Feel like your guitar playing sucks? Angel Vivaldi has one simple trick to turn that around

Angel Vivaldi press shot
(Image credit: Andrew Minarik)

Angel Vivaldi, one of today’s foremost electric guitar virtuosos, was a big fan of our recent op-ed on how online hate endangers the very future of the guitar. Part of that feature looked at how the sheer volume of insanely talented guitarists can make you feel bad about your playing, or put you off altogether - and now Vivaldi himself has come up with a solution to set aside those negative feelings in a recent Facebook video.

“For guitarists and musicians, the internet is a vast sea of inspiration and information that’s constantly pushing us to better our craft,” Vivaldi observes.

“But sometimes after seeing the immense talent that’s out there, it may make you want to hurl your instrument into a spiraling pit of flames.”

Now, here comes the secret.

“The next time you pick up your guitar, I want you to take it and I want you to flip it around like this,” the shredder explains, as he flips his signature Charvel’s orientation. “This is what it felt like to be a complete beginner.”

At this point, Vivaldi plays left-handed - not his natural dexterity - and the results are, well, not unlike someone picking up a guitar for the first time.

“Compare that to where you are now, and even if all you know is one chord, know that you have made some solid progress,” he continues.

“Do this any time you feel like dogshit about your guitar playing - but don’t stop practicing. You have to meet your talent halfway with a lot of hard work and a lot of dedication.”

We’ll echo that here at GW - and you have plenty of time to practice right now, so make sure you keep it all in context, and don’t go into a negative spiral if you can’t nail that lick first, second, or even the 27th time. Just flip that guitar over, remember where you came from, and try again.

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Michael Astley-Brown

Mike is Editor-in-Chief of GuitarWorld.com, in addition to being an offset fiend and recovering pedal addict. He has a master's degree in journalism, and has spent the past decade writing and editing for guitar publications including MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitarist, as well as more than 20 years performing in bands of variable genre (and quality). In his free time, you'll find him making progressive instrumental rock under the nom de plume Maebe.