Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

Playing guitar by yourself.

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by charlie chitlin, Apr 16, 2018.

  1. Obsessed

    Obsessed Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Nov 21, 2012
    The looper is the answer. Once you record a rhythm loop and then record a lead over your own rhythm loop, you will know instantly what you need to work on in glaring detail and there will be nowhere to hide.
  2. NJ Deadhead

    NJ Deadhead Tele-Meister

    Jan 25, 2017
    Greenville, SC
    I'm actually quite good at playing by myself, probably because that's how I do 99% of my guitar playing. I haven't played in a a full band in over 6 years, my gigs are either solo or with one other guy. The gigs are few and far between now too (like once a month). I'm primarily a couch guitarist right now...too busy raising the kids, working, etc.
    Mad Kiwi likes this.
  3. johnny k

    johnny k Friend of Leo's

    Jan 15, 2011
    You can try a bit of Travis picking / Chet Atkins Picking. It s hard to do, but your sound will be fuller.
    bgmacaw likes this.
  4. tominwa

    tominwa Tele-Meister

    Sep 15, 2016
    Olympia, Wa
    I've always played by myself. I am really good at covering my mistakes. You learn to. Always wanted the experience and envy those that play well with others. I just don't. My heros are good street buskers, not big bands on a big stage. We are all different and the guitar will shape you to who you really are musically in the end. Even if you don't like where it takes you. Closest I ever had to a preforming partner was a mime one summer for the festival circuit. Even that annoyed me.
    moosie, bgmacaw and telemnemonics like this.
  5. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity

    Mar 2, 2010
    Ha ha I had a landlord who mostly listened to Motown ask me why I never play a whole song.
    I tried to suggest he listen to a song he liked and pick out what the guitar was doing.
    He didn't get it, and assumed that I could get the whole band sound out of one guitar.

    Even having started off learning Rev Gary Davis via Jorma, I'm a far cry from a solo performer.
    Singing and playing helps, but I'm not generally singing at home alone.

    Though a little high falsetto in the kitchen is useful when my wife is in a bad mood.

    Lately the solo playing thing is wearing on me because I don't have access to other players like I had for decades living in cities and keeping a rehearsal space.
    This might also change my style somewhat, trying to fill in the emptiness, particularly since in the summer there are neighbors and I get self conscious about playing stuff that makes little or no sense (to non musicians) without other parts.
    Playing more of a rhythm & lead style isn't really my forte, and I feel most at home either with a singer songwriter on rhythm, or with a more jazzy instrumental arrangement.
    But I find I enjoy a more mixed style alone, so blunder ahead with high hopes!
  6. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity

    Mar 2, 2010
    I'm pretty sure everyone is annoyed by mimes!
  7. Jakedog

    Jakedog Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Mar 26, 2003
    The North Coast
    I'm an ensemble player. For electric guitar. I suck by myself. I do fine with an acoustic, because I'm singing the whole time, so I'm not really thinking about it.
    william tele and telemnemonics like this.
  8. Sollipsist

    Sollipsist Tele-Afflicted

    Aug 25, 2016
    The electric guitar is really kind of a mutt instrument. It can solo, it can ensemble, it can accompany... but it's not inherently well-suited for any of it. They had to create whole new forms of music just to make it sound okay :)

    Think of all the famous and semi-famous electric guitar players... but you can count on one hand the players who can consistently draw a crowd playing solo (a crowd of normal people, not us guitar nerds). That's how tough it is to make an unaccompanied electric guitar worth hearing.
    skantzos likes this.
  9. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Jul 18, 2010
    Western Connecticut
    Nothing more annoying than a chatty mime :rolleyes::)
    telemnemonics likes this.
  10. Piggy Stu

    Piggy Stu Friend of Leo's

    Feb 26, 2017
    Depends if you are mad on Blues/have 50 fingers on one hand
  11. fendrguitplayr

    fendrguitplayr Poster Extraordinaire

    Oct 11, 2006
    Greater Boston
    Just keep the volume from peaking while tracking. You can always bump it up later if needed.
  12. Andy B

    Andy B Tele-Afflicted Gold Supporter

    Mar 16, 2003
    My wife & I have played guitar together since we first met. After all these years I have a hard time playing alone. She's much better at it. I find that anymore all I do is accompany her singing and playing.
    telemnemonics likes this.
  13. ndcaster

    ndcaster Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Nov 14, 2013
    is there a question in this? I love playing solo or playing and singing by myself. I'm no great shakes, but a couple tips that helped me like it more were:

    1. imagine a drum groove in your head, and play to that
    2. think more about the bass line
    3. know your vocal range, and play in octaves that complement it
    4. think more like an arranger than a guitarist
    5. people care more about what you're singing about than you as a performer (ditto for the melodies you play)

    good guys to listen to do the solo thing well are Bill Anderson (of NRBQ), Bill Frisell (obviously), John Mayer (say what you will), and good tasteful piano players
    awasson likes this.
  14. tominwa

    tominwa Tele-Meister

    Sep 15, 2016
    Olympia, Wa
    Oh they look all together and fun out in public, but behind the flats what a foul mouthed drunk. Yelling at me for missing some invisible timing and ruining her escape from an invisible box or something, frankly, I never could figure out what she was doing most of the time. I had this one chord melody I worked out to Feelings.....don't judge me, it was the 70s, and she stoped mid set and started screaming at me in full mime gear. Anybody here ever been yelled at by a is disturbing. Then she stopped, put that dumb mime smile back on and started hanging me with an invisible rope and the audience started whooping and yelling "hang him". You try hitting your chords and keep a jazz feel with that going on! Then it got worse as the summer went on and most of the act revolved around insulting my playing or killing me in concert with the audience. Beating me with invisible hammers and big rocks...more. Mimes, nasty little people. They aren't like us. They aren't.

    The money was good though.
    telemnemonics and moosie like this.
  15. 3fngrs

    3fngrs Friend of Leo's

    Oct 30, 2017
    I knew that title was going to get changed. I've seen even milder ones changed to the point that the thread was ruined. Thread titles are a humor free zone, no matter how innocuous.
  16. cattzap

    cattzap Tele-Meister

    Jan 18, 2018
    Carlos, Tx
    Same here. I can never think of anything to do while I'm by myself or at a store browsing.
  17. Sooper8

    Sooper8 Tele-Holic

    May 24, 2011
    UK- Midlands
    This is an interesting thread/topic..and I sympathise and understand to some extent. I really don't sound bad playing alone, it's just that I don't want to be the centre of attention when playing alone.
    But I also have issues playing with others and would rather play alone sometimes too.
    I'm a reluctant showman
  18. BopT

    BopT Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 6, 2011
    The less I think the better when playing
  19. Mjark

    Mjark Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Feb 14, 2011
    Annapolis, MD
    Yes it is a problem, ideally we should able to noodle and outline the changes well enough for people to recognize what we're doing but...

    I'll play this sometimes it gets funny looks in music stores.

  20. Johnson johnson

    Johnson johnson Tele-Holic

    Dec 30, 2016
    I've got a couple Pokey LaFarge records you might like. FWIW, I liked it.
    johnny k, moosie and Mjark like this.
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.