Whether you’re playing the guitar for your own entertainment or for a living, chances are, if you are passionate, you want to level up when it comes to playing this stringed instrument. Needless to say, there are hundreds of tips as to how to be better at playing the guitar, some tips may work for you and some may not. For this article, however, we will tackle the most essential ones.
So, for those of you trying to step up your musician resume game and for those of you who are aspiring to be the next Slash, these are the tips that might just help you.
- Practice A LOT.
You’ll definitely see this advice everywhere and that’s because it works. Over-practice makes perfect and if it doesn’t, at least it makes you better. By spending a lot of time practicing, you are getting your brain used to how guitar playing works and because of that, the act becomes close to automatic and so, it becomes much easier for you to play.
- Learn techniques.
One reason why expert guitarists sound amazing is because they are well-versed when it comes to guitar playing techniques. And so, if you want to be close to their level, you can do so by learning techniques such as palm muting, hammer ons, harmonics, vibrato, etc. These are the techniques that are essential for impressive guitar performances.
- Learn scales.
For those who aspire to play guitar solos or for those guitar players who simply want to easily move around the frets, learning the scales is very crucial. Go for pentatonic major and minor scales in all positions. This is so that moving around for solos will become easy as pie. If possible, learn to play the scales not just forward but also backwards.
- Read tabs.
Although chords are much easier to learn, if you truly want to be a next-level guitarist, learning tabs is the way to go. Tabs are the guitarist’s music sheet. Check out the tabs for some of the classic songs by Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, John Mayer, and the like.
- Study sounds.
Spend time listening to guitar solos as this is one way to become sensitive and more familiar with different types of guitar sounds. With guitar, it’s very important for you to have great listening skills.
- Play with others.
A great way to improve your guitar skills is by playing with better guitarists. You’ll be able to observe their techniques and they’ll be able to give you some tips as well. Other than playing with co-guitar players, you should also venture out to playing with other musicians. In many cases, guitarists do not play alone. They usually play with other instruments for accompaniment; thus, it’s good to get used to playing with a drummer, pianist, singer, etc.
Don’t be afraid to explore the guitar world. You may experiment with amplifiers for guitars and get to know how they work. Or you may also explore playing different types of guitar to know which interests you best.
The Bottom Line
At the end of the day, all these tips are only possible if you have the determination and perseverance in practicing. Do not give up if it doesn’t sound right; instead, keep trying. And although practicing a lot is essential, don’t forget to take breaks as well.