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I'm just beginning to learn how to play guitar... where should I start?

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Showing 1-17 of 17 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 16, 2012, 7:43:59 PM PDT
Brad D. says:
What should I be working on first? Playing some sort of scales to get a feel for the guitar and work on finger strength? Try to learn some chords? Or jump into trying to play some simple songs?

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 17, 2012, 2:23:39 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 17, 2012, 9:59:05 PM PDT
tokolosi says:
just learn cool riffs -- you'll be a guitar god in no time.

Posted on Apr 17, 2012, 4:33:54 AM PDT
Chazzzbo says:
Most music instrument stores have easy to use guitar tab charts/posters, as well as DVDs with lessons ranging from basic to advanced. There's also the option of one on one lessons with a trained professional. So much of any musical proficiency stems from innate talent, and a personal desire to express and improve upon it. Best wishes...

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 17, 2012, 4:49:42 AM PDT
S. Stalcup says:
Little bit of all three, Brad. Otherwise, you'll get bored. Not may, but WILL.

Give these a go. 6th string:
0 0 2 0 3 0 5 4 ("Peter Gunn Theme")
0 3 4 5 5 5 3 0 0 (and then down to the 5th and repeat) ("Wipeout")

Or if you're feeling particularly daring
5th: 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 5 5 5 7 7 7 7 (Repeat 3X) 0 0 0 5 5 5 0 0 0 0 0 (and back again)
and then the bridge:
5 (15X) 7 7 7 0 0 0 5 5 5 0
5 (15X) 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 5 5 5 7 (and back to the start again!)

Congratulations, you've just learned "Blitzkrieg Bop" by The Ramones!

Posted on Apr 17, 2012, 4:58:54 AM PDT
batcave says:
put it down and pick up drum sticks.

Posted on Apr 17, 2012, 5:23:43 AM PDT
You can find tutorials on how to play songs on you tube.

Best way to learn the chords is probably to play easy songs that you like.

Barre chords might be difficult to learn to begin with, but once you've got it down it makes it very easy to play:


Posted on Apr 17, 2012, 5:39:04 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 17, 2012, 5:40:26 AM PDT
vivazappa says:
Practice SMASHING it!
But of course you'll need to develop your own style...

I prefer the PETE version over the Paul Stanley version...
But I'm sure that in time you will create the Brad D method ;)

I'm waiting for a true rock star to smash it over some security guard who's f'n with fans!

Posted on Apr 17, 2012, 5:47:59 AM PDT
Aces&8s says:
Google Cowboy Chords. These are the first position chords and probably 80-90% of guitar songs use these chords.
Here is a link to a site I found from Google.

Posted on Apr 17, 2012, 5:51:07 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 17, 2012, 5:53:49 AM PDT
SGs&Strats says:
Learn the chords D, C and G in the first position then practice changing from one to the next. Then learn the pentatonic scale at the fifth fret. These basic building blocks are the back-bone of many hit songs.

just noticed Aces had the same advice...well played :)

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 17, 2012, 5:52:09 AM PDT
I started out with chords. Learn the basic chords and you can start playing some easy songs right away. From there, I branched out to fingerings, picking, etc.

Posted on Apr 17, 2012, 6:04:09 AM PDT
i started with 3 chords (C, D, and G... A will also be helpful) and 3 riffs (stairway to heaven, over the hills and far away, and how many more times)

How Many More Times by Zep is a really easy riff.

black sabbath also has some good riffs to jam to

Posted on Apr 17, 2012, 6:42:12 AM PDT
EvenSteven says:
Hi Brad,

Learn chords 1st, forwards & backwards (literally). This will show you the relationship between keys & basic theory.
Get a good chord book that shows the simple major & minor chords & the different places to play them up & down the neck. Then try out maj/min 6th, 7th & 9ths & where to find them all over the neck.
Then start putting those chords to use & really get into the "lost art" of guitar -Rhythm.
concentrate on some artists that you like & learn what their rhythm guitarist does.
I guartantee you that you will get more gigs as a rhythm guitarist than the "fastest & loudest gun in the west". It's the musican that tries to find the groove or fit into a bands groove that will keep getting work....trust me on this.

Then as you begin to master some rhythm parts, then you will find out that most of your scales (maj/min) match the shape of the chords you learned. Most good solo guys use chord formations to base their lead work from. Learn your major & minor scales & all the extensions up & down the neck & across the fret board. You will soon learn how to do parts all over the neck in high & low octave of simple major & minor scales.

If your goal is to become a mind blowing "shredder", then I'd advise to get a good teacher & really dig in & practice....the rewards are there Brad.

But, I stick to my guns on step 1....become a monster of rhythm 1st & beleive me you will find club work......good luck & have fun.

Posted on Apr 17, 2012, 7:15:39 AM PDT
P. J. Rowan says:
Consider "Pocket Beatles." It has a bunch of the better-known Beatles songs. Above the actual music notation on the staffs, there are pictures of the chords to play the rhythm/accompaniment. You get used to playing a G chord, C chord, etc., and you just hum or sing, and play the chords. This book was written to present easier versions to play - putting the song in a'key' that is easier to play than the actual 'key' the Beatles played it in, so the chords are easier to hold with your hand if you are a beginner. Sone difficulty goes from very easy (Norwegian Wood is super-easy) to more challenging. Long and Winding Road is not that hard, Michelle is not that hard, etc.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 17, 2012, 6:45:57 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 17, 2012, 6:51:43 PM PDT
Brad D. says:
I actually can already play drums.

I took band when I was in middle school, and I was in percussion...that got me started. So I can already read music (because I'd have to play instruments like the xylophone), I understand some music theory, and I played the drums for fun for years.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 17, 2012, 6:49:40 PM PDT
Brad D. says:
I don't think I'm into "shredding". I like John Frusciante's style.

Posted on Apr 18, 2012, 5:10:46 AM PDT
TC says:
just practice switching from chord to chord....E to A to D ---- C to G to F ---- stuff like that for starters.

Posted on Apr 18, 2012, 11:45:36 AM PDT
Well, if you don't wanna smash (helpful Vivazappa!) without a teacher to assist you it would be wise to get a chord book and learn a few more than D, G, A and C. Chords are a good begining as the charts are useful for showing finger positions. There are guitar players out in garage bands that can get by on chords alone and it's a start.
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Discussion in:  Music forum
Participants:  15
Total posts:  17
Initial post:  Apr 16, 2012
Latest post:  Apr 18, 2012

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