#1
So I've been playing guitar for a few years off and on, and mostly play tabs of other people's songs. Eventually I'd like to be able to play in a band, most likely as rhythm guitar to start out and was curious what areas I'd need to brush up on first for that.

Things I know: Major scale, Pentatonic scale, about 4-5 chords (basic ones), and I know some covers that I learned from tabs such as: Metallica - Master of puppets (not the solo though), Some Trivium tabs (not the solos though), some Killswitch engage (riffs mostly), Tool (riffs mostly), and a few other random riffs. I don't really know any full songs though as I get stuck in certain places and don't really have a teacher to help me get through them. I know a lot of theory basics as I've read through the Crusade column on this site which goes into intervals, scales, chord formations, being able to create scales from chords, and matching your keys, etc. The problem is it's all theory that I haven't really applied to anything.

To be able to start playing in a band and not feel like a complete noob, I feel like I need to brush up on my chords and also just general fretboard knowledge such as the CAGED system and learning chords in different locations on the fret board. I'm pretty bad at improvising also.

What do you guys think, is it best to start just learning CAGED, chords, and different locations on the board? I mean if I was to get into a band, I'd just be playing other peoples songs anyway to start as it would be an already established band that just lost a member. I'm also pretty bad with a metronome which I know is not a good thing. I tend to lose focus easily so playing boring excersizes usually isn't appealing to me, hence why I skipped chords and jumped right into learning tabs of the songs I like.
#2
Theory.

Hone your ear, learn chord construction, learn tension/resolution, understand your major/minor scales and learn notes and intervals rather than just numbers and shapes.

It's a long, difficult road, but it's the best way to really understand how the instrument works.
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Last edited by Hail at Sep 1, 2011,
#3
Firstly I'll have to say that you should learn a lot more chords and their different positiions over the fretboard. CAGED will teach you that (if that's the route you wanna go).
You should also read up a bit on chord construction, this will help you in the long run.
Another thing you should look into is learning the fretboard. There are a few methods, like CAGED, but see which one works best for you.

If you really want to learn CAGED, then try get your hands on Fretboard Logic Vol.1-3
I found those books to be the best on the method.

Have a look in the lessons section of this site, it may provide you with some useful help.

Keep on practicing with a metronome, I know it may be boring but it pays off.
#4
I agree that theory is vital to be able to communicate in a meaningful way in a band situation with people who know what they're doing, but I also think that the best way to make it stick and to motivate yourself to it, paradoxically, is to be in a band. Nothing makes you step up like having to keep up with people who are better than you. Obviously if they *too* much better than you, or if they're jerks, it's not going to work out, and regardless you have to be ready to take a few knocks to the ego, but ultimately I think it's the best thing for you.

I agree with Hail, and certainly would encourage you to keep learning, but based on what you say I think you know enough to be in a band, or at least jam with some people.
#5
Can you play all your riffs and songs to a beat click, without playing the real songs through the stereo?
#6
Quote by Wolffgang
I agree that theory is vital to be able to communicate in a meaningful way in a band situation with people who know what they're doing, but I also think that the best way to make it stick and to motivate yourself to it, paradoxically, is to be in a band. Nothing makes you step up like having to keep up with people who are better than you. Obviously if they *too* much better than you, or if they're jerks, it's not going to work out, and regardless you have to be ready to take a few knocks to the ego, but ultimately I think it's the best thing for you.

I agree with Hail, and certainly would encourage you to keep learning, but based on what you say I think you know enough to be in a band, or at least jam with some people.


Yeah, this is certainly true. Finding people on your level is the easiest way to advance quickly, but definitely start looking at what you're doing. Within a few months, especially with a band, you'll really start seeing a difference in what you're doing and how it sounds.
Quote by Kevätuhri
Hail isn't too edgy for posts, posts are not edgy enough for Hail.


Quote by UseYourThumb
You win. I'm done here.
#10
Wolffgang has the right idea. The only way to learn how to play in a band is to be in a band. Post some local ads looking for people to jam with. It is a totally different experience to practice chords and tabs by yourself and playing with other people.

Once you play with people at or a little above your current ability, you will see your confidence and skills improve by leaps and bounds.
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#11
search bands on myspace or whatever close to ur area and let them know ur intrested thats how i did it when i played in a band before i joined the navy lol!
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#12
Quote by Exodus04
So I've been playing guitar for a few years off and on, and mostly play tabs of other people's songs. Eventually I'd like to be able to play in a band, most likely as rhythm guitar to start out and was curious what areas I'd need to brush up on first for that.

Things I know: Major scale, Pentatonic scale, about 4-5 chords (basic ones), and I know some covers that I learned from tabs such as: Metallica - Master of puppets (not the solo though), Some Trivium tabs (not the solos though), some Killswitch engage (riffs mostly), Tool (riffs mostly), and a few other random riffs. I don't really know any full songs though as I get stuck in certain places and don't really have a teacher to help me get through them. I know a lot of theory basics as I've read through the Crusade column on this site which goes into intervals, scales, chord formations, being able to create scales from chords, and matching your keys, etc. The problem is it's all theory that I haven't really applied to anything.

To be able to start playing in a band and not feel like a complete noob, I feel like I need to brush up on my chords and also just general fretboard knowledge such as the CAGED system and learning chords in different locations on the fret board. I'm pretty bad at improvising also.

What do you guys think, is it best to start just learning CAGED, chords, and different locations on the board? I mean if I was to get into a band, I'd just be playing other peoples songs anyway to start as it would be an already established band that just lost a member. I'm also pretty bad with a metronome which I know is not a good thing. I tend to lose focus easily so playing boring excersizes usually isn't appealing to me, hence why I skipped chords and jumped right into learning tabs of the songs I like.



Playing only one or two riffs of a song is what I used to do when I first started to play guitar, one of my first goals was to be able to play the songs I love the WHOLE way through. For me it was the state of mind I had when playing with friends and I wasn't able to play a song the whole way through, I would feel stupid and they would think I was shite so I made sure every song I learned I could play from start to finish. I used guitar pro to learn songs and play along with the tab, and the function to slow down and mute other instruments is perfect for those tricky riffs which are hard to nail down. Also you say you don't have a teacher, well neither did I, if you get really stuck on a riff, there are plenty of videos on youtube on how to play the riff in question, the good ones will slow it down and walk you through it (I find watching someone playing the riff at full speed with no breakdown to be no help at all).

As far as your music theory knowledge is concerned you are further music down the line than I was when I was at your stage. I had 0 music theory knowledge when I was just learning other peoples songs. I decided to learn music theory when I decided that I want to join a band and make my own music. Learning to apply theory to your process can be a long process but can be greatly sped up with dedication. Again using guitar pro (i sound like a walking advert for guitar pro ) I would construct chords using the music theory I had, make up a drum beat and bass line and practice playing over it with my guitar to see which notes go with what chords and what to avoid. I would also tab out guitar lines when I didn't have my guitar at hand and although most of the stuff I made I wouldn't ever consider using in a song now, It did provide me with alot of experience with how music works.

So...my advice to you would be to learn more chords like barre chords, learn the notes on the fretboard so that you know what notes to play in whatever situation you are in, get guitar pro if you don't have it and join a band. You learn by doing.
#13
Playing with other players is essential to getting better as a guitarist and as a musician. Play in a band whether or not you feel ready. You will get a lot better fast.
#14
before actually starting in a band you could practice using backing tracks. and if you want to be really good at it there are backing tracks on youtube witch you can use to practice making instruments sound good together. for writing your own songs with a band this and learning some more chords/scales and theory will definitly be a big help to you.