30 Tips To Be A Better Guitarist
By Strings Direct – 29 August, 2023
If there's one thing that's unanimous across all guitarists it's the need to get better; here's a checklist of things to consistently do to make sure you get the most of out your practice time. It can be hard and it will take a lot of time but it's going to be worth it.
- Play standing up and/or sit up straight and learn to relax.
- Discipline yourself to learn at least 1 new piece of information a week like a song or chord scale.
- Ask yourself and others questions and learn to problem solve your difficulties often.
- Create a permutation of everything, e.g. learn scales or licks in reverse.
- Play in keys or positions you never like to go, e.g. Eb.
- Learn the rudiments of rhythmic values, especially the rests.
- Always practice slowly to a beat or a click (metronome) and don’t rush or try to go fast before your time.
- Make it a priority to clean up sloppy playing using muting or stop the mindless and be mindful of everything you play.
- Learn something from another instrument or style/genre.
- Play the same licks in different places on the neck.
- Learn simple tunes like something off the TV using only your ear.
- Transpose songs into different keys.
- Put the plectrum down for a day and play with your fingers.
- Learn a part until you can do it in your sleep.
- Jam often or have a lesson - it’s really good to play with other people (try and find someone better than you).
- Balance songs, chords and theory with technique.
- Spend 20 mins playing with only upstrokes.
- Spend a day on slides bends and vibrato.
- Spend more time actually playing your guitar rather than on your gear or eBay.
- Spend time in shorter bursts of practice, perhaps get a countdown timer.
- Play at a high volume to hear your mistakes so you can rectify.
- Practice on an acoustic with heavy strings then fly on your electric.
- Learn different time feels and apply them to your licks, like swing or ¾.
- Keep a journal and set goals.
- Record yourself practicing and playing, even have a mirror in front of you if you can so you can spot bad habits.
- Play a piece in front of people as often as you can.
- Learn and write something in a new scale or mode.
- When you start to learn or write something, do it all the way and don’t give up until it’s done.
- You can do it, believe in yourself.
- Don’t compare yourself to people more advanced than you.
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