#1
Soo, this is the case.
My guitar playing is getting worse and worse but I dont know why. I cant even write any decent riffs anymore.
The other day I was in my local music store. I played some bass and it sounded pretty bad. Well, so I tried some guitars ,which are my main instruments, instead.
It was bad I mean really bad, I sounded like some noob trying to shred and look cool.
I left the place really disappointed with myself. I know that I can do so much better, I really can.
And then all my recent band practices. I dont even want to mention that.
My playing has gotten worse over the past few months.
My solos sound like some little kid trying to play for the first time.
Riffs are incredibly sloppy. I just dont know why it is this way.
I play blues, rock and some nu-metal. I can play 7 strings and a 5 string bass, drums and Dj a little. Even my imagination has gone bad.
Should I take a break from playing instruments I what?
I know that I am so much better than I am right now. Im even planning to get a new 7string for Christmas and I feel kind of unworthy of having a new, good guitar when it is like this.

I Hope that you understand what I mean by all this.
Sorry for the long post and I would be happy if someone could come up with an advice for what I should do right now.

Thanks.
#2
A break could help. Taking a break is familiar at least from skateboarding, when you try to learn a new trick but do it too sloppy to nail it, after a break there should be a different feel to it.
Quote by durhamdynamo
I like my coffee like I like my women.

Covered in bees!
#3
I've been in the same boat before with my bass playing. Honestly, I got annoyed with myself, and just stopped playing for a while. I'd fiddle every now and then, but nothing even relatively close to serious. I did this for about a month. When I decided to get serious again, and start writing music with my band, everything felt fresh.

I'd say taking a small break can without a doubt help, don't try so hard to play up to your previous standards(sometimes that can make things a lot worse), or you can always try playing different styles and genre you usually don't associate yourself with.

You'll get out of this "rut". Pretty much all musicians go through them; it's all natural.
#4
Same thing happened to me a few months ago. I took a break, came back a few weeks later and I felt like a brand new guitarist. Also try playing things that are different. Variety is the spice of life my friend.
What do you get if you drop a piano down a mineshaft?
E--4-
B--4-
G--4-
D--6-
A--6-
E--4-
#5
Almost sounds like writers block. Take a step back, appreciate what you're doing, look to some outside influences (and by this I mean different types of music) and really analyze what's changed. There's nothing, barring a physical/mental impediment, that should make your playing worse. Maybe you're scrutinizing your playing too much and need to just let things flow?

I know my brain works in a formulatic manner and not in an arts'y style, so I approach everything using math, scales, formulas, etc., but when I actually take the time to sit down and listen to music or my playing, it's completely different and my brain starts working off of feeling rather than formula.

I'm by no means a pro, or even great, guitar player, but even I can now hear a rhythm/set of notes in my head and just drop my hand into the correct area of the fretboard because of the correlation my brain makes between the sound and what sounds I know the fretboard can produce where. I can even change the pitch on a whim. Do I know what scale I'm in always? No. Do I kow which notes I'm playing exactly? No. But I can feel out what I'm doing, rather than over analyzing it and trying to decipher exactly what I should be doing every step of the way.

Geez, I think I may have gone a little off course...
Last edited by Minivirus2 at Nov 17, 2011,
#6
Thanks guys! So I will take a break but it will be a little hard because I love creating music.
I will listen to some different stuff when Im out of my break again.
I will also not push myself to much again.
Thanks again!
#7
i did have a good idea but as soon as i scrolled to the bottom of this page i totally forgot what i was gunna say, nevermind ay
#8
Quote by PSNbridgy
i did have a good idea but as soon as i scrolled to the bottom of this page i totally forgot what i was gunna say, nevermind ay

Smart one haha. Things like that happen to me all the time!
#9
Keep playing, do NOT take a break, often the most awesome improvements come after the worst moments of frustration and if they dont stick with your passion and your decisions.

also how long do you practice ? what do you practice?
Quote by Hail
i'm the internet equivalent of ripping the skin off my face and strangling you with it right now


Quote by Steve Albini
Remixing is for talentless pussies who don't know how to tune a drum or point a microphone.
#10
it sounds like your ears may have progressed faster than your playing. rather than your playing getting worse, it sounds as if you're better able to hear your playing for what it is (as you play guitar longer, you get better at hearing it. also, you can hear mistakes more clearly). as a result, licks you would have considered amazing a year ago sound generic and un-inspired.

I had the same problem a couple years back; my concept of good playing and my melodic sensibility far exceeded what I could come up with on a guitar (I could hum parts, but I couldn't figure out how to play them). additionally, I could hear my own lack of accuracy. I suggest that you focus your practicing to work on your accuracy (so at least you don't hear that issue). there are lots of really good resources at any music shop full of exercises to improve physical playing characteristics (speed, accuracy, dynamics). also, try and learn some theory; part of the reason you sound noob-ish is because your ability to hear melodic ideas has exceeded your ability to play them, so your playing sounds comparatively weak. learn your scales and arpeggios, and apply them to your playing.

its alot of work, but it'll be worth it. also, sorry for the wall of text
#11
Quote by BOYERxBREAKDOWN
Same thing happened to me a few months ago. I took a break, came back a few weeks later and I felt like a brand new guitarist. Also try playing things that are different. Variety is the spice of life my friend.

We need to talk.

You've stolen my sig
Quote by EndTheRapture51
who pays five hundred fucking dollars for a burger
#12
Quote by Slashiepie
Keep playing, do NOT take a break, often the most awesome improvements come after the worst moments of frustration and if they dont stick with your passion and your decisions.

also how long do you practice ? what do you practice?

Well, I play pretty much every day.
Some days I do scales, some other day I just jam to some record, polyrythms, arpeggio with hammer-ons and other stuff.
#13
Quote by krehzeekid
it sounds like your ears may have progressed faster than your playing. rather than your playing getting worse, it sounds as if you're better able to hear your playing for what it is (as you play guitar longer, you get better at hearing it. also, you can hear mistakes more clearly). as a result, licks you would have considered amazing a year ago sound generic and un-inspired.

I had the same problem a couple years back; my concept of good playing and my melodic sensibility far exceeded what I could come up with on a guitar (I could hum parts, but I couldn't figure out how to play them). additionally, I could hear my own lack of accuracy. I suggest that you focus your practicing to work on your accuracy (so at least you don't hear that issue). there are lots of really good resources at any music shop full of exercises to improve physical playing characteristics (speed, accuracy, dynamics). also, try and learn some theory; part of the reason you sound noob-ish is because your ability to hear melodic ideas has exceeded your ability to play them, so your playing sounds comparatively weak. learn your scales and arpeggios, and apply them to your playing.

its alot of work, but it'll be worth it. also, sorry for the wall of text

Thats a thing I havent really thought about! I know that my ears have evolved and stuff that sounded good back then suck now, but not that it has progressed faster than my playing.
Musical meditation, could it be something?
Heres Steve Vai talking about it right before the middle.
I dont mind walls of text if they give me advice! Thank you!
#14
Maybe you're taking it all too seriously. Sometimes, progression is VERY slow when learning an instrument. You can't make huge advances all the time. I only have major breakthroughs once a year, sometimes even less than that.

Maybe you should listen to a genre that you havnn't listened to before, and try to play in that style. Sometimes we just need something different to work on, and then when we come back to our favorite style, it's that much richer.
#15
Quote by KailM
Maybe you're taking it all too seriously. Sometimes, progression is VERY slow when learning an instrument. You can't make huge advances all the time. I only have major breakthroughs once a year, sometimes even less than that.

Maybe you should listen to a genre that you havnn't listened to before, and try to play in that style. Sometimes we just need something different to work on, and then when we come back to our favorite style, it's that much richer.

Well, ill take your advice. Ill play less frequent but when I will play different stuff.
Thats a thing Ive learnt from all of this.
Thanks dude!
#16
Maybe you should quit drinking and doing drugs.


Or , Maybe you need to Do more !!
dngrsdave

Heavy Metal Thunder
#17
Quote by dngrsdave
Maybe you should quit drinking and doing drugs.


Or , Maybe you need to Do more !!

You got a point. Good one thou
#18
I find there are some days where I just hit every note on intense solos and impress myself. Other days I find that even the most basic crap I can't do for some reason. Why does this happen? No idea.


Though if you find yourself really bad, you need to check your technique and practice a lot more. Even when I'm having a bad day, there are still scale shapes I can revert to and always play them pretty clean.


Sometimes store equipment sucks too, might not be you. You also get used to a certain sound as well.


If you find yourself getting worse, ask yourself if you even set aside practice time to get better? The worst thing you can do is just play to stuff you already know. You have to be pushing yourself to try new amazing things to make yourself better all the time.
It's spelled wiener.
#19
Quote by Lyrax
Well, I play pretty much every day.
Some days I do scales, some other day I just jam to some record, polyrythms, arpeggio with hammer-ons and other stuff.


Imo thats the problem, i advice against what everyone is telling you, do not take a break, just be consistent and systematic in what you practice, if you jump around too much it wont stick in your head and muscles.. and you wont master anything you will just know a little about everything.

Practice everyday, with a schedule that lets you master things and then keep incorporating more practice that fits into the category you just mastered.. there is so much to learn.. so NO TIME for breaks, breaks are for pussies!! jk

Just my 2 cents, it has worked for me and everyone ive known who has done it.
Quote by Hail
i'm the internet equivalent of ripping the skin off my face and strangling you with it right now


Quote by Steve Albini
Remixing is for talentless pussies who don't know how to tune a drum or point a microphone.
#20
Just practise one or two things at a time rather than trying to take on a ton of new stuff. Make sure you review it every now and then- record yourself so you can hear/see what you're doing.
#21
Quote by Slashiepie
Imo thats the problem, i advice against what everyone is telling you, do not take a break, just be consistent and systematic in what you practice, if you jump around too much it wont stick in your head and muscles.. and you wont master anything you will just know a little about everything.

Practice everyday, with a schedule that lets you master things and then keep incorporating more practice that fits into the category you just mastered.. there is so much to learn.. so NO TIME for breaks, breaks are for pussies!! jk

Just my 2 cents, it has worked for me and everyone ive known who has done it.

Ill take your advice about the scheduled training. Ive taken a break for a couple days now and it seems to get a bit better. So I really shouldnt take a break like half of the people here say?
Thanks anyway
#22
Quote by AtomicBirdy
I find there are some days where I just hit every note on intense solos and impress myself. Other days I find that even the most basic crap I can't do for some reason. Why does this happen? No idea.


Though if you find yourself really bad, you need to check your technique and practice a lot more. Even when I'm having a bad day, there are still scale shapes I can revert to and always play them pretty clean.


Sometimes store equipment sucks too, might not be you. You also get used to a certain sound as well.


If you find yourself getting worse, ask yourself if you even set aside practice time to get better? The worst thing you can do is just play to stuff you already know. You have to be pushing yourself to try new amazing things to make yourself better all the time.

I agree with you that I have to play different stuff. I have played like the same Papa Roach and Breaking Benjamin stuff for like two months. That could be the problem, never really thought of that actually. I really should use my 7 more because Im hardly using it and that could mix things up a litte bit.
I keep your advice in mind. Gracias!