#1
I've been playing for about 2 years and no matter how slow I progress through a song or how hard I try to play cleanly, I always fumble somewhere and mess up. I use guitar pro and I start learning solos at about 50% and increase speed when I'm comfortable but still can't manage to play cleanly at full speed.

I also have been trying to work with a metronome but that doesn't seem to help either. What's the secret?!? I have a feeling the answer is practice.
im a n00b!
#2
don't practice, you'll get better over time if you really want it.

loljk practice more
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#3
I've heard keeping a hair band (like a rubber band) on the first fret if your playing solos works. I've tried it but the band was too stretched. if you don't understand what I'm talking about (cuz I tend to **** sentences up a lot), heres a vid:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XRMUBNRM18E
He also has some other tips on how to play cleaner so yeah.
#5
It takes a while to get used to practicing with a metronome. One trick is to actually leave it running while you go and do other things around the house - because the first thing people find out about metronomes is how irritating they are when you try to play with them. This way, you kind of programme yourself to accept it plus the speed at which you set it also works in your favour and you'll find out why for yourself on that one.

Playing cleaner takes time. Listen to whatever you're playing, listen for the inflections and replicate. So this means that wherever you stumble, you focus on that single part and only that part. (Assuming you're picking with your right hand) Look at your right hand to see if it's coming from there... and then the left hand. Perhaps your right hand is hooking at a specific point - this means a workout on a specific technique. Perhaps your left hand is too slanted (and it really takes time to learn how to play flat across the neck). Meaning, perhaps one of your fingers is interfering with the next string and you're not aware of it.

Short of that, go see a teacher for a quick one on one.

The other side of the coin is... perhaps you're not relaxed enough when you are playing. Don't aim for perfection... just capture the essence of the piece. Perfection puts a lot of strain on you, and then you just never get it right because something will always be wrong. I think Freepower has a couple of vids on youtube that might address one of your problems.

But yes, you have to practice more. But now you also have to be aware of both sides, left and right. You have to be able to pinpoint the problem and proceed to work on correcting it.

Hope this helps
#6
Quote by TerriThrash
I've heard keeping a hair band (like a rubber band) on the first fret if your playing solos works.

Using a band is fine in some instances, but if you're using it to make up for sloppy technique then you're doing yourself more harm than good. Might as well go after the root of the problem.
Quote by thawyre
I've been playing for about 2 years and no matter how slow I progress through a song or how hard I try to play cleanly, I always fumble somewhere and mess up. I use guitar pro and I start learning solos at about 50% and increase speed when I'm comfortable but still can't manage to play cleanly at full speed.

I'd start slower, to be honest. On some particularly complex things I'll start at 25 or 30 percent just to make sure I've got it down. If you're starting higher, sometimes you can develop bad habits that will get worse as you try to speed up. Keep in mind that when you're at 50%, you're trying to do two things at once: play the solo and learn it. If you go at a slower tempo, you give your brain time to process everything and your fingers will move more efficiently and accurately. After you've learned the solo at a slow tempo (so it's only a matter of playing it now), your fingers will have developed correct movements to play it and it'll come much more naturally.
#7
Find your problems spots and figure out what it is exactly that you are fumbling. Break that aspect down and find a solution: hand position and angle, where on your finger you contact, playing it with more or less gusto, etc.
#8
I agree with everything :-D said, you just have to focus on what's holding you back.

I would also go back to songs you know and can play, songs that you feel you've mastered and try and play them cleaner. I've noticed now that there are songs I'm playing that I tried learning when I first began playing and I play them so much more efficiently now and much cleaner.
So try to play songs you've already mastered, cleaner and better.

Just pay attention to the way you grab the strings and pick it and maybe you're doing something wrong.

I'd check out some paul gilbert lesson videos, because he really helped me learn to play clean, even though alot of it is shred licks, I really benefited from it.
Also do you do warm ups? If your hand is warmed up you'll definitely play with more finesse.

If you can incorporate the workouts from Steve Vai's 30 hour guitar workout and maybe John Petruccis Rock Discipline, that will help you.

I'm sure there's an article on UG that has all of this info.
And we will weave in and out of sanity unnoticed
Swirling in blissfully restless visions of all our bleary progress
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#9
Thanks for the tips guys! I will use some of your recommended techniques and hope for the best. I will also try that 30 hour workout. I dont know about 10 hours a day though lol.
im a n00b!
#10
Quote by thawyre
I've been playing for about 2 years and no matter how slow I progress through a song or how hard I try to play cleanly, I always fumble somewhere and mess up. I use guitar pro and I start learning solos at about 50% and increase speed when I'm comfortable but still can't manage to play cleanly at full speed.

I also have been trying to work with a metronome but that doesn't seem to help either. What's the secret?!? I have a feeling the answer is practice.

jusat keep practicing and taking things slow. if there is a fast part, focus on the phrasing and not so much the speed. speed is a by product of accuracy.
#11
focus more, play slower and use a metronome.
all the best.
(insert self-aggrandizing quote here)
#12
Quote by TerriThrash
I've heard keeping a hair band (like a rubber band) on the first fret if your playing solos works. I've tried it but the band was too stretched. if you don't understand what I'm talking about (cuz I tend to **** sentences up a lot), heres a vid:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XRMUBNRM18E
He also has some other tips on how to play cleaner so yeah.


I wouldn't do this in TS current position, as it will only allow him to get away with sloppy technique and you can't play with that rubber band on all the time as you will often need those open strings, so might as well get used to muting them correctly.

TS: You should check out some videos of muting unwanted strings on Youtube, if you haven't. I think Freepower (UG legend and mod) has some on that topic (you should check out the rest of his videos too because they are all high quality and insightful).
It might seem annoying now, but this really is only a matter of time spent practising, and 2 years isn't that long in terms of guitarplaying (unless you're some kind of prodigy or are practicing 10 hours a day or something). Just keep practising hard and as you and your instrument starts becoming more as one, these issues will eventually start to solve themselves.
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#13
Remember that playing slow won't do you a lick of good if you don't pay attention and think your way through the problems you're having. If you don't correct anything then you'll just be very thoroughly pounding poor playing into your list of habits by practicing them slowly.
#14
I guess you need practice. Pick a song to play and repeat it 50 times. Focus on it and do your best to improve your skill.

I hope this will work. It at least worked for me.
Last edited by gReese at Jan 24, 2012,
#15
I have a 5 part series on picking accuracy.

http://mikedodge.freeforums.org/play-this-to-a-metronome-series-picking-accuracy-t45.html

Picking Accuracy Part 1: Even Attack, Warming Up, Due Diligence, Training Fido
Picking Accuracy Part 2: Crosspicking, managing exercises
Picking Accuracy Part 3: String Skipping, and waking up the picking hand
Picking Accuracy Part 4: Pick Control and Skating on the Fretboard
Picking Accuracy Part 5: Al Di Meola's Golden Suite Dawn, palm muting

It'll teach you how to play clean.