im 16 and have been playing for about 3 years now. im not a bad player if i say so myself, i can play eruption, master of puppets, and im working on arpeggios from hell by yngwie. im in a pretty good band and we play alot of slayer and anthrax. and we have written a few originals.
anyway. all i really know about guitar theory is the basics. the notes that make chords so i can move them and make suspended and augmented chord shapes and so on, the basic scales (pentatonics and blues, some aeolian). pretty much what you need to be able to write a little bit of your own material.
i really just work on my technique. everyday i run through the scales i know, do some warm ups and exercises that ive created or by guitarists like joe satriani or steve vai and this has made me get much better over the years, even on a monthly basis.
so my opinion on guitar theory would be that its not really neccesary to work at and try to master throughout your playing career. any different takes on this?
1, it's not just guitar theory, it's music theory. it doesn't just apply to the guitar
2. many get to a certain point and realize they DO need music theory
3. different things work for different people, so it doesn't matter what your view is
Quote by AA00P
Listen to the man, he's Jewish.
It's not necessary to be a crazy good player, or even an amazing player, you'll just be doing things that you don't know much about or why they're working well together.

While it's not necessary (coming from someone who HATED theory with a passion for years), it is tremendously helpful if you can get your mind to work that way.
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Quote by Hydra150
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well i don't think learning more could hurt you so I say if you ever have a chance to learn something new on guitar, or really anything I'd say go for it.
its not necessary but VERY helpful if you learn it correctly. check out my site in my sig, see if any of it applies to you.
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Maybe shagging Mark Knopfler, but that's about it.
I don't think you should through around the term career after 3 years of playing.

And by the way, all those things you say helped you without you learning theory where written by people who are nothing short of 'da bomb' when it comes to theory. Something to think about eh
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As a guitarist, trying to better should be a major goal of yours. So why wouldn't you try to learn everything possible.

Theory is exceptionally useful, especially in a band situation where you have to communicate your ideas to other people with different instruments.
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Quote by crisisinheaven
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Well.. you've said nothing about ears, so I think I'll be the first to talk about it.

Theory is important, deadly important, but ears are just as important on the same token. If you don't got magic ears, you don't got nothin'. Theory can save you in some cases, but I find that theory only really augments your ear..

I'll explain a little because I'm a glutton for explaining things. Say you really know your theory but have a bad ear. You know what chord progression is playing because you were told about it beforehand. However, you can only follow this progression because you know about the timing. If someone just decided to pick one random part out, you might not actually know what chords are playing.

Houston, we've got a problem!

If you have a bad ear and only good theory, you can't really apply it. You might want to harmonize a solo's notes with the chord progression that's playing, but you can't really do that if you got a bad ear. All these chord intervals could be playing but you really have no idea what to play along with it because you just don't know what's being played.

Anyway, I could totally be missing the mark here and you might actually have a good ear. I only thought that I should throw this out there just in case you didn't know.

Quote by TK1
its not necessary but VERY helpful if you learn it correctly.


Theory means absolutely nothing unless you learn how to apply it to the guitar. Nobody will be impressed if you can name 500 chords but you can't play a chord progression to save your life.
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Junior's usually at least a little terse, but he knows his stuff. I've always read his posts in a grouchy grandfather voice, a grouchy grandfather with a huge stiffy for alternate picking.
Besides that, he's right this time. As usual.