#1
Hey guys, bit of a story here

So i'm 15 years of age, and i have been playing guitar for about a year and a half now, i've aquired a couple guitars, a nice little practice and amp and i need a cabinet for my head, which i should be getting in a few months, i hope so anyway

I've formed a band with a friend of mine but we still need a drummer, but that's not the point

I listen to the following

Dissection
Deicide
Morbid Angel
Nile
Dark Funeral
Blind Guardian
Yngwie Malmsteen

And i have no idea what i want to do anymore

I would like to write music similair to blind guardians, their more melodic work anyway, full of great melodies and vocal lines, beautiful, flowing guitar solos and rock solid rhythms, but i have no idea how to go about this

I have tried writing my own music, and each time it has come out absolutely terrible, and very bad, no where near as great as what i would like it to be

I know a little theory, and i have learn't a few songs by my favorite bands on guitar, but i just don't know where to go anymore

I have no idea how my favourite bands write their songs and how they know what they can play to create, i don't know anything about scales, save the Major scale and it's modes, i have no idea what scales Blind Guardian uses and,worst of all, i don't know how to write a solo over a rhythm in key

I've lost a lot of interest in playing and i feel as though i will always be working some dead end, 10$ an hour job, begging for work so as to afford each opus that my favorite bands release as they tour the world, being known for their epic work

I just don't know what to learn, how to go about learning it, and i've just lost most of the interest i once had in learning new things on guitar and hoping that i can one day play in a '' successful '' band

I am typing this in the hope that i may receive some advice
#2
Learn scales and shapes and chords. Learn more songs that you like and study them. Don't just play tabs without thinking the 'why'.

Can you play along to a simple radio song, make your own melodies or solo on top of it?

There's tons of stuff you can learn.
#3
i think u are expecting too much out of urself. when i was playing for 1.5 years, i played simple stuff like green day, guns and roses, some metallica, blues. it was easy and fun to learn. dont expect ur self to play like yngwie malmsteen when u've only been playing for 1.5 years. im guessing u like metal so start with simple stuff like metallica, megadeth etc. then when u think u are good enough, move on to the shred, technical death metal stuff.
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Fender Blues Junior III Humholdt
#4
Your 15 years of age lol.
If you are own a half-stack to be, you're doing better than most of us.
learn to solo over keys.
I recommend watching harmony and theory videos, lick library does great ones.
Find a 12 bar blues track on youtube and solo the pentatonic scale to get ya started.
Then find a C major track, learn or create some licks in C major.
It's not all that difficult.
Just find the notes, and organise them.
I'm pretty new to it myself but have already wrote a few cool licks.
On playing the Paul Gilbert signature at the guitar store extensively, my missus sighed:
"Put it down now, It's like you love that guitar more than me!"
In Which I replied.
"Well it has got two F-Holes!"
#5
Syd Barrett was a lost guitarist.

I would like to play like David Gilmour. So I have put in time and practice to learn the Comfortably Numb solo (~60% done). It started off badly but now it's listenable. And that's 8 years of guitar playing time (not all spent on the solo obviously, just most).

You need to practice... you can't write songs brilliantly from day one (unless you're Paul McCartney). And being in a successful band - everyone here wants to be a rock star but how many of us are? I sure as hell am not - I am an engineer. Not everyone gets their break dude.

I suggest referring to genuine guitar heroes such as Gilmour (yes he's first on the list), Page, Hendrix, May, Clapton, BB King, Jeff Beck, Peter Green, etc and see where today's guitarists got their inspiration.

What you don't get told is that when bands record an album, they might have 20, 30 or more tracks that have been written for the record. However, most of them are rubbish. It's only the best 10 or so that make the cut.

Yngwie Malmsteen has recorded many, many lessons on technical things like sweep picking, chord structures, etc, you may want to have a look.

BTW, you're 15, so don't whinge about your earnings! When I started at McDonald's (yes I know) in 2003 I was 14 and earned $5.22/hour. My 'pay rise' upon turning 15 was to $6.31/hour (which was almost exactly my mum's weekly wage in 1976). Anyway, how can you talk about a dead end job - you go to SCHOOL.

Here's some free advice: get some fcuking perspective kid, and quit your whinging. Get you chin up and put the razorblade down.
Marshall amplifiers are the truest purveyors of rock and roll known to man.

"And give a man an amplifier and a synthesizer, and he doesn't become whoever, you know. He doesn't become us."

Holy crap, check this out!
#6
^ I was saying that i don't want to end up as an 30 year old man working a dead end job, scraping together enough to buy my favourite bands CD's every third week

Read between the lines dude, you don't need to finish your post off with the ass hole attitude
#7
You'll be fine, just get an education.
Brain r impotent 2 sucssess
On playing the Paul Gilbert signature at the guitar store extensively, my missus sighed:
"Put it down now, It's like you love that guitar more than me!"
In Which I replied.
"Well it has got two F-Holes!"
#8
damn, this was irritating to read... don't think you can write melodies without at least an okay theory knowledge(well some people can, lucky prodigies ...you're obviously not one) , there are rules to writing which when followed make your stuff sound good. Learn some scales and go buy a theory book. and dude... seriously, you've been playing a year and a half!
#9
Quote by ShredHead396
^ I was saying that i don't want to end up as an 30 year old man working a dead end job, scraping together enough to buy my favourite bands CD's every third week

Read between the lines dude, you don't need to finish your post off with the ass hole attitude


If you can't afford the CDs, don't buy them! Spend your money on more essential things, like food. Or, do us a favour and don't.

And it's not asshole attitude - it's HONEST. Who cares whether or not you're a good songwriter - it's (almost) certainly not going to be your career, and it should just be a bit of fun.

SCHOOL is important! Go to school, work hard, get a good Yr 12 score and then go to UNI. Them you won't have to worry about working a dead end job when you're 30.

Start at the beginning - you can't hope to pick a guitar and suddenly write like Malmsteen. You have to start writing like, i dunno, Bob Dylan. Very, very simple music (lyrics are another matter of course), but he was hugely popular at one point. Or perhaps BJ (hehe) Armstrong, he writes pretty simple songs but shit he's successful.

And you must have some money, if you have half a half stack and guitars... when I was 15 I had a second hand Ibanez G something guitar (absolute trash) and the amp that went with it (even worse). Even if I'd wanted to, I couldn't have even considered playing live. You are actually well equipped for a 15 year old. Becasue I worked hard in school and uni, I'm now an engineer and can afford nice gear, so I have a Marshall stack and other amps and a few guitars, and a nice car, etc etc, but that sure as shit doesn't happen overnight! You have to work at these things! I sure as hell did, for lots of years. You have to practice to become proficient at anything.

Come on dude. Cheer up, the world isn't that bad a place. Seriously, get some perspective. I realise that you're very young and you have yet to experience an awful lot of things, but you must realise that's more to life than whether or not you're a good songwriter.

I hope you don't think this is arse hole speak again, but it's my opinion.
Marshall amplifiers are the truest purveyors of rock and roll known to man.

"And give a man an amplifier and a synthesizer, and he doesn't become whoever, you know. He doesn't become us."

Holy crap, check this out!
#10
Quote by seemeel
If you can't afford the CDs, don't buy them! Spend your money on more essential things, like food. Or, do us a favour and don't.

And it's not asshole attitude - it's HONEST. Who cares whether or not you're a good songwriter - it's (almost) certainly not going to be your career, and it should just be a bit of fun.

SCHOOL is important! Go to school, work hard, get a good Yr 12 score and then go to UNI. Them you won't have to worry about working a dead end job when you're 30.

Start at the beginning - you can't hope to pick a guitar and suddenly write like Malmsteen. You have to start writing like, i dunno, Bob Dylan. Very, very simple music (lyrics are another matter of course), but he was hugely popular at one point. Or perhaps BJ (hehe) Armstrong, he writes pretty simple songs but shit he's successful.

And you must have some money, if you have half a half stack and guitars... when I was 15 I had a second hand Ibanez G something guitar (absolute trash) and the amp that went with it (even worse). Even if I'd wanted to, I couldn't have even considered playing live. You are actually well equipped for a 15 year old. Becasue I worked hard in school and uni, I'm now an engineer and can afford nice gear, so I have a Marshall stack and other amps and a few guitars, and a nice car, etc etc, but that sure as shit doesn't happen overnight! You have to work at these things! I sure as hell did, for lots of years. You have to practice to become proficient at anything.

Come on dude. Cheer up, the world isn't that bad a place. Seriously, get some perspective. I realise that you're very young and you have yet to experience an awful lot of things, but you must realise that's more to life than whether or not you're a good songwriter.

I hope you don't think this is arse hole speak again, but it's my opinion.


No, this time i like and agree with mostly everything that you said, bar a couple things

Here is what i didn't really like

Quote by seemeel
it's (almost) certainly not going to be your career, and it should just be a bit of fun.

.


Sorry, i just find that uninspiring and downright, gutless

Who's to say it certainly will not be my career? or anyone elses career? damn man, your telling me to hold my chin up and you'll just throw out a statement like that? that could be a contributing factor to the fact that your band has never taken off, assuming you are in one.

And that was not meant to sound offensive,

Quote by seemeel
You have to start writing like, i dunno, Bob Dylan. Very, very simple music (lyrics are another matter of course)


Well, i'm not going to dumb it RIGHT down, but i'll try to simplify my next musical creation, assuming i do sit down to write again

Quote by seemeel
Spend your money on more essential things, like food. Or, do us a favour and don't.



If you meant what i think you did by this, who the hell do you think you are, saying something like that?


I appreciate the advice but so far, no-one has helped point me in the direction of what i can do next, to advance my knowledge so i can write music like Blind Guardians


No '' learn scales '' thanks, i want to know what scales
#11
You are very young and there's still lots of time to grow and create.

Though I am going to be honest. I believe there are 2 types of musicians- those who can play absolutely anything- they know theory, scales, chords, keys, play by ear etc, etc. You can ask this guitarist to learn/play a tune and they blow you away with their knowledge. But ask them to write something original, something good and worth listening to, and they can't.

Then there's the songwriter- the person who can come up with something that works, something that inspires other musicians and helps them write amazing parts. The hook, the parts that keep you interested.

There are some in betweens with mixtures of both qualities, but in general I think bands need to have atleast one of each musician. It's a good formula.
#12
^ I liked that , but how does it contribute to the thread, other than being suprisingly intelligent?
#13
Learn the two basic scales first (Major, natural minor(Aeolian mode)) thereafter most 'scales' are just derived from those. Then pick up a theory book. (The ones that move on grades, but start on grade one.. melody writing starts at 3 or 4 but you need the knowledge of the previous grades.
#14
you need EXPERIENCE. You can't just read a book or watch a video and suddenly write professionally. You have to put in the TIME (and I'm talking 5 or 10 years AT LEAST) before you will be able to do that sort of thing.

Bob Dylan's done okay for himself by dumbing it right down. He has been a major figure in popular music for five decades. He's released over 50 records, and sold more than 35 million albums in the US alone, and probably that many again internationally. That's at least a few more than you. So why don't you check your ego at the door mate? I'm pretty sure it's you asking for tips?

And yes you DO have to start at the beginning! When you learn to drive (well, not yet for you) you don't start in a race car do you? Or even a fast street car? No, you start in something slow, easy and simple, and THEN work up to faster, harder things.

Your problem is that you want it all, and you want it now. (Who said that in a song? don't ask Google! I'll know if you cheated)

And as for my statement regarding songwriting not being your career - how is it gutless? It's the damn truth! And if you open your damn eyes you will see that I wrote "(almost) certainly" - so don't accuse of saying things I didn't, especially when they're there in print.

And as for my 'band' never taking off - I haven't really pursued more than the occasional gig here and there, because I did UNIVERSITY, which takes up a fair bit of time! I don't have a set band, more just a group of friends with whom I occasionally jam. Now that i'm done with uni that will change, but that's another story.

As for music being fun - in my view, you have to do it for FUN, and if you're lucky, you get paid at the same time. If it's not fun, then you shouldn't be doing it. Unlike engineering, music is an ART - you can't learn everything. You have to figure out a lot of it for yourself.

And regarding the don't eat food comment - yeah i meant it. But how did I mean it?

You want to know what scales, okay: pentatonic scales. learn the modes of scales: Dorian, Phrygian, Lydian, Mixolydian, Aeolian, Ionian and Locrian. Learn some RIFFS. Like from Money for Nothing.

Anyway, I'm sick of arguing with you. You should take our advice without thinking every sentence is a personal attack. I'd rather teach a girl to drive. Yeah, I know. It's like banging your head against a brick wall. Yes I've all three.
Marshall amplifiers are the truest purveyors of rock and roll known to man.

"And give a man an amplifier and a synthesizer, and he doesn't become whoever, you know. He doesn't become us."

Holy crap, check this out!
#15
Quote by seemeel
you need EXPERIENCE. You can't just read a book or watch a video and suddenly write professionally. You have to put in the TIME (and I'm talking 5 or 10 years AT LEAST) before you will be able to do that sort of thing.

Bob Dylan's done okay for himself by dumbing it right down. He has been a major figure in popular music for five decades. He's released over 50 records, and sold more than 35 million albums in the US alone, and probably that many again internationally. That's at least a few more than you. So why don't you check your ego at the door mate? I'm pretty sure it's you asking for tips?

And yes you DO have to start at the beginning! When you learn to drive (well, not yet for you) you don't start in a race car do you? Or even a fast street car? No, you start in something slow, easy and simple, and THEN work up to faster, harder things.

Your problem is that you want it all, and you want it now. (Who said that in a song? don't ask Google! I'll know if you cheated)

And as for my statement regarding songwriting not being your career - how is it gutless? It's the damn truth! And if you open your damn eyes you will see that I wrote "(almost) certainly" - so don't accuse of saying things I didn't, especially when they're there in print.

And as for my 'band' never taking off - I haven't really pursued more than the occasional gig here and there, because I did UNIVERSITY, which takes up a fair bit of time! I don't have a set band, more just a group of friends with whom I occasionally jam. Now that i'm done with uni that will change, but that's another story.

As for music being fun - in my view, you have to do it for FUN, and if you're lucky, you get paid at the same time. If it's not fun, then you shouldn't be doing it. Unlike engineering, music is an ART - you can't learn everything. You have to figure out a lot of it for yourself.

And regarding the don't eat food comment - yeah i meant it. But how did I mean it?

You want to know what scales, okay: pentatonic scales. learn the modes of scales: Dorian, Phrygian, Lydian, Mixolydian, Aeolian, Ionian and Locrian. Learn some RIFFS. Like from Money for Nothing.

Anyway, I'm sick of arguing with you. You should take our advice without thinking every sentence is a personal attack. I'd rather teach a girl to drive. Yeah, I know. It's like banging your head against a brick wall. Yes I've all three.



I could point out the scattered potholes in this reply, but i can't and won't be bothered if your going to get stressed out over it

Go teach a girl to drive then, i really wont mind, but for your comment on the scales, i know the minor pentatonic shape, i know all of the major modes, and i shall startworking on learning more riffs and melodies, the day after next

Thanks for the contribution, have a great day man
#16
Don't worry about the modes. I'm 90% sure tat the "modes" you've learned are just different positions for the major scale. Modes are a whole different ball game.

Don't worry much about your ability. You've been playing for 1.5 years. You've got plenty of time to figure stuff out.
^^The above is a Cryptic Metaphor^^


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#17
Hey Man!
Don't be discouraged first off. You’ve reached what sounds like the first, and what will be of MANY plateaus in your playing. Sometime you just reach a level, and the next level is hard to reach without a lot of hard work.
By reading over what you listen to, you have a pretty high bar set as far as theory and stuff goes! It’ll take you a while to learn this stuff, so don’t be discouraged if you don’t get it over night.
Here’s an exercise someone made me do when I was first learning to write songs, and I think it’ll help you a lot.

1. As Eddy~ said earlier dissect no less than 5 of your favorite songs. Study how they put together the chord progressions, how the drums, bass, and other instruments affect the song, and how they implement those techniques. Study where the intro, verse, chorus and so on are placed, and study how long the songs are.

2. Now pick five songs that you absolutely hate, but are famous anyway. This will be different for each person (I picked U2 songs) but it will absolutely help your song writing. Since you’re going to despise the song, you’ll dissect it at a much more critical level (and unfortunately see how similar it is to the songs you love!)

3. Now rip off a few of your favorite songs. Don’t try and be creative, but basically rewrite these songs. Use the same chord progressions; melody, etc. but still make it your own. You’ll be surprised at how original it sounds in the end.

Continue to study theory. As I said before the artists you named know a ridiculous amount about chords, chord theory, scales, technique, etc.
Hope this helped, and good luck!
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#18
^ Great answer, friend!

I truly do appreciate that method, and i WILL be trying it in the coming days

#19
IMO being a good guitarist is being able to convey a mood or state through your playing and your music.

So learn about music get a wide grasp on different ideas.

play chords/scales/arpeggios while thinking about the state they put you in.

imagine a picture when you play them.

Then when you feel inspired (I.E. in a highly emotional state) try making up something worthwhile.
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#20
People have given pretty good answers so far, also, I say learn to read music
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