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Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by jwp333, Jul 24, 2015.
+1 after you reach this point then don't over-think it, go into automatic pilot and it just flows
Stop playing and let the bass and drums (and other) carry it for a while...clap/dance/whatever until the moment is right to return. It gives some texture to the song and people think you meant to do it.
Are the guys you play with as focused? I could imagine a lot of frustration for me since the guys i play with are not.
I sometimes get an adrenalin rush while I'm setting up my gear because I'm excited to be about to play. It's not from being nervous or unprepared.
Tele1966' comment on being the music is a refreshing way for me to think of performing, and I will try that at tomorrows gig.
Yes whomever I play music with is absolutely focused.
I wouldn't play music with anyone who wasn't a great musician. That sounds snobbish, but there's a finite amount of time left to me in the world and my choice in terms of music is to spend it with great players.
And the rest of my free time is devoted to trying to make the occasional meme
Yes this is 100% absolutely true. Automatic pilot. When you're on auto pilot it allows subtlety, emotion and every other thing into your playing.
If on the other hand you're locked into a freeze fear mode you'd never experience the joy in each moment of playing live.
10,000 times to learn a solo note for note? I never do that. Too robotic for me. I'll copy a style or feel to be consistent with a song, but I always play it my way, and never the same twice. If I can't put my own signature on a solo, then playing becomes nothing more than tedious repetition for me.
It's fine you do it your own way.
Every even averagely good lead guitarist I've ever known in my life learned famous leads note for note.
Edit to add:
My initial post above addressed the fact every lead guitarist I've ever known learned famous leads note for note in the process of becoming a guitarist but I'm not talking about what I think is the basic rule of a cover band; I think in a cover band you must play iconic riffs note for note but the leads do not need to be note for note. And so perhaps this is what you meant jmclaren.
For me whether or not I play a lead note for note or not depends on how much the song needs to be respected.
For me, there are two different issues: mistakes and nerves. I suppose that more mistakes are made while nerves are present, but they are still very different aspects of performance. When I have a case of the nerves, I sort of tamp down on my playing, keeping it under tight, if uninspired, control. When things are going well and I'm burning, that's when I make mistakes (I'm speaking mainly of soloing). In a way, mistakes can make an exciting moment even more exciting, as the listener now realizes how high the stakes are. To play at the highest creative level, can also mean that technical perfection can seem heartless and cold. There are occasional shredding at home videos that sound blazingly fast, but the player looks like he is in a trance.
Mistakes can also bring the listener closer to you, to root for you. I once heard the premiere of a song for mezzo and piano, written by Ralph Shapey. A hall mark of Shapey's style is the frequent use of wide intervals. The pianist was top-notch, but he fluffed an important note that was maybe a 13th higher than anything else he had been playing. So, it was a very exposed mistake. A bit later, he went for the note and fluffed it again. Soon, here it comes again, but now he rises from the bench, leans over and just hammers it.
In the late 80s, I was writing a piece for synthesized orchestra using a 15-note and 20-note equal tempered scale. I synthesized everything from scratch, using Yamaha's FM synthesis technique. This was overlapping with the emergence of practical instrumental sampling. My piece wound up being lumped together with sampled music in the classical world. Anyway, I had to enter every parameter and every note with loudness, pitch inflection, and other expressive parameters by hand, using a standalone sequencer with a dinky lcd display. At the climactic moment of one section, the "strings" did sort of a stair-stepping, overlapping ascent to the highest note. Listening to it one night, it sounded really cool, and one of the highest notes gave it a real bite. I went to the studio the next night, but now that note seemed out of tune. I scrolled through the lcd screen and saw that the note in question was, in fact, out of tune, due to an entry error on my part. I quickly fixed it, then gave it a lesson. Neutered. Dead. Soul-less. Easy fix: go back to the out of tune version. A lesson I filed away for life.
I used to kick of Folsom Prison Blues so fast that the singer couldn't keep up...I think that is adrenaline! Sometimes I have to gather myself and really think about what I need to do, not too slow, not too fast, check to see if everyone else is ready, and do all that in a few seconds.
I found that with some my previous bands, tempo went nuts and it was a race to play a 3 min sing in 15 sec or less, just have to relax with it create the groove and don't hold on too tight.
OP says thanks to Kingpin. We're rookies learning the ropes, and I was sort of nervous the whole night, and my hands felt a little jittery as this was the biggest show by far that we had played. But the hand coordination didn't really become an issue except for that one moment towards the end of that solo after everything went completely right. I probably was too self-aware at that moment and let it go to my head. I know I was thinking that everyone was watching me. My way of dealing with it between songs - taking an extra swallow of beer. It was back to moderate case of the nerves after that.
And thanks to all other posters. This morning the song "Stagefright" by the Band came to mind. The line about getting caught in the spotlight kind of resonates with me. Anyway, not going to overanalyze this thing or else I'll really be a basket case.
If you can sit for a song or two it helps hit the reset button.