Why Guitars Are An Outdated Instrument
For many years, the guitar has been hailed at the icon of rock. But is the guitar holding music back? In this article I will address this issue and look and the positive and negative aspects of the guitar.
The Image of the Rock God
Whenever we think of the rock star, we nearly always think of a guitar player. Although singers get a lot of attention too, it’s the lead guitarist who is the enduring image of the rock hero. Why is this?
One reason may be the visual aspect of a guitar player, seeing them stood up there on stage with their guitar hanging down by their knees, playing all these cool riffs. It could also be that the guitar can be a difficult instrument to play well. This may be one reason why people have a fascination with watching someone play something impressive on a guitar – because you wouldn’t be able to do it. Maybe it’s the same reason we enjoy watching magic tricks or any other kind of impressive performance.
It’s All About the Performance
Whatever the reasons, it has to be said that there is something entertaining and captivating about a good guitar player. Guitars are played in a way which means that you can easily see what they are playing, which is in contrast to a piano or keyboard player, which isn’t so easily on display. Guitars are also a very emotional instrument. Electric lead guitar playing can have a real emotional expressiveness to it that isn’t so easily achieved with many other instruments.
The Limitation of the Guitar
However, despite all this “rock star hero” and “it’s all about the performance” talk, we have to face facts here. The guitar is a very outdated and limited instrument. If your goal with your music is to create the most interesting and beautiful sounds, then using a guitar will hold you back.
A guitar has only one main sound, which although it can be varied considerably using various effects, it can only go so far. So, if you’re less bothered about the performance aspect of music, and more concerned with using a wide variety of sounds, then leave the guitar well alone.
The Future of Music?
It has to be said that computers running software synthesizers are the future of music, as they contain an infinite range of sonic possibilities. Their sounds can either be played using a MIDI keyboard or programmed in on the screen.
But what about the performance aspect? Well, there are options. During the 80’s the keytar was popular, but it has since gone out of favour. There are also guitar MIDI controllers, which enable the musician to play it like a guitar but use it to control synthesizer sounds. It’s these kinds of performance instruments which need to be developed alongside computer synthesizer technology, so that we can have the best of both worlds – the performance and the wide range of sounds.
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