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Long Haired Man Playing a Guitar
Long Haired Man Playing a Guitar

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Beightol, David
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How To Play Guitar Like a Pro! by John Bilderbeck

"Having taught the guitar for many years, I see the majority of beginners experiencing the same problems and making the same mistakes over and over again in their quest to learn how to play guitar. It's my job to steer them through these problem areas."

These "mistakes" are basic errors that most beginners naturally tend to make. But these mistakes can cause major problems if you allow them to become habits in your playing. Unfortunately, 90% of guitarists have done just that!

Avoid These 3 Mistakes Like The plague

The three main mistakes MOST people make when learning how to play guitar are:

1: Trying to play too fast too soon.

Don't be in such a rush. Trying to go too fast too soon causes serious problems. Sloppy playing and mistakes will become your trademark.

Learn to practice slowly and perfectly. The reason for this, is, what you program your brain and fingers with while practicing, is what you'll get as a habitual and subconscious end result.

The GIGO computer term describes it best. Garbage In = Garbage Out. If you program a computer with faulty data, your results will be faulty too. It's exactly the same with learning how to play guitar.

So practice everything very slowly and perfectly. Do this, and your playing will be to a higher standard than 90% of all other guitarists. Yes - even those that have been playing for years!

2: Too much body and hand tension.

Have you ever noticed how the top professionals make it all look so easy and effortless? How relaxed they are?

Take a lesson from that.

When learning how to play guitar, and in all practice sessions, you need to be as relaxed as possible at all times.

Unnecessary tension anywhere in the body when playing will stop you like a brick wall. Any "excess" tension in your fingers, hands, arms, elbows, wrists, shoulders, neck, chest, stomach, thighs, legs is extremely hazardous to learning how to play guitar properly.

Practicing the right things in the right way will give you amazing results - even if you practice only 10 - 20 minutes a day.

3: Learn the difference between practice time and noodling time.

Basically, you learn how to play guitar in two ways:- 1: when you practice, and, 2: when you noodle and try out new ideas.

Practice Time is SERIOUS Time!

It's when you are specifically and very deliberately teaching your body and brain new motor and muscle-memory skills. This is all done very slowly, with great care and meticulous attention to detail. Never practice fast.

Practice time is where you develop muscle-memory and train your body to act in the most beneficial way for playing guitar. Remember - GIGO!

This is the foundation building time.. where you lay the foundation for learning HOW to play guitar the best way you can - without imposing limitations upon yourself through bad practice habits.

Noodling Time.

Noodling Time is where you learn how to play guitar by putting into practice what you study during your practice time. It's where you to steal licks, chords and solos off records. It's where you hunch over your cd player or computer with your guitar trying to hear and learn that tricky chord or lick.

It's where good habits can easily become undone!

Better to do this... Once you learn a lick, sit down in your chair in the proper position and play that lick over and over at a slow speed while focusing on being as relaxed as possible and with absolute minimal finger movement. Program that lick, your physical movements and relaxation "perfectly" into your brain. Only when it becomes 2nd nature to you, and you "own" that lick, should you start speeding up.

But... always focus on being as relaxed as possible.

Noodling is fun, and a necessary part of learning how to play guitar. Do as much as you can. But.. don't mistake it for real practice time. Don't noodle with bad habits either.

Next... you need to ensure you are practicing the correct things in the correct way too. But that's another story.

About the Author

John Bilderbeck has been teaching guitar for 30 years. He shares his valuable insights on his new Free Guitar Chords web site. For a FREE e-Book on How to Master Guitar Like a Pro, visit: www.free-guitar-chords.com now.







"In these books you have expert teaching with cutting edge multimedia to provide you with a simple and engaging ways of learning to play guitar."

FastTrack Guitar Songbook 1 - Level 2 - sheet music at www.sheetmusicplus.com FastTrack Guitar Songbook 1 - Level 2 Fast Track Music Instruction. Book & CD Package. With notes and tablature. Size 9x12 inches. 40 pages. Published by Hal Leonard. (697296)
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FastTrack Guitar Songbook 2 - Level 1 - sheet music at www.sheetmusicplus.com FastTrack Guitar Songbook 2 - Level 1 Fast Track Music Instruction. Book & CD Package. With notes and tablature. Size 9x12 inches. 64 pages. Published by Hal Leonard. (695343)
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FastTrack Guitar Songbook 2 - Level 2 - sheet music at www.sheetmusicplus.com FastTrack Guitar Songbook 2 - Level 2 Fast Track Music Instruction. Book & CD Package. With notes and tablature. Size 9x12 inches. 40 pages. Published by Hal Leonard. (695344)
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Guitar Coach - sheet music at www.sheetmusicplus.com Guitar Coach PC CD-ROM. CD-ROM software. CD-ROM only. Size 7.75x9.6 inches. Published by Charanga. (451060)
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FastTrack Mini Chords & Scales for Guitar - sheet music at www.sheetmusicplus.com FastTrack Mini Chords & Scales for Guitar Fast Track Music Instruction. Book & CD Package. With notes and tablature. Size 5.5x5 inches. 112 pages. Published by Hal Leonard. (695510)
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Fast Forward Funk Guitar - sheet music at www.sheetmusicplus.com Fast Forward Funk Guitar Composed 3-1-01. 64 pages. Published by Wise Publications. (AM958529)
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"First, you need to understand the "backbone" of ANY regular major scale.

That "backbone" is this:

Musical notes are separated by what's called a "half-step". Each fret on your guitar represents a half-step away from the fret above or below it. Two adjacent half-steps are referred to as a whole-step. (two adjacent frets on your guitar)

So here's the "backbone" of any regular major scale. I'll use C for this example.

1. Between the first and second note, there's a WHOLE-STEP (C to D)

2. Between the second and third note, there's a WHOLE-STEP (D to E)

3. Between the third and fourth note, there's a HALF-STEP (E to F)

4. Between the fourth and fifth note, there's a WHOLE-STEP (F to G)

5. Between the fifth and sixth note, there's a WHOLE-STEP (G to A)

6. Between the sixth and seventh note, there's a WHOLE-STEP (A to B)

7. Between the seventh and octave first note, there's a HALF-STEP (B to C)

So, to know the notes of any major scale, you just start with the note of your choice and apply the steps.

That is;

WHOLE-STEP, WHOLE-STEP, HALF-STEP, WHOLE-STEP,

WHOLE-STEP, WHOLE-STEP, HALF-STEP

Remember: In music, the steps between B & C and E & F are always half-steps.

Now let's take a look at those seven notes and the positions they're in. Those positions have names and characteristics in relationship to the chords that go with the scale.

The 1st position is called the Tonic and it's chord characteristic is Major. In this case, C major.

The 2nd position is called the Supertonic and it's chord characteristic is minor. In this case, D minor.

The 3rd position is called the Mediant and it's chord characteristic is minor. In this case, E minor.

The 4th position is called the Subdominant and it's chord characteristic is Major. In this case, F major.

The 5th position is called the Dominant and it's chord characteristic is Major. In this case, G major.

The 6th position is called the Submediant and it's chord characteristic is minor. In this case, A minor.

The 7th position is called the Subtonic and it's chord characteristic is diminished. In this case, B diminished.

Now look what we know! We know all of the notes in the scale (or key) AND the fundamental chords that go with it! Hey, that's all you need to get going. Chords for rhythm and notes for lead playing! And...you know what?...as long as you play only these notes and chords, you'll never play anything wrong!"






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Updated: 2/19/07