Teach Yourself Guitar and Strum Your Way to Success
So you want to learn the guitar? That’s indeed great! Like many other aspiring guitarists nowadays, I’m pretty sure the next thing that you are thinking about is how to realize that dream. Finding an amazing guitar teacher or a private guitar tutor is quite difficult, and not to mention, a bit too expensive for most people. Though it’s reasonable to spend thousands of dollars if your aim is to be a professional guitar player, learning the guitar for your own personal leisure and as a hobby is just plain insensible and impractical.
If you want a more relaxed, practical, yet more or less the same as those expensive lessons, I highly recommend that you teach yourself guitar. If you have the will and the determination, you can be your very own guitar teacher. Plus with all those resources and available online lessons on the internet, this is really a big possibility.
Becoming Your Very Own Guitar Teacher
You don’t need to be musically trained, or need to have a background in musical theory to be your own guitar teacher. What you need is the ability to assess yourself and be able to tell if you are doing the right thing or not. In other words, aside from becoming your very own teacher, you will be your own self-critique.
There is no amount of practice that will benefit those who are practicing bad performance habits, so as your own teacher, you have to immediately realize that you are doing something that needs corrections. It may be quite tricky, but with consistency, things will be easier and everything will just fall right into place.
Like any other student-teacher relationship, you are going to need materials that will help you achieve your goals. There are quite a lot of options for these materials or medium that you can choose so that you can start your guitar journey. These come in the form of online guitar courses, a guitar lesson DVD, a Guitar manual and among others. In my experience, I would highly recommend an online video guitar course that can be easily accessed anywhere with an internet connection. You are really lucky nowadays that the internet is here. Back in the old times, people like myself had to rely on those boring guitar manuals and handbooks.
With your materials, you can take your course right in the comfort of your very home and if you feel that it is becoming overwhelming, you can always take a break or two before going back to the course again. You don’t get to enjoy this privilege if you are with a guitar instructor or if you are in a music class.
The Second Opinion
It’s always good if not best, to ask another person about how you are doing. Just be open to whatever the other person has got to say whether it is good or bad, and treat those as constructive criticisms that will help you improve your performance.
It’s really great to be your own guitar teacher. So if getting those lessons are too expensive for you, consider becoming your own instructor and enjoy the privileges.
How to Tune Guitar ?
If you are already an “armed-and-ready” person who always has a guitar tuner or a pitch pipe handy, then you won’t probably won’t be all that interested with what I’m about to share to you. It sucks big time if your guitar is out of tune and you don’t have any idea on how to fix it, especially if you’ve got an impromptu performance in front of your friends. You really don’t want to embarrass yourself in front of your friends with an out of tune guitar, right? So, I’m going to show you an easy fix for situations like these.
Let me set your expectations ahead of time: tuning your guitar is quite tricky, especially if you aren’t all that used to it yet. But with practice and repetition, you’ll effortlessly tune your guitar in no time at all.
Knowing what a perfectly tuned guitar sounds like, is the very first crucial step. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to discern whether your guitar is out of tune or not – your ears will be the one to help you. Just follow the simple rule: if it sounds awful, then it probably is out of tune, granting that you are doing your chords correctly of course.
Tune by ear.
Tuning your guitar without any tuning paraphernalia is indeed possible. Let me share this video below:
To put it in context,
i) Pluck the 6th (E) string on the 5th fret, and then play the open 5th string. Tune the 5th string until it sounds like the 6th string
ii) Play the 5th (A) string on the 5th fret and then play the open 4th string. Tune the 4th string until sounds like the 5th string
iii) Play the 4th (D) on the 5th fret, and then play the open 3rd string. Tune the 3rd string until it sounds like the 4th string.
iv) Play the 3rd (G) string on the 4th fret, and then play the open 2nd string. Tune until the 2nd string sounds like the 3rd string.
v) Play the 2nd (B) string on the 5th fret, and then play the open 1st string. Tune until the 1st string sounds like the 2nd string
If all the strings of your guitar are out of tune, then it’s pretty much going to be impossible to get it in tune using the method above. However, what happens most of the time is that there are only one or two strings that need fixing. This is when you can do the above steps to determine which string or strings are out of tune, then fix and tune as necessary.
Remember, it doesn’t necessarily have to be perfectly standard. Your main goal here is to make sure that the strings are in tune with each other. You’ll end up frustrated if you strive to have your guitar always “perfectly” tuned. Just make sure they are in tune, and focus on practicing your guitar chords.
Tuning your guitar the first time can really take a long time, but just be patient and in time, you can easily tune a guitar in no time. You become better when you learn how to tune your guitar. You can even purposely make your guitar out of tune, and then try to fix it again. Word of caution: don’t overdo it though.
10 Secrets on Guitar Tuning that Every Guitarist Should Know
Who hasn’t had any difficulties tuning a guitar as a beginner? I guess the answer is none.
I’m quite positive that almost everyone had a hard time when they were first learning how to tune their guitars. Tuning your guitar is one of the most important aspects of the guitar learning process that you shouldn’t miss. You might not know this, but practicing on a badly tuned guitar does not only sound awful to the ears, but it will delay the learning process too.
I understand what you are going through right now as I also took the same path while I was still learning. In my journey, I have learned a lot of things about the guitar and since we are talking about tuning a guitar, I will be sharing the tips and secrets to help you to tune a guitar better.
- Tune your guitar every time you get to hold it. You’ll be surprised how easy it is for a guitar to go out of tune. Tuning your guitar each time will definitely make you better too
- Take care of your guitar. Don’t leave it in extremely hot or cold areas because it can cause your guitar to go out of tune. Avoid dropping or bumping your guitar as well. If you carry it around, make sure it is in its protective case.
- Invest in a quality tuner if you perform in noisy environments. You don’t really need to break the bank to buy a good one. You can start with a tuning fork or an inexpensive guitar tuner that you can bring with you on gigs.
- However, it is much better if you can practice tuning by ear – this will make you a better musician in the long run. You can use the tuner to tune the Low E string and you can then tune the rest of the strings by ear.
- Learn how to properly attach the strings to the head. If the strings aren’t really correctly attached, those strings will just easily go out of tune while you are playing.
- TuneUP! This is really a must. You must always start lower than the desired note and then slowly tighten the string until you reach the correct pitch. This will help prevent the string from going flat when you are already playing which tends to happen if you “tune DOWN”. If the faulty string is higher than the desired note, loosen the string and then tune it back up till you reach the desired note.
- Do a couple of “bends” and then tune the string. This is really helpful especially if you have new strings in your guitar. If you don’t know what bends are, check out this video:
- You don’t really have to be an expert in order to do bends.
- Always double check the “faulty” string before tuning it. Check it with both adjacent strings to really confirm or verify which string is out of tune. Sometimes, the suspected string may not even be the faulty one. So, don’t forget to double check.
- Play a chord that you know very well. If it sounds a bit odd, or off, then chances are, the guitar is out of tune. You’ve really got to trust your ear.
- Don’t forget to “stretch” your strings. This applies to newly replaced strings on your guitar. You have to tug on the string and stretch it, and then start tuning it. You don’t have to pull too hard, a few firm tugs will do.
- Be consistent with your practice. If it’s really too hard for you, don’t lose heart. Just continue practicing until you get it right. Everyone has had difficulties tuning their guitars in the beginning, so it’s not only you.
How to Play Guitar Chords ?
Hey, there aspiring guitarists! I’m pretty sure you’re all really excited to learn the guitar and play your favorite songs in the soonest time possible, so let me help you with that.
To effectively learn how to play the guitar, you must plan everything ahead of time so that you won’t waste time and effort on doing something that will not help you speed up the process. So let’s start!
Learning the guitar is like constructing a building – first, you need to build a strong foundation so that your building will stand tall and firm. In learning the guitar, you need to have a strong foundation too – and that is basically learning how to play guitar chords. Your whole guitar playing scene will somewhat be dependent on your knowledge and mastery of guitar chords. So for starters, you have to do well in learning how to play guitar chords to have a better future with your guitar journey.
The Basic Chords
As a beginner, you are lucky that these basic chords are really simple to pull off with a little practice and dedication. Once you have learned even three of those basic chords, you’ll be amazed at the possibilities that you can do because you can already play tons of songs with those. The famous beginner’s song “Wild Thing” by the Troggs can be done with only the basic A Major, D Major, and the E Major chords and there are lots more. These basic chords will really take you a long way.
Try practicing three chords at a time. Once you have mastered those, try to look for a song that you can apply what you have learned. Alternatively, you can look for a song first which uses only basic chords, practice those chords, and then apply those in the song.
There is no magic trick in learning these basic chords – you just simply have to work your fingers off and practice them over and over again, until you can finally form and transition from one chord to another until it becomes natural to you. The keywords here are consistent practice – that is the secret.
Now that you know that you need to learn how to play guitar chords first, the next thing that you need to consider is to know how to do it. Perhaps the most obvious and easiest way to do it is through the internet. Personally, I would highly recommend those very useful instructional videos that you can easily find over the internet and some are even easily accessed in YouTube like these videos below:
Another thing that you ought to have is a guitar chord chart. There are lots of downloadable chord charts in PDF forms that you can get for free. This will then be your ultimate guide for your whole guitar endeavor.
So putting it all together, learn the very basic guitar chords first using a method that you like best (I personally recommend online videos) and lastly, don’t forget to consistently practice. I’m pretty sure you’ll find challenges and difficulties along the way, but like I said in my previous posts: treat them as “friends” so you can easily overtake them. I can still clearly remember when I was able to pull off my first beginner song, Wild Thing by the Troggs, the feeling is just extremely overwhelming and gratifying. You’ll be able to feel that once you have mastered your basic chords and applied it in a song – soon.
Learn Guitar Online: Get the Edge!
Do you still need convincing on whether to choose online guitar lessons over hiring a personal guitar tutor or enrolling in a music school? Well then, let me give you an eye-opener and illustrate the advantages that you are going to get if you favor modernization and the internet. Then you can decide if it’s indeed worth the time and effort.
Reason #1: Enjoy learning at your own pace.
You are your own boss if you get online guitar lessons. You don’t have to struggle with your instructor’s pace, or try and keep up with your class. The great thing about this is that it conforms to the uniqueness of each individual. No two people learn the same things at the same time. There are those who easily learn basic guitar chords after a few minutes, while there are those who will really struggle with it the whole day. With online guitar lessons, you get to learn at your own comfortable pace.
Reason #2: Choose your own music style.
If you are in a class, of course, you can’t just easily choose the style of music that you would like to learn. Most of the time, you are given the modules of learning how to play the guitar and teach you the chords needed to learn to play their “dictated” songs. With online lessons, you can choose your kind of music right from the very start.
Reason #3: Multifarious lessons
It would be immensely boring to go over the same module or book and repeating the same lessons over and over again, agree? But with online lessons, the whole internet is your module! Just think of the various guitar websites and the programs that they offer – the list just goes on and on. This will keep your lessons at a variety so that you won’t easily get bored and lose motivation.
Reason #4: Learn anywhere, anytime.
Are you a night owl, or an early bird? With online guitar lessons, it doesn’t really matter. The internet is open twenty-four hours per day, seven days a week including holidays – so it’s up to you to decide when you want to take your lessons, or when not to. This is one of the best advantages that you can get with it. If you are not in the right mindset, or if you are rather too tired, you can definitely postpone your lessons for now, and get back to it once you are up and ready. Plus, you no longer have to walk or drive just to get your lessons because you can get this right at your very home. What more could you ask for?
Reason #5: Visualization is easy
The good thing about online video guitar lessons is that you have the power to rewind, pause, and even skip the parts that you have already mastered. You don’t get that kind of power when you are with your instructor because if you ask him to repeat some steps over and over again, he might get infuriated. I’m not bad-mouthing guitar instructors here; I’m just saying that this is a reality that you must accept. With guitar lessons, you can just go over the parts that you were having some difficulties with until you get it right – plain and simple.
So, what do you think of online guitar lessons? Did I convince you? If you still feel it deep inside that you ought to get a private guitar instructor or enroll in guitar lessons, then, by all means, do so. Bottom line is, you have to choose the best method that you feel most comfortable with.