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BigOrangeBri
Tennessee Fan
Nashville- 4th & 19
Member since Jul 2012
10346 posts

re: People who play guitar
Three words.

Practice

Patience

Persistence


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tidalmouse
Whatsamotta U.
Member since Jan 2009
28512 posts

re: People who play guitar
quote:

Im working with it. Learning D and A chords now. Ring finger does not want to work with the others but its easier today than it was yesterday. I do about 10 mins at a time, 5 or 6 times per day right now A is easier than D for me. Im not comfortable with my wrist bent so much. Its getting more comfy but just feels weird.


Lanier,you're training your fingers to do things that are un-natural.It will become natural over time.

Just keep practicing.

The last piece for me was rhythm in my picking hand.After that I was able to play any song that I knew the rhythm to.

Pull up the Chords and Lyrics on the Laptop and in 1-2 days I've committed another song to memory.

It's called "Muscle Memory";what allows your hand to retain all the Chord Shapes,etc..

Have fun and never lose your love for the Guitar.

I saw your Taylor.Great guitar.


auggie
Auburn Fan
Opelika, Alabama
Member since Aug 2013
11547 posts

re: People who play guitar
quote:

It's called "Muscle Memory"


I have exercises that I do, even when I don't have the guitar in my hands.
Simple stuff, like touching the tips of my fingers to the end of my thumb, in different patterns and keep getting faster, just to help motor skills.

I realize that this doesn't relate to muscle memory, but motor skills are important too. Especially when learning new stuff.
This post was edited on 11/19 at 10:05 pm


Boring
Member since Feb 2019
339 posts

re: People who play guitar
I haven't read the entire thread, but I wanted to chime in with some things that I think get overlooked for new musicians:

1) Don't buy crappy gear to start off with. You don't need to blow thousands of dollars, but get something decent so that you aren't frustrated trying to learn on some POS guitar with an amp that sounds like garbage. If you want more specific recommendations then let me know, I'm always happy to talk gear!

2) Learn songs you actually fricking like. There's absolutely no rule that says you have to know how to play Twinkle Twinkle, Little Star before you can learn cool stuff. Do you like Nirvana or The Ramones? Grab some tabs, pull up the song on Spotify and get to work - both of those bands have some extremely easy songs that kick arse and are fun to play. Obviously don't pick super hard shit, but songs that you know the groove by heart will always be easier to learn than some deep cut Beatles song you've only heard once but your guitar teacher swears that EVERY REAL GUITARIST KNOWS THIS ONE!

3) Learning an instrument is like learning a language when you're a baby. You can get up to speed really fast by just being around other musicians and listening to them "talk" in the language of music. I'm not suggesting you go out and join a band, but if you've got some friends who also play instruments then just jam with them. Hell it can just be jamming on one or two chords for an hour, it doesn't really matter.

4) Always always always have your guitar nearby to noodle around on. Watching the game? Waiting on dinner to finish in the oven? Got a free couple of hours before you gotta pick the kids up from soccer practice? Grab the guitar and just screw around on it. Always be playing man, you never know what awesome riffs you may stumble across when you're not even thinking/trying.

5) There's so much free information available on tab websites and Youtube, I wouldn't recommend paying for anything, especially if you're just a hobbyist/weekend warrior.

6) Don't get frustrated with yourself. There are two types of learning (probably more, but humor me) - factual learning (George Washington was the first President of the United States) and process learning. Learning to play music is a process that you just have to keep adding layers to day by day. Don't focus on achievement or meeting milestones, focus on PROGRESS. Maybe today you can only play a C chord, but you couldn't play shite this time last year, so guess what? You've made progress!


auggie
Auburn Fan
Opelika, Alabama
Member since Aug 2013
11547 posts

re: People who play guitar
Great post, especially about learning the things that you love.


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10
LanierSpots
Auburn Fan
Senior Sidewalk Fan
Member since Sep 2010
47412 posts

re: People who play guitar
quote:

1) Don't buy crappy gear to start off with. You don't need to blow thousands of dollars, but get something decent so that you aren't frustrated trying to learn on some POS guitar with an amp that sounds like garbage. If you want more specific recommendations then let me know, I'm always happy to talk gear!


I think I got a decent fiddle. Taylor 114ce



quote:

2) Learn songs you actually fricking like. There's absolutely no rule that says you have to know how to play Twinkle Twinkle, Little Star before you can learn cool stuff. Do you like Nirvana or The Ramones?



yea, I think its obvious that my first real song will be a Floyd tune. Maybe parts of Wish you were here. For now, lets concentrate on getting my fingers in the right places.


quote:

4) Always always always have your guitar nearby to noodle around on. Watching the game? Waiting on dinner to finish in the oven?


I had someone else recommend this. Maybe it was aggie. I have been doing that. I work from a shop alone for the most part. I have it there and at different times in the day, I just take a 10-15 min break and do a little. Boss is a dick but Im doing it anyway.

quote:

5) There's so much free information available on tab websites and Youtube, I wouldn't recommend paying for anything, especially if you're just a hobbyist/weekend warrior.


Im working with the justinguitar.com guy. Explains things well and seems to be on point with a lot of guys here.


quote:

6) Don't get frustrated with yourself.


Im old and patient. I hope this wont become a issue.


Thanks for the great advice. I know all this is rudimentary to a lot of the posters here but its very valuable to me, a true beginner.


tidalmouse
Whatsamotta U.
Member since Jan 2009
28512 posts

re: People who play guitar
1 advantage an older player has,is all the Songs that you know the rhythm and words to.

Once you get a bunch of Chords in your head and your hand,and you get rhythm in your picking hand;then the Songs you learn to play are only limited to the time you put into it.

Have fun.


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LanierSpots
Auburn Fan
Senior Sidewalk Fan
Member since Sep 2010
47412 posts

re: People who play guitar
Im sure this is another dumb question but here we go

When I got my guitar, my friend put new strings on it. Lighter strings for me since I am learning.

I tuned it using the electronic tuner that I have on the head of the guitar. I got the "Super Tight" tuner that was recommend here. When I first tuned it, each string was set dead center of the green area on the tuner. I have been checking it each day when I pick it up for the first time to see if it is staying in tune. Over the past few days, I have noticed that each string is lose/flat? About the same amount on each string. What was dead center green is not lose some.


Is this due to the tuner or are the strings changing? Should I adjust/tune it everyday?


awestruck
Auburn Fan
Member since Jan 2015
5188 posts

re: People who play guitar
They'll change in response to all manners of things. Temperature is a biggie. Humidity will also make them change, just having a room fill up with people will alter them some. And yes new strings will stretch a bit for the first few days. Cheap (or worn) tuners are a possibility although with a new Taylor of that grade that's extremely unlikely. Try moving up a bit toward a camp fire and check, then move back a few feet and recheck. It has to do with thin wood and thicker wood and and steel strings and so on they all move at different rates to different stresses.

I'm not a fan of letting mine (acoustic-talk) warm up too fast or cool down too fast. And never lock it up in a hot car.... that's very bad juju... this can do a lot of damage. I usually allow mine to adjust to temperature changes while sitting in it's case, in the hope it will does so more gradually.

eta :IE: strings tuning; the tuner should be fine until low battery time
This post was edited on 11/19 at 7:54 pm


awestruck
Auburn Fan
Member since Jan 2015
5188 posts

re: People who play guitar
I'd also suggest a soft cotton cloth to wipe down your strings after playing. It helps to really increase their lifespan. For some this will make them last months, for others mabe a couple weeks, and others just days longer.

There are some people who have string killer hands that for whatever reason wreck strings... could be moisture, acidity, oils, or ... I don't know exactly why. Mine don't seem to have much effect and most people I know aren't in the days killer range, so don't sweat it.

More of a FYI that it's better to wipe them down.


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LanierSpots
Auburn Fan
Senior Sidewalk Fan
Member since Sep 2010
47412 posts

re: People who play guitar
quote:

For some this will make them last months, for others mabe a couple weeks, and others just days longer.


That brings up a good question. How long would one expect strings to last? Normally



awestruck
Auburn Fan
Member since Jan 2015
5188 posts

re: People who play guitar
That's a can of worms question.

Of course how long they been played, whether wiped down, hand corrosiveness, if you do a lot of bends, tune up or down frequently (ie: alternate tunings from standard to not standards and back), again humidity/moisture is a biggie. And all this will vary from person to person.

Starting out I'd maybe shoot for 5-6 weeks and then listen real good before changing (maybe record) so you can tell how the new ones sounds. Stand back to be overwhelmed good or bad. You can find videos on string changing ... this also a good time to wipe down (clean up) your guitar. Another can of worms is using what - Maybe FretShack will offer the luthier method. I switch up between Martin's pump spray and Stewart McDonald's preservation stuff.

I like mine better after a few hours and others delight in a squeaky new sound. It's really a personal taste. eta: If you can't tell a difference it was too soon and if not you can adjust accordingly. And maybe next time go longer for fun... strings tend to die a slow death for me. This has been hashed out here before... so I know there's many who like to always hear bright new strings.
This post was edited on 11/19 at 8:29 pm


LanierSpots
Auburn Fan
Senior Sidewalk Fan
Member since Sep 2010
47412 posts

re: People who play guitar
Progressing. Ive been working on a few chords and getting comfortable with them. I can pick it up, immediately do a D Chord most of the time. Quickly and without looking. Working on A now and switching back and forth to D.

Biggest issue for me is touching neighboring strings and occasionally my hand touches the high E string but Im working on that.

Started spending a few mins every now and then just watching some videos of songs I like and learning small pieces of them. That has been fun. A few runs of Shine on you crazy diamond, Smile and a little House of the rising sun.

Anyway, a little more comfy... Learned how to change a string too. Dont ask.


auggie
Auburn Fan
Opelika, Alabama
Member since Aug 2013
11547 posts

re: People who play guitar
"Endeavor to persevere, endeavor to persevere".


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TheCurmudgeon
LSU Fan
SE Louisiana
Member since Aug 2014
1138 posts

re: People who play guitar
Keep it up. Your progress will live or die based on muscle memory. If you're on D, burn the D in, as well as the G and A and switching between the three.

quote:

Biggest issue for me is touching neighboring strings and occasionally my hand touches the high E string but Im working on that.


Point your knuckles to the ceiling, not to the wall.

Keep it up!!!


LanierSpots
Auburn Fan
Senior Sidewalk Fan
Member since Sep 2010
47412 posts

re: People who play guitar
quote:

If you're on D, burn the D in, as well as the G and A and switching between the three.



This is exactly what I a doing right now.


tidalmouse
Whatsamotta U.
Member since Jan 2009
28512 posts

re: People who play guitar
You'll be surprised later on at the simplicity of a lot of the Chord Structures in songs you'll learn.

Every Buddy Holly song is E,A,and D.The structure of the Chords is brilliant.

You mentioned "Wish You Were Here".G,D,Am,C.The Chord Structures are brilliant.

You're on your way.Have fun.


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Boring
Member since Feb 2019
339 posts

re: People who play guitar
Dude if you can do A and D, you can already play most of Peggy Sue by Buddy Holly and Blitzkrieg Bop by the Ramomes

Before you know it, you’ll be puttin your wang in a buncha sweet poontang at gigs!

Also, who said point your knuckles at the ceiling instead of the wall has instantly made me sit here and over analyze how I’ve been playing for the last 17 years. Sounds like good advice but... shite man, now I feel like I’ve been doing things incorrectly or inefficiently


tidalmouse
Whatsamotta U.
Member since Jan 2009
28512 posts

re: People who play guitar
quote:

I’ve been playing for the last 17 years


Me too.

I'm self-taught.I think my knuckles are pointed at the floor.

I just grip it and rip it.


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AmosMosesAndTwins
New Orleans Saints Fan
Lake Charles
Member since Apr 2010
14168 posts

re: People who play guitar
Self-taught here, 20 years this Christmas.

Although your ultimate goal is guitar, I can tell you that starting on bass helped me tremendously. Getting your fingers to do unnatural things is exponentially more difficult when you’ve got multiple fingers trying to land the right distance from the right fret on the right string with the right pressure at the right time. It’s frustrating when your hands won’t do what your brain wants and missing on parts of chords ruins your result - for a beginner, that discouragement is like death by 1000 cuts.

Bass can be far less complex while still teaching you the basics and building hand strength. Learning to navigate the fret board is far easier when you can focus on getting only one finger (and the majority of the time one of the two fingers with which you have the best coordination) where it needs to be with two fewer strings. Hitting the note you want happens quicker and more frequently and all those little wins are confidence builders. I think it helps build coordination between the fret hand and pick hand, develop rhythm, and learn picking skills with more space and forgiveness. From there, you start mixing in your palm mutes, hammer-ons and pull-offs, and power chords. Once I hit this point, I’d throw a distortion pedal on that bad boy and rip.

Transitioning from bass to guitar, your hand strength is naturally more than sufficient on much lighter strings and your fingers nice and callused. Your hand goes where you’re brain tells it to and you’ve got some picking accuracy and rhythm, freeing much of your focus for incorporating more fingers to make your chords.

Stick with it and you’ll be surprised by what you can do eventually. Never stop challenging your skill level. I remember feeling accomplished hitting the basic riff from Smoke on the Water on bass for the first time. Now I’m fingerpicking with multiclaps while my right foot plays a cajon and my left a tambourine.



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