#1
I have been playing for about two years now, and I need to continue to grow. I can play very well for where I am, but I cant run scales AT ALL, I can come up with songs and I can fingerpick very well for my level. I also sing very well, I just want to be able to come up with a song like Billy Corgan, John Mayer, Thom Yorke. Yes I know they are miles ahead of me. But what techniques do they base their songs on like these


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fMVQ1synlaU

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


There are more, mind you I dont want to be them, I like me. I just want to do more and become better quickly. My goal is to become a music teacher and I want to do it. But I dont play well enough to teach


I can play the Rose March, just not the beginning rundown.
#2
If you want to expand your musical talent, creativity, and become a music teacher, then I sugget that you start looking into music theory. And if you already know a little bit already, then good, go deeper.
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#3
You don't need to be fast and awesome (technically speaking) on an instrument to be a teacher. As a music teacher, your strenght has to lay in music theory and the ability to explain things clearly to your students. There are many prerequisites to be a good teacher other than being a good player. You need to be a MUSICIAN, not a guitarist.
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#4
Quote by Trizek
If you want to expand your musical talent, creativity, and become a music teacher, then I sugget that you start looking into music theory. And if you already know a little bit already, then good, go deeper.



I understand a good amount and I take lessons but I cant incorporate it into my playing.

Hmm...

What specifically?

I know a little bit of everything, but I'd rather not pick up a book with pointless information and little application, though I do own a theory book that I use as a writing resource.
#5
Explore music theory, experiment a lot, listen to music that inspires you, and all of that. And remember that theory isn't a set of rules, it's mostly just an explanation of why things sound good.

For writing excellent lyrics, you have to really expand your knowledge of everything. Read poetry, watch documentaries, go for a drive or a walk, make a list of the interesting things you see and then google those things to learn new info about them. Music is about expressing what's inside of you. So put some knowledge, thoughts, and ideas inside of you, and then express them in your way.

I hope that helps.
#6
Quote by SamuraiSeven
I understand a good amount and I take lessons but I cant incorporate it into my playing.

Hmm...

What specifically?

I know a little bit of everything, but I'd rather not pick up a book with pointless information and little application, though I do own a theory book that I use as a writing resource.


You should start by analyzing basic songs from bands you like; The Beatles' songs are good for studying a few things such as modulation, and I see you like Radiohead; Greenwood's guitar parts are good for studying dissonance and melody. Approach to a music teacher or an advanced student and ask for help.

There are more topics that you can study, such as counterpoint and orchestration (which is found in classical pieces), a lot of improvisation and scale theory (which can be found in jazz and blues), ALL of those things can be helpful to increase your musical sense of harmony and melody, and will make you a better composer/teacher.

You should never study music theory without using examples. There are many things that work on paper, but they are not so pleasant to the ear. ALWAYS use your ear; train yourself to recognize chord tones and intervals, that's the most important thing about a musician. Just as a painter can't create a beautiful piece just by using color and brush theory without his eyes, a musician can't create a beautiful composition without using his ears first.

I'm sorry if my english isn't that clear, I just want to help.
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Last edited by Svennz at Dec 31, 2011,
#7
Thanks so much, I really need to grow, there is so much I want to express, so many I deas that come into my head, that I can never put into real application, like what works instead of chords to accompany a singing melody on guitar. \

I want to be serious, to be honest my roommate who used to make a lot of money with music says I should start gigging, but I want to make music that touched people, not for the sake of the song.
#8
Ok good question I think I know what Im trying to ask,


How can I write music for guitar that is self supporting, in other words that doesn't require other instruments, Im usually stuck strumming or fingerpicking, how can I compose stuff like Lazy Eye or 1979, or Everlong. Which I can play


Is it just a matter of doing it or is there a technique Im missing?
#9
There is no "technique" - the ability to do stuff like that comes from having experience and understanding of music, simple as that.

If you "understand" a good amount of theory but can't incorporate it into your playing then, bluntly, you don't understand it. That's certainly one obvious gap in your knowledge that's going to be holding you back, so it's probably time to go back over theory you think you know and make sure you learn it properly - if you can't actually apply that knowledge then it's useless to you.
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#10
One thing that I've found particularly helpful in constructing songs is the use of a looper pedal. With a looper pedal, you can create short rhythmic passages and then experiment by soloing over the top of them, or vice versa; lay down the lead parts and then fill in the chords. It has really helped me to take some of my riffs and then see their potential in whole songs. Hope that helps!
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#11
Quote by steven seagull
There is no "technique" - the ability to do stuff like that comes from having experience and understanding of music, simple as that.

If you "understand" a good amount of theory but can't incorporate it into your playing then, bluntly, you don't understand it. That's certainly one obvious gap in your knowledge that's going to be holding you back, so it's probably time to go back over theory you think you know and make sure you learn it properly - if you can't actually apply that knowledge then it's useless to you.



I disagree

Unless the theory tells me exactly how to apply it on guitar, rather than giving me raw information then it is useless. It is just like know all the football plays but now being able to execute them properly, either due to lack of skill or inexperience and having to watch someone else intently.
#12
It is useless, it's just taking up space in your head gathering dust.

It only becomes useful when you can use it.
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#13
Unless the theory tells me exactly how to apply it on guitar, rather than giving me raw information then it is useless.


Theory doesn't "apply to the guitar". It applies to music.

If you have trouble getting what you know onto the guitar then you need to work on your understanding of the guitar and of theory.
#14
Quote by SamuraiSeven
I disagree

Unless the theory tells me exactly how to apply it on guitar, rather than giving me raw information then it is useless. It is just like know all the football plays but now being able to execute them properly, either due to lack of skill or inexperience and having to watch someone else intently.

Trouble there is that music theory is descriptive, not prescriptive. You can use theory to describe a passage, but no amount of theory will tell you what must necessarily follow in music.

There are an infinite number of approaches you can take with any given musical passage. No amount of theory will tell you what you must necessarily play. If you have an idea, you can use theory to figure out how to play it and how it will sound, but it theory is not a blueprint.

Ideally, you want to be able to listen to a piece of music and know what's going on theoretically. What kind of chord progression is happening, what the melodic line is doing, and what their interaction results in for the listener. Know how build tension and release it. Know how hear a chord progression and solo over it in a way that is appropriate to you. Theory is only good if you know how to apply it; knowing it is only part of the battle.
#15
Thanks to all you veterans, I appreciate all of the knowledge in this thread, I know the notes on the fretboard and how to find what key I'min, the chords in a key, and im learning about secondary dominants and passing tones in my lesson, but this feels like calculus to cashiering.
#16
I strongly recommend this course to help you understand and master guitar theory. This guy is very thorough and steps away from the dreaded piano based paradigms. With this course, you will learn guitar theory without the hassle of searching the internet and watching online videos. Check this out. You won't regret it!

http://nyan.cat/
#18
To write a song you should have something to write about.

You could also try psychedelics
#19
Quote by SamuraiSeven
I have been playing for about two years now, and I need to continue to grow. I can play very well for where I am, but I cant run scales AT ALL, I can come up with songs and I can fingerpick very well for my level. I also sing very well, I just want to be able to come up with a song like Billy Corgan, John Mayer, Thom Yorke. Yes I know they are miles ahead of me. But what techniques do they base their songs on like these


Oi, do you have a DAW and an audio interface already?
How are you recording?

As others have said, getting your theory down and applying it is a perfect approach, but you also need to get your hands dirty, experiment with vst´s, recording and many other things..
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#20
Quote by SamuraiSeven
Thanks to all you veterans, I appreciate all of the knowledge in this thread, I know the notes on the fretboard and how to find what key I'min, the chords in a key, and im learning about secondary dominants and passing tones in my lesson, but this feels like calculus to cashiering.


Do you know all of the intervals? Which intervals combine to make a particular chord? Do you know what a cadence is? The effect of using a particular chord in a progression?

It sounds to me like you have some gaps in your knowledge. You know some theory, but the bits you're missing are stopping you from really understanding it.
#21
Quote by Jyrgen
To write a song you should have something to write about.

You could also try psychedelics


a good musician needs neither of these things. a good musician can write music that exists only for its own sake -- any novice can write a love song when he's feeling heartbroken.

this is not to say that a good musician should ONLY write music that exists for its own sake, but he should not simply wait around for inspiration. good music is more of a craft than an art.
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
#22
Quote by AeolianWolf
a good musician needs neither of these things. a good musician can write music that exists only for its own sake -- any novice can write a love song when he's feeling heartbroken.

this is not to say that a good musician should ONLY write music that exists for its own sake, but he should not simply wait around for inspiration. good music is more of a craft than an art.

I've never even considered this. It kind of makes sense though. Thanks
#23
Quote by Jyrgen
I've never even considered this. It kind of makes sense though. Thanks


just trying to open some minds. honestly, i'm glad you can see the value in it. good luck.
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
#24
I like the idea of trying to write interesting music without having it be from somewhere intensely emotional. I'll impose all kinds of limitations on myself and force myself to write within those confines. I've found that doing so has made me a vastly superior musician than I was before I began practicing that.