You're not the only one. Tons of musicians struggle with writer's block and experience great frustration as a result.
Once you better understand three key things, you can overcome songwriting writer's block for good and create awesome songs that you can truly be proud of.
Find out write now by watching this video on how to overcome songwriting writer's block:
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Now that you have watched the video, you are ready to get started writing songs for guitar! Use these additional songwriting tips to refine your skills as a guitarist:
Songwriting Tip For Guitarists #1: Improve Your Aural Skills
When you write songs on guitar, it’s important to have some idea of how each phrase/lick in your song transitions into the next one.
Don't make the common mistake of just improvising and hoping to eventually run into a cool note or phrases while playing the same memorized patterns again and again.
Try this instead:
Play a short phrase, and then sing the next half of the phrase using only your voice.
Next, try to play the notes you sang on guitar. This helps you to build a mental vocabulary of how notes sound in your head before you even play them on guitar. Practicing this over time makes you better at playing and writing songs for guitar that sound how you want them to in less time.
Songwriting Tip For Guitarists #2: Improve Your Bends & Vibrato For Better Emotional Expression
When it comes to writing emotional songs with your guitar, bending and vibrato technique are essential for being able to make your listeners really feel what you are playing.
One way to make sure these techniques sound great is to first make sure you consistently keep them in tune.
Practicing for just a few minutes each day on nothing but bending the strings is a great way to become more consistent and expressive with them in no time.
Try this out when you sit down to practice bending strings:
Play the pitch that you will be bending up to first to hear how it should sound then play the bend in order to match it. Eventually you develop the muscle memory needed to make this happen naturally every time you bend the strings.
Question: “How can I make my vibrato more expressive while writing guitar solos? Should I use it more often?”
Answer: Yes! Make sure to use vibrato to emphasize the longer notes in your guitar solos (but don't overdo it).
Guitar players often under-utilize vibrato while writing guitar solos and their playing ends up sounding lifeless and dull after a while.
Practice enhancing the songwriting quality of your guitar solos by simply trying to make a single note sound as expressive as possible with vibrato. Try improvising with just 3-5 notes while using vibrato in many different ways to enhance them until writing solos that use vibrato expressively becomes second nature.
Question: “What is a way to write guitar solos that sound memorable?”
Answer: Try this: Anytime you repeat a melody while you play guitar solos, ask yourself “How can I make this same idea sound more interesting instead of just sounding like the same exact melody?”
This basic question gets you into the habit of thinking more creatively in order to make memorable guitar licks that tie your guitar parts together more smoothly. For instance, try to use approaches such as mixing up the note rhythms, sliding into some of the notes from different directions, using palm muting to add variety with timbre, etc.
Doing this consistently helps you become aware of how the notes feel emotionally in order to start building a vocabulary of approaches to use in your songwriting.
Songwriting Tip For Guitarists #3: Learn From A Good Guitar Teacher
Do you spend a lot of time online looking for lessons, videos or exercises to help you play guitar better and write songs?
Many people do this same thing.
However, making massive progress in these areas is difficult to do on your own. Working with a guitar teacher makes learning and improving as a musician much easier.
Your guitar songwriting (and overall skills in all areas) develop quickly when you take lessons from an expert guitar teacher who has already helped many others achieve the same musical goals that you have.
It's a fact:
Guitar players who learn with a teacher improve their weaknesses much faster than they would learning everything by themselves. This means you are no longer held back from playing the solos, licks, techniques and patterns that frustrate you. Great guitar teachers are excellent at helping you fix issues in your playing that you may have never realized existed while helping you reach your musical goals much faster!
Don't hesitate to take your guitar playing and musical skills to the next level. The faster you get started taking guitar lessons, the faster you begin playing guitar and writing songs just like you always wanted to.
Here is what my students have to say about their experience with taking guitar lessons:
“I found Tom Hess on the net through articles, and I read quite a few of those before I went to Tom’s website. Even though I’m not a metal player at all, and Tom is obviously a metal player, I could still see that his ideas and way of teaching could really benefit me. So I pretty much signed up for online guitar lessons with Tom straight away once I’d gone through the website, and it’s just been a real eye opener with the way he teaches…”
... the integration of concepts that he’ll give you and having a really structured strategy… not just week to week lessons, but things that - you can see from one lesson to the next - really develop and continue to work on your technique and your theory and aural skills and those types of things. So I’d played a long time… 20 years before I really caught onto Tom, and I’d had a lot of lessons, and I’d taught and played but I can really see improvements in my technique, sweeping, and picking which weren’t strong parts of my playing.
I feel like Tom has a good gauge of where you’re at as a guitar player and what you need, and there just seemed to be so much more stuff in the lessons week to week than what you’d ever get in an hour or so in a one on one lesson… way more. So yeah I think that and the forum. I think, I’d pay the money just for the forum. That alone would be fine… I wouldn’t have a problem with that at all. So that alone is massive!
The price for the lessons, that’s nothing... nothing. You know, I think it’s, pretty cheap to be honest. I don’t mean that in a bad way, cheap. Cheap is not a good word, but I just think it’s great value… awesome value. I mean, you know, you could pay that for one-to-one lessons and you just don’t get the same results and support of the forum and the content and the strategies.
Other teachers I’ve had have been good players, and some have become good friends too. But when I’ve started lessons with Tom I’ve got something to compare that to and a lot of it is just sort of teaching songs from week to week… a lot of the lesson will be left up to you… you’ll go to your lesson and they’ll be like what do you want to do today? At the time I said, oh do this song or that song, but with Tom you start to realize that you know, there’s more to it… the goals and you know he’s sort of more in contact with what you want to be able to do as a player, because he’s asking you the questions and then setting up the strategies, so I find that really good.
Yeah I can see more results in 18 months in a lot of areas in my playing than you know 20 years. So it’s sort of, you know, would’ve been great 20 years ago to have met Tom.
Simon Candy, Melbourne, Australia
"When I came to Tom for online guitar lessons, I already had a decent overall level of technique and understood the basics of music theory pretty well. I had taken lessons with other teachers before, and went through several guitar method books that promised to teach me how to become a great lead guitar player. I learned all the materials in these books and courses and picked up some useful tips and knowledge along the way. Yet for some reason I still wasn't feeling like a musician. I struggled very much with writing my own songs, creating my own solos and pushing my guitar technique and speed to a higher level (especially sweep picking, alternate picking, and playing clean at high speeds).
When I started learning from Tom, the main thing that made him different from other teachers was that he was showing me how to excel in all aspects of my guitar playing by applying the skills that I already knew together with the new material that I was learning from him.
He made me aware of both strengths and weaknesses in my playing that I did not even know I had. From there he gave me the knowledge, tools and guidance to literally transform my guitar playing by enabling me to overcome things that were preventing me from becoming a truly creative and self-expressive guitar player. These were the kinds of things that none of my previous guitar teachers and books I studied were able to do for me.
After Tom made me aware of all the things I was missing in my guitar playing and provided me with the strategy and tools for solving them, I began to make very fast progress in all areas of my guitar playing.
I can now write my own music and can create lead guitar solos that I am happy and fulfilled with. I also have the technical skills to confidently and easily play anything that I want to express. I have overcome all of the lead guitar challenges that I struggled with before, and increased my guitar speed to virtuoso levels. More importantly, I have the knowledge and understanding of how to continually improve my guitar playing and musical skills to higher and higher levels to continue expressing myself with my music. Overall, I have definitely transformed in a huge way as a musician and as a person through my lessons with Tom Hess. I am grateful to him for guiding me towards becoming the guitarist I always wanted to be!"
Mike Philippov, Indiana, USA
“When I first heard about Tom Hess, I saw that he was a teacher that was very dedicated and serious about it, and that drew me in immediately. That this is a guy that has a plan, has a goal and really if you’re serious about learning guitar, this guy is equally as serious in a way. So it resonated with me straight away.”
I started out just learning by myself and as many others I got stuck. I had a few issues I wanted to get by, but when I met Tom and talked with him and started lessons with him, he opened up a whole new world of possibilities of what guitar playing can be.
I feel very grateful that I found lessons from Tom since I then did what worked from the very beginning. Many guitarists I see that played way longer than I did, they have build up many bad habits. That from the very start, there was clear instruction of how to practice correctly. You build the ability for high speed and whatever you want from the very beginning and you don’t waste time doing inefficient things. So I’m very grateful that I did that, and now I really feel I am able to reach whatever level I want.
The reasons why I think I feel so motivated all the time is because I know that the thing I’m working on is relevant for me and it’s exactly the direct thing I need to get.
The forum just kicks ass. The people in the forum - it’s just like unconditional help all the time. They love to help out, and you also get very inspired by seeing someone just really getting speed really quick and then you say if he can do it, I can do it. It works on the mental side of being a guitarist and that of course that’s the most important thing. Just being around other musicians like that, is just you learn so much faster, is so much less frustration when you can see that all the people are having the same issues that you do, not anything special or anything. It’s just part of learning process, so it kicks ass.
Magnus Gautestad, Norway
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