#1
So, when I play lead, I feel like I can hit the contours of the song's rhythm fairly well. My phrasing is decent (I mean, within the context of 1.5 year newb).

But my strumming rhythm-rhythm is not at that level. I get that it takes practice, but is this common? I guess it's easier to control single notes-double stops rhythmically than it is longer, patterned strums.

Anyone else in the same boat?
#2
hey man I know what you mean... when I was at about a year into guitar I had only really been working on trying to solo, you know learning how to play fast and different techniques, and realized that I couldn't really play rhythm.

Then I realized something, even if I can reach the top, and become the worlds greatest shreder ever, it doesn't matter if I can't play rhythm. so I asked my guitar teacher how to improve with rhythm... it seems really easy but it's litterally just some muted chord exercises.

Just try these, preferably with a metronome. set the metronome to about 90bpm, your not trying to improve speed so we don't have to go too low, but you don't really want to go to fast. then just mute your strings and play quarter notes and cound with it (seriously counting helps). one, two, three, four....

after you get that down move to the next exercise which is the same but with eighth notes (still counting). one and, two and, three and, four and...

then try with triplets. one trip-let, two trip-let, three trip-let, four trip-let...

then try a combination. one and, two, three trip-let, four.... (this is just an example, you can combine them how you want)

after that go trough each one with rests on every third note.
Q: one, two, rest, four....
E: one and, rest and, three rest, four and...
T: one trip-rest, two trip-rest, three trip-rest, four trip-rest...

also try these with chords, only use simple chords, the more complex ones can be used later, no need to over complicate when you are trying to learn something.

another good way to learn is to listen to the drums in a song and try to mimic the drums rhythm with muted chords...

hope this helps...
#3
Thanks man - definitely great advice. I actually do those things and am getting better at metronome rhythm and strumming patterns.

where I fall apart is real musical situations with someone singing. I cannot keep a rhythm to that or a backing tracking with vocals.

meaning, real music rhythms versus very programmatic metronome rhythms.

The lyrics always eff me up and I lose my pattern and timing.
#4
sometimes it helps to play along to the actual song but make sure your amp is turned up nice and loud because you don't want the song to mask what your playing. You want to be able to hear clearly what you are playing and be able to identify any mistakes.
#5
Quote by grushka
Thanks man - definitely great advice. I actually do those things and am getting better at metronome rhythm and strumming patterns.

where I fall apart is real musical situations with someone singing. I cannot keep a rhythm to that or a backing tracking with vocals.

meaning, real music rhythms versus very programmatic metronome rhythms.

The lyrics always eff me up and I lose my pattern and timing.


I had exactly the same problem as you. I used to practise soloing almost to the exclusion of any rhythm work, and the latter really suffered because of it.

It took me a couple of years to get my rhythm playing up to par. For me the trick was to not to try and complicate things. Simply playing to the beat usually tends to sound best. At first I didn't want to admit to this, and thought it was boring.

You've gotta remember that rhythm is about being solid, playing to the beat. You want to create a `groove'. Start off tapping your foot, feel the rhythm. Tapping your foot will anchor you, and should make you a bit more `resilient' to vocals, if you see what I mean.

Go find that groove. Example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=amU3ssaIwec
#6
Quote by grushka
Thanks man - definitely great advice. I actually do those things and am getting better at metronome rhythm and strumming patterns.

where I fall apart is real musical situations with someone singing. I cannot keep a rhythm to that or a backing tracking with vocals.

meaning, real music rhythms versus very programmatic metronome rhythms.

The lyrics always eff me up and I lose my pattern and timing.

For situations in which someone is going to be singing, I tend to ease up on my rhythm. by that I mean to get really easy with it, try to make it so that the guitar is a much simpler progression. like ill play something like this:

|:| G/ /Em / / || C/ Am/ C/ // || D/ C/ Am D || G/ C G/ // |:|

each || signals the end of a measure...

then when the vocals come in I'll "ease back" with something like this:

|:| G/ // / / || C/ // // // || D/ // / / || G/ / // // |:|

This may not sound too good, im at work away from my guitar, and it's main purpose is to show a more complicated chord progression being changed to something more simple...

I keep the striking pattern but clean up the changes, so I'm not competing with the vocalist, or the lead guitar during a solo... It keeps the meledy but also makes it simple enough for someone else to grab the attention of the listener.
#7
Thanks guys, this is some subtle stuff I can't find anywhere else. Appreciate the answers, gonna work on these.