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losing confidence

ive been playng for about two years now, and ive learned a lot of music theory and what not and now im primarily focusing on finding my own style and perfecting technique.

but ive kind of begin to doubt my playing and i was just curious if many people have a crisis like this once in their life. ive tried to learn solos from pantera, slayer and rush songs, and pretty much couldnt keep up. is this normal? are those just extremely hard to tackle? or am i way behind where i should be?

just curious

the solos were

primal concrete sledge- pantera (the fast part)
dead skin mask - slayer
free will - rush

thanks for your time and thoughts.
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Re: losing confidence

7/9/2007 2:55 AM

Chris Bond II (2841) wrote:

If you can't play a solo at performance speed, then play it slower.

There is not a single solo in this world you can't play, you just may not be able to play it up to speed.

Just be certain of one thing, never take shortcuts.

If you have to play something 1/10 of its normal speed, that's okay, speed will improve with practice.

If you play something wrong, that is the crime, because then all you get for your practice is to be a better at playing crap.

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Re: losing confidence

7/9/2007 3:32 AM

Andy Wood (5136) wrote:

You are probably being a bit unrealistic in your expectations. It
takes a lot of time to do justice to the solos you are trying to
play. Many young players can play a lot of things after two years,
but they will not be playing it like a seasoned player. Great
playing is about more than notes, it's the whole range of little
expressive things you do that make a great player.

I think you should concentrate on getting your skills in order in
a more methodical way. Practice your scales, arpeggios, picking,
sweeps etc. Work on expression, clarity and nuances.

It can be like banging your head against a wall if you constantly
practice the same songs but you haven't developed the skills you
need to play them.

It's a myth that the best way to learn a song is to play that song
until it sounds good! You are far better off exposing yourself to
a large variety of things and practising different things which
raises your overall set of skills. Then you can come back to these
songs and try again. You can also ruin a favorite song for
yourself by slogging away at it for years.

Also, and Chris said, play slowly when learning anything and
speed it up gradually! Don't be in a hurry.

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Re: losing confidence

7/9/2007 7:22 AM

Carl Fitzgerald (48) wrote:

I'm all with Andy on the subject of repetition. I often find I make most progress with a piece by leaving it alone for a bit. Sometimes finding something similar- ie in the same key, will help.

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Re: losing confidence

7/9/2007 6:59 AM

Warren Hunt (5730) wrote:


I agree with Chris and Andy 100%. It is also important to never compare yourself to anyone regardless of what stage they are at. You are an individual not a robot.

Knowing to to play scales etc and good picking techniques, and knowing all the notes of the fretboard is going to not only help you play better, but it will also help define your individual style/sound.

I remember when I was playing after about 6 months and wanted to play Clapton's Wonderful Tonight. I had a tab book, but the notes did not really make any sense until I learned to play scales and my fingers were then able to move from note to not easily.

One last thing. Always have fun when you play. It helps the learning juices flow.


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Re: losing confidence

7/10/2007 5:28 PM

Chris Russell (3044) wrote:

head, heart, and hands. covered all three.
nice way to put it. sounds like you've seen a little bit of this journey.
hope Corey knows what he's getting in for. hehehe.


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Re: losing confidence

7/9/2007 8:06 AM

Ken Richardson (9051) wrote:

Those solos are challenging.

As noted, learn things slowly and accurately before speeding up.

You may not be progressing as fast as you want, but most of us don't! If you really want to learn those solos, pick one of them to concentrate on. You may find it helpful to slow it down using your PC.

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Re: losing confidence

7/9/2007 7:59 PM

Charles Gacsi (42523) wrote:

No one plays perfect all of the time. Besides everything that was mentioned, be your self. Think sound. Sing the sounds you play at the same moment as if you were one instrument. Perhaps.. maybe more like two strings in unison that come from your brain. I compose a lot. Which ever chord I use has a lot of immediate choices in pitch and rhythm.Some times after playing a small group of notes I will laugh because it felt so good hearing an immediate group of tones that came from my fingers. I didn't even think... just responded to my surroundings.


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Re: losing confidence

7/9/2007 8:43 PM

Bryan Morrison (9786) wrote:

I think it's all part of the process.

Try the best you can even if you know pretty darn sure you won't get it. Then move onto something else.(you still have to really try though.. spend weeks of time practicing).. A couple months later bust the first thing back out again.. and you'll notice how much easier it is the second time.

That's how things progressed for me. I'll bust my fingers until they just can't take it anymore.. take a couple days break, then move onto something else.. go back at it again later and find it easier.. repeat.

I bet you'll surprise yourself how much easier it is the second time after you've done this. Sometimes it takes a few years of this to get to where you want. If that's what it takes, and if you know what you want bad enough.. well then that's what it takes. :-)

You'll get their. Don't let it get you down. It's just part of the process.

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Re: losing confidence

7/10/2007 12:48 AM

Charles Gacsi (42523) wrote:

Dear Corey,

When practicing isolate each hand. Work and control. Many is the time when I find students complain about the left hand being the problem, yet via analysis it is the right hand, or could be the other way around. A person thinks it is the right hand but it is the left hand.

If there is a troublesome spot. Play it thru perfect 3 times with no mistakes. Then approach a few notes before and continue thru until you leave that section ..playing another measure or two or a few notes.

Some times it is one or two fingers that screw it up. Mark down the fingering on the sheet that you use.


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Re: losing confidence

7/10/2007 2:58 AM

Alan Roberts (10065) wrote:

You don't mention how much you practice or how structured
your practices are. In order to play at the level of the songs you
mentioned you're going to have to put in some serious practice.
It's not unobtainable, but think of it this way: You're asking what
it takes to play at a professional level ( those songs and solos
were recorded by pros). Think of how much time it would take to
get to the professional level at any other endeavor you could
think of. If after only two years, even at an accelerated rate of
learning, you're trying to tackle that type of material, then that
would be remarkable. Relax. By the time those guys played the
guitar parts in the songs you mentioned, they'd been playing far
longer than two years. You'll get there too, just keep at it.

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