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#1
So i hear this alot: Be a musician, not just a guitarist. I kinda get it, but not really. Wouldnt being a good guitar player make you a good misician, since its an instrument? What would you guys consider the biggest differences between a good guitar player and a good musician?
Last edited by Usernames sucks at Jun 11, 2011,
#2
Perhaps that musicians can create, or transpose music.
Guitar players can play it.
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!"
#3
being a good guitarist does not make you a good musician. An easy way for me to understand it is, do i want to be like chris broderick or like marty friedman? Chris is a better guitarist but he doesnt have the musicianship that marty has.

well thats how i can see the difference, dont know how youll see it.
#4
a good muscician understands what he's doing. he knows what hes doing that makes it sound good. and in my opinion plays more than one instrument, which for a good musician would be pretty easy. guitarist just play guitar. just what i think
My sig? Nice.
#5
i would say knowing music makes u a musician. knowing songs makes u a copycat. but knowing songs is how u identify with non-musicians they never do care what u write unless they want to **** u
#6
A musician can observe a piece of music, and understand how it works and how understanding of the song can be applied to others. They can also because of this, compose music if they wanted to.

A guitarist merely plays the songs with no understanding of how it works.
Praise the Z-Dog, my DADDY
#7
Quote by bustapr
Chris is a better guitarist but he doesnt have the musicianship that marty has.

well thats how i can see the difference, dont know how youll see it.



Wow you couldn't be more wrong if you tried. Marty Friedman tells people the relative major of C minor is D#. You really are wrong, in so many ways. I'll post chapter and verse on this. I'm not even talking about guitar skills. Chris absolutely SMOKES most guys out there in terms of theory and musicianship and certainly MF.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkpZ645ztl0

"That was a VI V i in E minor"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRgjCi8OUR4

"Its got a Neapolitan chord and an Augmented 3 chord...and a diminished 7th..."

"It's got a VI V/V and then 1st inversion I"

Yeah he doesn't have the Musicianship of Marty...

Certainly Marty...Marty's great but hahaha I hope you weren't being a troll because if you are you got me good!

Sean
Last edited by Sean0913 at Jun 11, 2011,
#8
I think the statement initially proposed is a bit faulty to begin with.

I would say, to be defined as a good guitarist, you'd have to be a good musician.
While most people are assuming a "good guitarist" is one who's good with technique and playing the instrument, I think it's hard to be good at any instrument without also being a good musician.

Similarly, I'd expect a good musician to be proficient at their main instrument (though as "musician" is a much broader term, I'd expect a good musician to be skilled at more than one instrument.)
#9
In my opinion a good musician is good in ... yeah music. Understanding chords and scales (mind that understanding and knowing are not equal), being able to hear more than just the obvious in a song. A good test to know if you understand chords and scales is to sing along with a song you never heard before from the first or second time
A musician will be more likely to play more instruments, 'cause understanding music makes it easier to pick up with new instruments. Every good musician should be able to write correct music. Good music is totally something else
A good guitarist has much knowledge about the guitar ... off course. But is not necessarily a good musician. A guitarist can just learn all scales and chords without understanding them and learn to improvise. But without understanding anything about it, he/she can't call him/herself a good musician in my opinion.
So my answer is closest to Banjocal

To be honest, my (mere) musician skills began when I started to play the guitar. I did try to play songs just by ear and played tabs relatively (so not memorizing the numbers but 'measure' the distance between each note/chord) which helped me a lot in understanding music.
I consider myself more a musician than a guitarist, 'cause I suck at guitar :p
#10
Quote by bustapr
Chris is a better guitarist but he doesnt have the musicianship that marty has.


I would have to disagree there.

As said above, Broderick knows alot of theory, and studies and arranges classical pieces, such as his tapping version of "Turkish March".

I told the "I would rather be a musician who plays guitar than a guitarist" to my brother, who responded that "If you play music, you are therefore a musician".
#11
Quote by Sean0913
Wow you couldn't be more wrong if you tried. Marty Friedman tells people the relative major of C minor is D#. You really are wrong, in so many ways. I'll post chapter and verse on this. I'm not even talking about guitar skills. Chris absolutely SMOKES most guys out there in terms of theory and musicianship and certainly MF.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkpZ645ztl0

"That was a VI V i in E minor"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRgjCi8OUR4

"Its got a Neapolitan chord and an Augmented 3 chord...and a diminished 7th..."

"It's got a VI V/V and then 1st inversion I"

Yeah he doesn't have the Musicianship of Marty...

Certainly Marty...Marty's great but hahaha I hope you weren't being a troll because if you are you got me good!

Sean

well, thats one way to look at it, but my way of looking at it is this. Being a good guitarist is knowing to play and knowing your way around a guitar. Being a good musician is being able to make enjoyable music. You dont really have to know every note on the fretboard to be a good musician you just have to make it sound good, something that marty is very good at. Chris may know more about guitar but he doesnt make music like most guitarist do. He learns a solo note for note (as hes said) and when he writes a solo, he doesnt think about musicality as much as he thinks about scales and notes.

Im not trying to start a flame war or anything, just pointing out 2 guitarist that many people know and can associate with that are very different.
#12
Quote by bustapr
well, thats one way to look at it, but my way of looking at it is this. Being a good guitarist is knowing to play and knowing your way around a guitar. Being a good musician is being able to make enjoyable music. You dont really have to know every note on the fretboard to be a good musician you just have to make it sound good, something that marty is very good at. Chris may know more about guitar but he doesnt make music like most guitarist do. He learns a solo note for note (as hes said) and when he writes a solo, he doesnt think about musicality as much as he thinks about scales and notes.

Im not trying to start a flame war or anything, just pointing out 2 guitarist that many people know and can associate with that are very different.


When you talk about "enjoyable music" you're talking about something that is subjective, and varies from person to person.

Can you reference me to the quote where you say he says he doesn't think about musicality?

Best,

Sean
#13
good Musician: knows how to create and play songs, good grasp on theory, most musicians know more than one instrument
good Guitarist: knows how to play the guitar with good technique

Musician > Guitarist
Quote by kaptkegan
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I pretty much never leave the drug thread anymore.
Last edited by Metallicuh at Jun 11, 2011,
#14
I don't think music theory knowledge is required to become a musician. I think a musician is somebody who creates music thoughfully, with reference to the context to achieve a certain purpose. Compare this against mindless shredding/running up and down patterns and you have the musician/guitarist difference.

However it really should be musician/non-musician comparison, as guitarist means somebody who plays guitar, whilst being a musician is about your approach to music.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#15
It doesn't make any sense if you take if literally. It's meant to inspire you, to keep striving to be better and to always keep improving.
^^The above is a Cryptic Metaphor^^


"To know the truth of history is to realize its ultimate myth and its inevitable ambiguity." Everything is made up and the facts don't matter.


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#17
Quote by Usernames sucks
So i hear this alot: Be a musician, not just a guitarist. I kinda get it, but not really. Wouldnt being a good guitar player make you a good misician, since its an instrument? What would you guys consider the biggest differences between a good guitar player and a good musician?

don't worry about things like this. If you're a good guitarist, you're a good musician. and if you play because you love to play then the saying's elitists use to belittle other people shouldn't matter.
shred is gaudy music
#18
Quote by GuitarMunky
If you're a good guitarist, you're a good musician.

i disagree with this, i know some good guitarists that aren't good musicians.
everything else i agree with though
#19
good musicians can write better songs,being a smoking guitarist dont mean shit
#21
Quote by z4twenny
i disagree with this, i know some good guitarists that aren't good musicians.
everything else i agree with though


Then they aren't good guitarists. Whatever happened to comparatively bad and good? There are technically skilled guitarists and there are musically skilled guitarists. In a musical sense the purely technical one is inferior. In a technical sense, if the musically skilled one is not technically skilled then he is inferior to the technically skilled guitarist. It depends what the criteria for "good" are in each given situation.

BTW, anyone that plays or practices music is a musician. Just like someone that acts in five minute short films is an actor (even if they're terrible). I don't see why only good musicians should be called musicians (instead of y'know, good musicians).

Quote by Usernames sucks
But would you guys say that i'ts a bigger difference between a good musician and a good guitarist, than a good musician and a good violin player (or any other instrument for that matter)?


Most other instruments read off of sheet music which already means the musician has learned something beyond the scope of their physical instrument, but it's not impossible to be an ignorant violin player. It depends on the genre of music in which the instrument exists.
Last edited by Sóknardalr at Jun 12, 2011,
#22
Quote by Life Is Brutal

I told the "I would rather be a musician who plays guitar than a guitarist" to my brother, who responded that "If you play music, you are therefore a musician".


Uhm, while that might not be your idea of it, that's true according to the literal definition.

http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/musician

Saying anything else is just opinion.
#23
Good musician: Plays well with others in the sandbox, writes well. Plays very well. Accomodating.

Good guitarist: Has their own spotlight. Brings it too. Plays very well. Refers to everyone as "Hey you...". Sometimes drools.

Good musician + good guitarist: Awesomeness in a can. Can session and create and be merry. Also might have a salary.

Its really a tough choice. I know brilliant guitarists out here in my side of the sandbox... flashy and all that sparkly stuff, flying around in blue dreams... but they're bastards to work with. They can't understand the greater concept of songwriting which is, in a nutshell, a good song that others will enjoy too. Also very egotistical and want that spotlight... look at me, look at me... look mom, no hands... etc etc. Would I begrudge them success? Hell no... Would I collaborate with them? No... unless they bribe me with southern comfort.

Musicians who don't care for ego driven goals... those are the ones I love working with. Everyone knows their place, performs... and gets the crowd going and having fun.

Anyway... i guess I went off topic... oops
Last edited by evolucian at Jun 12, 2011,
#24
I found recently my "guitarist" skills are 8/10. I can sweep, tap, do all that fancy stuff excluding insane Loomis/Becker stuff.

My "musician" skills though such as composing something someone wants to listen to is maybe 5/10. I can occasionally create a riff/melody that blows my mind but they're few and far between. I can't sit down and shit out gold like Loomis does on each album.


I sort of neglected my "musician' self to get my technique very high. Now I feel imbalanced... what point is there to my guitar playing when I re-hash stuff? Not fun at all.
So I took up jazz and blues, and a bit of classical. In a few weeks or so I blossomed from what was a 2/10 to now what I feel is 5/10.
Still a LOOONG way to go, but I'm quite happy with where it's going. I'd even say being a musician is a skill; but despite working at it... you have to have an ear and sound out what you want in your head. That helped me in writing melodic solos.

... plus writing sad music after something really sad happens also helps a lot.


In all, I'd say I wish instead of being really good at guitar and having okay musicianship, that I'd practiced at both and become 'good' in both instead of being lopsided.
Luckily though, the hard part is over. Practicing technique sucks, but once you get it all down, experimenting with music is very fun. I've found myself playing guitar even more because it's no longer wood-shedding.
: )
#25
Quote by Sóknardalr
Then they aren't good guitarists. Whatever happened to comparatively bad and good? There are technically skilled guitarists and there are musically skilled guitarists. In a musical sense the purely technical one is inferior. In a technical sense, if the musically skilled one is not technically skilled then he is inferior to the technically skilled guitarist. It depends what the criteria for "good" are in each given situation.

BTW, anyone that plays or practices music is a musician. Just like someone that acts in five minute short films is an actor (even if they're terrible). I don't see why only good musicians should be called musicians (instead of y'know, good musicians

By this rationale I'm an author and a chef, somebody get stephen king and gordon ramsey on the phone.
#26
Quote by z4twenny
By this rationale I'm an author and a chef, somebody get stephen king and gordon ramsey on the phone.


If you cook and have written published books then you are. "Author" is different from "musician" because "author" specifically implies you have published something. It's like saying you're a conductor if you know how to conduct but have never conducted any performance. "Musician" is simply someone who plays music. "Recording artist" refers to someone who has or does record music under a label. I just don't think it's necessary for these terms to be restricted to professional or qualified musicians.
#27
Quote by z4twenny
i disagree with this, i know some good guitarists that aren't good musicians.
everything else i agree with though


Then they aren't good guitarists either.

Unless you consider someone that can't play music on their instrument to be "good" at that instrument. Cause if you say they're good because they're good at playing music on their instrument.... then they have to be good musicians too. Unless you have some sort of elitist rationalization in regards to the use of the term musician.
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Jun 12, 2011,
#28
^ what i meant by that to be more specific is that they're technically proficient at the instrument but if you were to ask them to write an entire song IF they could it wouldn't be very cohesive as a musical piece. to me a musician should be able to play and write, otherwise i'd use the term performer.

Quote by Sóknardalr
"Author" is different from "musician" because "author" specifically implies you have published something.

nope i just checked merriam webster, anyone who writes any piece of literary work is an author. again by this rationale any child who wrote a 5 paragraph essay on the branches of the government is an author (if you graduated high school in the USA you definitely wrote this paper at some point in your school career) in the most literal interpretation of the word it's true, but is everyone REALLY an author? no, not REALLY but we all have some capacity to write information down in a linear and cohesive fashion that others can read and interpret.

Last edited by z4twenny at Jun 12, 2011,
#29
Quote by z4twenny
^ what i meant by that to be more specific is that they're technically proficient at the instrument but if you were to ask them to write an entire song IF they could it wouldn't be very cohesive as a musical piece. to me a musician should be able to play and write, otherwise i'd use the term performer.


nope i just checked merriam webster, anyone who writes any piece of literary work is an author. again by this rationale any child who wrote a 5 paragraph essay on the branches of the government is an author (if you graduated high school in the USA you definitely wrote this paper at some point in your school career) in the most literal interpretation of the word it's true, but is everyone REALLY an author? no, not REALLY but we all have some capacity to write information down in a linear and cohesive fashion that others can read and interpret.



Okay, you win. But I still don't feel "musician" is only someone who is a professional musician.
#30
^ i didn't say they had to be a professional, only that they should be competent in writing as well as technically proficient at their instrument. hell im not even asking them to be multi instrumentalists (though i thnk most musicians end up having a knack for playing a couple different instruments to some degree)
#31
Elitist phrases and/or uses of terms is a bad thing IMO. (so are semantics based arguments)
shred is gaudy music
#32
^ you're seeing it as an elitist thing when i'm really not trying to come at it from that angle. i'm looking at it from a skillset type of point. everyones got a different interpretation of what makes a "musician"
#33
Quote by z4twenny
^ you're seeing it as an elitist thing when i'm really not trying to come at it from that angle. i'm looking at it from a skillset type of point. everyones got a different interpretation of what makes a "musician"



IMO a better way to differentiate skill set types would be to use terms like professional musician, working musician, or amateur musician.

To me a 10th grade student playing saxophone is a musician. Even that annoying kid that posts here all the time is a musician. (you know who I'm talking about). Different levels.... but still musicians IMO.
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Jun 12, 2011,
#34
Quote by GuitarMunky
IMO a better way to differentiate skill set types would be to use terms like professional musician, working musician, or amateur musician.

To me a 10th grade student playing saxophone is a musician. Even that annoying kid that posts here all the time is a musician. (you know who I'm talking about). Different levels.... but still musicians IMO.


I agree. If you want to flat out say someone is a bad musician just say that. It's inaccurate to say they aren't musicians.
#35
Quote by Sóknardalr
I agree. If you want to flat out say someone is a bad musician just say that. It's inaccurate to say they aren't musicians.

So someone who burns water would just be a bad chef? They wouldn't just not be a chef?
#36
Quote by z4twenny
So someone who burns water would just be a bad chef? They wouldn't just not be a chef?


The two examples are incomparable I think. A chef who only boils water is kind of like a guitarist that only replaces strings. Is that a musician? Not even remotely.
#37
Quote by z4twenny
So someone who burns water would just be a bad chef? They wouldn't just not be a chef?

well a chef is specifically a person that cooks professionally, so yeah. But the term musician is far less specific, and doesn't necessarily refer to a person that is a professional.

Chef: "a person who cooks professionally for other people"

Musician: " a person who writes, performs, or makes music"

Outside of elitist banter, The idea that you have to be "good" to be considered a musician is inconsistent with common usage of the term.
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Jun 12, 2011,
#38
^ merriam webster defines a chef as a skilled cook. in that way a poorly skilled cook is still a chef, just not a good one. But by your logic this hypothetically inept cook is still a chef.
#39
Quote by z4twenny
^ merriam webster defines a chef as a skilled cook. in that way a poorly skilled cook is still a chef, just not a good one. But by your logic this hypothetically inept cook is still a chef.

you need the full definition... not just the part you want to keep the argument going.

the full definition from the merriam webster dictionary reads as...

": a skilled cook who manages the kitchen (as of a restaurant)"

the bolded part implies employment.
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Jun 13, 2011,
#40
Most of you are thinking too teoretical about this.

I've got a little vague description of it:

A good guitarist knows how to play the guitar and plays very well technically. He may also know a bunch of theory, understand how the guitar works, scales and how to apply them, chords and how to harmonize well etc...

A good musician (let's say a good guitar player AND musician) however knows how to put his instrument to good use in the big picture. He knows how to interact and communicate with his fellow band members. He doesn't NEED to know theory or much about the technical side of things, he just makes things sound good and work well together. He is creative... He doesn't necessarily have to compose music (and by that I don't mean transcribing it either).

It's more about the estethics and feeling in music that makes the difference. A good guitarist plays his stuff very well, but doesn't always make the right choices in the mix. A good musician contributes in giving the audiance a good, well-performed piece of music.
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