#1
So I rarely ever post on these forums because usually there are answers to just about any question I come up with. But I´ve found myself in a strange situation that most people don´t really find themselves in and so I am seeking advice from anyone with a sufficient amount of experience in the world of guitar.

So I´m in the position where the only guitar I have access to, is a crap quality acoustic guitar, that doesn´t have a cut-away and there´s essentially no hope in getting any higher quality instrument for the next year or so.

So my dilema. I love music and I have intentions of pursuing it for pretty much forever. But during this next year and a half, I have limited options for practicing. I have a guitar that kind of sucks, and since there´s no cut away, I´m essentially stuck with a 12 fret guitar (because this acoustic just gets uncomfortable to play past the 13th fret).

That being said, I love progressive metal. I´m talking Animals as Leaders, Vildhjarta, Gojira, Born of Osiris (I consider them prog), Veil of Maya, Aegaeon, and whatever is just atmospheric and generally technical. Of course I love metal core and the like as well.

Liking this type of music, that´s what I wanna play, and therefore I need to practice. But considering that in the world of heavy bands, it´s getting to the point that more range is neccesary with guitars that are just really fast with killer tones and everything, I´m practicing with options on the complete opposite side of the spectrum.

I´ve been playing for a few years now, but mostly just kind of as a side thing and all self taught, and it´s only been until recently that I´ve decided to get serious about theory, and developing really good technique and just all the things that make music sound good.

So with all of this in mind (I like prog music, I only have a crap acoustic guitar with 12 frets, and I need to practice), how can I make the most out of my situation? Are there any benifits to playing on an acoustic with high action and limited fret range? I´m starting to learn a bit of theory and I´m trying to develop better technique and overall speed and dexterity.

What should I practice? How do I practice? Has anyone been in this position before? I mean, I´m playing a 12 fret acoustic with 6 strings, when I want to enter the world of 7+ strings with 24 frets, and killer action, and great tones. I´m trying to be optimistic in thinking that I´ll be way better with a good electric when I get back to one, but I´m not sure. Is it beneficial having such limited range?

I´m really just looking for overall advice and thoughts on how to better my theory, and playing ability with the limited options I have. Help me out?
#2
I was in a similar situation a couple of years back, before i went to college for music. I got into progressive rock and metal during those years, and especially extended range stuff. Only owning six-stringed guitars, i learned a lot of seven string material by pitch shifting the songs up a perfect fourth, so they fitted standard tuning (Obviously not when dealing with lead section, but for the rhythm stuff).

The best you can do is probably to take a similar approach. I mean you have the same collection of notes between the open string and then 12th fret as between the 12th and 24th fret, the difference is in the octave things are being played. You could learn the stuff that is played above the 12th fret below the 12th fret aswell. That is probably as close as you are going to get without having an instrument that fits with what was used by the band.

Transposing is your friend.
Fusion and jazz musician, a fan of most music.

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#4
There's a ton of theory you could learn with what you have.

I wouldn't say you could play animals as leaders with your acoustic but you could with time build yourself up in theory to understand what's all going on in that type of genre and learning with an electric at that point would be an easy change.
Just another Sheep in the design of the Almighty Machine.


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#5
wow! what? you can access after 12 fret, don't give up my friend. Even i own a cheap acoustic guitar. It really sounds shitty when i strum. So what i did was..i learnt lead parts, learnt new scales, tried improvising with those scales. You can easily get to any level if you follow suggestions from the best guitarists like steve vai (Check out his work out exercises) or joe satriani's tip. I know they dont play heavy music very often but you will get a very positive result once you start taking tips from the best guitar player. One thing that i learnt was to hold the pick in various angles ( a lesson by paul gilbert) and guess what? i practice all these exercise om my cheap acoustic guitar, its quite boring but i know it will make me a good technical player. So i suggest get more inspiration and start practicing from now on!!

Here's my progress, i have been playing for a year now(tried taking as many tips from various ppl):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vMUYZF2VxVM
#7
This is a perfect time to do some real work and branching out. It is what you make of it.
You can study theory, learn a new style that works within the constraints of your guitar, practice timing, finger picking, write songs etc….

Go buy some books or open the ones you already have. Become a student of guitar.

Victor Wooten (yes a bass player) has a great DVD called 'Groove Bass Workshop' it is great for all musicians. He covers 10 things that will make you a better guitarist.

Listening
Space
Phrasing
Rhythm/tempo
Dynamics
Tone
Emotion/feel
Technique
Articulation
Notes/melody/anything dealing with notes
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qJHkGWwu3vY

Good luck & study hard
#8
Quote by tsever02
So I rarely ever post on these forums because usually there are answers to just about any question I come up with. But I´ve found myself in a strange situation that most people don´t really find themselves in and so I am seeking advice from anyone with a sufficient amount of experience in the world of guitar.

So I´m in the position where the only guitar I have access to, is a crap quality acoustic guitar, that doesn´t have a cut-away and there´s essentially no hope in getting any higher quality instrument for the next year or so.

So my dilema. I love music and I have intentions of pursuing it for pretty much forever. But during this next year and a half, I have limited options for practicing. I have a guitar that kind of sucks, and since there´s no cut away, I´m essentially stuck with a 12 fret guitar (because this acoustic just gets uncomfortable to play past the 13th fret).

That being said, I love progressive metal. I´m talking Animals as Leaders, Vildhjarta, Gojira, Born of Osiris (I consider them prog), Veil of Maya, Aegaeon, and whatever is just atmospheric and generally technical. Of course I love metal core and the like as well.

Liking this type of music, that´s what I wanna play, and therefore I need to practice. But considering that in the world of heavy bands, it´s getting to the point that more range is neccesary with guitars that are just really fast with killer tones and everything, I´m practicing with options on the complete opposite side of the spectrum.

I´ve been playing for a few years now, but mostly just kind of as a side thing and all self taught, and it´s only been until recently that I´ve decided to get serious about theory, and developing really good technique and just all the things that make music sound good.

So with all of this in mind (I like prog music, I only have a crap acoustic guitar with 12 frets, and I need to practice), how can I make the most out of my situation? Are there any benifits to playing on an acoustic with high action and limited fret range? I´m starting to learn a bit of theory and I´m trying to develop better technique and overall speed and dexterity.

What should I practice? How do I practice? Has anyone been in this position before? I mean, I´m playing a 12 fret acoustic with 6 strings, when I want to enter the world of 7+ strings with 24 frets, and killer action, and great tones. I´m trying to be optimistic in thinking that I´ll be way better with a good electric when I get back to one, but I´m not sure. Is it beneficial having such limited range?

I´m really just looking for overall advice and thoughts on how to better my theory, and playing ability with the limited options I have. Help me out?


1) No cutaway : Classical guitarists do a lot more with a lot less. This is a non issue for now. Just avoid playing in the upper register. Everything past the 12th fret is just a mirror of the first twelve frets. If you learn your way around the first twelve frets, you can use that knowledge to play higher up the fretboard. The learning curve won't be high, you just need to adapt to the smaller frets.

3) What to practice - you'll have to focus on music that can be played on a acoustic for now. If you have a guitar with terrible action, then the more technical things will be very difficult. You may want to spend this time learning songs, scales and chord progression theory.

4) Gypsy and Bluegrass style guitar are the better fitted "technical" styles on acoustic - If you can nail down some Tony Rice or some Django Reidhart, you won't have any trouble shredding on electric when you get one.
#9
Hey there, as it turns out I'm a big fan of Vildjharta et al and I can hopefully give you a few useful tips.

First of all, you can actually learn plenty of stuff on your current guitar. You may have to learn it in a higher or lower key than the original, but that's just fine. Something that can be fun is if you tune UP a half step or put a capo on 1, you can play along with 8 strings in F standard (Meshuggah!) or tunes in Drop F (Vildjharta!) an octave higher. Not ideal but certainly a fun way to get going with the music you're passionate about.

Secondly, all the basics are the same, good technique is good technique. If you can groove an acoustic you can groove on an electric and vice versa. Learn everything you can to the highest standard and when you can spend on gear it'll sound fantastic!

Finally, depending on circumstances, this may be time to learn about saving or get a part time job. I don't know why your practice time is limited but you can get a decent seven string for reasonably cheap. Lets say €350. That's not an eternity of work in a first world country (eg, here in Ireland that's approx 40 hours work at minimum wage). Alternatively, if you can cut €10 of frivolities a week you'll have a new guitar in less than a year. Again, I know nothing about your life and it may be very hard for you to save money or find work.

Regardless, THALL.
#10
Thanks for all the tips guys! I appreciate all the help. I´m actually serving as a missionary right now (believe it or not) and so in my current state I´m busy pretty much every day with limited funds which is why I´m away from my guitar and am stuck with the junky one I´m with. I´m taking this time to serve others but I also realized that I don´t want to let time go wasted with practicing so that´s why I posted this thread.

I´m starting to realize that it´s really just a mental block (with a few physical limitations) that I need to overcome in order to do the thing. Some of the mental blocks I have is that I become bored easily if my fingers aren´t doing a whole lot of work, or if there aren´t rich chords in use. Also, I just have a general dislike of playing music that´s played in higher tunings (*IMO 2 semitones below standard like drop C is superior due to the fact that C is so central*), or generally boring to play. So I´m not gonna take time to learn stuff that can be learned easily on an acoustic (ie pop music), even though that´s what anyone else would do. Anyway, just mental blocks that I need to overcome, as well as the other blocks that I mentioned like lack of time and an overall crap guitar. I can say though, that I really appreciate the responses and I´ll keep working at it whenever I have opportunities.
#12
Study Tommy Emmanuel. When you can play his stuff on an acoustic you will kill-it on an electric in a few years.

Your missionary leadership might even appreciate this one:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=niT2q0ElP4g
"Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It's the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use." -- Stevie Ray Vaughan

"Anybody can play. The note is only 20 percent. The attitude of the motherfucker who plays it is 80 percent." -- Miles Davis

Guthrie on tone: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmohdG9lLqY