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Skill or Talent?


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What would you say is most important in guitar playing? Skill, meaning something you've learned; or talent, meaning your own virtuosity?


As for me, I'm leaning toward talent to be truly great, which I don't have nearly enough of. I love playing, and I've got enough skill to wing it; but I think it takes talent to feel the music and instinctively know how to manipulate the guitar (or any other instrument, for that matter).


Kudos to all of you talented people! Do you think there's a point at which skill developes into talent?

You've got the best guitar

You've got the best amp

Now get the best pick!


TuskBuffer Mammoth Ivory Guitar Picks

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In a perfect world, you would have both. I have seen many players make a great living playing top 40. I don't know how much talent it takes to copy other people's stuff, but i'd say originality is best. lot's of folks can play ZEP and THE STONES, but you know they live in apartments and eat ramen noodles. Talent, meaning gift's that only you can bring to the table, is way more important than skill. :)
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coach rick majerus (u of utah basketball) once said "i can teach a tall kid to play basketball, but i can't teach a short kid to be tall."


skill and talent intertwine. whatever skill/talent ratio you have makes you unique. just exploit what you have to the fullest. :D

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Skill and practice can get you a long way, but real talent will knock you over no matter what genre of music. I used to play in church choir with a guy named David (Dahveed) Garza. He was maybe 13 or 14 and just learning to play the guitar. He over the summer he started high school took it on himself to learn the first 2 SRV albums pretty much note for note. He just had music in him. He is now been playing professionally for many years and has even had some hit songs. The guy just has talent, he works hard at it but he always had that extra spark and understanding of music that most people never get.
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Skill is physical, talent is mental.

I see skill as being able to physically play what ever you're trying to play. Talent is knowing what to play.


You can learn skills. Talent can only be nurtured in an attempt to let it grow & expand - if someone doesn't have it, they can't learn it.

May all your thoughts be random!

- Neil






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My only real talent is my persistence in continuing to do something day in and day out that I know I will never really be great at. Slowly, though, my skills do improve somewhat. Its really a cycle. I tell my kids this all the time: The more you do something, the better you get at it, and the better you get at it the more fun it is, and the more fun it is, the more you do it, and the more you do it, the better you get, and the better you get


I think skill and talent are both intertwined. They can each be developed and refined and can both feed off each other. In a way, the ability to enhance your skill is a talent, just as the ability to find and nurture your talent is a skill.


Im sure we all know an awful lot of people with the desire to play music, people who may have talents such as a good ear or great sense of time, but we also know that desire is not enough. You also need a way to follow through and hone the skills to make that desire a reality, and that, at least to me, is a talent.



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