If you wish to learn guitar, then you are taking on the task of learning how to play one of the most popular musical instruments. Whether you plan to write your own music, start a band, or just be able to play in your own spare time, it is a noteworthy achievement. Consider the following advice about knowing what to do when you choose to learn the guitar.
Listen to music. One of the best ways to learn anything is to watch a professional at work. Listen to music and really try to single out the guitar playing. Determine how they’re playing and pay close attention to their technique. You can learn a lot just from listening and watching others play.
Discover ways to keep yourself motivated. Creating both short and long-term goals can help you keep playing guitar. Find someone else who is interested in learning, and the two of you can practice together. Give yourself a reward every week or so if you’ve done your practicing each day. Keep in mind that anything worth doing takes work.
Playing the guitar is notoriously hard on the fingers. You may experience cramping or blisters, particularly if you play for long periods of time in the beginning. While it may sound silly, it is important to “work out” your fingers to strengthen them. You will notice a world of difference!
Find a good balance between learning music theory and physically playing the guitar. Music theory is important to learn. If you’re serious about playing the guitar, it’s crucial to study the technical side of it. Just don’t forget to apply all you’ve learned. Try to strike a nice balance between the two.
If you are a beginning guitar player, be sure to learn the different types of strums. Start strumming slowly, with a simple up-and-down strum, and once you have that down, you can move on to more difficult strum patterns. Learn the basics, such as country rhythms, and rock rhythms. You can learn many types of music with these simple strums.
Even if you only aspire to be a casual musician, only playing guitar as a hobby in front of friends and family, take the time necessary to learn a bit of music theory. If you have a thorough grounding in how music really works, you will be a far better player and will be able to expand your horizons as an artist down the road, should you so desire.
To avoid the pain involved in learning to play the guitar, your fingers will get callused. Avoid picking at your calluses. If you have rough skin or snags that you need to get rid of, use an emery board to smooth your skin. You can soak callused fingers in rubbing alcohol but avoid using hazardous materials to toughen the skin.
If you want to play the guitar well, you have to practice everyday. This is how you strengthen your fingers and train your ears. The more you practice, the more your finger muscles will get used to the chords. Your brain will remember what your fingers should do, and it will become more natural.
A great way to evaluate you progress is to record and videotape yourself playing guitar. Listening, and watching, yourself while you aren’t concentrating on playing will give you a better perspective on how you are doing. Use your recordings to see how you can improve your sound, finger positions and techniques.
Get a chart of chord fingering and use it during your practice. The chart serves as a reference tool for you to remind you how to play certain chords. Guitar books are good, but it is much more convenient to use a chart than to flip open a book when you are practicing.
Learn the different key signatures. In each key signature, there is a basic chord progression that you can learn. When you get familiar with these, you can improvise the accompaniment of many popular songs. This is one good way to start playing some real music and learn at the same time.
When you learn your first chords, the fingering will feel awkward to you. You will develop callous on your fingers that may not feel comfortable during the first days. However, do not be discouraged. Your fingers will toughen and get used to pressing down on the strings, and your playing will become easier over time.
To keep from getting frustrated when you start out with the guitar, start with the basics. Rather than jumping right into chords and scales, learn the basic parts of the guitar, such as the nut, the fret and the bridge. Learning your instrument gives you a better foundation for knowing how to play.
After having read these tips about learning to play the guitar, you’re probably itching to play something right? Well, it’s time, and with the right assistance and dedication, you will be playing all kinds of things in no time. So get started today, and find out how rewarding of a hobby the guitar can be.