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Old 03-14-2014, 04:39 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Unhappy singing + "complicated" strumming

Hi everyone. I've been playing guitar for about 2 years, and i think i'm getting pretty good at it. There is one problem though. When i play a more "complicated strumming pattern like "down, down, down up down" instead of just plain "down down, down down", i find it IMPOSSIBLE to sing. with a normal plain strumming pattern like the "d, d, d, d", i have no problem at all to sing, but as soon as it is a little bit irregular, i **** everything up. I just want to play and sing, and eventually play the harmonica at the same time, but i just feel like giving it all up. i have been practicing for way too many hours without any progress at all.
I should also mention that my friend have been playing guitar for literally 2 weeks, and he has no problem with this and can even play the harmonica at the same time.

Sorry for the long post, and thank you all!
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Old 03-14-2014, 04:54 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The thing is, that all the discomfort you have takes place in your head.
This is the barrier you have to cross.
You have to stop thinking about playing and singing as different things,
because they are not. They are one thing and are both slaves to the beat.
So just follow the beat, and take it easy. Don't force anything and just try,
then you'll see it'll work. I had similar problems when I started, but they all vanished when I realized that I do not have to manage 2 seperate things here,
but one thing, that consists of two.
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Old 03-24-2014, 12:16 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Once I get to know a song on my guitar good enough, I can play it without even thinking and the singing comes easily. In fact, for some songs I know really well, if I think about my guitar playing at all, I tend to mess up more than if I don't think about it.

That said, I've seen guitar lines that are VERY complicated and someone is singing while playing it, and it looks waaay beyond what I could do. In particular I'm thinking about this. It has a complicated guitar line AND a complex singing part. I admire someone who can do this stuff.

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Old 04-04-2014, 04:23 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by millstream View Post
I should also mention that my friend have been playing guitar for literally 2 weeks, and he has no problem with this and can even play the harmonica at the same time.
Hi, there are self-taught people who learn faster without taking lessons or call it multi-task if you want to, just think it as a mental game, think that you are a guitar pro and that's a piece of cake, try by playing the chord and sing at the same time randomly even if you mess up with it just as a practice, then maybe it will become easier for you.

The Harmonica is a beautiful instrument, keep it up.
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Old 04-13-2014, 10:35 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I would practice simpler strum patterns, singing it with just downs for example, and then start practising a strum that goes along with the words - following the lyrics.
Practice this groove too - 12312312 count that out loud and do a down strum every time you say 1. Think Otherside by the RHCP, Use Somebody by Kings of Leon.
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Old 04-17-2014, 12:31 AM   #6 (permalink)
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really singing is best but it is very complicated
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Old 04-17-2014, 12:32 AM   #7 (permalink)
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singing is the best way of mind sharpning
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Old 04-25-2014, 03:56 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Don't give up. You will get there. We are all capable of anything, certainly singing and playing guitar. It's like when Ray Manzarek played keys for The Door he used to play the bass part in his left hard and chord/melody is his right hand. The way he described was like 'splitting' his brain in half. Letting the left-hand go into auto-pilot.
The best way to do this is to get really confident with your guitar part by practising slowly in time. Once you manage to play the guitar with fluidity, building up the tempo, start to do the same with vocals. Really get to know the lyrics and melody, and practise them religiously by themselves. Once each part is instinctive bring them together and practise them slowly.
This may all seem a bit of a long process but if you start of this way then you will get use to singing and playing at the same time that you can 'split' your brain and play any song without having to think about it too much.
Keep going you can do it! Once you get it will be so rewarding.
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Old 04-27-2014, 11:27 AM   #9 (permalink)
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One of my biggest influences isn't a very good player- Robert Smith from the Cure. His acoustic strumming changed the way I go at it. Listen to some of his strumming. A lot of work, but it fits the vocals so well.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RS_ux2H473I
I heard an acoustic version of this that demonstrated what I'm talking about more
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Old 06-24-2014, 03:33 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Singing while playing is hard. It's a culminitive skill which can only be achieved with practice, much like singing and playing separately to be fair. So..just practice..more..
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