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Author Topic: Problem playing to friends  (Read 12444 times)

Memory Lane Jr

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Problem playing to friends
« on: September 30, 2011, 02:29:56 AM »
Most of you guys will probably laugh at this one but it is a bit of a problem for me, I do not have any guitar playing friends & just play for my own enjoyment at home, I have only been playing for around two years now & I can jam out some fair blues riffs, my problem is I choke up when anybody asks me to play something in front of them ( Like they rock up to the front door & I am getting stuck in to something, they say  wow, they come in & I am all fingers & thumbs and I sound like s##t) it is very frustrating because I am not that bad a player, I am not a Robin Trower I know that, but I love playing & put in a hour or two practise every day.
Anybody got any suggestions apart from a few shots of Rum?????
Cheers.  :-[

hillbilly-joe

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Re: Problem playing to friends
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2011, 02:38:30 AM »
Have a few more shots of Rum then. I too just toy around on the guitar for my own pleasure and I need to have some Sapporo beer or Kirin beer

VikingBlues

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Re: Problem playing to friends
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2011, 05:43:37 AM »
Most of you guys will probably laugh at this one
Not me - I know the problem only too well.  :-[

Anybody got any suggestions apart from a few shots of Rum?????
If it's something you've not done yet maybe as a halfway house try posting up audio recordings of yourself on guitar forums for public criticism - though I'd advise starting with friendlier forums first to avoid too much shrapnel and emotional scarring. It's a method that's helped me play with more confidence when there's people around though I know that not everyone that's had to listen to me as a result will be glad that I took these steps.  ;D

As a further step you could try videoing yourself and posting onto YouTube and leave the comments option open (gulp!) - only recommended if you're prepared for some nasty stuff being lobbed at you though.  >:(

The video option is also (for me) more of a challenge. For some reason it is so much more difficult for me to play naturally and be at ease when recording on a video compared to recording audio only.  ::)

robert

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Re: Problem playing to friends
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2011, 09:43:51 AM »
Try to play more in front of family, or friends you feel really comfortable with. Got any kids? They would love to hear you I am sure.

You have to keep putting yourself in front of people, and remember, they are not judges, only you would be the one to give yourself a bad mark. People enjoy anyone having the guts to play in front of people, and 99% of all people out there will think you are awesome for doing.

So don't worry - be happy! (listen to that song over and over!)

diaper head

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Re: Problem playing to friends
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2011, 03:09:59 PM »
get you a micro cube, and pack up yer git fiddle and go the busiest street corner you can find on a friday afternoon.  play everything you know 4 times, then go home.  you'll make make $$ for new strings,
and learn to play for others at the same time.   8)

robert

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Re: Problem playing to friends
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2011, 04:03:43 PM »
get you a micro cube, and pack up yer git fiddle and go the busiest street corner you can find on a friday afternoon.  play everything you know 4 times, then go home.  you'll make make $$ for new strings,
and learn to play for others at the same time.   8)


EXCELLENT ADVICE!

Memory Lane Jr

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Re: Problem playing to friends
« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2011, 04:41:54 AM »
Thanks for all the terrific advice I have taken it all onboard, I am not sure about the street corner act though, I would love to have a go
but I don't have the balls for that one, I would have to be a lot better player to pull that off.
I have sold some gear on ebay lately &  a couple of the guys I sold to are in bands & they have offered for me to go & jam with them,
one is an old blues guy & the other has played numerous rock bands so I think I will take them up on the kind offers, I have a fair bluesy voice so I might end up in a band Ha-Ha.
Enjoy your guitar playing.   :P

reb

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Re: Problem playing to friends
« Reply #7 on: October 01, 2011, 07:37:11 PM »
i'm a windbag with stories, MLJ.

when i was 6, my folks discovered i could play the harmonica by ear. next i knew, they had me taking lapsteel guitar lessons...and-wham- i had an acoustic guitar, and a guy my aunt knew who played was teaching me a few chords. my Dad was wild about it. no one else on his side of the family could play squat...couldn't even sing well.  Mom had an uncle who played accordion. so...there was VAST enthusiasm for what i was just kind of loping along enjoying. seemed perfectly natural to me, but my main two people in my life were shaking pom poms....i dint get it at all.  i was a shy kid (really...i was...the world squished most of that out of me). i really dint want any fuss.

without me doing anything at all.....the next grammar school assembly, i was 'the main act'.  and i got up on stage with my acoustic guitar....and started to sweat....and forgot the words to the song...and crashed and burned. i think i might've been 7 or 8.  my Dad tried to get me on the local tv station...had a try out set up for 'the Ted Mac Hour'...and i wouldn't go. threats or not...no. had enough 'public' performing. it took me most of my life to realize i had created a mental obstacle due to embarrassment at a young age.  peers 'then' mean more than they should ever be allowed to mean. opinions are like blondes...everyone's had one. well, most everyone has...

in the last few years, i have played a few times in front of 300 people, and many times in front of a lot fewer... i also forced myself in college to be in theater (and a teacher pushed me even farther). i've sang in a choir, and had to give public presentations to room fulls of 'mucky mucks'.

i second the 'go and do it'. your self image is the biggest obstacle you will have. my Dad always told me 'none of these people are going to pay your bills'. if you keep that in mind, their opinions won't matter much. if i can get past my horror in the 3rd grade, you can get past yours, i think. the only failure is not trying to do something you want to do.

Memory Lane Jr

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Re: Problem playing to friends
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2011, 03:45:55 AM »
Thanks reb, That story is enough to get anyone motivated, It's funny but I have raced motorbikes since I was a kid & I never had any problems with racing in front of a crowd, probably because it came naturally to me, my first bike I jumped on at eight yrs & was gone until
I ran out of gas but the guitar is a different animal, I find it hard work probably because I took it up late in life, if I was as confident a player as I am a bike rider I would be up on stage giving it heaps, to be honest I am fairly cranky with myself for not playing in my youth.
I reckon you would be a pretty good player reb, have you got any of your guitar work uploaded?

reb

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Re: Problem playing to friends
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2011, 03:49:16 PM »
you're very welcome, MLJ.

i wouldn't say my playing is good-one's music turns out to be a reflection of oneself, i think..so, my stuff is 'rough' :). i play guitar for myself. if i make a mistake, or i don't like something on the second listen, i may post it someplace anyway. after i'm done work and when i'm not beat from being an ol' f&^t, i may sit and do a recording if i hit a stretch i think has some 'soul' to it. what i do post doesn't have 'editing' (another stepping stone i will have to deal with).....you have to like your own stuff. if you don't like it, that's another set of questions.

i wind up playing for fun. and i would say that is the key...if you can forget you're 'in front' of anyone else until you get 'used to it' some, you'd have things beat. i still have butterflies, though, if i allow myself to 'think about it'.

my sound click page is 'cogbern' (a rooster who is, now, sadly, gone to the stewpot):

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=1112015

if i can do this (and all i have been using is a zoom H1-easily found for 100 bucks-and a looper) you can do this. it might be 'the first step' to going public???? remember that old commercial where the lady says 'if i can sew, you can sew'? :)

i never raced publicly...but i had several motorcycles over the years. lots of funny stories from that.

Memory Lane Jr

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Re: Problem playing to friends
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2011, 06:14:52 PM »
Hey reb I listened to your track squire strat into blues jr & the first thing that came into my head was Seasick Steve,
great stuff mate anyone that can play & sing at the same time gets my vote, Yeh I have a Zoom H1 & have just picked up a TC electronics
Flashback delay & looper on ebay so I might have a go at recording when I have some time, where do you place the Zoom when recording? I have tried out the zoom once before & found it best to set the levels manually rather than on auto but it did pick up my  picking on the strings too, I had it placed about 12 inches in front of my Tweaker Combo.

reb

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Re: Problem playing to friends
« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2011, 04:49:36 PM »
MLJ,

what i have found with the H1 is it seems to do best with something 'soft' under it, like a towel. a hard surface makes reflective sounds really 'crack' in the mics. my hearing is not perfect....i have to mess with levels a little. i set the H1 on auto, and i do a little warmup, playing with the relative levels of backing track and guitar. if i sing into the H1, i have to get right in front of it, so i use a 20 foot cord on the guitar. my room is a 'hard room', so i place the zoom near the middle just a couple foot away from the limit of my guitar cord, and then it is 90 degrees off from both the speakers running backing track and the guitar amp. my room acoustics affect everything more than anything else, i think.

on the looper, i have done one track with a keyboard. a friend of mine says she can hear the keyboard...i can't through my computer speakers. i may have to try my good akg headphones sometime.

the fact that the H1 is stereo really helps get tracks down. sometime, i will have to play with placement more, but i haven't had the time or energy in the last few months.

i bet you will really like the looper and delay. opens up lots of possibilities.

Memory Lane Jr

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Re: Problem playing to friends
« Reply #12 on: October 07, 2011, 08:20:53 PM »
The TC Electronics Flashback is one hell of a delay pedal the possibilities are endless.
I will have to try using the Zoom like you have said reb, as soon as I get a chance as I have been playing with delay, my Guitar Port, practise & work, there is never enough time in the day, I would love to be able to stay at home & play guitar now that would be awesome.  ;D

DetroitBlues

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Re: Problem playing to friends
« Reply #13 on: November 11, 2011, 08:17:19 AM »
When you think about, most of the people who ask you to play have no idea how to play themselves.  They just think its cool and cannot pick out your mistakes.  I have no problem playing in front of people, its singing that I have no confidence in.  I can't even sing in front of my wife.

Memory Lane Jr

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Re: Problem playing to friends
« Reply #14 on: November 11, 2011, 10:47:37 PM »
Hey DB I have had a bit of an epiphany with my playing in the last couple of weeks & am feeling a lot more confident playing to people.
I still can't sing & play at the same time though. Who does the singing in your band?