#1
well, my guitar playing frustrates me to the max. i never get the sounds that i want when i improv/jam. i've been playing for almost a year and a half now and i expect myself to be better then i am. i practice about 1-5 hours a day depending on how i feel. i think that i should have something to show for my work and i don't think i do have much to show. most of you have probobly seen tons of these threads but mines different, i've taken the time to upload a 9 minute improv jam of mine.

click here and then click "listen to...." button on the middle left.

at the beginning i was using my wah pedal but then i stopped using it later. some parts sound like im tapping badly but they arent tap attempts, more of a repeat riff attempt. my playing frustrates me so much every day. i've watched melodic control like a thousand times and i try to get my playing melodic but it never sounds that way! to me it sounds very repetitive and unmelodic.

as far as gear goes, i'm using a jackson dinky dkmg. emg hz pickups, running through an ibanez weeping demon pedal, running to a crate 15w pratice amp.







my goals for guitar playing are to master shred style solos, blues-rock style solos, acoustic rock, and classic rock whilst righting my own songs and learning theory.

i ask you to critique me 100% honestly. don't be afraid to tell me anything (just say it nicely please), recomend things to practice, recomend gear changes, etc... just overall help me out. as i said, my playing frustrates me so much. i have little to show for practicing hours a day for about a year and a half and i'd really like to change that.
Last edited by madshatter at Jul 31, 2008,
#2
the first like 15 seconds were cool and i was like **** this is badass...after that it was honestly complete ****. boring and repetitive.
#4
Don`t change gear, be good before your guitar is good
Play :
Pearl Jam - Alive, then (Doesn`t matter you can play it already)
Sweet Child o` Mine, then
Stairway to Heaven, then
Master of Puppets, Then
Eruption/Canon Rock.
Or another order, these songs are good for variaty and help you in are ways.

But it`s like you have sped it up. And learn to use your wah better, or buy another, or sell it.

And:

PLAY WITH FEELING! It`s like a machine plays it.
(You said be honest so I am, just trying to help you)

Edit: Learn to use your wah better, or buy another, or sell it.
#5
You move about too much. Try focusing on like 3 or 4 notes in the scale at a time when you improv, soon you'll discover good patterns and be able to use them in more complex playing.

Edit: Calm down with the Wah. I think you've got the range too wide or you're being too bipolar with it.
The UG Awards exist only to instill me with existential doubt.


For me, the 60's ended that day in 1978...

Willies. Fuck the lick and fuck you too.
Last edited by TheBurningFish at Jul 31, 2008,
#6
it just sounded kind of sloppy, like you were almost guessing about what notes to play, instead of knowing what would sound good. also, it sounds like you were rushing yourself a bit. focus on playing a bit cleaner
Quote by Eminored
Hentai. It's a completely different world that will rip your eye-sockets and and skull-screw you with its tentacles.
#7
again, thanks for the honest comments. greatly appreciated.

*goes off to look up the pearljam song*
#8
I think you need to hold back, and practice some slower, blues-style improvisations. Also try playing with a backing track (assuming you didn't when you recorded your audio file). You could for example create simple blues chords in guitar pro and have them played repeatedly, then you can jam over that. Also take some time to study some improvisations, try to pay attention to timing and rhythm. These things are essential if you want to learn to improvise, and they're best learned at a slower pace.
#9
ease back on the pinch harmonics. if thats what I was hearing you were doing more then Zach Wylde, and he starts to annoy me after awhile... but you got some talent just need some work, you sound like a lot of people that have been playing as long as you and just start to improv and solo. just listen to a lot of existing solos and just play some of the lines you like from them and it'll sink in why they're great riffs and use that in your own playing.
#10
Hi,

First part sound really messy, probably due to your wah pedal. Put it away for a while and focus more on the playing itself.
Rest of the track gets a bit boring and random. Study comfortably numb. Repetion of patterns with some slight variations is good to get structure in your solo. Also try making your tone more interesting by using vibrato and string bending instead just picking out notes.
#11
You might want to try jamming with other people, which is fun and inspiring.

Slow things down, your playing was sloppy and cleaning up your playing can make it sound better even if it is repetitive.

I would also say at 1 1/2 years of playing I wouldn't be too focused on being a brilliant improv guy. Learning songs that you like is the best way to start learning good sounding riffs and phrasing.

also:
http://ultimate-guitar.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=40

Post it there next time.
♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪♪
#12
Quote by Cobalt Blue
ease back on the pinch harmonics. if thats what I was hearing you were doing more then Zach Wylde, and he starts to annoy me after awhile... but you got some talent just need some work, you sound like a lot of people that have been playing as long as you and just start to improv and solo. just listen to a lot of existing solos and just play some of the lines you like from them and it'll sink in why they're great riffs and use that in your own playing.


i didn't do any =\ i can never get the pinch harmonics when i want em so i just don't include them in my solo/jams.

and as for the guy above me (dunno how to do 2 quotes). i didn't want to post it there because i didn't feel it was a song that i had worked on for a while. i just sat down really quick and played some stuff to show people what my playing generally sounds like.
#13
Quote by MaXiMuse
Don`t change gear, be good before your guitar is good

Not true, bad gear hinders performance. I still can't play on my epiphone sg, but my fingers just glide across the neck on my strat.
#14
I'm sorry but that was not good, I've heard way worse though. What you should do is get influenced, like practice songs by guitarists you like to get an idea of how they play. Then study the scales they use and make your own sound, but first get a better tone and practice, because I have a feeling your fingers don't move that easily through the neck.


Quote by JELIFISH19
Not true, bad gear hinders performance. I still can't play on my epiphone sg, but my fingers just glide across the neck on my strat.


That's not because the epi is cheap and it sucks, it's just that you're not used to the Gibson necks and you're more comfortable with strat necks.

I mainly play a Jackson Warrior which is an awesome guitar, but once I tried a s
Schecter Hellraiser, which is also truly good, I thought it was completely different.
#16
Quote by MaXiMuse
Be good before your guitar is good .



Quote by JELIFISH19
Not true, bad gear hinders performance. I still can't play on my epiphone sg, but my fingers just glide across the neck on my strat.


True, but there was another thread 5 min. ago with a guy that played for six months and had like 8 cabinets. But I think it`s a waste if you play 1 1/2 year and buy a American Strat, your guitar should improve with you I think.
#17
i'm looking into getting a teacher atm btw. he/she will probobly be able to help me more as well.
#18
All you need to do is play more. It will come with time. Every one gets frusterated with things like this at some point.

A cool thing to do to help with phrasing is to sing your lines. Dont sing what you are playing but what you want to play. that way your playing becomes melodic and translates the way you want to sound.

Another thing to help with melodic Ideas is to limit your self to what notes you can play. Right now you are playing nothing but pentationic scales up and down as fast as you can. Next time you sit down to play have a song ready (Cream-Crossroads orZeppelins-You Shook Me are good choices. Both are in A) and instead of just moving up and down the scale limit your self to four notes. I would reccomend the 5th and 7th frets on the D sting and the 5th and 7th frets on the G sting. These are the only four notes you can play. Soon you will find that playing as fast as you can will sound boring. Slow it down and concentrate on what you want it to sound like. Hold notes for entire bars. Vary your rythems. Use vibrato, bend, and slide into notes but only hold those four notes. Some of the most memorable parts of solos use only 2 or 3 notes. Remember that its not how many notes you play but how you use them.

You should also concentrate on technique. Right now you are very sloppy. Look up some excercises to improve this.
Sig What?
#19
Don't think practicing for 5 hours a day will make you a great player. It's what you do during that time that will make you better. Quality over quantity.

And although I agree with whoever said that your gear should evolve along with your guitar playing, playing out of a cheap 15w crate amp isn't that inspiring. Upgrade to a nice Solid State or even a nice tube practice amp. Nothing too pricey, but something that will make you want to play.
Dorkus.
#20
sounds to me like you need to work on your left hand. the notes aren't very fluid and it sometimes seems as if you're trying to pick notes you haven't fretted yet.

play to a low bpm steady backing track - steal some licks from gary moore, slash and srv etc and work them into your playing, while adding your own flair.

practice. practice. practice more.
#21
Quote by Shortcut
Don't think practicing for 5 hours a day will make you a great player. It's what you do during that time that will make you better. Quality over quantity.

And although I agree with whoever said that your gear should evolve along with your guitar playing, playing out of a cheap 15w crate amp isn't that inspiring. Upgrade to a nice Solid State or even a nice tube practice amp. Nothing too pricey, but something that will make you want to play.


mind linking me to an amp on musiciansfriend/what ever? i don't mean to be lazy but when people suggest something like this, i go look it up, there are like 5-10 ones very similar to it and i don't know which one they are talking about. i do have some money i could spend on a new amp but it would suck uber balls if i went, spent the money only to find out that i should have gotten a different one.
#22
ok one thing i've been told by a ggereat musician i know, even if you use effets pedals it wont improve your playing, learn to play then use effects to COMPLIMENT you playing, not to hide your mistakes.

my tip.........play clean or at least just a little distortion, until you can produce something decent!
#23
Quote by fallingforever
it just sounded kind of sloppy, like you were almost guessing about what notes to play, instead of knowing what would sound good. also, it sounds like you were rushing yourself a bit. focus on playing a bit cleaner


agreed ... i thought the same thing as i listened, that "he doesn't know where he's going" ... even when guys are "improvising", they are working on themes and structures that they know very very well ... there is very very little true improv in this world ...

so ... know where you're going before you start going ... why don't you do another recording of a song you know instead of just trying to fiddle around and get a theme going ... use someone else's theme already ... maybe throw in a little extra on the solo ... work from there ...

as far as your tone, i think more bass and a bit of mid ... might thicken it up a bit ... unless you're not looking for that
take care,
cormac

"The sea was red and the sky was grey
"Wondered how tomorrow could ever follow today"
-- zep
#24
Relax. You sound tense. You are playing things too advanced for you, go back to basics, take it one note at a time and definitely work on your bending and vibrato. Don't rush yourself in your guitar playing.
#25
I don't think you have bad gear.You are experimenting,we all do that I think?There are many times I think I'm in a rut also.There are times when I think I play fast runs (always to similiar in style) to much without "breathing" in between.Bends and sustain will create "breathing".


play to jam tracks,either click tracks or just a CD of a band or song.That will help you develop solo styling.Learn certain solos as close to note for note.Some songs are so signature that you gotta do it note for note but there are others than making it up it is alright too.Listen to some famous bands live and sometimes they do a solo different than the studio version,heard Walk this way live tonight that was like that.


And then start jamming with other people.
#26
It's probably already been said, but go back to the basics. Look up some heavier rock/blues songs on which you can improvise. That's what I do... I'm not trying to change your musical interest, but it all begins with the Blues (that's what I think atleas), and you can then go from there to other styles.

A great song to hear a very simple improvlikethingy is "Brush with the blues" from Jeff Beck. It's just one lick but with a ton of feeling in it.
Another good one is "The Feeling is gone" from B.B. King, it's in B and you can sort of jam with him.

As for all the comment on your gear...well maybe you should get something that inspires you more. Everytime I play on my amp and depending on which guitar I use, I get different kind of ideas.

Also you might want to practise without an amp or on an acoustic. This way, you can hear everything you play more pronounced without an effect muffling it up. And with the acoustic, you build up more strength in your hands.
You can also practice more intricate tapping on acoustic (just look up Michael Hedges, Don Ross, Preston Reed on YouTube).


Grtz,

Mesa.
#27
First of all, u need to understand how to set a phrase to create a fluid mood. I noticed you're like hitting random scales from a scale book. try to feel what you're trying to express. There are plenty of unnecessary notes in the attempt. Carefully culture your sound/tone. Honestly, the sound is dull. We have experts here who can also suggest what amp works best (if not, good) w/ your Jackson. Also try practicing w/ a back track, as if you're in a band. This will further help you figure out what necessary notes that are to be played.

Enjoy and keep on rockin!
#28
Drop the wah and pick up finger picking!!!
i think it would help you coordinate ur hands as it does sound as if you pick some notes before you even fret them. So if you can fingerpick well you will probably start playing betetr imho