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jrcsgtpeppers 02-01-2013 01:51 AM

what do you practice?
its year 6 of me being a guitarist and wow im not 6/10s as good as tosin abasi yet, so i need some defined exercises. what i have been playing is simple boring exercises that arent getting me anywhere. i play the C ionian scale, then move up and play the d dorian scale, then move up and play the e phygian scale, then the f lydian, then g mixolydian, then a aeolian then b locrian then im back at c ionian. i play this over and over again, straight up and down, then i play it in 4's. after i finish that i play Am arpeggios. and Ab fully diminished arpeggios. then some C major arpeggios. then i also play this all in Gmajor sometimes. i also just play the top 2 strings and play scales onjust those as well.

before all of that i play the classic steve vai warm up routine

and so on and so fourth. i also do this completely acending and completely descending, ie just 1-2-3-4 all the way up and just 4-3-2-1 all the way up.

so are these legit good things i should continue practicing with a metranome or should i adopt some new licks to practice?

Sleepy__Head 02-01-2013 04:52 AM

What do you mean by 'not getting anywhere'? That could mean anything from "I don't know any specific pieces" to "I play like shit".

Hail 02-01-2013 04:55 AM

i play music

you should try it sometime

Sleepy__Head 02-01-2013 05:09 AM

Originally Posted by Hail
i play music

That's debatable.

1e0ye0e0s 02-01-2013 05:30 AM

It's simple. Practice what you want to know. Knowing a hundred licks is not really useful if ur only using fifty. Also I don't recommend wanting to sound like abasi or whoever. You gotta know know why You are playing and what you wanna express and this requires some soul searching. You will never gonna be as good as (insert favourite guitarist)!! You can only be as good as you and this should be a goal or something! Simple shit get it? :D

jrcsgtpeppers 02-01-2013 06:01 AM

by wanting to be as good as tosin abasi i am refering to be able to swiftfully attempt and play licks he can play. i dont go out of my way to be able to learn a million songs, but when im listening and come across licks i wana learn, and find out i cant play them, i realize i can be improving. i can always put in more efficient time into my guitar metranome pracicing, and iv already been wworking on the amount of practice and time i have to put into it, but i want to revize what im actually practicing when it comes to straightforeward metranome practice.

so thats what im asking for, exercise routines that you guys find useful or that other guitarists have suggested in lessons. like i said iv only ever really liked steve vais lesson. its the best chromatic practice i can get. but as for everything else. i want arpeggio practice exercies and alternate picking excercices and the little things in between

Sleepy__Head 02-01-2013 06:49 AM

You tend get better at what you do at lot of. If I do a lot of push-ups I'll get better at push-ups. If I do sit-ups I'll get better at sit-ups. If I want to go rock-climbing both of these are likely to help a little bit because they'll exercise some of the muscles I need when I'm climbing, but really the best thing to do is for me to do lots of rock climbing.

So it is with guitar.
If you want to play the licks he can play you need to learn the licks he plays and incorporate them into your practice routine.
If I'm learning to play a Bach Allemande on the classical guitar then exercises that I find useful are likely to be of little benefit to you if you're aiming to play speed-based licks.

If you play scales & arps a lot what you'll better at is playing scales & arps. That's not the same as creating flowing melodies, which is what an interesting solo or piece of music is mainly about.

Besides, arpeggio practice exercises are ten-a-penny. You can create them yourself by thinking creatively about how you're practicing them. For example:
There are 1-, 2-, and 3-octave arpeggios.
You can start from the root, 3rd, 5th, 7th, &c.
You can start from the lowest note of the arpeggio, the highest note, or somewhere in-between.
You can play the arpeggio from low to high, from high to low, or some combination of the two (e.g. middle - high - middle - low - middle)
Use a limited number of strings to play an arpeggio. Yes a 1-string arpeggio isn't going to be possible if you want to play a 3-octave arpeggio, but it will work for some 1-octave arpeggios.
Use sweep picking.
Use alternate picking.
Use directional picking.
Arpeggios are broken chords. So pick a chord type you're not that familiar with and practice that.

Metronome practice is fine as far as it goes, but you be able to keep a beat without a metronome.

There are an infinite number of possible licks. So you'll never know them all. And the likelihood of being able to pick up every lick first time is vanishingly small.
If there was a famous actor who hadn't learned his lines would that fact all on its own mean he was a shit actor?
Don't confuse "knowing lots of licks" with "being a great guitar player". It's a question of quality, not quantity.

I don't know if you'll find it at all helpful but I can tell you what my practice routine used to look like when I was studying for classical exams ...

15 minutes scales & arpeggios
15 minutes piece #1
15 minutes piece #2
15 minutes piece #3

I would spend most of my time playing pieces of music rather than scales & arps.

Pace what I said above: This made me great at playing pieces of classical music but I wasn't great at picking, so over the last few years I've gone back to picking and tried to improve that, and hardly picked up the classical guitar. Now I'm better at picking but my classical playing is abysmal.

MaggaraMarine 02-01-2013 09:32 AM

Speed isn't everything. By those scale exercises you can improve your speed and of course remember the scales better. But that's it. Remember to play music too, not just some random exercises.

food1010 02-02-2013 01:44 AM

Originally Posted by MaggaraMarine
Speed isn't everything. By those scale exercises you can improve your speed and of course remember the scales better. But that's it. Remember to play music too, not just some random exercises.
Yep. To take this further, don't just learn riffs either. By just learning a bunch of random riffs, all you're going to be able to do is throw a bunch of random riffs together. If you want to be able to write/improvise a meaningful solo/song/whatever you need to learn music. I don't mean full songs necessarily, but you need to hear, sing and internalize music. Scales don't make music and neither do riffs. You need to get past that.

And this doesn't just mean to learn more scales or more theory in general. Start using your ears. Music doesn't come from your fingers, it comes from your soul. As cheesy as that sounds, it couldn't be more true.

bondmorkret 02-02-2013 03:22 AM

My usual daily practice would include ear training, sightreading, comping, static vamp improv, resolving tension lines, playing some tunes, phrasing/timefeel, and legato through changes. Although I guess it can vary from day to day :)

91RG350 02-07-2013 02:42 AM

Originally Posted by 1e0ye0e0s
It's simple. Practice what you want to know.

This. It was expanded on by Sleepy Head very well. Dont tell him that though. Dont want him to get a big ego.

Sleepy__Head 02-07-2013 03:59 AM

TheHydra 02-07-2013 04:23 AM

Originally Posted by Sleepy__Head
That's debatable.

That is one cute cat.

mdc 02-07-2013 07:57 AM


cdgraves 02-07-2013 11:21 AM

well you can get specific exercises anywhere online or in books (a method-type book helps).

A good way to develop technique is through a combination of work and maintenance. Spend 15 minutes every day on your technique at whatever your current skill level is, and once you're comfortable, spend a good hour or so once in a while to break through to the next level.

Example: spend 15minutes a day this week doing alt picking, and then at the end of the week spend a whole hour working out whatever mistakes you've been making.

Beyond that, though, you should spend most of your time practicing music. Here are my practice plans for my day off work:

15min RH
15min LH
15min scales
15min arpeggios

45min new covers
45min old covers

45-60min jazz

60min original music

2hrs original music rehearsal

Hail 02-07-2013 11:22 AM

i learned more from a few months in an inspiration-based routine without any strict requirements involved than i did from 2 years of a regimented technical workout.

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