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Mp3 Players and Improved Playing (a feel-good tale)

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  • Mp3 Players and Improved Playing (a feel-good tale)

    a few years ago I received a mp3 player as a Christmas gift. it was one of the 40 gig variety, so i loaded it up with as many of my CDs as would fit and have been in heaven ever since. well anyway, about a year ago, i started getting into the habit of setting the player on shuffle and then commiting myself to learn whatever song spits out; all guitar parts including any leads (a hack guitarist's "russian roulette", if you will).

    I have stuck with it, and am noticing that my playing is improving considerably. I find myself taking more risks on the fretboard than I have in years (get... out... of... the... box...) and my rhythm progressions and phrasing are really starting to improve as well.

    the best part is~ i've really been enjoying playing again (after hitting a pretty big slump about three years ago)! I thought for a while that maybe i'd just be a seriously mediocre player with decent gear. there may be hope for this old dog yet...

    anyone else have this type of practice routine, or a similar story?
    INTERNET stands for: Inter-connected Network of Tools Endlessly Regurgitating Negatively Energized Tantrums

    My Guitars | ... but can he play? | Currently a Gold Trader +6

    Use extreme caution when attempting to interact or transact with IndianScout.

  • #2
    very different approach to practice but I dig it. I might acually steal that idea to make my own practice schedule more interesting.

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    • #3
      what a great idea, i use my ipod to store all my cd's, in fact i cant even remeber the last time i used a cd player lol, i will try out the shuffle idea and see what happens
      <div class="signaturecontainer">good deals with :<br />
      <br />
      metalheadUK <br />
      ancient mariner x 2</div>

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      • #4
        i posted it up hoping that someone else might take it on as a routine. definitely keeps things interesting, IMO. working on "Cliffs of Dover" by Eric Johnson now. see you in a year...
        INTERNET stands for: Inter-connected Network of Tools Endlessly Regurgitating Negatively Energized Tantrums

        My Guitars | ... but can he play? | Currently a Gold Trader +6

        Use extreme caution when attempting to interact or transact with IndianScout.

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        • #5
          Ok, I have a question about your routine Dane.

          Do you only work on that one song, or are you learning two or three at a time.

          So is Cliffs of Dover your entire focus? Do you use tabs to get a jump start or do you learn it all by ear?

          I need to get in a better practice routine as well. I am just not always that patient thought.
          <div class="signaturecontainer"><font size="1"><b>Good Deals</b> - BlackHatHunter, vexed73, Shamdog, sa1126, Doctor Morbius, Tweedledee, RitalinCupcake, CompleteGuitard, Metal0822, lfrz93, deadanddreaming, Billy Dee, jigowatt, jcameronk2, Steve_man, orangesix, Zuzuman, BryanFTL, finboy, IBDBB (x2), Mike Fiasco, Posh1227, Woody_in_MN, finboy, FarToMany, kojdogg, Fusion1, dcindc, fulcrumpoint, live-I-evil, Deadbeat Son, Teletaylor, Mr Goodbomb, Firebrand, Jse, bdhn, Lonnie99(x2), jjegg</font></div>

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          • #6
            Ok, I have a question about your routine Dane.

            Do you only work on that one song, or are you learning two or three at a time.

            So is Cliffs of Dover your entire focus? Do you use tabs to get a jump start or do you learn it all by ear?

            I need to get in a better practice routine as well. I am just not always that patient thought.


            depending on the complexity of the song, i have been either focusing just on one (if it's relatively easy) or a couple at a time if one particular tune is tricky (like "cliffs..."). i try to go by ear initially to improve that aspect of my playing. if i'm in a pinch on a particular progression or lead pattern, then i'll bust out youtube or go digging for notation.

            this approach has definitely been teaching me patience! i am not a patient person, but i swear i'm getting better. it's the discipline to stay on track even if things aren't coming together immediately. i'm also really trying not to half-ass it just to get to another song. i'm really focusing on the phrasing and vibrato instead of just hitting the notes. i hope you try it out for a month or so, and good luck!
            INTERNET stands for: Inter-connected Network of Tools Endlessly Regurgitating Negatively Energized Tantrums

            My Guitars | ... but can he play? | Currently a Gold Trader +6

            Use extreme caution when attempting to interact or transact with IndianScout.

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            • #7
              I had a go at this earlier on today, but instead of shuffling every song on my ipod I just let it pick a random backing track (I've collected loads of backing tracks from various guitar magazines over the last few years).

              So, I ended up learning the main rhythm parts to Best of You by the Foo Fighters this afternoon. This isn't the type of song that I would normally have tried but I really enjoyed learning it and had fun playing it to the backing track.

              I've been in a bit of a repetitive routine recently with just playing the same old riffs and solos but I think this is a great way of breaking out of you 'safe zone' and improving different parts of your playing.
              <div class="signaturecontainer"><b><font color="Navy">Member of the Epiphone Empire</font><br />
              <font color="Blue">Member of the F-Holes</font></b><br />
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              <a href="showthread.php?p=26802372#post26802372" rel="nofollow" title="Harmony Central Forums - Post 26802372"><font color="Black"><u><b>The Practice</b></u></font></a></div>

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              • #8
                I think I will give this a go. I have a vox amplug and it will work great for this.

                I also feel like I repeat myself often. I never made a big deal about learning solos note for note, but I am starting to see how it can limit a player. I sound like me, but for the same riffs over and over and over.....

                I need to add some new phrases and licks to my playing. I have 30 gigs of music on my laptop so new songs shouldn't be a problem.
                <div class="signaturecontainer"><font size="1"><b>Good Deals</b> - BlackHatHunter, vexed73, Shamdog, sa1126, Doctor Morbius, Tweedledee, RitalinCupcake, CompleteGuitard, Metal0822, lfrz93, deadanddreaming, Billy Dee, jigowatt, jcameronk2, Steve_man, orangesix, Zuzuman, BryanFTL, finboy, IBDBB (x2), Mike Fiasco, Posh1227, Woody_in_MN, finboy, FarToMany, kojdogg, Fusion1, dcindc, fulcrumpoint, live-I-evil, Deadbeat Son, Teletaylor, Mr Goodbomb, Firebrand, Jse, bdhn, Lonnie99(x2), jjegg</font></div>

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                • #9
                  let me know how it goes!
                  INTERNET stands for: Inter-connected Network of Tools Endlessly Regurgitating Negatively Energized Tantrums

                  My Guitars | ... but can he play? | Currently a Gold Trader +6

                  Use extreme caution when attempting to interact or transact with IndianScout.

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                  • #10
                    The Amplug is great for this kind of thing. I've had one for a while but only recently started using the mp3 connection on it.
                    <div class="signaturecontainer"><b><font color="Navy">Member of the Epiphone Empire</font><br />
                    <font color="Blue">Member of the F-Holes</font></b><br />
                    <br />
                    <a href="showthread.php?p=26802372#post26802372" rel="nofollow" title="Harmony Central Forums - Post 26802372"><font color="Black"><u><b>The Practice</b></u></font></a></div>

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                    • #11
                      When I was a kid I did something similar. It was when dual cassette decks were new. I'd put in a tape on each side and it had that continuous function where the 2nd one would start playing after the 1st one ended.
                      I'd throw in two random tapes and just play along for hours on end.

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