For questions about guitar playing in general. For questions specifically about solid-body electric guitars, see "electric-guitar". For questions specifically about acoustic guitars with or without pickup systems, see "acoustic-guitar".

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10
votes
3answers
386 views

How to develop soloing vocabulary

Background: My first guitar teacher used to show me small licks or note patterns that had that special quality of arousing interest during a solo improvisation. They were essentially "tools" in my ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

What are some good slap guitar resources?

I'm fascinated by the technique of most of the guys on CandyRat records, specifically Andy Mckee. Are there any resources out there on slap guitar technique? How can I too become as epic as him at ...
9
votes
10answers
580 views

What is the secret of jazz phrases?

I'm diving into Jazz, both with guitar and trumpet, and I'm looking for that typical jazzy sound when traveling from lows to highs (and opposite). How were Miles and friends achieving it? What ...
9
votes
4answers
4k views

Why does pedal order matter?

Why does the order in which I put my guitar/bass pedals matter? For example, why does the compressor needs to be the first one in the order?
7
votes
2answers
10k views

Some acoustic guitars are easy to play but some aren't. What affects playability?

I was comparing a fender and an epiphone acoustic guitar and noticed that fender was easier for my left hand. Both guitars have the same dimensions and seemed to have same string gauge. I thought ...
7
votes
2answers
233 views

How to keep from tensing up when I click the metronome faster?

I've been trying to build up speed with my tremolo exercises, and the demon I keep fighting is a sort of negative feedback loop fed by worrying about deviations from the tempo, increasing attention on ...
6
votes
1answer
207 views

Scalpel technique in Guitar

What is Scalpel technique in Guitar ? I searched on internet but does not show proper results.It says "Scalpel - move only your thumb and forefinger" Can you please guide me through videos,images ...
6
votes
4answers
184 views

What are some harmonic options for layering guitar lines while recording?

I would like to layer multiple guitar lines for a section of a song that I'm working on - what are some harmonic variations that I would be able to use?
6
votes
4answers
1k views

Do acoustic or classical guitars need to be set up?

Obviously acoustic and classical guitars don't have external pickups that need to be setup, but are there any other adjustments that need to be done on a regular basis? There doesn't seem to be a ...
5
votes
3answers
910 views

How do I mute the guitar in a song so I can play with the backing track?

I am tired of Karaoke style backing tracks and want to replace the guitar in a song that I already have. Can I do this with software?
5
votes
3answers
1k views

Why tune the guitar other than standard?

I have a question. How does tuning come into play in guitar songs? See, I can find the tab of a song in the guitar by ear and I was taught that in tuning standard the fifth fret of the low e string is ...
5
votes
5answers
5k views

Choosing a guitar cabinet

I have settled on the amplifier head to buy for my guitar, but I am not sure of the cabinet yet. I know that there are open-back vs closed-back options, and I assume that the quality of the speaker ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

How do I find a good reverb pedal for a huge, soul-filling sound?

I'm looking to experiment with some post-rock sort of stuff, and my guitar sound is just far too empty right now. I've got an echo park that I've been messing around with, but given that it's ...
4
votes
4answers
1k views

Flatpicking: how can I make my floating-pick-hand less bouncy?

Can anyone suggest how I might improve my "floating fist" style flatpicking? I'm trying to clean up my pick technique for the sake of accuracy, feel, speed, and general ease-of-playing. I use the ...
4
votes
3answers
5k views

Can I connect my semi-acoustic guitar to my computer and get output from its speakers?

I know the proper thing to do is to buy an amplifier for this purpose. But can I connect to my computer and get the output from the speakers? Works fine with recording, but not direct output. Is there ...
3
votes
2answers
160 views

What is a good resource to learn how to build chords from scales?

I would like to understand how chords are made (like G/F# or Bb etc.) so I can figure out what a chord is by remembering the scale. Is there a good resource for learning this? If I want to learn how ...
3
votes
1answer
162 views

How do you play barre chords which are at an angle?

I read about the concept of an angled/oblique barre chord, where you use your index finger to play 2 different frets across different strings like so: -4- 3rd -2- 1st -3- 1st -4- 2nd --- -4- 4th (I ...
3
votes
4answers
359 views

Guitar practice - general techniques

I was delighted to come across this site. I'm a self-taught guitarist (largely electric guitar) and am continually looking to improve my playing and practice techniques. The change of running my ...
-2
votes
4answers
2k views

What's the most useful alternate tuning and why? [closed]

Whenever a guitarist wants to learn an alternate tuning, the practical details are easily addressed (string-guage, using a tuner). But the strategic aspect cannot be gained without many Saturday ...
19
votes
15answers
19k views

Why is dropped D tuning used so often?

Many metal/rock songs use dropped D tuning. What reasons are there for it?
16
votes
8answers
5k views

What are some techniques to control feedback in a musical setting?

I was always intrigued with the way Ted Nugent/Adrian Belew/Jeff Beck/Jimi Hendrix/SRV were able to control feedback and make it musical - are there guitar/amp settings and techniques that can make ...
16
votes
4answers
5k views

How to play chords like G/B

I heard that if there is a chord written like x/y then that means an x chord with y in the bass. This can be played by playing x normally, but then playing the y note on the 6th string, correct? Then ...
13
votes
1answer
573 views

Understanding a Chinese guitar tab

A Chinese friend of mine requested I learn her favourite guitar tune: http://www.yuesir.com/ipu/271.html However, I have big trouble undestanding the convention used is this tab. Could someone ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

What does it mean to play in an 'arpeggiated' style on the guitar?

I sometimes hear a guitar player described as having an 'arpeggiated' style, such as Peter Buck of R.E.M. I know that an arpeggio is the 1st, 3rd, 5th and 8th of a scale, but exactly what does it ...
12
votes
3answers
4k views

What is true bypass?

What is true bypass on a pedal? What are it's advantages? What are it's disadvantages?
11
votes
2answers
250 views

What is the proper humidity range for an acoustic guitar?

What is the range of relative humidity, in percentage, that is optimal for storing a guitar, cello, violin or the like in its case? I live in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, which is a humid environment ...
11
votes
3answers
896 views

Pentatonic scale with a sharpened 2nd note, any name?

I was messing with the A minor pentatonic scale and discovered that if I sharpen the 2nd note of the scale, it sounds very interesting to my ears, even more than the original scale. Does this already ...
11
votes
1answer
3k views

Is my Yamaha guitar counterfeit?

I bought a new Yamaha Guitar and When you look inside the guitar hole it looks like the model number is written by hand. Can you please tell me if this one is a fake one or not? The number written on ...
11
votes
3answers
1k views

Can I split guitar string gauges?

I want to know if I can split guitar string gauges, ie. using 12s on the bottom and 10s on the top, both for standard and drop tunings.
11
votes
9answers
10k views

Is it possible for a left hander to learn guitar right handed?

I am looking to get a guitar for my step son. He is largely left handed, but currently he plays the drums right handed without any difficulty. Would the same apply with learning guitar from scratch? ...
11
votes
2answers
125 views

What is this technique called?

In this video, scroll to around 1:24. Andy McKee puts his right hand on 12th fret (Not sure) and pulls out his left hand from 3rd or 4th fret producing a peculiar sound. What is this technique ...
11
votes
7answers
2k views

How To Improve My Sightreading?

I've been reading music since I was five years old, but I learned how on the piano, never on the guitar. I find that when I play guitar, I think of the notes as they relate to each other spatially: ...
10
votes
3answers
213 views

What indicators enable consumers to identify counterfeit guitars?

For consumers shopping for specific name-brand guitars, such as Gibson, how may one identify counterfeit knock-offs? Can we collectively develop a check-list of tip-offs confirmed by experienced ...
10
votes
7answers
1k views

Getting consistent tone from barre chords

Perhaps it's just that I have small hands (e.g. index finger is barely longer than the 12th fret), but I seem to have issues with barring; no matter what I do it seems there is a string that's right ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

Restringing a 12-string guitar with heavier strings - is it possible?

I'm considering using a 12-string guitar I don't play all that much as a testbed: Is it possible to restring an acoustic guitar as a baritone guitar, or even just string it so I can tune it down a few ...
10
votes
1answer
142 views

Is there any way to improve the life of my capo?

I have a spring-action grip style capo that is designed for changing the position easily. It used to be great, however now I am finding that quite often it will not fret some of the strings properly, ...
9
votes
4answers
263 views

What is a guitar truss rod?

What is the "truss rod" on a guitar? Do truss rods vary for an acoustic, electric, or classical guitar?
9
votes
3answers
10k views

What's causing this buzzing sound on the high e string?

My Takamine acoustic has a tendency to buzz when I play the high e string fretted around frets 2 and 3. I figure it's something to do with the neck and tension rod. Are there any other parts of a ...
8
votes
3answers
218 views

What does a circle before/between notes mean?

I have a score for a guitar music here, which has these strange hollow circles between notes; also before the first note: They don't look like notes, and playing them makes the music ugly, so they ...
8
votes
4answers
3k views

Beginner replacing guitar strings

I am a beginner at playing the guitar, so I recently bought myself one and then managed to break a string whilst trying to tune it. After getting over the initial disappointment, I have ordered some ...
8
votes
3answers
4k views

Factors in choosing a replacement saddle for an acoustic guitar.

I saw this in the comments section on the question "Do acoustic or classical guitars need to be set up?" The saddle material makes a difference in the sound of an acoustic too. I have a bit of a ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

What are the dos and don'ts of positioning your thumb on a guitar?

What are the Dos and Don'ts of thumb position in guitar playing? Are there bad habits or just alternative techniques?
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Fingertip sensitivity/pain related to nail separation

I've been playing for decades. Every now and then I do something that causes a fingertip on my fretting hand to be extremely sensitive — to the point where the slightest pressure causes pain. ...
7
votes
7answers
2k views

How can I strengthen my fretting hand away from my guitar?

I don't get as much time with my guitar as I'd like, and I'd like to be "in shape" for the time of day when I can play. Are there exercises I can do while I don't have my guitar that can help improve ...
7
votes
0answers
216 views

How to properly store valuable guitars?

What are the general guidelines when storing a collectors, very nice guitar (special woods, etc.), or one you value greatly? You will find humidity control systems in place at stores with "acoustic ...
7
votes
8answers
488 views

Using alternative tunings

Guitars are tuned E-A-D-G-B-E by standard, but I prefer tuning it down to C (C-F-Bb-Eb-G-C) since it gives a meatier sound and is easier on my fingers. I know there are plenty of other tunings, but ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Is there one or more “proper” finger picking styles/techniques?

Essentially, if there is some collection of proper techniques that have distinct rules or characteristics about them, that's what I'm looking for. There's not one particular artist or type of music I ...
7
votes
2answers
965 views

What are Tone Pots / Potentiometers?

Can someone please explain to me what tone pots are, and how they affect the sound of a guitar? Thanks very much :)
7
votes
2answers
622 views

Upgrade tuners or get a new guitar?

I have an Ibanez V70CE Acoustic-Electric guitar. While it was not expensive, I like the way it feels and it sounds just fine. The problem is it doesn't like to stay in tune. I always use high quality ...
6
votes
3answers
814 views

How can I develop mastery of polyrhythms in playing guitar?

(I am asking this question because someone just posted a question which misused the term "polyrhythm", and subsequently, on realizing the mistake, edited the question to reflect their real question -- ...