stuck in a big rut

Discuss playing styles and techniques, or share your own here.
GYiakoumi
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Another Manchester boy

Keith Phillips, He rocks, tell him George sent ya ;)

http://www.keithphillipsguitarist.com/tuition.htm
honeybadger
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GYiakoumi wrote:Another Manchester boy

Keith Phillips, He rocks, tell him George sent ya ;)

http://www.keithphillipsguitarist.com/tuition.htm
:D

Thanks so much bill and G.That kieth guy looks cool.A massive help Thakyou. :D
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Big Bad Bill
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When I was looking for a guitar tutor I actually auditioned three or four. I was up front with them and told them what I was doing in the hope I'd find somebody who's playing I liked, whose technique was to my taste and who i got on with. A one-to-one pupil/teacher relationship is after all quite an intimate and personal situation-at least that's what mine says as he's touching me up ;-)

Anyway, to my horror, most of the tutors I 'auditioned' just weren't up to the job! Either their technique was only very slightly better than mine, their theory was poor at best or they just couldn't teach and get ideas across. I was very surprised indeed and it led me to understand why some many kids just give up on guitar and so soon. Now I have a brilliant teacher (Ainsley Stones), who's abilities are incredible, who had the skill to demystify music theory simply and I feel my playing has progressed in light-year-leaps thanks to him.

So, honeybadger, I'd suggest you find a tutor here: http://www.registryofguitartutors.co.uk ... 1Qod2wnykA

to avoid people who have no real idea about teaching guitar, and meet a few for a preliminary lesson and discuss what you want out of your lessons and see if you think they can help you achieve that goal. This way, I'm sure you'll find what you are looking for.
Hypnus9
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SammyH wrote:hi everyone

ive been playing guitar for around 9 months now, recently over the last 2 weeks or so our found my self stuck in a serious rut which i just cant get out of

basicly i cant understand how modes work or how i can apply them, also i have a hard to learning to play a full song so i anyone can give any advice on how to tackle this would be great. my practice sessions basicly are centred on technique and scales and chords and usally last around 6 hours a day.

so in summery i need
- help with modes and understanding them
- songs that can help improve me as a musician
- any general advice on how i can progress

thanks in advance
Sammy,

I have been playing and composing for 32 years, and maybe what I can best tell you is that your only getting a little burned out. Don't sweat it. First, take a couple of days off from it, and then approach your instrument fresh.

Also, as for modes, and understanding them, you desire a noble task! That is part of a lifelong study that if you persevere, you will find great success at. Now, a little on modes. Let's being with 'C' Major : C,D,E,F,G,A,B,C, which is also known as the 'C' Ionian Mode. This is the fundamental ecclesesatical, or "Church" mode. The seven modes are, Ionian, Dorian, Phrygian, Lydian, Mixolydian, Aeolian, Locrian, and that brings us back to the Ionian, which begins an octave higher than when we began in the "root" position. The modes give us many things to consider: Are we going to play the whole piece in one particular mode, such as the Phrygian Mode, or are we going to be modulating and using, or borrowing modes from other keys? First, we have to consider the purpose of a scale.

The C Ionian mode, fundamentally, is a diatonic building block for both harmony and melody. We can derive, harmonically either seven basic triads from it, seven fundamentally different arpeggios, all by virtue of the seven notes found in the 'C' Ionian mode itself., again C-D-E-F-G-A-B-and back to C. From the C Ionian Mode, we derive, basically these triads- C major, d minor, e minor, F major, G major, A Minor and B Diminished. Each one of these triads begins on a degree of the mode itself. For instance, C Major begins on C, D Minor begins on D, etc. A triad is a chord, but a chord is not necessarily a triad, in terms of definition. Now let's build a few chords so you will understand modes a little better. The C Major triad is made up of the three notes, C-E-G, in the root position. Now, let's re-examine the C Ionian mode to see where these three notes come in the mode. C-D-E-F-G-A-B-C; you'll notice that C and E are a third apart, and E and G are also a third apart, and that E is the intersecting note, or tone. Begin doing this with every scale degree, playing the notes individually in arpeggio form. By the way, if you don't know the meaning of a certain word I am using in the course of this, Google and Wikipedia are your friends, especially Google. Do Google searches on every musical term you run into . You'll find a wealth of information on anything you care to know.

Now, I'm going to leave off here, so you can give a little though to what's been said, and I'll check back, just in case you have any questions. also, you asked what songs could you learn in order to become a better player? There is not one song under heaven that can be learned that will not help you improve in some measure. Learn anything and everything you can get your hands on. And listen to a good selection of guitarists. While they might seem to indiviuals to you, they all work with the same building blocks as everybody else. It is, especially in the case of such players as Steve, that they have applied themselves and everything they have learned, to furthering their knowledge not only of the guitar, but of music in general, and have become virtuosos. Have you ever heard the saying, "Great minds think alike?" Well there is a say in the Bible, "He who walks with the wise will grow wise." In your practice, associate with those, and I mean in your listening tastes, to those whom you aspire to. I know this is a natural inclination, but don't necessarily take the easy route. There is nothing in life worth doing that is easy, necessarily. It is said that the way that leads to life is hard, and that the way that leads to destruction is easy. Just know that your rut is just natures way of telling you to take a day off. It is nothing serious. Just go hang with friends, and see what happens. It is far from the end of your tenure as a guitarist/musician. You'll come out of it just fine with fresh ears.
Pif
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Hypnus9 wrote:Just know that your rut is just natures way of telling you to take a day off. It is nothing serious. Just go hang with friends, and see what happens. It is far from the end of your tenure as a guitarist/musician. You'll come out of it just fine with fresh ears.
I agree heartily. That probably is one specific area where Steve Vai himself is of little help : knowing when and how to cut yourself some slack. The guy's a perfectionnist and a probably a workaholic, but that's just not just for everybody, and certainly not one person *all the time*.
GYiakoumi
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honeybadger wrote:
GYiakoumi wrote:Another Manchester boy

Keith Phillips, He rocks, tell him George sent ya ;)

http://www.keithphillipsguitarist.com/tuition.htm
:D

Thanks so much bill and G.That kieth guy looks cool.A massive help Thakyou. :D
No problem my friend :)
honeybadger
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My god! Why is it so difficult to find a teacher that will teach me at home these days?? I have contacted 25 now and 1!!! is able to come out (thats not 100% yet either) :shock:

Oh, & thanks again to BBB and GYaikoumi for the website tips :D

I am willing to pay good money, a decent rate p/h and of course cover(in full) travel cost's.

I understand that the economy is bad right now and petrol is probably at it's highest......but wouldnt you think people would be looking for more work???

Really pissed off! :roll:
My tecnique suck's big time. I benefit best from 1 to 1 lesson's. I dont know why?.I think I saw an "online lesson's" thread? Think I will check that out.
Still really pissed off though :(

Oh!! and yeah? does anybody else have a tendancy to hold their breath when they are practising?? I do it, then realise I am doin it, then stop myself, then find I am doing it again 2 mins later?? :?
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Big Bad Bill
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There's a similar problem with piano teachers, but you can usually find ones that will come out to the pupil. I suppose they don't want to do it because of the time factor-a 30 minute lesson for £13 becomes an hour or more due to the commute. I used to coach a medical student and went to her house and it was a complete pain in the arse because of the travelling. But as the recession bites, perhaps the money to disadvantage ratio will diminish and more peripatetic guitar tutors will become available.

Don't you have any pals, who can play better than you who will come over for an 'exchange of ideas'? Can you identify what specifically you're struggling with? Have you considered taking some guitar grades? That improved my playing and focused my practise no end. In fact, I've just decided I'm going to do a couple more grades as I feel a bit 'lost' at the moment.
honeybadger
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Big Bad Bill wrote:There's a similar problem with piano teachers, but you can usually find ones that will come out to the pupil. I suppose they don't want to do it because of the time factor-a 30 minute lesson for £13 becomes an hour or more due to the commute. I used to coach a medical student and went to her house and it was a complete pain in the arse because of the travelling. But as the recession bites, perhaps the money to disadvantage ratio will diminish and more peripatetic guitar tutors will become available.

Don't you have any pals, who can play better than you who will come over for an 'exchange of ideas'? Can you identify what specifically you're struggling with? Have you considered taking some guitar grades? That improved my playing and focused my practise no end. In fact, I've just decided I'm going to do a couple more grades as I feel a bit 'lost' at the moment.
Lol, ya know I have no firend's BBB :wink:
Struggling with in particular.....bends. Making them nice and clean. Accurate, no popping or scrapping. That horrible sound you get when you catch your finger tip on the string above an its not damped,(or it is and sounds worse).Over band's :shock: I hate that. Relaxing when playing. Sweeping, long legato's. Its all keeping it sounding tidy really. I could go on forever BBB. :roll: I can play them....but there are alway's noises from the other strings when I lose focus.
Just had a look at Dave Wiener's page. the riff of the week is a good ref. I will use that. The ibreathemusic, is good too(thanks Loveblood) and that other guitarist site mentioned in "online sessions"(cant remember now) thats good too. The problem is, it's either, a lot of written advice or a lot of people just playing......no real nitty gritty.I am pretty imaptient I suppose(in a way), so when I see a page full of "do this, do that", my focus gets lost in it all.Too much info at once.
That's were that "riff of the week" is good. Dave explains it very well, step by step. The clip about rhythm in you solo's is really interesting. thats something I have had problem's with for years.
I hope to hear from the 1 teacher who said he would come out either today or tomo. So, finger's crossed :)
GYiakoumi
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Did you ring Keith?
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Big Bad Bill
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honeybadger wrote:Lol, ya know I have no firend's BBB :wink:
Well I thought you must have some?
honeybadger wrote:Struggling with in particular.....bends. Making them nice and clean. Accurate, no popping or scrapping. That horrible sound you get when you catch your finger tip on the string above an its not damped,(or it is and sounds worse).Over band's :shock:
And what are you comparing your bends to? The reason I ask is because once I heard a single track of noted guitarist playing with the rest of the band faded out and I could distinctly hear the ' handling' noise' of his playing. But in a mix, you can't hear it. Try resting your pick on the adjacent, noisy string while performing the bend-I do this for the intro of 'Hand on Heart' to make it really clean.

Over bends? Fret a note, then bend the string two frets down from it so it matches the note you held before. Do this a hundred time as day! Actually that repeating 'Answers' lick is perfect for perfecting your bends and its great fun to play with the Naked Vamps backing.

honeybadger wrote: Relaxing when playing.
I find that hard- half a bottle of Jack Daniels helps with relaxing!
honeybadger wrote:Sweeping, long legato's. Its all keeping it sounding tidy really.
That is hard, but look at your right and left hand muting amd experiment by very slightly shifting their positions when you play. You could always buy one of these if you want to be lazy!
http://www.powerpresskits.com/PPKs/index.aspx?PPK=758

honeybadger wrote:I could go on forever BBB. :roll: I can play them....but there are alway's noises from the other strings when I lose focus.
I think you have to accept that with a high gain amp and hot pick ups, you're going to get some string noise, honeyb.
honeybadger wrote:I hope to hear from the 1 teacher who said he would come out either today or tomo. So, finger's crossed :)
Oh good luck with that and if its a bloke, wear a short skirt to ensure he comes back again!
honeybadger
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GYiakoumi wrote:Did you ring Keith?
He only has email G and I have recently moved over to Vista and its arsing about with my email :evil:

Thanks for the advice BBB. I know what you mean about the first phrase on HOH....its a bitch with that string jump then straight into that full tone bend.....but I am getting there. Plus I need to build my finger strength back up. Remember, I havent picked her back up in about 4 years so its a matter of being patient and letting things come back to me naturally too.Oh & the Elixir nanoweb are lovely....thanks again for that too :D

I am playing clean no effects too, so that I can hear everything clearly. Obviously this has a down side too as everything sounds so crap and flat. I figure if I can make something sound nice without all the do dah's it should sound much better when I put all my effects on. :) I am sure I have a real bad sadistic streak, lol.
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Big Bad Bill
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Just plinking on my guitar and realised something else I do to clean up bends and vibrato, that I stole from Steve! When he vibs or bends a string, he lays his straightened index finger across the strings to mute the unwanted ones! For bends it means just using two fingers (second and third) but when you're as strong as me and Steve, its not difficult :wink: Try it, it really works!
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Ricardo
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Get a drum machine, and program some cool grooves to jam on. Make up some cool rhythmic vamp, no more than two chords, and practice keeping rhythm and soloing by trading off with your vamp (maybe 8 or 16 bars each, whatever you want). Try to keep it easy at first, just a simple mode or scale, but make your soloing just as rhythmic as your vamping. If you get bored, try a different tempo. In any case don't noodle, really focus on the timing of your licks, make it all groove somehow. Start exploring the neck, always keep the groove going no matter where you go with it.

Ricardo
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Big Bad Bill
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Another thing for your bends: use the tips of your bending fingers to mute the strings above the bended string and the lower parts of your distal phalanges to mute the strings below. You might have to slightly adjust the positioning of your fingers on the string to do this, but it works.

Another thing I've found really effective is when you want to bend the G string, pull it downwards rather than pushing it upwards (not the first time I've pulled down G strings :wink: ). It gives you a lot more control and makes adding vibrato a lot easier too.
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