#1
Hello UG. My playing is very sloppy. When i play a melody, some notes get muted or i miss the fret entirely and end up on a false note. And when i play chords they don't sound good, especially the barre chords. I have developed many bad habits that i would like to fix, but i'm certain there's a few i haven't noticed that you guys may notice from my playing, as you are more proficient. Please analyze the video, tell me what bad habits i've developed, and how to fix them. Thanks

Some parts i played in the video i've improvised on the spot. So if there are any music theory people here, (such as steven seagull), any helpful tips?

For people who don't like to read long text: I've developed bad guitar habits, please analyze the video and tell me things you notice that are not good and how to fix them.

Here's the video.
Last edited by robinlint at Aug 8, 2009,
#2
are you playing the notes all on one string?
when you start strumming chords on distortion, it just all jumbles up. so maybe try to palm mute it just a little so that you can get the sound you need out?
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i dunno, i was to busy masturba ting.

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EVH. I saw him in concert. And his brother was seriously the worst bass player I've ever seen.

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Last edited by MetallicSoul92 at Aug 8, 2009,
#3
Quote by MetallicSoul92
are you playing the notes all on one string?

More than i should, yes. Sometimes i do switch to a different string, but i don't do it often.


when you start strumming chords on distortion, it just all jumbles up. so maybe try to palm mute it just a little so that you can get the sound you need out?

Good idea. Thanks

Anyone else have any advice?
Last edited by robinlint at Aug 8, 2009,
#4
switch strings a lil more often :P
Quote by bambi_slaughter

what sound does a baby make when you put it in a blender?
i dunno, i was to busy masturba ting.

Quote by maroon5mustdie
EVH. I saw him in concert. And his brother was seriously the worst bass player I've ever seen.

Quote by operation ktulu
if my guitar had a pussy, i would never leave my room
#5
Well I have worked a little on my technique today. My open chords now sound warmer, my leads crisper, my palm muting better, and i've corrected my dynamics, which were too soft. But still my barre's sound awful. Anyone else care to watch the video, look at what bad habits i've developed that you recognise and i don't, and give me advice on how to fix it? (I recorded that video before i posted this. Perhaps i'll post a new one tomorrow.)
#8
going from an open chord to a barre is rough at first. Start slowly, make sure all the strings are ringing out. A good exercise is to set a timer for a minute and then practice going between 2 chords like an open G and a F barre. Don't go for speed at first, go for clarity. Also I noticed you lift your fingers a little too high off the fretboard when changing chords. You want to move your fingers as little as possible.
#9
Quote by robinlint
Care to elaborate on that?

im not sure what you can do about it. but ive done it to. just be aware of it. playing layed back in a lazyboy helped me get more comfortable playing maybe not the best for posture but i play better. loosen your grip on the pick. just suggestions, im no teacher. also learning basic theory helped me alot just knowing why what your playing sounds good or not, knowing how to make chords and how to find scales on the fretboard.
#11
Ok about your chords it's always important that your left thumb is on the right position, usually your thumb should be "hugging" the fretboard, your thumb is your support and if you don't have a support, your sound will be awful.
About your kind of "solo", well like everybody said, you have to switch your string, and also you are just playing the notes planely, I mean, you can make vibrato, maybe a little bending, just to give strenght to the notes.
I don't like your distortion, maybe your guitar volume was low, I recommend you always having the guitar volume at 10.
I think that's all I can say.
Keep working!
#12
First section of video, the chords.

When placing your fingers down for your chords, practice having them all fret at the same time. I noticed that every once and a while your first finger would land then followed by the rest, unless that is what you wanted.

On chords like C major, make sure the joint where your fingers meet your palm aren't muting the bottom string. You may need to lower your thumb a little bit behind the neck to help with that, if thats happening. Hard to really tell, but it looked like there could be just a little contact there.

All in all, nothing to really worry about. Sound pretty good.
Oh yeah, do you practice with your distortion on? When you really want to hear any hard to hear things, like a string accidentally being muted. You need to play on a clean tone.

Second section, the lead.

First thing i noticed was your middle finger tends to lift pretty high off the fret board sometimes, and i don't mean when your using vibrato. Other times it seems to be resting just fine above the strings. Same with your pinky, but that little guy is hard to train to stay close the the board.

When you are sliding up/down the neck, its sounds like you are rushing for the next note. Leaving the intended note kinda week. Maybe give it just a moment longer to pronounce itself a tad bit more.

Definitely slow it down and practice this section. You are very close to getting it. Just need to let your hands get a little bit more in sync with each other. The few frets you missed will also clean themselves up too while you are practicing it at a slower speed.

One of the other posters said they thought you looked a little tense. I didn't think you looked really tense, but your right shoulder looks like you could probably relax it some.

I only got up to the 5 minute mark at the moment. But honestly i didn't notice anything that isn't just practice related or just something to pay more attention to.
#13
The chordy stuff at the beginning - you just need some more practice to get your changes a bit more crisp. Nothing jumped out as being too horribly wrong.

The lead stuff. First, you've developed a bit of a bad habit of sliding up and down the neck when the intended note is a lot closer by if you were to just cross strings. A big part of playing lead successfully is finding the most economical way, movement wise, to get the notes out.

Your pinky seems under utilized, though you do use it some - so more of that. Another pinky note - it looks like you are fretting with the it's underside, rather than the tip. tip = good.

On to the picking hand. You are anchoring your wrist to the bridge. It is good that you are not overusing your elbow, but this anchoring is cutting down on your freedom of motion. The ideal motion is to use mostly wrist, combined with a little elbow. Or put another way - use your wrist for the motion used to pick one string, but use more elbow when crossing strings. This helps keep your hand "centered" on the string you are picking - so you don't have to vary your wrist angle to much as you cross strings.

The power-chordy part in the middle - right when you turn on the distortion. You are spending way too much energy with your picking hand. Focus on being relaxing a bit more, and using more economical strokes. Check out some vids of some more experienced players to get some hints.

One final note - lighten up a little. A couple of times during the vid you get visibly upset at yourself when you make a mistake. Chill out a bit. A big part of getting productive practice time is getting into that zone where you are immersed in what you are doing. You can't do that when you are getting annoyed at yourself. Remember, every good guitarist spent thousands of hours of practice to get to the point where they are (and many, many mistakes along the way!) - it definately doesn't happen over night. If anything, a few odd mistakes are just a sign that you are practicing material which is challenging you - a good thing! So, breath deep, and enjoy your practice time!

I hope some of this helped a little. Best of luck, and keep practicing
#14

im not sure what you can do about it. but ive done it to. just be aware of it. playing layed back in a lazyboy helped me get more comfortable playing maybe not the best for posture but i play better. loosen your grip on the pick. just suggestions, im no teacher. also learning basic theory helped me alot just knowing why what your playing sounds good or not, knowing how to make chords and how to find scales on the fretboard.

Thanks, i will try some of these things out


Ok about your chords it's always important that your left thumb is on the right position, usually your thumb should be "hugging" the fretboard, your thumb is your support and if you don't have a support, your sound will be awful.

Thanks, very helpful tip there


About your kind of "solo", well like everybody said, you have to switch your string, and also you are just playing the notes planely, I mean, you can make vibrato, maybe a little bending, just to give strenght to the notes.

You're right. But i haven't learnt good bending yet. I can bend a bit, but it sounds awful at some places on the fretboard.

I don't like your distortion, maybe your guitar volume was low, I recommend you always having the guitar volume at 10.

It's a solid state amp by VOX. If you thought that sucked (which i don't), wait till you hear it out of the JamVOX... with the presets i have in it, it sounds awful. Notes sustain much longer on the Vox amp than the JamVOX. I wonder why..
Not saying the JamVOX sucks, though. Just that the sound isn't as good as the solid state amp.


I think that's all I can say.
Keep working!

Thank you



First section of video, the chords.

When placing your fingers down for your chords, practice having them all fret at the same time. I noticed that every once and a while your first finger would land then followed by the rest, unless that is what you wanted.

In the beginning i did that to easily switch chords. Is it really a bad habit?


On chords like C major, make sure the joint where your fingers meet your palm aren't muting the bottom string. You may need to lower your thumb a little bit behind the neck to help with that, if thats happening. Hard to really tell, but it looked like there could be just a little contact there.

Yeah, some of the strings get muted when i play a C chord. Thanks for the tip there. Will try it out.


All in all, nothing to really worry about. Sound pretty good.
Oh yeah, do you practice with your distortion on? When you really want to hear any hard to hear things, like a string accidentally being muted. You need to play on a clean tone.

No. First i play on a high-action acoustic guitar, then electric guitar clean, THEN electric guitar distortion.


Second section, the lead.

First thing i noticed was your middle finger tends to lift pretty high off the fret board sometimes, and i don't mean when your using vibrato. Other times it seems to be resting just fine above the strings. Same with your pinky, but that little guy is hard to train to stay close the the board.

Ah, thanks for that. I didn't notice that my middle finger sometimes lifts too high.


When you are sliding up/down the neck, its sounds like you are rushing for the next note. Leaving the intended note kinda week. Maybe give it just a moment longer to pronounce itself a tad bit more.

Yes, my slides are weak and I don't fluidly slide to the next note, i'm working on it


Definitely slow it down and practice this section. You are very close to getting it. Just need to let your hands get a little bit more in sync with each other. The few frets you missed will also clean themselves up too while you are practicing it at a slower speed.

Practice what section? You mean the chords, improvising melodies, and power chords?


One of the other posters said they thought you looked a little tense. I didn't think you looked really tense, but your right shoulder looks like you could probably relax it some.

Thanks for the advice on the right shoulder.


I only got up to the 5 minute mark at the moment. But honestly i didn't notice anything that isn't just practice related or just something to pay more attention to.

Alright, thanks



The chordy stuff at the beginning - you just need some more practice to get your changes a bit more crisp. Nothing jumped out as being too horribly wrong.

Alright.


The lead stuff. First, you've developed a bit of a bad habit of sliding up and down the neck when the intended note is a lot closer by if you were to just cross strings. A big part of playing lead successfully is finding the most economical way, movement wise, to get the notes out.

I agree. But how do i find the next note in the scale on the next string? I keep playing horizontally because i do not know a reliable way to switch to another string and hit the right note. Is it true that the next note in the scale is always very close to the position you're playing? I mean, if i play a melody built with a C natural minor scale, if i play an E within the melody, the next note in the scale will be nearby on the next string, right? And is this always true?

Your pinky seems under utilized, though you do use it some - so more of that. Another pinky note - it looks like you are fretting with the it's underside, rather than the tip. tip = good.

Yesterday i noticed that too and worked on it. It caused a lot of muting and false notes. It also caused me to sometimes bend the note. Thanks for the information, though
I also slide a bit too much with my pinky, which doesn't sound very good.


On to the picking hand. You are anchoring your wrist to the bridge. It is good that you are not overusing your elbow, but this anchoring is cutting down on your freedom of motion. The ideal motion is to use mostly wrist, combined with a little elbow. Or put another way - use your wrist for the motion used to pick one string, but use more elbow when crossing strings. This helps keep your hand "centered" on the string you are picking - so you don't have to vary your wrist angle to much as you cross strings.

Thanks, i also will work on that.


The power-chordy part in the middle - right when you turn on the distortion. You are spending way too much energy with your picking hand. Focus on being relaxing a bit more, and using more economical strokes. Check out some vids of some more experienced players to get some hints.

Thanks for the information . Care to tell me where i can find those vids?


One final note - lighten up a little. A couple of times during the vid you get visibly upset at yourself when you make a mistake. Chill out a bit. A big part of getting productive practice time is getting into that zone where you are immersed in what you are doing. You can't do that when you are getting annoyed at yourself. Remember, every good guitarist spent thousands of hours of practice to get to the point where they are (and many, many mistakes along the way!) - it definately doesn't happen over night. If anything, a few odd mistakes are just a sign that you are practicing material which is challenging you - a good thing! So, breath deep, and enjoy your practice time!

Thanks . I was sometimes upset about the melodies that I improvised, i didn't like their sound.


I hope some of this helped a little. Best of luck, and keep practicing

It sure did. However it's 9 o'clock in the morning right now and i may start practicing 11 o'clock in the morning. (11:00 AM). So i haven't put what you have written to use yet.
Last edited by robinlint at Aug 9, 2009,
#15
^ Please read the post above before you read this one. Thanks

I've noticed that whenever i pick some notes usually some notes get muted because my thumb (and my index finger) touches them after i pick them. Is this because i am holding the pick wrong, in an angle that causes my thumb to be really close to the string? I've also noticed that it takes more effort to pick up than down. And when I pick, my hand bounces up and down. Next, i have noticed that when i play something, sometimes my palm touches it, also muting the strings. This is because i have anchored before and i'm trying to get rid of the anchoring. But how high should my hand be above the strings? And when i need to palm mute something, isn't it temporarily anchoring?

And then, my posture. I've noticed my posture isn't very good for playing barre chords. I sit with my right leg over my left leg, and rest my guitar on my right leg. I've noticed, though, that i don't have much vertical reach over the fretboard this way. Probably because my arms are too close or something. What is wrong with my posture?
Last edited by robinlint at Aug 9, 2009,
#16
I'm probably going to post a new video soon, the problem is i only have 10 minutes. Maybe i'll upload it in parts. I've worked on all the things you guys have said.
#17
Quote by robinlint
I agree. But how do i find the next note in the scale on the next string? I keep playing horizontally because i do not know a reliable way to switch to another string and hit the right note. Is it true that the next note in the scale is always very close to the position you're playing? I mean, if i play a melody built with a C natural minor scale, if i play an E within the melody, the next note in the scale will be nearby on the next string, right? And is this always true?
Personally, I think its pretty cool that you can play your scales single string confidently enough to improvise up and down the neck. Most people just learn box patterns to start with and end up stuck in one position. Your improv sounds pretty good to me - might be worth incorporating some hammer-ons and pull-offs in there too.

If you haven't already, I'd start practising playing scales 2nps and 3nps as well as single string. Once you get so you can play them straight up and down practice them in different patterns. Understanding how to find different intervals (especially unisons and octaves) on the neck is a good way of switching strings easily too - check out Freepower's 1st theory vid:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9OXv69rcko0
Last edited by zhilla at Aug 11, 2009,
#18
I'd suggest moving your hand back. Rest it on the bridge, or bridge pickup. Unless you have like, one spring and are in drop d or something, your trem shouldn't go on tune if you gently rest your hand on the bridge. You have much more control with your hand at the bridge then at the neck/neck pickup.
Quote by satchgear
I tried it out in store.

Great neck, nice n light, good tuning stability. Overall a good guitar. I didn't but it cause I generally only buy guitars over a grand now.
#19
If you're just touching the guitar with your hand I wouldn't worry - anchoring is when you put pressure on (however little pressure that may be) to use the part of your hand thats touching the guitar as a reference point. If you're worried read the anchoring section of the techniques FAQ (or re-read it ) to decide if you are still anchoring at all.

Posture-wise - watch Freepowers posture vid lol. You might find it easier if your guitar is more central or on your left leg rather than your right. Having said that, I generally cross my right leg over my left and rest my guitar on top - in fact that my default position if I'm learning something tricky. Mainly because my teacher sits like that - I copied him and it stuck lol.
#20
I know its gonna sound simple but: just practice and you will get better.
I assume you started playing guitar recently?
#21
Quote by zhilla
Personally, I think its pretty cool that you can play your scales single string confidently enough to improvise up and down the neck. Most people just learn box patterns to start with and end up stuck in one position. Your improv sounds pretty good to me - might be worth incorporating some hammer-ons and pull-offs in there too.

Thanks


If you haven't already, I'd start practising playing scales 2nps and 3nps as well as single string. Once you get so you can play them straight up and down practice them in different patterns.

Since I posted that question, i've somewhat solved it by learning vertical scale patterns, the boxed ones you are talking about (Before i did everything horizontally, i did it with boxed patterns and i indeed got stuck in the boxed patterns)
However, what extra benefits do 3nps scales have over the boxed patterns? Would they fit my horizontal playing more?


Understanding how to find different intervals (especially unisons and octaves) on the neck is a good way of switching strings easily too - check out Freepower's 1st theory vid:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9OXv69rcko0

Thanks, i've already learnt how to switch to a higher octave but not the unison. Probably it would also be very useful to have such an octave-finding trick for the 3rd and the 5th. Do you know of one?
#22
Quote by robinlint
However, what extra benefits do 3nps scales have over the boxed patterns? Would they fit my horizontal playing more?
The more different ways you practice something the better it tends to stick, but 3nps scales also have the advatage of making you stretch a bit, so you get more flexible, and they make you look at the intervals slightly differently to 2nps or single string scales, so you're likely to come up with different licks.
Quote by robinlint
Thanks, i've already learnt how to switch to a higher octave but not the unison. Probably it would also be very useful to have such an octave-finding trick for the 3rd and the 5th. Do you know of one?
5ths are easy - you know how to play a power chord right? Thats a 5th

4ths are the same fret for all strings apart from G/B strings, where that's a Maj 3rd

A Maj 3rd is a semitone less than a 4th, so on all strings except G/B strings its
--X-|----|-
----|--X-|-

A min 3rd is a semitone less than a Maj 3rd, so its
--X-|----|----|-
----|----|--X-|-
except for G/B
#23
The fifth is relatively easy, for example if you have the F# on the low E, then the C# on the A string will be the fifth.

* represents fret number

Low E *th fret, 5th = A string *+2 fret.
A *th fret, 5th = D string *+2 fret
D *th fret, 5th = G string *+2 fret
G *th fret, 5th = B string *+3 fret
B *th fret, 5th = high E string *+2 fret

Changes on the G string because the interval between G and B is different from the regular intervals on a standard tuned guitar.

I don't believe there is such a trick for finding the third, because the interval between the tonic and the third differs alot because of the frequent use of minor(3 half steps)/major(4 half steps) thirds.

:edit:
beaten to it...
zhilla's trick for the third will work, but you will have to know wether you're major or minor. ^^
Last edited by KoenDercksen at Aug 11, 2009,
#24
you have a large head.....maybe its gravity?
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#25
Quote by saladforkspear
you have a large head.....maybe its gravity?

So, great post. Very informative.

Don't come here with that just cause the pit is to much for you.
Last edited by epic7734 at Aug 11, 2009,
#26
Quote by epic7734

Originally Posted by saladforkspear
you have a large head.....maybe its gravity?

So, great post. Very informative.

Don't come here with that just cause the pit is to much for you.

Thanks.

I'll probably record a lot of video's tomorrow, because my dad won't be at home and the laptop will be available to me all day. I will probably upload some covers of songs, and another technique video.
Last edited by robinlint at Aug 11, 2009,
#27
To make you feel better, listen to my newest MP3. It's way sloppier than anything you've ever heard. looooolz.
98% of teens have been around or have had alcohol. Put this in your sig if you like bagels.
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#28
Well, instead of a video such as the one I posted before, i uploaded two covers of acoustic songs. They can be found here: http://www.youtube.com/robinlint

(They're the two newest covers. Hallelujah and Mary Lou. I think they suck.)

EDIT: I've removed them.
Last edited by robinlint at Aug 12, 2009,