Back a few years ago, when I got my new Fender Strat, I was so amped about the fact that I actually had this brand new guitar to play on that I set out in search for literally everything I could find to play. While most people go through a stage like this in their guitar playing, mine was different. The reason for this is because of the information I found. The way I came across this was actually by chance at my local music store. I had a chat to one of the workers there, an older guy, grey hair, heavy smoker, big mustache. Anyway, other than the fact that he looked like he had a lot of experience under his belt, something about him just told me this guy was legit.
I was told a different way of thinking about music, the guitar and ultimately my playing. Not only that, but it really made me think about just what is was I wanted to accomplish with my guitar. What is that one thing I am searching for? The answer didn't come for weeks, and I mean weeks! It frustrated the hell out of me, I had been told this information, but I had no idea what it really meant. So as the weeks past and I continued to slave away for hours on end getting sick of what I was playing something finally clicked, like I finally saw the light it was like I instantly understood everything I was told!
I thought I had learnt theory, scales, modes, chords, keys and everything else a lead guitarist should know. Then I realized the truth. . . I KNEW NOTHING! You see, when you first start playing Guitar or any other instrument, you think your knowledge and skills are placed on a pyramid, and eventually you will get to the very top and you would have mastered the Guitar or whatever you instrument may be. The reality of it all is that this concept couldn't be further from the truth.
The pyramid of knowledge does exist, but not in the way you probably think it does now. The pyramid is actually upside down. You start at the very bottom, the one little point. As you go up the pyramid you finally realize just how little you know and that is when you realize that there is no real thing as ‘mastering the guitar’ because it is completely impossible. There can be no gauge to compare blues to jazz, classical to rock. There are so many different voicings from a guitar that there is no way you can compare an acoustic guitar to an electric guitar. One you realize this, you can start to define exactly what it is that you want to be able to do on the guitar, whether that means learning a certain part of theory, finger tapping, sweeping or anything else.
Once you define what it is that you want to be able to do, you can start acting on it. Get all the information you need to be able to learn what you want to learn. And of course once you have learnt everything you set out for yourself, a new set of goals with arise, it is a never ending battle of knowledge, that is what you need to realize. The real secret to be able to play less but get better faster is to know what you want to learn! Without this, you don't know what direction you want to go so people often end up either staying in the same place or running in circles. Set out a time of day, maybe first thing in the morning or straight after work. Even if it is just 15 minutes, have the time set out so you can do it everyday without fail and start learning exactly what it is you want to learn. Stick to it and don't give up, the results will be worth it.
So on my search for playing material I found a secret that most will never know, it's crazy to think that something as simple as knowing what you want and doing a tiny bit everyday will make you the player you always wanted to be without having to slave away locking yourself in your room for hours on end. Remember the pyramid is upside down! So make it clear what you want, and go for it!
Charlie Wallace is a complete guitar nut, check out his website for a free report on how to play guitar like a pro! http://www.guitarburningspeed.com
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