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Guitar lessons worth it?

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posted on May, 23 2014 @ 10:27 AM
a reply to: Shepard64
I took a guitar lesson once way back; told the teacher that I liked to play rock music and he basically told me to go home and learn the CAGED system. So I did and It helped me to memorize notes/scale positions/chord shapes and encouraged me to use the entire fret board. You may wanna give it a shot if you havent already.

Have you learned different scales?

One thing I like to do is learn the scales that my favorite musicians use.
Good luck

posted on May, 23 2014 @ 11:06 AM
I don't think formal instruction is necessary.

My strategy to break out of my creative rut was to go to a lot of open mic nights at local bars and coffee houses....

Asked the better guitarist I met there to help me. As a result I made friends, joined a band, met pretty women, and made a few bucks playing at Blues festivals and busking on the street.

edit on 23-5-2014 by olaru12 because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 23 2014 @ 11:07 AM
30 years have been playing, in little bands here and there and still teach in spare time a few times a month

I can normaly tell how many years a person has played by his vibrato and phrasing

To truely make that guitar sing takes years of bending steel and wearing out your favourite guitar till it's like
Putty in your hand and does whatever you hear and feel inside you

Anyway,have fun music is a hard long road but it's so rewarding

posted on May, 23 2014 @ 12:24 PM
I agree with some of the replies here. There is a LOT more technology and resources available when I was learning. I basically taught myself starting with chords and a chord diagram book. Nowadays if you want to learn a new song, some chowderhead has a YouTube video on how to play it right. I can't tell you how many songs I butchered from back in the day, having had to learn it from a cassette tape. Even now I see a video and go "Oh, THAT's how that is played."

The 'plateau' you are experiencing is normal. You will experience many of these and they will happen as long as you are improving your skills. It is like your fingers taking the time to learn muscle memory, and once you've achieved it, you can now learn more complex fingerings and play runs faster, change chords faster, etc.

I'd say use some online resources, or a self-administered program that lets you learn at your own pace, but nothing will substitute for PRACTICE. Play all the time, as much as you can. When I was learning, I would play for 6 or 8 hours a day sometimes. My fingers bled quite often.

And my last bit of advice that I did not follow: Learn to read music. Seriously. Do it.

And as you get better, learn other instruments as well - Piano, etc.

Oh, and learn different styles. Do not limit yourself to death metal or fingerstyle folk. You'll just pigeonhole yourself and you won't be able to play a lot of other stuff that is out there, and your musical tastes will change over time.

Followup to something olaru12 said... play with people better than you as often as you can. You will learn new things and force you to keep the bar high. That goes with anything, really, whether it is learning guitar or golf, or chess...

Heh, I keep thinking of things to add... Get a good instrument that is playable. I started out on crap and as soon as I got a better guitar, my playing improved drastically. Then when I got my first strat, fuggedaboutit. Your instrument should not be a hindrance to your progress.

edit on 23-5-2014 by ScientiaFortisDefendit because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 23 2014 @ 01:21 PM
Lesson are for those that wish to learn.......

posted on May, 23 2014 @ 02:40 PM
One of the most useful excercises I practiced was learning how to subdivide beats with a woodblock and drumsticks. Then learn the neck. Learn the position of all the natural notes on all six strings. Then you know where all of the sharps and flats fret up or one fret down. The pentatonic scale is your friend. All of the scalar modes are a pentatonic scale with two added notes. Learn the relative minors. A minor is also C major, depending on where you resolve. Learn the cycle of fifths. Just jam and get a feel. I used to practice jamming along to old Warner Bros. cartoons. Try and keep up with Sylvester chasing Tweety, I dare you. I find tone to be a key in being inspired to practice. If your practicing with a dull tone, on a poor instrument, you will lose interest. Look at it as a game. If you win, you are now a good guitarist.

posted on May, 23 2014 @ 03:07 PM
a reply to: Shepard64

They are worth it. But you need to do as much as you can on your own. Then go to different instructors to learn specifics-say one for lead, another for slide, another perhaps for theory and maybe get it. You dont need to study with them forever...just to get you going in each specialty.

Now a days, one can learn on their own...but it helps to get perspective on specifis from those who are proficient in each individual style and facet.

MS Lead, acoustic, slide and theory guitar instructor since 1974-2003

posted on May, 23 2014 @ 03:49 PM
Thank you all for your guitar knowledge. Bottom line is I have to stick with it and keep trying harder things which I think that is where my problem is. A lot of this stuff I have trouble wrapping my head around for example I know the pentatonic scale but I don't know the theory of it and how it can be applied to certain things (if that makes any sense) I feel I need a teacher for that. But anyways thank you and maybe in a few years I will post a ballad to ATS

Have a good weekend everybody
edit on 23-5-2014 by Shepard64 because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 23 2014 @ 05:15 PM
joe satriani is self taught. 'nuff said

posted on Aug, 26 2014 @ 02:21 PM

originally posted by: Shepard64
a reply to: -Thom-

hey thom thanks for your input, very helpful. I do get bored with what I do know how to play so I like the idea of switching up styles but I feel I haven't mastered what I know. I may be over thinking it, maybe I should just shut up and keep playing lol

this is no replacement for basic lessons and i am a firm believer that playing with other people will only make you better. about getting bored.
just stick with it. boredom will happen if you want to play certain songs but dont have the ability. thats what happens to a lot of people and then they stop. if you really want to play then crawl before you walk.
learn the basics. practice them... learn the basic chords and practice them. practice staying in time.

i got bored to when i started years ago. i didnt want to play green day riffs and day tripper.
i wanted to play buckethead and frank zappa and paul gilbert.
you have to work to get there.

dont make the mistake of trying to learning 20 different scales. dont make the mistake of picking up a book with 1,000 chords in it. it will just confuse you and stall you. sure, the chords in the book are technically/mathematically correct but you will never use them. the finger positions and stretches make no sense.
make sure you are in tune all the time. you need to train your ear as well.

it just depends on who you ask.
there are virtuoso like guitar players out there that really dont know any theory at all.

van halen is awesome(i can appreciate what he can do... its just not for me) and he is not mr music theory.
angus young(not a virtuoso) can play his ass off too. no theory to speak of.
then you have guys like joe pass, paul gilbert, buckethead, guthrie govan etc that are encyclopedias of music theory.

do you want to improvise? want to switch through modes? want to be able to jump on stage and go from rock to jazz? in that case yeah, you should probably learn some theory.

do you want to just jam alone or with a couple people? do you want to just feel it and have a good time and sound awesome? theen you probably dont need to worry about it.

personally, i was never content with only playing other peoples music. i needed to understand how it worked. i needed to understand what i was hearing.. i needed to know how to get the music out of my head and onto the fret board. so, i became a music theory junkie.

turns out i wind up in a work accident, shred my left hand, lose a finger and cant play anymore at all.

i dont think i can stress learning chord shapes enough. once you master the most used say, 15-20 chords then you can start to break them down. learn the root/tonal center. learn the intervals between each of the notes and how/why it makes up whatever chord you are working on.

lots of people have made a career with not really being able to play well in my opinion.
they are sloppy and they miss notes.
people like angus that live in breathe in the pentatonic scale..... meh

look at any number of 'punk' style bands and see how much they really dont know...
power chords galore. sloppiness.
i guess thats the point with that music but i am into musicianship.
for the most part if so and so does not really know their instrument then i wont listen...

i listen to a lot or music and a lot of generas but i am a bit of a snob

posted on Aug, 26 2014 @ 02:22 PM
another thing, for what it is worth.
i can think of los of virtuoso like players. theory masters that still seek out lessons.
satriani and gilbert are 2 players that are known for seeking out certain style players to grab a lesson from when they are on the road. they still take lessons and they are masters at their cradt.
for whatever thats worth

posted on Aug, 26 2014 @ 03:16 PM

originally posted by: rockoperawriter
joe satriani is self taught. 'nuff said

Not quite "nuff said"

He actually started lessons with Billy Bauer.

posted on Aug, 27 2014 @ 07:14 AM

originally posted by: Shepard64
Thank you all for your guitar knowledge. Bottom line is I have to stick with it and keep trying harder things which I think that is where my problem is. A lot of this stuff I have trouble wrapping my head around for example I know the pentatonic scale but I don't know the theory of it and how it can be applied to certain things (if that makes any sense) I feel I need a teacher for that. But anyways thank you and maybe in a few years I will post a ballad to ATS

Have a good weekend everybody

just dont over extend yourself.
i think most/all things mentioned in this thread would only be good to learn eventually.
i think since you are just starting you should pay attention to the fundamentals. learn basic chords. do fretting excercises in time.
make sure youre in tune so you can train your ear.
learn songs that are at your skill level.
youre just starting out and you already know the pentatonic scale....
thats awesome.
people have made entire careers out of just that scale.

i say bite down and try to become efficient at the things you already know before you move on to other things.
remember, its a life long quest. there are so many musical possibilities as well as technical possibilities.

another thing i have seen a lot of people do is focus most of their energy into their fretting and they forget all about their picking hand.
a lot of people get frustrated cause they want to learn so much so fast....i did it can discourage people.

i suggest practicing in tune and in time because you dont want to pick up a bad habit that you will have to relearn.

since you know the pentatonic scale thats a good base for excercises.
run the patterns up and down the neck. over and over and over again.... get your hand and fingers used to the positions.

trust me man...... practice a lot. practice at your skill you are doing this you will see man, one day, out of nowhere you will have one of those moments....a moment of clarity where something just clicks for you and you totally understand it.
it might come from a note you played or a mistake youve made. it might come from your 587th time practicing that scale....

you can send me a private message and i can answer questions for you.....

if you ask 100 people your questions you will get some of the same answers but you will also get 100 different people telling you to learn 100 different things.

youre not going to be able to play what you want to play unless you have good fundamentals. fundamentals can be boring but the more you run through them and the better you get at them things will click and you will understand it better.

lets start with this cause i dont know if you ever told us but i will go back and read again.

what kind of music do you want to play?

i ask because if you want to form a 'punk' band then its going to be a lot different than if you want to be a session jazz guy...
know what i mean,,,,,

the more you practice the more things will click for you.
at this point, in my opinion you dont need to be worrying about much of the theory end. at the early stages fundamentals are far more important.

posted on Aug, 27 2014 @ 07:20 AM
something else that really helped me was guitar pro...
i can help you get it and the tabs for it and walk you through it if you want. just message me.

there are other program like that but thats the one i used. it really help me understand things.

for example, you load up whatever song tab you want. guitar pro put the tabs up and also the notes on the musical staff. you can slow it down or speed it up to play with it. it plays the notes in midi so you can hear it.
it has all the scales so when you pull one up you can see where the notes are on the fretboard and it will play them in time so you can play with. it has a metronome built in...
tons of other things. i loved using it.

posted on Oct, 12 2014 @ 03:03 AM
a reply to: Shepard64
Hello Shepard64!
Whatever you do for guitar playing, at first you have to be attentive to the self discipline of guitar playing. Only perfect practice with self-discipline can make you go ahead in guitar playing.

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