Be original – the age old advice nobody seems to care about. Do you? You can play other people’s music of course. And only that. Or you can attempt to live your dream. Maybe you love a song or two, they mean something special to you. But if you do so, you should make it into something unique; you should make it your own. There’s no originality in copying a tune mindlessly. But creating your own music; that’s where the real skill is. You have to be able to create a certain mood with your music. You have to be able to make the audience forget where they are or even who they are while you are playing, and make them focus on your music.
Are you a n00b?
Don’t be a n00b; don’t try to impress people with your sheer technique. People love music, not pyrotechnics. Only guitar geeks will love the technical stuff, and you will screw things up anyway, so what’s the point? Stay true to music, no matter how simple it is. It has to mean something, not just a line of weird or hip sounding notes patched together. You can rarely make it catchy with a million notes. It’s the best when you can surprise yourself too. It has to sound kind of familiar to you, but not quite something you have already heard. It has to sound pleasant to you too, you have to be able to like your own music.
The popular boredom
Don’t be afraid to touch styles that are not popular today, or even invent new ones. That’s the point, to create something new and good sounding. It’s okay not to reinvent the wheel, but you still have to be able to create music that sounds confident and concentrated, so you don’t automatically remind people of something that they have already heard in the past. And a big WTF, of course.