Go with some weightless plastics in the shallows early and late in the day... flukes, ribbon-tail worms, tubes.... and when all else fails, a wacky rigged Senko is always good for a bass or two around shallow cover!
I know your frustation! 20 years ago I did the same thing. I could catch smallies in the river - easy, but those darn green backs were hard to catch. (talk about having your ego checked)
Smallies and largemouth can be totally different animals. Start with weightless senko type worms and fish any type cover you can find. Either cast way past your target or land your bait very softly near the cover. Twitch the bait past the cover and as soon as you clear it - kill it. You bite should happen on a slow fall. Remember that most lakes get pounded and you need to be alittle more stealthy than the last guy. Good fishin!
I'm not the only one that feels that way! Whenever the susqy floods i'll hit some local lakes, and it can be very humbling.. I've learned to use the same tactics but try different colors than i use on the river and it's helped.. I like to fish the one pond at work and try some stuff out to gain some confidence.. It's amazing how many more fish you catch when you have confidence in a lure and stick with it