Guitar Lesson 30: The importance of inspiration, motivation, immersion and enthusiasm to advance as a guitarist and avoid the ruts

In guitar lesson 30, I go to Dan with three questions looking for his guidance. Dan picks up on some very important points about the big picture, maintaining enthusiasm, the importance of live work and how to push yourself towards being an advanced player.  You will hear some jamming over a Danny Gatton style backing track, a blues shred idea and plenty of snippets from players as Dan shares the wisdom of his experience.  Hopefully, you will be as inspired and motivated by this episode as I am.

Main timings:

  • 02:22 – Introduction in which I ask whether we can look at some questions around bringing my guitar skills and motivation along
  • 07:34 – QUESTION 1: How do you get out of a rut?
  • 19:54 – Things to try which helped Dan
  • 27:57 – QUESTION 2 – what do you do if your practice time is limited?
  • 31:50 – You have to immerse yourself in the style.
  • 43:44 – Quick jam over a Country backing track in the style of Danny Gatton
  • 52:06 – QUESTION 3: How do you make the leap to advanced and how do you recognise that someone is an advanced player
  • 67:56 – Dan’s take on a blues lick based on a Marty Friedman idea
  • 71:48 – Final summarised advice: Work on one thing at a time & immerse yourself

Detailed timings:

  • 02:22 – Introduction – I ask whether we can look at some questions around bringing your skills along
  • 02:36 – Question 1: Advice on having the time to practice
  • 02:55 – Question 2: What skills do you think you need to be moving along from intermediate to advanced guitar
  • 03:14 – Question 3: What do you do to get you out of being in a rut?
  • 05:34 – What causes the ruts? Sometimes caused by doing the same thing and sometimes caused by being on a plateau
  • 07:34 – QUESTION 1: So how do you get out of a rut?
  • 09:52 – Advice on how to gain motivation – get yourself a good teacher
  • 11:12 – The Great Phil Hillborn
  • 12:25 – Advice to find something which excites you – licks, riffs and styles
  • 13:46 – Never forget that you’re a student of guitar
  • 13:50 – Never forget you can learn off anybody
  • 14:32 – I mention my motivation being the challenge to see how far I can take it
  • 15:54 – I talk about my 10 years of not playing guitar
  • 16:27 – Advice on motivation – Guitar is therapeutic & a stabilising force
  • 17:22 – The importance of live work and fun interactions with the crowd
  • 18:34 – Losing your mojo and holding onto your childlike enthusiasm is not always easy
  • 19:54 – 1) When you’ve not got a band to gig with, seek open mics
  • 21:06 – 2) Sometimes buying a piece of kit can be invigorating
  • 22:22 – 3) Trying another instrument
  • 22:24 – 4) Get yourself a teacher
  • 23:27 – 5) Changing things up – change where you are on the fretboard
  • 23:44 – 6) Try a different style
  • 24:09 – 7) Buy some techniques books
  • 25:24 – 8) Go to a gig
  • 27:57 – QUESTION 2 – what do you do if your practice time is limited?
  • 28:55 – Big Jim Sullivan on styles and session work
  • 31:50 – You have to immerse yourself in the style.
  • 34:48 – Andy Wood flatpicking
  • 43:44 – Quick jam over a Country backing track in the style of Danny Gatton
  • 48:41 – Playing the country rhythm
  • 52:06 – QUESTION 3: How do make the leap to advanced and how do you recognise that someone is an advanced player
  • 52:24 – Is Dave Gilmour an advanced player?
  • 54:43 – Dave Gilmour: on the turning away
  • 56:29 – Gary Moore: The messiah will come again
  • 59:21 – Dave Gilmour: Sorrow
  • 60:21 – An advanced player is someone whose personality comes through and they’re instantly recognisable
  • 61:48 – Dream theatre John Petrucci
  • 62:10 – Jeff Beck
  • 64:56 – Learn how to accept your playing is your unique sound
  • 67:56 – Dan’s take on the blues and Marty Friedman mucking up normal playing for interest
  • 69:55 – Explaining the lick: Blues mixed with sixes rhythms
  • 70:49 – Change the sound on your guitar to get a new idea
  • 71:48 – Final advice summary: Only work on one thing at a time and immerse yourself

Keep listening for more great lessons and advice from Dan as he teaches and mentors Gary to gain some skills and ideas.

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