Jump to content


Please note: You can easily log in to MPN using your Facebook account!

All about shredding?


Sauntman

Recommended Posts

Having recently gotten back into guitar, I noticed that many of the young aspiring guitarists are primarily concerned with being able to "shred." To be the next Steve Vai, Yngwie Malmsteen, Joe Satriani and the like. For some reason, none of these guys have moved me with their music. They may have great technique and speed, but their music is not inspirational to me. I would prefer a solo such as Clapton's solo for "Sunshine of Your Love" that is slow, but has great feel to it and is pleasing to the ear. Are young guitarists missing the point of what rock & roll is about, or am I just getting old? :(
Link to comment
Share on other sites



  • Replies 36
  • Created
  • Last Reply

I don't think you can compare guitarists like Clapton to Yngwie. They both have feeling in thier own ways. I get sick of speed demons too, there are many of them now. In the 80's there weren't that many. Fewer guys could do it. Now because of the internet, more people have access to material to develop shred skills so there are more out there.

 

Guys like Holdsworth have brought shred to almost an unattainable level. Though technique is always important in order to further your expression/emotion, I always prefer players who don't always feel the need to show off how fast they are.

 

I do think technique is very important for a player to be expressive. I will never be one of those guys who thinks someone who plays fast doesn't have emotion or feeling. Speed is just one more tool of expression.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think the only truth is to maximize what gifts you were given. Be the best "you" that you can be, at whatever, whether it's fingerstyle, just strumming chords and singing, playing chords like Wes Montgomery, blues like B.B., shredding, whatever. It's all good...

 

Well, perhaps it's not all good. Not if you're trying to be something you're not. And therein lies the work. If you were born to be the next Chet Atkins, but you want to be S.R.V., you're cheating yourself.

 

Maximize your strengths. Minimize your limitations. That's the trick.

 

Not to say you shouldn't work on improving your limitations, but don't overlook a chance to strengthen a "strength" by overburdening yourself with trying to overcome a limitation.

"Cisco Kid, was a friend of mine"
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I guess my musical tastes have changed as I have grown older (pushing 40 here). When I first picked up the guitar at age 18, I wanted to be the next Randy Rhodes or Eddie Van Halen. I still like these guys, but now classic rock and blues influenced rock seem to appeal to me more than before.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

sauntman, I feel the same way!

 

I'm 18 and every time I see someone around my age or maybe a little older playing guitar, thats all I hear. I'll admit, when i first started (probably at age 15 or so) playing that's what I wanted to do after seeing my brother play EVH stuff. So I got to looking through his movie collection when he was away at college and I came across his movie of Cream's Farewell concert and I was blown away. Randy Rhoads and Eddie took that back seat and clapton was who I wanted to play like. Then I started listening to blues, which led to many different styles. Now metal's the last thing I listen to...Dont get me wrong, I still love a lot of it though.

 

Oh and I went to the local bar the other night for an open mic and got on stage. one of the singers asked me if I knew johnny be good. I said "only the begining lick." He says "sweet, that's all we need." So we go into it and its my time for a solo. Not to be bragging or anything but when i took it, everyones eyes were on me. After the song some guy comes up and shakes my hand and asks me my name. He and everyone else was blown away by how young I was. That was an uplifting night

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey, at least their not saying things like "soloing is for mindless wankers". Geez, the whole anti-virtuosic thing made listening to guitar players kinda boring for a while. If they start off shredding, chances are they'll develop past it into something new and exciting. HWO knows, at least they won't be pounding out the same over-amped, scooped-mid power chord crap as the last generation of guitarists seems to think is great.

Always remember that you�re unique. Just like everyone else.

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by J J:

Not to be bragging or anything but when i took it, everyones eyes were on me. After the song some guy comes up and shakes my hand and asks me my name. He and everyone else was blown away by how young I was. That was an uplifting night

Keep playin' the blues, young man

 

Check out the stuff that came out on Chess record label and other cats

 

Listen to T-Bone Walker, Son Seals, Lightnin' Hopkins,

Otis Rush, Albert King, Freddie King, albert Collins, Roy Buchanan, Johnnie Winter.

 

Most definitely listen to Mike Bloomfield on Paul Butterfield's stuff-Aw man !!!

Also him on Al Kooper's super session

 

Elvin Bishop's stuff w/Paul Butterfield rules, too

 

The list goes on, yet time & funds are limited; but that is a good range of different cats to get into

 

Maybe some of the cats that are older than me can be more specific on which albums to get by those artists?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I started out as a shredder, GP's Rusty Cooley was one of my teachers. Then at Berklee, I got my ass totally whipped by a blues guy, in public. I played nothing but blues for about the next 4 years. Since then I have come to a nice middle ground, where I have some chops, but it's not all that I do. Remember that they're kids, and kids want to show off.
www.myspace.com/christondre
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by Picker:

Hey, at least their not saying things like "soloing is for mindless wankers". Geez, the whole anti-virtuosic thing made listening to guitar players kinda boring for a while. If they start off shredding, chances are they'll develop past it into something new and exciting. HWO knows, at least they won't be pounding out the same over-amped, scooped-mid power chord crap as the last generation of guitarists seems to think is great.

+1 on that! http://www.websmileys.com/sm/cool/269.gif
www.myspace.com/christondre
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ya I got pretty sick of some people dogmatically labeling everyome who ever took a solo as a wanker-what a bunch of crap. There was more than a little of `those who can`t do, label` besides.

But a little shredding goes a long way. A whole CD is already too much for me unless the songs are as good as the technique. The thing is, so many of those guys were more interesting when they were a part of an accomplished band, Steve Vai/Whitesnake may not be your cup musically but Slip of the Tongue had some good songs and Vai`s playing enhanced them in the right way. Steve Morse/Deep Purple haven`t gotten any airplay and I don`t have the CD, don`t know what it sounds like.

Same old surprises, brand new cliches-

 

Skipsounds on Soundclick:

www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemusic.cfm?bandid=602491

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think Vai was the end of rock shredding. Right when he was peaking Eric Johnson got noticed with his instrumental, then SRV died. I dunno I can't remember the exact chronology but after that Satch had a couple boring instrumentals and that was it. Don't get me wrong, Satch has some cool stuff. I just didn't care for his radio friendly material as much maybe.

 

To me as I have said a million times. My fav shredder will always be EVH because he has the most emotion and feeling of all the shredders combined. He also has a GREAT tone!! Old EVH!! Shred is cool when someone uses it to forward an idea musically. Also playing fast isn't all about the speed, it is how cool you play it. Your tone, pick attack, vibrato, string noise etc.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well we`re in a song-oriented time. I also find that in my own songs, to really explore extended speedy stuff I have to write a music platform with that idea in mind or it sounds forced. There were a lot of solo-as-arrangement pieces in the 80s and early 90s that solved the issue that way-the solo WAS the piece.

Same old surprises, brand new cliches-

 

Skipsounds on Soundclick:

www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemusic.cfm?bandid=602491

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Shred is just a buzzword anyways. Alot of people these days use it as an excuse NOT to learn to play everything they can. Of course it is inappropriate to play as fast as you can every song, but there are times when a burst of speed is called for musically. Its hard to deny that guitar players are obsessed with speed, I don't here most musicians of other instruments talking about velocity very much.

 

If you like slower expressive passages like Clapton can play, by all means play them. But don't use that as an alibi for not playing fast when it is called for. Actually Clapton can play pretty quick when he needs to, its just that he sounds so good slow. Part of the whole coordination of both hands is part of the technique of guitar, playing fast is almost a byproduct of that technique in my opinion. I don't really work on speed as a goal, but just playing alot makes it so I can play faster.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think Stevie Ray was the answer to shred guitar, and the answer was "not like that, like this!" Instead of a 240 second (or longer) "weedely weedely weedely waaaaaa konkacachonca" solos that started at one level and stayed there seamlessly with no real dynamics, we heard a guitar playing short to moderate pithy phrases, and really making an effort to say something from his soul rather than from motor memory. Stevie was the "anti-shredder", and I thank God for him. He was the best thing to happen to my playing, and guitar in general in a very long time. Wish he was till around.

Always remember that you�re unique. Just like everyone else.

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I like a little daylight in between my notes once in a while.

 

"Shred" simply implies playing a lot of notes in a short time and sustaining that for an entire song. So what? Sometimes you need a fast passage in a song to say something...but, it has to have a place and a reason for being there. It has to be in context. Just playing a bunch of notes as fast as you can says absolutely nothing to me except "Look at me! I can play a lot of notes real fast." Big deal. Anybody can learn to do that. Just because you can play fast doesn't mean that you can make anybody FEEL anything with your playing....except maybe bored.

"And so I definitely, when I have a daughter, I have a lot of good advice for her."

~Paris Hilton

 

BWAAAHAAAHAAHAAA!!!

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by Picker:

... a 240 second (or longer) "weedely weedely weedely waaaaaa konkacachonca" solos that started at one level and stayed there seamlessly with no real dynamics...

Picker, that sounds like one of my Graphic Design teachers. When Herb Lubalin died he said, "Great. Now type can breath again!"
Raise your children and spoil your grandchildren. Spoil your children and raise your grandchildren.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by flagshipmile:

I don't think we are in a 'songwriting' time. Good playing and good chord arrangements play into good songs no doubt. I don't hear that on the radio. I hear boring cliches and crappy guitarists. Of course on public radio there are alternatives but that isn't what I mean.

If you`re referring to my comment you used a totally different term. ` Songwriting time` would imply that songwriters-the quality of good songs-would be at the center of what makes a hit song.That`s what you said, not what I said. In fact we`re still in the midst of sampling hit songs from however many years ago to create new songs. The orientation in this time is toward producers and music `constructionists` if anything. What I said is that these times are song-oriented, meaning that displays of musicianship are judged rigorously-including on this forum-by whether they contribute to the song they are included in.If they don`t move the song forward they get the dreaded `wanker` label. I finally heard a song recently by Disturbed-an extremely heavy band that I happen to like-that had-gasp-a guitar solo, perhaps the first I`ve heard by that band. Guess what, the world didn`t end and they guy only really ripped it in the last bar.

Same old surprises, brand new cliches-

 

Skipsounds on Soundclick:

www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemusic.cfm?bandid=602491

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have to point out that the reason alot of fast technical players did well was because they played on cool songs.

shred for the sake of itself is boring unless the player has a strong concept of melody and dynamics.

when they study music as much as work on finger excercises and the like they become interesting.

 

players come along that are great and then all the others miss what makes them great and focus on the wrong things.

Van Halen was one hell of an exciting BAND with a great song writing guitarplayer.

but what did everyone copy? tapping!

don't bother looking at the whole picture.

:rolleyes:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Van Halen was one hell of an exciting BAND with a great song writing guitarplayer.

but what did everyone copy? tapping!

don't bother looking at the whole picture.

 

I agree that Eddie got undersold on the big picture.

 

I think Eddie is a riff meister arranger, not a songwriter though.

 

eddie's best attributes are his rythmn playing and dynamics. His lead playing is a reflection of this.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you`re referring to my comment you used a totally different term. ` Songwriting time` would imply that songwriters-the quality of good songs-would be at the center of what makes a hit song.That`s what you said, not what I said. In fact we`re still in the midst of sampling hit songs from however many years ago to create new songs. The orientation in this time is toward producers and music `constructionists` if anything. What I said is that these times are song-oriented, meaning that displays of musicianship are judged rigorously-including on this forum-by whether they contribute to the song they are included in.If they don`t move the song forward they get the dreaded `wanker` label. I finally heard a song recently by Disturbed-an extremely heavy band that I happen to like-that had-gasp-a guitar solo, perhaps the first I`ve heard by that band. Guess what, the world didn`t end and they guy only really ripped it in the last bar.
Ok good point, understood.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't hot flashy technique once in a while.. it's just when there doesn't seem to be anything ELSE happening!

 

(There is also such a thing as having fine technique and not being blatant about it.)

 

I tend to think that the only people interested in hot shredding on guitar these days are other guitar players.. it's just been done so many times before that the novelty has worn off!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by flagshipmile:

I get sick of speed demons too, there are many of them now. In the 80's there weren't that many. Fewer guys could do it. Now because of the internet, more people have access to material to develop shred skills so there are more out there.

???? :eek:

 

I started playing in '87 and it was all about shred. IMHO, the average guitarist in the late 80s was much more advanced than the average player now. Van Halen, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Vai, Satriani, Vivian Campbell, George Lynch, Vernon Reid, Paul Gilbert, Jake E. Lee, Malmsteen, Dave Chastain, Marty Friedman, Slash, Jason Becker, etc. were the idols of the day. All very talented musicians. I definitely agree that there was an over-emphasis on technique but there were a lot of great players around. If you saw some cover band playing in a bar somewhere, you could expect the guitarist to shred, even if the music sucked.

 

The internet wasn't available then but there was plenty of instructional material. Books, magazines, tapes, those foot-operated cassette decks that allowed you to slow down passages (didn't they cost like $400 or something?), etc. Kids came home from high school and practiced scales. Or they skipped school and practiced. Even the bad players could at least play fast.

 

Grunge and Nu-Metal really lowered the talent bar. In the early/mid 90s I played in a few bands with guys who were just a couple of years younger than me. They had all started playing guitar when "Nevermind" came out and none of them knew what the fuck they were doing. They never had any desire to become better musicians and they never practiced.

 

And while there seems to be more interest in technique recently, a lot of younger players still look to hacks like Mike Mushok (does he even play chords with more than two notes?) and Tremonti for inspiration.

 

I genuinely hope that younger kids starting out take an interest in becoming well-versed on their instruments. Your technique is your vocabulary and if you don't have a good vocabulary, you'll have the same boring, shallow conversations over and over again.

"You never can vouch for your own consciousness." - Norman Mailer
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am usually pretty impressed intially with some shredders like this guy Robert Burton - maybe it is a little envy as my fat little fingers cannot do sweeps and arpeggios real well, although I have developed my picking technique to simulate a little shred by being able to fairly consistently do 16ths, 32nds, and sometimes a little faster with my right hand, but my left has not really caught up yet.

 

I aggree that shred was popular in the 80's and that perhaps with the internet it is now experiencing a little resurgence.

 

There can be some feel with shred, but it is harder to indentify because to happens so fast. I think that Steve Vai is good exampe of someone who can shred and play with feeling - he really pulls the guitar for all its worth at times and you can hear it, but in the sea of shredders he is the exception IMO.

Lava Man

www.lavacable.com

Your One-Stop Custom Cable Shop

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...