Using Guitar Backing Tracks in Your Practice Sessions

backing tracksWhen I first started playing the guitar, all I had was my guitar.

No amplifier, no fancy computer set up with guitar recording software built into it. I didn’t even know online lessons existed that I could sit and learn from.

I literally had my guitar, my MP3 player and the desire and motivation to learn how to play some of my favorite songs.

After I bought a cheap Line 6 amp, I was finally able to hear my playing amplified. It sounded amazing being able to finally have distortion to an other wise dead sounding electric guitar.

After I started playing with an amplifier I started to look for other equipment to help me practice and better my skills.

Thank god for google right?

The Introduction of Online Lessons

After I did several google and youtube searches I finally came across some free videos that were helping newbies play the guitar. These initial lessons taught me alot as it’s much easier to be able to practice in the comfort of your own home, and follow along with top guitar players in specifically designated lessons that help you progress little by little.

After I got used to playing, more comfortable playing melodies and chords I started to think…how else can I improve my playing?

After doing a little research into guitar theory to get a better understanding of how music works I finally found Guitar Backing Tracks on youtube to practice to.

This is when everything changed….

The Introduction of Guitar Backing Tracks

The great thing about backing tracks is that there are entire songs composed dedicated specifically to helping you practice melodies and lead. If you’re a lead player and enjoy beautiful melodies these rhythm based guitar tracks are so awesome.

If you don’t already have a DAW with superior drummer hooked up to it, and don’t know how to create your own drum tracks and rhythm over-dubs then it’ll be next to impossible to learn how to play to the sound of a drum unless you have a friend who’s a drummer.

I certainly didn’t know any of this stuff so backing tracks really helped in that respect.

If you ever plan on learning how to play professionally you are going to have to learn how to play to the sound of a drum and keep tempo.

All music will rely on you being able to keep rhythm, pace and tempo.

So I highly recommend that you head on over to YouTube and search for some backing tracks that you can play and practice to.

Whether you play rock, alternative, blues, country, bluegrass – whatever – there are backing tracks out there for you.

So make sure to use these the next time you set up for a practice session – you’re going to love it!

Here’s a quick example:

3 Simple Tips From an Intermediate Guitar Player

guitar tipsOk, I’m going to be honest here and tell you that I am by no means a professional guitar player or someone who should be giving any kind of advice. However, I do have several years of playing under my belt and have learned several different things about playing the guitar that will help newbie players to avoid many of the same problems that I initially ran into. For some in depth advice check out AxeZen’s Guitar Website and Lessons

If I can help you avoid weeks, months and even years of mistakes and bad technique then I hope these 3 simple tips will hit home for you and you will keep them in mind as you move forward in your journey of learning how to play the guitar.

With that being said, let’s get started…

Tip #1 Use a Metronome

If you’re a new player and just starting out you should absolutely, absolutely use a metronome when learning how to play. A metronome is going to keep you in rhythm. It’s going to keep your playing in temp and steady. Without one, even though it may sound like you’re doing good your rhythm is probably way off.

All music is written in a tempo and being able to play the exact beats, in the exact time in that time frame is what will determine how well in rhythm and ultimately, how good your playing sounds to the outside listener. It’s very easy for someone else to be able to tell if your rhythm is off even though it may not be apparent to you.

So every time you pick up your guitar, set a tempo on your metronome and play to it.

This will also help you learn how to play to the beat of a drum since the drum in a band is what keeps the timing and for the guitar, bass and singers.

Practice with a metronome now and you will develop good and steady rhythm a mistake that could cost you greatly years down the line.

Tip #2 Practice, Practice, Practice!

Learning how to play the guitar is a lot of work. It takes a lot of patience, time and dedication to even start to sound semi-decent. It is a skill that will literally take a lifetime to get good at as there is always something new to learn.

This simply means that if you want to get good, you need to do as the title says: Practice, practice, practice. The more time you put into your practice sessions that faster you’re going to cut the learning curve and become a better player.

I will be honest and tell you the first few years are going to suck since you will still be making a lot of mistakes. Some songs will make you feel like you’re still a beginner and others will make you never want to play again.

Just keep at it.

Learn one song, master it and then move onto the next.

Always build on top of what it is you learn and continue practicing not only songs, but chords, scales, melodies, and playing to a drum.

Backing tracks are also a good way to practice lead and melodic phrases. It’s easy to find some too! Just do a simple good search for backing tracks for guitar improvisation and you’ll find TONS of different genres in different keys to practice to.

The only thing with backing tracks though is that you have to already have some sort of understanding of scales in order to know what notes to work in with whatever Key the backing track was written in.

So if you already have some experience this is a great way to practice.

Tip #3 Take Some Sort of Online Lessons

Look, bottom line is that there are some many resources available online that will help you cut the learning curve in half. When it comes to the guitar, there is simply so much information out there that can completely overwhelm you and prevent you from developing a solid practice schedule.

The last thing you want is for your playing to be sporadic and all over the place without any structure.

With online electric guitar lessons for beginners, you can find structured, and progressive lessons that will give you a steady form of teaching that will help you progress little by little in all of the ways that will make you a competent guitar player.

This is the best, most efficient and most enjoyable way of learning how to play an instrument.

In a structured fashion that covers EVERYTHING you need to know.

So make sure to do a simple Google search and find lessons that provide you with a structured routine.

This alone will take your playing to new heights.