There comes a stage in the guitar player’s journey where a faster learning curve emerges and a lot of progress is made. The guitar player is picking up things eagerly and easily. It’s a time of fun and flow.
There is also a time for a lot of guitar players when the learning slows down or stops all together. This usually happens during adulthood. Life gets busier and more demanding. Time to practice becomes frugal and priorities are going elsewhere.
Now whenever you pick up the guitar and the same old songs, riffs, licks and chops are coming out of your fingers and you are tapping from an unaltered rusty dusty guitar vocabulary something has got to change. You are stuck in a rut and often without even realizing it.
You get easily bored with the instrument, the practice, the excitement, the fun and challenge, because there is no real practice anymore, only repetitive playing. That’s the sign that you need to spice up your game.
The time has come to reinvent yourself. You have to stop playing what you already know. It’s time for learning new things, adding fresh flavours to your playing, taking the next step, or heading for a different road or approach.
Let’s be clear, you don’t have to learn new styles of music you don’t appreciate, but find and check out the ones you do. You might be surprised and open up a whole new world.
Learn new songs from other musicians you love or the ones that find your interest. Study them eagerly and deeply like you used to do.
Listen to the albums that are on your still-to-do list. Set a fixed time every week or 2 weeks and listen for an hour or more with undivided attention to new material and explore new bands and artists.
Next: Pick your favorite song from the album and transcribe it, learn the chords, the solos, memorize them and practice diligently, not because you have to, but because you can, because it’s what you always loved to do.
You have to recapture and retrain your practice and exploration muscle. Being in the game for the proces of learning new things.
Learn new licks, scale shapes and improvisation, tricks & techniques, go for the styles of playing you haven’t explored yet, but always secretly loved to acquire. Dive in and dig out the solos that get you fired up every time you hear them on the radio. Make a habit of incorporating new found hot crispy licks into your soloing whenever you pick up the guitar.
Start practicing the things you always wanted to learn but didn’t dare to put to the challenge, or just weren’t ready for yet. Now the time has come.
Get inspired all over again. Listen to old stuff (you haven’t listened to before) and new stuff. Make it a habit to transcribe, learn and practice new stuff consistently. Commit to practice at least one new thing with every practice session or workout. Add new songs, licks and solos to your regular playing repertoire and enjoy the hell out of it.
It’s time for a rebirth, the next stage, a new dimension to your playing. Take one step now!