View Full Version : want to learn to play the guitar

20th July 2004, 04:00 PM
What do you think is the best way? Should i buy some books and learn from the base up, or should i just pick a couple songs and learn them? Anybody know of a good site for tabs?

I would like to learn to play Warren Zevon's "Keep me in Your Heart" (http://www.altcountrytab.com/modules.php?name=Content&pa=showpage&pid=4161)

20th July 2004, 04:38 PM
I think if you can you should find someone who is already a player see if they will help you...getting some books and learning chords, scales is not a bad idea either...I learned more from my friends than any other way...I don't consider myself that good but I kinda know my way around the guitar...I've written a few songs...I play and sing with friends occasionally...

20th July 2004, 05:11 PM
I agree. Alot of my friends were pretty good at it, and my uncle had gotten me a guitar, so I just started watching and paying attention to them. Just kind of learned from there, I don't know where I'd be without olga.net and the tab on it.

21st July 2004, 02:28 AM
I only have my dad's old Framus acoustic, although i have heard that it's easier to learn to play on an electric 1st? Is this true?

21st July 2004, 03:53 AM
I was about to say - sailorsgh is obviously the resident expert on this. ;)

21st July 2004, 04:07 AM
I've been playing for about 13 years. I started by learning some basic chords and scales, then I got lessons for about 6 months. I had the instructor teach me the basics of the guitar, we rarely worked on songs, instead we worked through William G Leavitt's book. While it's a bit tedious, the book is good for teaching proper technique and sight-reading. After the lessons, I just learned by playing around and seeing what sounded good. Eventually I was comfortable enough to play guitar and keep up with my friends, and I learned more from them than I did from lessons. But having a strong grounding in technique and theory really helped that out.

I would also suggest learning on the acoustic first (either classical or steel strung). The reason I say this is that when you learn on an electric, you tend to develop some nasty habits that you will have to unlearn if you switch to acoustic. I've also found that guitar techinques have a definite heirarchy to them. Everything you learn on a classical guitar is applicable to steel strung acoustics and electrics. Likewise, everything you learn on a steel strung acoustic is applicable on electric. Electric guitar techniques only pertain to the electric.

21st July 2004, 05:36 AM
Yeah that's what i was thinking i would do. Buy a couple of books and go through them, then grab some tabs and learn some songs. 6months....sure i can wait that long to learn the guitar(even though i'll probably never stop learning new stuff)

21st July 2004, 09:40 AM
I did take lessons and learned mostly about theory and chord construction...helped in the teachers studio...listened to music ( i was paying this guy to sit and listen to his stereo :p )
It is kinda true that electirc is a little easier on the fingers...but I would always recommend learning on a acoustic...you will build finger strength...and proper fretting...etc....
you can get away with bad technique on an electric...not so with a acoustic

22nd July 2004, 01:51 AM
i would think among linux users there would have been the suggestion of "check out the open source stuff before spending money." as we all know, often times the 'free' stuff is just as good if not better than the commercial stuff. check out places like e-tabs.org, which have online lessons. it will give you alot of the same info as a book. i will say though, nothing beats asking a friend or taking lessons from an experienced teacher.

one other thing, i made the mistake of learning on an electric, shortly after that i switched to acoustic and still have horrible habits that cause pain if i play for extended periods of time. i have worked and worked at curing them, they are better now but not fixed.

22nd July 2004, 02:39 AM
Thanks for the tips. Yeah i have come to learn that it is tons harder to play on a acoustic, you have to push alot harder I'll check out the e-tabs.org I might buy some books in addition to that site though, i dunno just somthing about having a paper copy brings me back to the old days :)

22nd July 2004, 04:17 AM
I have to say i learned everything on the acoustic for about 2 years then eventually baught myself an electric which ive been playing fo hmmm its been 7 or 8 years now id say. Once you master acoustic you'll be an excellent electric player. And then when you know everything do what i do start playing bass guitar and join a metal band :)

27th July 2004, 03:19 AM
bass?? no i don't think that's in my future :)

27th July 2004, 04:57 AM
The line I love hearing the most from someone else: "Anyone can play bass; it only has four strings!"

My reply? "Correct; anyone can play bass - very few can play it well..."

(39 years as a player - 17 years as a road musician - and retired before the road could kill me...)

27th July 2004, 10:51 AM
"Anyone can play bass; it only has four strings!"

thats a crock! I guess violin is just as easy :D...it were so easy there would be more bass players...something we could never find or depend on when I had my garage band...each bass player played with 2-3 bands...regardless of their talent...:p

29th July 2004, 11:29 AM
You got 'the crock' right - I think that's why I learned bass as a second instrument; guitar players were everywhere. My dad was a bass player and the Christmas I turned 14 had me play every second gig with his little combo. Man, I was the only kid I knew getting paid to play. It was great! And yes, I played in two other bands as well. It got REAL interesting when a double booking happened. Rock-n-roll lost and Herb Alpert won - right; it was Dad's gear...

29th July 2004, 05:35 PM
hey Herb Alpert is cool...even though my parents listened to it before me....:p
but rock and roll will never die!

30th July 2004, 05:47 PM
hey Herb Alpert is cool...even though my parents listened to it before me....:p
but rock and roll will never die! Two words...The Ventures! Okay, back to guitar...

I started learning classical music in the 4th grade (on tenor saxophone - go figure) & then started picking up guitar c. the tender age of 12-13. At first I tried with a cheap electric (and cheaper amp!), didn't like the sound and switched to acoustic, thank God. I would definitely agree with the other comments - if you start electric, you'll pick up 'way too many bad habits that are 'way too hard to break. Personally, I always found steel-string acoustics easier to play than classicals because of the narrower neck/fretboard (I have fairly short, stubby fingers). Also, I never had formal guitar lessons, or learned to read guitar music - I just listened, kept trying and eventually picked it up.

1st August 2004, 08:04 AM
enough about guitar... :)

everyone buy a bass and then go into debt like me and spend over 6,000 on an Ampeg stack...

God i owe the bank some money... And everyone wonders why i use Open Source Software :) :) :)

1st August 2004, 08:27 AM
Oh, man... Do I remember hauling around an Ampeg stack...

When I finally realized that it would be in my best interests to buy my own gear, my dad's friend offered to sell me his Ampeg SVT (about 9' tall, 5' wide, and as heavy as a '56 Buick). It was all cool and groovy - he delivered it, hauled it into our basement, and I happily thumped and banged on my nice new Fender Mustang (little guy; little bass). And that was fine until the first time we (my little band-buddies and I) tried to move it and take it to a 'show'. It wouldn't even fit in the car!!! I always wondered why Dad had that sardonic smile on his face when I bought it... It didn't take long to trade off the SVT on a B-15 Fliptop - and even that weighed more than 100 pounds.

Moral of the story: Little guys should not be bass-players...

But seriously, Thoreau, Mark and everyone else who made this point are right - start with acoustic and switch to electric later when you've learned to play 'correctly' (hey, don't flame me; read that 'play with good technique'). But don't cheap out on the acoustic,either. Get a half-decent one and have a reliable tech tweak it for you. I mean - good greif! - you live in Kalamazoo, ancestral home of Gibson guitars! It'll be a cinch to find something there!

1st August 2004, 11:30 AM
I mean - good greif! - you live in Kalamazoo, ancestral home of Gibson guitars! It'll be a cinch to find something there!

you are the 1st to say somthing. :)

I have my dad's old Framus, i'm not sure how old or when he got it though. Is that a good name?

1st August 2004, 03:00 PM
You have to understand that 'good' is a relative term. I have seen really cheap guitars that sound incredible. On the other hand, I've seen high-quality brand name guitars that sound terrible! Framus never was a high-end instrument, but I have played a few that sound great.

Framus guitars have quite a history that goes back to the end of the Second World War, and instruments were built in Germany from then until the mid-70's. If you want to have a read for yourself, follow this link: http://store.bluebookinc.com/downloads/BrowseCategory.asp?Product=acousticguitar&Heading=243

As for how old the guitar is, look for the main serial number inside or on the back of the headstock. There should be an additional two digits after this number; that will indicate the year the guitar was built.

Again, if the guitar sounds and plays (strings not 1/2" away from the fretboard or anything silly like that) good, use it! But that doesn't mean you can't poke around Kalamazoo and maybe score yourself a deal on something else!


(When I was still on the road with the band, we made a one-day pilgrimage from where we were playing in Detroit to the Gibson plant in Kalamazoo. This had to be only a few years before the plant closed in '84. It was worth the five hour round trip, believe me!)

3rd December 2008, 12:39 PM
It is actually a good thought to learn guitar. Although most of them have a belief that learning guitar is not so easy, but it isn't so. All that is required is a constant desire to excel in the things that we learn over a period of time. One has to keep practicing the lessons again and again until we get a grip over them. Well sometimes even trying out new things on our own would be appreciated, as it brings out our hidden talents. So free your mind of all the worries and catch up with learning the art of playing guitar.

5th December 2008, 12:26 AM
Let me go against the tide on the electric VS acoustic debate.
I'm a novice player and I mostly suck, that said I first picked up a guitar about one year ago. A friend of mine lent me a lousy steal string acoustic which he had around gaining dust. That thing was impossible to play, as a beginner try to make a F on an acoustic and you can die of pain and frustration. This last summer I got another friend to lend me his Epiphone Les Paul, it was SO easy compared with the acoustic. The low action makes it really easy to play, you'll still harm your fingers though. This makes you much more motivated to play compared with an acoustic.
Off course that with an electric and a little gain you can sound cool with lousy technique, but an electric doesn't necessarily means bad habits, you can increase your "suckage" level by playing unplugged and having a teacher which I highly recommend.
A good free (as in free beer) resource for beginners is http://www.justinguitar.com/

5th December 2008, 12:52 AM

Ok. It looks like we missed a spammer post, and this thread is old enough to have a grey beard. (Kinda like ZZ Top) Whereas the post and advice is appreciated, let's give this one a decent burial, and I'll snap the G string on that machinehead who posted just above yours. <..:p..>