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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar Paperback – October 5, 2010

4.6 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

David Hodge is on faculty at the Berkshire Music School and is the author of The Complete Idiot's Guide(r) to Playing Bass Guitar and The Complete Idiot's Guide(r) to Playing Rock Guitar. He is the managing editor and senior columnist at GuitarNoise.com, one of the most popular and highly regarded guitar instruction.
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Product Details

  • Series: The Complete Idiot's Guide
  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Alpha; Pap/Com edition (October 5, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1615640215
  • ISBN-13: 978-1615640218
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.9 x 10.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #961,129 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

David Hodge teaches guitar, ukulele, bass, piano and other various instruments, as well as music theory and songwriting in Berkshire County in the southwest corner of Massachusetts. In addition to his private students, he also teaches group classes at the Great Barrington South County Center of the Berkshire Community College.

Since 1999, David has been the Managing Editor and Senior Writer for the highly praised, free online tutorial site, Guitar Noise (www.guitarnoise.com), where his lessons are read by over two million people from more than a 160 countries across the world and have earned him an international reputation as a teacher with an easy, down-to-earth style. He also regularly contributes to Acoustic Guitar Magazine.

He is the author of "The Complete Idiot's Guide Guitar" (Alpha Books, October, 2010), "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Playing Rock Guitar" (Alpha Books, March, 2010) and "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Playing Bass Guitar" (Alpha Books, September, 2006) He and Nashville songwriter Casey Kelly (who's written hits for George Strait, Tanya Tucker, Kenny Rogers and others) are co-authors of "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Art of Songwriting."

David occasionally performs in the Berkshire area and also backs up other local musicians at their shows as well as on their recording projects. When the call goes out for a Tahitian ukulele, chances are likely he'll be there!

He also performs frequently at FODfest, a series of free concerts sponsored by Music In Common, held to celebrate the life of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl, who was murdered in Pakistan in 2002. One of David's fondest musical moments was when renowned harmonica genius Corky Siegel played solos on "Man In Black Blues," one of David's original songs, at the FODfest show at the Village Players' Theater in Oak Park, Illinois October 28, 2009.

For more information, visit his website at www.davidhodge.com.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Flyer on December 3, 2010
Format: Paperback
Ive been told the mid40's is when we decide to pick up the guitar and become Bruce, Bono, or James, and I fit that bill. But learning to play well is hard. It requires learning musical timing and theory,, and on top of sore finger tips I almost cried "uncle". That is until i stumbled on David Hodge (author). I started this quest with books and lessons, the books mostly assumed I knew more than I did, and the lessons were taught by great players but not so great teachers. And as an airline pilot my schedule made it very difficult to get to these "less than great" lessons. Great teachers are hard to find. Great teachers on the internet or in books are even harder to find. Exept that is for David. If you are like me, new to guitar and music, this book is the one. David understands how to start small and build on previous lessons. The CD clips have been so helpful for rythm and strumming. With this book my playing has advanced more than with most of my actual lessons! I, like you, have read many of these reviews, and i've paid a lot for a number of guitar books. I dont take time to write reviews, but this book will save you from wasting your time and money. This is the book! Buy it!
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Format: Paperback
This is the second book I have by David Hodge, the first being The Complete Idiot's Guide to Playing Rock Guitar which also comes very highly recommended. If you are just starting out on your journey to learning to play the guitar, then this book will become your best friend. It's like having a tutor sitting next to you, it really is that good. Like with the previous book playing rock guitar, this book will also get you playing straight away. The contents of the book enlist, tuning, chords, rhythmic values, strumming, playing eighth notes , triplets, double stops, arpeggios, bends, slides, major scale, triads, barre chords, playing with a capo, drop D tuning, fills and riffs, to basic travis picking and so on. The list goes on and on.
This book also gives plenty of exercises and short song tracks to learn. I must also praise the theory aspects that you will learn from this book. The book also makes short stops to cover many musical genres like, country, folk, blues, rock and classical. There is also a further study section at the back.
In all this an excellent book.
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Format: Paperback
This is a readable lesson book, which means the student is likely to get through each chapter without bogging down. That doesn't mean learning to play is easy. But it means one is likely to get to the parts where the author tells you things--of like a coach, or, oh yes a teacher-- about getting your own sound out of what's being taught in the given chapter. You don't want to miss those sentences where Hodge guides you through difficulties that are familiar to many guitarists. He discusses that practice in such a sway that it is not mere punishment but has a "raison d'etre",reaason for being. As a result Hodge will get the music into your head and your fingers will thank you for it.

Many guitar books will saddle you with snippets of riffs that sound cool but in the end the new player doesn't know what to do with them, has little musical framework,except maybe that such and such is an example of so and so's signature style. YOu can't do anything with that kind of talk.

At one point in my life I realized I had to get the music at least as much into my head as in my fingers or the guitar would sit in its case. I thought I'd read through this book quickly since I am a pretty experienced player. However I've had so much fun working out bad habits that I've been happily plying the middle chapters for weeks. It is the most useful guitar book I own.
I intend to give copies to my jaming friends for the hollidays.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have not completely gone through the book but it looks like it will be excellent for self taught as well as for a student book. It starts from beginner and goes to intermediate. I am familiar with Mr. Hodge's work from the Guitar Noise website [...] (Check it out). I plan on using it for students. The great thing about this book is that it gets them playing right away. There is also an appendix of "Where to go from here" resources. I will do a follow up review in a month or 2, but if you are looking for a good self taught resource this is it.
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Format: Paperback
With all the guitar instruction materials available online and in stores, it can be a little overwhelming trying to figure out which one is the right one to buy. Many aspiring guitarists get confused when looking for their first book, and end up buying something that either moves too quickly, or leaves a lot of the important details out. If you're looking for a single book that can take you from the very beginning of your guitar-playing journey all the way into intermediate territory, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar is it.

Unlike countless method books out there, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar progressively explores the guitar in a thorough manner, shining light on all the details that new guitarists need to know. The book starts right from the beginning, by describing the different types of guitars you can play, how to get your guitar in tune, sitting and playing positions, and guitar anatomy. As you progress through the book, you'll learn how to strum chords, read music notation and guitar tablature, fingerpick, play unique guitar techniques (like bends, slides, hammer-ons, and pull-offs), create accompaniments and solos, and even play in alternate tunings. To help you assimilate what you're learning, plenty of songs are used throughout the book to get you playing music and using these techniques in real-world situations, instead of aimlessly practicing concepts and exercises in a vacuum.

As you work through each technique, music theory is gradually introduced in a clear and unintimidating fashion, so that--by the end of the book--you'll not only be a good guitarist, but you'll also know how to understand chord and scale construction, and how to read music.
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