2014 New Year's Resolutions for Guitarists...
- Learn the basics:
Answer those questions that you've been too scared to ask!
Sick of feeling like the guy behind the counter in the guitar shop knows more than you? Not sure of the difference between Dorian & Mixolydian? Still suck at basic rhythm guitar?
Then there's a quick fix - learn the basics! Your local music teacher can likely answer all those little questions that you've got about the guitar, and clue you up for your journey through 2014.
- Invest in some new gear:
Change up your guitar situation
One way to unlock some new creative avenues is to switch up your approach. Only play electric? Get a decent acoustic! Never use any effects? Grab a multi-pedal that you can afford! You might be surprised at just how effective spending a little bit of cash on some new gear can be.
- Get Lucky:
Funk all up in your face
Need a new party piece? Stuck in a guitar rut? Need some funk in your life? Then perhaps learning Nile Rodgers' funk-tastic riff from 2013's Daft Punk track "Get Lucky" is the answer to all these dilemmas, and more. It'll loosen up your wrist, maybe teach you some new phrasings and plant a grin on your face that'll be difficult to shift.
- Try some alternatives:
Alternate tunings rule
If you've only ever played in standard tuning, it's time to get brave. Break out that chromatic tuner and go rogue - there's a whole world of alternate tunings out there, and they'll transform your playing beyond all recognition. The guitar can feel like a completely different instrument in another tuning, and once you've strayed away from standard, you'll have a whole new set of sounds up your sleeve.
- Embrace Beatlemania:
Yeah, yeah, yeah 2014 is a big anniversary for Beatlemaniacs
2014 is marking 50 years since the Fab Four broke the US and changed the face of musical history. So, it's as good a time as any to check them out on the guitar. If you're new to The Beatles, you'll be astonished at the sheer variety of chords Lennon and McCartney worked into their songs, the fluid complexity of Harrison's guitar parts and Ringo's rhythmical dexterity. Seriously, these guys had some really cool ideas.
- Record that masterpiece:
Get in the studio /set-up your home studio
Have you yet to record your own particular brand of guitar genius? Well, it's time to get cracking. Recording is a heck of a lot of fun, plus you'll learn new skills (and get a fresh appreciation for the skills of your favorite players) that can only be discovered by throwing yourself into the recording process.
- Get out and play:
Live and loud - it's the only way
The true test of any guitarist's mettle is playing in front of a crowd. It can be terrifying, but as soon as you get up and do it you'll understand what all those guys who talk about the 'buzz' of playing are banging on about. It's addictive, hugely satisfying and, once you've conquered the nerves, a ton of fun. Check out your local bars for open mic nights, and get yourself involved.