im sick of guitar
I think ab was "venting" more than "whining"...so why not let him do so, since he's caused no harm to any of us here, and one post like that doesn't take away his standing as a forum colleague.
Just keep at it man. Get some lessons if you can. Guitar has a steep learning curve for some of us.
“The hardest thing in life is to know which bridge to cross and which to burn” - David Russell (Scottish classical Guitarist. b.1942)
I can't say anything much different than others before me, but maybe take a break and see what happens. I don't think there's anything wrong with venting; who better than your guitar buds here? I haven't been playing long but I have found guitar can be very complex and I'm not even past learning my chords yet. I get a little anxietous when people start posting about stuff I haven't even heard of yet and think oh my God what have I started lol! But I have to remember, that will come later - just worry about what you're learning NOW. We have to be patient with ourselves and our instrument - neither are perfect. I think finding a teacher can be helpful and find one that is familiar with the music you listen to and want to play. Even if guitar isn't for you, I agree that we all have some kind of musical inclination and should pursue it, whatever it may be. :)
I also think ab is just venting his frustrations and looking for some encouragement ( which we all need a boost of from time to time )
It can be a frustrating business learning guitar and one that like anything in life takes hard work and practice if you're gonna get better. I'm playing just under a year and many,many times have felt like throwing the guitar out the window
It didn't help at times that I was looking at videos on you tube of 10 and 11 year olds, only playing three weeks belting out the tunes Jimi style (maybe an exaggeration but you know what I mean)
Over the last couple of months I've realised with the help of my teacher that this is a waste of time and now my philosophy is that's it's not a race and that every time I pick up the guitar I'm that tiny,tiny,tiny bit better than I was before even though I might not think it. :D
I am sick of practicing for hours every day and not improving
i am sick of listening to all this shred crap that has like one memorable melodic line in the whole song
i am sick of practicing the same steve morse song over and over and constantly failing
i am sick of not being able to alternate pick for poop
i give up
i should have just played piano
Step back, and focus on basics. If you're truly not improving, then you've not learned a fundamental technique. If you're just not improving as fast as you want to, welcome to the club.
You're into metal, try listening to some classical. For the frustrated black metal artist, I'd recommend some Bruckner for his moody, eerie melodies, J. S. Bach for the mathematical precision of his arpeggiated inventions.
I like the work of Enrico Morricone too, the Title themes to all of the spaghetti westerns are masterpieces of unconventional instrumentation and mood evocation.
Playing guitar and never playing for others is like studying medicine and never working in a clinic.
sounds like it is time to change the strings.
that always does it for me.
sounds simple, but it is much deeper than that.
Purge. Put down your guitar. Do other things. Check back with the guitar in a month or two or three or six. Same with this site. You might come back fresh and ready to go; you might not. There's a lot more to life and music than playing guitar.
-=tension & release=-
My answer is going to be a little different than the others.
Quitters never win, and winners never quit
Hey, that may sound mean, but that's how it is. If you are a person that gets frustrated when something is difficult, then guitar is absolutely the worst instrument you could play. Yeah, a 3 year old kid can hit the keys on the piano, but it's difficult to fret the guitar cleanly and pick well without making lots of mistakes. You gotta be a Bad A$$ to play guitar.
Seriously, never pick a fight with a good guitar player, these are people who never quit.
Quit trying to copy these super noodlers. Play within your own abilities. Just keep playing and you will get better guaranteed.
But first you have to quit feeling sorry for yourself. Sorry, but that's how it is.
If you know something better than Rock and Roll, I'd like to hear it - Jerry Lee Lewis
As has been said already, take a break. I think sooner than later, you will be thinking about playing again. Once that happens, start learning a different song in a different genre.
Best to you in which ever direction you go. And always know, you can always come back here.
Thanks for the encouragement guys. That was really all I wanted.
I would never quit, I love playing and when I am not playing I feel empty and am thinking about playing.
I try to put in about 3-4 hrs min practice time a day, but I'll be bumping that up soon.
I just felt really down last night, the Morse thing was NOT clicking, and all I was playing was just the same stuff over and over for like 3 hrs. It got me really frustrated. I just opened up the theory book and studied that then watched a couple of my guitar heroes play on videos on youtube.
The good news is----that helped a lot.
I got reinspired again really quickly and best part was I actually noticed some improvement with the Morse thing when I played it today (i could actually string together the two arpeggios that were owning my face).
Also, I probably shouldn't have said I practice for hours and still suck, that's not true really. I try to learn at least one new thing every day (even if it is just one lick), but I am at a point in my playing now where it is going to just take months of hard work to get where I want to be. I just can't physically play some of the passages I want to, but I know it's not a question of my skill, it's just a question of needing to practice.
I probably shouldn't have come on here to "whine" I was just really bummed out. I'd never quit guitar and I shouldn't have said that. It's the one constant thing in my life that will always be there and I can always improve on no matter how shitty everything else is going.
Anyway, I'll end my rant.
I don't know how long you've been playing, but we sometimes make the mistake of trying to play songs that we're not ready for. NoteBoat had a very wise comment when he said -"If you're practicing and not improving, you're not doing it right." There are times when we're "noodling" and calling it practice. You might want to set "reasonable" goals for your practice. It's not as much fun in the beginning, but the results are worth it.
Don't quit before the miracle happens. Good luck.
Yeah this is good advice.
The song I am trying isn't out of my range, but it is sort of difficult (for me anyway).
I have been breaking it up in chunks and working on it on and off for months. And during that time I have been working on a lot of other songs and techniques.
It just gets frustrating you know? You can practice and practice and even if you are doing everything right it can still take months, even years to really nail a passage correctly.
Ah well, it's the reward and the punishment of the instrument I guess.
I didn't mean to get down on you when I said "whining", but you should probably adjust your expectations....
It's going to take you 'months' to get where you want to be???
I've been playing a long time. My first paid gig was about 32 years ago, and I've been teaching guitar professionally for about 29 years now. It's still going to take me YEARS to get where I want to be!
The guitar is among the easiest instruments to learn. I know - I play a half dozen non-fretted instruments (a couple of them quite well), and the guitar is the only instrument where you can actually be playing a song within an hour or so of starting out. But the guitar is also one of the most difficult instruments to truly master - a piano has one middle C, we have five.... while we have a simple layout for learning 'patterns', we also have a non-linear one for applying most musical concepts. The deeper you go, the deeper it gets. So you're right, it's the one thing you can always improve.
Be in it for the long haul, and you'll do ok. Expect to be a shredder overnight, and you'll only be frustrated.
Do it for the joy of doing it, and you'll love it forever.
Guitar teacher offering lessons in Plainfield IL
Great post by NoteBoat as always. :D
And I wasn't trying to be mean, but I do not coddle my own kids when they complain about something being difficult. Like NoteBoat, I have been playing about 35 years. I played in bands as a teen (I stank). I got older, got married, had kids, the same thing probably all of you will do in the coming years. I didn't have time or money to play in bands, but I practiced nearly every single day. And after all these years I am not anywhere as good as I would like to be. But I made up my mind the very first day I played guitar that I was going to play it as long as I can, hopefully they'll find my cold dead body grasping my guitar. :D
I don't know a whole lot, but this I know: If you do anything long enough, you are going to get good at it. My son played basketball in High School and I used to help him out at practice. He would shoot free throws and I would chase them for him. His first year he averaged about 75 out of 100 shots. By his 4th year he was shooting around 93 out of 100 baskets average.
But even I improved, I would shoot 100 baskets too. The first year I would average around 40 baskets, which is really terrible. But by the 4th year my average was over 75 baskets out of 100. It is all practice.
There are better ways to practice that will get you better results. Play with a metronome and start slow at a speed you can play comfortably without mistakes. Slowly build speed. I do this. I have never been fast but I have been practicing speed drills for the last several years. I am no Yngwie by any stretch of the imagination, but I am getting pretty fast and my accuracy is much better.
Maybe it's personality, but I like things that are challanging. If guitar were easy it would be boring to me. I love the fact that it is difficult, I love the fact there is always something new to learn. I would never give up guitar now, I have had too much fun trying to learn to play this darn thing to ever stop now. Guitar is my old friend. Sometimes friends give you grief. :D
If you know something better than Rock and Roll, I'd like to hear it - Jerry Lee Lewis
Do you have some songs that you just plain love to play? Even just to strum on the acoustic?
I'm working on a lot of pieces lately that are pretty tough for me (Johnny B. Goode, Little Wing, Don't Think Twice It's Alright, Stack-O-Lee Blues, Sweet Child O' Mine), as well as doing original compositions and recordings, so there's a lot of potential to get frustrated. But if I'm frustrated by any of that, I can always pull out one of my originals that I know, or something like "You've Got To Hide Your Love Away" or "Something" and just strum to it. It makes me smile and love to play, and that helps a lot.
That seems like a lot of time to put in practicing each day. Maybe split that into two blocks so you'll be more focused. I don't know what your musical goals are but none of us will play as well as we'd like. Practice at a slow tempo rather than going fast making mistakes and literally learning to make those mistakes.
Think about whe you first got your guitar. You wanted to play a song day one. After a month you could. After another month you have more under your belt. It never ends.
"Nothing...can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts."
There's a lot of good advice been given already, so I'm not about to give any more. Seems you've turned the corner, you were just having one of those days where nothing goes right - we all have them. I've been practising to a backing track for a while - Dan's Jam, in the collaboration forum. I thought it was about time I got better at lead, and this'd give me a chance to improvise. I've been putting off recording it - something would keep cropping up. Last night I was really in the zone - but I had to play very softly, grandson asleep in the room next to this one, and I couldn't record it. Determined to get it done today - but could I play those little runs and fills I was playing last night? Could I heck. I managed to get something done, but I'm not happy with it.
The point I'm making, some days you've got it, some days you haven't - only mediocrity is always at its best. Even the greats have off-days - we probably wouldn't notice, but they'd KNOW.....
But I have found, if I work at something hard enough, it will click eventually....before I joined GN, I wouldn't have been able to play songs like "Something" or "All Right Now".....now I can play them, work them out for myself, hell I can even play the solos and the bass-lines to those two songs. I'm currently working on "Nantucket Sleighride" - I've got the bassline down, got the rhythm guitar, I've just got to nail the lead lines. Couple of years ago, I wouldn't have known where to start - now it all seems natural.
So stick at it....the only place reward comes before work is in the dictionary.
:D :D :D
"Sometimes the beauty of music can help us all find strength to deal with all the curves life can throw us." (D. Hodge.)