Guitar Instructor: Why You Should NOT Use Any Effects While Practicing Guitar


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UG News editor since early 2013. King Crimson fan. I handle the news around here.

Guitar instructor Tyler Larson of Music Is Win presented a concise clip on why practicing guitar with effects is not a good approach, saying (transcribed by UG):

“One of the hardest things to do as an improving guitar player is to regulate the amount of effects, boards and processors you use while practicing.

“So that means – as much as I like to joke about it – not hiding behind a wall of delay, reverb and distortion as you rip through your scales at 250 BPM.

“It’s always tempting – after all, guitar players like Steve Vai and Joe Satriani have a lot more going on that a bit of overdrive and some reverb, so why shouldn’t we?

“The difference is that they can control and manipulate these effects to their advantage, rather than depend on them to achieve a certain sound or technique.

“It’s important for us when we practice to minimize our tone regarding the effects in order to perfect our technique and our melodic ideas.

“That way, when we do add all the fun stuff, it’s that much better.”

The musician also pointed out:

“Now, loop pedals are certainly an exception to this rule because they can be helpful in practice. And I’m definitely not saying that you shouldn’t be a mad scientist every once in a while.

“After all, playing guitar is about having fun.

“Tom Morello and Mike Einziger wouldn’t be the guitar legends they are without their signature, heavily-effected guitar sounds.

“I gave to say, the satisfaction of turning on your array of guitar effects after you’ve trained in the guitar dojo of dry tones and unaltered signals is extremely sweet. I recommend you give it a taste.”

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