Learning and practicing for a kind-of experienced player

Discuss playing styles and techniques, or share your own here.
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Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2013 7:35 am

Hi guys! I'm not so new here, but it's been a while, so I had to make a new account...
Anyway, I have quite a few things to write, so I'll try to separate them by topics, hope it won't be too much.

INTRO: I'm playing for about 8 years. I had a phase of listening and playing nothing but instrumental pieces, but shredding was never my cup of tea. I never liked it very much, although I find it very impressive. I also never learned scales, chord proggresions and never practiced my speed and my left-right hand coordination properly - for what I played in these 8 years I covered what I needed, and now I want to improve because...

REASONS: Honestly, I got tired of virtuosos like Steve, Satch, Gilbert and a few more I listened to a few years back. I went back to hard rock and blues, which I found have more to do with my life than instrumental pieces. I lived my life as a "rock-star" for those few years. Drinking, smoking, getting into trouble on a few occasions, almost f*ing up my college, playing in a small number of bands and achieved nothing meaningful. I'm 23, almost 24, and I just started writing my first songs for my band (lyrics and arrangements). Recently I took control of my life before I lost it completely and things started to get better, and a few days ago I saw Jason Becker's "Not Dead Yet" documentary. It really blew me away. I knew about Jason, but only a few details, I didn't know he was still making music. That movie seemes to have been an instant inspiration. I somehow gained more tranquillity for everything I do and it gave me an urge to learn and absorb things I didn't know before. My musical life was a lot like Jason's, but in a much smaller scale - smaller achievements and smaller problems, but there are some similarities. So now I want to do everything I can to make myself a better player and a musician. And that leads us to the nect topic (one more IMPORTANT thing: I know there's probably about 23 million topics like this, but I feel like I have some kind of a condition - if I don't have everything I need in one place, I tend to get lost in informations and disoriented. Every time. So I hope this separate thread just for me won't be a big problem to the mods and admins)

REQUESTS: First of all - the basics. I need to learn scales, modulations, chord proggressions... everything pretty much. I know a couple of scales and all of my time as a guitar player I used my ears to figure out what fits and what doesn't. But I want to learn. Please, bare in mind that I'm from Croatia, so not every book out there is available to me, and I would really appreciate some web-sites or stuff like that that have scales, examples of scales fitting with certain chords, chord proggressions and pretty much as much musical theory I can learn. (I can't read score music, so tabs would be a must for me)

Second part is technique. I am considered a good player amongst my friends that are into music and amongst pretty much every one who has seen me play - but that's only because I know how to avoid my weaknesses. I want to learn to play fast, I want to learn arpeggios, sweep picking, I want to be able to shred, tap and I want to gain more control of my left hand, especially my pinky. (a problem for me is, e.g. I sometimes know what to play, but my fingers get mixed up so I play the right notes, but in different order). I know it's a lot of work and practicing "dull" scales and exercises, but I would like to get some pointers and examples of excercises. So in a nutshell - playing fast - every hint and exercise I can get from you guys.

Thirdly, I want to work on my ears. I learned to play Jason's "The River of Longing (reprise)" yesterday, I got it around 90-95% accurately, so I would like some examples of not to long, and not too demanding instrumental pieces to practice my hearing. Something like that song. The more songs you can think of - the better.

And that's pretty much it - I know it's a bunch, but I would really appreciate it!

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Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Jun 09, 2019 5:53 pm

I completely understand what you're saying. A while ago I got sick of all the big name virtuoso players who just kind of seem to be showing off in their music. There was something missing after a while. No soul or feeling. It was just show. Blues with some real gritty improvising is where it's at for me.

If you want to expand your musical styles and learn something new, I'd recommend checking out some type of lesson service that offers a wide range of musical styles. There are several different places online that have guitar lesson videos that can show you how to play scales, chords, and improvising in pretty much every style.

I'd check some of those out and see if there is anything that you want to learn. That's what I did. It was pretty cool to be able to go back to the basics and learn a few different styles. I found out that I actually really like playing fingerstyle acoustic guitar. All I used to play was metal or Vai type stuff, so that was kind of a shock.

Anyways, it's worth a shot.
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