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View Full Version : I need things to include in a practise schedule!



Jamie FT
03-23-2005, 01:38 AM
For the amount of time I've been playing (3 and a half years) I'm awful. Now I've decided to recitify this and start a practise schedule and practise instead of just playing a riff or two at the computer like I have been doing for far too long. But whenever I come around to writing a schedule I forget a lot of really good things to include. Please could you list some things that are essential to practise and will turn me into a well-rounded musician. I hope to do something with guitar/music as a job later in life, so any information here would be greatly recieved thanks. :)

Mateo150
03-23-2005, 01:42 AM
Ear training, rhythm training... those should be at the top of the list in my opinion.

Jamie FT
03-23-2005, 01:44 AM
Ear training I just thought of as well, thanks.

As for rhythm training, I've been looking at some magazine tabs, where they have the sheet music above it and as long as it's not to hard I can do it, although it takes a very long time for me. But I guess that's what practise is for!

GuitarDreamer20
03-23-2005, 04:12 AM
I'm just going to throw some ideas off the top of my head:

Ear-Training
Music Theory
Technique
Sight-reading
Rhythmic studies/playing
Fretboard Visualization (scales, chords, arpeggios, etc.)

MOST OF ALL: SONGWRITING. DO NOT FORGET ABOUT THIS! It's more important than all of the others!

Mike

rmuscat
03-23-2005, 09:46 AM
Get down your theory as soon as possible. It takes just some work a day and you'd get a decent level.

and...

Jam! Jam! Jam! apply anything you learn.

Some tarts don't do any harm either :p

Arpetude
03-23-2005, 10:18 AM
the question you should ask yourself?


where do you want to be (musically) in the NEXT 3 and a half years.

post your answer, and we can make a schedule geared towards that goal.

for example...if you want to be yngwie then sight-reading(or any musical staff reading) is NOT essential. yngwie can't read off staff, also you have to work on picking tecnique and you will have to become a technique driven player. jazz theory or finger picking are NOT necessary and would be a waste of time for accomplishing your goal.

see what i mean?

post your goal!:) .

Jamie FT
03-23-2005, 12:44 PM
Great advice guys!

Arpetude: I love metal, but also many instrumentalists such as Vai, Malmsteen, Satch, Petrucci, etc. In fact Vai is one of the reasons for this thead. He's got the amazing perfect technique, knows the theory, has perfect pitch, writes amazing songs, nearly the lot! (I say nearly because he can't have perfected EVERYTHING)

But I guess metal is my main influence, bands such as Metallica, Slayer, Children of Bodom, Opeth, Dream Theater, Pantera, Dragonforce, etc, etc.

So I guess my goal is too be in a metal band but maybe realise a solo album one day.

Arpetude
03-23-2005, 02:22 PM
thats cool,

i think you know what you need to do. BUY INSTRUCTIONALS. like yngwie malmsteen - get the yngwie one. i own + can play the shred licks from it (seems to turn a few heads). also JP one (no killer licks - more technique but worth it).

i say instructionals to be your main source of study. and of course learning riffs + solos from TAB(check out powertab archive). i remember the first riff and solos i learned were metalicas 'ONE + 'master of puppet's so check them out. ONE is very progressive and the clean solo at the start is a good example of playing in key and sounding good. when playing that song- if you have a tuner plug it in to your guitar -and play the notes and look at mettalicas choise of notes and learn from them. that is what i did.

however my goals (as soon as i heard yngwie) have been geared towards that more 'solo artist' approach. and i feel being in a band will not help me accomplish that goal. Another thing i recomend is actively seeking out technique FIRST....THEN MUSICALLITY. i got these instructionals within the 1st year of playing which made sure that i would not develop bad technique so i could express myself fully(being able to play in a wide tempo range). if you develop good technique it will really help down the line as you wont be putting in the 'incorrect' motions at the start...which you then have to revisit years later....this is, of course, if your goal is speed guitaring like yngwie.

so to round up:

Instructionals - for licks + theory (but the theory would be geared towards soloing shred - so no jazz that you won't need etc.)

TABS - for riffs and learning solos directly from your influences (most powertabs are awesome - yngwies' blitzreigh,trilogy,far beyond the sun - are tabed extremely well) those tabs ALONE will keep you busy with patterns for years.

Jamie FT
03-23-2005, 04:36 PM
Thank you, you have really helped. I'm still gonna learn to sightread, and things, but I'll follow your ideas.

Also, because you've mentioned it, I've actually decided to try and learn the whole of Master Of Puppets and a number of different ways, such as the spider riff in the intro. I usually play this entirely alternate picked and muted, and can play that with ease full speed, but some people say it's supposed to be downpicked, or the notes on the A string aren't muted. So I'm trying to do it in a number of different ways, at the moment I'm awful at downpicking and I can't do the riff with the A string notes un-muted at full speed, my hand looks really funny, almost like a slap bass, trying to do that mute some but not others, so I think I have to work on my technique.

Anyway, thanks again! :D

Buebo
03-23-2005, 04:42 PM
Ok first thing you need to do is to join a metal band NOW. There is much more to good performing then being able to nail some quick passages in your bedroom! That's why I really disagree with Arp. Learn to play rhythm and play it tight thats probably the most important thing for any musician. When you join a band you will notice even when you know your stuff you will still need quite some work together to get it to sound tight and like one. Start writing songs on a regular basis, they don't have to be complex, it can be simple chord progessions or short melodies. Also never forget that composing comes from your mind and heart and not from your technique.
Ofcourse in the meantime you still have time to work on your technique and I'm not saying thats not important. But if you really want to create something that will appeal to people, you shouldn't be seeking that in technique/mechanics. And last but not least, seek a band and perform. Nothing compares to performing. Nothing!

Arpetude
03-23-2005, 07:39 PM
Thank you, you have really helped. I'm still gonna learn to sightread, and things, but I'll follow your ideas.

Also, because you've mentioned it, I've actually decided to try and learn the whole of Master Of Puppets and a number of different ways, such as the spider riff in the intro. I usually play this entirely alternate picked and muted, and can play that with ease full speed, but some people say it's supposed to be downpicked, or the notes on the A string aren't muted. So I'm trying to do it in a number of different ways, at the moment I'm awful at downpicking and I can't do the riff with the A string notes un-muted at full speed, my hand looks really funny, almost like a slap bass, trying to do that mute some but not others, so I think I have to work on my technique.

Anyway, thanks again! :D
ok, have a good one mate:) .

btw i checked out that riff.....no way. its not possible to downpick that speed. its 8ths at 210!!!....its not possible to downpick that. EVEN I WOULD NOT DOWNPICK THAT(and i can play that damn fast chromatic exercise from rock disicipline at FULL JOHN PETRUCCI SPEED). so i would only be able to play that particular riff at 190? downpicked (reasons being becuase you are switching strings - i can downpick one string at 200 8ths).don't waste your time giving yourself physically impossible goals.

What next.....downpick.....MALMSTEEN:eek: .

Jamie FT
03-23-2005, 08:41 PM
Pah! Who can't downpick Malmsteen! :p

Well it's something else for me to work on, I must say that switching between the muted E-0-1- and the unmuted A-2- is very hard indeed at full speed for me because I'm not used to it and my hand flaps about everywhere. :(

and Beubo, I've been meaning to get into a band for quite a while now. Unfourtunately all the musicians around my area are already in bands, and not great fans of metal. I'll probably either ask on a different forum I'm on in the classified section (MX if anyone's interested) or put a ad in a local music shop window. The only problem is if I've never met the person before I'm a bit shy, so they'll be loads of crappy uncombfortable silences. :( What would you do to rememdy this? I was thinking say on the phone/email/whatever to learn a song on their instrument that I could learn too and we play it and see how it goes. Any other ideas?


EDIT: Oh and just read EricV's excellent songwriting article and I'm just strumming some chords trying to make something that resembles a song, and I'm wondering: when strumming without a pick what fingers/thumb do you use?

diablosrising
03-24-2005, 06:25 AM
Great advice guys!

Arpetude: I love metal, but also many instrumentalists such as Vai, Malmsteen, Satch, Petrucci, etc. In fact Vai is one of the reasons for this thead. He's got the amazing perfect technique, knows the theory, has perfect pitch, writes amazing songs, nearly the lot! (I say nearly because he can't have perfected EVERYTHING)

But I guess metal is my main influence, bands such as Metallica, Slayer, Children of Bodom, Opeth, Dream Theater, Pantera, Dragonforce, etc, etc.

So I guess my goal is too be in a metal band but maybe realise a solo album one day. I know where you're at, and it's frustrating. I feel that I've gotten pretty good at the guitar, and I wished there was something like this when I started. I've been playing for 10 years, and every time I make an advancement in my playing, I look back and feel like I was so bad for so long.

You have to play all the time when you're first starting. Yes, I know there are some prodigious players out there who were bada**es after the first couple of years, but some of us take a lot longer to *bloom*, myself included. Here's my advice: pick some songs you REALLY love, ones that maybe don't sound too complex for you right now.

You mentioned metallica. They have some easier ones floating around, as does Pantera(sans solos, of course). I would buy every tab book i could get my hands on by metallica, and I would struggle through the riffs in there until it somewhat resembled the song. I'd practice along w/ the tapes, too.

Playing with other people helps ALOT, cuz if you want to make it in music, you're gonna be doing that all the time. You might as well get used to it now.

You can play to a click,to a cd, or whatever and get all your scales down and theory and whatnot, but jammin w/ someone else gets you some people skills and some sync'ing skills. I don't mean on a timing level, I mean more of a mental thing. Getting on the same page w/ other musicians.

Find someone at school (not sure of your age)or look for ads at a music store for someone who wants to find other musicians to play with.

DO NOT MAKE PLAYING A CHORE! You should want to be playing. I'm not saying to not to practice scales or work on things you'd rather not be working on. I just mean in general. If you say "man, I don't want to play guitar this week," you really have to question how much you love it.

diablosrising
03-24-2005, 06:35 AM
ok, have a good one mate:) .

btw i checked out that riff.....no way. its not possible to downpick that speed. its 8ths at 210!!!....its not possible to downpick that. EVEN I WOULD NOT DOWNPICK THAT(and i can play that damn fast chromatic exercise from rock disicipline at FULL JOHN PETRUCCI SPEED). so i would only be able to play that particular riff at 190? downpicked (reasons being becuase you are switching strings - i can downpick one string at 200 8ths).don't waste your time giving yourself physically impossible goals.

What next.....downpick.....MALMSTEEN:eek: . That riff is totally, completely, 100% downpicked. It takes some skill to acheive it. I learned it the cheaters way first, putting my shoulder into the picking, but eventually just loosened the wrist and played it slow. Then I could build up the speed. Malmsteen doesn't downpick, he probably can't, but I'm not trying to start a flame war here. Malmsteen's very good at what he does, and I respect that. So, it's not physically impossible. It's quite possible. Granted I leanred it sloppy and wrong at first, but I learned it nonetheless. In fact, I don't know if Hetfield uses an upstroke in the WHOLE SONG. Even the SUPER fast part after the solo. The E E E F# G A B C D E F# D deally. THAT part is hard.

Somethin that always helped me w/ hard stuff was coming back to it if I got stuck. If you get caught up on something, learn something else. Take some time off from that particular riff, and come back to it. It helps.

Jamie FT
03-24-2005, 01:02 PM
I'm glad I've found someone similar. :) I think in these holidays I'll sort this band thing out once and for all and put a ad in a shop window, hopefully that'll get the ball moving.

As for the MOP 'spider' riff, I'm starting to practise with downstrokes and doing ok, the problem for me is changing from muted to un-muted at fast speeds, and I never knew the bit at the end was downpicked! :( That is going to take some work..........

diablosrising
03-24-2005, 02:47 PM
I'm glad I've found someone similar. :) I think in these holidays I'll sort this band thing out once and for all and put a ad in a shop window, hopefully that'll get the ball moving.

As for the MOP 'spider' riff, I'm starting to practise with downstrokes and doing ok, the problem for me is changing from muted to un-muted at fast speeds, and I never knew the bit at the end was downpicked! :( That is going to take some work.......... Yeah, the E E E "gallop" isn't, but the rest of the riff is all down strokes
---------------------------------------------
---------------------------------------------
---------------------------------------------
-----------------------2-4-5----------------
----------------2-3-5---------3---------------
-0-0-0-2-3-5---------------------------------
D U D D D D D D D D D D D

I think that's right. I actually haven't played it in awhile.


As for the spider thing, make sure you're using all four left hand fingers.
Use the index for the F on the E string, the middle for the B on the A string, the ring for the C on the A string, and the pinky for the C# on the A string. That way your hand doesn't have to flail all around, your fingers just press down.

For your right hand, it's kind of hard to describe w/ out showing you. I kind of move my hand up and off the E string after each series of strokes on the E. That way I'm un-muted for the other notes on the A string. I almost pick diagonally down into the E for that part. I wish I could show ya!

Jamie FT
03-24-2005, 11:46 PM
Well I think I get it. :)

As for the riff, I do use all my left hand fingers properly it's my right hand that flails awkwardly trying to mute and un-mute things, I'll just keep at it. Thanks for all the help! :D

diablosrising
03-25-2005, 05:46 AM
Well I think I get it. :)

As for the riff, I do use all my left hand fingers properly it's my right hand that flails awkwardly trying to mute and un-mute things, I'll just keep at it. Thanks for all the help! :D Just keep at it, dude. You'll get it. Start slow. Go so slow that you can't screw up. Then increase the tempo as needed.