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Celtic Frosted Flakes
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:49 am
Posts: 394
Location: Svea Rike
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 9:25 am 
 

So I am currently waiting for my monthly monies to invest in a guitar, I have chosen the cheapest I could find that still seems decent (a squier strat) that costs about 1000 swedish kronor.

Now the question I have - how far can I get, realistically, without taking lessons immediately? Is it even possible for a complete beginner like myself to even learn anything the right way without a mentor or tutor? I am planning on taking lessons eventually, but I think I might start out with just a book or some internet lessons before that.
Also, how far could one expect to come in one year of playing? My goal is to basically be able to play simple songs like "The Crying Orc" by Burzum, etc. Can i realistically expect to be able to play that within a year maybe?

Thank you for your answers, and I apologize if this is too trivial of a matter to even make a thread about.
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ShaolinLambKiller
King Asshole

Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:10 pm
Posts: 11637
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 9:43 am 
 

This is something that's so open according to personal ability and desire on wanting to play. There will never be a solid date to give you when to achieve your goals. could be a month or 3 years. it's all in how long you put your work in daily for achieving this goal. It's not like a RPG where after a certain amount of xp is gained you have a new level of ability.
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Celtic Frosted Flakes
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:49 am
Posts: 394
Location: Svea Rike
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 10:04 am 
 

Well I have A LOT of free time on the weekends, time that is essentially spent on the computer, and time that I would gladly spend on the guitar instead, so that is not a problem. I am also very interested in learning, not solely to have the ability to play, but also the process of learning in itself. "the chase is better than the catch"
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FearTheNome
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2003 8:41 am
Posts: 372
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 10:15 am 
 

There's a lot of instructional info on the web. If all you ever want to do is play stuff like old school black metal, that should be sufficient. Watch some lessons on the basics, learn to read tablature, and start teaching yourself simple songs.

Topics you'll need to study in order to play basic songs:
0) How to tune your guitar
1) Basics of rhythm
2) How to fret notes and hold your pick
3) How to play a power chord
4) How to read tablature

And you'll need to buy a basic guitar amp.. strongly suggest you save your pennies and get a decent practice amp like a peavey bandit or roland cube, rather than one of the awful starter amps with an 8" speaker and horrible sounding distortion.

The main thing to be concerned about is that without a teacher, you may inadvertently teach yourself bad habits that you would need to unlearn if you ever wanted to become really really good. Also, unless you're very good at teaching yourself, it may take longer to reach any given level of skill.

If you don't care, then have at. There's a whole internet of information out there.

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Celtic Frosted Flakes
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:49 am
Posts: 394
Location: Svea Rike
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 12:10 pm 
 

Thank you for the answer. I am already looking at instructional videos on youtube etc, and it seems fairly doable to teach myself the points you've made.
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Syntek
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 1:14 pm
Posts: 603
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 1:27 pm 
 

If it were not for my teacher, I'd still be in all kinds of terrible ruts and habits that I wouldn't have known about otherwise, which would've greatly debilitated my playing.
The best way I'd recommend to learn guitar is from someone more experienced than yourself.

As for practice amps, you really can't go wrong with the Line6 Spider IV 15. Cheap, with lots of different tones and effects available easily and instantly, that all sound great for any genre, as well as a built in tuner (albeit a not very good one, heh).

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awheio
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2011 2:00 am
Posts: 260
Location: United States
PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 2:44 am 
 

I never had a teacher, and I think my technique is mostly fine. However, not having a teacher caused me, in my youthful ignorance, to fuck up many other things. For example, I never really acquired improvisational skills, my rhythm is lacking, I'm bad at playing with others, etc...

If you're teaching yourself, you just need to be extra vigilant and self-critical. And practice a diversity of things -- as an obvious example, you shouldn't just start out by spending weeks seeing how quickly you can pick.

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Hayisforhorses
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Jul 05, 2006 11:47 am
Posts: 527
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 6:33 am 
 

Besides doing the usual such as practicing basic picking/rhythm playing (use a metronome or play to the song seriously)

If you want to learn some basic theory first learn the major scale! and then some basic chord theory. Personally I found this guide very helpful and well written: http://www.museweb.com/ag/chord_form.html

Read through that and play around with this website at the same time: http://www.all-guitar-chords.com/index.php
Should help to make things quite clear.
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ShaolinLambKiller
King Asshole

Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:10 pm
Posts: 11637
Location: United States
PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 6:44 am 
 

Don't take that not having a teacher will cause you to have the same difficulty as awheio. I never took lessons, nor studied theory or anything like that. Instead I explored my imagination on how to make a guitar do as much weirdness without using pedals and I also spent a large amount of time actually jamming and playing with people. infact I think that alone helped me be great at improv and what allowed me to come up with some of the odd and weirder shit that I do was basically working towards playing all fucked up then slowly going towards playing 'normal' So i tend to hear things a bit different in composition and how to naturally go from one idea to the next without it sounding all scatter splatter.
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awheio
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2011 2:00 am
Posts: 260
Location: United States
PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 7:30 am 
 

SLK is right. I rarely used a metronome, and never jammed or played at all with others. So my rhythm developed as a disaster. But if you practice self-critically and conscientiously, taking time to play with others, a teacher isn't necessary.

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ShaolinLambKiller
King Asshole

Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:10 pm
Posts: 11637
Location: United States
PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 12:51 pm 
 

yea it's never a def. route for someone. Things that worked for some people might turn others off completely. it's about finding out what works for you. Like how many people learned covers to improve their skills. I never did, it really held no interest to me. I've done things like pull up tabs and played the tabs through and it gave me enough information on how to play something if I wanted to know the techinque. I also liked watching videos of people performing. Not really as in practice and scales but actual riffs. Like when I got that Monolith of death tape from Cannibal Corpse I loved watching it and then pretty much mimmicking what I was seeing the guitarists were doing to achieve certain sounds.
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A bunch of mp3s is not a collection of anything.
http://www.cavepaints.com <--Horrid art and musics.
http://www.facebook.com/MaulerCustomCabs <--- huge heavy/loud boxes I build.
http://speedritualrecords.storenvy.com/ Check out my music here

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Celtic Frosted Flakes
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:49 am
Posts: 394
Location: Svea Rike
PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 1:37 pm 
 

Wow, thank you all. Very grateful for the answers, will be asking some questions here if I ever figure out any more ;)
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ShaolinLambKiller
King Asshole

Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:10 pm
Posts: 11637
Location: United States
PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 4:07 pm 
 

Glad we offered you some good help. :) at least some of us, I ain't saying I did anything good.
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A bunch of mp3s is not a collection of anything.
http://www.cavepaints.com <--Horrid art and musics.
http://www.facebook.com/MaulerCustomCabs <--- huge heavy/loud boxes I build.
http://speedritualrecords.storenvy.com/ Check out my music here

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Celtic Frosted Flakes
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:49 am
Posts: 394
Location: Svea Rike
PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2013 4:29 pm 
 

Well no need to be humble, you answered many of my questions and for that I thank you. ;)
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infinitenexus
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 2:35 am
Posts: 1939
PostPosted: Wed May 22, 2013 7:51 pm 
 

I've never had a single lesson. Not even a youtube one. I bought a guitar when I was 13 and started learning Metallica songs. 18 years later, bam, death metal for charity, hahaha.
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Celtic Frosted Flakes
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:49 am
Posts: 394
Location: Svea Rike
PostPosted: Thu May 23, 2013 12:51 pm 
 

Awesome. :)
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somefella
Metalhead

Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2008 11:57 pm
Posts: 2454
Location: Singapore
PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2013 12:17 am 
 

To speed things up, do get a teacher. It is possible to learn without one blah blah blah, but it's better to have one than not to. I wish I had gotten one when I was starting out.
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ShaolinLambKiller
King Asshole

Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:10 pm
Posts: 11637
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2013 1:18 am 
 

I'd also say no matter what you pick on how you learn. Don't get frustrated. not everyone can be blessed with spider fingers. And if things are really frustrating you, just move to something else for awhile and see if you like that more or you make more headway that way.
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A bunch of mp3s is not a collection of anything.
http://www.cavepaints.com <--Horrid art and musics.
http://www.facebook.com/MaulerCustomCabs <--- huge heavy/loud boxes I build.
http://speedritualrecords.storenvy.com/ Check out my music here

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Celtic Frosted Flakes
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:49 am
Posts: 394
Location: Svea Rike
PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2013 8:08 am 
 

I'm probably gonna get a guitar and a book, try to learn as much as I can, then get a teacher after a while if I stick with it. Thanks guys.
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Sick6Six
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2012 12:01 pm
Posts: 833
Location: United States
PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2013 11:53 am 
 

I've never posted in the musician forum so not really sure where to start, but this seems like a good place... I've played guitar on and off for years and never had any lessons. I learned how to play some of my favorite songs from tabs and by ear and I basically just make up my own riffs for fun. It's kind of sad that I will go 6+ months without ever touching my guitar and then when I pick it up I can shred out some disgusting black metal riffs... If I spent a fraction of the time playing guitar as I do on video games and listening to music I could be amazing. I often get frustrated with not being able to get the right sound from my amp or not knowing what notes and scales to use to elaborate on my riffs so I end up getting bored of just playing the same shit over and over. Also don't really know or have a great way to record or write down what I'm playing so I end up forgetting some amazing stuff I come up with. I feel like I'm to old to ever start a band or anything, but I would really like to start playing my guitar on a more regular basis and figure out a good and cheap way to actually record some of it. If anyone has any suggestions for recording and improving (besides taking lessons since I don't really have the time) let me know, thanks!
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Grave_Wyrm
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2012 5:55 pm
Posts: 2001
Location: In the Open Sea
PostPosted: Fri May 31, 2013 2:04 pm 
 

Celtic Frosted Flakes wrote:
I apologize if this is too trivial of a matter to even make a thread about.

The beginning is never trivial. Remember Bilbo.

A few tips I can think of are:
1) don't grip too tightly. With either hand. It really doesn't take a whole lot of energy to play guitar, and the less you expend in tension the more you have for endurance. Make your notes solid, but stay loose.
2) work with a metronome. Practice your scales, your warm ups all with a metronome. They're really cheap.
3) holding position. People hold their guitars differently, so try all kinds of positions. A lot of this depends on the shape of the body, but lengthy practice can end up causing cramping and aches that could worsen if you aren't playing in a comfortable stance. When playing standing, be sure to keep the guitar at a comfortable height, so that it doesn't strain your wrist or make you hunch over. Lots of people who look cool play in ways that could actually fuck up your body, so be careful.
4) Remember to breathe normally! It's easy to forget, oddly, while concentrating, so periodically take the thing off, do some shoulder wheels or a quick full body stretch and start again.
5) Take short breaks. Part of muscle training relies on rest, not to mention your calluses need time to build up, so the first week or so you might not get to play for as long every day as you'd otherwise like to, but it's better than powering through and then not being able to play much at all because your fingers are too raw.

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Against Such Things
Metalhead

Joined: Thu May 17, 2012 8:16 pm
Posts: 450
Location: Southern Maryland
PostPosted: Fri May 31, 2013 2:28 pm 
 

If you are interested in learning anything on the theory front, this will give you a crash course in the basics of whatever aspect you're interested in.

http://www.musictheory.net/lessons
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Big_Grand
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 11:59 pm
Posts: 432
PostPosted: Sat Jun 01, 2013 11:32 pm 
 

My peace of advice would be to either have a teacher, or even just hangout with someone at least once a week and jam or just talk about music. Being around that atmosphere with people playing music or just talking about playing is really what will drive you to continue practicing and playing. Even if you just walk into guitar center every once in a while, that will make you thirsty for playing, weather it's looking at some guy shredding by an amp, or it's you plugging into an amp and making the worst possible squeal a guitar could make and you striving to become a master to redeem yourself of the embarrassment.

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jedimasterhassan
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Mar 08, 2005 11:14 pm
Posts: 179
PostPosted: Thu Jun 06, 2013 5:05 pm 
 

it all depends on how quick you pick up on things. i got my first guitar and within 7 months i was shredding, writing my own solos, and playing stuff like priest/metallica/maiden. not horribly technical, but palm muting stuff a bit more on the intricate side. i was entirely self taught, and this was was years before youtube existed. in fact, when i started i was still using a 56k modem lol, so even if there was a place online to find instructional videos, it would've taken me all day just to watch one. the best advice i can give, is do exactly what you said, get a book to start out with, learn to read tablature, and watch lessons on youtube. if you know anyone who knows how to play, ask them to show you some basics, if someone did that with me when i started, i would've learned much, much quicker.

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