Steps For Amateurs

This is an article for amateurs that need guidance on playing guitar. I covered everything that helped me learn to become the guitarist I am today.

Ultimate Guitar
For everyone that has been playing guitar for a while, including myself, you would remember how hard it was to begin playing. I remember when I first started out I almost snapped cause I wasn't as good as some of the guitarist I listened to. However I didn't snap; instead a friend of mine told me some things to calm my nerves. First of all, in order to play guitar you have to be patient. You're not going to be a great guitarist when you begin playing. It takes a lot of practice and a lot of patience. Next thing you need to do is learn everything you possibly can about the guitar itself. Learn as many terms as you can. Then you should learn your notes of the guitar, where they are and what they are called; learn tablature/tabs as well. The next thing you should do is learn chords and how to situate your fret fingers in order to play them. Once you have that down you have the basics of the guitar. The next step in guitar is the power chords, you learn the same way as you did the chords. The next step is not required, however it would be best if you learned it any ways. Finger picking is the next step. Learn to finger pick, a lot of guitar players do this; but not many. All of what I have told you covers basic rhythm guitar playing. If you want to go on playing lead you have to learn rhythm guitar! In order to be a good lead guitarist, it is wise to learn rhythm. Until you get rhythm playing down, don't start on lead. Before I continue on, I must correct myself. The first then you should learn is music theory. Music theory is very important! Okay now on to lead. Once you have rhythm down and all the other stuff I told you to learn, then you are ready for lead guitar. The first thing you should get to know, which will always be your best friend, are scales. Learn as many scales as you can, because when you are playing with another guitarists and you want to make up a solo to the rhythm he/her is playing, then scales are the best thing for you. All famous lead guitarist use scales. You will find a scale in every solo. Once you have that down then you are ready to move on to techniques. There are many techniques out there that can really help you out in soloing. One thing not mentioned in the rhythm section is galloping. Galloping is a good technique to use in thrashing. The other techniques that would help both your speed and your control is shreading and sweeping. Learn those two techniques and your skill of guitar playing will increase. The last thing to learn is finger tapping. This technique was invented back in the late 70's by guitar legend Eddie Van Halen. Finger tapping is one of the most greatest techniques to be invented. Once you master all of this, then I am sure you will become a great guitarist... if you stick with it. I apologize for not giving you more detail on the learning process. However if you need more explanation on the things I covered then just look them up on the web. If you are now an amateur guitarist and you realized I left something out I apologize. I covered everything that helped me learn to become the guitarist I am today. For all the other guitarist out there remember: "practice makes perfect" & "patience is a virtue". For comments or questions feel free to e-mail them to me

34 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I don't like it how your saying this is the best way to learn. It depends on the person. I like most of your comments, but put more detai into it nobody gives a rat's ass when finger tapping was discovered, how do you do it.pretty good all around though
    please be aware that all spam posts have been deleted. keep the useless crap down to a minimum. if you post something that doesnt pertaint to the article and it is deemed useless, it will be deleted. quite simple people.
    A basic plan for learners but lacking in great detail and explaination. ***--
    very nice, a whole life music chart, all layed out nice and pretty. It's easier said then done, but sounds like a good plan to me
    Obviously that omanyen kid sucks at guitar and can only play tabbed music. Learn some theory kid.
    Ok, you say, first learn this, then learn that, then this, and dont forget that, then finally get into this and this. After this, you'll be a good guitar player. Hey have you ever heard of elaboration? This is not 1 bit impressive or helpful in any way.
    I think this is a poor article , not very well thought out . All it seems to do is name all the techniques , with no advice on how to go about learning them. No offense personally though. btw, I think galloping is really fast picking of single string riffs, powerchords etc ( like tremelo picking ) often used in metal.
    I say one name... Angus Young.. When he started in AC/DC he didn\\\'t knew the name on the chord he was playing :p and the solos.. he plays what he thinks sounds the best
    there is a lesson on sweep picking at ug, I don't know about shredding, it isn't really a technique, it is just taking the scales you learned and playing them at hyper speed. listen to yngwie, (I think thats how you spell) I have no clue what galloping is though...maybe if tonyscar would have written an explanation for his pointers, we would no
    these are all helpful tips to learning how to play guitar, but if all else fails, you can always take lessons from someone who has been playing guitar or any instrument long enough to teach all you want and need to know
    Frigginjerk, what is galloping, shreading and sweeping? Cant you write a great lesson about it? Please man, you are the only one on this site who knows how to write good.....
    I think the best thing to do is buy a very expensive guitar like a brand new Les Paul or something cuz you're never gonna get good on a crappy one. Dont take any lessons, that's for wussies. just get a good tube amp and turn it all the way up with a lot of distortion, and a wah pedal. Just start hackin away at it. Everything will sound great! You will figure it out. If you don't then sell your gear on E-Bay for super cheap.
    theory does NOT prevent you from feeling the music... it allows a deeper understanding and appreciation of it. when you can identify the music, you will play better. the practice of theory improves your physical and mental skills. it allows for more diversity in music. dont ever say "*** theory". ever.
    I'd say this article is for the people who haven't bought their guitar yet. Or for the frustrated people. I'd say it would be a better story than information article though.
    lessons are great, but if all else fails I agree that patience is greatly needed.
    dammit, comp buggerd up, i had many other things justifying my outragous claims, please belive me!
    I like it. I've been playing guitar since around June this year, so maybe six months, I'm still not very good, but this was a useful article.
    Learn to finger pick, a lot of guitar players do this; but not many. ?you just contradicted yourself there... glad you're trying to help and everything though...
    what is galloping? and shreading? its good that you mentioned most techniques but it would be better if you explained them too
    dude the things u said are the same thigs thay say in a beginer guitar book pepole just go get a good lern to play guitar book
    ''one of the most greatest techniques to be invented'' -yea ull become a great guitars....what blows is that u still wont know basic grammar.....
    ya omanyen is kinda an idiot, you have 12 notes, all solos do use scales, all good bass lines should use scales, and if you don't know your scales and your lead does sound good, it is either a complete fluke, or you have a good ear for music, and since this is a beginners article, and beginners don't usually have a good ear for the instrunment they just picked up, i'm going to bet on it being a fluke
    omanyen: seriously dude, if that's your attitude, you'll never make it on your own. you can play cover songs all you want. but as soon as you are in a band trying to play your own stuff, someone's gonna tell you to play a lick in G and you're gonna say "**** G!!! G is boring! let's play some covers." and you're gonna get kicked out of the band.
    Its an allright article, but youre not really being specific...youre just saying this is good this is also good , do this first then the rest, learn everything.You should explain whaat youre writing abt so it helps ppl, rather than just tells them
    This is like reading a cheapass self-help book. lots of things to be done and having no clue how to go about it. I agree with most of ur points, but pls try to exemplify and expand your shooting in the bush...
    Forget "theory" - Try FACT- Look, don't make this into rocket science. You've only got 7 - COUNT EM- 7 - notes. Don't learn scales, scales are BORING. Try singing along to them, you can't. Learn songs, that's what you picked that axe up for in the 1st place.Have fun and play MUSIC.
    this is dumb, and not even near the best way to teach. also get your facts straight, eddie van halen did NOT invent finger tapping, it was invented by jazz guitarist. i can't believe they're just letting any sort of column on UG.