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Thread: Don't want to play anymore.....

  1. #1
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    Don't want to play anymore.....

    This is a story of a failure and vanished hopes, a story of a person whoíve fallen in love with guitar ten years ago but now canít even touch itÖÖ..
    Iíve started to play late, when I was about 19 and like many others I did it with classical guitar: my goal was to learn how to play the chords in order to sing along them.
    When I had enough money I bought an electric guitar, a Fender Strat. I remember that I didnít even try it (in the shop), I was just attracted by the shape, the style. From then Iíve started to practice, hoping to become a good player; during the good times I was able to play for 4 hours a day, but I also had the problem of the study (Iíve been to University), so....there were also the bad days of no practice at all. Anyway, I donít wanna annoy you, so, in short: many years has gone by, for many years I picked up the guitar to practice but I still didnít reach my goalsÖ..Whatís the result?? I quit. Iím fed up. Fed up to see 16 years old boy that can play a lot better than meÖÖ
    I used to love the guitar but now I nearly hate it!!! As I said before, I canít even touch it anymore, and thatís really sad. I was so excited at the beginning but now Iíve lost all the stimulus, all the joy. Iím going to sell my guitar, amp, tabs and some pickups.
    Ok, that was a resume of the facts. Now Iím gonna tell you the same story, but from a technical point of view.

    I never took lessons from a teacher, Iím self-taught.
    I never played with a band. Itís been a great suffering for me, I always had the problem of playing in front of other people, and I never solved it; this means that I always practised with my 30w amp, inside, and I didnít really play at high volumes. Maybe, that has been a problem because my idea is that if you play at low volume (all the time) you canít develop a light touch which is fundamental for playing guitar.
    The touch. I wasnít really happy of this aspect of my technique (?), too much tensionÖÖtoo much pressure on the strings, and a bad attack with the pick. On many situations I wanted to pick hard, really hard, because of the music, that was heavy, nasty, and I needed to put anger in it; thatís why I thought that maybe I should learn the play drums in order to give vent to my anger and play in a hard and nasty way.
    The main problem I had from a technical point of view was the picking technique (motion).
    Iím sure I didnít have a good coordination between the two hands, but the right hand maybe was the weakest. Anyway, I used to pick in a strange way, hereís an explanation:

    - I used to hold the pick in a strange way, in fact the index didnít rest on the left side of the index finger, so it was held between the lower parts of index and thumb, but not perfectly centred, a bit outside, if you understand what I mean;
    - The pick attack. I used to the pick in a strange way, nearly from the left side off the pick, never from the centre tip.

    I said to myself: ďnevermindĒ. Everyone picks in a different way, everyone has a different style.
    Well, the problem is, I didnít have any style! It wasnít effective!! If I start to pick, I feel a certain resistance when I touch the strings. Too bad!!! Itís like I have a hook instead of a pickÖÖIíve tried in many ways to solve the problemÖÖ.nothing!!
    And, what about fluidity??? After many years I donít know what it means, I canít play a major scale fast, I can only play (for ex.) triplets and fourths slowly, I just canít go up and down the neck in a fluid way!!!
    I cannot cross the strings properly!!! Itís so depressingÖ.. I know that you usually get what youíve given but I didnít obtain anything!!! I know that some people have more talent than others, so Iím sure I donít have any talent. But, hey?? I suck, considering the hours I spent on the instrument!!
    I knew from the beginning that I couldnít be Steve Morse or John Petrucci, but I hoped to be able to play at least hard rock/metal in a satisfactory way!! Sometimes, I wasnít able to play pentatonic stuff. Thatís ridiculous!!!! When youíre a person like me that has grown up listening to so many different styles (Led Zeppelin, Steve Morse, Tribal Tech, Jason Becker, Greg Howe, Shawn Lane, Death, Pantera, Dream Theater, Allan Holdsworth, Meshuggah, ecc.ecc.), when youíre a person that has many ideas in the head, but you canít put them into practice, itís frustrating!!! When all you can do with guitar is to play a few chords and some pentatonic stuff, well, itís fair to say:
    ďItís enough, guitar itís not for meĒ.
    Iíd like to know if there are other people that decided to stop playing guitar, and if thereís anyone who started to play another instrument, with good results.

  2. #2
    JazzNerd gersdal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zoso
    ...for many years I picked up the guitar to practice but I still didnít reach my goalsÖ..Whatís the result?? I quit. Iím fed up. Fed up to see 16 years old boy that can play a lot better than meÖÖ
    ....
    Iíd like to know if there are other people that decided to stop playing guitar, and if thereís anyone who started to play another instrument, with good results.
    Hi Zoso, I must admitt that I also have had a lot of bad feelings about my guitar playing over the years. I guess my starting point was becomming a rock-star or somthing. To put it mildly, that has not become the case. I'm stuck as a "not very recognisable guitar player". It feels quite unneccessary for the world to have yet another mediocrity playing guitar. Still, guitar playing is my best recreation. I love putting my mind into the creative process of creating new stuff. I also enjoy the tedious practicing of scales, chords etc. I guess it is my form of meditation. Lately I started to study more music theory, allthough that feels closer to my work related type of activities, it gives me a lot of enjoyalbe moments.
    To me it sounds like you have to redecide on your goal of guitar playing. If the goal is becomming the best whatever, you will not succeed unless you are the very unlikely case that is built of Steve Vai material. If your goal is to play guitar for the fun of it, I think you stand a lot better chance of becomming a decent guitar player. As long as guitar playing is a fun activity, I'll continue.
    Hope you can refocus, and continue to have fun with your guitar...

  3. #3
    Well, Iīd strongly suggest to get a good teacher. Somebody who really knows how to play and who can light your fire to play again!

    As far as I understand you have a problem with your playing techniques. Well, ask yourself: Why do you wanna play at all? To impress somebody with your technique? To be "better" then some 16 year old? To be as good as Allan Holdsworth? If your answer is "Yes" I think youīre in it for the wrong reasons.

    If your answer is to simply make music, to express yourself, to get your feelings across through music then I think thereīs nothing that could stop you from doing that, even if you only know a few chords and some pentatonics. It all depends on what you do with it! If you hear music in your head you will find ways to express it. I think you mentioned Jason Becker? Well what better example could you have!

    Cheers
    TK

  4. #4
    Chicks dig me Danster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zoso
    Iíd like to know if there are other people that decided to stop playing guitar, and if thereís anyone who started to play another instrument, with good results.
    My guess is that the main problem is with your mind, not with your fingers, so I think its likely you'd have a similar problem with any other instrument. Buy a copy of Zen Guitar, and forget about the damn 16 year-olds. Music is not a competition!

  5. #5
    Resident Dio nerd. PhrygianX's Avatar
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    Actually, at one point in my 5-year time as a guitarist I did almost quit playing entirely. My saving grace was my father finding a guy in his Buddhist meetings who played guitar and understood proprioceptive/kinetisthetic practice as found in the Principles series of Jamey Andreas and most great guitar teachers' lessons (on this site Jamey has some columns) and I was taught the proper way to practice.

    To be entirely straight-forward with you, you sound a bit like a baby in this situation - a child. Anything worth having is worth working toward having. Working entails finding the proper way to play before you delve into it and then giving your entire being to that proper way of playing. The chances are great that that 16-year old playing Dream Theater flawlessly at Guitar Center is being trained properly and is working hard to make sure he's doing all of those things right; he's making sure he's paying extreme attention to his approach - the correct approach.

    My biggest advice to you is to get a good, well-versed, intelligent teacher who knows what he/she is doing. Until you are taught proper form, you're going to continually create bad habits for yourself and that inability to play as an incidental to those bad habits will be a deterrent to your playing and at some point the doing of the guitar playing will become tedious and frustrating. Basically every time you can't do what you want to do, you're suffering a little defeat. If you get defeated enough your will to do anything will be destroyed. Successes through proper practice are the best foundation for an healthy guitar playing life.

    Desire + Correct Information + Correct Practice = Playing Ability = Confidence = Increased Desire. That's pulled directly from My "The Principles of Correct Practice for Guitar" and is probably the strongest common sensical idea on the planet.

    And, ofcourse, the aforementioned desire must be there. You have to be really into music from the start. If you haven't any interest in music or any desire to play it, playing guitar is pointless. If you're in it only for an ego-boost, guitar is not the right thing for you. Go get built up and learn to fight professionally or something. an added incentive is this, if you already have the desire to play and you simply want to play well for yourself, and you get the correct information, and you practice this correct information the correct way you will get playing ability. And after that, you will get an ego-boost by default each time you play because you'll be great at it and people will fall all over themselves to give you compliments on your talents. In a nut-shell, all you have to have is the desire, correct information and practice it the correct way. Everyone loves an ego-boost, it simply cannot be the crux upon which you base your entire interest in a certain area.

    Basically what I'm saying is: Stop playing for the ego-boost. Stop playing on your own. Get a teacher. Start practicing what the teacher shows you and do it exactly how he/she shows you. Stop comparing yourself to other players and start comparing yourself to the hypothetical you that exists in your dreams for yourself as a player. One day, the two will be one-and-the-same.

    Edit:Another great thing to do is surround yourself in your life with people who are into the same music as you, preferrably a few who play the same music you play. These conversations about the artists you both love and these great jam sessions with these people and these great times you have with these people traveling to tours and seeing the bands you both love will keep you "guitaristically young", really. I've found that to be true for me. It's hard to keep a very strong interest in the guitar if you do it for too long by yourself, all alone. You should always keep those others around.
    Last edited by PhrygianX; 10-10-2005 at 10:39 PM.


  6. #6
    Modbod UKRuss's Avatar
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    The whole thing is a damn shame.

    Now stop your whining, pick up yer guitar and PLAY!

    Just kidding, I hope you sort it out, you must never give up.

  7. #7
    Latin Wedding Band Los Boleros's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zoso
    my goal was to learn how to play the chords in order to sing along them.
    Did you raise your goals since then? This is a pretty good goal for most people. Not everybody grows up to be a Stevie Ray Vahn. Some people are happy just strumming and singing fun songs. Nothing wrong with that. All you have to do is start buying song books that show the chords above the words. Even if you buy a book and only learn two songs from it. (The easiest songs in the book) Don't fret, just buy more books. If you learn two songs from each book you buy, you will soon know alot of music. A book costs half the price of a lesson and if you learn two songs, it's money well spent.
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  8. #8
    Registered User Santuzzo's Avatar
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    You sound very frustrated ....
    It's ok to be frustrated, I even tihnk it's a necessary part of being a musician, every musician will have to face frustration.
    Take a break, don't play the guitar for one week, two weeks, one month, whatever .... after a time off from the instrument you might find yourself wanting to play it again ....
    Don't think you're the only one being frustrated, you just need to learn how to deal with it, it's not easy, but you should never give up !

  9. #9
    Registered User tara_bara's Avatar
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    hey.....its sad that you feel that way after playing for so long... i know there are times where i cant even pick up my violin, whether because i just cant be bothered, or because i dont want to or just because i eventually come back to it...

    and yeah it sucks big time when you see some littlie playing ten times better then you...it really makes you feel like crap... when i was ten (i had been playing since i was five) i met a four year old who was heaps better then me...and ill never forget it...but i got over it

    i think there are times in your life when you just get run down because you arent perfect at something, because you arent as good as the annoying little kid next door, because something has just changed....

    but hopefully you will get it back...want to play again...want to pick up your guitar and just do whatever....

    chin up!!
    doctors examined my head, and found nothing.... surprise surprise!!
    -t

  10. #10
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    Thanks to all those people who replied. Thanks!! I need time to read your replies.

    Gersdal, thanks for giving your opinion

    To me it sounds like you have to redecide on your goal of guitar playing.
    Well, Iíve thought of this many times, but I always came to the conclusion that there arenít goals for me anymore, big ones, or small ones, it doesnít matter. I think that we should all find whatís the best for us, maybe Iím not inclined to play guitar, so I should try something different even if Iím not a teenager anymore. Itís better late than never!!

    If the goal is becomming the best whateverÖ
    Nooooo! Iím realistic.

    If your goal is to play guitar for the fun of it, I think you stand a lot better chance of becoming a decent guitar player.
    Donít have fun anymore. At the beginning, you say ďok, I canít play this, but if I have patience Iíll do itĒ and Iím not talking about extraterrestrial stuff (like Holdsworth, Lane, Henderson, or some Greg Howe tunes, ecc.), of course; Iím talking about those licks of fantastic players that canít not be called virtuosos (Darrel, Wylde, maybe). If you want to be a decent player, you have to reach a certain level, that I would call ďintermediateĒ, otherwise itís a waste of time and itís frustrating. Didn't want to play punk!!

    Regards
    Zoso

  11. #11
    JazzNerd gersdal's Avatar
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    As Thorstein, Iīd strongly suggest to get a good and inspiring teacher. Take a few days break (a well maybe even a week ) while you find yourself a teacher, and try to start over again. I really hope you don't give up, there to much fun in guitar playing to give it up.
    With respect to the change of instrument, I have a lot of fun playing piano in between guitar playing. My technique sucks, but its great for arranging and listening to voicings. There's no danger in testing another instrument, and your experience from guitar playing is valuable also for other instruments.

  12. #12
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    It's all about givin it one more shot.
    You might be someone who's stumbled on some bad learning
    techniques ,
    You might be someone who's got into this for the wrong reason.
    Thing is, you made the decision for whatever reason,and that's
    positive
    Maybe you've got a down on yourself,that is negative,everyone
    goes thro this ,we all think sometimes that we're not progressing ,that we're sh?t.
    But I know that most of the people on the street can't do what I do ie
    play guitar ,write songs etc so... In my mind... ,ego aside, I do somethin special ,
    most of the time I do it for me ,when other people get
    enjoyment outta it Cool.Wtf should you give up somethin
    that you enjoy.
    You've bitten into the apple , be disillusioned with somethin else ,
    this is too important,this is carrying on the legacy.
    If everyone gives up ,the music dies!!!
    So come on Man we're all hootin for ya !You can be the baddest ! Ahhh Yeah!


  13. #13
    JazzNerd gersdal's Avatar
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    Zoso, you should really read this great post by Doug.
    http://www.ibreathemusic.com/forums/...90&postcount=4

  14. #14
    Resident Dio nerd. PhrygianX's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gersdal
    Zoso, you should really read this great post by Doug.
    http://www.ibreathemusic.com/forums/...90&postcount=4
    Yeah, that was a really great post. That's what I was telling him the other night, though. It's not a matter of lacking natural talent, it's a matter of lacking the proper foundation. Technique is knowing the right things the body should be doing, and then practicing those things until the body is conditioned and until it is doing it.

    To me, this sounds like a classic case of one not learning properly, therefore not being able to play well and as a result getting tired and frustrated, but if an 18-year old can re-evaluate his playing and rather than giving up on his instrument, can go out and get the proper foundation needed through The Principles or through a great teacher, a middle-aged man can do so as well. I was just a kid then, as I still am now, and I had the presence of mind to realize it wasn't that I was bad, just that I'd approached the doing of the instrument that wrong way with no outside help or any decent reading material.

    It sounds almost like you came in here hoping we'd tell you to quit and do something else instead, and, c'mon, this is a site with some of the most dedicated and passionate guitarists on the internet today. We're not going to tell you that. Besides, you'll know if guitar is not right for you. You will have never had any passion for it in the first place, and you don't make that out to be the case at all. Quite the contrary. You say you started out passionate. The reason why you're not anymore is because your inability to play so many things due to inexperience and lack of a foundation created many miniature defeats in your life as a guitarist and your will to do anything, as I said before, will be destroyed if you suffer enough at the hands of that thing. Guitar can be an arduous task or it can be a joyous retreat from the world, depending upon how you approach learning it.

    The truth is, very few people actually have natural talent. Most of the people who can play well are those who were taught the correct way to practice so as to not develop bad habits. You're the unfortunate case that I was in that A:You're self-defeating and are an instant results kind of person which is obvious to me and B:You've created bad habits that you now must break through proper practice. It's a tough journey, but anything worth having is worth working for. Not only will you have to work to play well and practice correctly, but you'll have to work on disciplining yourself more and more and conditioning yourself to learn. Dimebag and Wylde are not entirely simple in their playing, and you shouldn't feel as though you're inferior for not being able to play them. You should chalk it up to inexperience and realize that you need to learn to play properly before such an undertaking as playing Pantera or Ozzy Osbourne or Black Label Society leads.

    Try the principles.

    www.guitarprinciples.com

    They'll change your life. Also, try to find a teacher who knows what he's doing.

    - Jonathan.
    Last edited by PhrygianX; 10-11-2005 at 10:35 PM.


  15. #15
    Trouser flapping power
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    It's a tangled web we weave..Ha??
    Music is related to feeling and emotions more than we would like to admit.

    I think about 5 years ago I went through a simmilar phase and did actually give it an undecided break and let the whole playing thing leave me alone for a while........After a reasonably long break I was just on a so called guitar turkey..and just had to pick the thing up.....I Have had to face the fact that I am probably even an average player in a forrest full of wizzards......Finnaly at 39 years I really think I would die without a couple of guitars to comfort me and a constant challenge to try and master what I'd like to play.......

    I'd also advise to try playing to a drumm beat on it's own.....You can play much more minimalised easy stuff which anyhow sound comlpete cos your grooving with the beat.......and if you have trouble letting go......Throw those worries out the window.........But yes I know that manic feeling as to why you started this thread...

    Chinn Up PAL ......Giving up is not any solution! I've tried and I don't want to anyhow.......Hopefully you not to
    Last edited by whopwooper; 10-13-2005 at 05:55 PM.

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