For those who have converted from blues to shred

Discussion in 'The Sound Hound Lounge' started by LoopyBullet, Mar 31, 2015.

  1. LoopyBullet

    LoopyBullet Supporting Member

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    So I guess things are coming full circle nowadays. I usually think of "how long did it take to shred" threads as some of the first things people ask when they start playing. I started guitar by admiring certain shredders, and then found my way into loving blues, rock (and the typical guitar heroes of Clapton, Hendrix, SRV, etc), and jazz. I've recently been listening to Paul Gilbert, Jason Becker, Al Di Meola, and Eric Johnson.

    I don't consider myself a "shredder" and don't really think it's a desirable title, but I'm just wondering for those metal guys out there - how long did it take you to develop some speed on the guitar? I think my muscle memory is heavy into SRV, and it tends to get old even though I can play it fast in blues terms. When I try to do anything else, I notice my speed dramatically declines. Really, it's because I've never practiced in a whole lot of other styles and realize it'll take a lot of work to break out of that box.

    I know practicing every day for 30 minutes versus every day for 5 hours is a big difference. I'm just curious to hear how persistent you had to be to really develop yourself into a competent player in...more shreddy terms. Haha.
     
  2. americananalog

    americananalog Member

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    From "Listen to the Flower People" to "Smell The Glove".
    It's a growth process, it's all about evolving at your own pace.
     
  3. filtersweep

    filtersweep Member

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    Blues is often more 'lick' based. It is easy to burn in these habits, but difficult to break them. I had a great instructor years ago who taught me that there was more to blues than pentatonic scales- to use my pinky, etc. Do you play patterns anchored in one position? Or do you play up and down the neck? There are all sorts of videos on you tube that inspire new ways of thinking. It is just as easy to fall into the trap of just playing fast scales.
     
  4. Millul

    Millul Member

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    Well, 30 mins every day, if done right, can get you to a pretty decent point in 1-2 years.
    You won't be able to cover "Metropolis Pt.1" though...

    I remember the only time I tried to practice 5+ hours a day: I could actually SEE myself progress, but it lasted all of 3 days - as much as I love playing, that level of dedication was out of my reach - but it's needed to get to the top of the game.

    Keep in mind, these guys are pushing YOUR boundaries, not necessarily THEIRS...I think they always keep some form of "margin" in their playing, so as not to fall "off the cliff" live...so, they probably are even more than proficient than they display!
     
  5. Millul

    Millul Member

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    Oh, and shred can be as much "lick based" as blues (and you can shred the blues, as Bonamassa can attest), they're only different licks.
     
  6. Che_Guitarra

    Che_Guitarra Member

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    Interesting thread.

    When I first started jamming with others (just entering high school) I couldn't avoid but learning the thrash metal of Slayer, Metallica, Pantera if I wanted to jam with others of my same age. But during this stage of my life I was also quaffing a solid diet of hardcore blues - absorbing the mysticism and unquantifiables associated with the genre... in my wider circles I was the only one who knew Son House from Willie Dixon from Elmore James. And for ten years it was my secret love.

    Nowadays, I wouldn't blink an eyelid if I was told I could never hear another straight blues album again. But i'd be devastated if I were forced to vanquish Reign in Blood, Master of Puppets or Cowboys From Hell from my listening/practise repertoire. As of right now there is no greater musical joy in my life than finding others who I jam out a rendition of Cemetery Gates, One, or Seasons In The Abyss with.

    I'd honestly say if I can manage a few hours practise each week I can maintain an impressive/flashy level of guitar mastery... but i've never attempted to accost the ability of guys like Paul Gilbert, Steve Vai or Buckethead - I don't think you can ascend to this level of virtuosity without a serious daily time commitment.
     
  7. Sheherezadeh

    Sheherezadeh Member

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    I grew up listening to shredders, but could never get my chops anywhere near that level. So for years I was more of a folk and rock/blues player, spending much more time on fingerpicking than anything very technical. Over the last few years as I've been playing a little more seriously again I've seen my skills increase to levels beyond what I was capable of before. I still can't alternate pick very well, but I can do much more with various legato licks which can serve a similar function.
     
  8. Echoes

    Echoes Senior Member

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    You simply must put in the hours...and do it every day. There is no secret or short cut.

    Try picking trills ...then practice your scales with one picked note per then double pick each note, then triplets, then pick four per note...try picking without anchoring your wrist. Try picking with the slight motion from your elbow instead of you thumb or wrist...

    There are countless things you can practice and try ...I used to practice 8-10 hours a day...but now, being an old man I put in maybe an hour a day....it's like 'life support' so I can play most basic and some pro level material etc...I couldn't hang with guys who put the hours in right now and neither can anyone else....
     
  9. docgorpon

    docgorpon Member

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    Where have you been all my life? I've been going through the same transformation as the OP, and this is something I just tried on my morning practice. I can feel a barrier being broken. Seems counter intuitive, so I never tried it.
     

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