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have you ever wondered how/when your 'idols' aquired their skill?

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posted on Jul, 17 2007 @ 12:30 PM
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sorry for yet another zappa thread but now that i know there are quite a few musicians/guitarists here, i thought we could talk it out.

i have been reading through ALL the books, interviews, magazine scans i have about zappa, looking for some sort of timeline on how he got so good, and i can not come up with anything.

let me use 3 examples of the 'typical' schedule of a 'virtuoso' type musician.
steve vai
EVH
zakk wylde

all of them are pretty much known for their 12 hour a day practice schedules.
zaak has stated he would sleep all day in school, then practice all night and repeat the next day. short variations with vai and EVH but it was 12 hour practice schedules or so for YEARS.
now, i have been trying to establish where/when/how frank got his skill.

the general consensus is(and i wanted to get your inputs on this) is that he was just a 'natural'...whatever 'it' was, he had 'it'.

now, that is not to say he never practiced anything BUT, he did not start on guitar untill he was 18. so, he got into guitar in 58, after dabbling in the drums. after hughschool, he took ONE SEMESTER of music at a junior college. around this time, he rented his first jazzmaster. now, accorsing to him, this ONE semester gave him a foundation.
ok, se between the ages of 18-25, frank got INSANELY good. what i want to know is how.when.
in his life, he composed 471 original songs of all generas. he started composing in 53. in other words, he was writing music before he could even hear what it sounded like.

he has stated in several interviews and his real frank zappa book that he didn't really practice. in that 7 year period, he said he put the guitar away for almost a year and didn't touch it at all.
he said that the only time he 'practices' is when they are rehearsing for the road. other than that, he is composing(either using the guitar or piano)...he was known to work 20 or so hours a day for his entire adult life.
freak out came out in 65 and from there, we got 1-2 albums a year on average, some being boxed sets for the rest of his life.

WHEN did he have time to get this good?
this is also not to mention that he was a multi instrumentalist.
he played drums, bass(on several of his compositions), bouziki, piano, vibes, marimba, etc...

when i talk to certain people the concensus is, he is just 'one of those' people. he could sit down at virtually any instrument and play it.
he used methods that people before him never used. effects on certain wind instruments and such.


i know that most guitarists think of themselves as a guitarist but he always said he was a composer. he likened it to creating air sculptures and moving air molecules around.

weather you are a fan or not, i don't think it can be denied by anyone that he was hot doodoo when it came to the guitar. he discovered many a musician that has gone onto virtuosity. his fellow musicians(and musicians alive today) know what is up when it comes to the complexity of his music.

how does a person with 1 semester of community college and roughly 7 years of unknown guitar practice, get so good? how does this person write music that is even too hard for conservatory trained musicians? how does this person compose 471 originals over a 30 year period?

i can't wrap my head around it...

what do you think?
do some people just have 'it'?




posted on Jul, 17 2007 @ 12:35 PM
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Well I think certain people are born with a natural talent for doing that stuff, and along with alot of practice they get amazingly good at it.

And others who may not have been born with natural talent can still get amazingly good with just lots and lots of practice.

Anything can come with practice.



posted on Jul, 17 2007 @ 12:49 PM
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and people like him that are born with 'it' and do NOT practice a lot?

thoughts?


Cug

posted on Jul, 17 2007 @ 06:40 PM
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Originally posted by Boondock78

how does a person with 1 semester of community college and roughly 7 years of unknown guitar practice, get so good? how does this person write music that is even too hard for conservatory trained musicians? how does this person compose 471 originals over a 30 year period?


I think it all boils down to the fact he invented his own style of music. He didn't have to learn the rules he just made them up as he went along.



posted on Jul, 23 2007 @ 06:16 AM
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I was wondering about this subject just the other day. I have heard some of the worlds top musicians practice 8 or 9 hours a day I know the Russian Pianist Evander Horrowitz practiced 4 hours a day up into his 80's. I often can only practice guitar about two hours a day if I'm lucky and wonder what I could achieve if I could practice more. Not only that but perform more. I think performing 1 hour does more for your playing than 3 hours of practice. A music teacher once said you can only do so much practicing, you have to get in a band and play somewhere to advance passed a certain level.



posted on Jul, 27 2007 @ 10:27 AM
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yes.
there is absolutely no substitute for playing with other musicians....that is something i don't have the luxery of doing



posted on Jul, 27 2007 @ 02:18 PM
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Interesting thread. I would say a good percentage of whom many associate with being "the best of the best" had a natural predisposition for a given talent and fed that talent through a practice routine. I believe there are quite a few talented individuals who never realized the fruition of this because they did not practice enough to develop it further. However, there are many people (musicians) who some people consider "talented" that I wouldn't consider anything more a strenuous line of tiring cliches and licks. For example, I think a good majority of musicians generally associated with or called "shredders" display very little talent, but more what the end result would be if you were locked in a closet with only an Eddie Van Halen record to keep you company.



posted on Jul, 27 2007 @ 05:20 PM
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Originally posted by Jazzerman
Interesting thread. I would say a good percentage of whom many associate with being "the best of the best" had a natural predisposition for a given talent and fed that talent through a practice routine. I believe there are quite a few talented individuals who never realized the fruition of this because they did not practice enough to develop it further. However, there are many people (musicians) who some people consider "talented" that I wouldn't consider anything more a strenuous line of tiring cliches and licks. For example, I think a good majority of musicians generally associated with or called "shredders" display very little talent, but more what the end result would be if you were locked in a closet with only an Eddie Van Halen record to keep you company.




What do you recomend practicing sir? The way I see it is there is only so many things you can do with 12 notes. I have found it doesn't matter where you start, it matters where you land when upon occasion you should make a run here and there to fill in between lyrics. You can only bend a note up to the 1st, 3rd, 5th or 6th note so many ways. Nearly every song in country music has a 3rd note bend on the end of it. And all the endings in jazz tend to have a minor 9 7 on the end. Not all of them but enough of them do. In other words some of the licks in all music sooner or later all start to sound the same because there are only so many possibilitys.

Obviously the more you practice the better your gonna get. You can never practice too much. What is it they say, " miss one day of practice and I can tell it, miss two days and another musican can tell it, Miss 3 days and everyone will notice. Practice makes perfect or does it? Someone said, " practice doesn't make perfect, perfect practice makes perfect. If I could ever figure out what perfect is maybe I'll get there.




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