March 26th, 2003, 02:54 PM
I basically just play chords at this point. If the tab tells me to put a capo on X fret I do so, but I am mostly self taught and so I use the G, C, D Em, Am formations the bulk of the time. I have not been able to really get any of the B chords down.
Additioanlly I am not using the lower parts of the fret borad. I have not found a source to guide me around that area yet.
Thoughts would be appreciated!!
March 26th, 2003, 05:12 PM
I like the Arlen Roth book Master's of the Telecasters. I teaches you the appropriate scales to use for blues and country and gives a ton of licks using those scales. Pay attention to where the root note is on each scale, so you can transpose to different keys. Also, learn scales for each Key. There's something called the CAGED system, which is basically the major scale in 5 different positions. Look for a site that explains this better. At the same time, pick solos by your favorite artists and transcribe them, learn them note by note. Eventually you will learn to do your own solos. Ward
March 26th, 2003, 06:28 PM
Good points from Ward. I would add the idea of a good teacher. Your location says that you’re from St. Louis, Mo; you should have no problem at all in finding some really talented players in whatever genre of music you choose to play. I think transcribing should get you to open up your ears more than following tabbed transcriptions and this will eventually lead to playing solo’s, it’s just going to take a lot of practice. Most great players when they first started sounded similar to a great player that preceded them until they put the finishing touches on a style they could call their own. If you don’t have a transcribing tool such as the “amazing slowdowner” or “slowgold” you might consider purchasing one. In the end the theory will help a great deal, but your ears will allow you play something that is meaningful to you.
March 26th, 2003, 10:59 PM
There are so many reference sources and technological advances for learning anymore that it's mind boggling. Just about any avenue you can think of is available...
However, I'd have to say that the most valuable part of my education was the many years I spent ruining my records... Back then the only way was to listen to the record, try to mimic it, pick the stylus up and put it back on the record, try to mimic, ruin your record some more... It seems archaic to approach things in this manner these days, but I couldn't possibly think of a better source of ear training than spending countless hours trying to ape every nuance of your fave players' phrases, trial & error style, and it's much easier these days with CD's. After a while you forget where and who you stole your licks from, and it's all assimilated into the style known as *YOU*.
I went to GIT, did workshops, private lessons, seminars, et al... but the years I spent sitting cross-legged on the floor ruining my records was the most valuable.
March 26th, 2003, 11:51 PM
I second Tim regarding learning off records. I would make a goal of learning ten solos note for note. There are a lot of great tablature books now that can help, especially Wolf Marshall's Signature Licks series. I'd recommend starting with very simple solos. The first solos I ever learned were by George Harrison and Cream-era Clapton. Very melodic and chock full of great ideas, but not so lightning fast or complicated as to be discouraging.
March 27th, 2003, 10:40 AM
These are all excellent and free resources
http://www.harmony-central.com/Guitar/tab.html (lots of tab)
http://shred.guitar.net/ (look for tab at the top)
http://www.wholenote.com/ Many lessons!
March 27th, 2003, 11:15 AM
I don't know if it's the right way or not, but here's how I did it:
One friend of mine drew out the basic "blues box" - the minor pentatonic scale - on a sheet of paper for me. I practiced going up and down that scale until I knew the shape of it pretty well.
Then one night I hooked up with a friend of mine (who was a really good player) and we just played one song for about an hour, going back and forth soloing. He'd play something fantastic, and I'd play some terrible small bits of that scale. Eventually I started a melody in my head - something I wanted to play. I began to work on trying to get those sounds out of the scale I had.
The most important thing to get past is that you have to give yourself over to sucking for a while. Your first solo attempts are going to be AWFUL. But it gets better, it really does. Improvisation is a skill just the same as riding a bike, blowing bubblegum bubbles, or eating with chopsticks - your first attempts won't work but the more you do it, the better you get at it.
Picking stuff up off of records is certainly a good way to do it. But IMHO (and that's all it is - opinion), you're eventually going to have to string together the bits from the records in some type of meaningful way. That's the difference between reproduction and improvisiation.
March 27th, 2003, 01:01 PM
Abe's point leads me to a good idea. Get Band in a Box. You really just need the demo version.That can be your practice buddy. Put in a simple I IV V progression. Like just A D E A over and over. Then learn a lick, play it over and over in that progression until it comes natural. Play scales over and over in that progression until you see how the notes work against the chords. This will be funand allow you to progress fairly quickly. If your into country, my favorite way to learn was to learn Luther Perkins solos of Johnny Cash songs. They're simple, but cool. Ward
March 27th, 2003, 01:21 PM
First, Fred Sokolow's Fretboard Roadmaps (available as book and
video, sold separately) really opened my eyes. He now has a
bunch of "specialty" books (for country, blues, etc.) that build
off the first. I think Fred, along with Arlen Roth, is one of the
best teachers I have found.
Second, I totally agree with Abe. You have to find some other
guitar players to jam with. I was strictly a "Guitar George" until
Mike Rice started hosting jams at his place. And when you jam
with Mike, be prepared to take a solo!
Anyway, my 2 cents!
March 28th, 2003, 01:33 AM
As I am trying to undue the bad habits I picked up, trying to play scales and trying to play them fast, the aforementioned recommendations are very good. I'd also recommend you isten to lots of players (including those on instruments other than guitar - Santana, for instance, listens to John Coltrane for inspiration) to identify a style or technique that interests you. There're plenty of instructional tools out there.
I'd also suggest learning to play melodies. Just about every great guitar solo can be sung.
When you're comfortable, learning arpeggios and chord soloing are also great things to do. Scales can be great, but they can also be very limiting.
April 22nd, 2003, 10:50 PM
1) Good instructor. (Got lucky finding mine on the "other" forum)
2) Band-in-a-box...if you can't get it immediately. Find and/or buy some good jam tracks