Newbie to electrics really struggling

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  • TTonyTTony Frets: 14793
    There's quite a few people down in your area ... @McToot is pretty well connected and might be able to point you in a good direction for tutors, informal meet-ups, and the like.
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  • McTootMcToot Frets: 1057
    TTony said:
    There's quite a few people down in your area ... @McToot is pretty well connected and might be able to point you in a good direction for tutors, informal meet-ups, and the like.

    Yes Indeedy.  West Sussex is well represented on here.  I'm down in Haywards Heath and then we have @Fez and @fastboy in Crawley and @flanging_Fred in Horsham.  There are more too, but I can't remember them off top of head. 

    I'm probably not the best to ask about tutors as I'm too bone idle to ever have had one, but there are some good ones about I think.  Feel free to send me a PM (click my name and hit the message button).  I also think that it's about time that I got my ass in gear to see one of the bands in which the above play.  I missed a couple this last weekend, but I too have young kids and getting a pass out isn't always easy.  BTW I also have a THR 10X and I love it...

     

    Beauty is in the eye of the beer holder


    My trading feedback  - I'm a good egg  ;) 

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  • Hi

    There are plenty of opportunities to get out and about in Crawley playing. There is a weekly open mike at the Windmill pub in Gossops Green, the 12 bar workshop in Northgate community centre on a tuesday night (I go to this when I can and is good for beginners, the stuff is quite simple most of the time and it's a very low stress environment), there's a more acoustic based jam session at the Emerald Club in Southgate. I think there are other jams around the place too, one in Crawley Down if I remember correctly. Other pubs have had jams from time to time in the past 'the black dog'/'the white knight'/'Dr samual Beckett/the apple tree' etc have all had things going on at one time or another.

    As for tutors, well I can only really point you at Danny Giles, a really top bloke, a genius player and a great teacher to boot.  You can learn enough from him in one lesson to keep you occupied for a whole year of practice if you like! Check out the Danny Giles Band and he's on facebook too.

    I hope that helps a bit. Get in touch if you want any more info.
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  • Thanks folks, I just have to grow a pair and get out there I guess :)
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  • SargeSarge Frets: 1520
    Wisdom awarded for honesty, admitting you need lessons isn't easy!
    As has been mentioned above, playing with other people helps LOADS! In a really short time.
    Also you mentioned playing the same things over and over, try not to get stuck in that loop, took me aeons to get past that.

    Good luck dude, it'll be a blast!
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  • Skodadad said:
    Thanks folks, I just have to grow a pair and get out there I guess :)
    Don't bother to 'grow a pair'. There really is no need to. There's been some AWFUL players turning up at these things over the years thinking they are the next Stevei Ray/Steve Vai/George Benson etc and yet I've never seen anyone being laughed at/humiliated/shunned or any other negative shit that the human mind shoves in your way of these things.  The muso's with a bad attitude seem to naturally drift away, everyone else just gets better.

    EVERYONE at these things had to go through it and can remember how nervous it was to start with. I doubt you will get anything other than supposrt and encouragement. Unless you're a dick. Which, from your posts, you clearly are not.


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  • TeetonetalTeetonetal Frets: 5933
    edited September 2015
    Skodadad said:
    On a side note the way to describe my problem with the amp is that any chords I play seem to blend together into a bit of a muddy mess. There is no real distinction between the notes played.
    Regards this. do these two things

    1. make sure your right hand (assume you are right handed) when you strum is only playing the strings that should be in the chord. For example the chord A doesn't have the Low E string, D doesn't have the low E & A strings. Practice playing only what you should.
    2. Spend some time each day picking the chords (pick each string individually, don't strum). Pay attention to detail. Are all the string ringing clear, are any dead or muted. Don't include strings that shouldn't be there ( just like step 1)
    If either of the above fail then you are not playing with good technique, you will be dominating chords with unwanted open notes and the crucial notes that determine major/minor get lost.

    Good luck

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  • Thanks Fred I'll definitely come along to one of these meetings, it's good to know I won't be the only one still learning. I think my biggest mistakes have been trying to buy skill which obviously only comes with patience and time. Some people just make it look so easy! @TEETONAL I think i know most chords and which strings to exclude but unfortunately my spacial awareness needs work. I often practice in the dark in the dining room of an evening, it seems to help if I can't see where I am moving my fingers thus forcing me to memorise the positions. I need a lot more practice though.
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  • JohnBJohnB Frets: 116
    For home use and occasional pub jams I really like my Orange Micro Terror - £150 including the 1x8 cab - it does benefit from a reverb pedal set to classic spring sound though

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  • blobbblobb Frets: 850
    If I was giving myself advice at the stage you are at, I would say get a tuner. Everybody thinks they can tune up, a tuner will get your ears aligned. Then learn to tune to a record, any record. Playing in the dark is also a great idea (or eyes closed at least), sounds like you will prgress quickly with your attitude. Have fun !
    Feelin' Reelin' & Squeelin'
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  • The Yamaha amp has a tuner built in, I did buy a cheap clip on one from ebay but they give different tunings so I am sticking with the Thr's interpretation
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  • blobbblobb Frets: 850
    Yeah, you don't have to believe the tuner. You're looking to train your ears, hence moving on to using a record. Ultimately, you will use the tuner to get close then your ears make it 'sound' right. Defacto, you start using your ears to play tunes / chords / licks that sound right. Guitar tuning (to a standard) is always a compromise but a great learning aid.
    Feelin' Reelin' & Squeelin'
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  • HAL9000HAL9000 Frets: 3935
    Hi @skodadad, I see you're fairly new to Crawley so you may or may not know The Music Company shop in Northgate parade. Anyway if you're still after a cheapish decent Strat they had about three Squier CV Strats last time I was there (although that is a few weeks back). The main guy in there waxes lyrical about how good they are. I'm also in Crawley (West Green) and have a MiM Strat at my gaff which you're welcome to try out. Also quite happy to meet up from time to time to help with any other guitar-playing issues - from your earlier posts it looks like your musical tastes are at least in the same ball park as mine. Just PM me if you're interested.
    It might look like I'm listening to you, but in my head I'm playing my guitar.
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  • Hey Hal9000, I did look for a music shop but was told that it had closed down and Brighton was the nearest one now. I managed to get myself a yamaha pacifica 112j and am picking up a squier strat later today :) it's not the cv so may not be great but you never know. I have been on a bit of a guitar buying mission lately as I had some cash from the sale of some of my last hobby. So I need to stop buying now and actually learn to play! The money had to be spent or else it would have gone on general household bills or at least that's my excuse. Appreciate the offer of help, do you ever go to any meetings?
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  • That is not correct.

    Hobgoblin music has closed and moved to Brighton.

    The Music Company is still open in the Northgate parade. It does have a number of CV squiers and also a bunch of SX and Vintage guitars that are decent budget guitars.
    From what I've seen TMC is a bit pricey being a local independent shop.

    If you can stretch the budget a bit Cash Converters in Crawley has a very nice Vintage (brand) Paradise Les Paul copy ATM.
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  • HAL9000HAL9000 Frets: 3935
    Skodadad;787582" said:
    Hey Hal9000, I did look for a music shop but was told that it had closed down and Brighton was the nearest one now. I managed to get myself a yamaha pacifica 112j and am picking up a squier strat later today :) it's not the cv so may not be great but you never know. I have been on a bit of a guitar buying mission lately as I had some cash from the sale of some of my last hobby. So I need to stop buying now and actually learn to play! The money had to be spent or else it would have gone on general household bills or at least that's my excuse. Appreciate the offer of help, do you ever go to any meetings?
    As Flanging Fred has pointed out, TMC is still open. Yes, slightly pricey but they will do a set-up when you buy and IIRC a 6 month service.

    I actually haven't been to any of the local meets but am hoping to get along to the Blues Workshop in Northgate Community Centre tomorrow (Tuesday) evening. It will be my first time so have no clue what I might be letting myself in for!
    It might look like I'm listening to you, but in my head I'm playing my guitar.
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  • @HAL9000 I'll try to come tomorrow night. If you want any more info about it all PM me. I've been going to this, on and off, for over a decade now!
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  • HAL9000HAL9000 Frets: 3935
    Thanks @Flanging_Fred. I wouldn't worry on my account as the unpredictable nature of my work means I may or may not be able to get there. However, a brief synopsis of what I should expect would be helpful.
    It might look like I'm listening to you, but in my head I'm playing my guitar.
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  • Basic format is pretty simple. We pick a song, everyone plays the rhythm together. Usually someone sings a couple of versus / chorus then we go around the room and everyone can take verse /some allotted bars to solo over if they want to.

    Doors open @7.30 but playing usually starts around 8pm.

    Oh, and there is tea and biscuits. Which probably explains why it's been so popular over the years.
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  • HAL9000HAL9000 Frets: 3935
    Many thanks. I assume there's subs to be paid? Also, what equipment do I need to take? Electric? Acoustic? Practice amp?
    It might look like I'm listening to you, but in my head I'm playing my guitar.
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  • Yeah we have to pay for the use of the hall but don't worry about that the first time you come.

    Equipment wise. If you bring an acoustic you won't be able to hear yourself! I'd recommend an amp of 10watts plus. Most people bring amps around 20watts, usually a small combo something like a fender blues junior or 30 watt Roland cube.

    I of course bring a 50w Marshall regularly, but I do know what the volume knob is for!

    A tuner is a pretty good idea too.
    A notepad and pen is good for writing down the chord progressions.

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  • SkodadadSkodadad Frets: 507
    edited September 2015
    I picked up the Squier Strat today, feels nice but was filthy and poorly setup (not that I'm an expert) stripped it all down and cleaned it all and it certainly sounds OK to my ears. Followed a few guides for setting intonation and string height adjustment and pretty pleased with it. Not sure if it's one of the good ones but probably good enough for me.

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  • HAL9000HAL9000 Frets: 3935
    One more question @Flanging_Fred...

    Could you confirm that the thing at Northgate Communitty Centre is definitely Tuesday nights? This seems to indicate Wednesday.
    It might look like I'm listening to you, but in my head I'm playing my guitar.
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  • Flanging_FredFlanging_Fred Frets: 1621
    edited September 2015
    Yup, definitely Tuesday night. That list is out of date AND incorrect! The Tanners arms in Horsham has shut down now, at least temporarily. The 12 bar has been Tuesday's for At least 10 years now.
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  • HAL9000HAL9000 Frets: 3935
    @skodadad - I've just PM'd you
    It might look like I'm listening to you, but in my head I'm playing my guitar.
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  • NiteflyNitefly Frets: 2091
    What a good thread - lots of encouragement for you, @skodadad !

    When I was learning all those years ago (although you never really stop, do you?) I found that I would have stages where I learned loads of stuff, then I'd have a plateau where I didn't learn anything new for ages, then another spurt of learning new stuff, etc.  It's probably not a bad thing,as you do at least consolidate the stuff you learn.

    Anyway, best of luck!
    Grown most uncommonly fat!
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  • SkodadadSkodadad Frets: 507
    edited October 2015
    Thanks @nitefly these guys are the best I have learned a lot on here. Met up with @HAL9000 tonight at a local blues group. It wasn't as overwhelming as expected. I was worried when I heard them all play I'd come home and give up but instead I am more inspired. Some amazing guitarists just playing and having fun. Having never heard anyone good play live before I was in awe and they made it look very easy. Was great to get them look over a couple of tele's I traded today and tell me which was best for me too. I think the tele is the guitar for me. I love the look and feel of it as well as the sound and I guess wanting to pick a guitar up is half of the battle. Still buzzing a bit so sorry to ramble on lol.
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  • andypandyp Frets: 188
    This thread is a really interesting read.

    @Skodadad I think we're in pretty similar situations. I started playing in January and have already got a lot more out of the guitar than I ever thought I would. I tried to learn a few times as a kind / teenager as my old man has played since he was 10 or 12 so I've always wanted to play too but could never get off the ground. A bit of nagging from workmates spurred me to try again in January (aged 35) and I've not been able to get enough of the guitar since. My old man got me started with some chords and advice and I found Justinguitar's beginner stuff really helped as I could just immerse myself in it in my own time and go and see my old man once a week for some tips and observations. Before long I'd got way further than I'd ever pictured I would have back in January but I'm still very much a beginner.

    I found after learning loads and loads in a really short time (say 3 months) that I felt like I plateaued massively for a while but I kept chipping away at scales and chord changes and trying to keep myself interested by learning parts of songs I really like. I found this happens every so often and it can feel like it takes ages to get out of each mini-rut but it always happens eventually, then I find I've jumped on a bit without realising. I saved a heap of songs and lessons to learn on YouTube and going back to some now that I found just out of reach a couple of months ago is showing me that I have learned more than I realised and my scales and chords are much better than they used to be. But the more you learn the less noticeable the progress is. Hang in there and keep at it.

    I have only really played with and in front of my old man but find that videoing myself on my phone is quite helpful too now and again as you can see what you're doing. I quite often go to pieces as soon as I hit the record button or sit down with my Dad though, it's frustrating. My old man's advice is replacing formal lessons for me so far, but these groups like you mention sound great. I'm not confident enough for that yet though, but I might look into it. I have a few mates that play so maybe we should do something together that would feel less intimidating. When I think about going to a group like that all I can picture is me pushing a creaky door open into an old gym hall with a group of experienced players sitting in a circle, turning round to see me stumble in and wondering "who's this chump?" :)


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  • Wow, I'm glad you made it to the '12 bar' last night and very happy you enjoyed yourself. Its a really great starting point for playing with other people. Great stuff.

    Sorry I couldn't be there myself as I had to do the dad bit and look after the kids while Mrs Fred is away. Hopefully it wasn't too intimidating, they are all a good bunch, even some of the more cumudgeonly ones are nice once you get to know them :)

    Hopefully I'll make it next week...
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  • SkodadadSkodadad Frets: 507
    edited October 2015
    @andyp to be honest I have been on lots of hobby forums over the years, I have even moderated a few. Never have I met a group of folk as friendly as guitarists. Tbh I think we all need other guitarists to push us on. I have seen a few knobs on here, generally they are opinionated and have all the gear but mostly they seem to buy to impress people. If I want to spend 10k to look good I'll get a nose job. The very few bad apples are easily ignored. The folk I met last night were a lovely bunch and the things they advised have really helped me, seeing them play has also motivated me. I'm not very good yet, I will be though one day!
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