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A new member/guitarist to the forum.


Psalms-of-the-Dying

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Good evening,

 

As stated in this thread's topic, I am indeed a new member, and on a side note, an aspiring metal guitarist. I am extremely passionate about the instrument and furthering my proficiency over it entirely, so far I've only been playing for a year and a half, and only really starting to play it as I should for the past six months due to complications with a half-wit, money-grubbing instructor whom caused me to lag behind...

 

My main goal is to play lead in a black/death metal band sometime in the distant future (as well as redefining the genre altogether) after I head to college for music theory and composition next year. I've a multitude of influences: Marty Friedman, Vinnie Moore, Greg Howe, Jason Becker, Yngwie Malmsteen, Paul Gilbert, Paul Allender, Alexi Laiho, Kerry King, and the list ostensibly sallys forth for an eternity.

 

Now, seeing as my curt, slightly informative introduction has now come to an end, I must plague someone -whoever is willing to answer- with some questions:

 

1. I am having difficulty with my right hand when playing scales, it seems as if my picking is lagging behind and not staying up to speed with my left hand as it frets. Is a metronome the saviour and the ultimate conclusion to end this problem?

 

2. I have a rather large and lambent collection of scales from my last instructor (not the half-wit curtly mentioned above) that include exotic scales, pentatonics, Dorian, Ionian, Aeolian, Phyrgian, et cetera et cetera. I am attempting to practice them all the best I can, but would it be prudent to start off with a certain scale(s)?

 

3. Last question: I currently practice two hours a day - and have been for a while - but it is starting to seem as if two hours is veritably insufficient. Is two hours enough or should I extend the time period?

 

 

Any help shall be greatly appreciated.

"The best political weapon is the weapon of terror. Cruelty commands respect. Men may hate us, but we don't ask for their love; only for their fear." -Heinrich Himmler
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Metronome is key. Practice pentatonics, learn different positions of pentatonics. They are the coolest scales to use in rock or metal in my opinion. Especially when you mix in chromatics. There are tons of ways to play them too.

 

As for other scales I say work on all of them. At least memorize them so you can practice them on your own time. I couldn't tell you what mode I am in when I play but I know all of them.

 

2 hours of practice to start with is ALOT of time. If you can stay completely focused on whatever you work on for 2 hours, I see no reason why you won't catapult to the next level. The more improvement you see the more you will want to practice just like working out.

 

Playing with other people is important too. You should find some people to jam with when you go to school. Listening to others is key. It makes you a musician.

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Originally posted by flagshipmile:

Metronome is key. Practice pentatonics, learn different positions of pentatonics. They are the coolest scales to use in rock or metal in my opinion. Especially when you mix in chromatics. There are tons of ways to play them too.

 

As for other scales I say work on all of them. At least memorize them so you can practice them on your own time. I couldn't tell you what mode I am in when I play but I know all of them.

 

2 hours of practice to start with is ALOT of time. If you can stay completely focused on whatever you work on for 2 hours, I see no reason why you won't catapult to the next level. The more improvement you see the more you will want to practice just like working out.

 

Playing with other people is important too. You should find some people to jam with when you go to school. Listening to others is key. It makes you a musician.

Splendid, my thanks for replying. It's a shame that I never asked about a metronome up until now, for I could have been a step further if I had known about it a few months of yore.

 

Pentatonics are great, yes, as one person said, "They are like ripples upon water." or something along that context.

"The best political weapon is the weapon of terror. Cruelty commands respect. Men may hate us, but we don't ask for their love; only for their fear." -Heinrich Himmler
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1. A metronome is always a good practice tool. However, it typically helps to focus on only one goal at a time during an exercise e.g. concentrate on the scale pattern you're learning or concentrate on your picking. I believe that practicing picking exercises that isolate the different mechanics involved would be of serious help (inside picking, outside picking, alternate picking on one string, etc.)

 

2. Any scale can be good; however, the minor scale (aeolian) is predominant in metal music and it could be wise to start with that one. Whichever scale you decide upon, try and play over a backing track using chords from that scale so you can develop your improvisation/composition skills at the same time.

 

Whenever you learn a song from one of your heroes/models, try and see what scale is used and learn how it was applied and then use it to develop your own melodies/solos with it.

 

3. Practice time is dependant on the individual's capacity and goals. Only focused practice will get you further. Also keep in mind that any sustained pain can lead to injury so don't force it too far. Progress will come but some things just take time to develop. So there's no answer on that one: only you can tell.

 

Good luck and welcome to the forum!

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Originally posted by Darklava:

Welcome to the forum...looks like your on the right path, the next step is to sell your soul http://www.workjoke.com/satan.gif

Been there, done that. The buyer was music, in conjuction with the Devil.
"The best political weapon is the weapon of terror. Cruelty commands respect. Men may hate us, but we don't ask for their love; only for their fear." -Heinrich Himmler
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Originally posted by Rhino Madness:

1. A metronome is always a good practice tool. However, it typically helps to focus on only one goal at a time during an exercise e.g. concentrate on the scale pattern you're learning or concentrate on your picking. I believe that practicing picking exercises that isolate the different mechanics involved would be of serious help (inside picking, outside picking, alternate picking on one string, etc.)

 

2. Any scale can be good; however, the minor scale (aeolian) is predominant in metal music and it could be wise to start with that one. Whichever scale you decide upon, try and play over a backing track using chords from that scale so you can develop your improvisation/composition skills at the same time.

 

Whenever you learn a song from one of your heroes/models, try and see what scale is used and learn how it was applied and then use it to develop your own melodies/solos with it.

 

3. Practice time is dependant on the individual's capacity and goals. Only focused practice will get you further. Also keep in mind that any sustained pain can lead to injury so don't force it too far. Progress will come but some things just take time to develop. So there's no answer on that one: only you can tell.

 

Good luck and welcome to the forum!

Will do, will do. I always make sure to warm up with 5-7 speed excercises and I use them for up to an hour before I finally begin to practice anything else.
"The best political weapon is the weapon of terror. Cruelty commands respect. Men may hate us, but we don't ask for their love; only for their fear." -Heinrich Himmler
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Greetings and welcome.

Redefining the genre eh? well I would certainly break that goal down into smaller steps!

Also, you want to play metal but don`t ignore chords/harmonies, they are your friend.

There is a roll call thread-probably on the next page by now-specifically for introducing yourself. You can post a profile there, and read about other members too.

Same old surprises, brand new cliches-

 

Skipsounds on Soundclick:

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

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Welcome to the forum Psalms. I guess in the genre of music you are trying to play, speed is important. But remember to always stay coordinated between your hands. Speed will come in time but it shouldn't be your main goal. Learn music and techniques to make you be a complete guitarist. Work on tones and dynamics. A metronome can help but playing along with a drummer and other musicians will help immeasurably more.

 

Scales are a good thing to practice to learn the building blocks of melody and harmony. But they aren't music in themselves. I've heard lots of guitarists that can play fast scales but I can't bear to listen to them unless they have something more to offer.

 

An hour of scale practice a day is alot, it should certainly improve your technique. How much you practice a day really depends on your stamina and if that practice is productive. I didn't see anywhere that you mentioned playing songs or music. I hope you are learning those (or writing )them as well. You can't go to an audition and play a few fast scales and hope to get the job.

 

It takes years to become a great guitarist, if you are making steady progress after 1-1/2 years then that is great. Most virtouso guitarists practice more than 2 hours a day, they make it a full time job, 6-8 hours a day for some. That can have bad side effects like tendonitis. You also have to balance life and making a living with your guitar playing. Realisticly there aren't that many musicians, especially in the narrow black/death metal genre that make a living at it full time. You should practice as much as you can, but if its not fun, you will lose the creative part of music, which is more important than the physical part.

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Welcome to the forum! It's always nice to meet fellow metal fans.

 

I've been hacking at metal guitar for about 15 years. I'd be better if the Devil bought my soul. He said he didn't need it. I wonder what that meant?

What a horrible night to have a curse.
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I'll second, fourth or fifth the fact that working with a metronome is key. Speed comes from precision and precision comes from slow focused practice. Slow down in order to speed up. Your right hand might never catch up with your left speed-wise. I'm the opposite, my picking hand is much faster than the fretting hand.

 

In addition to scales (I'd focus on the ionian to begin with, the rest are derived from it) practicing intervals and arpeggios is just as important. The scales are just the alphabet of music, you need to be able to construct interesting words and phrases not just recite the alphabet at top speed.

 

Segovia suggested (demanded!) two hours of scale practice a day. The purpose wasn't just to get the notes under the fingers or build speed but also to improve focus on tone, how the note is attacked, how it's shaped after it's attacked and as it decays. Practicing slowly lets you focus on each individual note and gain control over it's being. As you speed up the motions you use to control the notes become smaller but their effect remains.

 

John Mclaughlin has some good scale and interval exercises available in pdf format on his website. There are also some videos of some of the exercises at GuitarPlayerTV.com.

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