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The Tipping Point - A question for advanced players

Discussion in 'Tab, Tips, Theory and Technique' started by matrix, Sep 25, 2020.

  1. Hey_you

    Hey_you Tele-Holic

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    Focus. Listen. Practice. Know the weak spots in your playing. Pay attention. Don't be mad, get better. When you mentioned tipping point, I understand that as "tip in you favor". Yeah. All the sudden your doing things you struggled with the day before. Without effort. A rise to the next level as I see it. Playing an instrument is a combination for all your skills. I've read a lot on this subject. Reading and playing music, in my opinion, is a total brain workout. It takes all your motor skills, cognizant skills and timing.
    If you love your children Teach them to Play! Musicians brains grow different than non. These children show better skills than their peers. For life! The "connecting" pipeline between left and right lobes also develops larger. An decent coroner will see the difference in a cross section. It's fact. No other Artistic endeavor causes this to occur. I've read studies on musicians playing while Cat Scans were taken. Memory says it was MRI, but I couldn't anyone holding metal inside those! It stood out that the largest problem to overcome was getting the subject in with an instrument in and being able to play. Readings showed activity in the fore brain. An area where "right/wrong" (i can't think of the proper word) works. Like "wrong/right" is muted while being musically creative.

    Brain Structures Differ between Musicians and Non-Musicians https://www.jneurosci.org/content/23/27/9240

    https://www.musicianbrain.com/papers/Schlaug_Music_Child_Brain_NYAS2005.pdf

    There is a woman professor at Berklee. She worked with Prince.Susan Rogers,director of the Berklee Music Perception and Cognition Laboratory. Uber sharp on this subject.

    I stated in another post that I am very analytical. When I want to know something, I research till I'm satisfied.

    Stay focused. Know where you want to go with your skill. Most important, Listen! But be prepared to realize you just don't have what it take. Don't knock yourself out. Enjoyment, first and foremost. GL

    ed: Dang, I fergot to add this gem I've read. "Musicians practice till they get it right. Profesionals practice till they cannot get it wrong"
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2020
  2. lammie200

    lammie200 Friend of Leo's

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    I started to imagine my fingers doing dance moves.
     
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  3. DjimiWrey

    DjimiWrey Tele-Meister

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    thanks for posting that cool little lesson!
     
  4. Aldus Bunbury

    Aldus Bunbury TDPRI Member

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    Back in my misspent youth I somehow came across an instructional record on which Dizzy Gillespie made this great observation: “If you can hear it, you can sing it. If you can sing it, you can play it.”

    At the time I didn’t realize how profound such simple advice could be. The few leaps forward I’ve made in the many intervening years have been rooted in my meager ability to follow that advice.
     
  5. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

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    Growth vs fixed mindset is indeed a huge key to success in life. Challenges and failures are embraced as a goad to get better and work harder instead of thinking, “ I guess I’m just not cut out for this.” Instead of trying to be as good as someone else, you focus on how yourself in a year can kick butt compared to yourself today if you put in the work.
     
  6. rangercaster

    rangercaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    It all just showbiz ...

    Have fun and enjoy ...

    If you make a few dollars, that's fine...

    If not, chicks dig it ...

    No substitute for practice and dedication...
     
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  7. klasaine

    klasaine Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    +1
    I've always said that "Talent" is the ability and the desire to get pleasure from doing the hard work. When you like doing the work, you naturally put in more focused time and you're more efficient within that time. In a nutshell - when you're really into it, you'll practice for 4 hours a day, everyday for months on end kinda not even realizing you're doing it.

    Relating that to the OP; when you come out of one of those intense practice periods there are a lot of things that now 'click'. Tipping points as you say. My advice to you would be ... do not stop now! This is when you can really get some things going on. Motivation means nothing if you can't or don't see a positive result.
    You now actually have a positive result.
    Run with it.
     
  8. Stanford Guitar

    Stanford Guitar Tele-Afflicted

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    Sorry if my diatribes came off a bit preachy. I've thought a lot about this issue!
     
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  9. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    The tipping point seems to be a moving target, sometimes ahead of me and sometimes at my back.
    Depending on my expectations.
    Which keep changing...
     
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  10. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I've heard the no longer really young, complain that they used to have self discipline, but are mystified to have lost it.

    To me I recall youth was more full of the excitement of discovery, which is more zeal than discipline.
    Is learning, the same degree of exciting at 50/60 as it was at 10/20?
    Discipline is maybe pushing hard when the process is not as exciting and feels more like work.

    OTOH kids can be bored by learning, or by learning stuff they have no interest in, but I'm talking about stuff we want to learn and develop skills in.

    So, hard work and how we relate to it will change over the years.
    I can't say I've really identified a tipping point in learning skills but I've certainly found them in applying skills.
    (Though at times a good nights sleep is a tipping point, when the mind tidies up the latest stuff I crammed in)
    Early guitar playing won't include music playing, and once we can play music, that point has passed. Yet a new harder piece of music or music skill might be worked on in the woodshed before we reach a point where we can do that effortlessly in performance.
    There would be another point when we learn to improvise while playing, but I've never really been able to play music without being able to improvise while playing, because that's how I started.

    But if you'd only been playing stuff you learned and repeated, then that might be the tipping point you've found.
    I also learned playing with other players early on and learned in that ensemble environment, which is IMO essential for developing those abilities. So if you only play alone, playing and adapting in ensemble could be a third tipping point.
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2020
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  11. ping-ping-clicka

    ping-ping-clicka Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    there is a tipping point while playing upon occasion when I am playing and te thinking stops an I might say that "I get in the groove" and thinking about what I'm doing stops and there is a flow , and at this time my instrument and my being are " just flowing right along." This is not an everyday common garden variety experience. for me.

    The other kind of tipping point is or a silent one I play and play , nothing just the fun of digging a straight trench or cleaning the tub until it's shining. gratifying, the joy is in the doing.
    starting out, with thumb and forefinger picking and then one day I find myself pick with 3 fingers and my thumb, or picking with a flat pick and realizing that I'm picking with both the pick and my fingers. without realizing it when I'm doing it.
    These example are not the result of practicing , they just sort of happen one day intuitively ? Certainly not from reading and practicing SteveN Grossman's excellent fingerpicking book. Tipping points ,that creep up on me, WHEN I'M NOT LOOKING , ... "HA! GOTCHA' ".
    I think that learning occurs when I am paying attention to what it is that I focusing on and not thinking about the laundry , taking out the garbage, recycling. When I do this I find that at a later time that which was place under the microscope ceases to be an issue after a while and it just becomes something that I can do without thinking.
    Not trying to "get good" at a technique or skill and just focusing on the act and becoming that which I am doing.
    yeah I don't think this is how teaching music is done, generally .....
    "become the ball Flakey Funt, Be the ball, be the basket, focus , focus fuss ,you are the ball you are the basket" said Mister Natural.
    zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz nmr natural.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2020
  12. Toast

    Toast Tele-Afflicted

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    One day it suddenly felt like I was just effortlessly pushing buttons (chords and double stops were like buttons that is) on a noise making stick. To my astonishment, it all sounded great. I even had the stupid thought that it was actually very easy, but I quickly remembered that it took me about ten years to get here. I would describe my tipping point as a fusion of shapes, patterns, distances (physical and musical), high sounds, low sounds, with musical theory becoming like a treasure map and everything just suddenly blending into understanding. I think the major stumbling block for me along the way was that I was always an apartment dweller who didn't want to disturb the neighbors. So I never really let myself cut loose without giving a rip about the neighbors. That nervous tic probably added on 5 years of learning time. I still have a long way to go, but now I just enjoy creating my own songs and exploring different musical avenues through Youtube, theory, and discovering why I love certain guitarists. By the way, I am by no means an advanced player. I'd say I've reached intermediate level though.
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2020
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  13. dlew919

    dlew919 Doctor of Teleocity

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    My breakthrough was realising we play music not work it. I play pretty damned great but i learned to enjoy the practice and the challenge of new. Someone above spoke of the joy of playing. It doesn’t matter how good you are - play for pleasure first. Even when it’s a job.
     
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  14. T Prior

    T Prior Poster Extraordinaire

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    Over the last few years I have actually gone backwards and reviewed some very early lessons and material that I just took for granted. I assumed I knew what I was playing . I assumed wrong. Yes of course I was still playing all the regular stuff, the so called good stuff ,my "amp" was impressed by my solos and choice of notes.

    Here is what I am talking about. I have gone backwards and literally identified what chord shapes, scales and positions I was playing out of on the fretboard. I typically play everything out of 3-basic forms, Mel Bay calls them Form I,II and III. I mix and match.

    Now when I practice , I look at the fretboard and identify which form or chord shape I am playing out of, I SAY IT. as in " AHH--- Form II"

    Sidenote: Back in the corporate world, communications, we were taught that when you meet someone and they tell you their name, you repeat it, YOU SAY IT. Your mental recall of the name is greatly advanced.

    For example if we are playing in "A" at the 2nd fret, that is Form 2, with the associated scales. If we move to the 5th fret, we are now in FORM 1, with the associated scales, if we jump up to the 9th/10 fret area, we are now in Form III with the associated scales. Every Blues player plays in "A" at the 5th fret and moves up to the 9th/10th fret location. But do they know or recognize that they are now in FORM III ? They know its "A" but do they know why ? I mean we are now on the 10th fret Form 1 "D" position. How come I can play in A ? The answer is because the 2nd string 10th fret note is "A" which is part of the Form III "A" chord at the 9th fret .

    Each of the solos I play I now LOOK at the fretboard and identify the formal location, what happens is the fretboard becomes a very familiar road map. Its like there are lights shining pointing the direction. All off a sudden each of the FORM locations become obvious , I no longer have to repeat what I did yesterday or the day before. " why don't I just play it here" ?

    I have always played out of the "3 Form technique" but took it for granted . The light was always on but it was very dim . I turned up the juice.

    So when I am soloing ( pretending to be Clapton ) In "D" at the 7th, 8th and 9th fret area . it works because Form II, "D" chord is the 7th fret. The 4 Chord "G"" is at the 7th fret, Form III, and yeah , we are already in the right place playing the right notes. We are not even changing positions. How did that happen ?

    Sure we probably know this stuff and take it for granted but do we REALLY KNOW it ? Or is it just habit. This is the stuff that turns the light on.
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2020
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  15. Sounds Good

    Sounds Good Tele-Afflicted

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    I think one has to push oneself and take a few chances, at first i draw up time scale for learning but after a while i started to overtake it and that gave more and more confidence.

    I think with alot of things you need to trick the mind all the time otherwise negatives start to form and that the worse thing that can happen, then deferring all the time can take over as well and make matters worse.

    Each day i tried hard stuff for so many minutes at a time also, and gradually built up to longer and longer, then went back to easier stuff for most of my session and then it all was a proccess of gradual improvements.

    Folks say i am ok, and dont play much now but i really enjoy it when i do.

    Anyhow Good Luck!! with the practise.
     
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  16. Cloodie

    Cloodie Tele-Meister

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    Not an advanced player but the tipping point for me that moved me on from being able to play some songs using chords with occasional fills to being able to play lead and even improvise some solos (still badly :D) was coming up with a written practice routine. Half an hour each day really is enough to make a big difference if it's targetted in the right areas.
     
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  17. Engine Swap

    Engine Swap Tele-Afflicted

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    Agree with focus and time on the instrument.

    I'm by no stretch and advanced player, but I've been hacking away since 1984.

    The current situation has allowed me to play everyday and I finally feel like I'm actually playing decent.

    Hoping that I can still physically play when I retire.
     
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  18. tfarny

    tfarny Friend of Leo's

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    Yep, I always hear guys on here negging themselves and their "lack of talent" when it's mostly about perserverance, active study, and time on task. When you read about the great musicians the most consistent thing is that they were obsessed with their instrument, it hardly ever left their side. Lots of guitarists take to sleeping with their guitar and in the middle of the night will just grab it up and play!

    Dweck rather understates the importance of innate talent - which definitely does exist - in her work. But then again, your innate talent isn't something you can do anything about, so from a self improvement / education standpoint it's not very relevant anyhow.
    I was born with relatively poor pitch sense (I was told I was "tone deaf" by an elementary school teacher) but next week I've got another gig where I'm doing all the singing. Lots of work and not giving up are generally always going to be the keys to success.
     
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  19. matrix

    matrix Tele-Meister

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    @ndcaster DING! I think we have a winner! I was thinking along some much more metaphysical lines, but this might be it. In the last year or so I have put a lot of effort in to really learning the fretboard...having all of the notes in instant recognition mode, not just my guide notes for chords along the base strings. And away from the guitar, I replace idle time with mentally drilling chord spellings, so that the notes of say an F# minor chord are as in ready access as a G major.

    Your observation is more prosaic than what I was thinking, but also probably way more accurate!
     
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  20. bluescaster72

    bluescaster72 Tele-Holic

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    Immersing myself in blues taught me how to play lead then when I joined a band I had to break out of that box and learn how to play lead to a wider variety of music Learning the scales and how they connected to one another what a huge tipping point as I was largely a rhythm player for years though I wanted more then anything to become a lead player. I biggest tipping point was going to open jams and playing with other people and having to improvise on the spot . I can do that almost without thinking now other then making sure my fingers go the right places .
     
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