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Trusted Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 52

I didn't go back and read all fifteen pages, but if the the others are half as good as these last two I going to find the time..


If I don't remember it....It didn't happen

Active Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 12

I haven't read all 15 pages yet - so I hope I don't repeat.

Ask yourself why you want to play the guitar? Will clarify a lot of things for you.

i.e. Do you want to croon a few choons with your mates, girlfriend? Do you
have visions of a late night rock TV airing you? Record albums for sale, etc.

That question will clear a path for you.


You don't have to learn all the music before you make some.

I think a lot of us were playing before the Internet was around, MTV or music
shops full to the brim with every conceivable guitar book imaginable.

If anything, all this information can lead to stagnation, because you don't know what
you are supposed to practise.

Pick a couple of your favourite songs and learn them. You will get more milage out of
a couple of songs than knowing a whole load about 'this and that'. And its more fun
than learning theory out of a book.

Ive got loads to say, but the words are not flowing out of my fingers at the moment -
I will come back!


My Contribution To The Guitar World:

Reputable Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 395

As above, I haven't read all 15 pages, either.

I will "add" a couple of things.

1: Listen to all types of music. The worst thing you can do (which I speak from experience) is to get stuck in one genre. Play lots of different music. The best band I was ever in was four or five people that had different, if not opposing, tastes in music. Be open minded. As Boy George once said (yes, Boy George) how can one be an artist without appriciating all forms of art? A good example of what to do with music is Led Zeppelin. Alot of Jimmy Page's riffs are big band songs. The creativity lies in how you present the music.

2: Read different books on how to play. Never take all your information from the same source.

3: If you think your guitar is loosing it's charecter, change the strings.

Brain-cleansing music for brain-numbing times in a brain dead world

Active Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 8

This thread is awesome. I re-read it from time to time when I lose my inspiration ;-)

From the point of view of a 6 month beginner I cannot stress enough how important has been (at least for me) getting a teacher.

Seriously, my learning speed increased twofold since I started taking classes. For some reason beginners always try the self-taught path first... get a good teacher if you can afford it, it'll be a much better investment than a fancy guitar, trust me on this :-)

Trusted Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 48

just read all 15 pages! wow.


Estimable Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 189

WOW is right .... awesome tips and I loved reading for inspiration when my fingers were too sore to play ... OK I'm 43 and have been playing since last October, when I went crazy one day and bought a cheap guitar on eBay. Real cheap. Had to reglue it a bit and hope it holds together until I can afford another (!) But tell myself that my crappy guitar enables me to play blues with authentic flavour.

Well, I can play almost 20 songs now... to be honest, I've had some formal musical training way back when and still play the piano, which is the only reason I've been able to flout some of the other tips on teachers, etc. OK I'm not a pro musician, and never will be - curse my stubby fingers! - but I play for fun and I do have fun. I look forward to picking up as many good tips as I can (hopefully I can absorb the information) but anyway here is some stuff I find helpful :wink: :

As an adult learner I feel free to only please myself when I play. I'm not thinking about an audience or other musicians. The guitar has been my teacher, the songs reveal themselves one at a time. "Each song is a performance." Being the one-man band and entertaining myself forces me to keep the beat and put some heart into it.

Sometimes the most learning happens when I put the guitar away and do something else. Repeating the same thing more than 3-5 times in a session is counterproductive, I don't get any better. Especially new stuff, brain overload.

I have limited practice time and still building those calluses... I need to just pick up the guitar when I have a minute and play something, I don't have time or motivation to memorize all kinds of scales right now. Or chords. I just need to learn how to play a few riffs and switch some basic chords first, in a manner that amuses me. And any song I learn is potentially with me for the rest of my life! e.g. how could I ever NOT want to play 'Friend of the Devil', no matter how good I get (this song is an awesome finger warmup) ?

I don't know how to play a single barre chord (but there's always F6!) - yet. Hence the fingerstyle. It just seems more natural to put both hands to work, gives me more to do with one chord and the good news is - once you have the chord in place, any string is the 'right' string. And if it's the one right string you happen to hit while flubbing the chord change - ?? Exactly!

I love playing songs - from memory - what a fantastic breakthrough! Easy Songs for Beginners column has been my inspiration, but I had to mix it up to suit my finger size (and relative delicacy). The #1 thing in memorizing a chord progression is to break it down to numbers, starting with the root chord as I, and write it down separately, along with the actual progression. Writing it out as a number sequences helps me (my unconscious anyway) to recognize and remember the pattern. I also try to recognize how the different changes affect the tone and mood of the song, just to help jog the old brain cells when the time comes to play ... :D

What if the Hokey Pokey IS what it's really all about?

~ why yes, I am available on youtube ~

Honorable Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 539

I have a new one (found out personally) for the "what I have learned" theme going here....

Switching from Super Slinky 8's to Power Slinky 11's HURTS!

Serisouly, after switching over my strings, I can barely get through one barre-chord heavy song without my hand feeling like its going to drop off! (Reminds me of 3 years ago when I started :lol:)

I see it as a good thing though, now that I have to really concentrate and play harder, it's going to improve my finger strength, stamina and hopefully my technique as well (can't be as sloppy with thicker strings, its harder to cover up mistakes with the tone and general louder sound).

The learning process continues........


ETD - Formerly "10141748 - Reincarnate"

Famed Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 2736

I have learnt through various painful experiences, to never fiddle with the guitar, unless and until one has the right tools for it.

Eg. Its no use adjusting the truss rod, if you don't have feeler gauge and the right type of wrench. Moreover, small screwdrivers are also important for making other adjustments.

However, the biggest lesson I ever learnt is PATIENCE.

With patience, everything else comes. (without resorting the need to break and destroy guitars... :cry: )

Trusted Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 62

I don't know if any of the things I learned helps, or is said but...

1) Learn everything properly from a tutor or such, even two lessons could change a lot in posture.

2) Practice all types of music, for when I practice finger style and go back picking, I'm faster and more refreshed and such.
It also helps to play all types of music to not get bored, or play the same song over and over again to get it right.

3) Take the time to study the guitar as well as playing it.

4) Take breaks if you need them, don't try to force practice.

5) And most importantly, perservere and have fun! :P

Yeah I've only been actively playing for around 6-7 months but I can play most intermediate song on the main page =x

It still amazes me how playing an instrument can be so fun 8)

Eminent Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 19

If you're taking lessons - record them. Early on I was having problems remembering exactly how certain passages were played. It was easy during the lesson but once I got home I was
tough to remember. And as the wek went along it was even tougher to remember.
Now I tape all my lessons and it's like having extra lessons throughout the week.
It's helped my progress immensely.

Leadership is based on inspiration, not domination; on cooperation, not intimidation.

-- William Arthur Wood

Estimable Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 103

What ive learned: as a newbie...
The frets arnt the open spaces, but the bars.

Honorable Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 417

if you like a song, learn it.
dont get freaked out by the new chords and tabs, learn it!
ever song that challanges you as a player is good, if you learn a song in an hour, learn harder songs.
it gives you a lot of knowledge to take away and often new chords and ideas to write your own stuff.

Honorable Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 502

Following on from what I think Rahul said earlier on this page, sometimes you can play a harder piece better than an easier one because you have to concentrate. I certainly find if I'm thinking NOT ONLY about where I'm going to go in half a bars time, but ALSO exactly what I'm doing at that point in time. Now this is incredibly tricky sometimes, but concentration really does make a difference.

However, a partial unfortunate truth that I've learnt recently is that; that special something that some people are always looking for is probably... emotion. All the gear and theory in the world can't replace a bit of emotion whilst playing.

I thought that the pros always used to put it on when they pulled those straining faces or strenuous grins, but I found myself yesterday doing the same thing without even noticing it! It's quite strange! :D

I think it's going to be a goooood summer. :)

"Today is what it means to be young..."

(Radiohead, RHCP, Jimi Hendrix - the big 3)

Illustrious Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 10264

Everytime I think about how much I've learned, and start feeling all smug and self-congratulatory, I realise how much there still is to learn - then I feel like a beginner again. There's ALWAYS something new to learn!

:D :D :D


"Sometimes the beauty of music can help us all find strength to deal with all the curves life can throw us." (D. Hodge.)

Estimable Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 189

“Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts.” – Former president Calvin Coolidge

Thanks again for that great quote.. I am still an egg, going on 300 days now, but all the other learners I've talked to said the SAME THING... try to practice EVERY DAY ... even if only for 15 min. When you are a beginner, you will notice those missing days! Everything else will come with time, just don't miss days. You can find 15 min somewhere!

I love that quote too I saw somewhere on GN (in the section for more advanced players) about a song requiring at least 5 years to really learn. Puts things in perspective on my "bad" days :lol:

What if the Hokey Pokey IS what it's really all about?

~ why yes, I am available on youtube ~

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