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Questions tagged [guitar]

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

35
votes
17answers
60k views

How to minimize the pain for a beginning guitar student so they won’t give up before they develop callouses?

This is a common problem and solving it will ultimately lead to a much higher success rate for beginning guitar students. So I wanted to share the information here on Music and Theory. Many of my ...
62
votes
24answers
164k views

Best method to learn to play barre chords?

I've been trying to learn the F chord for a while now, and I am having a very hard time playing the barre chord. I've read that pulling back slightly with your finger and using the body of the guitar ...
67
votes
21answers
39k views

How often should I replace the strings on my guitar?

When and why should you replace your guitar strings?
15
votes
2answers
229k views

On a guitar, what keys correspond to different capo positions?

I've long had this question. I know some music theory, but I can only get a vague idea as to the progression of keys when moving the capo down a guitar's neck. I'm fairly certain that the guitar is in ...
132
votes
12answers
34k views

Why is the guitar tuned like it is?

Why is there that funny tuning kink between the G and B string on a guitar in standard tuning? I.E. the gap (interval) between the rest of the adjoining strings is 5 frets (or a perfect fourth), but ...
27
votes
13answers
124k views

Noise while not touching guitar strings or metal parts

I get a buzzing noise from my guitar when idle. However, when I touch the strings or touch any metal parts (strings, bridge or the metal portion near the output jack), the noise goes away completely. ...
52
votes
13answers
43k views

How do you identify a good acoustic guitar?

What do you look for when going for a guitar? I own an acoustic and am looking for a better one. What should I be looking for? Wood quality, brand, strings, etc.?
43
votes
10answers
116k views

Why learn scales? What are they for?

I tried Googling but it seems there is no answer for this one. So the internet assumes everyone knows what scales are for? Why should I learn them? Are they important to be a good guitarist?
21
votes
4answers
159k views

How does string gauge affect a guitar's sound and playability?

Guitar strings are available in a variety of gauges. What effect does my choice of string gauge have on the sound of my guitar? What effect does it have on playability?
30
votes
10answers
48k views

What is intonation and how can I find out if my guitar has correct intonation?

What is intonation? What is the best way to check my intonation and fix it if necessary?
6
votes
3answers
9k views

How to make a song with chords and scales?

I play acoustic guitar and have been learning a bunch of chords and scales. I can play many progressions already, and I am starting to write music. I am wondering how you would bridge chord ...
10
votes
11answers
9k views

How do you tune your guitar?

I'd like to hear about the different techniques of tuning a guitar with standard tuning, and why you use them.
22
votes
12answers
16k views

How do I properly stretch my newly strung strings?

I came across this string stretcher device. It's called The Stretcha. It claims to properly and evenly stretch new strings and maintain tuning. I never really made a point to properly stretch ...
19
votes
5answers
21k views

How do I choose my first guitar for self-learning?

Let's say I've never played the guitar, or I've only learned to pluck a string and play a chord but have forgotten most of it. Now, I've become interested and would like to try it out. I don't want to ...
65
votes
23answers
5k views

Ways to get out of a scalar rut?

I'm a well versed and experienced guitarist. I have a decent sense for rhythm and melody, but I have a VERY hard time with soloing. I know you've heard it all before I'm one of those guys that got ...
15
votes
6answers
39k views

What factors affect a guitar's ability to sustain a note?

There are effects and gadgets that can create a long sustained note, but what about the guitar itself? I have a squier standard strat which I can't help but feel could be letting notes ring longer, ...
37
votes
15answers
141k views

Why shouldn't I put electric guitar strings on my acoustic guitar?

I've always found even the lightest acoustic (bronze) guitar strings to be a bit too heavy to play comfortably. Electric (nickel) guitar strings tend to be lighter. But nobody uses electric strings on ...
23
votes
5answers
5k views

When tuning a guitar, how should I strike the strings?

When tuning a guitar, what is the best way to strike a string to get it as close to pitch as possible? I'd like to get it as close to the right pitch as I possibly can. I've noticed with my tuner (it'...
19
votes
9answers
2k views

Is it possible to create the illusion of a sub-harmonic?

The way I understand it, a normal plucked tone consists of a great many overtones in addition to the base tone. A pinched harmonic, however, shifts the base tone higher into the overtone series by ...
13
votes
1answer
6k views

How do I use string gauge tables?

I have seen that string manufacturers publish tables of string gauges and tensions. For example, this one. How can I use these to choose a set of strings for my instrument?
15
votes
10answers
67k views

Effects of keeping a guitar in the car

I have a sales job, and am on the road most days. I often find myself with free time between appointments and would like to take advantage of that free time by practicing guitar. I have a 3/4 size ...
31
votes
2answers
17k views

Why is my guitar's saddle at an angle?

Most acoustic guitars I've seen, including my own, have an angled saddle (the white strip holding up the strings): This makes the bass strings longer than the treble strings. Why is this? ...
7
votes
5answers
11k views

Tips playing F barre chord

Any tips for a newbie in playing the F barre chord. I find it very hard to put my fingers in place. I've got a strat. I hear you can move it up and down the neck for other barre chords.
6
votes
3answers
8k views

Learning to play guitar songs using on-line tabs - how to get strum patterns?

I am a relatively new guitarist and have been using online tabs such as this one: http://tabs.ultimate-guitar.com/b/beatles/let_it_be_crd.htm to learn how to play new songs. While those tabs ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

Choosing a guitar: left handed or right handed

When I was a kid and took a guitar for the first time my first instinct was to hold it in a left handed manner. I still feel, that it's my natural way to play. But today I watched the video "How to ...
25
votes
6answers
66k views

What is the first scale one should learn on guitar

The title really sums it all up but I'll try expand it slightly. Lets say I'm learning guitar and would like to improve my guitar work. Which of the scales should I learn first and why?
32
votes
7answers
33k views

How is this B flat guitar chord physically possible?

This chord diagram is from the GarageBand chord trainer (I'm a beginner). How is it possible to put a barre down on the third fret without also muting the top E string?
16
votes
10answers
5k views

What are the various methods of tuning the guitar?

This is not a question as much as it is a discussion. I am curious to know what are the different techniques to tune the guitar (using standard tuning) given you know that one string is in tune. I ...
26
votes
10answers
56k views

How to bend and release without flicking the other strings?

I'm trying to bend up then back down on the G string (so it plays both notes, I'm not muting the bend back down to G) but I always catch my fingernail on the D string. So when I let the bend back ...
7
votes
2answers
12k views

Which strings should I use for DADGAD tuning on my acoustic guitar?

I have recently switched to DADGAD tuning, before that I was using light tension strings ( 12 16 24 32 42 53 ). But because of DADGAD, to compensate for the lack of tension on the neck, I wanted to ...
13
votes
16answers
54k 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? ...
5
votes
5answers
1k views

Need Help in Starting to Learn Guitars?

I am a beginning guitar player. I enjoyed playing in my childhood, but for some reason I was not able to learn. But now I want to learn guitar. I wasn't sure whether to buy an electric guitar or a ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

How can I easily manage different tunings?

This is probably appropriate for a range of instruments, and I have seen mentioned in other questions that professional musicians can cope easily with transpositions, different instruments that play ...
6
votes
3answers
9k views

What are the benefits of practicing standing up (guitar)?

I can see how practicing standing up would be better for performing guitarists, but I am wondering if there are any other advantages to practicing standing up vs. sitting down for any guitarist?
0
votes
3answers
17k views

How to play a G-chord?

Does anybody have tips on how to play a G-chord on the guitar? My band director taught us, but for some reason I just find it very difficult. Help!
79
votes
8answers
4k views

Ten Minute Practice Techniques For Guitar?

Unfortunately, I can't play every day. However, I am trying to practice at least 5-10 minutes here and there. What are some good theory or scale techniques/practice methods I should have ready to ...
62
votes
21answers
66k views

Changing the strings: one by one, or by taking all strings off at one time?

The title says it all. Should I change strings one by one, or take them all at once? Does this matter at all? If I take all strings off, will it damage my neck in any way, because the pressure is ...
19
votes
4answers
3k views

What is a string skipping exercise?

What is a string skipping exercise? I've heard about this exercise a lot, including on this website. What is it? What skills does it develop? Can you give an example?
25
votes
5answers
13k views

How do I stop muting nearby strings or will my fingers reshape after some practice?

I recently started learning to play guitar. I cut my nails completely, so I can press the strings. Often I need to endlessly re-arrange my fingers because I'm muting nearby strings. I correct one ...
16
votes
3answers
3k views

What is the the Nashville Numbers system?

Recently, a couple of my bandmates were talking about a technique they use called Nashville Numbers. It's similar to writing out chords, but instead uses numbers. These numbers are a pattern that ...
7
votes
5answers
507 views

Resources for learning the Blues [closed]

Can anyone recommend any good resources (books or online) for learning the Blues on the guitar? Scales and theory is what I am looking for.
16
votes
4answers
13k 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?
3
votes
2answers
19k views

How to record my guitar on my computer

So I want to make some guitar covers and need a way to record my playing. I've set my multi-effect board and amp up so that I have the sound I want coming from the amp, I just need a way to get it on ...
16
votes
3answers
16k views

How does The Talkbox work?

Beck started using this in the early 70's - they called it The Bag for a hot minute (as did Stevie Wonder) - Frampton's career came alive when he started using it - how does it work?
12
votes
7answers
44k views

Fingers Too Short for Barre Chords?

My wife is learning the guitar and is getting pretty good. She gets frustrated though because she can't play barre chords. She claims that her fingers are literally too short to ever be able to play ...
12
votes
4answers
48k views

Putting steel strings on a cheap nylon guitar

I was trying to get back into playing guitar. I only took lessons for a few years with a nylon string guitar that was fairly cheap. When I pulled the guitar out of the attic it needed new strings so I ...
6
votes
9answers
21k views

What is a perfect fifth?

I have gone through many documents, but don't understand what a perfect fifth is. Can somebody please explain with an example? (An example is important!) I have already found these explanations, but ...
24
votes
10answers
6k views

How to do “metal” harmonics (pinch etc)

I've always struggled with this, tried watching Youtube tutorials, but can't get it to work. Should you hold the pick in any particular way? I've always held my picks with three fingers, for ...
23
votes
8answers
15k views

How to hide a flat pick in the right hand when switching to finger picking, Warren Haynes style

Watch any Warren Haynes video on YouTube and you'll notice that he often likes to mix it up and play solos with a pick but mid-way switch to using his fingers. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EMxG90vP-...
6
votes
4answers
2k views

How do you sing and strum guitar chords simultaneously?

In my experience with the guitar, I think I do best with strumming. But it's always difficult for me when I have try to keep singing while strumming. How can I learn to do both?