#1
I'm feeling pretty down about this situation with this girl I met the other day. I'll just say I failed plain and simple. I've been in my room all day trying to write some riffs/solos. I'm disappointed and sad about it, but I can't use this emotion to help me write some songs. I'm trying to think of a solo, but nothing is coming to me.

Anyway I can help myself write some songs?

I'm even listening to Steve Vai, Agalloch, and Cynic as well
#2
Try to write lyrics instead. That's what I do. I gave up the guitar and write poetry instead.
sometimes I see us in a cymbal splash or in the sound of a car crash
#3
First thing you need to do is find a USB cable...

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#4
Try to just chill and imagine a melody in your head before transferring it to guitar.
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I immediately clenched my butthole after reading that...
#5
I usually get inspiration for songs by finding a good chord progression and then working from there.
Riffs don't tend to emote as much as a good chord progression, and you can't make an emotional solo without the right chords behind it.
#6
Quote by o_hai_dere
I'm feeling pretty down about this situation with this girl I met the other day. I'll just say I failed plain and simple. I've been in my room all day trying to write some riffs/solos. I'm disappointed and sad about it, but I can't use this emotion to help me write some songs. I'm trying to think of a solo, but nothing is coming to me.

Anyway I can help myself write some songs?

I'm even listening to Steve Vai, Agalloch, and Cynic as well



You can't think of what you are going to write. This has to be entirely subconscious. It is a lot harder to do on your own in your room with a lot of bad vibes. If I were you, I would find a backing track, clear your mind and let your heart do the speaking.

Just put all your barriers down. Don't think about rhythm or melody or harmony or anything, just play whatever comes to mind. Think about what you are feeling and let that guide your fingers.

Wish i could be a little more exact but that is the only way I can think of to describe it.
#7
Quote by Seryaph
You can't think of what you are going to write. This has to be entirely subconscious.

Actually you can. And in some cases, you must.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#8
Quote by JohnnyGenzale
Try to write lyrics instead. That's what I do. I gave up the guitar and write poetry instead.


i agree with that. ima crazy lyrics write, but i cant write songs. and irconly i cant sing but im good at guitar
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#9
Quote by Xiaoxi
Actually you can. And in some cases, you must.



I thought he was talking about pouring his emotions into a solo. Not song-writing as a whole.

And I, for one, have never been able to think about what I am playing and reach that subconscious state where my soul speaks directly through my guitar.

Songwriting is completely different than that though.
#11
Quote by Seryaph

And I, for one, have never been able to think about what I am playing and reach that subconscious state where my soul speaks directly through my guitar.

Thinking about what you're playing helps a lot. When it comes to improvisation, thinking is a must. It's what separates wankers and amateurs from the legends.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#12
Quote by o_hai_dere
I'm feeling pretty down about this situation with this girl I met the other day. I'll just say I failed plain and simple. I've been in my room all day trying to write some riffs/solos. I'm disappointed and sad about it, but I can't use this emotion to help me write some songs. I'm trying to think of a solo, but nothing is coming to me.

Anyway I can help myself write some songs?

I'm even listening to Steve Vai, Agalloch, and Cynic as well



I think it's kind of something you're born with...some people can just sit down and play their instrument with a completely empty mind and the instrument will not only sound good, but it'll reflect exactly how that person is feeling.

If you're not capable of that, write lyrics that match your mood, and then write a riff to match the lyrics. It'll have the same affect.
#13
Give it a break for a bit, I've had similar problems.

Do something to relax and take your mind off of things, then come back and just focus.
Helps me.
#14
Lay down the thickest chugging possible and bree until your lungs are expelled from your throat.
#15
Quote by Xiaoxi
Thinking about what you're playing helps a lot. When it comes to improvisation, thinking is a must. It's what separates wankers and amateurs from the legends.



Ha, well thanks for calling me both an amateur and a wanker, but I disagree with you.

I have found that there is a mental state that you reach in which thinking about what you are playing is no longer necesary. Your hands just know what to play, know what notes resonate with your soul at that particular moment in time. Sometimes the sounds are torn from you and other times they come willingly but no thinking is involved.

At least, that has been my experience.

What kind of style do you play when you play guitar, Xiaoxi?
#16
Quote by Seryaph
You can't think of what you are going to write. This has to be entirely subconscious. It is a lot harder to do on your own in your room with a lot of bad vibes. If I were you, I would find a backing track, clear your mind and let your heart do the speaking.

Just put all your barriers down. Don't think about rhythm or melody or harmony or anything, just play whatever comes to mind. Think about what you are feeling and let that guide your fingers.

Wish i could be a little more exact but that is the only way I can think of to describe it.



+ infinity

Its hard to explain any different way other than saying dont TRY to write a song, just play and it will just happen.
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#17
Stop trying to put your emotions into it and just let it happen naturally.
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#18
Living is easy with eyes closed...
--------------------------

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#19
If you know guitar really well, and i mean REALLY well, then you should know that every type of interval between notes has a different feel, i hope you understand what i'm saying. Also, different notes with the same interval will have a different feel too... this doesn't really make sense so heres an example: If you are in A minor and go from an A to a C, it will have a different feel than if you are in E minor and you go from E to G... same interval, but different notes, and a different feel. It also matters HOW you play, whether you play the notes soft, loud, etc.

Now, when i am writing a solo for a song, i just clear my mind of everything except the feeling i want to transfer from my mind, to my hands, to the guitar and the "theory (i guess?)" of the above paragraph. And eventually it will just flow.

Again, you really have to know your guitar, what each note and interval feels like, how you should play these notes to get that certain feel, and where on the fretboard you should be playing at... I hope this helps for you, cuz it really helps with my soloing.
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#20
i, III, VII, i

and then work on a melody line, it's been done a lot but if you wanna just play something that sounds cool it's fool proof.
#21
Quote by Seryaph
Ha, well thanks for calling me both an amateur and a wanker, but I disagree with you.

I have found that there is a mental state that you reach in which thinking about what you are playing is no longer necesary. Your hands just know what to play, know what notes resonate with your soul at that particular moment in time. Sometimes the sounds are torn from you and other times they come willingly but no thinking is involved.

At least, that has been my experience.

What kind of style do you play when you play guitar, Xiaoxi?

Woops, I didn't mean to call you a wanker. But chances are that you are an amateur (otherwise why would you be here?). So am I. But wankers can be professional players who don't put any thoughts into what they play. It comes out flat and uninteresting.

You're talking about muscle memory, really. You know for a specific section of a progression or musical moment, there are licks instilled into your muscle memory and you can immediately use it and it sounds fitting.

However, when you look at the overall picture, the overall structure of a solo or even the whole tune, there should be thoughts put into development. When improvising, a really good player will keep track of what he has done so far. He'll also mentally plan out the various points of the solo (intro, development, climax, fall, outro). Combined together, the player will utilize a wide variety of musical properties, including dynamics, range, timbre, tempo, and phrasing. He'll also use thinking to develop a motif idea or pattern in his playing because effective repetition is what makes something stick.

I listen to and play jazz and this is undeniable in jazz playing. But it's true for most styles anyway.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#22
Quote by Xiaoxi
Woops, I didn't mean to call you a wanker. But chances are that you are an amateur (otherwise why would you be here?). So am I. But wankers can be professional players who don't put any thoughts into what they play. It comes out flat and uninteresting.

You're talking about muscle memory, really. You know for a specific section of a progression or musical moment, there are licks instilled into your muscle memory and you can immediately use it and it sounds fitting.

However, when you look at the overall picture, the overall structure of a solo or even the whole tune, there should be thoughts put into development. When improvising, a really good player will keep track of what he has done so far. He'll also mentally plan out the various points of the solo (intro, development, climax, fall, outro). Combined together, the player will utilize a wide variety of musical properties, including dynamics, range, timbre, tempo, and phrasing. He'll also use thinking to develop a motif idea or pattern in his playing because effective repetition is what makes something stick.

I listen to and play jazz and this is undeniable in jazz playing. But it's true for most styles anyway.



I understand what you are saying and I have definitely had people tell me that before, but I still disagree with it.

I still consider all of those elements of a good solo that you have listed, but I don't actually consciously think about them whilst I am improvising. I normally let my ear guide me. Well, my ear and that state of mind. And then the dynamics, range, timbre, tempo, and phrasing come naturally. At least to me they do. I don't put a conscious effort into making them occur, they kind of pour out of me. And when it is exactly what my soul intended to say they resonate a certain . . . way. It is hard for me to put into words. But thinking about what I am going to play prevents me from reaching that state.

I do absolutely agree with you that what you said is completely undeniable in jazz playing. But I approach jazz guitar with a complete different mindset than any other music I play.
#23
Quote by Seryaph
I understand what you are saying and I have definitely had people tell me that before, but I still disagree with it.

I still consider all of those elements of a good solo that you have listed, but I don't actually consciously think about them whilst I am improvising. I normally let my ear guide me. Well, my ear and that state of mind. And then the dynamics, range, timbre, tempo, and phrasing come naturally. At least to me they do. I don't put a conscious effort into making them occur, they kind of pour out of me. And when it is exactly what my soul intended to say they resonate a certain . . . way. It is hard for me to put into words. But thinking about what I am going to play prevents me from reaching that state.

I do absolutely agree with you that what you said is completely undeniable in jazz playing. But I approach jazz guitar with a complete different mindset than any other music I play.

Well, don't get me wrong. It's not like your ear and state of mind doesn't play a part in it. It certainly effects what notes you're choosing and the overall contour of your solo. However, again, I think what separates the really good players from the rest of us is their ability to really keep track of what they're doing and tastefully building on it.

I don't think the jazz style has a completely different mindset. I think what I laid out is true for every style of music, and is not only limited to soloing or improvising. Sure, the inherent stylistic nuances may be different, but there's that certain formation and development that most music possess, whether it's intentional or not.

PS: We should meet up sometimes!! So close!

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#24
Arson usually makes me feel better when I'm down.
Life is underrated.


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#25
Quote by Xiaoxi
Well, don't get me wrong. It's not like your ear and state of mind doesn't play a part in it. It certainly effects what notes you're choosing and the overall contour of your solo. However, again, I think what separates the really good players from the rest of us is their ability to really keep track of what they're doing and tastefully building on it.

I don't think the jazz style has a completely different mindset. I think what I laid out is true for every style of music, and is not only limited to soloing or improvising. Sure, the inherent stylistic nuances may be different, but there's that certain formation and development that most music possess, whether it's intentional or not.

PS: We should meet up sometimes!! So close!

listen to this man, he knows what he's talking about (the intro to 'Shades of Grey' is proof enough of that). Putting thought into what you're doing doesn't negate the emotion you emit when you play. On the contrary, it allows you to know what will be the most appropriate at what time, thus making the overall piece better.