I'm currently in a music theory class besides this, but until I start progressing and understanding it more, I'm looking for some advice on what to do next in the interim.

I have no problem learning chords and scales, but once I have them down, that's it. I have no idea what to do with them. I quickly get tired of just playing the scales, or just the chords - I need to utilize them in a way that it keeps me entertained and learning at the same time.

So what now?

(My recent acquisition of an acoustic has driven me to get out of my non-progression and start getting a little more serious - I'm even having a hard time looking at my starter guitar now, lol.)
Learn your keys and arpeggios. Then just play something in key. If you have an acoustic-electric, get a loop station and have hours and hours of fun. If it's just an acoustic, get someone to jam with.
All good suggestions above... I would do the following:

1. Play along with recorded music you have and identify what scale/chord changes make-up those tunes. Just recognizing those scales/key changes, etc. with your ear will be a huge change in your approach to playing music.

2. Work on different techniques - tap notes on acoustic with volume and attack, specific string stopping techniques, subtle differences between rest stroke vs. free stroke w/ right hand, cross-string scales (learn how to get those scales with alternate tunings and with interplay between open strings and fretted strings)

3. Learn about composing and arranging solo fingerstyle tunes where you have to keep both rhythm and melody in mind. There is much to learn here... I can't see how you'd run out of things to master.

Above all... learn to breathe and relax enough to play those scales and chords freely without thinking about them too deeply. As John McLaughlin says... learn everything you can about music theory and then forget it and jam.

Quote by xxxFMDxxx
Try learning some songs....

That's probably the best way to go. Songs that are above your current skill level, with new techniques to challenge you. That's the only way to improve.
The theory that you are learning will quickly help you out. Stick with practicing chords and scales and then when you learn progressions, you can improvise and have a bit more fun working on your chord changes because you'll always hit correct chords. And then you will learn about playing in key and you will understand how every note in each scale 'works' and why it is in the scale... ect.

In the interim, the best way to prepare REALLY is to drill chord and scale positions into your head. I guess I can see how that isn't much fun right now though. I learned theory way before I practiced rigorously so I never was in your shoes.

You should just skip ahead and start learning theory on your own... it is quite necessary to play guitar well and it should help you have more fun.
Last edited by Kaos_00 at Jan 26, 2009,
I don't know if they covered this in your course (probably have) but I'm currently learning more about why chord progressions are the way they are. Such as voice leading, diatonic chord subsitution, and why almost all music uses the V-I candance.
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