Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Matthias Hornstein

How do you integrate new skills?

Recommended Posts

I am curious about your thoughts about how and when to integrate your new skills into your guitar playing.

 

 

1. How do you intregrate all the new things you are learning?

 

2. When do you start to integrate all those new things into your guitar playing? Once you mastered the skills? Right from the start?

 

 

It would be great to collect some ideas here on this VERY important topic!

 

 

Edited by Matthias Hornstein

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just by way of growth, new skills are mostly a progression of what needs doing. For those just trying to assemble a skill set, you need an overview and plan. Simple is usually better.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just by way of growth' date=' new skills are mostly a progression of what needs doing. For those just trying to assemble a skill set, you need an overview and plan. Simple is usually better.[/quote']

 

And how do you integrate those different techniques? Do you have a specific strategy?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been dabbling in music since I was a toddler. I'm 60 now. Given I'm not some uber monstuh, stuff I learn on anything I play is pretty much the next step (or steps) in the progression especially with the playing skills I've acquired working with Transcribe. For instance I can literally read through Bach fugues and Beethoven sonatas if I'm familiar with the pieces. Doesn't mean I can perform them but I can take them at below 1/4 speed and absorb them. Along those lines there is literally no playable music too difficult to tackle. So there's that. But I'm not driven by a performance schedule and I long ago stopped caring about music as "my show" so like I said, stuff to learn is usually a requirement of the level I'm on; an already integral part.

If a guitarist were to come to me and ask for help combining Smoke on The Water with Eruption, I would tell him not to do that.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just by way of growth' date=' new skills are mostly a progression of what needs doing. For those just trying to assemble a skill set, you need an overview and plan. Simple is usually better.[/quote']

 

 

This is spot on. Guitar, and music in general is an enormous subject. It would be absurd to spend your time learning sweep picking if you're playing folk music. As 1001gear said, it's a matter of what skill or technique you need for whatever it is you're working on. If you're working on a piece that requires flatpicking, you'll find that once you've done it and got it down, it becomes familiar enough that you can easily incorporate it into something else you're writing or arranging. It's a matter of the skills that you require to make *your* music becoming second nature.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

This is spot on. Guitar, and music in general is an enormous subject. It would be absurd to spend your time learning sweep picking if you're playing folk music. As 1001gear said, it's a matter of what skill or technique you need for whatever it is you're working on. If you're working on a piece that requires flatpicking, you'll find that once you've done it and got it down, it becomes familiar enough that you can easily incorporate it into something else you're writing or arranging. It's a matter of the skills that you require to make *your* music becoming second nature.

 

That makes absolutely sense to just learn whatever it is you need for your style of guitar playing

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There are no new skills that suddenly appear out of the ether. They are a natural but subliminal progression that becomes our learning curves. That's if you're building your own original sound with painstaking care not to appropriate from other artist's material. If you're referring to riffs appropriated from other artists and re-rendering them in some fashion to forge a new sound from, I wish you the creativity and good sense for success.

 

How you incorporate new skills (sounds) in the physical implementation sense of it is entirely dependent upon you and your aural and playing skills. Can you hear something on a public PA system, keep it in your head, find the chord progression there and then go home and play it within a few minutes? Does that sound like an impossibility at this juncture, if ever? I can do that. If I can, anyone can. But, that's an aural skill set I developed in coordination with developing my hands. That's just playing the original as I heard it. If there's something to be salvaged from it in the sense of technique, dynamics, melody, meter or perhaps simply mood, I can adapt it. That's from years of exposure to the fretboard and learning the notes (scales) by ear, the chord structures and their constituent notes and becoming quite adept at recognizing progressions by listening.

 

To answer your question succinctly is impossible. All I can give you is the usual response and that's to develop your ear and hand training to the extent that, in time, you will answer it yourself.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

That makes absolutely sense to just learn whatever it is you need for your style of guitar playing

 

Perhaps. Nothing wrong with broadening your horizons though. I'd say work on whatever it is you'd like to be able to do. When you can do it in your sleep, while the dog is barking and someone's car alarm is going, incorporating whatever it is will be at hand.

 

Maybe not at all relevant to you, but for perspective- in the 'classical' world we have to be able to do whatever the music in front of us requires. This style or that style. Bach has to be a certain way, and it's not really the way Brahms should be played. Then there's Gershwin, etc. The San Francisco Symphony has Metallica covered...lol. You wanna really be able to rip? Learn some Paganini Caprices. When you can play them in your sleep, while the dog...:blah:

 

(I suspect sometimes that Eddie, Steve, Yngwie, Joe, have all perused some violin etudes, concertos. There's a short but dead ringer from a Kreutzer violin etude in Eruption, anyway.)

 

Unless you have some pressing need- don't be limited to shred, or twang. Do whatever you want to be able to do and do it well. :rawk:

Edited by RockViolin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When it's something brand new, I usually spend a few minutes working on it very slowly during my warmup, just to make sure I'm getting the proper muscle memory. My favorite way to incorporate new techniques is to just write a new song with the new technique in it. I also like to just look a few chords and solo over them with emphasis on the new technique.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I am curious about your thoughts about how and when to integrate your new skills into your guitar playing.

 

 

1. How do you intregrate all the new things you are learning?

 

2. When do you start to integrate all those new things into your guitar playing? Once you mastered the skills? Right from the start?

 

 

It would be great to collect some ideas here on this VERY important topic!

 

 

I used to be that kind of guitar student that thought "oh I need to learn legatos, and I need to learn tapping, and I need to learn sweep picking etc...". The fact is that I didn't have a purpose other than the narcissism of learning skills in a vacuum. As soon as I got my first band, that changed to "I only really need to play the chosen songs perfectly".

 

So if you generally play covers, I'd say that first you decide what songs you want to play, and from that comes the need for learning/improving specific skills. Hence, there really isn't a problem of figuring out how to put to practical use something you've learned in a vacuum.

 

Then of course, once you do learn new skills, you can also consider which other songs use those skills, songs you've never played before and now you are likely to be able to learn.

 

If you're a composer on the other hand, you can also just write something that highlights a new skill you've picked up. I would still presume however, that you learned such skill because you already wanted to use it for something, rather than learning it only because someone else told you to.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Integrate is a moving target of a word because it has a very broad scope where skills are considered.

 

I'm a finger picker of an acoustic guitar. But, I keep it plugged most of the time because I like the sound of it over its unplugged sound. It's a nylon string classical into a Fishman SA220.

 

New skills -

 

Well, I've been playing longer that I care to say, or even remember because I should be better than I am by now, and new skills are old skills already integrated into my playing. Old dog without new tricks on the horizon? Pretty much, in the profound or basic sense of it, but open to development if interesting.

 

I think skill is relegated to picking in a wide scope of styles, in my case, which I can do. But, I don't necessarily like many of those styles. Then there's genre where the styles get separated into and, again, I'm not really into some of them. The point I'm making is skills are not necessarily what we enjoy doing, but cut across a catalog of what makes us better players.

 

Integrating, in my case, would be mixing up picking patterns and syncopation to benefit dynamics in an ever-ramping uptick of the right hand coaxing the left hand to feed it with ever-challenging material.

 

Take the alternating pattern of Travis Style picking. Many a song was carried on top of that style and continues to this day. For the sake of the song's lyrical propriety that isn't altogether a bad thing. But, to me it's watching paint dry. So, I might integrate it with another pattern that roles into and out of it in time, and then develop into that additional patterns and change-ups that keep the audience from second guessing the piece's dynamic progression. In this case, I'm fully aware of formulaic traps so I never play something the same way twice, dynamically speaking. It's art, not your fast food cheeseburger. Try to stay unique.

 

I might develop a pop song (whatever era) as an instrumental and give the lyric line prominence and further definition over a running rhythm.

 

I might study the characteristics of key changes to know and apply them seamlessly in an impromptu manner when it occurs to me they will work.

 

Overall, musical interests drive skills and to keep them sharp and on the up-tick their umbilical (interest) needs to be fed. That's probably the most difficult skill to acquire. Some people call it the spirit of playing and I'd agree with that. But, it's a visitor more than it is a resident so I work to keep it challenging me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Practicing till you are able to explore the scope of your accomplishment is definitely part of it. Sadly this is often not the case. What you have is a base of wannabeez and "pros(e)" pressed by deadlines and the promised land where the genre is in fact slapping together the latest product. The results are typically average at best. To be fair, the money is with the biggest mass of "music" lovers. The idea with that gig is to master the craft of conning the people; skimming their heads I call it. Ever wonder what crowd surfing really means? But the topic digresses.

 

There is no substitute for heart and soul and as much 'by the book' as you can stand.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...