Well, I have a simple problem(I hope). So, my cousin invited me to his house so we could jam. He's a very good drum player. He'd get a simple beat going and I just blank out. I have no idea what to do or where to start or where to search for lessons at online. I always get the opposite of what I want when I google search. Do I just alternate chords or something every time the bass drum is hit or something? I'm probably overthinking it all. I've been playing for 2 years, I can play whole songs without a problem. I can play the entire guitar solo of Floods by Pantera. I can play the solo to Goodnight Kiss without problem. I know all the basic chords and then some. I just don't understand wtf is going on! Halp? Advice?
maybe start with covering those songs, and creating jams that stray off but are similar to the song once you are comfortable.
play what you feel like playing.
just play without thinking and you'll discover the style thats really your style.

whenever i do this i just come to a funky rock riff bit a la peppers style.
or do as funk monk said; start with some covers and go from there to own arrangements.
I used to do writing sessions with a drummer from one band. He was a good guy and suggested I jam something on acoustic and he'd fit what I was doing if it was conventional type stuff. We worked that way a lot as he was also a good wordsmith and several songs got written in his TV room.
If your drummer just lays down a beat, he's pretending to be a drum machine and will probably let you get going and add in more when he senses you are comfortable.
Usually a bass is better to do this with, along with a drummer, as a bassist is used to providing something for guitar to twiddle over.
For now, just relax, play some 12-bar blues to break the log-jam.
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It sounds like the drummer is leading the jam and asking you to come up with something there and then which is daunting and for me at least does create a creative block.

Try coming up with some riffs/ chord progressions on your own and play them for him next time you jam. Then start bouncing the ideas off each other with regards to tempo, beat etc. I usually find this approach gets better results and is more fun than just pulling stuff out of the air there and then.

Try different things and see what ways work for you.
Just make some riffs at your house, just messing around, seeing what sounds good together.
Once you have a headfull of ideas, just string things together. Jamming really is just trying out ideas with another musician, so do just that. Try stuff out, if it doesn't sound good, keep messing around until it does. It's not hard.
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just play the 12 bar blues or just hit random powerchords, that should get you started
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I've tired single guitar and drums sessions before. It's not comfortable. You're basically stuck with playing either generic as possible blues riffs or going into some eight minute freeform jazz odyssey. To get anything else sounding good you really do need either a bass player or fialing that, at least another guitar player.

So my advice: get more people.
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about 2 years ago, i was in a band that wanted to do A Day To Remember type of stuff, and for a while, it was alright, but then everybody quit except for me and the drummer. we were left on our own. it was quite uncomfortable, but we still figured out how to jam rhythm on rhythm. (I'm a rhythm guitarist, i don't play a lot of leads normally). It's possible, but just play whatever shows up in your head. eventually, it'll come out sounding ok.
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Also jamming doesn't have to start with the drummer. If you've got good rhythm, get a good progression going and let the drummer then join in. If h/she is good they'll pickup on your timing and rythm and add to it.
As the the other points mentioned, yes two pieces is pretty sparce! 3 really is a minimum be it another GP, bassist or keyboard player. If you want to hear a bare bones jam, you should've heard my old band's basist and drummer jamming away one day! That was sparce!
Moving on.....
One thing that ties in with everything else that has been said here, is really just a (temporary) lack of confidence. You probably felt as if you were put on the spot and you just froze up. So, if that is the case, just kinda "kick the door down" so to speak. Not to imply that you should just crash into the scene... I don't know, I guess just get in there and get over the awkwardness. Before you know it you'll be cooperating and having a good time.

I guess I'm just speaking from my own experience. I had been playing for almost three years when I first tried to jam with a drummer and in hindsight, that's what I just had to do. I felt stupid, and then we slipped into a little progression and before I knew it we were bouncing ideas around and having a blast. There were three of us, so it wasn't as sparce. Two guitars and a drummer, a bass player would have been fun but whatever...
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Try to think of something that you want to play and go from there. Start with a simple song just to get things going. Years ago while I worked as a cruise ship photographer I would get together with another guitar player and we would jam in the lab. Mostly we just did blues jams and alternate between playing rythym and lead. With just a drummer it would be more difficult but you should be able to get something going. See if you can get another person to join you maybe a bass, another guitar or a keyboard.

Another option would be to get a looper pedal and get the rythym part recorded with the looper and they play the lead.
Last edited by stujomo at Jun 4, 2010,