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Do you believe in talent?

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Rudi    591
15 hours ago, symphonious7 said:

Well you can look at it that way, but it's not all good you know.   Yes I have a propensity to pick up an instrument and be able to do stuff with it, but the fact that I don't have the drive or discipline to LEARN foundational concepts, makes everything sloppy, and it never really... I can't even strum an acoustic guitar with the same feeling as your average 4 chord guitarist, I always just bang out rhythms, when it comes time to finesse... I have no finesse...   And solo wise I can't really progress, because I've learned everything wrong and I have no way of getting back.  Without holding my pick right or knowing how to play for tone, it kind of all sounds... amateur.  And i wasn't lying about my breathing when I sing, I've always wished I could go back and get vocal lessons in my teens because I am often gasping in my takes, and straining, and I think that's cause I don't know proper stance and breathing etc.  

 

So I mean... see it how you want, but I sure haven't had any hit records from my lack of studying and learning....  Just a whole bunch of amateurish demos...

 

Well never having any tuition, I learned everything 'wrong' too but there is always a way forward. I understand that you lack discipline/drive but that cant extend into music making because you are doing it. Voice & guitar practice are just the means of preparing to make music, so you should at least try some remedial practice. What have you got to lose? If you take the trouble to learn lyrics & chord patterns then you can do the other things too

 

I had to relearn playing guitar without the use of my left thumb (osteoarthritis) after 44 years of playing using that thumb extensively. I may have to relearn finger-picking without my right thumb (less severe osteoarthritis) in future.

 

Oddly, I never had to figure out any new techniques (so far anyway) because the body's natural aversion to pain made me do things differently automatically. The next thing you know, I'm playing without the use of the thumb at all. All it took was continued playing.

 

What I'm really saying is that the drive to create music should be able to manage your perceived weaknesses. Some of these things are pretty easy to fix anyway.

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starise    403

Great to see you back Rudi! 

 

I have also learned several instruments the "wrong way". Your comments remind me of a friend of mine who plays in a Van Halen themed band as the lead guitarist. When you hear him tell how he learned to play. He tells of playing until his fingers bled repeatedly. He still has the blood stains on his wall where he was practicing in his room and rubbed the wall. He probably spent half of his adolescent life practicing. He didn't do anything the normal way. He tunes his guitar in open C. If you hear him play he can play like Eddie Van Halen and others. Every bit as good.

 

He has always been a good example to me of a person who was going to learn no matter what. Learn he did, and well.

 

Lessons and techniques are  based off of finding the best way to do a thing on any given instrument. If you learn something the wrong way it doesn't mean you can't  play, but it might make some things harder to play, especially later on, at the advanced level. On the instruments I've learned without lessons I feel like I've definitely hindered my playing in not getting the right training, however it never stopped me from making music.

 

In beginning the violin I decided that I was going to learn it the right way, so I got a teacher. I'm not there yet but the instrument is beginning to feel normal or comfortable for lack of a better term.In about another year I think it'll be so familiar it will be like putting on pants.

 

Chris I think I understand. You are not a book worm. You're a let's do this worm. I'm kinda there myself. Put a theory book in front of me and my eyes glaze over. I'm revisiting the modes of music. Cool concept but I can't stay at it for very long at a time.

 

 

 

 

 

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symphonious7    206
1 hour ago, starise said:

Great to see you back Rudi! 

 

I have also learned several instruments the "wrong way". Your comments remind me of a friend of mine who plays in a Van Halen themed band as the lead guitarist. When you hear him tell how he learned to play. He tells of playing until his fingers bled repeatedly. He still has the blood stains on his wall where he was practicing in his room and rubbed the wall. He probably spent half of his adolescent life practicing. He didn't do anything the normal way. He tunes his guitar in open C. If you hear him play he can play like Eddie Van Halen and others. Every bit as good.

 

He has always been a good example to me of a person who was going to learn no matter what. Learn he did, and well.

 

Lessons and techniques are  based off of finding the best way to do a thing on any given instrument. If you learn something the wrong way it doesn't mean you can't  play, but it might make some things harder to play, especially later on, at the advanced level. On the instruments I've learned without lessons I feel like I've definitely hindered my playing in not getting the right training, however it never stopped me from making music.

 

In beginning the violin I decided that I was going to learn it the right way, so I got a teacher. I'm not there yet but the instrument is beginning to feel normal or comfortable for lack of a better term.In about another year I think it'll be so familiar it will be like putting on pants.

 

Chris I think I understand. You are not a book worm. You're a let's do this worm. I'm kinda there myself. Put a theory book in front of me and my eyes glaze over. I'm revisiting the modes of music. Cool concept but I can't stay at it for very long at a time.

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks for that Starise!  I think sometimes I can be so honest I don't grasp the implicative factors people might see in what I say.  But I remember I had a girlfriend in my early 20's, and I could jam on guitar for her all day long, trying to play sexy hendrixy type licks and stuff, but in time, she got used to my tricks and wasn't so impressed, and one day she says "Serenade me".  I'm like "Well I mean I can play for you again.." she's like "no you always play that bluesy stuff, I want you to serenade me and play something pretty"....  I had no idea what to do.  I never took the time to learn how to control my right hand any better than firing off licks and chugging out driving rhythms.  I never learned to finger pick, or how to put those tasteful little accents between chords.... so I TRIED to serenade her, and it was so flat, and so just... she was like "Oh ok I see... you're not that kind of guitarist..."  

 

I've played in bands before, where I can follow along really well by ear at first, and they think I'm gonna be a great edition to the band.  But then they start expecting me to know some simple musical terms, and to be familiar with some common basic feels and chords that most guitarists of my skill level would know, and I have no idea what they're talking about haha I got kicked out of this one band over it, they said "You'd be great as the main lead in a rock band, but we need someone with who's a bit more well rounded" and they were sooo right.  So yeah I mean... for my purposes with my music, my playing works just fine.  But it doesn't help me to be a very versatile musician when it comes to collaborations.  

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Mahesh    489
On 12/08/2017 at 1:51 AM, tunesmithth said:

Our continued use & glamorization of labels such as "gifted, naturally talented & inspired" in connection with musicians & writers, greatly contributes to the public's misconception of what it takes to become one. Anyone who's proficient in either of those capacities knows full-well that sincere desire, prolonged dedication, personal discipline and hard work play a much bigger part!



Completely agreed. I was never formally trained to sing though my mom did think I had a sweet voice as a kid. As my interest in music increased, I stumbled my way forward to recognise in a subjective way as to what is good and what is bad to my ears. I started doing that with my own voice which led to me learning on my own how to sing. Years later when internet became an accessibility, my interest led me to different vocal techniques and what not which I've picked up over the years, enough to pass it on to someone who's not a "naturally" talented singer at all and make them sing. Oh I wish I'd a quarter for every time someone said I'm "gifted". I'd love to take them back in time so that they could hear me sing and see if they'd still say so. 

Everyone is good or bad at something or the other. Some people are sensitive to how they perceive shapes and colors giving them the potential to be a good artist while another may have a more intuitive mind when it comes to playing an instrument or sing. They are all different starting points to jump off of. As much as it can be seen as a "natural talent", like Tom mentioned - interest, focus, discipline and obviously choosing to get better at something plays a bigger part. 

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symphonious7    206

Kind of going in the vain of what tunesmith was saying, just how I was saying that having natural talent hasn't always been a blessing for me?  I was thinking like, it OFTEN goes that way I think!  Sometimes I think it's the most "gifted" people who waste their gifts, and then people who may not have as much natural ability, work hard until they have surpassed the gifted person.  I think you see that all the time, where it's the one who put in the work that gets the result, even though they had to try harder to pick up what may have come naturally to someone else.  When you think about it, having that drive, discipline and desire, is a gifting all it's own.  They really should be seen as two sides of the same coin or... equally necessary I think.  If you've got the talent but don't have the drive, it doesn't amount to much.  If you've got the drive but don't have much talent, if you keep working at it you could probably develop whatever talents you at first lacked.  

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MikeRobinson    165

There are some people out there who have unbelievable hand/eye coordination and independence of their body-movements such that they can take the worst instrument in the world and "shred" it.  These people have talent – a natural gift.  (But they also developed that talent through many years of practice.)

 

But we ... we have computers!  The ultimate "digital word-processor."  We don't have to be "touch typists" anymore.  We have at our fingertips, even in our phones, more processing-power and therefore more musical production capacity than anyone(!) has ever had ... period ... at any price.  So, whether or not we have mechanical "talent," we have the capacity to begin to realize our musical dreams.

 

I think that the most important factors are simply, "discipline and determination."  We have 17,897 Peanuts comic strips, all drawn by one man, all drawn by hand, because of those two qualities.  You determine to do it, and to carry a project through until it is done.

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