Introduction To Guitar Effect Pedals – Achieve The Desired Sound Effects With the Right Pedals

Guitar effects pedals, also known as “stomp-boxes,” are yet another useful tool in the guitar player’s toolbox for tone shaping. They are foot-pedal boxes that provide sound effects for the guitar. The key to getting that guitar tone you strive for comes down to an effects unit of some sort, especially if you’re going for the kind of sound The Edge (David Howell Evans, the guitar player from U2) has. Many worship-music guitarists also use several effects pedals to achieve their lush soundscapes. It’s amazing how these pedals can make a single instrument sound so full. Other notable displays of … Read more

Top 10 Inspirational Jazz Guitarists of All Time

Jazz improvisation can seem pretty daunting at first glance: the countless scales, arpeggios, and use of flat keys, may seem like starting all over again. But in fact, it is really just an extension of what you already know! The hardest part is laying down the foundation which you likely already have. In this article, you’ll learn about the various jazz guitarists of different eras and jazz sub-genres. Each guitarists take a different approach to the guitar, but remain the same in the fact that it is all built on that foundation of basic improvisation. The role of jazz improvisation is … Read more

Guitar Edition: 5 Things I Wish I Could Tell My Younger Self

Here is a million dollar question that everyone gets asked once in awhile, “What would you tell your younger self if you could travel back in time?” To be honest, it’s not something I’ve really thought about before, but I suppose there would be quite a number of things I would tell my younger self. Just on the topic of music alone, there would probably be hundreds of tips and tricks I would tell myself to accelerate and enhance my musical abilities. Since such a time-machine does not exist, I guess the next best thing I can do is to … Read more

The Definitive Guide To Changing Guitar Strings

If you’re new to the guitar, changing your strings can seem like a complicated process. However, it’s a pretty straightforward task and, just like playing the guitar, it gets easier the more frequently you do it. Since so many of our students ask us how to change guitar strings, we’ve decided to provide you with a comprehensive guide to all things guitar string-related, including types of guitar strings, why & how to change guitar strings, how to tune your newly strung guitar and finally how to make your guitar strings last longer. Why Change Your Guitar Strings At All? As … Read more

Chord Changing Exercises: How to Smoothly Change Your Chords

Many beginning guitar players struggle to perform smooth and seamless chord changes. Without smooth transitions between chords, your rhythm guitar playing will sound choppy and stuttered. Chord changing stutters also cause problems when playing with other musicians because they throw off the rhythmic pulse. If you’re playing rhythm guitar with another musician, say a vocalist for example, the inability to play with a consistent tempo will make it very difficult for the vocalist to get comfortable and put on a good performance. Having a reliable rhythm section provides comfort to the musicians taking on lead roles.  So for those of … Read more

Top 5 Apps that Make You a Better Guitarist

Guitarists are constantly on the move with their instruments. To help you become a better guitarist on the go, we’ve handpicked 5 smartphone apps that will help you channel your inner Jimi Hendrix. Guitar Toolkit Agile Partners iOS (US$ 2.99) Credit: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/guitartoolkit-tuner-metronome-chords-scales/id284962368?mt=8   For iOS users, we argue that Guitar Toolkit is compulsory, for its myriad of relevant functions. First of all, it possesses an excellent guitar tuner. We’ve found its interface very clean and simple to use, while its accuracy is on point. When you pluck on a guitar string, the app displays which note is the closest, the … Read more

How To Read Guitar Chord Diagrams

One of the first skills that all guitarists learn is how to read a chord diagram. These diagrams are very helpful when it comes to showing chord shapes and their fingerings. Fortunately for us, it’s also a very easy skill to pick up and you’ll be reading chord diagrams like a pro by the end of this article! What Does a Chord Diagram Look Like? Most chord diagrams will look very similar to the following image: Before getting into what all those numbers, dots, and letters mean, let’s take a look at a blank diagram and break that down first: … Read more

5 Must-Know Fretting Techniques For Beginner Guitarists

Knowing how to properly fret a note is highly important to your guitar playing journey. Use the wrong technique and you’ll end up with sore hands, buzzing notes, and possibly an injury. The good news is that fretting a note is very easy! There are really only five things you have to take note of: proper finger placement, fingertip accuracy, thumb position, curvature of the fingers, and wrist position. In this article, I outline these five issues with images so you can check in with your technique. 1. Proper Finger Placement When you fret a note, keep your finger as … Read more

8 Effective and Fun Ways to Practice Scales

Playing scales serves as an important tool for musical expression; it is the vocabulary in the language of music. Different scales produce different sounds and, if used effectively, can evoke a vast range of emotional responses from listeners. Unfortunately, many people practice scales without a clear understanding of what they’re trying to accomplish. Practicing scales is important for several reasons, but if you don’t know those reasons, you might find it difficult to translate those hours of practice into something musical. Always begin your practice with clear and concise objectives, and why you want to accomplish these goals. There is … Read more

Using a pick, fingers or both?

At a glance… 1. Flatpicking vs fingerstyle 2. Technique 3. Tone 4. Using both styles A really common question that I get from beginners is, “Should I learn to play with a pick or my fingers?” Like many things in music, this is a matter of personal preference. One is not more difficult than the other; they’re just different styles of playing. In this article, I will explain the differences to help you make an informed decision. What is flatpicking and fingerstyle? Flatpicking requires the use of a plectrum, or more commonly known as a pick, which is a small … Read more