Hey Everyone,

So I've been an off and on guitar player for about 8-9 years now. My skill level is really limited because I have been so off and on with playing and such. I've had 2 teachers in the past, both with different styles of teaching guitar. I know know basic chords, limited music theory (like keys, maj/minor scales, intervals). I have a hard time playing fast songs as my picking dexterity kinda sucks and isn't that developed. I love music and want to actually be serious about becoming a better musician and enjoy music at the same time. But I have no idea where to start. I don't even know how really evaluate where I'm at because I'm not a complete noob to the guitar or music in general but I'm also don't have the abilities of someone who first picked up a guitar 8 years ago. At all. Not even close..

I'm in college and don't have the money for a teacher. I'm hoping that I can reteach myself a solid foundation and learn from you guys how to progress from there.

So where would you guys suggest I begin? How do I practice? WHAT do I practice? How do I know where I should even start? How I do I set reasonable goals because I don't want to flake out like I have done in the past.



I can relate to your situation. I started out young using an acoustic guitar when I was less than 10 years old (7-9 yrs old approx), had a teacher yet my flaming interest was not there so I decided to stop. I continued when I was in my high school days. Maybe I was more or less 15 years old when I started picking up a guitar again and from that moment on, it did not stop. Been to a lot of bands playing Rock, Punk, Ska, Emo, Nu Metal through a decade. Now, I'm 25 years of age, having 12 guitars at home and having an awesome Metallica Tribute band for almost a year. But still I'm trying to study riffs from Melodic Death Metal bands.

Beginning point... First, I want to ask, who influenced you to pick up the guitar again? What types of music or artists/bands have you been listening to lately? My point... Having a musical influence or musical heroes is the key to set yourself to the learning experience or in your case, re-learning experience.

How do you practice... I consider myself self-taught. It's in my personality that I could easily learn thing especially in guitar playing if I learn it my way. Yet, if you're having trouble with that, find a neighbor, a classmate, a schoolmate that is also starting and start studying together.

WHAT do you practice... Since you have the fundamentals already, you may just use tabs of your musical influence to learn new songs or better yet try to learn by ear - listen to the songs then try to emulate. It's more fun that way to be honest.

Where to start... I think the earlier answers could provide you with the answer for this one.

Reasonable goals... About that, it would depend on how you will get satisfied with playing again.

And another tip, If you feel that you are already well founded, try to expand horizons, learn other songs from other artists regardless of genre... we'll as long as it's real music.

I hope I helped you with this one..

first you should try playing a song or two and see how well you can play that... also think about what kind of music you like and what you would like to be able to do on the guitar. seriously there is no reason for you to start learning how to shred like a metal guitarist when your goal is to play some soothing folk music, not saying they cant be mixed but they're pretty different things.

another thing to think about is how well you remember chords and scales, you cant really move on if you haven't figured that out. so first pick out two or three guitar goals, one long term (dream big) and one or two short term goals (something that can be attained in only one or two months). once you're done that you are ready for more specific direction.

Hope that helped...
Quote by Dirk Gently
Some pieces are only meant to be played by people with six fingers on their fretting hand. Sorry.
^^Nice post (Six-String Madman).

I agree. Find a song you love and have always loved and learn to play it from start to finish. Then learn another. Get some songs under your belt really. It will help keep it enjoyable. Spend some time with a metronome and some time training your ear.

Good timing, a good ear, and a reasonable repertoire of songs that you love, you will enjoy your music more and more all the time, and other people will too
Try www.justinguitar.com I was in the same situation as you and it really helped a lot. Specially to know what are some of the topics you should work on depending your actual level.