11 Things You Can Do Right Now To Become A Better Guitar Player

Discussion in 'Beginner's Q&A Forum' started by wisevijay, May 8, 2004.

  1. wisevijay

    wisevijay newbombayrox


    1. Watch yourself and your hands and fingers in a mirror when you practice. Look for tension and economy of motion. Make sure you are not causing tension by the way you are sitting and holding the guitar.

    2. Redefine the word "mistake" as an unwanted result. This means it has a cause, which you can discover, and change, to produce a different result (what you want). Regard every mistake as a learning opportunity. Find it's cause and plan how to improve it and get a different result.

    3. Get specific about every mistake. Be absolutely clear about exactly what is happening. What note is missing or damaged? What finger was supposed to play it? Where was that finger before it was supposed to play?

    4. Record yourself every day. Listen back and decide the worst thing about your playing, and start thinking of a way to improve it.

    5. Play for other people as much as you can. Be aware of how you play, and how you feel each time you do. Be aware of how you feel physically, any tensions in the body. Be aware of how you feel emotionally. Do you feel fear, anxiety, pleasure? Study yourself each time and you will get to know yourself as a performer, and you will improve.

    6. Pretend each finger is a person and give them a name. Pretend you are that person-finger playing in a band. This will promote intimate awareness of the experience of that finger while playing. The lack of this awareness is the root cause of all technical difficulties in playing. This is called "Following."

    7. Keep "reminders" in front of you as you practice. Whatever you have decided is your weakest area, and is most in need of improvement, decide what to do about it. Write it down, and keep it in front of you, hanging somewhere, or taped somewhere so it is always in your mind when you practice. There is always something!

    8. Every time you move a finger, think about and imagine your next move.

    9. Every time you practice, pay attention to your entire body.

    10. Use a metronome for building technique. For instance, start scales at 60, 4 beats per note. Notice the tensions in the fingers and body at this speed. Continue at 80, 100. Go back to 60 at 2 beats, then 80, 100. Then 60 at one beat, then 80, then 100. Go back to 60 and do eighth notes, then 80, then 100. Finally, do sixteenths, up to your limit.

    Thats what my sir mailed me
    his name is Abharim Jadhav.
  2. jayanth

    jayanth <.: : Call Quits : :.>

    Good Stuff. NEat..

    YOu really need to follow just one of those. THe 10th one..
  3. wisevijay

    wisevijay newbombayrox

    Only follow one of them.........:think: all r good:)
  4. jayanth

    jayanth <.: : Call Quits : :.>

    Why do you have to pay attention to your Body when playing(9th one) What are girlfriends for??
  5. wisevijay

    wisevijay newbombayrox

    Its just 4 admiring ur body,ur muscles.........hehehe:)

    hey Admin all smileys are good but why dont u keep a winking smiley.:rule:
  6. 6String_assasin

    6String_assasin The Painkiller

    i have read it long b4 somewhere. but still nice. i think there b a seperate section for guitar lessons.
  7. jayanth

    jayanth <.: : Call Quits : :.>

    THanks assassin.. We'll consider your suggestion.. There is a winking smiley ;) ; )

    Anyways the lesson have good points. But mostly unrequired.
  8. wisevijay

    wisevijay newbombayrox

    they r good 4 complete beginers.i got this long back when i started learning guitar.not necessary 4 the ones who know guitar well like ME;)
  9. jayanth

    jayanth <.: : Call Quits : :.>

    Yhea.. But you were a beginner once.. But how can you say not required for people who know how to play guitar like me.. Most of the stuff Van Halen or Vai do i cant play..May be you can??
  10. esgallindeion

    esgallindeion Minstrel Knight

    Hmm... frankly, all u need is a good guitar, amp, metronome, strings and determination to practice at least an hr daily for 10 yrs...

    yeah, and good music influences
  11. wisevijay

    wisevijay newbombayrox

    hey theres a diffrence between a complete begineer who is learning to place his fingers on the fret board and i m not a beginer nor i m to the caliber of a pro.and surely you,esgi,lord neo,and many others r better guitarists than me but theres a diffrence between a beginer and above beginer.:beer: :beer:
    get it:rule: :rule:
  12. jayanth

    jayanth <.: : Call Quits : :.>

    "hey theres a diffrence between a complete begineer who is learning to place his fingers on the fret board "

    A person who does not know how to place his fingers on the fretboard does not belong here.. Cause here we cant explain to him those stuff. HE HE.. I call myself a beginner.. I learnt by teaching so i can now maybe probably possibly perhaps call myself Intermediate.. But There is nothing between these two..

    As essi said you just need a guitar and strings on them. Probably a metronome once you learn how to place your fingers on the fretboard ;)
  13. wisevijay

    wisevijay newbombayrox

    u r an intermediate than i m a mediocure. :rule:
  14. prash_rocks

    prash_rocks Over the Hills & Far Away

    returning to this forum after a long time, found the new looks extremely impressive and a fresh change.

    What??? "Mostly Unrequired"??? I say ALL of these ARE REQUIRED to become a good guitar player.

    I know the source of these 10 points, they come from the teacher Jamie Andreas at guitarprinciples.com. I haven't yet read his book but what I gather from his numerous essays and technical tips on the guitar strewn all over the internet's guitar websites, he is an astounding teacher, philosopher, and psychologist apart from being a musician skilled in ALL genres of guitar playing.

    This isn't an endorsement but only a comment on the above quoted reply as per my understanding.

    It is his idea to improve just *anyone's* ability with the guitar, by concentrating not only on the playing itself but on the nervous and motor aspects behind the playing too. That covers all the ground from possessing an intense awareness of the 'right intention' in the brain at the very fundamental psychological level when thinking of what note next to play, leading eventually to the self-awareness of exactly what muscles need to be pulled into action and moved just the right amount in order to play that note with the minimum body and muscle tension. it is in fact a whole series of events that occur in between and he addresses each of those points from where this 'intention' passes in the utmost psychological detail.

    viewed in this way the guitar playing process becomes a sort of meditation with music. and i bet that's the best way to play or listen to music anyway. and with such a kind of self-awareness the playing itself is bound to improve, which is a revolutionary idea for me at least.

    so these points cannot be dismissed to be 'mostly unrequired' or meant only for beginners but for anyone with WHATEVER level of advancement with the instrument who wants to have an intimate experience of an improved guitar playing. the former comment is therefore one made in ignorance about the right implications of those 10 suggestions.
  15. jayanth

    jayanth <.: : Call Quits : :.>

    As a beginner, ass i had was this..

    I had this wooden box which resembles a butterfll(Nearly) Makes a lot of noise when banged against the wall.. and there were six strings 24 frets and cant count how many notes. And started playing Coming Back to Life. Find the note play. I learnt chords next for which i had this little chord chart kind of a thing. Then learnt my scales with my scales chart.. Now tell me How does Body Foucs come into play. While playing all i knew was which plectrum i'm holding(By this i mean which type I had Soft Medium and Hard) and then which string i as playing.. and which fret i'm playing.. I focused on frobably 4 fingers. Then came the age of Metronomes for me when i started playing songs a little fluently. I started banging my foot against a wooden board for a metronome. I bought one eventually.

    I never went on thinking Pinky play 4 15 index plat 4 14 and stuff. I didnt even have a computer to get tabs or anything. It came to my guitar directly from my cds through my ear and fingers. I must be very very frank. Anyone who reads this will give more attention to naming their fingers and which is my next move that actually playing the flow.
  16. jayanth

    jayanth <.: : Call Quits : :.>

    As i said there is nothing between Beginner and Intermediate in Guitaring.. I dont know what a Mediocure is?
  17. prash_rocks

    prash_rocks Over the Hills & Far Away

    hey jayanth

    try hard as i did, i couldn't understand what u were trying to say in the last line.

    anyway, my idea wasn't to challenge ur status as a guitarist or musician which u have set earnestly to defend. if u remember, i never questioned that, and in fact reckon u as one of the best here.

    but that doesn't invalidate the fact that u might still be wrong or yet inaccurate or yet can progress with ur approach to the instrument. and that's all that original post intends to do for anyone "to become a *better* guitar player."

    ur view of things is very simplistic, and i admit i once shared exactly the same view as urs. and i'm sure all who learn to play like me at the beginning think and do exactly as u say... that's natural. but that shouldn't mean that what is natural is necessarily the best thing to do.

    u never went on thinking what a particular finger ought to do and stuff... thats ur problem, thats my problem and thats generally the universal problem. but those who would go about doing that would naturally possess a much better understanding of their physiology and nerves, and only when they know themselves and their parts more intimately would they possess a far greater control over their system. consequently, what might take a 'general' beginner months of intense hard work, practice and not to forget the utter pain in learning such a thing as the barre chords, would be far easily done by one who knows exactly what part of his fingers, hands and arms are obstructing the right formation and fingering of those chords and causing the pain. he will at once pinpoint the problem and soon get over it. can't u see they will tide over this difficulty so much sooner than the rest who are groping in the dark, all the time trying different postures, positions and praying they'd get it right this time? and still of course the harder thing to get it right everytime always remains.

    yet, tell me this frankly, if u somehow did even learn the right way for yourself, can u teach any other person what to do to overcome the pain, except that "practise hard, it will come to you. that's the only way" as u've been advising so many people right here on so many issues? the fact is U CAN'T, cuz u urself don't know what exactly u did to fight that problem, u only somehow found out a very personal and chance solution to the problem once and stick to it all the time. i guess "try hard, that's the only way" is such a basic philosophy which students needn't spend all their money on to learn from a guitar teacher when they are going thru the dark times. what they need is a practical solution that will show them THE way to do it, cuz there MUST BE a way to do each and every thing right.

    and all this while, we're only discussing barre chords. things get much harder ahead when guys start learning scales and leads and are having difficulty with their finger speed and stuff. what teacher who possesses such an incomplete information about the very basics of guitar playing do in that case? again, "try hard"?

    and c'mon, knowing more about urself physically, mentally, emotionally isn't such a bad thing after all! it helps to know urself full well to realise all ur potentials, just as well as ur weaknesses precisely so that u can work and improve upon them.
  18. jayanth

    jayanth <.: : Call Quits : :.>

    All i said was dont focus too much on those.. It wont get you anywhere only your fingers and frets will.. THink for yourself.. If a guitarist gets up on stage and checks his posture and his body and fingers whether they are in the right place. The only solution is to play what you wanna play they way you a comfortable with.

    I know you didnt challenge my status as a guitarist that was for Vijay..

    See this specific book was written for commercial purposes.. It have mainly unrequired facts.. Yopu'll realise when you read it completely.
  19. esgallindeion

    esgallindeion Minstrel Knight

    Don't waste time trying to do all that... its completely pointless and also harmful to u as a guitarist if it eats up your practice time.
  20. prash_rocks

    prash_rocks Over the Hills & Far Away


    fine, i'm intelligent enough to decide for myself what i 'feel' to be true, without falling in any of those commercial ruts, and i can see the utility of the idea behind it.

    and i've always felt it's more sane not to pronounce anything to be pointless without fully realising what the thing stands for.

    anyway, others may choose it or lose it, that's not a fig my concern. i see the result myself and my progress and that's a proof sufficient unto me.

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