Disclaimer: This article is NOT for those people who are taking part in any of the air-guitaring championships held in the world. Of course you can read and prolly get some tips that you can make use. But, you CANNOT hold me responsible for your foibles or follies. Danke!
Air-guitaring. What every n00b to the world of Rock and Heavy-Metal starts doing. He [Please note that anytime I say he, it should mean he/she for the feminist! For the others who don't give a hoot, read it as he only] carries it on the climb to understanding more complex stuff on the music - riffs, tones, scales, vibratos, finger vibratos etc. He carries it on as he discovers new bands, as his preference of rock is finely grained towards the Metal or towards the soft side. He carries it with him through the jaded phases of his girl friend dumping him, through the phase of rocking pubbing, through the phase of terrace-boozing, etc.
Let's start of with the definition of air-guitaring for the uninitiated shall we. What else than Wikipedia, ;-)!
Air guitar is the act of pretending to play guitar, consisting of an exaggerated strumming motion and often coupled with loud singing or lip-synching. Air guitar is generally used in the imaginary simulation of loud electric guitar music, especially rock, heavy metal, and so on. Although it is acceptable to play air guitar to acoustic songs, it is an act traditionally left to rock. Headbanging is often used in conjunction with an air guitar. Real guitar players also often play air guitar quite accurately while listening to their favorite artists.
Well, according to me, it's a semaphore to show your interest in the rock/metal music. It's ultimately _the_ best conversation starter in a pub, when awesome metal/rock stuff is going on. There's nothing like getting out of your chair, going to the middle of the "floor" and bang your head and wave your arms frantically, doing a "Young" [relate: ACDC] move and play your stuff out!
So, how do you do get to be a master at it? Well, I'll try and analyse my experience in air-guitaring, which has been lauded to be one of the most "original" ones. I have a good eye for such things, and hence will try and introduce you into steps, guides that will help you get on to the podium of "air-guitaring".
Rule # 1: Do NOT learn the guitar professionaly.
If you start learning the guitar professionaly, you will be introduced into the right world o guitaring, which is to hold a guitar and then play. Now, that is NOT to be done by the air-guitarists. We, as a clan are not expected to play the guitar as well. We just sport the long hair, the energy and the fingers needed to strum air, which has very little friction btw. Furthermore, if you learn the guitar professionaly, you will tend to have a guitar and think too much about it. So air-guuitaring just phases outta your mind. The next time you hear a song, you will go to fetch your guitar than just going wild in the air!
Rule #2: Keep watching videos of the great guitarists. Practice makes perfect. Watch the videos and follow them like how a lotta Americans follow the "exercise videos". W-P-R is the mantra of the day. Watch-Play-Repeat. [Not, Water-Plans-Regularly] And again, watch-play-repeat! Chant this mantra everyday when you wake up and every night before you go to sleep.
Rule #3: Think that you are Joe Satriani, Mammstein, Eric Johnson, Hendrix, Clapton...[You get the drift]. Positive thinking. That's the buzz word of all the self help books. Being a self help article, I thought I should include it as well. Anyhoo, it does help. More than imagining you as them, imagine you playing for a crowd willing to die for you, willing to remove their tops for you, holding out their cigarette lighters, cheering you on, no matter what you do. [In reality tho, you are in the crowd, but hey, get back to positive thinking] ;-)! So, imagine you playing these raging riffs, plucking and tapping your way to glory. Traversing excellent paths through the death-defying scales. Imagine your air-guitar to be a part of you, an extension that you can't live without. An extension that is your forte. An extension, which you can mould, and make it do whatever you want!
Rule #4: Wear and cultivate the attitude.
An opportunity missed is well just that, an opporunity missed to exhibit your talent as a rock/metal freak. What is the use if you just wear black all the time, have metal chains hanging around you [sport a weird haircut if you are one of the new-age metal freakos L-) ]. You need _the_ attitude to pull of an excellent air-guitaring performance. :-D! What I think really helps is imagine that you are half way down your vodka bottle, drinking neat. Your favorite metal/rock music going on, the music twitching every part of your body. It's flowing through your nerves, your veins and you just let loose.
Initially you may look like you are going into fits, or are molesting a lab rat, but practice with the right videos and you will get there dude(ttes). It actually helps if you imagine a guitar there and are running your fingers through it!
So, get out there and start what is needed to become the air-guitarist that you should be ;-)! Btw, there are lots of competitions for Air-Guitaring [source: Air guitar - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia] You can check them out at the end of the Wikipedia page. Hopefully, see you next time with your arms flouting in the air like there's no other way to go!
References: Images - http://www.bbc.co.uk/cambridgeshire/music/2003/07/air_gallery/gallery3.shtml Definition - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_guitar
Further from here I think I should try and arrange an Air-Guitaring competition at one of the pubs here in Bangalore. If there are any people interested, post a comment. Prolly we can organize something ;-)! Say What? Hell yeah....