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What keeps you playing?


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Evening all, my recent lack of playing guitar has made me start thinking about what I want to get out of guitar. With life getting in the way I missed two weeks of playing before yesterday but I don't feel compelled or get excited like I used to.

 

My question for everyone is what keeps you playing? What do you get out of guitar?

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I really shouldn't respond as I just picked it back up after a year long depression and couldn't do much of anything but, right now, my motivation is because I want to be like the artists who play the music professionally. Not that I want to be a professional, but I idolize the creators and want to show myself that I can be like them with steady practice.

 

Also, I get really passionate about certain songs and feel closer to them if I can learn them. I enjoy using my fingers to make things happen whether thats on Starcraft or on my bass guitar.

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I'd be interested to know if you think guitar didn't help you feel better in any way and that's why you stopped? One of the reasons I picked it up was because I saw it as a release but I find if I'm feeling any negative emotions it usually makes things worse because I end up annoyed at myself.

Gear:

Chapman ML-1, Blackstar HT1

 

My systems: 

Ragnarok: i5 750 @ 2666MHz | Titan Fenrir | MSI P55-GD65 | 8GiB Vengence 1333MHz CAS 9 | 1GiB 6950 DirectCU II | 60GB Crucial M4 | Samsung F3 500GB | Samsung F3 1TB | Seasonic X-750 | X-Fi XtremeGamer | HAF932 | Win 7 Pro | Arch Linux

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I just simply enjoy playing music I like, especially music I have a personal attachment to. As to keep playing consistently? I can't answer that because I fail at it lol. I did everything I possibly could to motivate me everyday. Post it note reminders, a guitar figure on my desk, bought my dream guitar, named the dream guitar, etc. Yet I'll still go on two week or longer dry periods of not playing/practicing.

One thing that was helping me though was asking songs my friends would like to hear me play and I compiled them. Sorted them by easiest to hardest for my skill level and started cracking at them along with my normal playlist. When I'd get competent enough at it, I'd play it for them. Some would karaoke along or just listen. It also helped me practice variety of genres and styles.

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Compare it to making love with your partner. After a while, you don't need to do it everyday or 3 times a day. Eventually that passion will mellow and age, like a fine bourbon.

Don't feel guilty about that.

 

The music is your love, playing guitar is your expression of that love, but you don't need to express it (in that way) every day.

Some days I won't play, but I'm on youtube watching lessons or on this site looking for new songs.

 

As for my partner, she turned out to be a bitch so she had to go, but I do still enjoy some fine bourbon! haha! But not everyday. :D

 

But I play guitar when it suits me, and I do sometimes go a week or so without playing. That's what is so great about a hobby, you can do it when you want and that's it. No expectations from anyone else.

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Ahh hmmmm.I stopped practicing like a month or more but this time it wasn't like I lost motivation at all,even I have peaks of uninterest before but always returned. But this time reason to not keep playing is because a videogame have sucked me in so bad that I don't want to do anymore stuff. It's pretty bad,because I love to play guitar but looks like this time I'm stuck temporary. Neither alcohol,s;laziness or depression stopped me from playing before.I'm pretty ill I know. I hope it's  just temporary stuff only.

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Great topic. Something I found myself thinking about as well. For me, I love rock music. I go to concerts and right before the band takes the stage, the stage is all setup, the crowd is anticipating, The roadies are off the stage. I ALWAYS think. "man, i want to be that guy coming out to rock us" Well, that will never happen and was always a bummer to me. Rocksmith was the key for me. I will be 50 this year. I have tried in the past to learn, but it just wasnt fun. Now I play along to Rocksmith and I know it makes me sound better than i am but I feel like i am actually playing something. That keeps me motivated. Not scales or practice. But playing along. I used to go home after my day and listen to music. Now i strap on the bass and play with it. thanks to this site, i can play about anything I want to play along with. I will never be onstage, but I can turn down the lights and turn up the volume and have a good time. And by doing that, i have gotten better! I dont care if I am ever in a band now. This is enough for me and it is fun. So my mindset is to have fun on Rocksmith and not worry about getting really good to be in a band. but I have got pretty decent and I am learning things about the bass the better i get. I dont play everyday, but at least 15-20 hours a week. I have been playing the bass for about a year now. it is my release and my fun. My love for music fuels my desire to play. 

 

And i have always been wow'd by musicians. How do they do that...

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That's a rough question tho...

Personally i keep playing because of 2 things or even a few more i would say.

1. I love rock/metal music but that isn't as much motivation to keep playing more like a bonus to the other reasons.

2. I want to be prepared for the wedding of my older brother, so i can show off a little bit and surprise him. He won't know what's coming ! He doesn't listen to rock/metal and stuff but even if it's 1 Song, i want to play a nice one and get a smile on his face ! So that he can remember the day he heard me playing on his wedding and tellin his children what a dumbass i am [emoji16] [emoji106]

3. And then when the times come, i'll teach his son how to play the guitar so that he can annoy him a little bit [emoji48] .

4. Obviously i want to know how to play guitar because it's cool as f*ck.

5. I want to be one the best guitarists in the world (or just my home town) even tho that will take some time and probably won't happen. But i'll try....

5. I want to teach my children some day, to have an advantage for them girls. You know, i have to be a cool Dad in the future (hopefully). [emoji28]

6. I want to be proud to actually play my favorite band songs.

 

That's it. I have plans for thr future and that's why i still play [emoji14]

It's not gonna go as planned, but i'll try my best to accomplish all those dreams you could say..

Yeah having kids and show them what Rock has to offer \m/.

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I started playing guitar because I am in love with the sounds that the instrument can make. I keep playing because every time I play, there's a little less resistance between my musical thoughts and what actually comes out of my hands. It's addicting.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I keep playing because I enjoy music. Practising guitar is a hobby that is not only fun but also challenging and you gain a "real-life skill". Imagine you would have invested all those hours of your past where you played video games into your guitar play, I bet most of us here would be much better guitarists.

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I'd be interested to know if you think guitar didn't help you feel better in any way and that's why you stopped? One of the reasons I picked it up was because I saw it as a release but I find if I'm feeling any negative emotions it usually makes things worse because I end up annoyed at myself.

For me , I'm just getting over a major depression bout. Rocksmith and making cdlc's has been great therapy for me. Although life and work are getting in the way of my guitar now :)

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I'm 46 and I just started a little less than 2 years ago.    Oddly enough I started because of playing Rockband with co-workers who were 1/2 my age.    I tried to learn when I was about 14-15 yaears old with traditional training and it fizzled out in a few months.    I saw this in a store and started thinking about it again.   Been playing since.    I have yet to hit 100% on a song.   I call it a good day if I hit 85%.   

 

Besides playing Jurassic rock, when I look at the list of new additions, if I see a song that is getting 100+ downloads quickly and not familiar with it, I watch the video and wind up exposed to new groups that I wouldn't normally listen to.   

 

Like a few have said, I do it for me and find it relaxing and challenging.   I have no aspirations or delusions of playing on a stage.   Its just fun and when you mention it to people, they think its awesome.  My oldest son is about to hit his teens, so I guess I will be the "Cool Dad" who plays music they even like. 

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Maybe it's addiction, 'cause sometimes I really hate it. Being Organizer of Championship helps, or not, as selecting songs for a new week can be a terrible experience :lol: But then it still makes me play, more of a work then pleasure. But it's fun to play a song, it's not fun to learn how to play that song :D So I'm trying not to cross that line as a participant of Championship, playing song 'till I no longer want to. But there is always new week and new songs.

To sum up, everytime when I pick up guitar/bass I'm asking myself "Why? I'm tired of it." But I still keep on playin'.

 

PS. Having few days of pass is good.

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Yeah, I often experiene the same. Having mastered a song is fun, learning it without fast and imminent progress is not. But I learned that there is no easy way to become a better guitarist, patience and persistence are essential and of utmost importance.

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I occasionally take breaks from practice and playing when life gets hectic. But as things slow down I always find myself picking up one of my guitars and fiddling on the couch while watch a movie with the wife. 

Then the next day or so I will be excited to come home from work and practice. 

 

I would say the thing that drives me to learn the guitar is my parents didn't have hobbies. They were hard working people but never had any hobbies.

 

I have always loved music and wanted a hobby that will last until old age as well as be able to pass down to my kids.

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Pleasure, pleasure and pleasure !

 

I continue playing Rocksmith only because it gives me a great pleasure.

I never try to learn a song note by note or to practice specific technics during hours, I only play my favourite songs with my current level.

I only select songs which are not too difficult for my guitar skills.

 

With these simple rules, I surprise myself how my level increases without doing too much efforts, just improving pleasure to play and being patient.

 

As an example, look at this following video I just did. The windsurfer is me and I played the soundtrack with Rocksmith 2014.

 

Practicing with pleasure is my first learning rule ;)

 

Play as you feel and enjoy the result !

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It's pretty simple for me. I love music and couldn't imagine my life without it. I love the sound of the guitar, the feeling and emotions that I have while playing my favorite songs, that sense of personal acomplishment when I've finished playing a difficult song, sharing my passion for music with others. Everything, really. I shouldn't really be giving out advice, as I've only been playing a few years, but I'd say that most guitar players probably go through phases like what you are right now. Not wanting to play doesn't necessarily mean that you've lost your passion for guitar. Life is hectic and sometimes things that were once very important to us get put on the back burner, so that we can focus on things that feel most important to us right now.

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