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Jimmy always comes up close to or at the top in the guitar magazine best-of lists. It's only the minority of guitar snobs (like Van Halen) that want to dis him. While guitar players are more impressed with shredding than the layman, they still understand that the entire package of a musician is what's most important.

Really? I would have thought it was the other way around.

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Really? I would have thought it was the other way around.

No, guitarists definitely appreciate shredding kind of like a figure skating judge watching a triple axel, as a feat of athleticism. I mean, only guitarists really know what it takes to pull off certain things. The general public gave up their interest in solos in the 90s. Only things like Guitar Hero have raised the level of interest in playing again. Still, there is a reason stuff like American Idol dominates rather than a battle of the bands show. The public in general tend to fixate more on singing than instrumentalism.

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No, guitarists definitely appreciate shredding kind of like a figure skating judge watching a triple axel, as a feat of athleticism. I mean, only guitarists really know what it takes to pull off certain things. The general public gave up their interest in solos in the 90s. Only things like Guitar Hero have raised the level of interest in playing again. Still, there is a reason stuff like American Idol dominates rather than a battle of the bands show. The public in general tend to fixate more on singing than instrumentalism.

Hmmm, I'm a guitarist and I hate shredding....

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Well, I think the initial question was asking if Page is sloppy. He was not asking if you enjoyed Page over other musicians. And the fact is, that yes, Page is a sloppy guitarist.

Yep however this thread morphed into a discussion of whether or not more technical and precise playing has value about 25 posts ago.

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No, guitarists definitely appreciate shredding kind of like a figure skating judge watching a triple axel, as a feat of athleticism. I mean, only guitarists really know what it takes to pull off certain things. The general public gave up their interest in solos in the 90s. Only things like Guitar Hero have raised the level of interest in playing again. Still, there is a reason stuff like American Idol dominates rather than a battle of the bands show. The public in general tend to fixate more on singing than instrumentalism.

I'm not a player (beyond about three chords) so I'll take your word for it, but I guess what I was thinking was that it might be a case of shredding sounding impressive to people who don't know how it's done (and/or can't do it), but guitarists seeing through the superficial flash because they do know how it's done, they see behind the screen, so to speak. But I see what you're saying.

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I remember reading a great quote from Carlos Santana once. "There are two types of guitar players, those that impress and those that inspire. I like the ones that inspire me"

The whole shred thing never inspired me and the audience for the shred genre was mostly guitar players and ususally guitar players that were not seasoned. They simply could not understand why Hendrix or Page were considered great. They were comparing guitar players by speed, acrobatics, etc and a heart felt solo was not impressive to them.

I remember talking about some of the shred players to some music fans in my office and nobody had ever heard of them (Vai, Malmsteem, satriani, etc). At first I was shocked but then I realized that you avereage joe doesnt care about guitar acrobatics, it doesnt do anything for them. Heck, most people dont even know what a solo is.

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Well, I think the initial question was asking if Page is sloppy. He was not asking if you enjoyed Page over other musicians. And the fact is, that yes, Page is a sloppy guitarist.

Ok. And sloppy means what? That he makes mistakes or that his playing isn't 100% perfect? What guitar player doesn't make mistakes?...

How exactly do you measure the level of sloppiness of a guitar player?

I'm sorry for this little rant but I really dislike the use of 'sloppy' to describe a guitar player. It's like Page is good but not nearly awesome and brilliant as the godly virtuosos guitar players like Malmsteen or Vai because they play faster than the speed of light all the time. Well, I say good for them, but for me Page's music and guitar playing means something and truly speaks to the soul. That's all what matters to me. B)

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Ok. And sloppy means what? That he makes mistakes or that his playing isn't 100% perfect? What guitar player doesn't make mistakes?...

How exactly do you measure the level of sloppiness of a guitar player?

I'm sorry for this little rant but I really dislike the use of 'sloppy' to describe a guitar player. It's like Page is good but not nearly awesome and brilliant as the godly virtuosos guitar players like Malmsteen or Vai because they play faster than the speed of light all the time. Well, I say good for them, but for me Page's music and guitar playing means something and truly speaks to the soul. That's all what matters to me. B)

I agree, but if you look at Knebby's post at the beginning of the thread, she points out that Jimmy calls himself sloppy, so . . .

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I agree, but if you look at Knebby's post at the beginning of the thread, she points out that Jimmy calls himself sloppy, so . . .

Yeah, lol I remember it now. I guess he was just being humble you know.

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I'm not a player (beyond about three chords) so I'll take your word for it, but I guess what I was thinking was that it might be a case of shredding sounding impressive to people who don't know how it's done (and/or can't do it), but guitarists seeing through the superficial flash because they do know how it's done, they see behind the screen, so to speak. But I see what you're saying.

I think there is different schools of thought on that. I'm the type of player you describe, I know what the shred guys are doing, I can do it too and it's not all that impressive to me. That said IMO shred is kind of a generic term, there are guitarists out there that play insanely complicated stuff that aren't considered shred. For example some of the top Nashville guys like Brent Mason play stuff that would probably be out of reach for guys like Vai and Satch. Honestly I don't think shred style guitar is any more difficult that playing 12 bar blues, to do either well takes about the same degree of dedication and practice.

I hate to keep using this example but I will. I can play stuff much more complicated than Jimmy Reed and Eddie Taylor yet I can't come up with anything that sounds as good as they did. When I hear something like Reed's Honest I Do it blows my mind how good it sounds and it is some of the most basic playing ever but's tough to establish the groove they get. That and the weird I V V I progression they use is trippy for blues. I can play exactly the same notes they do but it never sounds "right". That's the same place Page comes from. If you've been on youtube and have watched some of those Page immitators there you know some of them are capable of playing exactly what Jimmy plays, some of them even copy the mistakes Jimmy made on live stuff. But even though they play the same notes it often doesn't sound like Jimmy. IMO that's what makes the best the best, they have something that comes through in their playing that you can't learn. Call it personal style or an otherworldly gift, whatever it is not many possess it.

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The whole shred thing never inspired me and the audience for the shred genre was mostly guitar players and ususally guitar players that were not seasoned. They simply could not understand why Hendrix or Page were considered great. They were comparing guitar players by speed, acrobatics, etc and a heart felt solo was not impressive to them.

The shred fans can be a cantankerous bunch however the famous players like Vai and Satch always have nice things to say about Jimmy and Jimi. As good as they are they understand theres more to being a great player than technical prowess. Even Yngwie, as pompous as he is, understand that what Page did goes beyond skill and technique. It's the end result that counts not whether or not the music was difficult to play. It's tougher to make a lasting musical statement than it is to cram as many notes in or employ as many tricks as possible. Most pros know that, it's typically the fans that dispute it.

Edited by danelectro
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The shred fans can be a cantankerous bunch however the famous players like Vai and Satch always have nice things to say about Jimmy and Jimi. As good as they are they understand theres more to being a great player than technical prowess. Even Yngwie, as pompous as he is, understand that what Page did goes beyond skill and technique. It's the end result that counts not whether or not the music was difficult to play. It's tougher to make a lasting musical statement than it is to cram as many notes in or employ as many tricks as possible. Most pros know that, it's typically the fans that dispute it.

There's some GREAT posts you've made here in this thread,danelectro! Thanks

I couldn't have said it better.

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The shred fans can be a cantankerous bunch however the famous players like Vai and Satch always have nice things to say about Jimmy and Jimi. As good as they are they understand theres more to being a great player than technical prowess. Even Yngwie, as pompous as he is, understand that what Page did goes beyond skill and technique. It's the end result that counts not whether or not the music was difficult to play. It's tougher to make a lasting musical statement than it is to cram as many notes in or employ as many tricks as possible. Most pros know that, it's typically the fans that dispute it.

Good post. I agree. B)

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Well, I think the initial question was asking if Page is sloppy. He was not asking if you enjoyed Page over other musicians. And the fact is, that yes, Page is a sloppy guitarist.

I think it's turned into an interesting discussion which is related to the initial topic.

The shred fans can be a cantankerous bunch however the famous players like Vai and Satch always have nice things to say about Jimmy and Jimi. As good as they are they understand theres more to being a great player than technical prowess. Even Yngwie, as pompous as he is, understand that what Page did goes beyond skill and technique. It's the end result that counts not whether or not the music was difficult to play. It's tougher to make a lasting musical statement than it is to cram as many notes in or employ as many tricks as possible. Most pros know that, it's typically the fans that dispute it.

Good points. Slightly off topic and apologies for being ignorant, can you explain shredding to me?

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Instead of writing an entire essay about how I feel on this, I'll just post this:

johnson1gm9.jpg

Maybe, I'll write more tomorrow (later today technically since it's half past midnight already). I'm off to bed now.

Edited by nki
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I think it's turned into an interesting discussion which is related to the initial topic.

Good points. Slightly off topic and apologies for being ignorant, can you explain shredding to me?

This is from Wiki and it's as good an explanation as any. To that I'll add some well known examples but I think the genre is more diverse than these players demonstrate. A well known player in the shred style is Joe Satriani, though he is a pretty weak example. The genre was really defined by guys like Michael Lee Firkins, Greg Howe and Paul Gilbert. However it really is a loose term since many of the techniques used by shred guys are also used by twangier players like Johnny Hiland.

Shred guitar or shred refers to lead electric guitar playing that relies heavily on fast passages; the act of playing fast passages on an electric guitar is termed ‘shredding’. While one critic argues that shred guitar is associated with "... sweep-picked arpeggios, diminished and harmonic minor scales, finger-tapping and ...whammy-bar abuse" several guitar writers argue that rather than being a musical definition, it is a fairly subjective cultural term used by guitarists and enthusiasts of guitar music. It is usually used with reference to hard rock and heavy metal guitar playing, where it is associated with rapid tapping solos and special effects such as whammy bar ‘dive-bombs’. The term is sometimes used with reference to playing outside this idiom, particularly country, jazz fusion, blues[2][3] and some modern variants of bluegrass.
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This is from Wiki and it's as good an explanation as any. To that I'll add some well known examples but I think the genre is more diverse than these players demonstrate. A well known player in the shred style is Joe Satriani, though he is a pretty weak example. The genre was really defined by guys like Michael Lee Firkins, Greg Howe and Paul Gilbert. However it really is a loose term since many of the techniques used by shred guys are also used by twangier players like Johnny Hiland.

Great! Thanks for that danelectro. I sort of figured that's what it was.

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I'm a bit of a picker, but bass is my main instrument; I am definitely a bass player who also plays guitar (John Paul Jones is, naturally, one of my favourite bass players). I'm also a blues-Pentatonic based player whose guitar heroes happen to be Page, Clapton and Keith Richards. I've never been a fan of shredders; IMO there's no soul or feeling in that playing whatsoever, simply showboating. It's not music to me, it's what Frank Zappa called "spooing", i.e. wanking. Look at it this way: who's sold more records, Jimmy Page or Yngwie Malmsteen? That's the difference. My personal taste, give me sloppy over a shredder any fucking day- at least somebody like Jimmy Page or Keith Richards is sloppy with feeling.

...Then there's a friend of mine, who is totally one of those mile a minute, exotic scales, all the big Jazz chords you need eight fingers to play kind of guitarists. And, I say, all power to him; he's never without that Strat in his hands same as I'm never without a ciggie or J in mine, heh heh! And, indeed, he worked his ass off to get that technically proficient on the axe. He quit taking lessons years ago when he realized he was teaching his instructor more than the other way round. Point is, he loves Zeppelin, Hendrix, etc, but there's been so many times we've been hanging out and I'll have on Zeppelin or Jimi or something and my friend will literally scream at the stereo, "Tune your fucking guitar!!!" or crack up laughing at a bum note or something. Their sloppiness drives him batty, yet the guy still loves their music and appreciates what they were doing. :D Just to tweak him a while back, I went through my archive of Zeppelin boots and made him a disc of some of Page's worst moments...he listened to it and said, "Some of that stuff was bloody awful, and made me cringe, but there are times I wish I could just play like that! I've forgotten how." There seemed to be a tinge of regret in his voice, and go figure...

Edited by Nutrocker
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Look at it this way: who's sold more records, Jimmy Page or Yngwie Malmsteen?

This should never be used as a way to place value on music. Saying that implys that bands that sell big, crummy like Blink 182, are better than the majority of all classic rock era bands because they sold more records. Personally I don't think sales mean anything more than that artist was lucky enough to sell lots of records. There's no explaining it, a great band like Mott The Hoople struggled to make a buck while a shitty band like REO Speedwagon cashed in big. It makes no sense.

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This should never be used as a way to place value on music. Saying that implys that bands that sell big, crummy like Blink 182, are better than the majority of all classic rock era bands because they sold more records. Personally I don't think sales mean anything more than that artist was lucky enough to sell lots of records. There's no explaining it, a great band like Mott The Hoople struggled to make a buck while a shitty band like REO Speedwagon cashed in big. It makes no sense.

:goodpost:

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This is from Wiki and it's as good an explanation as any. To that I'll add some well known examples but I think the genre is more diverse than these players demonstrate. A well known player in the shred style is Joe Satriani, though he is a pretty weak example. The genre was really defined by guys like Michael Lee Firkins, Greg Howe and Paul Gilbert. However it really is a loose term since many of the techniques used by shred guys are also used by twangier players like Johnny Hiland.

I assume the idea is that they play fast enough to shred the strings (metaphorically, anyway)?

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