#1
Hi i've been playing guitar for a year now and i think i play really good for that time but i just freak out playing in front of other people. i can play SRV and hendrix stuff and i can improvise some blues solos but i mess up some shitty "come as you are" type of riffs when im playing in front of my dad. How can i play in front of other people like i do when im alone?
#2
Play as part of a group first. Doesn't have to be a band, just jam with people. There are 2 main lessons in this.

1) Everyone ****s up occasionally.
2) Finish the song, even when you **** up. People are far more likely to notice if you stop, than if you carry on.
#3
Practice in front of more people.
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#4
I am kinda the same way. I can play along very well to songs at home and whatnot. I go to a store and test a guitar or something, and I just sit there holding the guitar like "how the hell do I play this thing?!?".

Then I piddle out some crappy junk and then leave while hiding my face.


ok maybe not that bad but yeah.. lol
#5
Quote by Dinglebuttz
I am kinda the same way. I can play along very well to songs at home and whatnot. I go to a store and test a guitar or something, and I just sit there holding the guitar like "how the hell do I play this thing?!?".

Then I piddle out some crappy junk and then leave while hiding my face.


ok maybe not that bad but yeah.. lol

I know that feeling. It was one of the reasons that, while I played in bands, I always preferred a simple set up. if i could plug and play, I could get through the awkward bit while the other guitar player was setting up his eleventy bajillion pedals(OK, 4 or 5), so by the time we actually started, I'd loosened up a bit.
#6
Quote by slapsymcdougal
I know that feeling. It was one of the reasons that, while I played in bands, I always preferred a simple set up. if i could plug and play, I could get through the awkward bit while the other guitar player was setting up his eleventy bajillion pedals(OK, 4 or 5), so by the time we actually started, I'd loosened up a bit.


Yeah, I played drums in most my bands so I was always kind of hidden in the back haha. However, I am a way better drummer than I am a guitarist so I never really was shy to play in front of people. That was 10 or so years ago though. Now I just play around the house!
#7
Hey, you are almost there, you can play stuff. Some of us are struggling to get there, well done.
#8
it is just a mental thing. I used to hate playing in front of others at first, but then I realized when I was about 16, girls love music and guys who can play music. Add that to the fact I live on the beach, it was a win-win. I have played live since 2000 and I actually hate not being able to play in front of people when we are not gigging.

I don't want to be the front man, but being on stage is pretty rad if you don't suck
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#9
Performance Anxiety is the term you're looking for.
Most people have it so some degree or another. The amount is generally dependent on your state of mind. When it comes to public speaking I find being very familiar with the topic helps reduce this. For playing in fromt of people the best thing you can do to relax is know what you're playing and concentrate on playing, not on the fear of maling mistakes.
It just takes time and repeated exposures.
Moving on.....
#11
Quote by KenG
Performance Anxiety is the term you're looking for.


oh is it?
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Last edited by gregs1020 at Jul 29, 2015,
#12
You know, when you're learning to play pool, the one thing you must not do is think about missing the shot. Because what happens is that your brain focuses on what's on your mind and more or less makes it a reality.

Take it easy. People wanna listen to music, they're not just waiting to jump on you when you make a mistake and criticize you.

I used to be the same way. It will go away if you get your feet wet playing in front of others. You said that you play in front of your dad. That's great, play some tunes for him and get him to listen to what you're doing. Next, jam with your buddies. Maybe play a gig once the lot of you are a tight band. Next thing you know, you're going nuts on stage every chance you get.

Don't worry about it bro. Focus 90% on your playing and 10% on your stage fright. You'll get over it.
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Last edited by CostasNoir at Jul 29, 2015,
#13
Well, there are two types of people when it comes to performing. There are people who feed on the energy of those around them. And there are those who thrive on being able to zone out the fact that other people are around them.

My guess is that you're the type who needs to be able to "zone" rather than "feed" in regards to spectators.

If you're married or in a committed relationship - you get pretty good at zoning out. Push out everything from your mind that isn't involving the music when performing. To do this - begin a mental checklist prior to playing - what songs, tuning, finger placement, whatever else you can think of, while ignoring everyone else around you, this will help put yourself into a zone. Practice going through your checklist before playing. That way when the time comes, it's natural to simply go through procedure and focus in on playing rather than on the people you are playing for.
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#14
Quote by Dinglebuttz
I am kinda the same way. I can play along very well to songs at home and whatnot. I go to a store and test a guitar or something, and I just sit there holding the guitar like "how the hell do I play this thing?!?".

Then I piddle out some crappy junk and then leave while hiding my face.


ok maybe not that bad but yeah.. lol

I'm kinda the same way.Took a couple of guitars and my bass to my tech when I went to pick them up and give them a spin I couldnt play anything apart from a couple of riffs.Felt a bit embarrassing I know I can play but I just go blank and clam up when playing in front of people.One of the reasons I never took it beyond home playing.I think it was criticism early in my learning days which I never got over and affected me deeply.
#15
It takes time and practice man. You may think you're inadequate with your playing, but every single person playin any instrument has been exact same place you have been. For me, I played in front of people I was comfortable with like family or good friends. My extended family is quite musical so I was intimidated, but I never got any negativity, only support.

Eventually, doing it enough, you will be very comfortable. Even now, when I see some certain people in the crowd at gigs that I look up to, I get nervous lol.
#16
go down to Guitar Center and start playing a bunch of different guitars until you no longer feel nervous when other people are walking bye or near you ,
#17
Quote by adelino316
Hi i've been playing guitar for a year now and i think i play really good for that time but i just freak out playing in front of other people.


The only way to fix this is to play in front of other people. As much as you possibly can.

And find ways to make the whole process fun.
#18
it just takes time. 3 years ago I was as nervous as hell, and would play parts fine but look and feel out of place. Now I get complimented on my stage presence alot. You just need to keep playing infront of people and eventually you'll get better and better of playing infront of people, till it doesnt matter if your playing infront of 3 or 300, you'll be playing as hard as you can.
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#19
http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=nuHfVn_cfHU

Just get out there and DO IT! I used to be super shy but fell in love with a girl in HS who was on the speech team. I joined the team and had to give speeches in front of lots of people. Turned me into the Rambo-like man I am today


..well only the part where he cries at the end of First Blood...
#21
It's all practice dude. I couldn't play in front of people for the life of me, I'd stare at my fretboard like a zombie and stuff up songs I could do with my eyes closed in my room. I started going to an open mic event that was held once a week, and within I'd say 3 weeks (so 3 performances) the improvement was leaps and bounds. It's a great feeling too because once you get used to playing in front of others, instead of thinking about being nervous and stuffing up, you just get to be in the moment and enjoy yourself.

Basically you have to play with or in front of others, no 2 ways about it really.
#22
Play out as much as you can. Find a partner or someone who either sings or plays and go to open mic nights. You'll find others there just like you having the same feelings. JimJamabnx is right, the fear of an audience can diminish quite quickly if you do it regularly. On the other hand for me personally even after 40 years of live experience it never completely goes away and I don't want it to. It's the anticipation of playing and those initial "butterflies" inside that keep it all fresh for me. When playing isn't exciting anymore you know that you've ridden the roller-coaster too many times.

Strangely I can play comfortably in front of hundreds of people no problem. I am most uncomfortable playing to a single person or just one or two. In the same way I can sing a song to a large audience with no issue at all but I feel intimidated singing "Happy Birthday" at a family dinner for someone in my own family. Can't explain it.
Yes I am guitarded also, nice to meet you.
Last edited by Rickholly74 at Jul 31, 2015,
#23
Quote by SpiderM
Well? Did you get the girl?????


Haha yea -actually she was already my gf when I joined. Sorry for the confusion.

I'm married to someone better now though!
#25
Quote by adelino316
Hi i've been playing guitar for a year now and i think i play really good for that time but i just freak out playing in front of other people. i can play SRV and hendrix stuff and i can improvise some blues solos but i mess up some shitty "come as you are" type of riffs when im playing in front of my dad. How can i play in front of other people like i do when im alone?


There is only one way to do this - play in front of people - a lot. It's perfectly normal to have jitters at first. Also, you will never play the same as when you play alone - it will always be different but eventually you will feed off that energy rather than be hindered by it.
#26
I have this problem to varying degrees depending on the day, also with speeches and stuff like this.It's really weird because i've been playing since 2000 and i can rip on the guitar but sometimes when people watch me I just freeze and feel real stupid and can't play, I hate it.
#27
My 2 cents, guitar or any other performance is essential to have confidence. You just gotta get inside yourself and own it. Just remember, if your audience aren't players, they're gonna be impressed and easily dazzled, if they are, they understand the struggle.