#1
I'm so disgusted with myself right now.I've been doing lessons for a year,well, 11 months.I'm learning to read notation,not tab,I'm 46 and never played any instrument. My problem is my actual lessons.I do well at home and practice everyday,but I totally crash and burn if I do one little thing wrong at my lesson.This goes back to my childhood when my stepdad used to drill me on my math homework and I would totally blank out.To this day I have a hard time when all the attention is one me.I can't even type on the computer if someone is standing behind me,ugh!!!My teacher was taught by my blood father who was an excellent quitarist and pretty big time.My dad died when I was four .So I'm not sure if this is part of the problem or if it's a compound problem.I don't know if a different teacher would help the problem or what.I feel like quitting totally but really want to learn to play......advice please.
#2
Get a grip and play more infront of people, its how i got past my nervousness of playing, even infront on my parents i was shy when playing, now i can do it public

Just have one thought in your head -

**** everyone else, im doing this for myself, i deserve it, and im gona ****ing enjoy it.
#3
Quote by kenbiki
I'm so disgusted with myself right now.I've been doing lessons for a year,well, 11 months.I'm learning to read notation,not tab,I'm 46 and never played any instrument. My problem is my actual lessons.I do well at home and practice everyday,but I totally crash and burn if I do one little thing wrong at my lesson.This goes back to my childhood when my stepdad used to drill me on my math homework and I would totally blank out.To this day I have a hard time when all the attention is one me.I can't even type on the computer if someone is standing behind me,ugh!!!My teacher was taught by my blood father who was an excellent quitarist and pretty big time.My dad died when I was four .So I'm not sure if this is part of the problem or if it's a compound problem.I don't know if a different teacher would help the problem or what.I feel like quitting totally but really want to learn to play......advice please.


stop worrying about "doing something wrong". Just enjoy playing.
#4
I feel your pain, I was considered "too old" when I picked up the guitar a year ago.

Its frustrating when I mess up in front of a teacher, especially when Its something I played a bunch of times at home, I swear my guitar teacher thinks I'm retarded lol. But the fact is that I enjoy playing guitar, I know I'll never be the best but I don't care, it makes me happy and I feel my life would be less without it. Coming from a family of quitters makes me want to work harder at it.
Gear:
Fender Stratocaster
Silvertone 1448L
TC Electronic Polytune
Fender Blues Jr.
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#5
so man, chill out.
youre 46, so you're not some creepy teenager, you have already faced life. now, when you were young, you had to do math because someone was making you do that.you lessons now are because you want to, you can quit them anytime. I know you want to be a good player, but take it easy. You have your own pace, you know its harder to learn something at that age. but, gather you strength, think of something nice, like your father, and do this for him and you.You need motivation, and there's where you come in.

Practical tip : Alcohol helps!

take it easy!
#6
Don't ever quit playing guitar. Ever.

I don't know if you're one of those people that it hurts to think of someone that close to you after they died, as I don't know the feeling. But if you're not, think of him and how proud he would be if he knew you became as good, or better than him. On the nervous thing, I suggest what Anthony said in the first post.
Save a trip to the RT!
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#7
IF you put your passino for the intrument first the skills will come with it.
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this is the best when playing paramore
#8
Well tell your teacher you have a problem playing for someone, I'm sure they'd understand and the more comfortable they can make you feel the less nervous you'll be.
I'm Tyler
#9
Yeah just chill a little.
Guitar should be a fun hobby, not something that you feel compelled to perfect.
#10
Learn a simple piece well, very well then play it in front of people and keep doing this with other pieces till you overcome your problem,

best of luck and remember guitar is all about having fun, it's not about getting all tensed up and stressed...
#11
Quote by GuitarMunky
stop worrying about "doing something wrong". Just enjoy playing.

+1 to this. secondly don't worry about what other people think. i know you're trying to look good for the teacher, thats kinda the point. but you can't sweat it man, just go with the flow and do what ya do. i think one of the best things a guitarist can do is just keep playing through a f#ckup. i've known lotta players who once they messed up once, you could tell their mind only thought about that which caused more and more problems.

if you feel like your teacher is stressing you out, tell him/her that. if you feel its a self conscious thing then talk to your teacher about it as well. a good guitar teacher won't take a ruler to your knuckles cuz you botched a note in a chord or missed a note in a scale run or did something wrong. just an fyi, someone above said "learn something simple and play it well" i agree, i'd much rather hear something simple played well than something more complex played like crap.
Last edited by z4twenny at Feb 6, 2009,
#12
"Chilling out" can be difficult and he knows what to do the problem lies in the execution.


I can only suggest talking to your teacher about it, and maybe try out a lesson with another to see if the same thing happens. Isolate the problem if it is with your father experience. If it isn't, I found that going out and busking helped increase my comfort levels playing in front of people. There likely ill not be a solution but hopefully you can find a way to eliminate the symptom.
#13
If you can't enjoy ur lessons because of your youth you have some kind of post-trauma.

Try it, or else seek a psychologist, because if something that happened 20+ years ago still affects you, then the probability is high it isn't going to change in 1 day.

It sounds like you have a fear of failing. Alot of people have this, some minor some major.

What do you wanna achieve on ur guitar? Just take the time, and perhaps try to do some self study so you can do it in peace and ur own comfort, without having the feeling of trying to prove responsibility to others.

The "Re-incarnation of Plato" Award 2009
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Who's Andy Timmons??
#14
Wow,great and quick responses.I know I need to chill out.........my teacher actually told me that I need to walk into the lesson and say "**** it"........I'm gonna keep plugging away and try my best to chill.Thank you so much for all the good advice.
#15
Quote by kenbiki
Wow,great and quick responses.I know I need to chill out.........my teacher actually told me that I need to walk into the lesson and say "**** it"........I'm gonna keep plugging away and try my best to chill.Thank you so much for all the good advice.


Everyone made mistakes, Everybody. Chill. Have a Cold one.
#16
Actually a cold one before my lesson would be a good idea.....except that my lesson is at 9 AM.
#17
Thick, french-press coffee with some scotch on the morning of (perhaps a little brandy too) might be just the ticket.
#18
Boy, that all sound familiar to me. I've actually been 'fiddling around' with guitar for more than a couple of decades, just as a hobby, mind you. I'm 44 right now. I am the classic underachiever. But through all my laziness about chords, I've started using a lot of open-string chords (My friends call them 'Joni Mitchell chords', but I take that as a compliment).

ANYWAY, on YouTube there are a few segments of a documentary by Howard Goodall where he's getting into chord theory regarding the Beatles, and it inspired me to rewind about 20 years and study up on the stuff I oughta have studied back then.

So I feel like a kid again- renewed just as if this is the first time I picked up a guitar. It's exciting again.

As for feeling self-concious about "screwing up" (Theoretically, there's no such thing as a 'wrong' note- I am now ducking to avoid the slings and arrows for saying that)

Anyway, B.B. King, I think it was- said just play it again, and it sounds like you meant to. I saw a clip on YouTube where he really did just that. He bent it, and wrangled it around until it fit the context of the song.

So, speed and precision...I would WAY rather listen to B.B. or Carlos Santana than any of the Shredders.

In summary- Cheer up! It's supposed to be fun. Maybe do some ridiculous songs for awhile, like commercial jingles, to lighten up the mood a bit.

Hey, but that's just me. I could be wrong. Then again, I could have attention deficit disorder and way too much coffee...
Last edited by Bbbumpy at Feb 6, 2009,
#19
Quote by Bbbumpy
. Maybe do some ridiculous songs for awhile, like commercial jingles, to lighten up the mood a bit....

seriously, lighten up. i've gone from grinding metal straight into polka into the simpsons theme song into some bad tejano back into metal just to mess with people. its fun to get a good laugh with music
#20
My roomate has the same problem. Whenever he plays in front of me he is nervous that I'm sitting there judging his 'mistakes'. What he doesn't realize, is that to be a guitar player you have to appreciate mistakes. When i'm playing in front of him I'm making mistakes as well but I just don't care. An important part of playing musical instruments is to find ways to calm your mind when you are playing, and the best way to calm my mind is to just get lost in the music you're playing.

If something is too technically difficult for you don't get discouraged! Technique will come, what's important is to enjoy what you CAN do, so find music that you like and that you can play or just play what you want!

The one word I can use to sum up my thoughts on this = Relax. But I know that's not always easy to do.
A fool is not one who makes a mistake, a fool is one who does not learn from it.
-me HAH!
#21
Im a teacher myself, and admire any adult who takes up music, because the mental capacity to learn especially when working all week is not the same as for children. I get the most frustration out of teaching adults its very weird. They struggle with the most basic of concepts compared to a 10 year old, whos brain is conditioned to learn all the time.


I had a recent pupil who only wanted to learn to jam blues with friends and just wanted x amount of lessons, so i explained the pentatonic scale barre chords and gave basic exercises for him and that was it. It really is that simple. Just read notation combined with the note values it saves you hassle in the short term, then read notation when you are more competant. I would be out of a job if i did say this to pupils but just learn on the internet, the resources are boundless.
#22
Well todays lesson went a lot better.We always start with finger exercises,which were a nightmare last week(they are pretty tricky).Well I had practiced my new exercises in the past week(lightly,cuz I was disgusted).So I pulled out the wrong exercises and nailed it......and I hadn't even practiced those.So then I had to go on and do the others as well,which I did fairly well,and the song wasn't too bad.So we'll see. I guess I just keep wondering if I really need to learn from such a precise teacher or if I'd be better off just learning some basic blues stuff and having fun.I mean I'm never gonna be a performer......We'll see.Maybe I should ask him to teach me some BB King stuff,since he's my idol and it would be an inspiration for me.
#23
Quote by kenbiki
Well todays lesson went a lot better.We always start with finger exercises,which were a nightmare last week(they are pretty tricky).Well I had practiced my new exercises in the past week(lightly,cuz I was disgusted).So I pulled out the wrong exercises and nailed it......and I hadn't even practiced those.So then I had to go on and do the others as well,which I did fairly well,and the song wasn't too bad.So we'll see. I guess I just keep wondering if I really need to learn from such a precise teacher or if I'd be better off just learning some basic blues stuff and having fun.I mean I'm never gonna be a performer......We'll see.Maybe I should ask him to teach me some BB King stuff,since he's my idol and it would be an inspiration for me.

Being able to pick out exactly what's going wrong is a sign of a really good teacher, and when you get better you will be thankful you had a teacher like that. It might take you a little longer to get playing and having fun but after that when you want to get better it will be great to have a teacher like that.

About playing badly in lessons, I once told my violin teacher after playing a piece with a couple of mistakes that I had been able to play it perfectly at home. She replied that it was a good thing that I played worse in lessons because if everything that could go wrong did go wrong in the lesson then she could identify it, and tell me how to practise to avoid it.

Also, you "pulled out the wrong exercises"? Did you take out a sheet with different exercises, or play different ones or something? Either way, you probably should be playing the exercises you were meant to, and did, practise.
#24
Quote by DegaMeth
Im a teacher myself, and admire any adult who takes up music, because the mental capacity to learn especially when working all week is not the same as for children. I get the most frustration out of teaching adults its very weird. They struggle with the most basic of concepts compared to a 10 year old, whos brain is conditioned to learn all the time.
.


Yeah, I find adults have a harder time as well. Im not so sure it's a brain issue as much as it is a priorities issue. A ten year old has no responsibilities, and can get away with blowing off school to a certain extent. ( I sure did ) an adult is in a completely different situation.
It's just a hobby for them. I don't get bent out of shape if they don't improve a whole lot. The important thing is that the enjoy it.
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Feb 7, 2009,
#25
Quote by kenbiki
Actually a cold one before my lesson would be a good idea.....except that my lesson is at 9 AM.

Scotch + Coffee = Solution?
I don't know about the scotch, but I always have about 2-3 cups of coffee on days that I feel great and shred best.
Also, try to get all priorities out of the way before playing. I can't get into the zone if I have to work or something, such as cutting firewood.
Also, I always play alot better at night, somewhere around 10PM. But I've always got to go to bed then, except on weekends, so... Yeah... Cuts me a bit short of my learning capacity. Not sure if adults would be most awake then though...
#26
Yes,I accidentally pulled out the wrong finger exercise lesson and proceeded to play it.The correct lesson,which I had practiced during the week was played afterwards when we realized what I did!It was actually good though,since I had to go through two entire lengthy finger exercises in one lesson,and it helped with my confidence.
Yes,I suppose it's good to have such a good,talented and precise teacher....I just need to go slowly,one step at a time and not look at how much I have yet to learn,as that will only intimidate me more.