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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-15-2001, 07:25 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Utrecht, Netherlands
Posts: 940
Practising - Your imput please

Ok, this topic has been beaten to death, but bear with me here.
I've been very busy the last few months to practice again. I really want to have some extra feel, knowledge and speed.
So I've been doing a wide range of excercises, loads of theorie and ofcourse reading tab and trying to play some songs I really really like. Like recommended by almost anybody, I use the metronome for allmost all my exercises.
However, there is nowhere mentioned how long you should stay with a certain speed. Until you can do it clean and perfectly, but that is relative. Once in a while I still screw up. What are usual times for you before you turn the speed up? And how much do you speed it up?
Secondly, a very fustrating issue for me is this:
When I try to learn a complete song, for instance I'm trying to play Tender surrender. All the slow 'normal' parts I've got under my belt. The fast parts I play really really slow.
But when I do that, I can't really hear what I'm doing. It sounds like nothing! I don't recognise what I'm playing, although I can dream that song by now. Did you experience the same, and what did you do to overcome it?
Thanks!
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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-15-2001, 01:33 PM
 
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Practising

Dude sometimes I think it's best left to the original artist to speak the way he speaks. Think of it in these terms...Who can mimick your own voice and do a better job of it than you? You see where I'm coming from?

* *Personally, I think the best thing to do is to learn the scales that are being used and not to worry about every little gnat-note. Any player could play something off the top of his head and have it come easy, right? How much harder would it be for another person to exactly emulate what the original player came up with? I mean, it can be beneficial to a point and it can also become a waste of time. Don't forget, Steve doesn't play everything exactly the same way on any two given days anyway.

* * *You can sound like you have Vai influences without playing his exact notes.
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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-15-2001, 01:49 PM Thread Starter
 
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Practising

I know, but that's not what I mean, I think.
I don't really mean the ultra fast wanking kind of stuff, I won't even concider playing that, it would make me insane.

But I'll give you an example. Tender surrender, at point
01:58, thats just after he switched to distorted sound.
The first part of that I can play, but when all the little notes come it to play, i'm getting lost. See, what happens is I play it very slow, to learn the notes. But what I hear when I do that, doesn't make any sense. Also, I can learn it one note at the time, but because it doesn't make any sense to my, I probably get all the timing wrong. So it becomes one gigantic mess in my head and hands.. That's what I mean.
The piece itself shouldn't be difficult, but I'm gettting lost at this.. (Yes, I'm a crappy guitar player, but I'm learning, ok.. )
Now, If there was a way to slow down what I hear on CD, that would help alot, I suppose.
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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-15-2001, 02:47 PM
 
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I understand where you're coming from, Jeroenn. I think most of us have had to muddle through things like that before. One suggestion, there is a way to slow down the music without changing the original pitch of the guitar.

* Cool Edit (even the free version) had this feature. Also, some of the guitar products out there have a "learn-a-lick" type feature that allows you to slow things down and try to make sense of it all.
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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-15-2001, 04:34 PM
 
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Personally,
When I was bashing the metronome I didn't play with a clean sound (call me stupid but I think mistakes show up more when playing distorted, not clean) so hence I played distorted with the metronome, also I play clean about once a millenium, so there was no point practicing clean i.e. practice what you'll play.

Once I was comfortable with a speed I moved it up 8 beats then got comfortable with that and moved up again etc....

Personally I'd give up on TS.
I can play it, but not like it's meant to be played, leave the mystery of the classics as just that.....mystery!
The best thing to do when learning a song like TS is to actually learn the notes slowly, like you are doing.
Get the fingering a positioning correct no matter how slow it sounds, then analyse it section by section and speed up or slow down each section as required, you have to be confident in what you're playing, once you have that you can work on the speed.

TS is a hard song, and also my favourite, it's his masterpiece if you ask me and I cannot re-create it at all, but nowadays I don't want to, I just add my own flavour to it

good luck

Steve

P.S. You are tackling one of his hardest songs.
Ever wonder why he never plays it live?



(Edited by ripl3y at 4:42 pm on Dec. 15, 2001)
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-15-2001, 05:07 PM Thread Starter
 
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Practising

He does play it live...
As a matter of fact, there is a video on vai.com which shows him playing it live, and I've got a few boot mp3's of him live performing it.

I very much doubt that TS is his hardest song.
But fear not, I'm also working on
Die to live, Attitude song, FTLOG and Blue Powder.
(edit: I'm not working on Vai stuff alone, I have loads more, but that is nowhere close to what Vai is doing, IE: Harry Sacksioni, some blues stuff and some classical stuff, like Tarrega. That's a whole other kind of difficulty)
As far as the feeling and such, I'm playing this for me, and my fun. The only one who is hearing my hacking is my cat...
Besides that, they add to my theoretical knowledge, my technical and all that stuff. Besides, I want to overcome that barrier, and it hopefully will make me a somewhat better player in the end.

About the slowdown option, I've found it and it kicks some serious a$$!!!!!!! That was *exactly* what I needed, thank you! This is helping me a lot, I now play it right, with the accents on the right places and the timing right. Still slow, but that will come later.

Thanks!



(Edited by Jeroenn at 5:10 pm on Dec. 15, 2001)
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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-15-2001, 05:15 PM
 
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Quote:
Jeroenn on 5:07 pm on Dec. 15, 2001
He does play it live...
As a matter of fact, there is a video on vai.com which shows him playing it live, and I've got a few boot mp3's of him live performing it.
Personally I've never heard him play it live, (although obviously I now realise he has), but the version on vai.com sounds quite crap!

Steve

(Edited by ripl3y at 5:35 pm on Dec. 15, 2001)
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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-15-2001, 07:42 PM
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
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If you have the music to a piece youare having truble with, try downloading Power Tab Editor 1.7. Just type in the part youre struggling with and play it back at any speed. That is how I learn. You will hear that a lot of the notes that are tabbed are not really what is played. Trust your ear
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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-18-2001, 06:44 AM
 
Join Date: May 2001
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wow looks like you guys are working on the same stuff as me! Tender Surrender I love bu so much of the solo I really can't come close to. (esp any tapping!!! ) FTLOG I have 80% down I think, just the really fast section and a fe bits twards th end I'm VERY sloppy with... Die To Live I have just started, and Blue Powder WOW that is hard (and my favourite) I have bits here and there that I can sorta play and bts that I really can't. *definately understand where you're coming from *on this though. I've been learning Tender Surrendr for nearly 2 years I think!
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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-23-2001, 12:44 PM
 
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I never practiced with a metronome for serious things. One time I did a PG lick over and over for 1.5 hrs nonstop against a metronome. It helped, but damn, it was boring.

I learned both TS and FTLOG without a metronome, and pulled 'em off live before .

-Justin

edit: Crap! sorry Phill and Andrew for forgetting about those recordings!! yikes, please don't be :angryfire:

(Edited by sixstringphoenix at 12:45 pm on Dec. 23, 2001)
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post #11 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-23-2001, 03:27 PM Thread Starter
 
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Ripley, it's all about taste I guess, but I *really* like the version of TS on that video. Man.... It's awesome.
Also, I have another live version on MP3 wich is pretty happening.
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post #12 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-23-2001, 08:56 PM
 
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Practising

Hmm Ahh Tender Surrender, the mothership of all 7th songs...

I heard him do it live on my 15th birthday and it was the first piece of music that ever brought a tear to my eye.

Right, so the trick to getting TS down is to break it down into beats like the time signature denotes. First of all FORGET TAB. If you want to learn it exact then learn to read AT LEAST standard notation rhythms. Then brush up on your polyrhythms www.vai.com, he does a nice lesson on those there.

After this then you will be able to visualse the note groupings, i.e how many fall into one beat of the bar and where they fall within the bar.

Do this slowly then *speed up as normal. After a while the fingerings and the sound will become really engrained into your head and you will be able to hear EVERY NOTE CLEARLY not matter what the tempo is.

The repercussions of this practice also make you transcribing skills good too.

Hope some of this helps, if not then i guess i'm a freak..

later

david beebee
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post #13 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-23-2001, 09:10 PM
 
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I saw him play Whispering A Prayer live this summer, and that made me cry....I feel ya, Track!
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post #14 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-23-2001, 09:49 PM
 
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Track7, why would you bother trying to get all those polyrhythms spot-on? It's all improvised.

-Justin
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post #15 of 27 (permalink) Old 12-23-2001, 10:02 PM
 
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Cuz he went to Berklee....
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