My playing is actually getting worse.

Discussion in 'Fred's Barcalounge' started by Jelly Roll Horton, Mar 31, 2021.

  1. hcsterg

    hcsterg Friend of Fred

    Feb 13, 2012
    Don't worry : me too, and we are certainly not alone :oops:... without training and reharsal. But you will retrieve and even improve when you will return on it ! Sometimes pausing isn't so bad... ;)

  2. michelb

    michelb Synchromatic

    Mar 27, 2020
    Backing tracks or play along with a recording?
    Or... ask everyone to record their part en use your actual band as backing track :D
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  3. Robbie

    Robbie Friend of Fred

    Jun 17, 2013
    Sarnia Ontario Canada
    I’d suggest backing tracks on YouTube. There are plenty to pick from in every genre. Groovy Two Chords is fun.
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  4. Gregor

    Gregor Synchromatic

    Oct 17, 2018
    New Brunswick, Canada
    Yep, another vote for backing tracks...much more fun than the metronome. Luckily I don't have much problem with rhythm. My father was a drummer(percussionist actually) and I think I inherited some of his timing.
    Speaking of YouTube, if you add the word "guitar" as in Guitar Backing Tracks in your search, many of them will not have the guitar part in them so you're not competing with that. Works great for soloing.
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2021
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  5. stevo

    stevo Friend of Fred

    May 1, 2012
    I can't play as well to a metronome as I can a drummer - I need to feel the beat. I've thought about getting one of these:

    But also, you really don't know how bad or good you sound until you start recording your practices. I find that it both surprises and humbles me, but it makes a huge difference in your development.
  6. S.R.Cash

    S.R.Cash Gretschie

    Aug 29, 2019
    Ontario, Canada
    There's a lot of good drummers on YouTube that put up many different tracks in dozens of styles. I'll use them quite a bit, and it's nice that you can fiddle with playback speed. I don't do well with a metronome either, I get lost in the click or something, makes my mind wander.
  7. MotorCentaur

    MotorCentaur Synchromatic

    May 11, 2016
    I like Guitar Pro 7. You can download songs free from songsterr or gptabs and play them on it. The beauty of it is since it's midi (or enough like it), is that you can play it any speed without affecting the pitch. It has a metronome you can have playing with a song too, if you like. It also has looping of any length, so you can work on songs section by section, even one bar at a time if need be.
  8. mrfixitmi

    mrfixitmi Country Gent

    Mar 20, 2010
    Don't feel bad, you are not alone.
    I remember piano lessons as a child, I swore that the metronome, even though it was a high quality Maelzel, was always wrong.
    It must have been made well, because it still worked after getting launched through the room on several occasions.
    That said, I found the most benefit from playing with band members. Some of those studio musicians were human metronomes in their own right. When the tempo shifted, they always stayed in the pocket.

    Not a lot of success with my son either until we purchased a BOSS sound machine, he did much better with one of the drum beats.
    When his choir was recording in the studio, the choir teacher had issues with keeping time using the "click track". When we changed to a live drummer and guitarists, it seemed to fall in place.
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  9. AllenK

    AllenK Gretschie

    I miss my sessions with the band, whether gigging or rehearsing. I think I play better when we are together.
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  10. stevo

    stevo Friend of Fred

    May 1, 2012
    I'm choking right now from laughing with salad bits in my mouth! LOL.

    FWIW, the original Chicago drummer was booted for not being able to hang with the click track. Or that's how I recall it from the documentary. Not sure if he was actually the original, but he was part of the seminal lineup.
    mrfixitmi likes this.
  11. I am in the same boat. The more I practice alone, the harder it si for me to get back into the swing with other players. On the good side, i am better at doing solo shows, but thats not me.
  12. Archtops

    Archtops Synchromatic

    Mar 4, 2021
    I’ve gone to lap steel guitars in the last several years because of OA and have to say I love playing with a bar.
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  13. kchris1

    kchris1 Newbie

    May 13, 2010
    Charles Town, WV
    Maybe you're just moving into Jimmy Page territory. :)
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  14. GHook

    GHook Gretschie

    Sep 3, 2010
    Put down your guitar for about 10 days. Buy a cheap bass and play along to the radio. It will help tighten things up and your guitar playing will feel much improved almost immediately. At least it works for me.
    dougmon and Robbie like this.
  15. NiterideGuitarist

    NiterideGuitarist Electromatic

    Jun 4, 2016
    Rochester, NY
  16. NiterideGuitarist

    NiterideGuitarist Electromatic

    Jun 4, 2016
    Rochester, NY
    Funny - just a couple of days ago I noticed that my practice has been sloppy. I attributed that to playing in the house as opposed to my man cave, using my little 3W Blackstar, with headphones, just playing along to tunes on my I- phone in silent mode. I chalked it up to “well no one else is listening”. It was mindless and irresponsible and Pandemic nonsense but fun just the same. I will do it again!
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  17. Robbie

    Robbie Friend of Fred

    Jun 17, 2013
    Sarnia Ontario Canada
    IMHO I believe playing to a backing track is essential. For me personally I far prefer it over a metronome simply because a metronome isn’t musical. It keeps time for sure but the tick tick tick drives be crazy and the biggest detriment for me is that it gets boring. Once I’m bored...I’m out.
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  18. englishman

    englishman Gretschified

    Apr 5, 2014
    It's easy to play sloppy to a backing track. All the work is done for you.
    I feel it's good to mix it up. Do the basics with the click first and then apply that to the backing track making sure you're right on with the drums.
  19. Robbie

    Robbie Friend of Fred

    Jun 17, 2013
    Sarnia Ontario Canada
    Agree, a combination of the two is a good thing.
  20. hogrider16

    hogrider16 Gretschie

    Oct 18, 2017
    charles town wv

    Drum machines, backing tracks and the like only cover up the slop. If you want to get good and precise, it's hard work. You need to spend time working the fundamentals with a metronome so you can hear your mistakes. It's the difference between actually practicing every day or just playing every day. Nothing wrong with either, but if you want to get good, practice.

    Also, you need to record yourself and listen back. If you don't have a teacher, this is essential to really hearing your mistakes.
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