Welcome My Fellow Lazy Guitarists

Musical genius doesn't always have to be about theory and technique. After all, music is art. It's about the story it tells, the effect it has on the listener, the things it doesn't tell, the way it makes you feel, and that's usually never covered in a music class. I'm gonna give you tips, tricks, advice, and articles about guitar playing and the modern music world without all the technical bullshit.

So bypass the $25 a week guitar lessons, forget the online instructional videos that take forever to say nothing, and let's just focus on the shit that really matters. This site will cover everything from starting and keeping a band, perfecting that awesome tune you just wrote, choosing cover songs for gigs, and how to write songs beyond power chords without getting lost in a giant chord book.

This site is specifically written for guitarists, so theres no need to interpret lessons that were written for beginners in music theory and not the beginning guitarist. All written just for you...

James The Great

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Writers Block: Guitar Style

As guitarists and musicians, we face a very unique form of writer's block, much different from an inability to produce the right words. And if you've ever been in a band, or ever tried to write a song, you know exactly what I mean. And as a self-taught guitarist, this is even more difficult. You can have the most amazing songs playing in your head, but if you can't get it from your head to your guitar, its better off not existing at all.

But here are a few simple tips to get the machines of production running again.

  1. Keep Writing. Frustrating advice I'm sure, but there is a shred of some abstract logic behind it. Sometimes all we can write is crap, but continuing to write regardless has two potential solutions. First of all, sometimes you're merely in the state of mind that it's crap, and writing it down and coming back to it later will give you a fresh perspective. Secondly, at some point you'll run out of crap to write... Sometimes it's just a matter of getting that style of writing that's failing you so badly out of your system.

  2. Collaborate. Hooking up with the drummer down the street or the bassist your friend told you about or even a fellow guitarist can really open the creative floodgates. Adding any instrument to your work can add a very powerful dynamic to your music, and letting someone else interpret and construct the work you already have can push it in a direction you yourself would have never thought of. Working with another musician is one of the best cures to writers block.

  3. Learn Something New. Sometimes we're just bored. Everything we know and have written is no longer appealing to us as we've seen it almost a million times, and the thrill is just gone. Using sites like Ultimate Guitar and learning a few of your favorite songs can replenish your love for music once more, and sometimes you might even get lucky and trail off while trying to learn a new song and write something completely original.

  4. Listen to Something New. Use sites like Pandora to listen to some new music. You might find some new inspiration.

  5. Brush Up on your Theory and Technique. Google some articles on theory and techniques that will allow you to write more complex and dynamic pieces. The more you know, the easier it is to get those masterpieces out of your head and into your world.

  6. Get Some New Equipment. Take a trip to Guitar Center and dabble with some of the new gear they've got. Just hearing a new sound can trigger your mind into rethinking a song you're already working on. Just hang out and play some of your riffs and mess around. Its not only fun, but also a great way to go over some of your old songs.

  7. Play a Different Instrument. Like a lot of the other things on the list, playing with a piano, drum set, bass, or anything really, can get your mind running in new directions again. The piano is especially easy because anyone can touch a key and produce a sound. Get out of your comfort zone and go back to the innocence of being amazed by the guitar and everything it entailed. Where the guitar was new and interesting. Sometimes the best remedy.

  8. Take a Break. Lastly, and most obviously, take a break. You might just be over-analyzing it, stressing yourself out. So put the axe down and go see a movie or read a book. You'll come back, kiss and make up, and thing's should be good as new.

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