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Unread 04-16-2012, 11:34 PM   #1
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Really looking to improve, I've hit a plateu.

I've been playing guitar for almost 8 years now, and I feel like I've reached a place where progress seems a thing of the past.

Ever since watching Thordendal play 'Bleed' online, I've matched his closed hand + all wrist technique, and it serves me well. I play things with much more fluidity; cleanliness/tightness, string skipping, faster picking, etc. I practice to a metronome, and I'm on time. I know about one or two scales perfectly, and for the most part I've trapped myself into playing in and around the pentatonic scale/some harmonic minor.

I don't know all the notes on the fretboard, can barely read music, and I know very little about my instrument and a lot of it's capabilities past my own personal experiences. Don't get me wrong, I can play. Hear for yourself: Dakotak's sounds on SoundCloud - Create, record and share your sounds for free

But if you listen to this song in particular, it showcases my issue very clearly: Anomaly by Dakotak on SoundCloud - Create, record and share your sounds for free. The solo is boring. It's uninteresting, and I try to make it sound like I know what I'm doing, but I'm not fooling anybody. I want to be able to freely weave in and out of scales and modes, have more tricks up my sleeve, etc. I LOVE MY GUITAR, though it bums me that I'm not all that excited to play it, I've become predictable in my opinion.

So, if you read that, and I thank you if you did, where do you think I should start? I feel left in the dark and I want to find a way out! I'd really appreciate advice/criticism!

Thank you all for your time, friends!
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Unread 04-17-2012, 12:08 AM   #2
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When I feel like I'm stuck in a rut, I just put my guitar down for a few days/weeks/months until it just feels right. Sometimes you can't really force yourself to be creative.
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Unread 04-17-2012, 01:54 AM   #3
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Start with the advice in the other rut threads. Cliffnotes version: learn more theory, work other things out by ear, learn different styles. Make sure to give creative rhythms some of your learning time. A good rhythm can really brighten something up. Pitch is not the only focus.

Try the free sample chapters of my book to learn theory, how to use it and to learn the fingerboard. There's a link to it in my sig. PM me if you have any questions or difficulty with it.


Check out my book: "Playing Guitar Musically: A Guide to Creativity on Guitar & Bass"
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PM me if you want to discuss it or just fancy a chat.

I also give lessons over Skype, Bandhappy and within the Lothians.
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Unread 04-19-2012, 05:55 PM   #4
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It sounds like your getting bored because of a limited vocabulary on the guitar. This is by no means a put down because me and prolly a ton of other people have been there. I'm kinda thinking that you may want to start to get some of the modes down, at least the more popular ones. (Dorian, Aeolian, Mixolydian etc). The more options you have the more cool shit you can play. There's absolutely nothing wrong with the scales you know but the more the merrier!
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Unread 04-20-2012, 01:27 AM   #5
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Make sure to pay attention to modes as being scales with variations like b2s, #4s so you can see their uses in subverting or distorting more common harmony. Play some percussion to open your ears to rhythm more, as well.


Check out my book: "Playing Guitar Musically: A Guide to Creativity on Guitar & Bass"
FREE Sample Chapters Here
Buy the full book here.
PM me if you want to discuss it or just fancy a chat.

I also give lessons over Skype, Bandhappy and within the Lothians.
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Unread 04-24-2012, 04:19 PM   #6
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In addition to what everyone else has said- you could try incorporating some chromaticism (playing "outside"). Essentially, add some chromatic embellishments as passing tones within your solo playing, notes that lie outside the scale. It adds character to the part, and as long as you're not hanging on one of the passing tones, it's still relevant and maintains tonality.

This thread may help you- How to Develop an Outside Sound

Also- Govan made a very coherent and helpful video regarding what I'm talking about:


Hope this helps, and might freshen up your playing.

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Unread 04-24-2012, 04:41 PM   #7
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