#1
I've been playing guitar over 5 years now but I'm starting to get more "serious" about it. How much time should be spent learning other people's songs, and how much learning theory and writing your own stuff?
I take lessons and I'm using a Berklee method book for learning theory. I tend to spend most of my practice time on the book because I feel it makes me a technically better guitarist, but when someone tells me to "play something" on the guitar, they expect a recognizable song, not the E harmonic minor scale in eighth notes.
But playing other people's music is a big part of music too, right? And for another question, I can't learn solos to save my life. When I look at the tab it's just hard to put all the hammers, pull-offs, bends, etc. together so it sounds like the actual solo. Any advice?
Play the music, not the instrument. ~Author Unknown


blackzeppelion
Who's the band that could become the next led zeppelin?
Ovenman
Iron blimp.
J.A.M
Aluminum helicopter.
Ovenman
*Breaks out periodic table* Magnesium bi-plane.
#2
Guitar Pro 5.2 (or whatever is the latest version). Will definitely help with learning solos.
#3
practice
you can try a song that needs some new technique or scale
example: if you dont use tapping or some weird scale (like phrygian dominant scale)) try a song with them
and if someone tells you "play something" just play something that sounds good to you and them
you choose what and how to play
Hola.
#4
Quote by MarshmallowPies
I've been playing guitar over 5 years now but I'm starting to get more "serious" about it. How much time should be spent learning other people's songs, and how much learning theory and writing your own stuff?
I take lessons and I'm using a Berklee method book for learning theory. I tend to spend most of my practice time on the book because I feel it makes me a technically better guitarist, but when someone tells me to "play something" on the guitar, they expect a recognizable song, not the E harmonic minor scale in eighth notes.
But playing other people's music is a big part of music too, right? And for another question, I can't learn solos to save my life. When I look at the tab it's just hard to put all the hammers, pull-offs, bends, etc. together so it sounds like the actual solo. Any advice?


You shouldn't look at it with a VS perspective. Keep doing all of it.
shred is gaudy music
#5
You don't learn theory for the sake of theory, you learn theory to help you understand and create music. Learning how to play a scale is almost immaterial in the big picture, your fingers aren't where guitar playing starts or ends, they're somewhere in the middle of it all. Practicing scales endlessly doesn't make you a better guitarist, it just makes you good at playing scale patterns and ultimately nobody wants to hear you do that...listening to it is just as boring as doing it.

In other words you don't learn the E harmonic minor scale just so you can play the E harmonic minor scale, you learn the E harmonic minor scale so you understand how it works and what situations it can be used in, allowing you to use the sounds within that scale to create something, you learn the notes and intervals it contains, you learn that the raised 7th makes for a nicer resolution to the tonic when compared to the natural minor scale...if you havent's been doing those things then you haven't really been learning scales, you've just been learning how to play them and there's actually quite a difference.
Actually called Mark!

Quote by TNfootballfan62
People with a duck for their avatar always give good advice.

...it's a seagull

Quote by Dave_Mc
i wanna see a clip of a recto buying some groceries.


stuffmycatswatchontv.tumblr.com
Last edited by steven seagull at Jun 30, 2009,
#6
Do both. You learn loads both from playing other peoples stuff and writing/playing your own. How much you do of each really depends on where you are with your playing and where you want to be. Why don't you discuss it with your teacher?

Quote by MarshmallowPies
I can't learn solos to save my life. When I look at the tab it's just hard to put all the hammers, pull-offs, bends, etc. together so it sounds like the actual solo. Any advice?
Listen to the original A LOT so you know what its meant to sound like, then break it down into phrases and slow it right down ... and practise
#7
Well, I slightly agree with what birdman said... and learning songs or even learning how to write your own, will definitely make the learning of theory easier. And in the form of "application" which is so important.

When people ask me to play something, I usually make something up judging on their looks, or I play whatever recent piece I made. It seems adequate for them and I didn't have to learn a RacerX track to impress either.

"Be yourself is all that you can do", great song and so true. Hope this helps
#8
Similar position to you mate
You Are Reading A True Guitarists Signature. Stop Thinking I'm Not You Know I Am.

Quote by imdeth
Eblast over her face and tell her you need your privacy.
#9
Well, I'll just say this. I'm not taking lessons, I haven't been for about a year. I know theory, but don't always use it (strictly that is. I always have an idea of what i'm doing). I'm learning other peoples music only when my band is covering them, other than that, I write my own stuff. I'm getting better rapidly, and developing my own quirks, almost the beginnings of a style possibly. So, it is possible to do neither, not learn others music or focus on theory and technique, and improve. however, a strong background in theory can't harm you.
#10
Yea learn other peoples stuff, whats the point of practicing all these technical exercises and theory knowledge without being able to play a song?

EDIT: And put it to use!
Last edited by StratPlayer15 at Jul 1, 2009,
#11
That was all very good advice guys. Obviously I need to put theory practice and playing others' music together, I mean what's the point of theory if you can't use it to make your own music or at least better understand other people's?

In other words you don't learn the E harmonic minor scale just so you can play the E harmonic minor scale, you learn the E harmonic minor scale so you understand how it works and what situations it can be used in, allowing you to use the sounds within that scale to create something, you learn the notes and intervals it contains, you learn that the raised 7th makes for a nicer resolution to the tonic when compared to the natural minor scale...if you havent's been doing those things then you haven't really been learning scales, you've just been learning how to play them and there's actually quite a difference.


That's pretty profound stuff. Why doesn't my theory book say anything helpful like that? :P
Play the music, not the instrument. ~Author Unknown


blackzeppelion
Who's the band that could become the next led zeppelin?
Ovenman
Iron blimp.
J.A.M
Aluminum helicopter.
Ovenman
*Breaks out periodic table* Magnesium bi-plane.
#12
Quote by MarshmallowPies
That was all very good advice guys. Obviously I need to put theory practice and playing others' music together, I mean what's the point of theory if you can't use it to make your own music or at least better understand other people's?


You could have arthritis (or any other problem preventing you from being able to play an instrument) and still have a use for theory. You don't need to be able to play to be able to compose.
#13
Quote by isaac_bandits
You could have arthritis (or any other problem preventing you from being able to play an instrument) and still have a use for theory. You don't need to be able to play to be able to compose.


That's nice, but I personally would like to play what I compose. Most people would, I imagine.
Play the music, not the instrument. ~Author Unknown


blackzeppelion
Who's the band that could become the next led zeppelin?
Ovenman
Iron blimp.
J.A.M
Aluminum helicopter.
Ovenman
*Breaks out periodic table* Magnesium bi-plane.