#1
Hey!

I'm a self taught guitarist. I've been playing for about 3 years. I was wondering what I should be practicing because I realize I have made a lot of bad habits over time. Please tell me what to practice and how long!

Thanks!
Obama '08
#3
What kind of bad habits are you talking about?

I'm a self taught guitarist too and your making me slightly paranoid that I've done something simular
Un demonio puro que controla su mente
#4
Well, I don't use a pick and when I did take guitar lessons in the summer of '07 my teacher said I should use a pick a lot. And also when I play pinky always touches the pickguard and I just hold it there. I only feel like I have bad habits, no one has ever told me I have.
Obama '08
#5
Quote by fizzypopgurl
Well, I don't use a pick and when I did take guitar lessons in the summer of '07 my teacher said I should use a pick a lot. And also when I play pinky always touches the pickguard and I just hold it there. I only feel like I have bad habits, no one has ever told me I have.


Hah. The pinky-pickguard relationship is called anchoring. There's a lot of debate about it really.

A lot of people frown upon it, but if you look around you'll notice most mega-shredders use it as a technique.

There's no right and wrong. We all have our own little quirks.
#6
Quote by fizzypopgurl
Well, I don't use a pick and when I did take guitar lessons in the summer of '07 my teacher said I should use a pick a lot. And also when I play pinky always touches the pickguard and I just hold it there. I only feel like I have bad habits, no one has ever told me I have.

Wait, it's a BAD thing to play without a pick?! There is absolutely nothing wrong with that! There are many guitarists who play without a pick.

As for the second part, I'm not really sure about that.

The thing I always like to say is that there is no such thing as bad technique, there is only playing a technique badly.
"I've been visiting a psychiatrist for some time now. He plays mind games. He asks things like 'do you masturbate'? and I say 'do you breathe?'."
Ozzy - 1975
#7
theres nothing wrong with playing without a pick, im pretty sure mark knopfler uses his fingers, could be wrong though, and i know dave mustaine uses the anchoring technique so he knows what string he's on
#10
I don't usually play with a pick, but I have recently because I'm using my friends guitar alot (dunno why, I just like the feel of his so much better) and his strings hurt like hell on my fingers.

When using a pick, though, I usually anchor my pinky, yeah, I just find it easier knowing where I am in relation to everywhere else, if that makes sense.

I always tell people to go with what works for them. If you like to anchor your pinky or play with no pick, then by all means do that, don't feel you have to copy what someone else says.

I think it's more important to develop your own way of playing, even if it doesn't help your guitar skills it will help you much more as a person.

Unless you're using your thumb and going over the top of the fretboard to play each fret, like a friend of mine used to do.
#11

Practical (actual playing)
Scales are your next aim for practical work (IMO).

Scales you need to learn:

Pentatonic Scale (there are 5 different "boxes" of the pentatonic scale that mover further up the neck as you use them.)
Major Scale (also in different positions/octaves, like the "boxes" on the pentatonic scale)
Minor Scale (similar to the pentatonic with a few extra notes, again learn the positions/octaves)

Next are chords, and you seem to have made some headway, so that's good.
Chords:

Major Chords [Open (meaning played with some open strings, not barre chords.)]
Minor Chords, also Open
Major Chords [Barred (meaning played with no open strings as transferable patterns, the simpler versions are also known as "power" chords)]
Minor Chords, also Barred

If you make headway with that stuff, then there's this
Advanced Stuff:

Modal Scales: Dorian, Mixolydian etc. (Here's a good site)
7th/9th/13th Chords

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Motor Skills should also be worked on:

Picking: Standard/Alternate/Sweeping/Hybrid
Hammer Ons/Pull Offs (this means a slur if you're musically inclined; if not there are a load of good lessons on this site; just type them in search under lessons.)
Bends
Scratch muting (makes a chcka sound when you mute the strings with your left hand)
Palm muting (listen to metallica; the chug chug sound is caused by palm muting)

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Theory:

Major and Minor chord construction (What makes a chord sound major or minor, 3rds/5ths etc. Refer to lessons)
Key/Time signatures
Basic musical notation
Learn to read tab
Modal construction
Scale construction
Scale inflections ("Blue" notes, modes)


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Sound Engineering (Electric players only):

How to/ what is an EQ
Clean, Distortion and O.D
Pickups
Valve (Tube)/ Solid State/ Hybrid amps

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The stuff in bold is advanced, and so should really be done after the rest of it is good.

I think that's enough to be going along with. Obviously don't try and learn it all at once, you'll overload yourself. Just try learning a bit a week, you'll be fine, and you'll get better with practise.

Good Luck,


Use the search bar please. I'm not about to start typing this again.

Lol, in fact I think i'll just copy and paste this for every answer I can get away with
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