We all have those turning points in our guitar and music life that we thank the moment that we found them over and over. What's beautiful about playing an instrument is that you pretty often reach those points and you are always finding out about more brilliant stuff that you can do with your instrument.
Today I will share with you the 7 things that changed my guitar life the most. Things that I can divide my time with the guitar to “before” and “after” I found out about them. Let's start:
The 7 Major Things That Changed My Guitar Life:
1 – When I Realized How Much Farther I Can Get With Knowledge in Music THEORY
That's a big one that took me some time to come by. By knowing the theory, and especially the way that the theory works around the guitar, my musical horizons expanded leaps and bound ahead of what they used to be. Suddenly I started to understand how music works, why songs are structured one way or another and how I can use this to my advantage.
Practically, it gave me the option to start jamming with other people and playing lead guitar, to write my own original songs with unexpected twists, and much more. Followed this, I can now play lead on a lot of other instruments as well and jam to my heart's content – and that's all thanks to music theory.
2 – When I Started Recording Audios and Videos of Myself Playing
You want to see how you're really doing and start improving fast? Record yourself. This has the effect of making you feel like you're at a performance and have to do your absolute best instead of just doodling around, because you are going to hear every minor mess-up later in the recording.
Use your smartphone audio recording app, or even better – record videos! This will show you the mistakes visually as well. Make sure you record yourself on a regular basis and you will start seeing results in your technique and your strive to perfection in your sound.
Read more here in this great post on Jazz Advice blog: 4 Reasons Why You Should Start Recording Yourself Today.
Another cool thing that is based on recording is the use of loop pedals. Read here: Start Using A Guitar LOOP Pedal And Unleash Your Creativity!
That's a harmonica & guitar recording I made not too long ago of a Green Day song:
3 – When I Started Creating My Own Chord Books with My Favorite Songs
We all play guitar because there are certain songs we love. At the point when I started creating my own books that are made of my favorite songs I was able to always take these books with me, and practice and jam these songs with other people whenever I took out the guitar.
The chord book took my fun levels to new heights, gave me more motivation to play more often, and essentially made me a better guitar player. I also use them when I play piano.
Read more here: Create DIY Chord Books – Take All Your Songs Everywhere You Go
4 – When I Started Learning How to Sing Better and Really ENJOY Singing with the Guitar
Singing can be enormously fun, it makes you a much more entertaining guitar player, and also has some stunning health benefits as well. Some of us are shy and usually don't sing when we play the guitar, and some of us do, but what most people don't understand is that you can learn how to sing much better. Singing is not something that you either got or you don't, and it's probably even gonna take much less effort to learn to sing well than it did to learn to play the guitar itself.
Singing is an instrument by itself, and when you're feeling that you sing well, you're gonna have plenty more fun when you're playing the guitar.
Read here for a kick-start on the subject: 4 Huge Singing Tips – Sing Much Better TODAY!
5 – When I Started Playing The Harmonica and the Guitar Together
The harmonica was the first instrument that I started playing in addition to the guitar. All instruments that you play will help you with the guitar as well, but the harmonica is the KING of pairing up with the acoustic guitar – they just sound so good together and lift songs to whole new levels.
The harmonica is an easy instrument to pick up on, and when I combined it with a harmonica holder and started playing them both simultaneously, I opened new worlds of fun and musicianship to myself. That's what gives you The Musical Edge™ and makes you special as well – harmonica turns heads since it's such a great instrument. Also – it's so cheap and so portable that you can easily take it with the guitar at any time.
Read more here: Guitarist? Learn Harmonica! 9 Inspiring Reasons To Do So. And also here: Best Beginner Harmonica – Which Harmonica Is The Best For Beginners?
6 – When I Started Writing My Own Songs and Music
Writing your own stuff is what gave me the “artist's point of view” on music, thought me to appreciate even more all the songs that I already liked, and moreover, it gave me my own corner in music and being able to play stuff that came out of me and not out of somebody else.
Even though I definitely did not win any Grammys for any of my songs, the feeling that I get from playing my own creations is one of the best feelings of satisfaction that I got out of music. Slowly I am trying to free even more time so I can focus more seriously on songwriting.
Read here more about writing your own songs and music: Why Writing Songs Of Your OWN? 4 Damn Good Reasons! And also here: The 6 Best Songwriting Beginner's Tools.
7 – When I Realized I Have to Practice SLOW in Order to Play Fast
When I learned the importance of slowing down and practicing very slow, my improvement pace and my sound cleanliness have gotten worlds better. This works for any other instrument and not just the guitar.
You think that in order to play fast you need to practice fast? WRONG. Play slow. Very slow. Like 50 BPM slow – at least half of the overall time you practice. By doing that, you will be able to achieve perfect technique and playing clarity, and get your “muscle memory” realize “how it should be done”. Most people don't do it and even if they play fast, they can't play really clean, which is what makes you sound really good – the way recording musicians sound.
Take a minute to read about this principle here more thoroughly. You won't regret it: SKYROCKET Your Guitar Skills Using This ONE Simple Secret
That's it. Thank you for reading! What were YOUR guitar life-changers? Please share with us in the comments.
Peace and have fun!