#1
hey UG, Im 21 years old been playing since feb 2010 turned 20 like 2months after i started playing guitar , anyway i been playing for a year and a half now and i have a big question seeing as how alot of good players that inspire me

anyway my question now is Can practicing alot help the odds of someone like me be just as good as someone who played since they were little?

(had to edited this post ..... the reason i made this thread was cuz i felt the other day i stumbled on a brick wall mentally with my guitar playing and just started feelng a lil doupful(something that can happen when ppl are first starting out) n some ppl came on here reading this getting the wrong message (apparently i cant vent personal thoughts that im temporarily having without being judged the wrong way )lol

and im completely over that wall now btw
"its not the destination.... so much as the journey" one once said
Last edited by Marqway at Sep 1, 2011,
#2
the reason people who play from a young age are good is because they have had more time to practice, it doesn't matter that they pleyed 5 hours a week between 12 and 20 if you start at 16 and do 10 hours a week. (if you use the same practice routine, have similar styles and so)
#3
Judging from your posts, you seem to be too preoccupied with where you stand compared to others. Play for you and be happy with your progress.

I started guitar right around my nineteenth birthday. After discovering music was my passion, I got upset that I didn't start sooner, thereby having a huge disadvantage compared to others. Then I played more, enjoyed myself and got over it. If you're in it for what other people think or how good you are compared to others, time to re-evaluate your goals and why you even bothered stepping foot inside the art world.

Not to be blunt--that's AeolianWolf's job--but it's time to get over it and enjoy yourself.
Nothing that is worthwhile in life will ever come easy.
#4
Here's my honest answer to you sir.

My cousin in in a metal band. He's about 19-20 years old. He's been playing since he was about 7 to 9. Roughly though. But he's been playing what seems to be all his life. He's a pretty decent guitarist and can play some REALLY sick riffs.

Now, I started playing when I was 13 years old. I was really inspired by him to play guitar to the point that I played 8 hours a day for 3 years. I'm now 17, going to be 18 soon and been playing for about 4-5 years. I can play almost ANYTHING put in front of me in a short period of time (keyword almost.

When I play for him he looks at me and says "dude, i wish i could play like you". I surpassed him at one point and even though he's been playing since he was little, I'm better than him.

Just realize that it takes TONS of practice. When I calculated all my hours of playing (roughly of course) I've probably put in over 5000-6000 hours in 4 years.

Practice > Playing since young
Playing since young + practice = mind blown
#5
I think no matter what you do theres always a sort of relationship with the guitar that one can only gain by starting at an early age, a sort of familiarity/devotion to it, but as far as technique and such goes, I think its easier to start when youre older and can understand what you are doing more and put more effort into it. It all depends on the person though. If youre the same age as some dude who has played every now and then since he was 12 and you started years after him but practiced everyday and were more devoted, chances are you would be the more skillfull player. The key with Vai and Hendrix is that they were devoted since they were younger and kept that devotion. I think thats the real key in starting at a younger age.

Solution: Don't compare yourself to others, youre not the same person. Everyone ends up learning guitar at their own pace in their own way, some faster than others for many reasons, and sometimes for no reason at all. Keep practicing and stay devoted and you can become as good as them, if not better, no matter your age. If you're really considering quitting because you are not as good as them at your age though, you might want to consider another hobby.
#6
Your brain is more geared to learning instruments the younger you are. It's easier to pick them up and learn them. However, nothing can replace practice and passion. I started when I was 16 (21 now) and I'm much better than most of my friends who have been playing since they were 8-10.

Stop worrying and start playing because you love it.
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#7
There are also some folks who have played even earlier then 12 years old and still suck ass at guitar. All of those guitarists you've mentioned got where they are through practice and commitment. That's what it's about, man.

Also, there's no reason to be discouraged because you've picked up the guitar later then most kids. Don't let that bring you down. What could you even do about it, really? Just do your thing..
A callous exterior isn't an uncommon way of protecting ideals; it hides the idealists from the derision of fools and cowards. But it also immobilizes them, so that, in trying to preserve their ideals, they risk losing them.
Last edited by Attenuare at Aug 30, 2011,
#8
Quote by Marqway
vai,satriani,buckethead, hendrix all started playing around 12 years old so i kinda feel me picking it up at my age and i just have this feeling like even if i practice practice practice i wont be able to be as good as someone who's been playing since a kid


It's time to set your own goals, for yourself. Your main aim should be to improve, not to reach some platinum award like it's a computer game. If you take the focus away from others, and just enjoy the music, you will win regardless of the amount of notes you can play every millisecond.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#9
In my opinion the only advantage young people have is that they will probably be playing a lot longer than many if they started at a young age. Otherwise, I don't think age really matters, as long as you are mentally and physically able enough to learn.
#10
Quote by soviet_ska
Judging from your posts, you seem to be too preoccupied with where you stand compared to others. Play for you and be happy with your progress.


Seconding this, I want to add that it makes no sense to compare yourself to some non-specific other.

Set yourself a target. "I want to be able to do ... this." And work until you can do it.

Your goals with respect to the guitar need to be your goals for YOU - not comparisons to anybody else. So spend some time asking yourself those questions. What do you want out of playing the guitar? Where do you want to be in one year? Five years?

And start working towards those goals.
#11
Quote by Marqway
hey UG , Im 21 years old been playing since feb 2010 turned 20 like 2months after i started playing guitar , anyway i been playing for a year and a half now and i have a big question seeing as how alot of good players that inspire me vai,satriani,buckethead, hendrix all started playing around 12 years old so i kinda feel me picking it up at my age and i just have this feeling like even if i practice practice practice i wont be able to be as good as someone who's been playing since a kid and so now i kind of recently watched a vid where vai said

"the only reason im good is because i practiced alot"

even tho he said that he also started playing since he was young , anyway my question now is Can practicing alot help the odds of someone like me be just as good as someone who played since they were little?


well, obviously the more you play/practice, the better you get. that's a no brainer. I wouldn't be to worried about keeping up with your heros though. If you enjoy playing guitar, then play. If your only goal is to be as good as your heros, Id suggest putting it away and doing something else, because without a genuine appreciation for the act of playing the instrument on a simple level, it's just not going to happen.
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Aug 30, 2011,
#12
Dude seriously forget about your age, it's just a number. When people ask how long you've been playing just be modest about it. Just make sure you keep practicing!
#13
it has been said that it takes about 10000 hours of practice to master most activities, so naturally people that start early are able to put in this time.

It is also a common misconception that practice makes perfect. Perfect practice makes perfect, if you really focus you will progress more quickly. if you are distracted or not dedicated to spending time on only practicing guitar, while it might be fun, you will not get that much better. Sure there are some examples of natural talent, but this is overrated, its really how dedicated you are to focusing on the craft.

also its never a good idea to learn something just so you can be good at it, have fun along the way, to me thats the point.
#14
Just forget about it and do what you can; if you practice hard while loving instrument and the music, you will go far regardless of your starting age.
Last edited by Vlasco at Aug 30, 2011,
#15
Quote by soviet_ska
Judging from your posts, you seem to be too preoccupied with where you stand compared to others. Play for you and be happy with your progress.

I started guitar right around my nineteenth birthday. After discovering music was my passion, I got upset that I didn't start sooner, thereby having a huge disadvantage compared to others. Then I played more, enjoyed myself and got over it. If you're in it for what other people think or how good you are compared to others, time to re-evaluate your goals and why you even bothered stepping foot inside the art world.

Not to be blunt--that's AeolianWolf's job--but it's time to get over it and enjoy yourself.


dont get me wrong i enjoy everyminute of playing prolly wush i had only picked up guitar earlier but nothin u can do about it lol but anyway ill prolly play as long as i live to be honest if God allows it
"its not the destination.... so much as the journey" one once said
#16
Quote by Picklelerner
If you're really considering quitting because you are not as good as them at your age though, you might want to consider another hobby.



..... No thank you sir i like my hobby,
"its not the destination.... so much as the journey" one once said
#17
thanx for the comments guys i kinda just needed to hear these things from other players who have experience to tell it how it is
"its not the destination.... so much as the journey" one once said
#18
Quote by zincabopataurio
In my opinion the only advantage young people have is that they will probably be playing a lot longer than many if they started at a young age. Otherwise, I don't think age really matters, as long as you are mentally and physically able enough to learn.

I like your 'curious venture' tune.
#19
What is a few years difference going to do? Joe satriani is 55, does that mean anyone under the age of 45 can't play his music?

If you want to get as good as your heros on guitar, quit moaning on the internet, fueling these stupid threads and do something about it, I'll give you a hint, it's called playing your guitar.

/Rant
#20
The reason younger kids are better at playing instruments is that they aren't yet old enough to develop bad habits (as far as music goes at least). Thus, provided they are taught well, they learn good habits while they are too young to over-think them, and thus incorporate and internalize them easily so that these good habits seem natural to them when they are older. However, bad instruction leads to the opposite: the internalization of bad habits into their playing at an older age.

When you begin at an older age, especially if you are self-taught, you have to not only worry about being taught bad habits, but you are such a critical person (as humans naturally are) that you apply logic to everything instead of just internalizing the concept. ie, you tend to see things in an abstract way, something separate from you. While this is the natural product of critical thinking, in music it is, in itself, a "bad habit."

Thus, from the get-go, you are bringing in a bad habit (and probably many more) that you must first unlearn before you can learn good habits. And any teacher (music or otherwise) will tell you how much more difficult it is to break bad habits then it is to learn good ones.

However, simply because it is difficult to break bad habits does not mean it is impossible. You must consciously work to break your bad habits (if you don't know what they are, a good instructor will tell you) while at the same time preventing yourself from acquiring more bad habits in the process. But the same underlying factors lie at the heart of playing a musical instrument at any age, so acquiring and nurturing these factors is also possible at any age.

It is a matter not only of work, but the critical thought that comes with maturity, you must be able to analyze yourself (even if you have a teacher) to determine what you are doing wrong and how you can get better. In this respect, older people actually have an advantage over younger people. However, as mentioned before, over-critical-thinking is a handicap in some respects as well.

So it is a balancing act between not enough thought and too much thought, too little work and too much work, indeed between thought and work itself. It is easier with a guide to help you in the balancing process, but it will not be easy by any means. But life isn't easy, and something as wonderful as being a good musician (be it pop/jazz/classical or otherwise) is one of the most difficult things you could possibly do in life. It is intimidating for good reason: it is hard. But you can't let difficult things stand between you and what you feel is important to you. Doing so will not just lead to failure as a musician, but ultimately failure in life itself. So you have to push through things to achieve your goals (which only you can set for yourself). That is the measure of a good musician, indeed of a good person.
#21
age vs practice... the whole subject isn't even relevent. You never stop changing in terms of musical taste, but when it comes to technical ability and how much theory you can actually understand, you can and will plateu after so many hours. Leaving you in a state where you will just develop/change what music you play natrually etc

so, get practicing. also apparantly I just pretty much said guitar is simliar to an MMORPG loll. It is though, phyiscally as a human you can only play so technical and there's only so much theory to understand. It's how you apply it bro's
#22
Well, starting at a young age is definitley a benefit but you are limited to how good you can get because your fingers are small, so who knows? You can get to a pretty impressive level in 3 years if you practice about 2 hours a day I've found...
Uploaded some MP3's onto my profile, please check 'em out & let me know what you think! :3
#23
Quote by griffRG7321
What is a few years difference going to do? Joe satriani is 55, does that mean anyone under the age of 45 can't play his music?

If you want to get as good as your heros on guitar, quit moaning on the internet, fueling these stupid threads and do something about it, I'll give you a hint, it's called playing your guitar.

/Rant



looks like someone forgot what it was like when first starting out i made this thread to get answers, i dont come from a background where everyone around me has musical experience, i joined this site as a way to rememdy that , hear from other guitarist who have experience
"its not the destination.... so much as the journey" one once said
#24
Quote by Housequake
Well, starting at a young age is definitley a benefit but you are limited to how good you can get because your fingers are small, so who knows? You can get to a pretty impressive level in 3 years if you practice about 2 hours a day I've found...


thanx man..
"its not the destination.... so much as the journey" one once said
#25
Quote by s31770
age vs practice... the whole subject isn't even relevent. You never stop changing in terms of musical taste, but when it comes to technical ability and how much theory you can actually understand, you can and will plateu after so many hours. Leaving you in a state where you will just develop/change what music you play natrually etc

so, get practicing. also apparantly I just pretty much said guitar is simliar to an MMORPG loll. It is though, phyiscally as a human you can only play so technical and there's only so much theory to understand. It's how you apply it bro's



lol mmorpg.... big smile just came over myface thanx alot bro
"its not the destination.... so much as the journey" one once said
#26
Quote by Marqway
looks like someone forgot what it was like when first starting out i made this thread to get answers, i dont come from a background where everyone around me has musical experience, i joined this site as a way to rememdy that , hear from other guitarist who have experience

Just cause no one around you plays an instrument doesn't mean anything. I started that way and I'm mostly self-taught. I got into a prestigious music school. Your situation doesn't matter near as much as your drive and dedication.

It just sounds like you're making excuses now.

EDIT:
nmitchell076...


------


You get a clap-box, cause UG only allows 9 smileys per post.
Last edited by DiminishedFifth at Sep 1, 2011,
#27
Quote by DiminishedFifth
Just cause no one around you plays an instrument doesn't mean anything. I started that way and I'm mostly self-taught. I got into a prestigious music school. Your situation doesn't matter near as much as your drive and dedication.

It just sounds like you're making excuses now.

EDIT:
nmitchell076...


------


You get a clap-box, cause UG only allows 9 smileys per post.


smh completely missed the point of why "i was asking questions"... dude if u got something negative on ur mind just dont bother posting up here cuz i dont need it. cuz before u know it this whole thread will be nothing but spamm post from ppl who dont have anything better to do with their life other then talk"uknowat"

(
"its not the destination.... so much as the journey" one once said
Last edited by Marqway at Sep 1, 2011,
#28
Quote by Marqway
smh completely missed the point of why "i was asking questions"... dude if u got something negative on ur mind just dont bother posting up here cuz i dont need it. cuz before u know it this whole thread will be nothing but spamm post from ppl who dont have anything better to do with their life other then talk"uknowat"

(

And you completely missed the point of Griff's (and, in consequence, my) post.

Practice and play. You have a long life ahead of you and you'll get good. It might take a little longer as your brain has already peaked, but you will get better if you practice. That's all there is to it. There's no reason why you couldn't. Only advantage being young has is that they started earlier and the stuff nmitchell said.

So stop worrying about where you are and get to practicing. Before you know it, you'll be better than you ever thought you could be.
#29
"noted"

ok appreciate the comments/tips/advice ......House quake, and s31770 and some others i think your post has given me a general idea of what practice can actually do... from what im getting the more u practice even if u started late ... ur playing will eventually begin to excell lol reminds me of some dbz training lol(wheres the hyperbolic time chamber of music)

well i love to play , it doesnt feel like a chore at all and i enjoy it ...
"its not the destination.... so much as the journey" one once said