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If you were not a guitar player...

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 Nuno
(@nuno)
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What instrument would you play? Piano? Horns? Violin? Theremin? There are many different choices!

Bish, Notes, bass players and other multi-instrumentalists: You could freely adapt the question to the drums, saxophone or your main instrument or answer it directly... if you are here, you are also guitar players, isn't? :D


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(@noteboat)
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I think choosing an instrument that's right for you can be broken down and analyzed. These are are some of the things I'd think about:

1. Does the range speak to you? I've always been drawn to the lower end of the mid range for some reason. Maybe because my voice is low. Instruments that match what I hear in my head, pitch-wise, are guitar, cello, tenor sax, trombone, bassoon. And I think this is really a central thing - if what comes out of your axe doesn't match what's in your imagination, you won't be exploring the possibilities as much.

2. Can you physically do it, and does it feel good to play? I suck at brass instruments. I have to work really hard to get a decent lip buzz... I guess my embouchure wasn't built to do it (this doesn't deter me from trying - I keep a G bugle in the closet at the music school and pull it out after hours). Double reeds make my teeth feel funny.

3. Is it readily available? Most of us wouldn't consider something like a viola de gamba. If you don't know anybody who plays an instrument, you'll have one extra hurdle to overcome: instruction won't be available (either formal or through observing players and 'teaching yourself'.)

4. Can you easily understand and/or apply how it works? Some instruments are very logical, like the piano - move right, get higher pitches. Some aren't - a brass instrument gets the harmonic series with each valve combination or slide position. Think about playing a tune using only natural harmonics and you'll have an idea what the trumpet player faces. In this respect, the guitar is easy - you learn a chord by memorizing where your fingers go; you don't actually have to understand what notes are involved, or where else you could play it - or even what a chord is. In fact, of all the instruments I've tried, the guitar is about the easiest to get started on.

5. Will it keep you challenged? This is what I love about the guitar. Most pitches are available in more than one place, and we can use different fingerings to get them. It's incredibly flexible. I'm constantly thinking through other ways to do things.

Thinking over those questions, I think I'd be a cellist if I didn't play guitar.

Guitar teacher offering lessons in Plainfield IL


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(@slejhamer)
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Drums. That was my first choice when I was a youngster. My parents refused. Wouldn't even let me bang wooden spoons on the pots and pans.

"Everybody got to elevate from the norm."


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(@minotaur)
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Joined: 13 years ago
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Keyboards. I still want to learn. If I could find a small inexpensive (if such a thing exists) tabletop keyboard, I would go for it. There are some of "my" songs that were written and played on keyboards that I am trying to adapt to guitar (with varying degrees of success). I think it would be fun to try them both ways.

Oh yeah, and I always wanted to learn to play sitar. But I hear it's a bear to learn and play.

It is difficult to answer when one does not understand the question.


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(@boxboy)
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Theremin!
Nah, piano. I spent a few years trying to teach myself but didn't get very far. I plan to go back to it in the coming months.
:)

Don


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(@notes_norton)
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Sax is my main axe and I consider the wind synth and flute extensions of that.

Guitar would be my second choice if I was not able to play sax or wind synth.

Actually, I wish I had gotten serious about the guitar 10 or 20 years ago. I didn't realize how much fun it is to play back when I was just banging barre chords when there wasn't a sax part for the song the band was playing.

After guitar, my third choice would be bass. I played bass for a year or so when saxes were out of fashion, and I liked it very much.

Notes ♫

Bob "Notes" Norton

Owner, Norton Music http://www.nortonmusic.com Add-on Styles for Band-in-a-Box and Microsoft SongSmith

The Sophisticats http://www.s-cats.com >^. .^< >^. .^<


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 cnev
(@cnev)
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Personally I don't think I would have the desire to play any other instrument except the guitar. OK I'll admit that part of the reason I started playing because I wanted to be that cool dude rockin out on stage.

But now if it wasn't guitar I'd want to become a singer I just feel for me that would be a better way to express myself, unfortunately I am not a singer and I'm really not a believer that this can be taught. You can improve a bit but I think the foundation you need to be born with.

"It's all about stickin it to the man!"
It's a long way to the top if you want to rock n roll!


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(@alangreen)
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Joined: 19 years ago
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Tough call.

I've always wanted to be able to draw; so if it wasn't guitar, maybe I'd have picked up a paintbrush or something

"Be good at what you can do" - Fingerbanger"
I have always felt that it is better to do what is beautiful than what is 'right'" - Eliot Fisk
Wedding music and guitar lessons in Essex. Listen at: http://www.rollmopmusic.co.uk


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(@elecktrablue)
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If I didn't play guitar, bass, mandolin and dulcimer....... I think I would want to play the violin and the flute.

..· ´¨¨)) -:¦:-
¸.·´ .·´¨¨))
((¸¸.·´ .·´
-:¦:- ((¸¸.·´ -:¦:- Elecktrablue -:¦:-

"Don't wanna ride no shootin' star. Just wanna play on the rhythm guitar." Emmylou Harris, "Rhythm Guitar" from "The Ballad of Sally Rose"


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(@vic-lewis-vl)
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Tough one. Ever since I was a little kid and first saw the Beatles on TV, I've wanted to play guitar. I can't actually think of another instrument I'd pick as my FIRST instrument - I dabble with harmonica and keyboards, and I can usually pick up a bassline. Couldn't imagine playing any of those and not not playing guitar, though.

I'd probably concentrate more on singing and writing, I think.

:D :D :D

Vic

"Sometimes the beauty of music can help us all find strength to deal with all the curves life can throw us." (D. Hodge.)


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(@kent_eh)
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Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 1885
 

If I were not a guitar player, I wonder what I'd be
If I were not a guitar player, a ......

A roadie I would be!
Push that box, lift those lights
send her to the tour bus...

Sorry, couldn't help it.
Memories of Scout camp

I wrapped a newspaper ’round my head
So I looked like I was deep


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 Bish
(@bish)
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After being a gigging drummer for 30 years, I wish I'd have taken up the flute. Much less to carry.

Bish

"I play live as playing dead is harder than it sounds!"


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(@smokindog)
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My pick would be keyboards. Lately I have been having trouble with nerve damage to my left hand. I can only play about 15-20 minuets at a time. I would also consider Steel Guitar. I have a lap steel and it don't seem to hurt my wrist much. Another choice for me would be a mountain dulcimer

My Youtube Page
http://www.youtube.com/user/smokindog
http://www.soundclick.com/smokindogandthebluezers

http://www.soundclick.com/guitarforumjams


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(@notes_norton)
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After being a gigging drummer for 30 years, I wish I'd have taken up the flute. Much less to carry.
I went on the road for years as a sax player. Went to the gig with a tenor sax in one hand, an alto sax in the other, and a flute tucked under my arm.

Then I was finished with my stuff so it was time to help schlepp the PA, the Hammond B3 organ (all 400+ pounds of it), amplifiers, and even the drummers stuff.

In all the rock bands I've been in, it's been that way. If I were in a symphony orchestra or pit band, it would be different. I'd play trumpet, flute or violin. Small, light weight and easy to carry.

Now I play in a duo with my wife so we schlepp the PA, her synth, her guitar, my tenor, my flute, my guitar, my wind synth, various sound modules for our synths, stands, accessories, repair parts and so on. But I think about those people paying money to go to the gym to lift heavy things, and I realize I'm getting the benefit of weight training on the job.

After thinking about this for a few days, I wish I had been given piano lessons from the time I was 3 years old. While I play some keyboards, I always feel like a hack when I'm around really good pianists. Starting keyboards late in life, and then only applying what is necessary for too many years has left me with the knowledge that I'll never be a concert pianist, or even a Keith Emerson.

Actually, I can see myself playing any instrument at all except for the bagpipes. The fact that the drone is intentionally out of tune just bugs my ears. ;-)

But then you know why bagpipe players usually are marching -- to get away from the noise (rim shot please!)

Insights, incites and a bit of silliness by Notes ♫

Bob "Notes" Norton

Owner, Norton Music http://www.nortonmusic.com Add-on Styles for Band-in-a-Box and Microsoft SongSmith

The Sophisticats http://www.s-cats.com >^. .^< >^. .^<


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(@rparker)
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Joined: 18 years ago
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Piano for me. Actually have an electric keyboard thing in a closet. Picked it up, tried it out and quickly switched to guitar.

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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