7 tips to Get You Out of that Rut playing guitar

Friday, August 19, 2011

I have heard so many people tell me that they feel that they are stuck in a rut with their playing guitar and I don't know what to do to get out of it.

In this post I want to give you 7 tips to get from that furrow so many people seem to end up in.

Before going into these suggestions, let me just say that I am in these furrows too. I know how it can be frustrating, and I think that all players eventually find that I'm in a rut of one form or another. Knowing how to get out of these grooves can be a determining factor in whether or not to keep advancing as guitarist.

1. start listening to different styles of music

Sometimes, when we want to learn a particular style of music, we dive in to one style completely. ?This is a good thing, but at some point you may feel tired and unmotivated by learning and listening to the same things all the time. ?I read that Jimi Hendrix was a big fan of classical music, and I think it really shows in his songs. ?I'm really well-versed with lots of guitar parts, but things just seem to flow together as an orchestra of guitars. ?If you're learning guitar blues, try listening to some country, classical, or pop. You can find inspiration through these genres that will give you some new ideas for playing the blues.

2. Take some lessons

It may seem obvious, but a simple way to get from a rut is to take some guitar lessons, private lessons or find on the internet. ?Just watch someone play and explain that something can unlock so much. ?Each has a unique way of playing, and seeing someone else's point of view that you value, can really help to see things in a different light. ? As a teacher of guitar, I can usually hear someone play and give their recommendations on how to get the most out of their reproduction. ?Sometimes you may think you know everything, but having something explained in a new and different way can sometimes open a whole new way of seeing the guitar.

3. stop playing guitar for a week

If you're learning new things, constantly practicing and playing hours per day, there will come a point in time where you just get overloaded and cannot move forward. ?At one point I think it's a good idea to just stop playing for a while and go out and enjoy life. ?Those life experiences and emotions that come from living are what fuel the music in my opinion.

Without emotion in your music, what is good for? ?Music should not to amaze, is supposed to make you feel something. ?Even with great solos, not only the best ones are awesome, but they evoke emotions to listeners. ?Those who are just technically brilliant doesn't seem to involve emotional connection, that the listener is usually looking for. ?The most legendary guitarists, everyone talks about always lived very interesting lives. ?Without these life experiences would not think as legendary status. Clapton, Hendrix, Page and Beck lived lives very interesting which helped, in my opinion the amazing quality of material that they put out.

4. try to learn vocal melodies on guitar

If you're caught in that rut pentatonic and feel only end up playing the same licks around that time, then you should try to start learning the vocal melodies on guitar. ?Amazing vocals have such phrasing. ?Learning these melodies on guitar, you will start to think differently the licks that you are playing. ?Yes it will be difficult, but it will be worth it. ?Will give you a new approach when playing guitar that will make your game more melodic. ?Check out this post to learn more about playing vocal licks. ?Playing voice melodies

5. go to see a live

I can't tell you how many times I came out of a show that was amazing and became truly inspired. ?Seeing a great band with great melodies and musicality can light a fire under you to get out there and create something amazing! ?Go out and see a show this weekend.

6. start learning different instrument

About 7 years ago, I started to want to learn some different tools. ?Sure, I could play a little low, but I played bass guitar for the most part. ?I decided to start learning some piano. ?In particular, blues piano. ?I spent many hours listening to parts of the piano, studying books and practice. ?While I'm not the greatest piano player, I can play some. I even took a lesson in bass from an amazing bass player named Russ Rodgers to GIT in Atlanta. ?He really changed the way I looked and played bass. ?Doing these 2 things, in my opinion also opened my mind as the guitar could work and gave me a new look at how I played guitar and what was possible.

I also tried to incorporate things that I learned about these new tools to play my guitar. ?I'm not saying that you have to learn a lot of new tools, but can be useful if you picked up another tool and started to learn a little about it. ?I think it will help the understanding of the guitar, learning about other tools as well. ?No doubt it will help you understand the music that much more.

7. start learning a different style of guitar tunings

This is a great for me. ?Long ago I decided to learn the slide guitar, and I'm so glad I did that. ?In these days when it arrives in a rut with blues guitar playing, just start playing slide again and I feel inspired and vice versa. ?I also have a Dobro to turn to if both of these types of guitars are not inspiring me.

I also believe that learning new tunings can open a whole landscape unseen unknown territory. ?My Dobro is tuned to Open G, my SG is tuned and open my Strat is tuned to Eb and other tuning my guitars are standard. ?Having so many different tunings available keeps fresh for me. ?Each sounds differently and has different things you can do with them.

Sometimes I think guitarists can get into a mode where the guitar licks and tuning standards can become so well known, it can be difficult to see anything new, because it is so familiar. Throw some tunings in the mix and things start to become unknown territory. ?This is good! ?Some of the best things that I usually have about the incident because I didn't know exactly what I was going to do.

A pianist friend Jason Fuller once told me that sometimes people play better when things are a bit uncertain of where they are going and just trying to be at this time. ?The uncertainty and research can create an exciting blend of tension and excitement that can grab the listener. ?I think that Duane Allman called this hittin' the note. ?Granted this is not always the case, but being aware of this phenomenon helps me to think.

These are just my opinions, but I think some of the things that will work for you, if you try them. ?All of them might not work for you, but these are things that I feel has helped me to get out of ruts playing guitar.

I am currently in a rut? ?What measures are asked to get out of it?

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Nishtha said...

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