#1
Hi everybody. Just got a quick question I would like to get your opinions on so I thank you for any responses in advance. I have been a drummer/keyboardist for quiate a long time. These are my primary instruments and I love them, but I'll be the first to admit I have not "mastered" either and continue to try to advance in them to this today. A couple years ago I started playing guitar which I also love everything about but also find very challenging. I had a teacher for a while when I could afford it and was making progress. Right now I'm trying to teach myself as much as I can and am still making some progress. I have enough musical background to grasp the basic concepts and enough self discipline to practice. However, my time is kind of limited. I still practive drums and keys because that is what I make the most advancements in per time spent. However, I love guitar too much to let it go completely. Right now I squeeze in about 20 minutes a day on guitar, mostly working on scales, arpegios, chord excercises, and the occasional song. I am commited to learning the guitar but not at the expense of dropping my primary instruments completely to devote all my practice time to it. I'm not looking to get Jimi Hendrix good but just to be good. So what I am proposing is this. Obviously the more you practice the better you get. I'm going to try to take the slowburn phillosophy with guitar and practice what I can when I can, even if it is just 20 minutes a day for the next 10 years. It kinds of feels like digging a tunnel with a spoon but I am a committed and patient. Has anyone else tried to approach guitar training like this and how did it work out?
#2
As long as you make those 20 minutes regularly every day, and you are focused on what you are doing, and setting goals, you will get better faster than someone who wanks around 8 hours a day inconsistently just noodling.
Most of my grindcore inspiration comes from my hard drive.
#3
make sure your doing what you need to be practicing and it should be fine. maybe alternate days so you get closer to an hour of guitar on some days?

just make sure your actually practicing and not fiddling around and you should see progress, although keep in mind that with only 20 minutes a day its not going to be alot of progress.
#4
I have sort of been in your shoes. I have had periods where pratice was hard to fit in because of other commitments. If I were to give you any advice it would be to focus.

If you try work on scales, arpegios, chord excercises, and the occasional song in a single pratice session you might be overstreching yourself given the time slot.
Instead I think you should dedicate your pratice on a single aspect you want to improve, it really worked for me at least when I was short on time.

For example you can work out a schedule, so you focus on chords for two weeks, then scale for another two weeks, and so on.

This approached worked for me when I was very busy.

Edit: I can see people above have said similar things while I as typing - must learn to type faster!
Last edited by Fender Dane. at Jun 12, 2010,
#5
Personally, I think 20 minutes isn't really enough time to do anything. What I suggest is you work on a different instrument every day. Then you can spend a few hours on it at once and get a good warm up in as well as a good practice routine.
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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.
#6
20 minutes isn't a lot of time. I teach guitar and recommend a minimum of 30 minutes per day. Even then, progress is slow. I can tell the difference when a student doesn't put enough time into their lesson. 20 minutes each day won't make you a Clapton, but you will eventually become good enough to do chords and some basic lead. Learning scales is one thing, but being able to apply it and make it into music is something that takes work.
#7
Well, I definately think you can make progress, especially if you find a way to push it to 30-40 mins. At times when I've had a lot going on, I've still been able to progress with this amount of time. Too many days off will hurt your progress a lot more than not having a very long practice on a given day.
Also, being experienced with the keyboard and drums gives you an enormous head start. You already have left hand dexterity from the keys, and rhythm and timing from both the drums and the keyboards, not to mention the overall development as a musician from both. So you are way ahead of a person who has been playing guitar only for 2 years, and in key areas that take years to develop. A lot of what you will be doing is "translating" skills you already have from the other instruments to the guitar.
If you find you want to develop your guitar playing faster, one thing you could try is to take turns which instrument gets the heavy practice. For example, two instruments get the basic 30 mins/day minimum, while you go hell for leather on the third. Then after maybe a month, it's another instruments turn to get the heavy practice, and so on.
#8
As long as you have fun. To me, your idea sounds a bit like turning guitar playing into a chore, 20 minutes a day, everyday. What if you don't feel like playing one day? Still playing 20 minutes won't get you very far if you don't enjoy it. But as long as you have fun, thats all that matter.'

I'm not the best guitar player, but I have lots of fun every time I play, and to me, that's all that matters.