#1
Hi, I'm John. I'm fairly new to the forums around here, and, well, I have some questions about the structure and flow of music.

My problem really is... No matter what, music doesn't flow so well for me. Whether I'm playing with my bandmates, or just recording and mixing tracks solo... It all sounds horrible. And, I have no idea why. I've tried a couple different things, alternate tunings for seperate song part (Rhythym, Lead, etc.) different effects for different tracks, and just... It all falls apart and sounds like mushed together crap. It really feels like I'm in this 1,000-foot deep rut at the moment. I'm a quick learner, and I picked up the axe faster than most people (So various guitar instructors tell me), and I'm plenty creative, just... I don't know how to apply my creativity effectively. Any help would be appreciate.

Thanks in advance.
#2
when you say flow, do you mean you're having trouble keeping or finding a rhythm for a song, or you cannot creatively solo... a bit of elaboration would help
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#3
How's your theory knowledge?
Actually called Mark!

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#4
I'm fine for now on soloing... But, I am talking about rhythym for songs. And, at the same time, I'm inquiring how to keep the different tracks, such as Rhythym and Lead guitar, from overlapping. Both of these are major problems I have when writing music.

EDIT: My theory knowledge is really weak. I realize that it could help me a great deal, and I've been trying to get the nack of it, but its still very new and very... Confusing.
#5
That'll be where the problem lies then - imagine a writer who has all these cool ideas in his head, but only knows enough vocabulary to write Dick and Jane books...it's the same thing. If you're theory knowledge is lacking it's so much harder to turn your ideas into music.

I highly recommend reading the Crusade articles - here's the first one

http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/columns/general_music/the_crusade_part_i.html
Actually called Mark!

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

...it's a seagull

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i wanna see a clip of a recto buying some groceries.


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#6
Another thing is to do with frequency range and how you're EQing things. In a band environment it's often best to give each instrument it's own area of sounds to play in. Like if your drummer tunes their set to sound like John Bonham's, an your bassist uses thick but punchy bass like say, Geddy Lee, you're not going to want a guitar sound like James Hetfield unless you want the guitar and bass to fight.

Led Zeppelin is probably the best example of this on a band scale... Bonham's drum sound is pretty massive, particularly for its time, and John Paul Jone's bass tone also sounds pretty beastly; Jimmy Page's guitar, even when he layers on a good half dozen tracks of it, is always thin and trebly. It gives the other instruments their own space and it really makes the gutiar stand out too... For lead guitar this tends to make things a bit thin, but for rhythm it's a good option...

Basically I would recommend upping the treble and mids, while removing some of the lows on your rhythm tracks, and then thicking the leads: less treble, more bass... because the lead should be playing a / the melody (rather than chugging along on the beat / rhythm) it won't interupt the other instruments but it also won't conflict with the trebly rhythm tone.

Unless of course you're playing really heavy metal? You didn't mention what sound you're actually after...
#7
Well... I like Heavy Metal, but... Not hardcore, like Behemoth. No offense to anyone, but I just don't see the greatness in that. In my opinion, Behemoth = Guitar wanking. Anyway, my goal as sound would probably be Heavy Metal, just, a little more artistic and less '100 barre chords per minute-ish'. Also, thanks alot to the guys giving tips about adjusting the amps. I don't have a good amp at the moment. I'm currently using a Fender 10-watt amp from the 60's. The only adjustments are Contour and Volume. So, I'm pretty limited on gear for now. Hoping to get a better amp soon. Suggestions on amps would be nice too. Thanks.
#8
It's not so much EQ'ing the amps as layering your composition. For example, if you have a riff on the low E string and a solo that's down there as well, you'll lose clarity and everything will end up mush and muddy. Therefore it would be good to put the solo up and octave (or even two or three), in order for the mix to stay balanced.

A good way to write a piece of music:

1. Come up with a guitar riff (as you're a guitarist, but it should really be "come up with a riff on whatever instrument you play)
2. Make a bass line (root notes/octaves? <just an easy start point)
3. Drums (Fast [e.g 16th beats] pr slow [Quarter beats] depending on the style you want to go for)
4. Play it all back in your head (or on guitar pro, that's really useful for composition). What is bad? what could make it more interesting?
5. Improve it with your new ideas
6. Repeat steps 1 to 6 as many times as you want.

Also, make sure your ideas are in the same key and time signature.
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