Learn From the Pros and Play Better
We all know that “practice makes perfect” and all that, but what if you are stuck and don’t feel like you are getting anywhere…?
I once learned a very important thing called “The Compound Effect” and it works with allmost anything in life, and in perticullar with leaning to play guitar.
Learn to master the easy things first, all the small steps. When you master them, compound those easy steps into one thing you master, and then ‘upgrade your skills’ by setting new skills to master. These new skills will then compound to a new set of skill, and so on…
Always keep learning, and learn from someone who are better than you, and someone you can actually learn from, someone like Joe Satriani or Eddie Van Halen.
“After three and a half decades of publication, we’re bound to have published—in print or online—thousands of useful tips for guitarists.
This brief story collects only six of them! Still, we hope you’ll get something out of this initial offering—happy in the knowledge that there’s so much more coming down the pike in the near future.
So grab your guitar and let’s get started!
1. Learn Something New Every Day
Find one guitar-related thing a day that you didn’t know already and learn it—and play it. It can be a riff, a lick, a chord, a scale, an exercise, a song, a melody, an altered tuning, a strum pattern, the part of a song you know all the riffs to but never bothered to learn the “boring” connecting transition sections of, whatever.
The discipline of seeking out, playing and internalizing a new piece of guitar knowledge on a daily basis will feed your subconscious musical instincts, add new concepts to your muscle memory and ultimately aid in your ability to express yourself and perform effortlessly on the guitar.
Make this a part of your day and you’ll find that as you continue on your journey, one thing will become two, then three, and on and on until you are devouring as much as you can absorb on the guitar, every day!
The major scale provides the building blocks of many of the chords and scales you’ll come across as you make your way through your career.
By understanding the structure of the major scale, we can then begin to harmonize it in various ways to form triads, seventh chords and extended chords, as well as understand the modes that accompany them. The major scale has seven intervals: the root, major second, major third, perfect fourth, perfect fifth, major sixth and major seventh. The intervallic distance between each interval forms the pattern W-W-H-W-W-W-H, where W is whole step and H is a half step.
3. See the C and Be the B
4. Run Through Every Chord You Know
This tip is from Joe Satriani: It seems silly, but if your fingers don’t go to a certain place it’s because you haven’t challenged them. One day, when I was a teenager, I decided that I was going to learn every chord in a Joe Pass chord book I had. I worked on it every day; there’s no substitute for bonehead repetition. The great thing is, once you get used to this exercise, you’ll literally force your fingers to go from chord to chord to chord—chords that have no relation to each other—and great things can come from that.
5. Learn Your Favorite Guitar Solos Verbatim
6. Track Your Progress