Knowing how to play guitar with an instructor can be somehow expensive and frustrating. This is especially if you do not see the progress immediately. For the beginners, the attempts to know how to play become futile as most of them give up after few months. The good news is that this article will provide you with the simplest, effective and most affordable steps that you can be sure will guide you until you know how to play this instrument. Check it out simple steps of learning to play guitar.
Some people have an insatiable curiosity about knowing how to play guitar. There is no doubt you also might be among the curios group if you are interested in this article. Knowing how to play guitar does not only quench your thirst but also gives you more satisfaction you never experienced before in your life. Whether you are looking to answer some questions in a musical way, impress your friends, or just have some cool music at your own private time, guitar does it well. If so then these steps will help, you learn how to play the instrument.
Guitar lessons for beginners
For the people who need to quench their thirst of knowing how to play guitar, the lessons for beginners are as per the steps below:
Part 1: Learning the basics
The most important step for the beginners is to learn the basics of the guitar. The minute you get to master all the basics then it is easier for you to learn the basics of how to play guitar even in the absence of an instructor. The steps below are mandatory for beginners part one.
Identifying the most crucial parts the guitar has
It is difficult to know how to use an instrument when you do not know the parts that are important for the playing. Knowing the name of each part helps to understand their functioning and the contributions they make in order to produce the resonated warm tones associated with guitar. The most important parts of the guitar you are supposed to master are the following:
- Headstock. This is where the strings are attached to the tuning pegs
- Tuning pegs- Pegging attached to the strings. Used for tightening and slackening the strings.
- Bridge. The part that all the other parts the guitar's body is attached to.
- Neck. This refers to the long wooden piece which is flattened on one of the sides, that is the fret board. It is also curved on its other side.
- Sound hole.This refers to the hole from which the guitar's sound resonates
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Holding the guitar correctly
Before you think you have stated to learn, you must know how to hold the guitar correctly. Here are the steps you need follow to hold the guitar correctly.
- Sit on chair that will help your back stay straight.
- Make sure that the guitar is oriented to the player's body, with the small string of them all pointing towards the ground whereas the thick string among them all points upwards as if towards the ceiling.
- The next thing is to take hold of the guitar's back in such a manner that it touches on the chest and stomach while resting on the leg of the hand that you use to strum or pick the guitar.
- Note that you should hold your guitar mostly by the leg as if you are cradling it.
- Creating a V, hold the guitar's neck. This V will be formed by the shape created by your forefinger and thumb. Moving your left hand upwards and downwards on the neck of the guitar without holding it up.
- Sometimes you might experience some discomforts in your neck, shoulders, hands and arms while getting acquainted with playing the guitar. This applies even if you are holding the guitar correctly but do not get discouraged. It disappears when you get used.
Tuning the guitar
Playing a guitar that is not tuned can end up in frustrations as it can keep on producing bad sounds that you do not want. Constant and regular tuning will help you to know the exact fret and string combinations corresponds with certain notes. Here are the steps that will help you in tuning.
- Get to understand the correct names of every string. These strings are arranged in a manner that they range from the least pitched to the highest pitched. The names of the strings are as follows: E, A, D, G, B and E.
- Hold the guitar's tuner then pluck high E. This will tell you whether the guitar is on sharp or flat, which translates to being too high or too low.
- Depending on what you notice after tuning, tighten every note by picking. This will allow you to reach the higher notes or you can decide to slack to make it take it on lower end.
- You do not have to go for the expensive tuner when there are other way through which you can tune the guitar. Consider doing this without by simply matching each note with its corresponding note on a nearby piano.
Fret the strings
This can be achieved through practice. Frets are metal strips running perpendicularly to strings marking every note. Practicing on playing these frets will help you master the sounds they are supposed to produced when you press your fingers on different positions.
Holding the pick
A Plectrum which is the other name for the pick refers to a small plastic piece shaped like a tear.This tool is useful in picking specific notes and general guitar strumming. The steps for better use of a pick are as follows:
- Using the picking hand, create a fist, with the thumb laying flat on top of the curled fingers.
- Grasp the pick perpendicularly making sure it lies between the thumb and your index finger.
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Part 2: How to play the chords
Learning first position of the chords
For the beginners, once you master the basics of a guitar the next step will be learning how to play guitar chords. Two basic guitar chords exist: the first position chords, then the barre chords. The first position chords is played with a combination of open strings as well as pressed strings of the beginning 3 guitar frets.
The common major known chords are the C Major, A Major, G Major, E Major, and D Major. You need to practice the act of switching quickly between shapes. You need to be conversant with the random arrangements of all the chords you need to play then keep switching between them while strumming once in a while. It is important that you keep playing all the appropriate notes if you are to develop successful habits.
Get familiar with appropriate finger placement of the chords
The appropriate finger placement for the beginner guitar chords are shown below:
- C-chord: The C-chord entails placing the ring finger onto the third fret and on the fifth string. This then to be followed by putting the middle finger on top the second fret of string number four. Then place your index finger on fret number one of string number two. Except for the sixth string, make sure that you strum all the other strings all at once and then start playing each of the individual strings at the same time playing on the chord.
- A major: Put the index, ring and middle fingers on frets number 2 of string number 2, 3 and 4 of your guitar. It is a single line down the 3 strings. Play all the string except for the top most one.
- G chord: Place your middle finger on the third fret of the sixth string, index finger on fret 2 of the fifth string, and your ring finger on the third fret of the first string. Make sure each string rings out clearly.
- E Major: The E major is the simplest to play. All you have to do is to place your middle and ring fingers on frets two of the strings 4 and 5. Let the index finger be on fret one of string 3.
- D Major: Here the index finger will go on fret 2 of string 3 whereas the middle finger goes on fret 2 of string 1. Place the ring finger on fret 3 of string 2. Play all the 4 bottom strings.
- E minor: This chord is played in the same manner as you play the E major only that you will not use your index finger. Place the ring and middle fingers on the frets 2 of the string 2 and 3 which are the thickest.
- A minor: In A minor put the ring and middle fingers on the frets 2 of strings 3 and 4 and then put your index finger on fret 1 of the thinnest string 2. It is like the E major, only that you have moved a string downwards. Just make sure you ignore your top string.
- D minor: This is an exact replication of D Major. Put your middle finger on fret number 2 of string 3 which is the thinnest. Place your index finger on fret 1 then put your ring finger on fret 3 of thin string 2. Play only only the bottom 4 strings.
Get a clean sound from every string in the chord by practicing
Placing all the fingers on fret board, playing through every string of the guitars chords. Notes should ring out properly. If they fail to ring out properly, there is a probability you failing to press as hard as you should or that some of your fingers are failing to cause the string to produce sound.
Strum loosely in a relaxed and easy motion
In your strumming, involve combination of down stokes and upstrokes. Ensure you strike all chords rhythmically and evenly. Your wrist should aid in producing excellent sounds. Work on ensuring that your elbow move as least as they can.
Learn and master the barre chords
These are extremely important when you want to play songs. To play the barre chord, your index finger, the one of the fretting hand with all notes being at single fret. For you to play an F, which represents the barre chord in its first position. You need to bar all the notes on the first fret using your index finger and then play the shape that is basically the E chord by moving a step upwards the neck, using your ring, middle, and pinkie.
After learning these steps, you will become familiar with how to play guitar. It is even possible that with practice, you can be a teacher to others with the desire to learn. All you need is to practice steadily for this is what will improve your skills. Sometimes your fingers might bleak because of pain during the initial stages but do not be discouraged. Practice doing some songs until you perfect your chords.
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Source: Yen Ghana