Tag Archives: Beginner Guitar

How To Play Chords On Guitar

How To Play Chords On Guitar

Learn how to play chords on guitar with this complete guide for beginners.

In this lesson you’ll learn how to strum guitar chords. Audio examples have been provided so that you can hear how the chords sound when being strummed.

Continue reading

christmas guitar tabs

Christmas Guitar Tabs & Chords

Christmas Guitar TABs, notation, chords and lyrics – all in one book! Give your own recital or use the arrangements to accompany a singer or choir. Play sample pieces below.

• Christmas guitar TABS

• Printable sheet music download

• Fingerstyle arrangements for beginner and intermediate players.

• Notation, Chords & Lyrics are all included.

• 14 famous Christmas songs. Continue reading

Beginning Guitar Part 5 : Guitar Amplifiers & Guitar Effects

The electric guitar is a very versatile instrument; by using the guitar’s own controls, the controls on the amplifier and separate electronic effects, the player can create a large variety of sounds.

Electric Guitar Sound

Electric guitars, when plugged straight into an amplifier without any effects, produce a sound that is similar to that of an acoustic guitar, but smoother, without the acoustic ‘sparkle’ and with less dynamic range. This ‘clean’ sound is fine for many situations, and plenty of guitarists (particularly jazz players) do not use any other sounds. However, most guitarists rely on effects to alter the basic clean sound.  The two most common guitar effects are distortion and reverb. Both of these effects are usually present on an amplifier, and can also be produced by effects pedals / processors, etc..

Guitar Effects Pedals & Other Guitar Effects

Effects pedals are small units with foot pedals that allow the guitarist to turn the unit on and off without having to take his or her hands from the guitar whilst playing. There is a wide range of effects available, from distortion (see below) through to pitch-shifters, all of which change the sound of the guitar to greater or lesser degree. In a basic configuration, the guitar lead is plugged into the input of the pedal and another lead is plugged between the output of the pedal and the input of the amplifier.

Effects also come in ‘rack mount’ form. These are designed to fit into a standard 19″ studio rack unit, and the inputs and outputs are usually located on the back of the unit. Rack mount effects are often more sophisticated than effects pedals, and are more suited to use in a recording studio than in a live situation.

Common Guitar Effects – Distortion

Distortion (also called overdrive and fuzz) is basically a way of simulating what happens to the sound if the amp is turned up loud enough to cause the speaker and / or circuitry to distort the sound. This happened naturally in early guitar amps, and became a sound that guitarists sought to encourage rather than to avoid. Nowadays, most amps have a means of creating an overdriven/distorted sound without having to turn them up to their full volume. Many effects pedals and processors are also available that will create this sound in various degrees. Some heavy metal guitarists don’t ever turn the distortion off!

Common Guitar Effects – Reverb

Reverb effects recreate the way sound echoes and reflects around spaces, for example if one was to clap in a cathedral, it would take some time for the sound to completely fade away. What you hear after the initial clap is the reverberation, and this is the sound that reverb effects attempt to emulate. The most common reverb effects type is hall reverb, which, as the name suggests, makes the guitar sound as if it is being played in a hall. Many reverb units have parameters that can be changed, allowing the player to experiment with various types and lengths of reverb. Generally, a bit of reverb is very flattering to a guitar’s natural sound.

Guitar Amplifiers

Guitar amplifiers come in many shapes, sizes and prices. They come either as all-in-one units known as ‘combos’, with amplifier and speakers combined, or as ‘stacks’, where the amplifier (or head) and speakers are separate. Speaker cabinets are referred to as 1×12, 4×12, etc., denoting the number and size of speakers contained within. Amps can either use transistor (solid state) or valve technology, or a mixture of the two. It is generally acknowledged that valve (or tube) amps give a warmer, more pleasant sound. They are also louder; a 30W valve amp will be far louder than a 30W transistor amp. However, valve amps are generally more expensive, and are not as reliable, because the tubes get very hot in use and are liable to fail in time, although they are usually easily replaced.

A recent development is the appearance of modelling amplifiers, which electronically replicate the characteristics of many different classic amplifiers.

Amplifier Channels

Anything other than a very basic amp will have two (or more) channels. This allows the player to set up, for example, a quiet sound for accompaniment playing and a louder sound for lead playing, or a clean sound and a distorted sound. Channels can be selected with a footswitch that plugs into the amp. Amps often have an effects send utility, allowing the player to plug in effects pedals / processors after the amp has distorted the sound. This means that the unwanted noise (hiss) that can be produced by the pedals ism’t amplified to noticeable levels. Amplifiers usually have some tone and equalisation settings, for use in shaping the guitar’s sound in addition to the guitar’s own tone and pickup settings.

This is the last article in the beginner guitar series. We hope that you have learned something about the instrument, and that you have been inspired to take up the guitar.

Related Articles:

Beginning Guitar

Beginning Guitar Part 2 : Guitar Strings & Guitar Tuning

Beginning Guitar Part 3 : Guitar Playing Techniques

Beginning Guitar Part 4 : Guitar Music Notation

Beginning Guitar Part 5 : Guitar Amplifiers & Guitar Effects

blues backing tracks

Blues Backing Tracks by Guitar Scales

Beginning Guitar Part 4 : Guitar Music Notation

Part 4 of our Beginning Guitar series looks at guitar notation and the differences between the different systems.

Guitar Music Notation

Many great guitarists do not read music of any type, relying on their ears and improvisation skills to produce their music. However, it’s a very useful ability to have, and most guitarists can follow chord charts, and read tablature (TAB – see below) at the very least. If you want to become a session guitarist, or are learning classical (Spanish) guitar, you will need to be able to read traditional music notation.

Guitar Chords and Chord Notation

Guitar chords are often represented by chord boxes, which show a top-down view of the guitar neck, with dots or numbers showing where the fingers should be placed. If numbers are used, the index finger is 1, going up to the little finger (pinkie) which is 4.

There is huge variety of guitar chords, and even chords of the same type (e.g. major, minor, seventh) can be played in different ways. The most common types of chord are major chords (represented by just their pitch name, i.e. ‘A’), minor chords, (represented by their pitch followed by ‘m’, i.e. ‘Am’) and dominant seventh chords (shown by the pitch followed by a ”7′, i.e. A7 – often just called ‘seven’ or seventh’ chords). Generally, major chords give a happy, bright sound, minor chords give a sad, subdued sound, and seventh chords give an expectant sound.

Chords are often shown just by their symbols (i.e. A, am, A7), and a chord chart is simply a sequence of chord symbols for a guitarist to follow. The guitarist should choose for themselves how each chord is played (if they knows more than one way of playing it!). Below are examples of guitar chord boxes, and a sample chord chart.

A major chord

A Chord Guitar

A Guitar Chord

See more here: A Chord Guitar

E minor chord

Em Guitar Chord

Em Guitar Chord

See More Here: Em Guitar Chord

Sample Chord Chart:

Example Guitar Chord Chart

Chord Chart

In the chord chart above, the guitarist would play one and a half bars of a D minor 7 chord, half a bar of G dominant seventh chord, followed by a further two bars of D minor 7. The guitarist would usually just strum the chords, using a suitable strumming pattern for the song.

Guitar Tablature (Guitar TAB)

Tablature is actually a very old form of notation, having been used for early fretted instruments. It is a visual representation of the guitar neck, showing at which fret the fingers should be positioned. It is very easily understood, especially if the reader already knows roughly how the music goes, but is not as flexible as traditional music notation, and does not represent the note rhythms (as opposed to pitches) very well. Tablature is often shown in conjunction with traditional music notation. Here is ‘Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star’ in traditional music notation (top line) and TAB (bottom line) – see if you can work out how it works:

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star Guitar TAB

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star Guitar TAB

Traditional Music Notation

Traditional music notation shows the pitches and durations of notes. Generally, the vertical position of the note heads on the stave shows how high or low their pitch is, and their duration is shown by the note head’s shape and by the presence and shape of the tail by the side of the note head. The way in which notes are grouped also gives the reader an instant idea of the rhythm the notes should be played in. It may seem complicated at first, but is a fairly simple system once the basics have been mastered.

Related Articles:

Beginning Guitar

Beginning Guitar Part 2 : Guitar Strings & Guitar Tuning

Beginning Guitar Part 3 : Guitar Playing Techniques

Beginning Guitar Part 4 : Guitar Music Notation

Beginning Guitar Part 5 : Guitar Amplifiers & Guitar Effects

Guitar Notes

guitar scales chart

Guitar Scales Chart Download - Click On Image For Details

Beginning Guitar Part 3 : Guitar Playing Techniques

Guitar Playing Techniques – Using A Plectrum Vs Fingerstyle

Playing With A Plectrum

Plectrums are used for strumming chords, and for playing single-note (when only one note is sounded at a time) riffs and solos. Players such as Steve Vai and Joe Satriani use plectrums, using various picking techniques to play very fast passages. Using a plectrum allows players to play very fast single note lines and play rhythm riffs, which is why most metal, rock and blues players use one. It is easier to produce a loud, clear sound, and less tiring to strum chords using a plectrum rather than the fingers. However, players are limited to strumming chords and playing either single note lines or playing chords in which the notes are on neighbouring strings. This means that it is not ideal for solo playing (i.e. as opposed to playing in an ensemble / band). Beginner guitarists should start with a reasonably heavy pick – it should have a very small amount of flex, but should not be totally unflexible, and definitely avoid the thinnest picks.

Guitar Fingerstyle Playing

When the fingers and the thumb are used to sound the notes (or fingers and a thumbpick), it is often called ‘fingerstyle’ playing. This allows the player to play more than one note at the same time, and to play music that has more than one part (i.e. keep a bass line going whilst playing a lead line over the top). Using fingerstyle technique, it is much easier to play solo music, and also to make accompaniments that are more interesting than just strumming chords. This is why folk players such as Bert Jansch, solo jazz guitarists such as Martin Taylor, and all classical guitarists use this technique.

Many folk and rock guitarists develop both plectrum and finger-based styles, and use the best one for the situation. In classical guitar playing, notes are always sounded with the fingers.

Related Articles:

Beginning Guitar

Beginning Guitar Part 2 : Guitar Strings & Guitar Tuning

Beginning Guitar Part 3 : Guitar Playing Techniques

Beginning Guitar Part 4 : Guitar Music Notation

Beginning Guitar Part 5 : Guitar Amplifiers & Guitar Effects

blues backing tracks

Blues Backing Tracks by Guitar Scales

Beginning Guitar Part 2 : Guitar Strings And Guitar Tuning

Beginning Guitar – Guitar Strings

Acoustic Guitar Strings

Acoustic guitars are strung with steel strings (often simply called ‘acoustic’ strings on the packet). It’s best to stick with medium or light gauge strings to start with. Very light gauge (the lighter the gauge, the thinner the strings) strings can be easier to play, but can also be looser, causing notes to be inadvertently bent out of tune. Heavier strings generally sound louder and ‘fuller’ than medium or light gauge strings, but notes and chords are harder to hold down, which may cause fret buzz and / or discomfort for the beginner.

Sets of acoustic guitar strings usually have four ‘wound’ stings (the strings have thin wire wound around them) for the bottom strings, and two non-wound strings for the two highest strings. This differentiates them from electric sets, which are usually comprised of three wound strings (the lowest strings) and three non-wound strings (the highest).

Electric Guitar Stings

Electric guitar strings are usually lighter gauge than acoustic strings. Acoustic strings will work on an electric, and visa versa, but it’s not advisable string an electric guitar with acoustic stings, as they are not built to withstand the increased tension and may get damaged. Very generally, light gauge strings are favoured by heavy metal / rock players, and heavier strings are used by blues and jazz guitarists. Jazz guitarists often use heavy, ‘flatwound’ guitar strings to aid the speed and fluidity of their playing. Flatwound strings are wound with smooth metal and are not ridged like standard wound guitar strings.

Beginner electric guitarists will find sets of ‘nines’ or ‘tens’ (the number is the width of the highest string) most suitable.

Classical Guitar Strings

Classical guitars are strung with nylon (or similar) strings, the lowest three of which are wound with metal. Strings for classical guitars will be marked as such on the packets. Most classical guitars are built to be strung with medium tension strings. A classical guitar could be seriously damaged if strung with steel (acoustic / electric) strings.

Guitar Strings Advice

Over time and with use, all guitar strings lose their brightness and clarity, and may also be less likely to stay in tune. Many professional guitarists change strings before every gig. Some classical guitarists change their bass strings more often than their treble strings, as these lose their brightness sooner. If a guitar has been sitting in a shop for a long time the strings may need replacing. It’s a good idea to ask the guitar seller if they can put new strings on, not only because your new guitar will sound better, but also so that you can watch how they do it!

Guitar Tunings

Standard tuning for all guitars is when the strings are tuned to the following pitches: E, A, D, G, B, E, starting from the lowest string. The high ‘E’ string is two octaves higher than the lowest. Many variations on this scheme exist, two common ones being ‘Dropped D tuning’, in which the lowest string is tuned down a tone to a D, and ‘DADGAD’, in which the strings are tuned to those notes (i.e. D A D G A D). Blues guitarists (particularly slide guitarists) often use open E or G tunings – which means that when the open strings are strummed they produce a major chord. Classical guitarists also commonly use dropped D tuning, and occasionally use a tuning in which the third string is dropped a semitone to an F sharp, to replicate the tuning of early guitars.

Without either an electronic guitar tuner (devices that display how sharp or flat individual guitar strings are) or another instrument / device to provide a reference pitch, guitars can be tuned to themselves. This means that although the strings aren’t strictly producing their correct pitches, all of the strings are tuned proportionally to each other, and the instrument won’t sound out of tune if played on its own.

I would advise all beginner guitarists to purchase an electronic tuner. Although you should not come to rely on it (by regularly practicing tuning up without it), it will save you a lot of time in the long run, and if a guitar is properly tuned, your playing will sound much better.

Part 3 of this Beginning Guitar series covers guitar playing techniques.

Related Articles:

Beginning Guitar

Beginning Guitar Part 2 : Guitar Strings & Guitar Tuning

Beginning Guitar Part 3 : Guitar Playing Techniques

Beginning Guitar Part 4 : Guitar Music Notation

Beginning Guitar Part 5 : Guitar Amplifiers & Guitar Effects

guitar scales chart

Guitar Scales Chart Download - Click On Image For Details

Beginning Guitar

Beginning Guitar Part 1

It’s hard to imagine, but every famous guitar player was a beginner once. Clapton, Vai, Metheny, Bream et al – each had to learn how to tune a guitar, how to play an E chord, what a scale was, etc. Our Beginning Guitar articles have been written to provide answers to the many questions a beginner guitarist may have.

Beginning Guitar: Types Of Guitar

What’s the difference between an acoustic guitar, a classical guitar and an electric guitar? What sort of guitar do I need?

The position of the notes and the pitches the strings are tuned to are the same on every standard guitar, be it classical, electric or acoustic – if you can play a tune on a classical guitar, the fingering will be exactly the same on an electric. This is why many guitarists own and play more than one kind of guitar. But, if you are beginning guitar, you’re probably only going to be looking at one kind of instrument to get started on. So, which guitar should you buy?

Beginning Guitar – Acoustic Guitar

An acoustic guitar does not rely on electronic amplification to make a sound. The sound produced by plucking / strumming the strings is amplified within the hollow body of the guitar, and emitted via the sound-hole (the large hole underneath the strings on the front of the instrument). Acoustic guitars are strung with steel strings, and give the ‘twangy’, ‘metallic’ sound that is common in rock, pop and folk music. (Acoustic guitars are also referred to as ‘steel-string guitars’.) Acoustic guitars are most often used to accompany other instruments or singers, although they are played solo too. If you want to learn and play songs, and develop some solo playing skills, but do not wish to play in a band, an acoustic guitar is a good place to start. You can always get an electric guitar later on.

Acoustic guitars can often be more physically demanding to play for the beginning guitarist, as their stings are thicker than those on an electric and often the action (the space between the strings and the fretboard) is higher, meaning the notes are harder to hold down.

Electro-acoustic guitars are acoustic guitars that have been fitted with pickups, allowing them to be plugged into an amplifier. Electro-acoustic guitars are useful in a band and/or recording situation.

Beginning Guitar – Classical Guitar

A classical guitar, although strictly speaking an acoustic guitar (as it does not rely on electric amplification), is hardly ever referred to as such. Other names for a classical guitar include Spanish guitar and nylon-string guitar. Classical guitars produce a mellow, less metallic sound than acoustic guitars. They are typically used to play unaccompanied classical and Spanish music, but are also used in duets and as part of larger ensembles. Classical guitars are occasionally heard in rock and pop music, being recognisable by their latin or Spanish sound.

Classical guitar playing is more of a rigid discipline than acoustic and electric guitar playing, with a recognised technique and emphasis on music reading and interpretation rather than improvisation and composition.

Beginning Guitar – Electric Guitar

Electric guitars rely on electrical amplification to produce their sound. When played without an amplifier, they only produce a very quiet, ‘tinny’ sound. Electric guitars have pickups under the strings to convert the vibrations into an electrical signal, and have sockets in their bodies into which a guitar lead can be plugged. The other end of the lead is plugged into an amplifier (or an effects unit – see part 5). Electric guitars usually have controls to vary the sound that they produce. Standard controls are volume and tone knobs and pickup selector switches. Electric guitars often have more than one pickup because a string produces a different tone along its length – having more than one pickup allows the guitarist to select which tone they need. Using the bridge pickup results in a ‘brighter’ tone, whilst the neck pickup produces a smoother sound. Electronic effects such as distortion and reverb are often applied to the sound produced by an electric guitar, and it is this tonal versatility that makes the electric guitar suited to playing many kinds of modern music.

Electric guitars, like acoustic guitars, are strung with metal strings, but strings for electric guitars are usually of a ‘lighter’ (i.e. thinner) gauge. (More about guitar strings in part 2).

More information on guitar types here: Types Of Guitar

Beginning Guitar – What Makes A Good Guitar?

Although largely a matter of taste, what makes a good guitar generally comes down to its playability and its sound. Most entry-level guitars are perfectly good instruments, and you may never feel the need to change! It is worth noting that guitars can vary, even between instruments of the same model, so it is recommended that you go to a shop and try before you buy, rather than purchasing online.

Playability is how easy it is to play a guitar, how well it stays in tune, how easily it can be tuned, etc. Generally a more expensive guitar will have better hardware (tuners, nut, bridge, electronics, etc.), will be made of better woods, and will be of higher quality construction. Today, however, even an entry-level guitar is likely to be playable, with a straight neck, adequate hardware, and the ability to hold its tuning, although it may be prudent to avoid the very cheapest guitars (often those without recognisable brand names), which can have tuning and/or playability issues.

Beginning Guitar – Guitar Buying Tips

Check the intonation by making sure that strings remain in tune wherever you play on the neck, and that if it’s an electric guitar they are still reasonably in tune after heavy string bending and tremolo bar usage. Cheap guitars (particularly acoustics) can sometimes have an uncomfortably high ‘action’ (the distance of the strings from the neck). Make sure you try several examples, to make sure that the action isn’t overly high. Don’t buy an acoustic if there is any serious rattling / buzzing / vibration from the bridge or body. A little bit of fret buzz is usually acceptable in electric guitars, and won’t be heard once amplified.
 A beginner should buy the guitar that is the easiest to play, especially if it’s an acoustic or classical instrument. If the action is excessively high, and notes cannot be formed without a great deal of physical effort, you are less likely to stick with the instrument.

As you progress with the instrument, you will find it easier to recognise what makes a good guitar. For this reason, it is worth taking an experienced guitarist with you to help you choose.

Related Articles:

Beginning Guitar

Beginning Guitar Part 2 : Guitar Strings & Guitar Tuning

Beginning Guitar Part 3 : Guitar Playing Techniques

Beginning Guitar Part 4 : Guitar Music Notation

Beginning Guitar Part 5 : Guitar Amplifiers & Guitar Effects

Blues Backing Tracks

Guitar Scales Blues Backing Tracks

Types Of Guitar

Guitar Types

The types of guitar and the differences between them. The modern guitar family is a large one; the instrument, as it has evolved, has split into several sub-groups, each of which is suited for a particular style of music or playing. Below is a description of the main types of guitar.

Types Of Guitar – Acoustic Guitar

(Also known as Steel-String Guitar / Folk Guitar)

Types Of Guitar - Acoustic

Types Of Guitar - Acoustic Guitar

Whilst the term ‘acoustic guitar’ strictly also applies to the classical guitar, it is usually used to describe the steel-string guitar. It’s an extremely versatile instrument, and can be played with a plectrum (pick) or with the fingers. Many people enjoy the acoustic guitar simply by learning a few chords and using it as an accompaniment instrument. However, it is capable of performing very complex music, and is a much ‘freer’ discipline than the classical guitar, with a wide range of playing styles and techniques. It is traditionally used for folk / blues music, but the use of acoustic guitars in mainstream pop and rock music is currently booming.

Famous Acoustic Guitar Players

Famous acoustic guitarists include:
Nick Drake, Tommy Emmanuel, Davy Graham, John Renbourne, Bert Jansch, Gordon Giltrap

Types Of Guitar – Classical Guitar

Also known as Nylon-String / Spanish Guitar

Types Of Guitar - Classical

Types Of Guitar - Classical Guitar

The classical guitar has its own technique and its players tend to concentrate more on music reading and interpretation than improvisation. (Although, as ever, there are exceptions.) Classical guitar repertoire ranges from renaissance music inherited from the lute and vihuela to modern compositions from contemporary composers. Classical guitars are strung with nylon strings, the bottom three of which are wound with metal. A classical guitar should not be strung with acoustic guitar strings – the higher tension may cause irreparable damage. Click here for an article on the origins of the classical guitar.

Famous Classical Guitarists

Famous Classical guitarists include:
Julian Bream, John Williams, Andres Segovia, David Russell, Narciso Yepes.

Types Of Guitar – Electric Guitar

Types Of Guitar - Electric Guitar

Types Of Guitar - Electric Guitar

Nowadays for many people the word ‘guitar’ means ‘electric guitar’. Electric guitars come in a wide array of shapes and sizes, and choice of instrument can sometimes be as much a fashion statement as than a musical choice. Today a good electric guitar can be bought for very little money. Spend $250 – $300 and you could get an instrument that will last throughout your career. Of course, you can spend much larger amounts on an instrument, and some guitars – especially if they have some sort of rock pedigree – can be bought as investments.
Electric guitars rely on amplification to produce anything but an extremely quiet tinny sound. (That said, many a song has been written using an unamplified electric guitar.) Even in hollow-bodied semi-acoustic electric guitars the sound is produced by amplification.
Electric guitar playing can range from strumming a few chords as a song accompaniment to virtuoso lead playing.
The need for a means of amplifying an acoustic guitar arose when big band orchestras increased in size in the 1930’s, and the guitar could no longer be heard over the rest of the instruments. Various innovators, including Les Paul and Adolph Rickenbacher looked into ways of achieving this, and the means of using magnetic pickups to produce electrical current from the vibration of the strings that was developed at the time is still in use today.
The electric guitar is usually played with a plectrum, and its role is generally as part of an ensemble, playing either rhythm or lead parts. (Of course, there are exceptions to this, but it is far less frequent to see an electric guitar being played solo than an acoustic guitar.)
Different kinds of solid-bodied electric guitars, despite their lack of any sound chamber, produce different and distinctive sounds. For example, the Fender Telecaster (or ‘Tele’) is known for producing a more ‘trebly’ sound than a Fender Stratocaster (‘Strat’). Gibsons traditionally produce a warmer, thicker sound than Fenders (mainly due to their usually being fitted with ‘Humbucker’ pickups.) The design of a guitar also affects the sound that it produces because it affects the way the guitar is played. For example Jazz guitar necks are often very thin, to facilitate extremely fast chord changes and soloing (often aided by having flatwound strings). This engenders ‘jazzy’ style playing. A guitar designed for heavy-rock musicians, such as the Ibanez JEM series, would have a very low action (the distance between the strings and the neck), allowing for very fast playing.

Other types of guitar

Electro-acoustic

Electro-acoustic guitars are acoustic guitars fitted with a pickup device that can feed the sound to an amplifier.

Dreadnought

A large acoustic guitar with a deep body, originally designed by Martin guitars. They are generally very loud, with a powerful bass response.

Resonator Guitars

A guitar that has metal resonator cones in its body to produce a load and distinctive sound. Mostly associated with blues music. The most famous makers of resonator guitars were Dobro, a brand now owned by Gibson.

Semi-acoustic

Semi-acoustic guitars are electric guitars that have a hollow body and pickups. Examples include the Gibson ES-175.

Pedal-steel

Developed from lap-steel guitars, these instruments are played horizontally on a stand. Notes are stopped with a metal bar rather than against the fret wire, and a number of pedals can change the pitch of the strings. Playing can be of a virtuoso level, and the sound is instantly identifiable as a main constituent of American country music.

Ukulele (Uke)

A small, four-stringed instrument with origins in Hawaii (ukulele is roughly ‘jumping flea’ in Hawaiian). Currently enjoying a huge boom across the world due to its handy size and accessibility. Whether this is a cult phenomenon or not remains to be seen.

C Major Scale Guitar

C major scale has no sharps or flats. It can be played in open position as shown below:

C Major Scale Guitar TAB

c major scale guitar

C Major Scale Guitar TAB

There are various other ways of playing c major scale on guitar. The following tab and notation shows a two-octave c major scale played in the 7th position.

C Major Scale Guitar 2 Octave TAB

C Scale Guitar 2 Octave

C Major Scale Guitar 2 Octave

You can use movable guitar scale shapes to play C major scales on guitar. This way, you only have to learn the fingering for one major scale in order to play them all, by playing the same shape in different positions on the fretboard. See all of the movable major scale guitar shapes here: Major Scale Guitar

Related Pages:

Major Scale Guitar

Guitar Scales Chart

Guitar Practice

If you want to learn the guitar quickly and effectively, you will have to master the art of separating guitar practice from guitar playing. Due to the highly accessible nature of the guitar, it is extremely easy to slip into ‘playing’, rather than ‘practising’ mode. Playing is all very well, but if the aim is to improve it is not an effective use of time, and, at worst, it is a means of cementing bad habits and falling into tired old patterns – and you will become a poorer player as a result.

How To Practice Guitar

Ten Tips For Learning The Guitar Quickly

Guitar Practice Tip 1 – Make Every Note Count

In rock, jazz, acoustic and classical guitar, there are always parts of a piece that fall naturally under the fingers, and likewise parts – perhaps bars, perhaps just single notes, or parts of phrases – that present difficulties. These are the parts that need practising, not the bits you can already play. Only spend your practice time on areas where the time needs to be spent. Every note is important, so make sure you play every note perfectly.

Guitar Practice Tip 2 – Practise With A Metronome

Practising with a metronome is a great discipline, and one of the best ways of improving the speed and smoothness of your playing. Another bonus is that the results are quantifiable – you will know how fast you can play, therefore will be know how much you have improved (you will improve) and you will be able to set yourself targets. Always refer to tip 1, though, and make every note count.

Guitar Practice Tip 3 – Set Aside A Time For Practice

… Even if it’s just ten minutes. Be strict with yourself, and concentrate. You could even use a timer. If your eyes glaze over and you start to ‘noodle’ or if you find yourself going over just the bits you enjoy playing, stop immediately and return to the task in hand. Once the allotted practice time is up, you can get back to your playing.

Guitar Practice Tip 4 – Know What You Want To Achieve

If you don’t know where you’re headed, you won’t go anywhere. Perhaps you want to improve a certain technique – sweep-picking, for example, or, if you’re a classical guitarist, perhaps you want to perfect a certain bar. Before you start to practise, know what you want to achieve with your time.

Guitar Practice Tip 5 – Set Yourself Targets

Closely related to practice tip 4, but with a more ‘long-term’ view. Work out where you want to go with your playing – are you aiming for stardom or do you just to be the best you can be? Do you want to take a solo at the local jam night or do you want to be a proessional seesion guitarist? Once you know what the ultimate aim is, you can start to make the necessary steps towards it.

Guitar Practice Tip 6 – Visualise Yourself Achieving Your Goals

Imagine yourself getting appreciative looks from your fellow musicians at the jazz club, or performing your exam pieces flawlessly. Whatever it is, get used to seeing it – it makes it much more likely that soon it will actually be happening. Say out loud ‘I can play xxx’, or ‘I know this chord’, etc, – play mind games with yourself – positive thinking is a powerful means of creating success.

Guitar Practice Tip 7 – Be The Teacher

No matter how much or how little experience you have as a guitarist, teaching, or pretending to teach someone else, will lead to you having a better understanding of the subject. At first it will cause you to analyse the subject, then, by explaining it and perhaps by being questioned about it (or imagining yourself being questioned about it), you will tie up any loose ends you may have, and the concept will become completely clear in your mind. This, ultimately, will give you absolute confidence in the concept and your ability to use it in your playing.

Guitar Practice Tip 8 – Use Other People

Not so much a practice tip, but a very important one nevertheless for quick improvement. Perform in front of other people whenever you can. Bolster your confidence with the praise you will receive, and if you receive any criticism, use it positively, then forget about it. If any aspect of your playing does need work, be happy that your attention has been drawn to it – correct it and move on. Keep pride and ego far away, simply solve any problems and move on. Seek out other guitarists, and listen and learn from them – not just their playing, but their entire approach to the instrument, how they handle themselves, their instrument and equipment (how and when they tune up, playing posture, over-reliance one one technique or style, etc.). Be inspired, not intimidated – take emotion out of the equation and learn from any source you can.

Guitar Practice Tip 9 – Buy A Tuner

Whilst it’s important that you can tune by ear, and something that should be learned as soon as possible after taking up the guitar, you should use an electronic tuner whilst you are practising. Over your entire career, you will probably save yourself hours, if not days, of valuable practice time.

Guitar Practice Tip 10 – Be Selfish

During your alloted practice time, be narrow-minded and totally focused. Don’t answer the phone, don’t look up if someone enters the room, etc. Be selfish, give your guitar practice top priority. Not only will you get the job done faster, your playing, and ambitions, will be given more respect by everyone else.

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