Hi everyone just got my first acustic guitar but I am getting confussed where to start can anyone help me?


And great site
Take lessons.
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start with learning simple open chords, try to memorize them all. then try to learn power chords shapes. after that you'll have ideas what you have to learn next
By open chords what do you mean I have no real idea about musical instruments or what half of the terms just know that I have wanted to learn the guitar for a long time and now have got round to getting one, before I start with lessons I want to try and learn the basics

Thanks for the replies already
These are some simple open chord shapes:

There are a lot more you could learn but those five major chords are a good place to start.
In that picture, the string on the left represents the thickest string on your guitar (low E), and the string on the right is the thinnest (high E). The dots represent where you should place your fingers on the string and the numbers are fingers that it suggests you use (e.g. 1 is your index finger), though if you find a different arrangement of fingers more comfortable, then use that. An x above the string means don't play that string, and an 'o' means leave it open, i.e. play it but don't touch it with any of your fingers.

Try to strum them cleanly (without any unwanted buzzing sounds or anything) and practice switching between them. Then try playing each note in the chord individually in a pattern (this is called an arpeggio). It'll take some time to get it perfect as you'll likely need to improve your finger strength and "muscle memory". Stick at it. Stuff like this is boring at first, but it'll make the interesting stuff a lot easier later on.

Have fun
Last edited by captainsnazz at Dec 28, 2011,
Get a teacher don't make the same mistakes I made self teaching ..
But this goes up to 11
Realize you are going to have to put a lot of work into this, so don't get discouraged if you feel you are progressing slow, I think everyone feels like that when starting out.

Define general goals: Technical master, being a good versatile musician, simple campfire strummer... have a general idea about what you want to achieve.

In terms of technique like has been sugested, learning open and power chords and working on strumming and picking are good exercises to start working your left and right hands
Been trying to learn 1 or 2 chords but after 5 mins my fingers kill I know you need the skin to go hard on them how long should I practice and for my fingers to harden up a bit

Thanks for your replies
I know it's going to be slow getting to grips with playing and you can't learn over night but should I be aiming to get to a certain point say by the end of a week or month

Thanks for your help people much appriciated
YouTube is your friend...

Search for "Beginning Guitar Lessons" Most that I've seen are pretty good... If it's a kid that say's "Like" or "um" a lot, or calls the frets "those metal thingy's on the wood" Pick a different video...
I Play Guitar
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Quote by marc82
I know it's going to be slow getting to grips with playing and you can't learn over night but should I be aiming to get to a certain point say by the end of a week or month

Well I think there isn't really a right or wrong answer to that question.

I think having a general guideline of want you want is useful so that you can practise the things you will be using the most and not feeling lost about where you are going. I'm not a shredder, I see myself more of a musician that happens to play guitar, so I don't practise picking exercises that much. If I was a metal guy I would probably spend a lot of time on that...

Personally I wouldn't set goals like you suggest in the quote. You should have an idea of what to learn as a beginner, don't worry to much about how much time it takes to learn, just learn it well.

Justin Guitar has a great beginner course and he is a really good teacher. I would recommend you to follow plan

Good luck, it's an amazing instrument to learn
If you're going to self-learn, make sure you at least get the basic idea of the techniques correct. For example, if you're going to be learning how to use your fingers to pick the strings, learn it right. Learning a technique very wrongly (I'm not talking about just strange angles in your hand here and there, but a totally different position to achieve the same thing).

Understand that whatever you do at first will be foreign and frustrating. Your pick will catch on the wrong string. Your fingers will pick the wrong string. Your guitar will be horribly out-of-tune but you won't even realize it. It takes time for these kind of kinks to slowly work themselves out as your muscle memory and your ear develops.

Keep yourself interested. Don't fall into the trap of learning scales and chords and whatnot but not actually finding a way to use them. Learn some songs. It's even better if the song is out of your reach because you have fun and progress at the same time.

Edit: I notice no one really explained what "open chords" are. Open chords are, as far as I know, chords with one or more open (i.e unfretted; "unpressed") strings ringing.
Last edited by triface at Dec 29, 2011,
For the pain on your fingers, that's expected. Just keep practicing everyday and you won't feel a thing soon enough

The diagram and instructions above will be very helpful. If you can't afford lessons, go to a guitar store and ask the guy for a good beginner's book. It'll help with chords, notes, and basic theory and scales. Also, as for goals, find a really easy guitar song to play that you like and make that a first goal.
Once you get a good grip on some of your chords, you should really look into the major scale. In the long run its going to help you learn your pentatonics and your modes.
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Quote by marc82
I know it's going to be slow getting to grips with playing and you can't learn over night but should I be aiming to get to a certain point say by the end of a week or month

The best advice I can give you, is to follow Justin Sandercoe's beginner guitar lessons. They're very well structured and build up difficulty as you go along, and there are simple songs explained in each lesson as well.


Each lesson should take you anywhere from 1 to 3 weeks, depending on your level and your practice time of course.

I think it is very important to have some kind of predefined lesson pattern, so you know what you have to practice, and what's going to be next.

If you want to set goals for yourself, don't do that in the very beginning. Start doing this when you got a few chords down, and you can realistically make a guess on how long something's going to take you, otherwise it's just going to discourage you.
Quote by marc82
I know it's going to be slow getting to grips with playing and you can't learn over night but should I be aiming to get to a certain point say by the end of a week or month

Thanks for your help people much appriciated

Not really no, things take as long as they take, and it depends how much and how well you practice.

Certainly I'd say it's going to take a few months before you feel "comfortable" with the guitar. At the moment it feels like a big stupid plank of wood covered in barbed wire and it does take time for it to stop feeling quite so alien and start feeling like it's supposed to be there.
Actually called Mark!

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Honestly, the best thing you should do is take lessons from a legit guitar teacher.....I was stupid and I tried to teach myself...I did that for a year...then I finally decided to take lessons. I told my guitar teacher i had been teaching myself for about a year. He told me to play so he can see, he cut me off and said "oooook we need to work on your technique"

trust me it's a great investment!!! goodluck!
I didn't read everything so if someone already said this sorry...


Learn scales by chord and by single note. That way, if you know what key you're in, you'll be able to find the appropriate chords as well as single notes.

If you're teaching yourself, it is easiest to remember different keys by finding a song you want to learn, find out what key it is in, and then learn it.

Also, know that any open chord can be moved up the fretboard at different intervals to form the next chord(s) in a scale. Ex: Open C *32010 can be moved to *54030 which is an alternate voicing of D. But it is most common to see E and A root bar chords. Ex: E 022100 moved to 3rd fret is G: 355433, and so on.

I know it seems like a lot, but its totally worth it! Hope this helps a little!