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Help me learn to play guitar?

(21 Posts)
JustHereForTheLaffs Thu 21-Apr-16 00:44:34

I'm not musical, can't read music or play any instruments, but I'd like a hobby and have been lent a guitar. I have a couple of books and I've looked online, but I'm really struggling. I can't get how to strum, how to know the rhythm etc and I can't change chords smoothly. And my fingers hurt!

Am I better just picking the strings instead of strumming?

Any tips?

Ferguson Sat 23-Apr-16 19:41:52

People think guitar is easy - BUT IT IS NOT!

It is a great shame you weren't lent a Keyboard, as that is much easier and you can see all the Keys, so only have to press the right ones!

I'll try and find other guitar information I've sent before, as I have done similar replies for beginners.

Ferguson Sat 23-Apr-16 19:48:59

Here is a bit of information, but there is more:

Playing ONLY chords can be a bit limiting, so knowing a BIT about music might help. If you have access to a Keyboard, that can make 'chords' easier to understand.

Also knowing the 'harmonic series' (and starting to UNDERSTAND it) is useful, but it does require effort to 'get your head around it'!

anotherdayanothersquabble Sat 23-Apr-16 19:56:15

My son is using Justin Guitar and loving it!

Ferguson Sat 23-Apr-16 19:57:06

(the wikipedia link didn't work, but you might be able to 'rescue' it)

Something else you might like to listen to, and maybe one day want to get involved in, is music from Martin Taylor. I know it is too difficult to contemplate at the moment, but it gives you some idea of what else is out there:

Paperm0ver Sat 23-Apr-16 20:11:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DontKnowWhatImDoingHere Sun 24-Apr-16 01:38:29

Thanks. Unfortunately I don't have access to a keyboard.

I'll look at the suggestions.

Paper, some insider guitar knowledge sounds good smile

DontKnowWhatImDoingHere Sun 24-Apr-16 01:39:26

Sorry, forgot to say, I'm JustHereForTheLaffs, I've name changed.

ReallyTired Sun 24-Apr-16 03:02:13

Do you have a classical guitar or acoustic? Nylon strings are less painful than steel. I suggest getting an app for your phone to help with tuning. If you have an iPad the app Four Chords is very good.

I'm teaching myself ukelele which is a lot simpler as there are only four strings.

DontKnowWhatImDoingHere Sun 24-Apr-16 06:14:50

Acoustic. I'm managing with the steel strings - just. Any good books I can follow?

LegArmpits Sun 24-Apr-16 06:55:28

Another vote for justinguitar, he's on YouTube.

Paperm0ver Sun 24-Apr-16 21:09:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

southeastastra Sun 24-Apr-16 21:13:10

i had lessons and they were fun, i can still remember all the chords. i did then buy the ernie ball (i think) books which were also helpful. I bought an electic guitar and had all the kit but it was so hard to try to find other people to play with that i gave up. but I still have my lovely guitars and remember how to play power chords plugged in and can play slide guitar. Lessons are definitely fun if you have the right teacher.s

southeastastra Sun 24-Apr-16 21:14:50

and booking an hour lesson a week will make you focus and switch off and just have fun for that hour. am tempted to go back!

ReallyTired Sun 24-Apr-16 21:18:54

"Are you a guitarist ReallyTired?"

I am not a guitarist. My son is very keen on guitar though. I learnt a little through supporting through his guitar playing over the years. I had a go on both my son's acoustic and classical guitars. Nylon strings are more gentle on beginner's fingers.

DontKnowWhatImDoingHere Mon 25-Apr-16 00:53:45

Thanks. A friend has helped a little, I just thought a book would help too, some simple chords to play.

NathalieM Thu 28-Apr-16 16:15:58

I think YouTube would be your best bet. There's plenty of great lessons on their which you can do at your own pace, as well as different levels do you can keep getting better.

My cousins son learnt to play guitar entirely on YouTube, and he has great skills. So I'd highly recommend it.

YvaineStormhold Fri 29-Apr-16 21:41:52

I started around the age of 40 and I absolutely love it.

Learn C, Em, G, D chords - that'll get you through loads of songs.

Power through the pain when it comes to your fingers - they'll soon toughen up.

If you have a nice friend who plays, that can be helpful. My dp sets me straight sometimes, and it's nice to have someone to play with when you start getting a bit better. I hated having lessons - sucked all the joy out of it.

There are some books that are full of 3 chord versions of songs. I bought a few of these, then just tortured my guitar through them. My first song was the White Stripes version of Jolene.

Seriously, just enjoy it. I'm still rubbish, but it brings me such joy to be able to hack my way through some of my favourites. Great when DP joins in and the kids start singing. I can lose hours.

My best buy was a little electric tuner that you stick on the end of your guitar. Or you can tune it with an app on your phone.

Good luck!

DontKnowWhatImDoingHere Sat 30-Apr-16 04:10:27

Thanks Yvaine. Can you suggest any books in particular? I think if I have a book to work through, I'll stick with it. YouTube doesn't work for me.

YvaineStormhold Sat 30-Apr-16 07:24:49

The Justinguitar Beginners course book is really good and very encouraging. He gives lots of little tips and short cuts and I loved it.

Also, he does a range of beginners songbooks.

I used a range of books called 'Three Chord Songbooks' to start with, but I really started to progress with the Justinguitar one, because he covers how to strum each song, etc.

DontKnowWhatImDoingHere Sat 30-Apr-16 12:41:14


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