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Old 06-23-2012, 08:16 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by Guitarchitect View Post
Great article, thanks for sharing. Steve Morse has been giving similar advice for years, for example in this 2000 column on his practice routine:



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Old 06-23-2012, 08:20 AM   #27
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Does the amount of time you practice so much as what you take from practice? 9 - 12 hrs/day seems excessive. Get a job.

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Old 07-05-2012, 10:09 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by angelophile View Post
Didn't see any current threads on practice routines/materials.

Maybe a boring topic but important.

I manage 20 hrs per week these days, want to get some more breadth/variety.

most of my practice is alternate picking work.

(I max at 16ths 170bpm, most stuff I can play at 16ths 155bpm)

Maybe we could get a contest going of who can practice the most hours in a week ??!!

To save learning the hard way aim for quality not quantity of practice. I went through a lengthy stage of practicing on average 40-50hours per week and the resulting tendonitis was not fun - nowadays I try and break my practice up more with musical areas such as transcribing/ear training as well so it isn't so technique based! The worst bit is playing for hours and hours is so damn fun!
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Old 07-06-2012, 05:25 AM   #29
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I have been spending time thinking about how to prepare to practice.
For me all areas of musicality should be practiced in one session, they shouldn't be separated, so for instance if I want to work on a technique I want to be improving another important aspect of musicianship at the same time.

Here's an example of what I mean

Say you want to develop your sweep picking. That is a technique. But I also want to develop my skill at playing over chord progressions.
So rather than sit and work on the mechanics of sweeping I will take a chord progression, analyse the notes that make up the chord then work out the arpeggios in as many positions as possible and then I'll record the progression as a midi file (so I can start slow and work up to speed). I now have a backing track, I will then payplay the arpeggios over the chords using sweeping.

This has many benefits

1. I work on developing the technique of sweeping
2. I learn arpeggio fingerings
3. I learn how to solo over chords and I get the sound in my head

Now to make it interesting we should play over the chords practising both feels, straight 8ths and swung 8ths. This seems simple but really helps with phrasing as many rock guys can only play straight.

Here's a practical example

Take the four chords of a 12 bar
analyse the notes of each chord
Now work out the fingerings for each dominant 7 arpeggio I'in each position
Next you have to comfortable with those positions
The next part is to link them up. This is the musical part of the practice and involves voice leading.
Now the above points will take a long time, getting familiar with sweeping and memorizing fingerings alone is a big task
now you don't want to be a player that only knows a few keys. Take your chord progression and move it through the cycle of fourths, spend time moving the fingerings into different keys.
This is hard work but the hours will fly but you'll have developed several areas of musicianship and you'll develop in multiple areas rather than awesome at one thing and deficient in all the others. This was the mistake I made when I was learning lots of enthusiasm but a narrow practice regime.
My final part of the practice session is then to learn a song, because after all, learning songs is fun.
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Old 07-06-2012, 05:38 AM   #30
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Wow I play guitar for maybe 2-3 hours a week. Idk where you guys find time!
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Old 07-06-2012, 05:55 AM   #31
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TL;DR: Practice may make perfect, but is that what you really need?

If I manage to play ONE hour a day during the week I'm my own hero. During the weekends I can go up to 3-4 hours each day. All these hours are largely "unstructured". I warm up with some songs I like, then I run through most of mine. I play all of my leads again, first on the clean channel and then with all bells and whistles, to see if I have to zero in on something somewhere. Then I just start working on whatever song I might be writing at the time or start throwing up riffs and write down the few good ones that come out.

I'm far from technically proficient, it takes me some time to read notation, my ear skills are very limited, it takes me forever to figure out a riff without a tab, but all of that doesn't matter that much to me. I'm not a session musician, I'm a composer. I have a very good sense of rhythm, harmony and melody, and I feel that's all I need.

Don't get me wrong, I'm capable of some level of guitar wankery, I play a thrash-meets-death-meets-black-meets-prog kind of metal after all.

Metal is the air I breathe

For poorly recorded melo/black/power/thrash metal click here

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Old 07-06-2012, 11:20 PM   #32
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I get 45 minutes of actual practice a day on a good day. Probably several hours of just screwing around but it isn't focused and working on specific things. Seems to be going alright.

I'd genuinely like to hear what people are playing for "8-12 hours" of practice in a day.
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Old 07-06-2012, 11:45 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by Enselmis View Post
I'd genuinely like to hear what people are playing for "8-12 hours" of practice in a day.
1 hour metronome drill, 7-11 hours noodling in front of the TV
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[Fiction] 1:47 pm: she could probably toss a salad with that thing
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Old 07-07-2012, 01:25 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by Fiction View Post
1 hour metronome drill, 7-11 hours noodling in front of the TV
This is unfortunately accurate to what my practice up until this point has been. Seeing what Maniacal wrote and what Guitarchitect linked has been quite inspirational.
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Old 07-07-2012, 09:04 AM   #35
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4 hours of good practice will always beat 12 hours of noodling.

Books, posters, play along lessons and apps!

I teach on Skype - If you purchased my books, first lesson is free!


Please subscribe to my YouTube:
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Old 07-11-2012, 12:50 PM   #36
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I used to practice 8 hours a day before I went to college. I was going off of material like Fretboard Autopsy and just running through that material over and over again. Then I got tendinitis in my left hand and had to drastically reduce my practice hours. I felt like I just wasn't making any progress so after I graduated and got a job, I started taking guitar lessons again and now I do 1 hour a day with 1 day off on the day I have my lesson. I've made more progress in the last year structuring my practicing and setting a realistic goal for what I want to be able to do at the end of my practice, then I have by just repeating the same .... over and over again for 8 hours.
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Old 07-13-2012, 07:41 PM   #37
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Most of my practice is structured, but I'm going to try to get some unstructured time on keyboards doing ear training singing melodies and trying out new ideas.

+ Started keeping a log book of how quick I play specific exercises.

reaching 16ths @190 now
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Old 07-25-2012, 04:38 AM   #38
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So, I would like to ask you a question. I can commit around 2hrs per day (3-4hrs during the week) on guitar techniques and theory. I can call myself and intermediate guitarist (recorded like 3 LPs, gigged around 100 times currently, signed to some labels) however I never tried to practice anything. Only metronome and writing my own stuff/transcribing it into metronome. Now I'm 28 and I'm fascinated with progresive metalcore/djent stuff and funk music. Creativity is one thing but when technique and lack of theory stops you from moving on it is the good time actually to work on them What can you suggest me to work from the scractch ? I thought to separate diatonical scales like 2 scales per day / economy picking + sweep picking / tapping + legato / stacatto. Anyone ?
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