So this is my first post and will probably be the only one reading it, but it feels nice that maybe someone may read it and like it.
Basically, what I've decided to do is use this blog as a bit of a Journal as I start to actively play guitar again after many years. I started playing guitar back in 1991. I devoured every bit of guitar info and practiced religiously. After getting good enough to play with friends, I joined a band that achieved mild local success and then disbanded in 1996. Since then, my guitar sat idly by while I began a career as a Film Editor, until the last few years when I began to take interest in the guitar again.
I was always frustrated with my playing ability. It seemed to me that playing the guitar was much easier for other people. They seemed to pick up things faster and play better than me. I always put it up to the fact that I'm left handed but play righty. This, of course is ridiculous. Anyway, after plateau-ing for a few years then not playing at all for a while, my guitar skills worsened quite a bit.
I'm back in it now and since there are many tools available now that were not readily available when I was starting out, such as THE INTERNET, I want to share a couple of useful tools and tips that have helped me progress tremendously as a guitar player in the last few months.
1. Getting back to basics and starting out very slowly. Really analyze your picking and fretting. Slow everything down and see what your weaknesses are and focus on those points. It's a bit frustrating at 1st but after a couple of days you will see big improvements in your accuracey and speed. It almost happens unconciously when you start to play things you've been playing for years. You will definitely notice a cleaner, effortless technique developing.
2. Guitar Pro Software - This is one of the most ingenious programs to have ever come out for a musician. I find playing along with songs while looking at TABS very frustrating!!! Having to Stop and Start the track losing your place, etc. This software solves almost all those problems. And best of all there are hundreds if not THOUSANDS of GUITAR PRO ready tabs on UG.com. What i really like most about Guit Pro is the ability to play the song at different speeds, isolate certain instruments, and LOOP!!! (which is the best part). The looping Function also has a speed trainer setting so it will play the Bars you've selected over and over increasing the speed by a % set by the user. It's really incredible and well worth the money.
3. Guitar Speed Trainer Software - A lot of people dont really like this software but I think it's a great tool. It's more of a BOFLEX workout program for your hands. Try it out, I believe there is a DEMO for free. I think its a great way to track your progress as a player with its charts and graphs.
4. Last but not least, the SPEED MECHANICS FOR LEAD GUITAR Book, I LOVE THIS BOOK!!! I wish I bought this years ago! The best guitar book if you're intersted in strengthening your hands and letting it rip. I've bough a lot of books in my day but this is by far the BEST i've ever bought. GO OUT AND BUY IT NOW!!!!!!
Another notable but not essential book/Series are the Guitar Grimoire Books, I especially like the Excercise Book with the Green Cover. DONT BUY THE DVD's they are ridiculous!
That's it for now. In the following posts I will be listing specific licks and exercise and things that have really helped me out.