Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

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Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby conchmariner on Mon Jan 05, 2009 2:18 pm

Lots on the list for me, but one of the tougher ones is Jeff Watson's solo on Don't Tell Me You Love Me where he's alternate picking F sharp minor, E add 9 and D arpeggios in sixteenth notes at 180 bpm on the first and second strings.

Also Steve Morse's Pride of the Farm is a pretty ridiculous line that I just can't seem to nail anywhere near tempo (152 bpm).

Adapting bebop sax lines for guitar is pretty tough too.
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Re: Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby PRSdork on Tue Jan 06, 2009 11:30 pm

For me, the technical albatross around my neck is "the Flight of the Bumblebee" I just keep plugging away at it at about half tempo.


I subscribe to the "Billionth Time Theory," practice something a billion times and you will get better at it...


I'm gonna go practice. :jam:
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Re: Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby conchmariner on Wed Jan 07, 2009 1:21 pm

PRSdork wrote:I subscribe to the "Billionth Time Theory," practice something a billion times and you will get better at it...


For me it seems to be the trillionth time theory, and I'm not even sure that's enough :oops:
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Re: Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby ed_shred on Thu Jan 08, 2009 2:43 am

This is where it gets interesting, is improving simply a matter of time and repetition?

I'm not so sure it is...
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Re: Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby conchmariner on Thu Jan 08, 2009 7:30 pm

ed_shred wrote:This is where it gets interesting, is improving simply a matter of time and repetition?

I'm not so sure it is...


Musically, perhaps not. Jaco Pastorious supposedly never practiced the same thing twice.
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Re: Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby PRSdork on Thu Jan 08, 2009 9:52 pm

If by the use of the word "improving" we're talking about the development of technique then yes, time and repetition do contribute greatly...
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Re: Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby ed_shred on Fri Jan 09, 2009 3:45 am

If by the use of the word "improving" we're talking about the development of technique then yes, time and repetition do contribute greatly...


Right, but there are many great technicians out there who never do anything interesting artistically, and there are many great artists who are average technicians.

Personally, I think the 'technician trap' is one of the major obstacles on the way to doing something interesting. By the technician trap, I mean 'if only I improve my technique, I'll become a great/good/better guitarist/musician/artist'. Getting out of that mindset is easier said than done.

Not saying technique is irrelevant, but if I had to choose between technique and creativity, I'd take creativity.

Depends what you want of course.
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Re: Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby PRSdork on Fri Jan 09, 2009 7:09 am

ed_shred wrote:
If by the use of the word "improving" we're talking about the development of technique then yes, time and repetition do contribute greatly...


Right, but there are many great technicians out there who never do anything interesting artistically, and there are many great artists who are average technicians.

Personally, I think the 'technician trap' is one of the major obstacles on the way to doing something interesting. By the technician trap, I mean 'if only I improve my technique, I'll become a great/good/better guitarist/musician/artist'. Getting out of that mindset is easier said than done.

Not saying technique is irrelevant, but if I had to choose between technique and creativity, I'd take creativity.

Depends what you want of course.



I hear you, it's easy to lose sight of the forest for all the trees. I've known guys who became so obsessed with speed, they forgot the overall goal. But I'd just as soon not have to choose between technique and creativity.
I like having chops, I like being able to play whatever I think of. I've had to pull myself back from the edge of the technique cliff once or twice and remind myself of the beauty of one perfectly placed note.
At the same time, I became very tired during the nineties of the anti-technique attitude. I heard so many guys use the "I play for the song, not the solo" mantra and to me it's a copout. I got tired of the emotion vs. technique attitude, I don't believe the two have to be mutually exclusive...
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Re: Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby ed_shred on Fri Jan 09, 2009 7:38 am

Right, maybe the idea of a choice between technique and creativity is an artificial example.

Also, another way of looking at it is the sort of martial arts or Zen approach, where endless repetition of technique practice leads to technical perfection, which means that when the inspiration comes, the technical ability is there on standby to effortlessly give it effect.

Someone on here quotes Jimmy Vaughn in his signature, who said 'all you need is tone, taste, and attitude'. I was thinking that you need to add technique to that equation, with no technique at all you can't do anything.
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Re: Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby axym on Wed Jan 21, 2009 6:39 pm

Certain things where I know all the notes but have a technical barrier to playing it anywhere near up to tempo:

Triumph - Petite Etude (2nd half, the fast half)
Van Halen - Meanstreet (solo, 2nd half, the 14th position stuff)
Van Halen - Hot for Teacher (solo, 14th position blues scale licks - I just can't nail the timing)
Eric Johnson - Cliffs of Dover (all the fast parts)
Van Halen - Ice Cream Man (solo, opening lick)

Time and repetition definitely do help.
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Re: Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby 85db on Tue Jan 27, 2009 4:15 pm

When the guitar playing becomes an obsessive fretboard-polishing sports, the music ceases. I've seen players with the chops but without the music or a good taste for it. Their most common symptom is inability to play slow or making the slow parts interesting and engaging. When forced to play slow, their playing always lacks the feeling.

But you do need BOTH the musicality and the technique. Without the technique you won't be able to express. Without the music you'll have nothing to express. So if the technique is lacking, there's nothing wrong with taking a year to improve it. The only issue with repetion is repeating the wrong technique. It's crucial to study the techniques of other players, understanding each techniques pros and cons, and figuring out what works the best for your hands and style of music.

Interestingly, while the technique is something you can definitely improve, the taste for music doesn't seem to be...
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Re: Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby spacetrucker on Fri Jan 30, 2009 4:33 am

The bass for:

Grand funk railroads
"People Lets stop the war"


Its Not that its too Fast or Too much of a distance, I just can't seem to figure it out, the exact notes and timing are tough. I think I'm trying too hard at it, Or thinking its more complicated than it sounds. Playing by ear can make learning things easier if you already have moderate technique and a decent ear for relative pitch.

Anyone else tend to over think in learning new material?
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Re: Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby greengod on Tue Feb 17, 2009 9:38 pm

There's a lot of stuff I'd like to play but I don't have the chops to play it as it should. I'd like to play for istance some fluid octave lines à la Wes Montgomery but my speed is limitated. I think that music, as every art, need dedication. A writer has to know the history of the world literature, a painter has to know the important painters and master from the past and so on. A guitarist need to listen to music for hours a day and play for a large amount of time every day, to study and practice during the day and jam with other musicians at night. Without time and dedication you can't do anything. Inspiration and chops are the two sides of the same coin. Obviously, if you don't know some rules you can have a sensation of freedom of expression but you have to be a genius to create without knowing the rules of the game. I mean, Hendrix or John Lennon didn't know anything about musical theory and succeded to create some wonderful music notwithstanding this issue. I don't think it can happen to everybody.
"Without music, life would be a mistake" (F. Nietzsche).

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Re: Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby Vortexion on Tue Feb 17, 2009 9:55 pm

About 80% of everything Bruce Thomas has ever played for Elvis Costello completely defeats me. Stone the crows, that guy's good. :not_worthy:
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Re: Stuff You'd Like To Play But Just Can't Seem To Nail

Postby phlizmo on Wed Mar 25, 2009 1:27 am

derek trucks singing vibrato.. George Harrisons slide technique..
Anything by jimmy bryant..
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