As long as I can remember I have always been in bands and projects with musicians who were better than me.
It actually started when I first picked up the guitar in High School and many of my friends were playing since they were 9. Nine! I had a lot to catch up. But, it got me better, quick. I practiced extra hard because I did not want to be the worst guitarist out of all my friends.
When I started to join metal bands in my neighborhood many of the musicians in them were a lot better then me. I kept playing and learning from them.
I know many younger players (and, some older ones as well) get intimitated by playing with more experienced or better musicians – but, don’t let that stop you.
When I joined Halford, the band got one of the greatest drummers in metal – Bobby Jarzombek. Now, let me explain something. Bobby is a machine. Always on, extremely steady, perfect meter and on top – he is very intuitive, he knows what I’m going to play next. Imagine that. I worked hard to keeping up with him, to be honest. Sometimes humbled, sometimes frustrated I eventually could tear it up alongside Bobby and it was a great triumph.
I found out that many older and more experienced players enjoy teaching younger ones and this is precisely why my Metal Heroes Summer camp works so well. Younger kids look up to to older players in return and love when someone takes the time out and teaches them something. This works for all ages and levels. Sometimes it is important to swallow our pride and just jam with people that are better than us. If someone is unwilling to help out, then find some other musicians.