What's your practice routine?

Discussion in 'Playing and Technique' started by esptiger, Jan 25, 2012.

  1. esptiger

    esptiger Member

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    Just wanna know what TGP does for practice routines. I do 1 hour of sight reading, 30 Minutes of String Skipping licks (using metronome), 30 Minutes of Scales, 1 Hour of song practice, then another hour of jamming over a backing track, then another hour of usually what ever I want (Theory, Chords, etc.)
     
  2. rob2001

    rob2001 Member

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    Unless I'm figuring something out or writing a part, I just play.
     
  3. CowTipton

    CowTipton Member

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    If I'm lucky I have 30-40 minutes to work on learning a new song and it's usually sometime after midnight.
     
  4. dsw67

    dsw67 Supporting Member

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  5. JonR

    JonR Member

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    I have no practice routine. I don't practise. (I'm not recommending this course of inaction, just answering your question.;))

    Of course, I play (although not regularly). Like rob2001, I will be a bit more organised when learning a new tune, if it requires techniques I'm not yet on top of. (Although, being lazy, I tend to avoid tunes that present too much technical difficulty. Luckily the music I enjoy doesn't generally fall into that category.)
     
  6. esptiger

    esptiger Member

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    How's that schedule working out for ya?
     
  7. GovernorSilver

    GovernorSilver Member

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    On another forum, somebody will occasionally post a backing track, then forumites overdub solos and such and post that.

    I decided to give one of those a go and thus preparing my submission has been the focus of my practice these past couple of weeks. First priority was to learn the melody line of the tune and practice that up to the speed of the backing track. Next has been to prepare soloing ideas. I'm not writing out the entire solo. OTOH, mindless noodling over a backing track never did anything for my development either. What seems to work best for me is a mix of prepared ideas and improvisation. One prepared phrase I want to use is something I never played before, and executing it at the speed of the track has presented some challenges to my technique. I didn't lift the phrase off of a specific solo, but have heard it used numerous times by various players on various instruments. I practice the phrase with a metronome at a tempo quite a bit slower than the track tempo.

    For warmup I am alternate-picking an open string (randomly chosen) in quarter notes, 9th notes, then 16ths with the metronome set to track tempo.
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2012
  8. djdrdave

    djdrdave Member

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    That's nice you get 5 hours of time to play, I am mostly lookign at a maximum of an hour a night during the week and more on weekends, maybe 2 hours each day on a weekend.
     
  9. esptiger

    esptiger Member

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    I find if I want to seriously get on a professional level of playing (which is what I want to achieve) I find myself practicing between 5-10 hours a day, I am not joking.
     
  10. rob2001

    rob2001 Member

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    It's probably debatable. I'm not sure practice definitely means you will play at a pro level.

    Skill and technique have little to do with being a "pro". Thats assuming you have achieved reasonable control of the instrument.

    But if you want to be the next Steve Vai or the next EJ, by all means have at it. I don't think anyone can achieve those levels of playing without intense practice.
     
  11. JonR

    JonR Member

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    That's the kind of commitment you need to get to professional level, but make sure it's varied and constructive practice. (The list you mentioned earlier looks good, but make sure it includes listening and copying, maybe transcription too.)
    And remember that professionalism requires a whole lot more than musical skill. You need to be able to (and happy to) sell yourself in the market place. You need to be adaptable and reliable, well organised, and get on easily with people - which is why closeting yourself away with guitar all day (every day) may not be the best practice.
    If you're planning on becoming a star in your own right (as opposed to a working session player or sideman), those interpersonal skills may be less important. You just need tremendous confidence and chutzpah, total self-belief. You need to put your music above all personal relationships. And you need to get lucky. Oh, and being good-looking wouldn't do any harm... ;)
     
  12. whiteop

    whiteop Senior Member

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    I just play using backing tracks or an RC-2 to keep my timing and phrasing on spot. Similar to using a metronome because there's a drum beat.
     
  13. esptiger

    esptiger Member

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    Although this is true, Buckethead locked him self and room and played for hours and now he sells out concerts and has a plentiful supply of music. However since the man is 100 percent anti-social I think it may have benefitted his playing.
     
  14. Clifford-D

    Clifford-D Member

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    1. Wake up
    2. think guitar all day including picking it up and playing
    3. go to bed

    repeated for 48 yrs and counting
    (started when 10)
     
  15. DGTCrazy

    DGTCrazy Moderator de Emporio Staff Member

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    Usually 30-60 minutes every evening (4 nights a week), comprised of basic scales and licks, review of the current set-list, and prepping for new tunes. Full band practice on Wednesday or Thursday, gigs on the Weekend!
     
  16. Jday413

    Jday413 Member

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    1.Warm up with scales and a metronome.
    2. Improvisation over a backing track. ii-V7-I, blues progression, or standard.
    3. Transcribing. Generally just something that's caught my ear recently.

    Depending on the urgency, the actual preparation of performance material will fall before any of those. But, when I've got the margin, those three things happening generally help keep my wheels on.
     
  17. Seraphine

    Seraphine Member

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    I know right where you're at man, having been there a number of times... Putting the truck loads of time and your life into this is wise... especially if you love music and the gtr.

    I don't know if you have or are spending any time in bands or how many bands you have gone through etc.. But for some reason I already think you're a professional... or in my book.. a much better term a Musician... a GTR player.

    Yes we learn forever and in music.. being it is as infinite as any lifetime... we always learn, but I have the impression you are there...

    As to what you want to do with it all? I would suggest changing your practice drastically... a new year and new change and new direction... Move on now. Keep the scales and half the theory, because use it or lose it... and it's good to KNOW THE FRETBOARD like the back of your hand, as a good Indian does...

    I used to spend 5 to 6 hours a day playing to incidental and soundtrack music in tv shows and films.. This way I killed two or three birds with practice sessions... The music changes and contains sooo many moods.. feels.. and impressions etc and such "thinking" or approaches to music helps when playing or composing...

    Such practice also requires an ear.. so you will learn to listen because what the music is doing or going to do is unknown, though you will get very adept at anticipating... Improvisation and anticipation / intuition.. are involved and crafted as you will become very good at playing to most ANY kind of music.... Learn to turn on a dime in your playing.

    What might seem a pragmatic method is to compose... write your own music.. the work in composition IS PRACTICE. I feel you can play well enough already to DO THE MUSIC YOU WANT NOW... sorry.. I'm really whisperin'...

    Anyway... Have you been having similar ponderin's? You know there's way too many standard musicians out there... get out and free yourself from Theoretical Music and play it live in a band that wants to Rock eh? Remember this ... Man was NOT made for music theory... Music theory was made for MAN... so do what you want with it, not what it wants you to do....
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2012
  18. arthur rotfeld

    arthur rotfeld Member

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    Never cared for a routine, not that it's a bad thing. Could be great, I suppose.


    Today I did a bit of transcribing, a couple of bebop licks in various keys, some improv based on those, then free playing over funk grooves, with a slight focus on wide-range ideas.

    Next couple of days will involve working on acoustic parts and vocals for an original project.
     
  19. dustinblatnik

    dustinblatnik Member

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    A practice routine can really help those of us pursuing a higher 'level' or 'ability' on the guitar. Great comments guys!

    I'd like to emphasize... making music with other musicians is a big part of the puzzle. You can learn a ton from jamming with guys who are much better than you. And you can learn from others who aren't as musically skilled.

    Don't forget to take a day off from practicing every now and then. Just like a body-builder, your muscles need time to recover and strengthen.

    Lastly, "mutants" like Vai, Satch, etc... are equally known for their creativity and song-writing as their guitar "playing" :)

    ...now, I must return to practicing modes!
     
  20. esptiger

    esptiger Member

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    I am not on a professional level yet, that's why I practice 10 hours a day or so. The style that I play consists of a lot of fast picking and heavy grooves. I am trying to aspire to go to Berklee College of Music and end up making neoclassical shred albums. And of course being a very versitaile musician in Boston :) I wish I could play full songs by the masters (Satriani, Malmsteen, Blackmore etc.) but I just learn licks I really want to be able to learn these full tunes!
     

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