Popular guitar styles and their analogous martial arts

Discussion in 'Music Discussion (BAM'S Bieberverse)' started by Blue_Lou, Sep 25, 2018.

  1. Blue_Lou

    Blue_Lou Orange Belt

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    For any fellow guitar players here. This is a weird esoteric post but I figured the Music section of an MMA forum is the best possible demographic for it. Disclaimer: The comparisons below are ultimately pointless.. it’s just a fun thought experiment. As a fan of both guitar and combat sports, sometimes I can’t help but notice parallels. And the more I thought about it the more it seems like guitar styles and fighting styles can be classified in similar ways.



    Rock/Metal Guitar = Traditional Asian Martial Arts
    For the layman, this style is typically the first one that comes to mind when thinking of guitar music/martial arts. Its advanced techniques require exceptional dexterity and are some of the most flashy and stunning of all when properly executed. Due to popular media, expertise in this particular style is sometimes believed to be the pinnacle of guitar/fighting competency, but those in the know understand that it’s far from the be-all and end-all. This style can be subdivided into many subcategories, each one idolized by a separate fan base.


    Blues Guitar = Boxing
    This style is defined by a limited toolset - i.e. playing using only pentatonic notes and a limited selection of scales and chords is analogous to fighting using only punches. Its narrow scope makes it popular among beginners as an introduction to guitar/fighting as a whole. At the same time this limitation also necessitates creativity, which imparts certain qualities to this style and gives it a distinctive appeal. In the past this style was more popular in the mainstream, but its relative lack of modern household names has diminished its cultural presence in recent years. It has a predominantly American heritage.


    Classical/Folk Guitar = Kickboxing
    In a broad sense, the same tools used in the previous style plus the remainder of the available toolset. This style is loosely defined and often used as an umbrella term to refer to its many variants around the world. It is a reputable style and in a way its toolset may be “intuitive” to us, and probably always existed in some form since antiquity - i.e. the intuitive appeal of complete diatonic (heptatonic) scales and chords of conventional music theory is analogous to the intuitive appeal of fighting with all available limbs. (The first style listed at the top also draws from this comprehensive toolset but generally with a greater emphasis on “flashiness” than on theoretical considerations.)


    Flamenco Guitar = Capoeira
    Also has a comprehensive toolset. This style is much less prominent in most of the world than in its country of origin. Its characteristic techniques also emphasize “flashiness” and dexterity, but in a unique way that makes it distinctly extravagant and exotic. The authentic performance of this style is integrated with dance, and may incorporate other traditions as well depending on the formality of the event. Today it remains largely rooted in its history and is not primarily seen outside the context of its culture.


    Jazz Guitar = BJJ
    Also has a comprehensive toolset, but applied to a completely different aesthetic. This style is very technical and knowledge oriented. Learning the basics is crucial in order to begin a sophisticated understanding of music/fighting in general, and additional learning introduces increasingly complex new elements to the basics. Many of its high level performances are not easily grasped or appreciated by the average person. But those in the know, especially advanced practitioners, see virtually endless possibilities in it with many layers of subtle but significant intricacies.


    Funk Guitar = Wrestling
    Shares some clear overlap with the previous style, but is defined by narrower parameters and a different overall focus. This style is less about complex knowledge and more about a strong “driving” energy and pace. It is usually not the first style that comes to mind when thinking of guitar music/martial arts, despite being one of the most useful for developing a key part of the essentials. Rhythm fundamentals (e.g. 16th note counting) / grappling fundamentals (e.g. TDD) should be part of every practitioner’s personal style but are all too often lacking.


    Reggae Guitar = Judo
    Practices similar fundamentals as the previous style and shares some overlap in technique. It is known as a “gentle” style, due to its minimalistic and subdued nature, but as a result it is sometimes also perceived as somewhat monotonous. The exclusive use of this style alone can leave a lot to be desired, although traditional practitioners prefer it this way. The rhythm/grappling focus with the relatively low prevalence of this style can make it uniquely effective when used selectively and set up properly.




    Thanks for humoring me, nerds
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2018
  2. Sanshou Kid

    Sanshou Kid Brown Belt

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    I would argue that folk guitar would be more in line with wrestling, given the tradition of said and, the fact that both 'guitar' and 'wrestling' can be prefixed with "Folk" to mean a certain style.

    Interesting musings, I enjoyed reading.
     
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  3. Playswellwithlawndarts

    Playswellwithlawndarts Jack of all trades Master of Some

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    How high are you right now. Not going to judge TS
     
  4. MartinGibson86

    MartinGibson86 Purple Belt

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    Ben "Funky" Askren would approve.
     
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  5. Jackonfire

    Jackonfire Senior Modulator Staff Member Senior Moderator

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    Thoroughly enjoyable read.
     
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  6. Blue_Lou

    Blue_Lou Orange Belt

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    Well to most people folk guitar sounds a lot like classical, esp when both are played on an acoustic. I think the official difference historically is that classical is composed by the organized “elite” and folk is played by the common people thru tradition. IIRC something like that
     
  7. Blue_Lou

    Blue_Lou Orange Belt

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    Lol. I walk around at a permanent 4/10 at least. At the time of writing maybe a 7
     
  8. Bluesbreaker

    Bluesbreaker Brown Belt

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    I think djent/BJJ. Those are what the kids like these days.
     
  9. Crimson Glory

    Crimson Glory Go Leafs Go!

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    Actually not a bad thread TS.

    At first I thought you were shitting on Rock/Metal by comparing it to TMA's, but your comparison makes sense.

    The Boxing to Blues comparison is pretty on point aswell.
     
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  10. Blue_Lou

    Blue_Lou Orange Belt

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    Thanks for the feedback y’all. For those who play, what’s your specialty? Like most I spent my early years only playing blues and various styles of rock so I consider that my base. Lately I’ve been delving more into the jazz side of things, though I’m only at about a blue belt level. Also been working on my funk chops and getting used to the grindy feel of staccato strumming..
     
  11. Leonard Haid

    Leonard Haid Minimalist Living the Illusory Dream

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    Sambo/Semistrunka

     
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  12. Sanshou Kid

    Sanshou Kid Brown Belt

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    Acoustic stuff most, I enjoy playing fingerstyle. I too have been delving into more jazz, more on the gypsy jazz side. Also a big fan of playing over tanpura backing tracks, getting almost a sitar sound out of the nylon string acoustic, can recommend doing that, really makes you work on modal phrasing and shit.

    Base would be bluesy rock kinda stuff, much like you and, I would wager most people. I've been playing more piano of late, trying out jazz and classical kinda things.
     
  13. Crimson Glory

    Crimson Glory Go Leafs Go!

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    I'd make another point about Boxing = Blues, in that it is often an essential part of fighting, no matter the sport, Kickboxing, MMA, Muay Thai, any standup striking sport, you need to have decent Boxing, defense in particular, in order to succeed.

    Blues is found in many styles, and is, along with Classical music, considered the Granddaddy to modern music. Boxing has influenced pretty much every modern of combat sport that has stand-up, by use of gloves, time limits, rounds, judging, ring etc.
     
  14. Blue_Lou

    Blue_Lou Orange Belt

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    Paul Gilbert agrees. Seems like there are certain principles in blues that can benefit your overall playing.
     
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  15. Crimson Glory

    Crimson Glory Go Leafs Go!

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    Yeah, Im not a fan of this video though. I disagree with some of what he says in it. Particularly with his comment that Metal doesnt do anything other than play minor or is so limited compared to Blues. Not true at all. There are Metal styles played in every key, major, minor, whatever. Prog, Glam and Power Metal are testament to that. Metal, you can basically add whatever you want in terms of notes and ideas, as long as theres guitar and some distortion, its Metal.
     
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  16. Blue_Lou

    Blue_Lou Orange Belt

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    I’d say that’s more a definition of rock, although even that’s pretty generous. But I wouldn’t get hung up on the definition, I don’t think he was speaking strictly, just noting what’s typical. Plus there are exceptions to every rule in every genre. My main takeaway from the video is that the simplicity of the blues toolset compels you to create your own unique complexity from it, while reinforcing fundamentals like legato, note bending, improvisation, and interval recognition. All of that exists in metal but are much more commonly found in blues.
     
  17. TankAbbott4Eva

    TankAbbott4Eva Red Belt

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    Truth, you'd have to be baked as fuck to think of this (and I think the idea is cool FWIW).
     
  18. Blue_Lou

    Blue_Lou Orange Belt

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    Looks like Khabib really funked up Conor last night.

    Unfortunately he may have also funked himself out of a visa, $2 million check, his strap and potentially some of his teammates careers.

    In the offchance he goes overseas and joins ONE, him vs Ben would make a funky ass fight.

    [/shameless punbump]
     
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