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If you don’t have a library card and want to learn to play guitar?

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4 Responses to “If you don’t have a library card and want to learn to play guitar?”

  1. Viv said :

    Go to:
    An online way to learn how to play the guitar.

  2. murrayc said :

    many high schools have Adult evening courses on guitar

  3. mliz55 said :

    try expert videos, or youtube also, they have on line courses.
    or try barnes and noble, they often have dvd and book kits, on sale. that might be a good way to go, since the best way to learn is to practice about 6 times as much as you think you might need.

  4. John R said :

    Maybe these simple suggestions will help.

    You can learn from books or take classes. If you follow this approach, you’ll hear about standards and learn how to read music. But if you just want to play guitar quick and easy, here’s a list of things to do. Assuming you’ve never played an instrument – here’s what I’d suggest.

    1) Look at a piano. I know you’re learning guitar – but it’s easier to visualize on a piano. All instruments have 12 notes (regardless of the instrument). Let’s learn these first.

    2) Look at the white & black keys on the piano. Do you see a pattern? Count the white keys between the patterns. You’ll find 7 white keys. These seven keys (which get repeated for each higher or lower “pattern” also called, “octave”) are seven notes from C, D, E, F, G, A & B (the pattern generally starts with C). After G, the notes start over again with “A” in a new “pattern” or “octave”.

    3) Now look at the black keys. There are 5 of those in between each pattern/octave. These are called sharps (or flats depending on your perspective). C#, D#, F#, G#, A# (also known as Db, Eb, Gb, Ab, Bb). The “#” is pronounced “sharp” and simply means 1 black key higher than a white key where the “b” is pronounced “flat” and simply means 1 black key lower than a white key. The guitar has the same concept of notes, flats & sharps.

    4) Notice there is no E# nor B# – that is, an E# is an F. And a B# is a C. If you don’t know why – look again at the pattern of white and black keys on the piano again. The pattern explains the reason.

    5) Now let’s look at a guitar. The metal bars running perpendicular to the neck are called frets. The same 12 key pattern (with 12 notes of 7 + 5 sharps/flats) are found between the frets.

    6) Pick up the guitar. Start on any string and play that string open (which means pluck the string but do not press any frets). Hear that sound?

    7) On the same string press between the first fret and the bridge of the guitar (way way up at the top of the neck) and pluck the same string again. Did you hear that sound? Follow that pattern for 12 notes. Notice on the 13th note that this note sounds just like the open or 1st note you played, only an octave higher.

    8) So now you know there are 12 notes in each octave (the 13th note represents the same as the 1st note only an octave higher in pitch). 7 + 5 sharps = 12 notes. And you sort of know how to play each of these notes on the same string.

    9) The next important step is identifying those notes. Let’s start with the bottom string on your guitar (the thinnest string). This string is called, “E” because when tuned properly, the open note or 1st note on that string is in the tune of E. Play the E on your guitar (open), then the E# (which is again accomplished by pressing BETWEEN the first fret and the bridge on the same string and plucking the string). Play all 12 notes E, F, F#, G, G#, A, A#, B, C, C#, D & D#. Find the 13th note – play it and compare it to the 1st or open note. Do they sound the same? Answer – yes. They are both an “E”.

    10) There are 5 other strings on your guitar (assuming you play a standard 6-string). From bottom (smallest) to top (fattest), these strings are E, B, G, D, A & E. Play each of the notes on each string. For example, on the 5th string A, play A (open), A# (1st fret), B (2nd fret), C (3rd fret), C# (4th fret), etc. Play all 12 notes on each string. Notice and compare again the 13th note to the first note – they should always sound the same, only an octave higher.

    11) So now you know roughly what each note is on each string. With practice you’ll know when, where & why to play each note. For the next steps, you will also need to know how to properly tune the guitar. I’ll assume you can figure that out on the internet or get someone to help you. From here, there are many different ways to go. I’m going to walk you through Chords next.

    12) A chord (pronounced, “cord”) is simply a collection of notes together. To simplify your life, think of Major chords as 3 notes played together at the same time, which when played together make a happy sound. Think of Minor chords as 3 notes played together at the same time, which when played together make a sad sound. Back to the piano, find the middle “C” key. This is the key in the middle of the piano – to it’s left is another white key, to it’s right is a black key. Now play the C, E & G keys together at the same time. Did you hear that? Pleasant isn’t it? That is called a C-chord. Now, find the E on the piano. Now play the E, F# & A (remember the F# is a black key). This is called an E-chord. Each Major chord on a piano or a guitar is made up of 3 notes which when played together sound happy. Here are the 7 Major chords:
    C-chord : C, E & G.
    D-chord : D, F# & A.
    E-chord : E, G# & B
    F-chord : F, A & C
    G-chord : G, B & D
    A-chord : A, C# & E
    B-chord : B, D# & F#
    You’ll notice I didn’t list the Sharps/Flats, Minors, 7ths Diminished, 9ths, sustains, major-7ths and a whole range of fancy jazz chords. Let’s stick to the basics for now. Major chords.

    13) Now let’s try our first chord on the guitar. This I think is the most fundamental of all chords on the guitar – it’s called the E-chord. From the list above you can see the E-chord consists of E, G# & B. On the guitar, we are going to accomplish this by playing all 6 strings at the same time in one- long strum and by playing these notes: 1st-string E, 2nd-string B, 3rd-string G#, 4th-string E, 5th-string B & 6th-string E. Here is how to play this on your guitar:

    E|———–|————|————| < --- Bottom (little E) string B|-----------|------------|------------| G|----1-----|------------|------------| D|-----------|------2----|------------| A|-----------|------3----|------------| E|-----------|------------|------------| <--- Top (fat E) string On this chart, the "1" is your pointy finger. The "2" is your birdy finger and the "3" is your ring finger. You can also switch 2 & 3 around if it's more comfortable for you. Practice putting your hands in these positions represented above and strum. At first it may not sound right - you'll have to play with various combinations of pressure and timing on the fret board to make it sound right. Your fingers will become raw & tired from this - your first time. It's OK - don't give up. You need to develop a hard callous on your fingertips to play well anyway. This is your first E-chord! 14) Now let's play another fundamental chord. The A-chord. From the chart above, we know the A-chord consists of A, C# & E. We are going to accomplish this on the guitar by playing all 6 strings at the same time in one- long strum and by playing these notes: 1st-string E, 2nd-string C#, 3rd-string A, 4th-string E, 5th-string A & 6th-string E. It looks like this: E|-----------|------------|------------| <--- Bottom (little E) string B|-----------|------1----|------------| G|-----------|------2----|------------| D|-----------|------3----|------------| A|-----------|------------|------------| E|-----------|------------|------------| <--- Top (fat E) string Some people leave off the 6th string E and use different fingers for the strings - play around and find what is comfortable for you. Just press the right frets and you've got it. 15) So now you can play an A & an E. Practice switching between these two chords quickly & easily while strumming. Practice your strum timing - play with a beat track if possible or metronome. 16) There are many many other chords you can learn. Find them here :

    17) I’m now going to teach you the QUICK & EASY way to play any song in the world. It’s called, “Bar Chords” With this technique, you can play just about any song you want (except fancy jazz chords). Bar chords are nothing more than the 2-chords you’ve already learned (E & A) but played on different frets. Remember how I told you “1” in the charts above was your pointy finger? Well, with bar-chords you will be using your pointy finger to “clamp” over a fret which leaves only 3 other fingers to play the notes required. So for the E & A chords you’ve just learned, practice these again but DO NOT use your pointy finger – use instead your birdy, ring & pinky fingers to play these chords. When you’ve mastered that move to the next step.

    18) Now that you’ve mastered A & E with 3-fingers (birdy, ring & pinky), you’ve freed your pointy finger to act as a CLAMP over a fret. This is the secret to Bar Chords. Example. Play an E-chord. Now, move all fingers up 1 fret and CLAMP your pointy just slightly behind & not quite on the first fret (this means press all 6 strings down with your pointy finger, like a CLAMP and use your other 3 fingers to make the form of the E-chord). If you can master that chord, you’re now playing a bar-chord F. Move up another fret, again using the same finger positions as the E but pointy-finger-CLAMP on the 2nd fret, now you’re playing an F#. Got it? Go up and down the fret board with the E-based Bar-Chord. Play the E, F, F#, G, G# chords. Got it?

    19) You can play alot of songs this way – but it’s helpful to also learn the A-bar-chords as well. So, once again, play an A-chord. Tip : you can play an A-chord with 1-finger. Trust me on this. Use your ring-finger to press the appropriate frets for the A-chord (you were using 3 fingers to play an A, now you’re using only your ring finger to accomplish the same chord). Use only your ring finger. You can do it. You need to master this for A-bar-chords. OK, now that you’ve figured that out, move up 1 fret and CLAMP with your pointy finger on the first fret and use your ring-finger to play the obligatory A-chord (only 1-fret up). Now you’re playing an A# using the A-chord structure! Go up and down the fret board playing the A, A#, B, C, C#, etc. Got it? You’re now playing the A-bar-chord.

    20) With the A & E bar-chord techniques you can play almost any song. You need to practice strumming to the rhythm and switching at the appropriate time. It will also help you to learn 7th’s and Minor chords as well. You can bar-chord these also and with this combination – any song is in your grasp.

    21) If you want to see pictures of bar-chords, go here.

    22) Send me an email with questions :

    Have fun.


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