damage and pain down the road.
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  15. #35
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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Quote Originally Posted by chillytouch View Post
    Hey GuitarStv quick question for you,

    So, while I'm practicing songs that I learn, is it ok for me to be down picking everything? It just feels more comfortable. When I practice my scales before songs I always alternate pick, but playing a full song it just feels more comfortable. Is that a bad thing?
    It's a bad thing if you want to develop smooth playing at speed. You're giving up 50% of your speed by ignoring half of the pick strokes available to you!


    There are different schools of thought regarding the best way to sound a note. Alternating picking vs economy picking vs legato all have pluses and minuses, but you'll find your fastest/most fluid playing in one of 'em. It's worth trying them all out, and specializing in at least one . . . learning an efficient way to sound notes is one of the most important ways you have to control your instrument. It will take a while (and may involve unlearning bad habits - always painful) but will pay dividends later on in your playing.
    Join me in the fight against muscular atrophy!

    Quote Originally Posted by Douglas Adams
    This planet has - or rather had - a problem, which was this: most of the people living on it were unhappy for pretty much of the time. Many solutions were suggested for this problem, but most of these were largely concerned with the movements of small green pieces of paper, which is odd because on the whole it wasn't the small green pieces of paper that were unhappy.

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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Thanks guys. I'll try to practice that.

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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    I'm so close now! I can play 95% of the song now to speed! It's a ton of fun! It gives me so much motivation to practice. There is 1 tiny spot that is still giving me trouble (the bottom 2 measures). It's the only "Run" i guess you could say in the song.

    Name:  tab.png
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    Something like this, is the best thing to do just drill it lower tempo over and over?

  18. #38
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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Yes, it's good to practice slowly if you can't play it at speed. Also judging by your video you could focus on practicing much easier material. Like play to a metronome or backing track and just focus on your rhythm. Play scales and chords at quarter notes, 8th notes, 8th note triplets, 16th notes etc. Just try to get your rhythms exact. You'll sound better if you can play simpler material with correct rhythm than complex notes but no rhythm. One of the 1st songs that I learned with a simple riff and solo was Floyd The Barber by Nirvana. Both the rhythm parts and solo are really simple but really good! Just try to nail both the rhythm and the feel that goes with the energy of the song.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cBm-XeOVIeY

    https://www.songsterr.com/a/wsa/nirv...r-tab-s11404t0
    Last edited by Clint 55; 12-27-2019 at 09:22 PM.
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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Quote Originally Posted by Clint 55 View Post
    Yes, it's good to practice slowly if you can't play it at speed. Also judging by your video you could focus on practicing much easier material. Like play to a metronome or backing track and just focus on your rhythm. Play scales and chords at quarter notes, 8th notes, 8th note triplets, 16th notes etc. Just try to get your rhythms exact. You'll sound better if you can play simpler material with correct rythm than complex notes but no rhythm. One of the 1st songs that I learned with a simple riff and solo was Floyd The Barber by Nirvana. Both the rhythm parts and solo are really simple but really good! Just try to nail both the rhythm and the feel that goes with the energy of the song.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cBm-XeOVIeY

    https://www.songsterr.com/a/wsa/nirv...r-tab-s11404t0
    Thanks for the advice. Yeah I understand. This was when I was really new to the song. My rhythm with it has gotten much better. But yeah easier stuff is helping too because I signed up for "guitar tricks" and I am doing their online classes. I just went through all their beginner courses and learned a lot. A bunch of it was rhythm too so I am still practicing that as well.

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    Default Re: Newer player - can you tell me some areas to focus on?

    Progress ! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FlcOyxeJNq0 I know I still make lots of mistakes , but I feel like i'm definitely improving. At the 3:30 mark is that run I posted above. I am just playing it slowly to a metronome for practice, don't have it down though yet. Areas of advice welcome. I'm 95% sure I'm not doing vibrato correctly. I looked online at a couple tutorials so I am working on that as well as the bend accuracy.
    Last edited by chillytouch; 01-04-2020 at 07:28 PM.

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