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#1
Please be brutally honest, what level of playing will two hours of practice a day get me? I will list my practice routine below.

-Scales: 30 mins.
-Speed building Exercise:30 or more mins.
-Sweep picking: 30 or more mins
-Tapping: 30 mins. (thinking about shortening/removing this and extending other areas until I find a better way to practice this.)

Pretty simple, possibly too simple.

Lets say I want to play like this:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dyQJH615KwA

What do I need to do? I know two hours isn't enough, but what is? I'm fairly reclusive, but I don't know if even I can find 9 hours or whatever to practice. That's not even considering whether or not I have that kind of work ethic. Please feel free to suggest things or even alter the list above as you see fit. Thanks.
Last edited by Cheeseshark at Nov 29, 2015,
#2
Depends on the person, scales, diligence etc. But 2 hours a day of practice will make you far better than about 90% of average guitar players at least in my experience.

Are you using PebberBrowns guitar practice?

As far as "enough" it depends what you want in reality. As far as professional guitar players go the top of the top make a living on it so they don't have to attend university or a job per say. The y have all day to play and if they are as good as bucket head for example its less about having the Work ethic and more the fact he enjoys that kind of thing.

Do you have a practice schedule atm? 2 hours is going to burn you out if you haven't got a decent schedule already. If not start with something short like 15 minutes and after you get used to that up it to 30 etc. Similar to body building you don't just jump into a twice a day 2 hour routine, you gotta start small.

Most guitarists I've met don't even practice for 15 minutes a day, so already that will put you far ahead of the curve.
#3
Quality over quantity. Are you extremely focused when practicing or are you just going through the motions?
#4
Quote by Blicer
Depends on the person, scales, diligence etc. But 2 hours a day of practice will make you far better than about 90% of average guitar players at least in my experience.
When you say average guitar players are you referring to the campfire chord strumming sort?

Quote by Blicer
Are you using PebberBrowns guitar practice?
No, I've had it recommended by people who took lessons from him, but I only watched about 20 minutes of one of his videos. The speed building exercise as well as the sweeping exercise that I originally used were both from John Petrucci's Rock Discipline DvD.

Quote by Blicer
As far as "enough" it depends what you want in reality. As far as professional guitar players go the top of the top make a living on it so they don't have to attend university or a job per say. The y have all day to play and if they are as good as bucket head for example its less about having the Work ethic and more the fact he enjoys that kind of thing.
Yeah, I've heard that Yngwie and Steve Vai practiced 9-10 hours a day. Never got how someone could put in that much focused practice in a day while supporting themselves, but I guess you kinda answered that qustion.

Quote by Blicer
Do you have a practice schedule atm? 2 hours is going to burn you out if you haven't got a decent schedule already. If not start with something short like 15 minutes and after you get used to that up it to 30 etc. Similar to body building you don't just jump into a twice a day 2 hour routine, you gotta start small.

Most guitarists I've met don't even practice for 15 minutes a day, so already that will put you far ahead of the curve.
I don't really have any kind of schedule at the moment, I just kinda practice whenever and get as much done in one sitting as I can. I was considering thinking something up today, but I'm not really sure what would be an ideal way to split up my routine. Any thoughts?

Quote by Black_devils
Quality over quantity. Are you extremely focused when practicing or are you just going through the motions?
That sorta depends on what I'm practicing. If I'm doing something that I find less than interesting, such as running major scales or tapping, I'll usually listen to a podcast or watch something during that section. But for stuff that I practice along to a metronome I try to focus solely on my practicing.
Last edited by Cheeseshark at Nov 29, 2015,
#5
it will get you what it gets you. no one can tell you oh yeah do that for x number of days/weeks and low and behold you wil be awesome. will it help almost definitely. remeber that just learning someone elses music isn't even half the battle. to really be a guitar player you have to be able to create your own music to some degree. as for the practice much of it depends on how well you understand what you are doing, why etc. once you understand what and why then it becomes easier. last but not least be realistic. i wanted to be yngwie back in the day but even after 35+ years of playing i'm not and it's not likely i will be. i live with that and turned my focus to more realistic goals that play on my strengths as a player. much happier rather tha trying to force something.
#6
Where's the repertoire? Technique doesn't do much good if you're not applying it to real music.

If you are just getting your technique into shape, I'd do that routine a couple days a week and use the others to work on music. Once you get a technique down you won't need to practice it by itself very often, just put it in your daily warm ups for a few minutes and use songs to keep the technique active.

For myself, I typically do 3 hours a day +/- and rarely work on technique for more than one of those hours. If I want to work up a skill like sweep picking, I'll just put some sweep scales and arpeggios in my warm up routine a few days a week. Having worked up the technique before, it only takes 5-10 minutes a day to get it back to usefulness.

But always have repertoire that you're working on, and treat it with the same studiousness that you're giving your technique.
Last edited by cdgraves at Nov 30, 2015,
#7
I also recommend Pebber Brown videos. He improved my playing more than I thought was possible. He teached buckethead for like 10 years, so he got almost all he's skill from Pebber. Everyone thinks it's PG but it's not. I'd recommend you watch he's video and follow he's practice routine, as yours is missing lots of the basics out.
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#8
Sorry but to be brutally honest, you wont get very far just "practicing" for 2 hours per day. This is why so many people give up, or take decades before becoming a decent guitar player.

I tried for 10 years until one day I had the bright idea to take lessons...

If you really want to play like that, why not find a guitar teacher?

I suggest you start your journey at the Paul Gilbert School of Rock Guitar! Its only $35/month.
http://artistworks.com/guitar-lessons-paul-gilbert

Once you make that initial investment, you will be more willing to invest further, perhaps in a teacher in your local area, or Tom Hess online lessons...

You need a real strategy to become a pro player.
You need consistent training in many more areas of music than you have in your practice routine, so many things you cant even list them all. Most of them wont make sense.

You cant master an instrument just by randomly doing stuff thats like trying to home-school to become a surgeon lol
#10
What is your goal in learning to play? Will this routine get you to where you want be as a player?

When I was younger and saw bands playing on TV I immediately wanted to do that. I wanted to play in a band. I chose to play guitar because that's the instrument that interested me the most. I think I could have just as easily decided to play drums or bass or keyboards but my goal was to join a band and play with other musicians so I learned some basics on guitar and as soon as I felt a little confidence I auditioned for a band with players who played a little better than I did. Initially we were awful of course and we struggled through many months of playing in the basement and garages before our awful sound became a tighter less awful sound. Only a few months after putting the band together we weaseled our way into an actual regular gig and I have been playing gigs now for more than 40 years.

The point is I wasn't initially trying be a great guitar player, I wanted to be a good enough player to be in band and perform to a live audience. In order to get into a better band and play more often to bigger audiences I practiced and got better. My goal was and still is to be a better player so I could play with better musicians. It's always been that way, so when I read a question like "What will two hours a day of this routine get me?" I ask, "What is your goal?"
Yes I am guitarded also, nice to meet you.
Last edited by Rickholly74 at Dec 1, 2015,
#13
Quote by monwobobbo
it will get you what it gets you. no one can tell you oh yeah do that for x number of days/weeks and low and behold you wil be awesome. will it help almost definitely. remeber that just learning someone elses music isn't even half the battle. to really be a guitar player you have to be able to create your own music to some degree. as for the practice much of it depends on how well you understand what you are doing, why etc. once you understand what and why then it becomes easier. last but not least be realistic. i wanted to be yngwie back in the day but even after 35+ years of playing i'm not and it's not likely i will be. i live with that and turned my focus to more realistic goals that play on my strengths as a player. much happier rather tha trying to force something.

Yeah, it's starting to become more and more obvious to me that nobody can really tell me how long I need to practice to achieve something

Quote by cdgraves
Where's the repertoire? Technique doesn't do much good if you're not applying it to real music.

If you are just getting your technique into shape, I'd do that routine a couple days a week and use the others to work on music. Once you get a technique down you won't need to practice it by itself very often, just put it in your daily warm ups for a few minutes and use songs to keep the technique active.

For myself, I typically do 3 hours a day +/- and rarely work on technique for more than one of those hours. If I want to work up a skill like sweep picking, I'll just put some sweep scales and arpeggios in my warm up routine a few days a week. Having worked up the technique before, it only takes 5-10 minutes a day to get it back to usefulness.

But always have repertoire that you're working on, and treat it with the same studiousness that you're giving your technique.

That's the real issue honestly. 90% of the music I want to play requires a level of skill that I don't possess yet. Finding music that I enjoy that I can also play is getting more difficult. That's why I decided to create an actual practice routine. Most of the leads are simply to fast for me to play, thus the lead oriented routine.

Quote by Guitar137335
I also recommend Pebber Brown videos. He improved my playing more than I thought was possible. He teached buckethead for like 10 years, so he got almost all he's skill from Pebber. Everyone thinks it's PG but it's not. I'd recommend you watch he's video and follow he's practice routine, as yours is missing lots of the basics out.

Yeah, my instructor actually took lessons from him at the same time as Buckethead. I believe that's where he first met him actually. I really do mean to watch his videos, I just keep forgetting.

Quote by maltmn
Sorry but to be brutally honest, you wont get very far just "practicing" for 2 hours per day. This is why so many people give up, or take decades before becoming a decent guitar player.

I tried for 10 years until one day I had the bright idea to take lessons...

If you really want to play like that, why not find a guitar teacher?

I suggest you start your journey at the Paul Gilbert School of Rock Guitar! Its only $35/month.
http://artistworks.com/guitar-lessons-paul-gilbert

Once you make that initial investment, you will be more willing to invest further, perhaps in a teacher in your local area, or Tom Hess online lessons...

You need a real strategy to become a pro player.
You need consistent training in many more areas of music than you have in your practice routine, so many things you cant even list them all. Most of them wont make sense.

You cant master an instrument just by randomly doing stuff thats like trying to home-school to become a surgeon lol


I actually do have a teacher, I just haven't been too focused on the theory assignments he's been giving me. Something I've been meaning to get around to for a while now.

Quote by ColoradoMac
OP - so, when during your practice schedule do you actually learn to play a song??

Yeah I'm beginning to think that I really should make that a part of it. Now I just need to find a song to work on.

Quote by Rickholly74
What is your goal in learning to play? Will this routine get you to where you want be as a player?

When I was younger and saw bands playing on TV I immediately wanted to do that. I wanted to play in a band. I chose to play guitar because that's the instrument that interested me the most. I think I could have just as easily decided to play drums or bass or keyboards but my goal was to join a band and play with other musicians so I learned some basics on guitar and as soon as I felt a little confidence I auditioned for a band with players who played a little better than I did. Initially we were awful of course and we struggled through many months of playing in the basement and garages before our awful sound became a tighter less awful sound. Only a few months after putting the band together we weaseled our way into an actual regular gig and I have been playing gigs now for more than 40 years.

The point is I wasn't initially trying be a great guitar player, I wanted to be a good enough player to be in band and perform to a live audience. In order to get into a better band and play more often to bigger audiences I practiced and got better. My goal was and still is to be a better player so I could play with better musicians. It's always been that way, so when I read a question like "What will two hours a day of this routine get me?" I ask, "What is your goal?"


Quote by Jimjambanx

I suppose my goal would be to become good enough to play music I enjoy, and eventually to create my own music. And if that leads to or requires being in a band one day, then I'm not opposed to that. I actually coincidentally just last night watched another video in which Guthrie says the same thing. So I guess I've been thinking about that a bit.
Last edited by Cheeseshark at Dec 2, 2015,
#14
The problem is, 90% of guitar teachers wont actually get you the RESULT that you truly want.

They will "teach" you stuff... but thats not enough.

You need to find someone who can TRAIN you. These teachers will make you actually PRACTICE 80% of the lesson while they just watch you practice. They will make you do a bunch of different exercises during the lesson and make sure that you are actually making massive progress...

Studying theory is not so important. Theory is something they like to talk about all day but talking doesnt help. When i teach theory i make my students learn a scale, then this:

* scale patterns
* improvising training
* changing keys
* switching between scales
* speed drills
* licks + techniques
* ear training
* fretboard memory
* songwriting

etc

All of these things within the context of the scale. Consequently my students enjoy studying theory, understand why it helps, actually practice at home, and get BIG results from our lessons.

Theory ONLY helps if you can actually apply it to guitar playing. Otherwise its just information, which can easily be found on the internet.

Think of a guitar teacher like a soccer coach or a gym trainer.

If your teacher is giving you "assignments" to do at home, then that is not enough. Of course you wont do it. He needs to make you actually do it in the lesson. Make him WATCH you practice your assignments for an hour. THEN you will improve. Ask him to watch you do it next lesson. Dont let him babble all day, make him watch you practice.

Does a gym trainer lecture all day?
Does a soccer coach lecture all day?

No, they just watch people feel pain. Lol
Last edited by maltmn at Dec 2, 2015,
#15
Years. You'll need to practice more things than what's in that routine, and you might never get to buckethead's level. That's the brutal honest truth.

If you want to get as good as possible as fast as possible, then find a GOOD teacher. You could practice for 2 hrs and go nowhere, or practice for 10 min, and take a big step.

If you want to become elite, you will need to make sacrifices. It will take time. You will need to make time for it. The best guitarists in the world have talent, and put lots of hours into it. That's what you're up against.
Last edited by fingrpikingood at Dec 2, 2015,
#16
Tom Hess is a really good online teacher. He might actually help you somewhat reach Bucketheads level. Worked for me at least, now I can shred like a beast.
Not quite as fast but way faster than I ever thought possible for me.
#17
Quote by maltmn
The problem is, 90% of guitar teachers wont actually get you the RESULT that you truly want.

They will "teach" you stuff... but thats not enough.

You need to find someone who can TRAIN you. These teachers will make you actually PRACTICE 80% of the lesson while they just watch you practice. They will make you do a bunch of different exercises during the lesson and make sure that you are actually making massive progress...

Studying theory is not so important. Theory is something they like to talk about all day but talking doesnt help. When i teach theory i make my students learn a scale, then this:

* scale patterns
* improvising training
* changing keys
* switching between scales
* speed drills
* licks + techniques
* ear training
* fretboard memory
* songwriting

etc

All of these things within the context of the scale. Consequently my students enjoy studying theory, understand why it helps, actually practice at home, and get BIG results from our lessons.

Theory ONLY helps if you can actually apply it to guitar playing. Otherwise its just information, which can easily be found on the internet.

Think of a guitar teacher like a soccer coach or a gym trainer.

If your teacher is giving you "assignments" to do at home, then that is not enough. Of course you wont do it. He needs to make you actually do it in the lesson. Make him WATCH you practice your assignments for an hour. THEN you will improve. Ask him to watch you do it next lesson. Dont let him babble all day, make him watch you practice.

Does a gym trainer lecture all day?
Does a soccer coach lecture all day?

No, they just watch people feel pain. Lol


this is solid advice. around here when i was taking lessons ( many moons ago) teachers would often just teach you to play songs you liked and didn't give you the proper tools to understand what was actually being played. seems like it's often still that way now. i drove my teacher nuts at times because i wanted to be able to play guitar not just half ass my way thru a song. in the end it was better for the both of us. when i did finally break down ans say ok lets work on a song (Megadeth's Wake Up Dead) he ended up playing it in his band because it was a ton of work for him . playing songs is great but understanding them on the guitar is even better. nothing sadder than a guy that can play some complicated piece they practiced for a zillion hours but can't play a simple blues lick they made up themselves.
#18
How well you're able to play is simply a result of how well you were able to practice. You get out what you put in.
That being said, I'd cut it with the 2 hour routine bullshit. You'll burn yourself out super fast. Don't turn playing the guitar in to a chore.
#19
Quote by maltmn
Tom Hess is a really good online teacher. He might actually help you somewhat reach Bucketheads level. Worked for me at least, now I can shred like a beast.
Not quite as fast but way faster than I ever thought possible for me.


https://youtu.be/LZwA3UFFX_Q?t=3m42s

3:42

And while you're taking guitar lessons from this guy, feel free to take swimming lessons from Stephen Hawking, you'll be in the Olympics in no time.
#20
Quote by CelestialGuitar
https://youtu.be/LZwA3UFFX_Q?t=3m42s

3:42

And while you're taking guitar lessons from this guy, feel free to take swimming lessons from Stephen Hawking, you'll be in the Olympics in no time.


Sadly I'm inclined to agree. I've never actually heard good foodback about Tom Hess that wasn't incredibly bias. Most feedback I see is people saying he's just trying to take your money.

If there was any website that I would suggest you actually pay money for lessons then I'd go for Andy James Guitar Academy, however, I still don't believe it's worth spending any money for online lessons.
Last edited by vayne92 at Dec 2, 2015,
#21
A lot of you guys are saying my routine is lacking, what kind of stuff would you guys suggest I add?

Quote by vayne92
How well you're able to play is simply a result of how well you were able to practice. You get out what you put in.
That being said, I'd cut it with the 2 hour routine bullshit. You'll burn yourself out super fast. Don't turn playing the guitar in to a chore.

What do you suggest I do then?

Quote by CelestialGuitar
https://youtu.be/LZwA3UFFX_Q?t=3m42s

3:42

And while you're taking guitar lessons from this guy, feel free to take swimming lessons from Stephen Hawking, you'll be in the Olympics in no time.

Yeah I didn't exactly love that either.

Quote by vayne92
Sadly I'm inclined to agree. I've never actually heard good foodback about Tom Hess that wasn't incredibly bias. Most feedback I see is people saying he's just trying to take your money.

If there was any website that I would suggest you actually pay money for lessons then I'd go for Andy James Guitar Academy, however, I still don't believe it's worth spending any money for online lessons.


Actually wasn't aware that Andy James offered any lessons, I'll be sure to check it out.


Do you guys think it would be worth it to take a lesson or two from Pepper Brown? He teaches fairly near to me. I've only ever had the one teacher, so I though it might be worthwhile to try another at least once.
Last edited by Cheeseshark at Dec 2, 2015,
#22
Quote by Cheeseshark

Do you guys think it would be worth it to take a lesson or two from Pepper Brown? He teaches fairly near to me. I've only ever had the one teacher, so I though it might be worthwhile to try another at least once.


It's not worth getting "a lesson or two" from anyone - teaching and learning require sustained effort towards long term goals.

It takes a very high level of musicianship to get anything worthwhile with just a couple sessions. In the academic setting they'd call this kind of thing a master class - a "master" of the instrument lectures and demonstrates to a small group of already-proficient musicians. It's no substitute for personalized instruction, or even diligent self-study.

Building technique and other basic musicianship takes a long time especially, and there are a lot of qualified teachers who can do that with in-person lessons. You certainly don't need a big name shred monster to show you basic legato technique.

Once you've got good technique you can get more information from short lessons because the focus is more on ideas and approaches than just how to play the instrument.
Last edited by cdgraves at Dec 2, 2015,
#23
Quote by cdgraves
It's not worth getting "a lesson or two" from anyone - teaching and learning require sustained effort towards long term goals.

It takes a very high level of musicianship to get anything worthwhile with just a couple sessions. In the academic setting they'd call this kind of thing a master class - a "master" of the instrument lectures and demonstrates to a small group of already-proficient musicians. It's no substitute for personalized instruction, or even diligent self-study.

Building technique and other basic musicianship takes a long time especially, and there are a lot of qualified teachers who can do that with in-person lessons. You certainly don't need a big name shred monster to show you basic legato technique.

Once you've got good technique you can get more information from short lessons because the focus is more on ideas and approaches than just how to play the instrument.

I see what you mean. Allow me to re-phrase my question. Do you guys think it would be worthwhile to take lessons from Pepper Brown? I'm assuming they would cost a fair bit more than my current teacher, but I might look into trying it.
#24
Quote by Cheeseshark
I see what you mean. Allow me to re-phrase my question. Do you guys think it would be worthwhile to take lessons from Pepper Brown? I'm assuming they would cost a fair bit more than my current teacher, but I might look into trying it.



I don't know that guy, and I don't know you. But if you're interested in becoming the best you can be, and getting as good as you can get as fast as you can, then definitely the right teacher is the way to go. It will cost you, but otherwise you're flying blind. Forums will give you a thousand different answers from every skill level, and you can't know what's what, until you learn and understand. A good teacher knows what you get from learning what, and they know how to practice, how to get the most out of practice, and they will get to know you, so that they know what you should practice next to get to where you want to be, in the fewest number of steps.

So, definitely worth it, imo. More worth it than any nice gear you could buy.

But I know nothing about that guy, how he teaches, what he knows, nor you, your strengths and weaknesses, where you want to go, etcetera. If I knew all of that, I might have a different opinion.
Last edited by fingrpikingood at Dec 3, 2015,
#25
Quote by maltmn
Tom Hess is a really good online teacher. He might actually help you somewhat reach Bucketheads level. Worked for me at least, now I can shred like a beast.
Not quite as fast but way faster than I ever thought possible for me.


Tom Hess is a fucking scam artist, and by the looks of things, so are you. Pimp that shit somewhere else.
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
#26
Quote by Cheeseshark
A lot of you guys are saying my routine is lacking, what kind of stuff would you guys suggest I add?


What do you suggest I do then?


Yeah I didn't exactly love that either.


Actually wasn't aware that Andy James offered any lessons, I'll be sure to check it out.


Do you guys think it would be worth it to take a lesson or two from Pepper Brown? He teaches fairly near to me. I've only ever had the one teacher, so I though it might be worthwhile to try another at least once.

Here's the thing, you don't just need to practice.

You also need to PLAY.

All the lessons and exercises in the world won't help you progress unless you keep using the stuff you're learning in actual musical situations. So learn songs but actually LEARN them, go the extra mile to make sure you actually nail the song, that you can play it perfectly. They don't even need to be hard songs, go back and revisit some of the stuff you learned early on, you'll be surprised and possibly even a little embarrassed about how much better you can play that stuff.

That's the real key to progress IMO, attention to detail - analysing everything you do, no matter how easy or hard you think it is, and being brutally honest with yourself. Always ask the question "Can I do this better?", because the answer is always "Yes", the problem is we don't like asking ourselves that question because deep down we know it means more work!
Actually called Mark!

Quote by TNfootballfan62
People with a duck for their avatar always give good advice.

...it's a seagull

Quote by Dave_Mc
i wanna see a clip of a recto buying some groceries.


stuffmycatswatchontv.tumblr.com
#27
Quote by steven seagull
Here's the thing, you don't just need to practice.

You also need to PLAY.

All the lessons and exercises in the world won't help you progress unless you keep using the stuff you're learning in actual musical situations. So learn songs but actually LEARN them, go the extra mile to make sure you actually nail the song, that you can play it perfectly. They don't even need to be hard songs, go back and revisit some of the stuff you learned early on, you'll be surprised and possibly even a little embarrassed about how much better you can play that stuff.

That's the real key to progress IMO, attention to detail - analysing everything you do, no matter how easy or hard you think it is, and being brutally honest with yourself. Always ask the question "Can I do this better?", because the answer is always "Yes", the problem is we don't like asking ourselves that question because deep down we know it means more work!



This is actually one of my favourite parts about guitar. The answer is always yes. There is always more to learn, and I can always improve. But that's not really work, to me. It's kind of almost the best part.

Look at rpg style video games, or anything with upgrades and better gear. If you had cheat codes that unlocked everything right away, the game would suddenly become really boring. A big part of the appeal is wanting that next best thing, and then getting it, and then going after more. Guitar is a little bit different because just having the skills and playing with them is also pretty awesome in its own right, but farming and getting that guitar skill tree maxed out, is part of what I like about it. And there's no level cap, so you could go forever. It's pretty awesome.
Last edited by fingrpikingood at Dec 4, 2015,
#28
That Guthrie Govan video is absolutely perfect. That's the real poop. His message is short and to the point.

I also agree with Steven Seagull (great handle) "All the lessons and exercises in the world won't help you progress unless you keep using the stuff you're learning in actual musical situations." Amen to that.
Yes I am guitarded also, nice to meet you.
Last edited by Rickholly74 at Dec 4, 2015,
#29
Cheese buddy i'm going to ad to what the last couple of posters have said. you've been posting here looking for ways to drastically improve on playing stuff tht is beyond your current ability (sometimes greatly). ok wanting to be better is of course the plan BUT you need to set more realistic goals that you can actually attain. we all wanted to be able to play the hot solo of the day when we first started but of course couldn't. otten things tht could be played were ignored because they weren't cool enough etc. believe me being able to actually nail something beats all in the end. you need to have a sense of accomplishment after you practice.

the other thing is to realize that maybe 10% of what you practice / play will actually be good. doesn't sound like much but that's often the sad truth. i've had plenty of days where if i played 2 or 3 licks that i was proud of i'd consider it a good day. of course that is being a bit hard on yourself but that keepsyou focused. in time what you once considered your best day ever will be a meh day where you just weren't focused or whatever. point being that you got better and raised teh bar in a realistic fashion
#30
Lots of people practice subjectively. They don't have a specific goal in mind, they just think that mindlessly practicing the same licks and scales will gradually improve their playing.

Practicing with a objective is crucial to improving playing. Set a goal; learn a tough solo, be able to proficiently play jazz, etc. That kind of practicing is what determines if you are a good player or a great player. Great, you can play a e major scale at 500 bpm, but when you jam with someone, are going to just keep ripping that scale?

My biggest piece of advice is to not get captivated by being better that other people. That's not how guitar playing is supposed to be. There is no true way to measure how good someone is at an instrument. I used to practice until I felt fatigued, because I thought that's how I would improve. I then realized how much of an idiot I was.....I was starting to dread practicing because of that. The whole reason I started playing is because it was fun. When I got thirsty when I was practicing, I would keep playing because I thought that would somehow make me tougher or better. But then I realized that I was unnecessarily stressing my self. Who cares! I want to live my life in comfort. Anyways, don't practice because you have to, practice because you want to.

Sorry this was more of a philosophical rant than practicing advice....oh well!

Take care
#31
Quote by Cheeseshark
I see what you mean. Allow me to re-phrase my question. Do you guys think it would be worthwhile to take lessons from Pepper Brown? I'm assuming they would cost a fair bit more than my current teacher, but I might look into trying it.



I would say it's definitely not necessary, and probably and not worth it.

If you're in the Los Angeles area you really have your choice of musical instructors. There are probably thousands of people who play and teach guitar professionally in your area, and can teach you the same stuff that you'd learn from a pseudo-celebrity Berklee alum.

And remember that nobody is going to teach you how to shred. They're going to teach the universal practices that make good technique. Once you have that, most of playing fast is just doing it, and it stops being a challenge in itself. Anyone with a degree in guitar should have superb technique, so the determining factor is really just the teacher's experience and familiarity with the style of music you want to play.
#32
Sorry I don't visit these forums daily but I did want to give you my thoughts based on the replies.

I agree that knowing what you want is important.

Since you said you want to be able to play the songs you like, that is similar to what I wanted so here is how I did things.

I really wanted to learn the song Calm by Hizaki Grace Project.

So I listened to it in the car, during my workouts, before I played guitar, while I studied. Everything. I had that song so down in my head I knew what was coming before it happened.

While doing that I would play as much of the song as I could, at the time it wasn't a whole lot. So when I got to a point I couldn't play something I had two choices, is this technique or speed? If it was speed the solution is too slow it down and play it accurately and with as much thought as possible until I could play it to speed. If it was technique, I looked up video lessons written lessons and even at one point hired a teach for a month to help we get the technique down.

By the end of all this I was very happy with myself. It was hard work and frustrating (ohhh so frustrating) at times but two MAJOR things came out of this. 1. I could play the song (wooo) but 2. And probably more important I learned the techniques from the song which I could now apply in other songs I wanted to learn. Speeding up the learning process for those songs as well.

I could spend 2 hours practicing scales and techniques but if they aren't the right techniques and scales for this song all I am doing is bottle necking my goal. I would rather spend 2 hours learning the song I wanted than 30 hours learning techniques until I happened across the right set to THEN learn the song.

The only people who really need to practice techniques for hours a day are those who want to teach intermediate to advanced level guitar and those who are making a career out of guitar. Everyone else benefits far more (IMO!!!) from just working at the song they are writing/playing.
#33
Sorry for the late responses. I got my ps4 fixed and bought the Witcher 3 yesterday so I've been pretty occupied with that.

Quote by fingrpikingood
I don't know that guy, and I don't know you. But if you're interested in becoming the best you can be, and getting as good as you can get as fast as you can, then definitely the right teacher is the way to go. It will cost you, but otherwise you're flying blind. Forums will give you a thousand different answers from every skill level, and you can't know what's what, until you learn and understand. A good teacher knows what you get from learning what, and they know how to practice, how to get the most out of practice, and they will get to know you, so that they know what you should practice next to get to where you want to be, in the fewest number of steps.

So, definitely worth it, imo. More worth it than any nice gear you could buy.

But I know nothing about that guy, how he teaches, what he knows, nor you, your strengths and weaknesses, where you want to go, etcetera. If I knew all of that, I might have a different opinion.

Yeah, I sett what you mean. I looked into it an his lessons are barely more expensive than my current ones, so it looks like I'll be trying a new teacher.

Quote by steven seagull
Here's the thing, you don't just need to practice.

You also need to PLAY.

All the lessons and exercises in the world won't help you progress unless you keep using the stuff you're learning in actual musical situations. So learn songs but actually LEARN them, go the extra mile to make sure you actually nail the song, that you can play it perfectly. They don't even need to be hard songs, go back and revisit some of the stuff you learned early on, you'll be surprised and possibly even a little embarrassed about how much better you can play that stuff.

That's the real key to progress IMO, attention to detail - analysing everything you do, no matter how easy or hard you think it is, and being brutally honest with yourself. Always ask the question "Can I do this better?", because the answer is always "Yes", the problem is we don't like asking ourselves that question because deep down we know it means more work!

I can think of a few songs that I, in retrospect, played like shit. Looks like I've got some stuff to work on. Thanks for that and the other advice you gave.

Quote by fingrpikingood
This is actually one of my favourite parts about guitar. The answer is always yes. There is always more to learn, and I can always improve. But that's not really work, to me. It's kind of almost the best part.

Look at rpg style video games, or anything with upgrades and better gear. If you had cheat codes that unlocked everything right away, the game would suddenly become really boring. A big part of the appeal is wanting that next best thing, and then getting it, and then going after more. Guitar is a little bit different because just having the skills and playing with them is also pretty awesome in its own right, but farming and getting that guitar skill tree maxed out, is part of what I like about it. And there's no level cap, so you could go forever. It's pretty awesome.

This is a really good analogy dude. I see what you mean, building the stats and all that. Thanks.

Quote by monwobobbo
Cheese buddy i'm going to ad to what the last couple of posters have said. you've been posting here looking for ways to drastically improve on playing stuff tht is beyond your current ability (sometimes greatly). ok wanting to be better is of course the plan BUT you need to set more realistic goals that you can actually attain. we all wanted to be able to play the hot solo of the day when we first started but of course couldn't. otten things tht could be played were ignored because they weren't cool enough etc. believe me being able to actually nail something beats all in the end. you need to have a sense of accomplishment after you practice.

the other thing is to realize that maybe 10% of what you practice / play will actually be good. doesn't sound like much but that's often the sad truth. i've had plenty of days where if i played 2 or 3 licks that i was proud of i'd consider it a good day. of course that is being a bit hard on yourself but that keepsyou focused. in time what you once considered your best day ever will be a meh day where you just weren't focused or whatever. point being that you got better and raised teh bar in a realistic fashion

Yeah, I've kinda noticed that I often set my sights way too high to end in anything but frustration. Thanks.

Quote by evan_m
Lots of people practice subjectively. They don't have a specific goal in mind, they just think that mindlessly practicing the same licks and scales will gradually improve their playing.

Practicing with a objective is crucial to improving playing. Set a goal; learn a tough solo, be able to proficiently play jazz, etc. That kind of practicing is what determines if you are a good player or a great player. Great, you can play a e major scale at 500 bpm, but when you jam with someone, are going to just keep ripping that scale?

My biggest piece of advice is to not get captivated by being better that other people. That's not how guitar playing is supposed to be. There is no true way to measure how good someone is at an instrument. I used to practice until I felt fatigued, because I thought that's how I would improve. I then realized how much of an idiot I was.....I was starting to dread practicing because of that. The whole reason I started playing is because it was fun. When I got thirsty when I was practicing, I would keep playing because I thought that would somehow make me tougher or better. But then I realized that I was unnecessarily stressing my self. Who cares! I want to live my life in comfort. Anyways, don't practice because you have to, practice because you want to.

Sorry this was more of a philosophical rant than practicing advice....oh well!

Take care

This way of thinking does seem like a good way to avoid burning out, especially in comparison to the super intense way you were practicing. But if I only practiced when I really wanted to then nothing would ever get done.
Quote by cdgraves
I would say it's definitely not necessary, and probably and not worth it.

If you're in the Los Angeles area you really have your choice of musical instructors. There are probably thousands of people who play and teach guitar professionally in your area, and can teach you the same stuff that you'd learn from a pseudo-celebrity Berklee alum.

And remember that nobody is going to teach you how to shred. They're going to teach the universal practices that make good technique. Once you have that, most of playing fast is just doing it, and it stops being a challenge in itself. Anyone with a degree in guitar should have superb technique, so the determining factor is really just the teacher's experience and familiarity with the style of music you want to play.


It wouldn't really be much of a hassle for me, his lessons aren't that much more expensive than my current ones. Figure I might as well try another teacher. However my current teacher does definitely like most of the same music as me. And from Peppr's videos it looks like probably doesn't like the Death Metal that makes up a decent portion of my musical library. But it seems like he'll do anything from jazz to Prog metal like Dream Theater.

Quote by Blicer
Sorry I don't visit these forums daily but I did want to give you my thoughts based on the replies.

I agree that knowing what you want is important.

Since you said you want to be able to play the songs you like, that is similar to what I wanted so here is how I did things.

I really wanted to learn the song Calm by Hizaki Grace Project.

So I listened to it in the car, during my workouts, before I played guitar, while I studied. Everything. I had that song so down in my head I knew what was coming before it happened.

While doing that I would play as much of the song as I could, at the time it wasn't a whole lot. So when I got to a point I couldn't play something I had two choices, is this technique or speed? If it was speed the solution is too slow it down and play it accurately and with as much thought as possible until I could play it to speed. If it was technique, I looked up video lessons written lessons and even at one point hired a teach for a month to help we get the technique down.

By the end of all this I was very happy with myself. It was hard work and frustrating (ohhh so frustrating) at times but two MAJOR things came out of this. 1. I could play the song (wooo) but 2. And probably more important I learned the techniques from the song which I could now apply in other songs I wanted to learn. Speeding up the learning process for those songs as well.

I could spend 2 hours practicing scales and techniques but if they aren't the right techniques and scales for this song all I am doing is bottle necking my goal. I would rather spend 2 hours learning the song I wanted than 30 hours learning techniques until I happened across the right set to THEN learn the song.

The only people who really need to practice techniques for hours a day are those who want to teach intermediate to advanced level guitar and those who are making a career out of guitar. Everyone else benefits far more (IMO!!!) from just working at the song they are writing/playing.


That seems like a good way practicing. The only issue is that some(most) of these songs are so way out of my reach that practicing them is futile, and the only way I can think to close the gap is to practice exercises and scales.

Checked out that song and thought it was awesome btw. The only Japanese music I've actually heard was on anime soundtracks so I've never heard of that guy.
Last edited by Cheeseshark at Dec 7, 2015,
#34
Hi, didn't have time to read all the replies so if someone already said this I apologize.

You can't "just" put time on things like scales, sweeping, random speed exercises etc.

You have to practice ALL of the things that you want to be able to do as a musician. If you want to be able to improvise, get some improvising in your schedule. Same goes for song writing, repertoire, theory, ear training and everything else that you would like to be good at.

Hope this helps, good luck!
"In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years."-Abraham Lincoln
#35
It sounds like you can already play at least in a basic way. If you have been playing for some time and have the basics down I think you can learn more about playing, how well you play and what you need to learn by just taking off the training wheels and figuring out a lot of it by yourself. Yes, it takes more time than someone showing you but if you can forget the tabs, the Youtube "How To Play...." videos and get down to listening to songs and figuring them out yourself, you will develop your ear training and put your current knowledge to the test. You'll find out very quickly whether you need another teacher and if so what kind of teacher.

Take a moment to figure out what you can do and what you can't do and work on doing those things you can't do. If you can't listen to a song and figure it out yourself or struggle with that then that's something you need to do a lot more on. Work on taking some simple songs and working out the chords, inversions etc. You don't need a teacher for that, you need to listen more and work on figuring it out by yourself. If you can learn to do that you will soon be able to play better and you will have more confidence in your own ability. You will also know what it is you need additional help with instead of just reaching out to series of random teachers who may not be taking you where you want to go.
Yes I am guitarded also, nice to meet you.
Last edited by Rickholly74 at Dec 8, 2015,
#36
Quote by Saintp83
Hi, didn't have time to read all the replies so if someone already said this I apologize.

You can't "just" put time on things like scales, sweeping, random speed exercises etc.

You have to practice ALL of the things that you want to be able to do as a musician. If you want to be able to improvise, get some improvising in your schedule. Same goes for song writing, repertoire, theory, ear training and everything else that you would like to be good at.

Hope this helps, good luck!

Yeah, improvisation is something I've been putting off for way too long. Thanks dude.

Quote by Rickholly74
It sounds like you can already play at least in a basic way. If you have been playing for some time and have the basics down I think you can learn more about playing, how well you play and what you need to learn by just taking off the training wheels and figuring out a lot of it by yourself. Yes, it takes more time than someone showing you but if you can forget the tabs, the Youtube "How To Play...." videos and get down to listening to songs and figuring them out yourself, you will develop your ear training and put your current knowledge to the test. You'll find out very quickly whether you need another teacher and if so what kind of teacher.

Take a moment to figure out what you can do and what you can't do and work on doing those things you can't do. If you can't listen to a song and figure it out yourself or struggle with that then that's something you need to do a lot more on. Work on taking some simple songs and working out the chords, inversions etc. You don't need a teacher for that, you need to listen more and work on figuring it out by yourself. If you can learn to do that you will soon be able to play better and you will have more confidence in your own ability. You will also know what it is you need additional help with instead of just reaching out to series of random teachers who may not be taking you where you want to go.

I think I'll definitely try to work out some songs by ear. How does one go about doing that though? Do I just have to play each note until I find the right one and go from there? Either way thanks for the advice!

Vayne said before that trying to practice 2 hours a day would burn me out. Have you guys found this to be the case? And if so, how do I avoid that?
Last edited by Cheeseshark at Dec 18, 2015,
#37
Quote by Cheeseshark
Yeah, improvisation is something I've been putting off for way too long. Thanks dude.


I think I'll definitely try to work out some songs by ear. How does one go about doing that though? Do I just have to play each note until I find the right one and go from there? Either way thanks for the advice!

Vayne said before that trying to practice 2 hours a day would burn me out. Have you guys found this to be the case? And if so, how do I avoid that?


cheese whatever way you have to do it to find the proper chords or notes. with ear training it's about getting your ear to really hear what is going and then find it on the guitar. i'd highly suggest starting with a very simple song and making sure you have a tab for it. don't peek at the tab but rather work the song out by ear and once you think you have it down compare what you came up with to the tab. this will tell you where you are. don't be disappointed if you don't have it all perfect but see how close you come. keep trying until you get it mostly right then move on to harder songs. DON'T try to start or move up to complicated songs until you get good at this. at first this will take some time so be aware it's not an instant gratification thing. after a while you'll start hearing things and just know what they are. i was dicking around the other day and heard Deep Purple's song Space Trucking took about 30 seconds to figure out the main riff and have it down. never played it before
#39
Ah glad you liked that song

A lot of songs will seem impossible but the hardest part is starting! Your first difficult solo is going to feel a lot like your first barre chord and its going to feel a lot like your first time fretting a note and holding a pick. Sometimes you just have to dive right in. Not saying you need to learn the hardest song you can find just one you think you would like working at for a good while without getting sick of it.

Also There is a lot of people jumping down certain teachers throats here for being trash such as tom hess. You don't have to like someones guitar playing to learn from them, even if its what not to do. I actually hate most of tom's music but he is really a good teacher, DON'T BUY HIS LESSONS just watch his free stuff on youtube. There is so much information available you can go very far without ever dropping a dime. A couple other youtube teachers I've liked:

Pebberbrown: horrible video quality terrible sound but the information is gold, although he pushes the "you must practice 8 hours a day or you will be shit" mentality a lot which is terrible I think.

Corey Hunter: Shows that speed isn't everything. Teaches some really beautiful stuff, through the most monotone voice in the world. Poor guy sounds downright depressed.

Tom Hess: Will teach you to look at things from a different perspective in regards to technical skill. Maybe not the most musically inclined but he will help you nail the tools to expression.

Brendon Small: he put out a short set of video lessons on metal guitar that he uses, not super indepth but its a good place to get a structure to the order of techniques you may wish to learn.

old 80's videos: paul gilbers especially, ever wanted to learn some shredding techniques with a back drop of someone cooking food? https://youtu.be/IQxzdbFVnLI?t=13m48s genius and beautiful. can be discouraging if you try to keep up with his 'lets play slow' speeds [skip to 13:48 to see some food cooking]

Don't write someone off just because someone else says they are garbage, I think its worth the 5 minutes of your time to form your own opinions.
Last edited by Blicer at Dec 19, 2015,
#40
Quote by monwobobbo
cheese whatever way you have to do it to find the proper chords or notes. with ear training it's about getting your ear to really hear what is going and then find it on the guitar. i'd highly suggest starting with a very simple song and making sure you have a tab for it. don't peek at the tab but rather work the song out by ear and once you think you have it down compare what you came up with to the tab. this will tell you where you are. don't be disappointed if you don't have it all perfect but see how close you come. keep trying until you get it mostly right then move on to harder songs. DON'T try to start or move up to complicated songs until you get good at this. at first this will take some time so be aware it's not an instant gratification thing. after a while you'll start hearing things and just know what they are. i was dicking around the other day and heard Deep Purple's song Space Trucking took about 30 seconds to figure out the main riff and have it down. never played it before

Alright, I'll work at this. Thanks.

Quote by Blicer
Ah glad you liked that song

A lot of songs will seem impossible but the hardest part is starting! Your first difficult solo is going to feel a lot like your first barre chord and its going to feel a lot like your first time fretting a note and holding a pick. Sometimes you just have to dive right in. Not saying you need to learn the hardest song you can find just one you think you would like working at for a good while without getting sick of it.

Also There is a lot of people jumping down certain teachers throats here for being trash such as tom hess. You don't have to like someones guitar playing to learn from them, even if its what not to do. I actually hate most of tom's music but he is really a good teacher, DON'T BUY HIS LESSONS just watch his free stuff on youtube. There is so much information available you can go very far without ever dropping a dime. A couple other youtube teachers I've liked:

Pebberbrown: horrible video quality terrible sound but the information is gold, although he pushes the "you must practice 8 hours a day or you will be shit" mentality a lot which is terrible I think.

Corey Hunter: Shows that speed isn't everything. Teaches some really beautiful stuff, through the most monotone voice in the world. Poor guy sounds downright depressed.

Tom Hess: Will teach you to look at things from a different perspective in regards to technical skill. Maybe not the most musically inclined but he will help you nail the tools to expression.

Brendon Small: he put out a short set of video lessons on metal guitar that he uses, not super indepth but its a good place to get a structure to the order of techniques you may wish to learn.

old 80's videos: paul gilbers especially, ever wanted to learn some shredding techniques with a back drop of someone cooking food? https://youtu.be/IQxzdbFVnLI?t=13m48s genius and beautiful. can be discouraging if you try to keep up with his 'lets play slow' speeds [skip to 13:48 to see some food cooking]

Don't write someone off just because someone else says they are garbage, I think its worth the 5 minutes of your time to form your own opinions.

So basically I wanna choose something hard, but not Dream Theater difficult to work at? I might just try Master Of Puppets in that case.

And based on what you said I just might check out some of Tom Hess's videos then. I hadn't heard of Corey Hunter until now, I'll be sure to check him out. And of course I expect Paul Gilbert's video will be amazing, I had no idea he used to have long hair. Thanks for all the tips and recommendations.

I have another question. One guy mentioned before that I would probably want to to work my way into practicing two hours a day. Does this refer to physical endurance or attention span? Does it become easier to practice longer periods the longer you do it? Thanks again
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