Talent or good work ethic?

Discussion in 'The Sound Hound Lounge' started by Clifford-D, Feb 9, 2017.

Talent or Good Work Ethic?

Poll closed Feb 4, 2018.
  1. People are born with talent just waiting to be tapped into

    9 vote(s)
  2. People with a good work ethic are the better musicians/players

    38 vote(s)
  1. RustyAxe

    RustyAxe Member

    Feb 27, 2007
    I agree (now there's something you don't see every day on TGP ... ;) )
    bobcs71 likes this.
  2. jimijimmyjeffy

    jimijimmyjeffy Member

    Nov 16, 2015
    False dichotomy. Does not compute.
  3. muzishun

    muzishun Member

    Dec 9, 2014
    In this case re the quote, it just means "good ".
  4. amstrtatnut

    amstrtatnut Member

    Oct 16, 2013
    Northern CA
    All I can say is I couldnt really "see" the big picture of music for years. Im not sure I do now, but for years I worked on exercises that werent very musical. Id "copy" other players but, not quite get it. My time sucked and sometimes my intonation did too.

    It wasnt for lack of trying. Possibly focused on the wrong things. I rarely did the homework I was assigned cause I was busy trying to speed up my scales.

    I think if you work on learning/writing songs and building repertiore in whatever genre you enjoy, you will be better off. And practicing slowly.

    Just my .02
    9fingers likes this.
  5. Clifford-D

    Clifford-D Member

    Jan 8, 2007
    Close to the burn zone
    I heard that Frank took some bad acid and while in the hospital he conversed with Jimi in some acid reality. Apparently Jimi shared his mojo voodoo manness.

    Frank could play before but more average, and afterwards he became awesome, simply awesome. I for one believe Jimi talked to him. Not dead Jimi, rather a pure consciousness Jimi that lives in each of us.

    But I don't know, I didn't take the LSD.
    9fingers likes this.
  6. Marcfordsfuzz513

    Marcfordsfuzz513 Member

    Nov 26, 2010
    Its both...

    Anyone can play guitar, but you get what you put into it... That being said, people are just genetically better at certain things....
  7. LaceSensor1

    LaceSensor1 Member

    Apr 11, 2016
    Greenville, SC
    A little of both.

    But if you've ever worked in manufacturing, you are probably well acquainted with the grumpy old guy who knows everything about everything and baulks (spelling?) at most ideas the engineers come up with. Yet at the end of the day he is the one who keeps the place running like a whistle. When he goes on vacation or talks about retirement people get nervous.

    I think experience, in most cases, will prevail.
  8. The Captain

    The Captain Member

    Dec 5, 2007
    Purest BS. You have a very narrow idea of what "musical talent" is and are dissenting any number of amazing people work wide who make incredible music on instruments other than an American made electric guitar and amplifier.
  9. Thedude99

    Thedude99 Member

    Feb 3, 2015
    It's both.

    Hard work can overcome a lack of talent.

    Talent can get you to the same place with less work. But there is a danger with things coming too easy to fall into the trap of not working hard enough.

    People that truly excel are those that possess both.
  10. Guitarworks

    Guitarworks Member

    Oct 8, 2007
    Talent is only the gift, the natural skill, or advantage given to you at birth; the automatic love and enjoyment of the task that makes it a pleasure. Hard work is putting all of that to good use.

    NHL player and announcer Brian Engblom once summed it up nicely: "Hard work will always beat talent, if talent does not work hard."
    Emigre likes this.
  11. Thedude99

    Thedude99 Member

    Feb 3, 2015
    The average dirt poor musician from the favela's in Brazil, the streets of Cuba or the slums in Bangalore could play circles around the average TGP subarban basment dweller any day of the week. They spend their time playing, not chasing the tonez and chatting on the internet.

    There is a strong parallel with sports here. I know people involved in scouting at the highest levels of European soccer. I've been told they find the best players from the poor countries/communities because the rich kids are more worried about playing sports on their phones or a PlayStation, and the poor kids don't have the same distractions. There is also a serious difference in work ethics.
    boo radley likes this.
  12. Holzar88

    Holzar88 Silver Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2008
    Colorado Springs
    A story ...

    My mother was a professional pianist. She worked for nearly 20 years as the staff accompanist for the string department at a mid-sized private university. Growing up, we always had musicians in and out of the house that she was rehearsing with. (Oh that I could have appreciated it at age eight or nine; ironically, I never learned to play piano.)

    I once asked her this very question, talent or work. She said that with rare exceptions, the hard-working students she played for usually became better musicians after four years than those who came in with raw talent. But she also noted that every so often someone would come along who had both raw talent and a willingness to work very hard, and that they were some of the best. But she said there weren't very many of those, and that many of those with more natural talent ultimately plateaued because they thought that their talent meant that they didn't have to work as hard.

    As for me, I have neither talent nor a work ethic when it comes to guitar, but I like making my noises nonetheless. Cheap therapy. All three of my children are taking piano, and it's amazing what they can do at 6, 8 and 10. They're just starting to figure out that they're old man's just a poser with lots of distortion. :) But, I digress ...
    jomac and Tim Bowen like this.
  13. loudboy

    loudboy Member

    Nov 3, 2003
    Sedona, AZ
    Here's how it works out when you've got both:

    At 9YO, obviously a great voice, but not really developed technically:

    At 12YO, 3 years of working her butt off is starting to pay off:

    Then there's this:

    Holzar88 and Jester like this.
  14. Tone Loco

    Tone Loco Silver Supporting Member

    Apr 20, 2004
    They have tests for various aspects of music like pitch discernment, rhythmic recognition, hand/eye coordination, melodic memory, etc. And just because you are more "musical" than the average person it doesn't mean you are equally suited for all instruments. Some people luck onto the right one, some probably don't. A "born trombone player" with an embouchure and pitch sensitivity that other young trombonists his/her age would love to possess, isn't necessarily a born guitar player and if not it would probably take more work to get as good as someone who has the right equipment from birth.

    And obviously someone who has all kinds of manual dexterity and quickness might have to work really hard on the ear/rhythmic/melodic/musical side of things so as not to just be a very fast picker/shredder with nothing of any musical interest to say on the guitar.
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2017
  15. Z*Z*Z

    Z*Z*Z Member

    Feb 22, 2011
    Zrenjanin, Serbia, Europe
    When someone tells Im talented it generally means that I need to practice more or just push the envelope a little more.
  16. Emigre

    Emigre Member

    Jan 18, 2017
    I know what talent looks and more importantly, feels like. If I say so myself, I'm pretty talented in my primary occupation and for decades my primary hobby as well.

    I discovered this path when I was 12 and ever since, that's all I ever wanted to do. I put in an obsessive amount of work - sometimes straight weeks of 16 hour days. The difference talent made was first, that none of it ever seemed like work, and second, it always seemed effortless and natural. Every progress, every unlocked level, door, and mystery solved was littered with lightbulb moments. Just natural. As this was before the Internet, and before I was old enough to take up formal study, I had to work it out myself, from little tidbits in books and magazines.

    Later at uni everything around my chosen topic just seemed effortless and easy and I ran rings around my fellow students. I was ahead even some of my teachers.

    Sure enough I put in a frightening amount of work, and had a laser like focus - nothing else mattered, no distractions, no alternatives, no fall back plan. Talent made it all seem easy and fun.

    Music sure is fun for me but it ain't easy in that way.
  17. Shiny McShine

    Shiny McShine Member

    Apr 10, 2005
    Those poll percentages really tell a lot about the musicality of the TGP members.

    Of course, the best thing is to have natural intuitive gifting and a severe issue with self worth. That combination makes for the really compulsive practicing necessary to achieve anything extraordinary.
    9fingers likes this.

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice