So yeah...

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So yeah...

Post by R 3 on Mon Aug 31, 2009 2:54 pm

Sup, i'm R 3 / Reload...some of you may know me from C4F.

Don't play an instrument yet, but planning on buying a guitar soon and trying to teach myself how to play.

Anyway that's about it.

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Re: So yeah...

Post by spearlymatt on Mon Aug 31, 2009 4:50 pm

If you really want to learn to play, I'd recommend getting lessons.

Teaching yourself is much harder, takes much longer, and be much more frustrating.

But on the upside, it forces you to think more and learn things that you might not have with a teacher.

I taught myself, do I regret it? Not really, I'm happy where I am, and I'm happy with my knowledge. But guitar (or any instrument for that matter) can be a hard thing to stick with, and lessons will make it that much easier.
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Re: So yeah...

Post by R 3 on Mon Aug 31, 2009 4:53 pm

I played a few years ago for a while and got lessons, imo it was bullshit...I spent about 5 weeks doing the same part of a song, same chords etc. and I had to pay for it, I think it would be much more satisfying to teach myself.

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Re: So yeah...

Post by spearlymatt on Mon Aug 31, 2009 9:41 pm

Well you have to get someone who has a good priority list, which, I'm not sure if they exist, as I never took lessons.
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Re: So yeah...

Post by MoleMania on Thu Sep 03, 2009 7:50 am

sup R3 Very Happy

I started with bass guitar from a teacher, so I'm not sure what beginner electric guitar lessons are like really. But a good teacher should push you to practise and nail certain parts and licks at points. My electric teacher right now teaches me really tough stuff, but once I've learnt it I only then move on to the next part (usually a week later, once I get my next lesson, so I have a fair amount of time to nail the part).

And that's the thing, if I don't nail a certain part in that time It's either:

1) too hard and I need more time. (unlikely, a good teacher gives you hardish stuff but not impossible stuff) For a beginner you usually get a lot more time to learn stuff so this may not be a problem.
2) I haven't put in the time and patience to learn it (fairly common in my experience). The bad thing about this is that if you're paying for lessons you aren't at all making the most of your money or helping your progress obviously. If you can't play the song in the required time (Yes the pressure does help me get motivated to learn) you usually spend the next lesson recapping over it - and there's your money wasted on a lesson you might not have needed if you put the practise time in.
3). The teacher couldn't give a damn, and makes you move on regardless of your progress or skill. This is a bad teacher, my bass teacher was like this all the time and I was relieved at how much better my electric teacher is than him.

As you can see by answer 2, a lot of the progress comes from YOU, not you relying on the teacher. This isn't to say that you should kick yourself every time you can't do something in time, but to get the most out of your practises before the next lesson. Even if you haven't nailed it by then, a good teacher should help you keep going, not punish you for failing. The positive attitude is great for learning and teaching guitar.

Now, as for starting out you should always try and learn something that you like and is fairly easy. This is why Smoke on the water is a common favourite, it's easy, fun to play and listen to and it gets you going on guitar without too much pain. Other songs like Oasis' Wonderwall are also good. As long as it isn't boring mindless chords in no context then you should enjoy guitar a whole lot more. Try and encourage the teacher to help you learn your fave easy tunes instead of boring scales. It worked for me! after nagging my bass dude to teach us American Idiot by Green Day things got way more interesting.

Once you've learnt a whole selection of easy songs to practise, THEN you move onto scales and chords. I can't help you much here, as my teachers never really tought me and fully explained chords and scales to me - they just through me a tab of the C major scale and left it at that. NOT AT ALL HELPFUL FOR ANYONE. I didn't even know what the hell it was! Just to be a bit helpfull I'll try and explain it:


Scales, essentially they are the building blocks of any music playing. Scales are a selection of different notes (usually 5, 6, 7, or 8 ) that are used to give music a certain feel. For example, a major scale makes music seem happy, and a minor scale makes music seem more sad. You can use these notes to create riffs, chords and anything that sounds good. Try playing the notes in different orders and different times - experimenting is always good for a beginner!

You may be confused as to why I'm babbling on about scales without telling you any, so I'll name some that most guitarists will use.
Minor Pentatonic scale (note the 'pent' in the name, this means that there's 5 notes in this scale - good for starting out.)
Major Pentatonic scale (again, with 5 notes. This one sound happier than the minor pent scale)
Minor scale (More notes in this scale, and sounds sadder than the pentatonic minor)
Major scale (More notes in this scale, and sounds happier than the pentatonic major)

I seriously cannot be bothered to find tabs or tell you notes in these scales, that's what a teacher is for! I hope I roughly explained therm correctly, Matt can correct me if I've made some mistakes somewhere along the line. Very Happy

The very basics I cannot really help you on, like how to pick/strum a note/notes, or how to fret with the correct technique, or the anatomy of a guitar because Bass is different and I figured my own of picking later ( But for the other reasons I simply cannot be bothered to explain). But hopefully this whole post should give you some guidelines on teacher, learning attitude and what to learn etc.

But as a No.1 rule, always keep guitar playing fun, or you'll lose interest.
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Re: So yeah...

Post by spearlymatt on Thu Sep 03, 2009 4:45 pm

Wow Mole, I can't be bothered to read all of it right now, I'm really busy, but from skimming it, that's some good info. The only thing that seems to be missing is an explanation of chords, but that's simple.

Extremely simple version: Take the first, third, and fifth note of your major scale. Play them all at once, that's a major chord in whatever key the scale is in. Same goes for a minor scale, you'd just get a minor chord.

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Re: So yeah...

Post by MoleMania on Fri Sep 04, 2009 7:50 am

Lol thanks, My teachers NEVER explained the basics of chords so I was a bit stuck on the theory behind them. Cheers for the rep! Very Happy
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Re: So yeah...

Post by spearlymatt on Sat Sep 05, 2009 12:57 am

Ok, well I might post an article or something. But it is basically the 1st, 3rd, and 5th note of a scale. Until you get into diminished, and sevenths, and major sevenths, and minor sevenths, and flattened fifths, and etc. etc. Wink
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