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Darran
04-14-2003, 04:02 PM
Any of you out there give me some insight into applying what you practise?

I spend a considerable amount of time learning solos from guitar mags, and various other arrangement of tunes; yet when handed a guitar and asked to play, I'm completely stumped!

For instance, I've been learning a chord melody piece called 'James' by Pat Metheny; how would I go about incorparating elements of this into my style?

Any of you guys use the CAGED system to give your licks context? If so, tell me how you apply it, I would be interested.

Wyll_Watts
04-16-2003, 09:26 PM
When I started off I was really deep into a situation like this.. I could play all sorts of random stuff that was pretty difficult but when it came down to actually playing something that was complete and had my own style I just sucked.. I got out of that by mostly changing my mindset and approach to guitar..
First, ask yourself.. Why do I want to play guitar? and then, What do I want to play and/or sound like? don't cop out of these questions, they seem simple buy are so fundamental in the overall process of growth.. sit down and think about them.. throughout your guitar experience in life you should always have those questions and the current answers in mind..

now it comes to the actual playing.. best thing you can do is to learn whole songs. Solos, licks, and progressions are nice, but mean little without a context. As far as incorporating things you learn into your own style.. Well, you don't really want to force things into your style.. You may not ever want or need to play that chord solo in any other context, but you may want to use the approach Metheny was using there.. In other words, look at what he's doing to get a certain sound, to express a certain emotion.. Those are the things I think are really important as far as influences go..

The other thing, practice, practice.. everything slowly falls together over time.. Most of what I'm speaking of here is the mental approach to your playing.. Another way of application is just to basically take licks and pieces from all over the place and just kind of piece them together in your own way and eventually your own style arises and the licks and rip-offs are not obvious any longer.. this method works best for some people, but it really didn't help me all that much..

Well, all of that may have been completely useless :-).. well, I guess the most important part is learn whole songs that you can just sit down and play.. and slowly your influences and interpretation will come through..

Excuse the Rambling,
Wyll Watts

Darran
04-16-2003, 10:25 PM
Originally posted by Wyll_Watts
First, ask yourself.. Why do I want to play guitar? and then, What do I want to play and/or sound like? don't cop out of these questions, they seem simple buy are so fundamental in the overall process of growth.. sit down and think about them.. throughout your guitar experience in life you should always have those questions and the current answers in mind..


Thanks for the reply mate!

This is probably the hardest question to ponder and the one that I avoid subconciously.

I think its the easiest thing in the world to constantly practise, but you're right, it is no use without context, and that's probably why I struggle when put on the spot. I practise without thinking, and probably like a lot of musicians just assume that one day, when I'm technically proficient, creativity will find its way through and I'll be writing in no time. Wrong!

I think the most profound lesson I've learnt in the last couple of months that quantity does not equal quality; and that the 6 or so hours that I've practised will not suddenly transform itself into music at a later date. The hardest part is working out why you practise certain things, why you want to, and how to make them personal.

Anyone else have these problems?