#1
Okay, so some background info; I'm trying to learn a really tough song (Crossing the Rubicon by The human abstract). I'm learning it, hoping that I will become more aware of timing and be able to 16tth notes comfortable at most speeds (the song is hella fast, 175bpm). I've been working on bring the intro up to speed for about a month, I feel like Ive hit a roadblock.

I feel like I'm not retaining anything from using the metronome. I will gradually bring up the speed as I feel comfortable. I haven't been able to break 130 yet, but every time I practice I get close to it. Then the next day I practice, 85% of the time is spent reaching the level I was at the previous day. I've been hovering in the 120-130bpm area for a few weeks now and I'm really starting to get frustrated. I put in a good hour a day, I don't see anything wrong with my technique and I am remembering to take breaks.

Any advice?
Whats the longest word?


Quote by timzee117
smiles

because theres a mile between the two s's!


/killme
#2
What you are doing sounds good but try this; put it down for a few days or work on something else for a bit then come back to it fresh.
In the Valley of Vung
#3
But is it normal to be trying so hard and make no progress? I just feel like I'm repeating what I'm doing too much.

I think it works like, when I reach a higher speed I'm perfecting a tempo like 10bpm below it. Hmm
Whats the longest word?


Quote by timzee117
smiles

because theres a mile between the two s's!


/killme
#4
Patience is obviously a keyword here. I've found I get around 1bpm faster from every 3 hours of really focused practice I do. At an hour a day, that's 135 days (four and a half months) to go from 130ish to 175ish.

Secondly, improvement doesn't come smoothly - while you are practicing your brain is setting up the connections and co-ordinations. It doesn't mean that they are "all systems go". You'll probably find that in a few more weeks you'll realise you're playing things with a lot less effort and a lot more cleanly - you may notice this kick in or you may not, but it's the result of consistent focused practice.

Thirdly, if you've hit a roadblock for longer than a few weeks, then there's something you're doing wrong. It could be as simple as "you fret notes with too much pressure", or "you lift your fingers an inch after hitting each note". It could be something to do with your pick angle. People always forget this, but "Advanced Technique" is nothing but having really fantastic "Basic Technique". If you can fret and pick notes with the perfect amount of pressure with practically no wasted motion, then you're just doing what a beginner does, but better. However, you'll be playing at lightspeed with no effort.

Anyway, what I can offer you is encouragement and a word of warning.

Playing 175bpm 16th notes flawlessly through distortion is something most guitarists never manage. If you expect to be approaching that goal within a month then you've got unrealistic expectations.

Set aside the metronome goal and focus on perfection and control at least half the time - imagine spending a year reaching that "175bpm" goal and finding out that the quality of the notes played was ****? It'd be better to play flawless notes at 175 after two years, amirite?

Now, get back to practice.
#5
Quote by woodsballplayer
But is it normal to be trying so hard and make no progress?


Yes, it's quite normal.

What it should really be telling you is that there are any number of technical hurdles
involved in playing the song at tempo. Any song will have a variety of techniques
and skills used that are needed to play them. Either you're up to those or not.

What I'd do at this point is identify the stress points. Isolate the problem areas and
develop those skills in isolation. In the meantime, play the song at the tempo you
are COMFORTABLE playing it at. The song isn't going anywhere. A lot of people
will tend to just keep banging their heads on a brick wall trying to play something
they're not ready for at tempo. That's bad practice. You're just practicing your
mistakes. Ultimately this leads you nowhere except to frustration.
#6
Quote by edg
Yes, it's quite normal.

What it should really be telling you is that there are any number of technical hurdles
involved in playing the song at tempo. Any song will have a variety of techniques
and skills used that are needed to play them. Either you're up to those or not.

What I'd do at this point is identify the stress points. Isolate the problem areas and
develop those skills in isolation. In the meantime, play the song at the tempo you
are COMFORTABLE playing it at. The song isn't going anywhere. A lot of people
will tend to just keep banging their heads on a brick wall trying to play something
they're not ready for at tempo. That's bad practice. You're just practicing your
mistakes. Ultimately this leads you nowhere except to frustration.


That makes alot of sense. The problem is my alternate picking, having my hands in sync. I just want control and harmony between my two hands.

Should I aim for a different song and put this off to the side? One with a more reasonable tempo like 140? So I feel like I'm accomplishing something and wont take a year to do it?
Whats the longest word?


Quote by timzee117
smiles

because theres a mile between the two s's!


/killme
#7
Quote by woodsballplayer

Should I aim for a different song and put this off to the side?


Not unless you want to. Anything can be slowed down to the point you can work
on it as a technique. If alternate picking and keeping your hands in synch is a
problem, use it for that. Supplement it with some unrelated exercises. Practicing
1 thing right, practices everything.
#8
Am I building technique outside of just for this song by doing this?
Whats the longest word?


Quote by timzee117
smiles

because theres a mile between the two s's!


/killme
#10
Yay, more motivation to practice more!

Well there goes my social life.
Whats the longest word?


Quote by timzee117
smiles

because theres a mile between the two s's!


/killme
#11
Quote by woodsballplayer
Yay, more motivation to practice more!

Well there goes my social life.
I have 6 friends...I see them everyday.
Quote by TGautier13
Because e-cred on a sub-par 4Chan knockoff forum is what everyone strives to achieve.
We believe - so we're misled
We assume - so we're played
We confide - so we're deceived
We trust - so we're betrayed
#13
Quote by Unrelaxed
Who used to be mine...

Sorry, they're just so long...and coated in nickel.

Or are they made of nickel?
Quote by TGautier13
Because e-cred on a sub-par 4Chan knockoff forum is what everyone strives to achieve.
We believe - so we're misled
We assume - so we're played
We confide - so we're deceived
We trust - so we're betrayed
Last edited by ramm_ty at Jan 20, 2009,
#14
And so begins a long journey, but at the end of the never ending trail will be rewards beyond belief. Haha, thank you guys for all your help. I'm sure I'll be back at some point in time...

(the ... is to leave room for the unknown)
Whats the longest word?


Quote by timzee117
smiles

because theres a mile between the two s's!


/killme