When I was a senior in high school, the staff guy training me told me to learn guitar for club. Whenever he told me to do something I did it. So I went out and taught myself guitar. After a little practice I was playing guitar at club, campaigners and camps. It is a very useful skill.
I quickly came to notice a couple unfortunate club guitar player types… Have you noticed these?
Mr. Abrupt – This person has no idea how to smoothly end a song, or start it. They like to say, "That’s it" after playing the last chord. Like freight train the song stops.
Mr. I-Could-Never-Clap-But-I-Still-Try-To-Play-The-Guitar – This person has a terminal defect that will never improve. No amount of lessons or experience will ever solve it. They are known for getting behind or ahead of the beat. You can notice this person when at some point during the club kids are looking at each other trying to figure out what happened.
Mr. Off-Key – This person does almost everything right except they don’t know how to start a song in the right key. They just need to find one person who can sing the first line right. Here’s a tip, if you start off key… STOP the song and start over.
Mr. Show-Off – My biggest pet-peeve. This person doesn’t realize club guitar is about getting the kids to sing, it is solid rhythm guitar, no more. This person likes to bring more than one guitar to club, always wants to be plugged in, and usually spends the entire pre-club time playing guitar mostly by himself. It is my biggest pet-peeve because they have all the right technical skills down but miss the point of music in club. There is a right time for a little ditty (i.e. Sweet Home Alabama), but they never seem to get that it is not a performance.
Fortunately I never got good enough to be mr. show-off and for some reason I can clap and sing in key (most of the time). What I excelled at is not taking myself too seriously (even with guitar) and always bringing lots of energy. If you do those two things, you will buy time to become solid at all the standard YL songs.