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#527075 - 03/02/19 12:21 PM [Woodshedding - Learning to Play!] How to use BB to improve your guitar playing skills
Registered: 07/10/15
Posts: 467
Loc: Miami, Florida
Planobilly Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 07/10/15
Posts: 467
Loc: Miami, Florida
Hi,

This is just one of the many ways of improving your playing skills using BB, plus it is fun. This is mainly aimed at learning how to play lead lines over a piece of music for people just learning.

1. Find a real track you like and load the demo song. Better if it is not too fast.
2. Put it in the key of C. It will just be less trouble to think about.
3. Listen to the whole song.
4. High lite and loop the first two to four bars so they play over and over.
( lets assume a chord progression of |C|A minor|F|G| for example)
5. Go from the most simple to the more complex.. just play the root note of each chord on the first beat of each measure first. Then the root and the octave.
6. It is critically important that you play in time no matter how simple or complex. Turn on the metronome if it helps.
7. Start a line on the root note of the chord and end where it sounds good to you.
8. Go find out why it sounded good. For example did you end on a note in the C scale? Was the ending note one of the notes in the chord?
9. Play some really bad sounding notes and figure what and where they are and why they sound bad. If you can not figure it out ask some here.

So...what does this teach you?

Where the root note of a chord is on the guitar. Learning the fret board,
Where the octave note is in relation to the root.
Do this for very long and you will start to see patterns on the neck.
Without much understanding of music theory what notes sound good together.
The importance of landing on certain notes when the next chord arrives.
How to play lead lines over a chord progression.
The fact that it is less important what notes you play if you start and end on the correct notes.

Other things you should have hanging on your wall and it does not matter if you currently understand this or not...you will sooner or later.
Major and minor scale charts.
Circle of Fifths chart
Chord charts for guitar
Photo of your favorite band or guitar player

All this is much less trouble to do than to explain. lol

Cheers,

Billy

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#527084 - 03/02/19 01:27 PM [Woodshedding - Learning to Play!] Re: How to use BB to improve your guitar playing skills [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 04/07/13
Posts: 4991
Loc: South Carolina
Charlie Fogle Online   content
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Registered: 04/07/13
Posts: 4991
Loc: South Carolina
Sounds like fun. I'll give it a try. I've started each of the last several years with the goal the particular year I will concentrate on learning better guitar skills. Each of the last several years I've never started. This year may be the golden goose with your instructions.



Thanks for posting.
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#527121 - 03/02/19 03:55 PM [Woodshedding - Learning to Play!] Re: How to use BB to improve your guitar playing skills [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 07/10/15
Posts: 467
Loc: Miami, Florida
Planobilly Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 07/10/15
Posts: 467
Loc: Miami, Florida
Hi Charlie,

I hope you find it fun and useful. It may seem pretty elementary to an accomplished guitar player. I think it may be more difficult than meets the eye to play very slowly in exact time. Even simple stuff can and does present challenges for anyone.

I still struggle with identifying every note on the guitar neck. Yes, given a second or two I can figure it out. That does not get one very far as tempo increases.

I was using HSBEV Demo (All Real Tracks Country with Held simple Bass). Key of C 85BPM.

As it has a pretty classic Key of C progression, it is easy to play and understand and stays in key.

After messing around with the root note starting points I described, one can go on to use notes from several common scales to form melodies.

C Major Scale C,D,E,F,G,A,B,C

Chords in C major..C,Dm,Em,F,G,Am,Bdim Just so everyone understands, these are the chords that only contain the notes in the C scale

G Mixolydian G,A,B,C,D,E,F,G (Same as C major, just starting on G)

A minor pentatonic A,C,D,E,G

A Natural Minor Scale A,B,C,D,E,F,G,A Also called the relative minor of C major

As you look at the scales and chords above, it is apparent they all contain the same or sub sets of the same notes.

Another thing that happens when doing this sort of thing is one becomes able not only to recognize the note name on a certain fret but correlate the name and position with the sound. At that point your hand knows just where to go to make that sound and you don't even have to think about it.

Sorry, I did not mean to get to deep into theory....lol

I remember a concert piano player who lived above me in France. She use to practice twice a day for one and a half hours. She would always start out with simple things slowly and progress to crazy fast complex stuff.

I put some sheet music from Robert Johnson on her piano one day. It was scary what came out of that piano. I felt like we must be standing at the crossroads and the devil was about to show up any second now....lol

Cheers,

Billy


Edited by Planobilly (03/02/19 03:56 PM)

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#527134 - 03/02/19 05:33 PM [Woodshedding - Learning to Play!] Re: How to use BB to improve your guitar playing skills [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 07/10/15
Posts: 467
Loc: Miami, Florida
Planobilly Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 07/10/15
Posts: 467
Loc: Miami, Florida
So here is a little sound bite of what I was talking about. C,Am,F,G
Single notes, Root and octave, three or four note solo starting on the root, slightly more complex solo stuff, Screwing up the timing towards the end...lol

https://soundcloud.com/planobillydfw/simple-solo-ideas


Cheers,

Billy


Edited by Planobilly (03/02/19 05:38 PM)
Edit Reason: To dumb to get it correct the first time

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#527268 - 03/03/19 04:15 PM [Woodshedding - Learning to Play!] Re: How to use BB to improve your guitar playing skills [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 04/07/13
Posts: 4991
Loc: South Carolina
Charlie Fogle Online   content
Veteran

Registered: 04/07/13
Posts: 4991
Loc: South Carolina
Thanks for providing the sound bites. They are helpful. I hope I can post some progress in the not to far future using your suggestions.
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#527295 - 03/04/19 03:08 AM [Woodshedding - Learning to Play!] Re: How to use BB to improve your guitar playing skills [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 10/03/17
Posts: 153
Loc: Ohio
DSM Offline
Apprentice

Registered: 10/03/17
Posts: 153
Loc: Ohio
Timing is everything. Even the wrong note played at the right time is better than being out of time.

I mostly use BIAB as backing tracks.

The above suggestions are right on.

...Deb

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#527311 - 03/04/19 05:51 AM [Woodshedding - Learning to Play!] Re: How to use BB to improve your guitar playing skills [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 07/10/15
Posts: 467
Loc: Miami, Florida
Planobilly Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 07/10/15
Posts: 467
Loc: Miami, Florida
Being able to place a note consistently at an exact place is one of the most important skill set one can acquire. I practice with a metronome. I also practice with just a drum track. When I get tired of that I practice with a backing track of some kind.

Band In A Box offers a lot of control with backing tracks of your own creation. You can make them as simple or complex as you like. I sometimes loop only one or two measures with the same chord and play various lead lines over that. I also put on a demo song, usually at random, and play the chords. This forces me to learn chords I don't normally play.

I find it amazing how difficult it is to play precise note values. Try playing 16th notes in time at 120 BPM. This is one of the common standards required for graduation from a place like North Texas University.

Fortunately we have a community here that is very supportive and no one is likely to take exception to my inability to play well. That makes for a very comfortable learning environment.

Cheers,

Billy

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#527377 - 03/04/19 01:01 PM [Woodshedding - Learning to Play!] Re: How to use BB to improve your guitar playing skills [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 10/09/16
Posts: 570
Loc: Central Ohio
edshaw Offline
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Registered: 10/09/16
Posts: 570
Loc: Central Ohio
Thank you for taking the time to writes down those thoughts. I have wondered sometimes what might be out there in the BiaB universe of learning to play guitar. Indeed, it takes me back a few years to a coffee shop scene where a younger man used to set up and play jazz guitar to BiaB backing tracks. Some of us were playing in bands. We were fascinated and used to joke, Band in a BOX, is that it? (Casting furtive glance at drummer) From that humble origin begins a a journey.....
One of things that keeps it going is the adventurous spirit of the PGM Co. and the musicians attracted to this forum. By that, I mean, keeping options open ended, avoiding being overly critical, and eagerness to sieze the opportunities to expand the development of musical horizons as they come up.


Edited by edshaw (03/04/19 05:09 PM)
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#529576 - 03/20/19 05:34 PM [Woodshedding - Learning to Play!] Re: How to use BB to improve your guitar playing skills [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 08/29/14
Posts: 4821
Loc: North Carolina
David Snyder Offline
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Registered: 08/29/14
Posts: 4821
Loc: North Carolina

I started on classical guitar when I was a kid and play scales with ami on my right hand as opposed to a pick. When I teach guitar I am REALLY BIG on scales, precision and accuracy at the point of attack when the fingers hit the string. Also practicing until the left hand falls off, practicing over, and over, and over. You have to master those scales. I find that a certain point you see the "math" on the fret board and then it lights up in your head. After that, you don't really need to think so much. I love to find a good progression, plug it in to BIAB and just let 'er rip. So much fun.

Your exercises are great. I will take them a spin next time I am on a jamathon.

smile
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