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In A Rut!!!!

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(@rparker)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 5480
Topic starter  

It's my own fault too. I've done little get get out of the rut, and worse, I'm not even sure I want to get out of the rut. I've got about a few dozen songs I'm really good at just strumming away. Another few dozen I know parts of again, just strummin away. Some I do a little fancy fingering. Not much. I'm getting to the point where I think I need to bring my playing to the next level, but I'm not sure I'm ready to put the effort into it yet.

Oh, and sorry I've been away all summer. Baseball, motorcycling, new job, etc, typical things keeping me away from the keyboard. In fact, I'd be out riding now if it wasn't for a sprained ankle suffered in a game last weekend.

Roy
"I wonder if a composer ever intentionally composed a piece that was physically impossible to play and stuck it away to be found years later after his death, knowing it would forever drive perfectionist musicians crazy." - George Carlin


   
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(@u2bono269)
Noble Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 1167
 

ive been in a rut too. not the first time. i ride em out. it'll come back cos it always does.

http://www.brianbetteridge.com


   
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(@ghost)
Prominent Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 815
 

You're not alone. I didn't even pick up any of my guitars for 3 weeks last month, partly due to being on a 2 week vacation, and being in a rut. :oops: I'm still in a rut, but slowly coming out of it. Trying to keep my mind off of waiting for phone calls for a job interview.

"If I had a time machine, I'd go back and tell me to practise that bloody guitar!" -Vic Lewis

Everything is 42..... again.


   
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(@margaret)
Noble Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 1675
 

Everybody who's in a rut, raise your hand. :roll:

Yes, I shaved my pits and remembered my deodorant. :wink:

Margaret

When my mind is free, you know a melody can move me
And when I'm feelin' blue, the guitar's comin' through to soothe me ~


   
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(@rparker)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 5480
Topic starter  

I've been playing about every night. It's just that I've been avoiding finding more challenging things to learn, like anything where I gotta do some fancy fingering or picking. I bought a book on arpeggios a while back figuring it might jump start me. NOT! I couldn't tell you where it is.....well, now I can. I just hunted it down. :)

BTW, my other laying has gotten better.

Roy
"I wonder if a composer ever intentionally composed a piece that was physically impossible to play and stuck it away to be found years later after his death, knowing it would forever drive perfectionist musicians crazy." - George Carlin


   
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(@flashback)
Reputable Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 266
 

I was once told by ROBERT CRAY HIMSELF (he was playing at Myrtle Beach and I happened to be in the same Mexican Resteraunt as him.

Anyway, we were talking along and I got on the subject of practicing / learning new stuff and I mentioned being stuck (or in a rut) and Mr. Cray said this to me.

"Being stuck is a good thing, because it lets you know your ready for the next level. The longer you ride it out the more 'burst' of new learning you will get."

So remember its good your stuck for now. Cause it means that your progressing and now you need to progress on. I think what helps me the most is limiting myself to minimal improvision. The Fretboard can be a scary thing. So many sonic options. BUT. Limit your self to improvising on a singel string. Or maybe two strings but only so many frets (a "Box" per say) but dont limit yourself to your prelearned scales just learn the notes in that area and create some new exciting or unfamiliar licks. Then before you know it. You have all these new techniques you can whip out at any given time!

Hope I helped.

GN's resident learning sponge, show me a little and I will soak it up.


   
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(@lummoxx)
Trusted Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 47
 

I'm just coming out of mine (described in my "Meet & Greet" thread). I mean, I wouldn't recommend putting the guitar down, cause that is real hard to come back from, it took me winning a guitar...I hadn't thought of playing in years, nor had any intention of spending money on a guitar.

Now, I'm planning an amp purchase, and a new guitar immediately after to complement my Strat.

Ruts suck, but in my limited experience, you just gotta keep on keepin on, and just plow on through to the other side.

The alternative sucks even more...IMHO.

------
Lummoxx
-Fender Stratocaster Splatter
-Line6 GuitarPort
-Marshall Half Stack MG100HDFX/MG412 Cab
-Boss "Heavy Metal" HM-2
-Current GAS Pain: WARBEAST!


   
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(@dagwood)
Noble Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 1024
 

Check my new SIGGY.
This is from the May'05 Guitar Player with Joe Perry on the cover.

Tab says alot in this one sentence....whether you want to be a Professional Musician or just a Musician period.

I often do this in the many ruts I've had the past two years. I go back to square one. I kind of "Start Over".

Research is what I'm doing when I don't know what I'm doing. - Wernher Von Braun (1912-1977)


   
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(@ignar-hillstrom)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 5349
 

I'm a simpleton with stuff like this. If I don't feel like playing I don't play. If I wouldn't feel like playing for a long time I'd find another hobby. If I don't feel like learning anything new I won't learn anything new. If I feel like learning something new I learn something new.

So basically:

1) Find something you like to learn.
2) Learn it.

If you got to step #2 but aren't really trying then apparantly you don't like to learn whatever you picked and you should go back to step #1.


   
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(@u2bono269)
Noble Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 1167
 

for me, i really do find a few days away from guitar strings works wonders. it's like i get a time to reboot myself, so when i pick it up again, whatever was keeping me from feeling it melts away and i can play like normal again. just this morning i spent a few hours standing on a picnic table in a deserted park playing till my fingertips hurt. it wasnt totally deserted, my friend was there with me and we sang. and a few old people randomly walking through. and 2 kids. but that's not the point. i came up with some pretty cool soudning licks on that table. i wouldnt have been able to a few days ago, because i would have stumbled through some chords and gotten discouraged. but after a lil break, my confidence came back.

http://www.brianbetteridge.com


   
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(@ghost)
Prominent Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 815
 

I end up dweeling on what I'm trying to accomplish during my times away from guitar. Usually spending time listening to the song(s) over and over again. Hmm... actually it's similar to Arjen's method, but it works. I'm still suffering from a short attention span when it comes to music theory though. :roll:

A rut is a rut is a rut.... not always.

"If I had a time machine, I'd go back and tell me to practise that bloody guitar!" -Vic Lewis

Everything is 42..... again.


   
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(@rparker)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 5480
Topic starter  

Well, i decided to use the book that I previously mentioned. Each night as I pick up the guitar, I will do 5 minutes of arpeggios. It reminds me a lot about doing scales. Maybe I should do those instead. :)

At any rate, all this is in an effort to start learning how to pick notes in addition to my (cough cough) wonderful strumming skills. There's a lot of cool stuff out there to play that I just have not touched because I lack the "picking" skills.

Roy
"I wonder if a composer ever intentionally composed a piece that was physically impossible to play and stuck it away to be found years later after his death, knowing it would forever drive perfectionist musicians crazy." - George Carlin


   
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(@jwishart77)
Estimable Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 91
 

I think if you're really in a rut you should consider getting lessons. If you're short on cash just take 3 or 4 even. In those first lessons a new teacher will immediately be able to point out some stuff for you to work on and give you some good exercises etc. Might just be the kickstart your brain needs to get going again.


   
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(@rparker)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 5480
Topic starter  

I'm not, how do you say it, a good student. I do have plans of action though. The arpeggio thing. Also, gonna start singing to songs. (First victim is Thru and Thru by the Stones), and the first song that I'm going to learn to pick and make the strings talk will be Brothers In Arms by Dire Straits.

Heck, I'm even considering firing up my keef-o-caster for a go at Romeo and Juliet after I've done those two. Kind of puts it together. Picking, singing and strumming. Sure, it's not accoustic, but what the heck. Only me, the family and the dogs will know. :)

Roy
"I wonder if a composer ever intentionally composed a piece that was physically impossible to play and stuck it away to be found years later after his death, knowing it would forever drive perfectionist musicians crazy." - George Carlin


   
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(@rparker)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 5480
Topic starter  

Update time: I haven't messed arround with Arpeggios much, but I have been engrossed in singing & playing at the same time. My dogs hate it, but it's been quite a hoot for me. I've been practicing Thru and Thru, Happy (check out dhodges lesson, buy a tele and leave it in G where it should be), Sister Morphine and Mother mostly, but a few others as well. Ready for the big time, I am!!

Roy
"I wonder if a composer ever intentionally composed a piece that was physically impossible to play and stuck it away to be found years later after his death, knowing it would forever drive perfectionist musicians crazy." - George Carlin


   
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