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Son bought me a strat for my bday...

starting from sqare one...

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#21 2220020

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Posted 07 August 2013 - 12:52 AM

Thanks for the replies...so tell me what's the best route to getting better??? Not that I ever aspire to greatness or anything, just adequacy...lessons??? Playing along to tracks??? Learning to read music and tabs??? How important do you think music theory is???

 

Learn all the "open" chords (a good list is here: http://en.wikibooks....tar/Open_Chords). Once you've learned the chords well enough that you don't have refer to the diagrams, start practicing changing from chord to chord as smoothly as you can. Once you're pretty good at that, turn off the lights and practice in the dark.


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#22 fast eddie

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Posted 07 August 2013 - 01:23 AM

practice in the dark, I like that...yeah, I've been playin' a funky nylon string for years, learned my open chords, at least the basics, need to expand on all the variations some, and I can bang out bar chords, as well...playin' with others always seemed to help me learn new stuff...I was just wondering what you players felt was the most helpful, other than just putting in hours...I've never messed with diff tunings, either...


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#23 2220020

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Posted 07 August 2013 - 03:19 AM

practice in the dark, I like that...yeah, I've been playin' a funky nylon string for years, learned my open chords, at least the basics, need to expand on all the variations some, and I can bang out bar chords, as well...playin' with others always seemed to help me learn new stuff...I was just wondering what you players felt was the most helpful, other than just putting in hours...I've never messed with diff tunings, either...

 

Just putting in the hours will be the most helpful. Sitting with other players can be very helpful, but that might be kinda' hard at this point in your playing ability.


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#24 Slim

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Posted 08 August 2013 - 04:08 PM

You certainly don't want to mess with different tunings until you have an instinctive feel for the standard tuning. I learned to play mainly by amusing myself. I remember practicing chord changes early on, sitting there doing G G G G G G G C C C C G G G G D D D D. It's a good idea.

 

Actually it was more like G G G G G G G          C C C C              G G G G            D D D D back then.

 

Also trying to play along to some record you like is a good idea. I used to do that with old Shadows records.

 

Just watched that and realised I should have played an F instead of a Dm all those times

facepalm.jpg
 



#25 Slim

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Posted 08 August 2013 - 04:30 PM

.. which actually goes to show what a nice resource YouTube is for leaner guitar players. There are quite a few free lessons on there.

 

Why not give this a try -

 



#26 grep

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Posted 08 August 2013 - 06:00 PM

You certainly don't want to mess with different tunings until you have an instinctive feel for the standard tuning. I learned to play mainly by amusing myself. I remember practicing chord changes early on, sitting there doing G G G G G G G C C C C G G G G D D D D. It's a good idea.

 

Actually it was more like G G G G G G G          C C C C              G G G G            D D D D back then.

 

I've been trying to do this, to some extent, with chords on the bass. Slow going because of the heavy strings... but it feels good to start to hear some results.

 

Playing along to a record, or another player - like a drummer is key, once one gets to that stage.

 

Just becasue one can play well in isolation, playing along to an established song (keeping time, remembering the parts) or a human - is something else entirely. It's work, but it's worth it. I've a long, long way to go. But I see an improvment, and every little improvement says that the practice is working... so I keep going.



#27 2220020

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Posted 08 August 2013 - 07:33 PM

Just becasue one can play well in isolation, playing along to an established song (keeping time, remembering the parts) or a human - is something else entirely.

 

So true. I see a lot of people who sound amazing while they're playing along with the record...it's another beast entirely to do it live, without a net.


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#28 fast eddie

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Posted 09 August 2013 - 02:56 AM

yeah, I've got cord changes down pretty well, having played accoustic for 30yrs or so, can bang out some decent songs, I'm no good with leads, tho i know the scales somewhat, I just need to get better at the intricacies like all the myriad cord variations, changing keys, diff.strums and all the cool techniques better players use, hammering, muting, harmonics, shit like that...and just knowing how all those knobs/switches can make my guitar sound like I want...yeah, I know...it's a journey...and it's damn fun, too!!!


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#29 fenderjazz

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Posted 09 August 2013 - 03:32 AM

I guess what I would suggest is playing power chords of rock songs that you like. Use your ear to find where on the neck to play the chords. This will develop your ear which will take you further than theory for now.
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#30 gomer

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 07:36 AM

you can get a regular strat for about $450 now a days if you look. huge difference in sound quality compared to squire etc.as for playing just listen and experiment,just focus on the tone for awhile and dont worry about jeff beck or hendrix .experiment and make sounds that you like to hear.


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#31 fenderjazz

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 04:39 PM

yeah, I've got cord changes down pretty well, having played accoustic for 30yrs or so, can bang out some decent songs, I'm no good with leads, tho i know the scales somewhat, I just need to get better at the intricacies like all the myriad cord variations, changing keys, diff.strums and all the cool techniques better players use, hammering, muting, harmonics, shit like that...and just knowing how all those knobs/switches can make my guitar sound like I want...yeah, I know...it's a journey...and it's damn fun, too!!!

 

You've definitely come to the right place here.  Sounds aren't hard to get.  For a player like yourself, primarily rhythm guitarist, knock the mids down on the amp.  Play with the bass and treble at 12 or 3 o'clock and the mids on about 9 o'clock.  If there is a master volume and a gain or "drive" volume, boost the gain or drive volume and turn the master volume to whatever volume you want.  That will make distortion.  Reduce the gain or drive volume and increase the master volume.  That will make a clean sound.  The difference between a rhythmn and lead sound is mids mostly.  Turn the mids up to play a lead.

 

As for the guitar, just play with the volume up all the way.  Play with the 5-way switch in the second to rightmost position.  That will engage the middle and rear pickups together and makes for a nice traditional strat sound that's suitable for most things.  Go all the way right and you've got just the rear pickup and it will be more bright and trebley.  That's good for lead work with distortion from the amp, and also good for country sounds when clean.  Put the 5-way switch all the way to the leftmost position, and bring your tone down on the guitar, volume up.  With distortion, that will give you a bluesy sound, called "woman tone".  Give those things a try.  Write down the numbers/knob positions when you've got a sound you want to remember how to get.  Eventually it's all second nature.


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#32 Slim

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:52 PM

Ah yes. The following video isn't going to be much help for this thread since the controls are different on a Gibson, but here's Eric Clapton talking about it - I believe he invented "woman tone", in fact - in 1968:

 

 

That position on the 5-way is an interesting one because the Strat originally had a three way pickup switch - one position for each pickup. Hendrix found a way to combine two pickups by jamming the switch inbetween positions - I dare say other players had discovered that before him - but it wasn't until 1977 that Fender made this unintended feature official with a five way switch. Those "inbetween" tones seem such a familiar, characteristic feature of the Strat that it's odd to think that the guitar only came with a three way switch for the first 23 years of its production. Knopfler would never have sounded the same playing through just one pickup.

If I remember correctly there was a Strat with push-button pickup switches at one time, so you could combine the bass and treble pickups, or even have them all on - something you can't do with a 5-way.



#33 Moving Target

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 08:24 PM

 How important do you think music theory is???

 

Well, I'm a mere four-stringer, and we can get by without it.... but when i started really practicing scales and arpeggios and chord tones and learning which chords went with which note in the major and minor scales and why, my playing improved leaps and bounds.



#34 fast eddie

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 11:30 PM

The wife and I went to a Willie Nelson show last nite, she'd been wanting to see him for years...it was great fun and inspired me to pick up the ol' nylon string when I got home...Willie's 80yrs old, but he still plays the only guitar in his band, at least on this tour...he plays pretty primitive, but makes that old beat up guitar sound pretty fine...openers The Wild Feathers were pretty good, too...kinda reminicient of the Black Crows...


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