#1
This is something that's always held me back. I've just never got it to be able to play without the song I'm playing also playing

And how would you about learning to shred??? Something I've wanted to do for ages, but haven't managed yet.

Currently, I'm rebuilding my guitar playing from the ground up to and getting rid off all my mistakes that had built up over the years (I even somehow managed to lose my book with all my notes on tunings, modes, scales songs, notes on the guitar, tablature, traditional sheet music, alternate tunings etc so looks like I'll have to rebuild that from scratch)
#2
Metronome, start painfully slow, learn to play the different note lengths at the temp (i.e. whole, quarter, triplet) do until it becomes almost like breathing, then increase the tempo SLOWLY and build up. For songs, practice to a metronome. "shred" is just playing fast, which only sounds good if you can play cleanly, in order to do so have to start very slow as said above
#3
Metronome. and COUNT. Always count. Knowing where the downbeat is is just as important as keeping the tempo.

Make a workout of playing scales with the metronome. Play them as quarter notes, 8ths, triplets, and 16ths. It's good for your rhythm, technique, and fretboard knowledge. 15min a day of scales with the metronome and you'll start getting in shape.
#4
Dude, if you play guitar by yourself with no other people, over time you almost certainly will get bad timing issues. It can't be helped. It has to do with your internal rhythm which is based on your heartbeat and if you are having fun your heart beats faster so the rhythm goes faster and you play faster and start cutting rests short and holding the cool sounding notes longer and you don't even know it. Some guys naturally have good timing, like the perfect pitch guys..a thing to be envied. If you are a regular person and don't have those inborn skills, you gotta build them thru practice and training your ear and heart to know the right pitch and time. To build timing you can count and use metronomes, I know it's practice but that took away from the fun and exploration of the guitar for me. Count count, count dull..you have to learn to' feel' the time. I use an app called 'i Real B'. It's for android stuff and available at the Google Play Store. It's like a drum,bass, and rhythm program that is super easy to program your favorite songs so you have a somewhat real rhythm track to play at your command. You can speed it up, slow it down, loop it, change keys. It's like a cheapy version of Garage Band/Band in a Box. The app is like $10. It really made the difference for my timing. Now when I show up at band practice, I'm prepared and don't have to listen to a smirking drummer telling be about syncopations and stuff. The app helps me 'feel' it much faster than just counting in my bedroom. I hope it helps you out.
Last edited by dastop20 at May 26, 2014,
#5
Also try working at very slow tempos, which can be harder than playing fast. If you have a metronome that can do it, try 40BPM with just two beats per bar, say beat 1 & 3, and play something very simple such as a single chord stab or a single note on each beat. You might be surprised how hard this is.
#6
Keeping time and learning to "shred"... Metronome. No-one enjoys doing it, but it is the single best way. Also learning to "shred" isn't a single technique in itself. Playing fast is a result of playing accurate, and accuracy comes from practice. If you can't play accurate you can't play fast. Simple as that.
#7
Good advice above. I would also add that you should learn how to read music if timing doesn't come naturally to you.
#8
You know what happens with a computer when you overload it with too much to do at once, where it slows down and one of those tasks suffers. That's what happens with me and timing. I've always been told tap my foot when I play, but there's two problems I can't really tell where to tap my foot unless I have a metronome (I've downloaded one now so that's something) or I can't play and tap at the same time and keep them both to a good standard.

Question for you guys, does seeing other guitarists or encourage or discourage you? I find it tends to do the negative thing with me. Guitar hasn't hit that point where it's clicked yet where it just all comes together (don't know why as it's been 8 years. I was good at one point though , but I have fallen :'( )
#9
Take percussion lessons. If that doesn't solve your beat problem, nothing will.
#10
Quote by epic FUZZ
You know what happens with a computer when you overload it with too much to do at once, where it slows down and one of those tasks suffers. That's what happens with me and timing. I've always been told tap my foot when I play, but there's two problems I can't really tell where to tap my foot unless I have a metronome (I've downloaded one now so that's something) or I can't play and tap at the same time and keep them both to a good standard.


Concentrate on timing most of all. If you're off time even the biggest musical moron listening/watching will notice. Also a solid sense of timing is something you can work on any where and at any time as long as you can listen to music. Tap your foot to anything and everything you listen to, or nod your head, any physical motion that will get the groove grained in to your mind.

For example I'm sitting here listening to some cool fusion stuff and all the while I'm typing this I'm nodding in time to the beat. I've started tapping my foot to all the music I listen to while I sit down. I've been walking in time as much as physically possible for years.

The idea is to get your sense of time to a point at which you only have to think when it's a real challenge; at least keeping time in 4/4 and other really standard time signatures should be second nature to you.

If you're having trouble keeping time and playing with your hands then it's probably worth spending some time away from the guitar just listening to music, finding the groove and doing something physically that keeps time as part of your regular practice. It'll become very easy quickly enough.

Quote by epic FUZZ
Question for you guys, does seeing other guitarists or encourage or discourage you? I find it tends to do the negative thing with me. Guitar hasn't hit that point where it's clicked yet where it just all comes together (don't know why as it's been 8 years. I was good at one point though , but I have fallen :'( )


I used to get discouraged but these days I take it as a sign that there is still so much more for me to learn and do... and that's AWESOME!

If you find yourself taking the negative away from it then you need to realise that time (in terms of days, months, years, whatever) is only one factor in how someone learns. The experience between different people is so radically different as to be completely incomparable so comparing yourself to them directly is like comparing apples with exoplanets made of diamond.

You are an individual and your experience of the world is unique, which includes guitar. That's very easy to forget in the face of some of the players out there but try and remember it.

Quote by reverb66
Take percussion lessons. If that doesn't solve your beat problem, nothing will.


I don't think that's really a solution for most people.
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#11
Quote by Zaphod_Beeblebr



I don't think that's really a solution for most people.


I think, based on his posts, that his problem with time keeping is pretty severe. I've known two people like that in my entire life, and neither has solved the problem. They simply can't naturally feel time and don't have an instinct for simple things most take for granted, like how many bars a riff normally lasts etc.

The reason I suggest something that drastic is to get him off the guitar and working with a professional on straight rhythms with his hands. I think many of you aren't quite grasping the severity of the problem. It may be an unsolvable problem, but his best bet is to focus purely on rhythm and hope that it works.
#12
Quote by reverb66
I think, based on his posts, that his problem with time keeping is pretty severe. I've known two people like that in my entire life, and neither has solved the problem. They simply can't naturally feel time and don't have an instinct for simple things most take for granted, like how many bars a riff normally lasts etc.

The reason I suggest something that drastic is to get him off the guitar and working with a professional on straight rhythms with his hands. I think many of you aren't quite grasping the severity of the problem. It may be an unsolvable problem, but his best bet is to focus purely on rhythm and hope that it works.


Actually I was thinking more in terms of practicality: time and money. It would be a solution if it was practical but I'm assuming it isn't because I don't think it is for most people.
R.I.P. My Signature. Lost to us in the great Signature Massacre of 2014.

Quote by Master Foo
“A man who mistakes secrets for knowledge is like a man who, seeking light, hugs a candle so closely that he smothers it and burns his hand.”


Album.
Legion.
#14
There's some great advice here. I would strongly recommend not just using a metronome, but playing to backing tracks. Also go out and jam with your buddies whenever you can. I think it's extremely important that when you learn to play fast, you don't just learn how to play the chromatic scale faster than your best friend can; you need to be able to apply what you learn to musical situations. A huge part of shredding is based off of the modes of the major scale. I highly recommend you learn that, it'll unlock a world of possibilities for you (these are also the scales usually used in shredding). But remember, take it slow, painfully slow at first, make sure you can do everything perfectly cleanly, and then move on to higher speeds. Motivation and putting the necessary time and practice is absolutely essential to becoming a great shredder.

Remember, musicality, sense of melody and putting feeling into what you play, are more important than playing fast. Besides, blazing up and down the fretboard without any emotion whatsoever is boring for you and those listening. True masters are able to blend fast playing and musicality, like Guthrie Govan and Shawn Lane. Also make sure you're bends and VIBRATO are good. I can't stress how important it is to have good vibrato; it's what separates guys like Yngwie Malmsteen from the amateurs. And bad, nervous sounding vibrato will totally ruin any fast scale run or series of arpeggios.

Oh, and don't be the guy who plays sloppy arpeggios through a line 6 set to insane distortion and volume at 11 at Guitar Center :P

Good luck man!
#15
Quote by evhledzep5150

Remember, musicality, sense of melody and putting feeling into what you play, are more important than playing fast. Besides, blazing up and down the fretboard without any emotion whatsoever is boring for you and those listening. True masters are able to blend fast playing and musicality, like Guthrie Govan and Shawn Lane. Also make sure you're bends and VIBRATO are good. I can't stress how important it is to have good vibrato; it's what separates guys like Yngwie Malmsteen from the amateurs. And bad, nervous sounding vibrato will totally ruin any fast scale run or series of arpeggios.


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