Guitar Lessons

Robert Cray Albert Collins Youtube

Sunday, April 19th, 2009 | Blues, Guitar Lessons, Jazz Guitar, Youtube | 1 Comment

Robert Cray and Albert Collins together, both are  exceptional blues players.  Very different in style, Albert plays a Fender Tele, what is unusual about his playing is he often uses a capo.  Albert Collins’s playing seems to have sweetened over the years, he has an extraordinary bite in his playing.  Robert Cray, the silky voiced bluesman achieved great commercial success in the eighties.  Robert would probably be the smoothest blues player getting around.  Robert first started playing because he liked the Beatles music.  He mixes the the brilliant blues of the past with the production quality of the present.

If you want to hear an exception album, have a listen to the Showdown album, it included a third great blues player Johnny Cougar.


Frank Gambale Youtube Lesson

Wednesday, March 11th, 2009 | Electric Guitar, Guitar Lessons, Youtube | 2 Comments

Here’s a lesson from Frank Gambale Guitar Lesson Tutorial using a slightly altered triad, it’s a 1 2 3 5 of the major scale.  He’s offering this as an option to extend guitar players playing a little to get out of the standard 1 35 arpeggios. He also plays some very nice guitar after the tutorial

Thanks Frank.  I wuill be posting more tutorials here from now  on


Blues Scales for Guitar

Thursday, November 13th, 2008 | Guitar Lessons, Guitar Scales | 1 Comment

Here are some essential blues scales for guitar.  I have made these avalable in the past at my other sites and but as those sites are dedicated to acoustic guitar the site visitors are different.

Blues Scales for Guitar

Blues Scales for Guitar

To download the quality  printable version click on the link essential_blues_scales_for_guitar


Robben Ford Blues Youtube

Monday, September 22nd, 2008 | Blues, Electric Guitar, Guitar Lessons | No Comments

Robben Ford is probably the guitarist that I have been most surprised with over the years.  When I first heard him in about 1979 he was a good solid player, at that point I had no idea he’d develop into the player that he has.  In the blues rock field he’s second to none.  If you’ve heard him do Talk to Your Daughter and Born Under a Bad Sign you’ll know what I’m talking about.   It wasn’t until about 10 years ago that I was asked to play one of his tunes in a band that it struck me how far he’d come as a player.’ His ability to control the dynamics of a tune and change gears instantly is what I find extraordinary.

This video also includes a great Tutorial on what Scales Robben Ford uses in a blues.

Tags: ,

How to be a Good Electric Guitar Player

Thursday, September 18th, 2008 | Electric Guitar, Guitar Lessons | 3 Comments

Like many guitar players I comfortably move between electric and acoustic guitar, I also swap from plectrum to fingerstyle without even giving it a second thought and will often play both in the one song.  This wasn’t always so and it took quite some years to get to the point where the transiton was seamless, or in a way thoughtless, in this case thoughtless means without thought, not careless.  

In the initial stages, as a rule most players want to be able to play just like the great or famous and not so great players and it takes quite some time to develop ones own musical voice, this means our own particular way of expressing through the guitar.  But there are many players that don’t develop their own musical voice but just rehash the work of others, to be honest with you I am not interested in that sort of guitar playin at all, and if that’s where you are at you’re probably at the wrong site.

Generally, if a person doesn’t undertake some sort of formal or semi formal lessons that are well structured to take a player through a step by step process, which is well thought out to cover all aspects of music, the player will be missing a lot of real musical pieces and much of what they do will be imitating riffs and solos and playing rhythm parts of songs that they like.  This is all very well but in the long run, it is an incomplete proceass and it will be a very long pathway to becoming a balanced guitar player musician who is equiped to play professionally.

The trouble with a lot of guitar players is they often only learn to play little bits of songs, does this sound familiar to you?  A bit of a solo here, a riff, a rhythm pattern, a couple of chords, a few scales or modes and lots of facial grimaces and other odd expressions.  When you look at the previous scenario and analyse it, you’ll see that is very, very common amongst guitar players, particularly electric players and it is a very fragmented approach.  Acoustic players will often play songs from end to end as they will sometimes sing as well, but this is not always the case.

I have an extremely simple solution to enable any guitar player to bring all the pieces together and become a good solid player who is capable of developing in a balanced way. Because I started playing 39 years ago and had formal lessons from very well respected guitar player / musicians, it gave me a great insight into what is required to develop wholistically as a player.  The training I had involved the standard (what a lot of people would consider boring stuff), this included reading dots (musical notation) , understanding keys, improvisation using scales and modes, chord substituion,  ear training and playing arrangements of tunes; the arrangements were complex by todays standards and were generally jazz tunes, or tunes with a truck load of chords in lots of different keys.  Although all the things I have mentioned are extremely valuable, and in the long term are essential elements, I’m confident beyond a doubt that the most important of these things was playing solo arrangements of tunes (not to be mistaken for solos in the middle of songs).  

And here’s why.  Simply, you are playing music, and this is the goal that needs to be kept in sight always, but the following is very important. When you play an arrangement of a song you generally play an intro, a good intro often hints at the song without playing the song itself, it will spell out where you are going. Learning to play good intros will help you develop an ear for coming in on time at the right place when you get the opportunity to play with other players.  A well designed intro is fantastic for working with other musicians because there’ll be no questions about where you are and where the song starts, this is essential; an audience, whether they are fully attentive or not will automatically, subconsciously make a decision on whether  the song is going to be ok or not as soon as it starts, if musicians are not together in an intro they’ll have to work that much harder to get the audience interested in the music; the audience will automatically tune out if it’s not right.

When you enter the next part of a song, generally the verse, it is very important to be able to play a strong melody, this doesn’t mean to be stiff in your playing but a good melody is alwys hummable and very MUSICAL.  I developed a strong sense of melody by consciously sitting down and working out dozens of vocal lines of songs (in my case I read the music dots) . The way you phrase a melody is what will define you as a player, knowing just when to pause and exactly how long to be silent for, how long to hold the note to the minutest degree ; also having the ability to slide or bend notes and to play around with the dynamics of the notes, this means the volume and intensity, making sure there is a variation.

With the chorus of the song the same principles apply as when playing the main melody of the verse.  What you will need to do is to initially is to learn to play the essential notes of the accompanying chords of the song, this does not need to be complex and in the early stages when you first learn a tune, you may like to just play the chord for just one beat whenever they change and use the melody note on top (the highest sounding note) of the chord, regardless, what is important is you get in the habit of playing melodies and chords together.  As time goes on you can be a little bit more inventive and play around with moving bass parts a little and playing additional passing chords.

Knowing exactly where you are with the chords at all times will enable you to start to improvise.  Initial improvisation when you are starting out may just be adding a few notes here and there to the melody and as you become more advanced you will be able to move further away from the melody and also subsitute some of the chords.  Learning a few blues and country scales will be very helpful in giving you some simple ways of adding interest to the improvisation without having to fry your brain with comolex modes, and in many cases you’ll find that using country scales are much more sensible than many of the other scales that could take you hours to learn but are really just major scales with fancy names because they start oln a different note than the key you are in.

OK, so where to start?

  1. Pick a simple song that you are very familiar with, just learn the melody, learn to hum it, if you think you can’t sing, hum it even softer :-)
  2. You may find that the melody is more suited to be played in another key on the guitar than the original one; if necessary play the melody starting on another note, make it easy for yourself so when you eventually add the chords you won’t have to do finger gymnastics to play the chords and melody together and then find yourself giving up in frustration.
  3. The next step is to add the chords, make sure it is a simple chord pattern, if need be, leave out a few chords to start with.  Often songs will still sound pretty right by dropping a few chords,  you will be able to add other chords and additional parts later on.
  4. Once you have gotten to the point where you can play the melody and chords together, start to work back through the song playing the melody and chords with a small variation.  Each time you play it through, alter it a little.
  5. When you are confortable with this, play the song through just using the chords and leave out the melody.  Train your ear to hear where the chords are changing, I suggest that practice in your head without the guitar and visualise changing chords in your mind.
  6. Next, play only the chords once exactly where they change, if a chord goes for a while and is repeated, just change it on the first beat of each bar.  
  7. Next play the chord followed by adding a little bit of guitar inprovisation, keep it simple, it often helps to hum what you hear in your head and then play it.
  8. After you have worked through the chords and improvise a few times, go back and play the melody and chords together again, as in step three and after you’ve done that a few times, return to the improvisation again.  Keep it reasonably loose, there’s no need to be in a hurry.
  9. At some point you’ll need to add a simple ending; endings should be obvious sounding.

If you apply the above technique to a number of tunes, you’ll find your playing will become very strong.  You should aim towards being able to play in a manner as if you were accompanying a singer and suddenly he singer fell off the stage, you will automatically be able to take over instantly playing the melody and chords as if it was meant to be.  You can always ring the hospital later to find out if the singer is ok.  :-)

    Tags: ,

    How to Change Guitar Strings Youtube

    Saturday, September 13th, 2008 | Guitar Lessons | No Comments

    I somehow found a very funny news item on youtube by, it’s never been my intentio to write or post about silly non guitar related stuff, but because these guys also did an article on how to cahnge guitar strings, I thought it only fitting that I also include their sill youtube news article as well. The funny one does include an a story about Oasis Noel Gallagher, and I’m not condoning this behaviour.

    And now for something more serious and guitaristic

    How to tune a guitar


    Stevie Ray Vaughan Youtube Guitar Lesson

    Wednesday, August 27th, 2008 | Guitar Lessons | No Comments

    Stevie Ray Vaughan playing a slow blues live was one of a handful of guitar moments that I will treasure for the rest of my life.  And if I could go back in time I probably would have broken the rules of the concert hall where I saw him play and stood at the very front of the stage to allow that moment to dig deeper into my memory.  But it’s always in hindsight and after a persons death that we think  of these things.

    We’re at least fortunate to be able to freeze time in a video relive the brilliance of Stevie Ray way after he’s gone.  This Guitar Lesson of Stevie Ray Vaughan on Youtube is a must foe every guitarist regardless of what standard you may play at.   There is also a short interesting interview about his life as well and a taste of his version of Superstition by Stevie Wonder

    Tags: ,


    BEST Guitar and Blog SITE Hosting

    All my sites are hosted at HOSTGATOR.
    For web hosting plans,
    Click the Image Above.
    Hostgator are professional,
    flexible, organized and have
    very good support and tutorials.
    Install a blog with a few clicks.

    RSS Acoustic Guitar Player

    • Tommy Emmanuel and Martin Taylor Acoustic Guitar
      Tommy Emmanuel and Martin Taylor Acoustic […]
    • Lightnin Hopkins – Mojo Hand
      Lightnin Hopkins Youtube video – Acoustic Guitar – Mojo Hand Tony Hogan […]
    • Lightnin Hopkins Blues Guitar Youtube
      Lightnin Hopkins doing an Acoustic Blues Guitar version of Baby Please Don’t Go For more Blues Guitar Check out T Bone Walker […]
    • Jon Gomm Youtube
      This is a very good contemporary acoustic guitar arrangement of the the Soul / Funk tune by Chaka Khan by an excellent guitar player by the name of Jon Gomm. It includes a number of techniques such as Tapping, Harmonics, Hammer Ons, and Pull Offs and at the same time is very musical To visit […]
    • Russ Barenberg – Acoustic Guitar Youtube
      Russ Barenberg playing beautiful acoustic guitar on the tune Drummers of England… a lesson in musicality For more beautiful guitar go to Russ Barenberg and Jerry Douglas For Russ’s website Russ Barenberg … and he has Skype lessons !!!!! […]

    RSS iHeartGuitar

    • INTERVIEW: Opeth’s Mikael Åkerfeldt
      Opeth unashamedly alienated some of their fan base with their 2011 album Heritage. While a large portion of their fans were drawn to the Swedesh masters for their progressive death metal leanings, Heritage was primarily inspired by 70s fusion in the style of John McLaughlin’s Mahavishnu Orchestra - and there wasn’t a single death-growl to be heard anywhere. […]
    • koRn – Hater
    • Introducing Black Lightning Gallery
      Are you a fan of great guitar music? Of course you are. Do you need some inspiration for the wall of your music space? Maybe a shrine to your favourite artists? Or just something cool to hang above the fireplace? Check out Black Lightning Gallery in Los Angeles. Founded by Rohan Ocean, Black Lightning Gallery […] […]
    • The Ultimate Guitar Pickup Guide
      So, what’s the deal with pickups, then? Check out this piece I wrote for Andertons which breaks it down for ya, from the basics to more advanced stuff like the difference between coil splitting and coil tapping. A snippet: “The simplest way to think of a pickup is “like a microphone for an electric guitar.” And […] […]
    • INTERVIEW: DragonForce’s Herman Li & Sam Totman
      The mighty DragonForce have always brought the epic energy, triumphant power-metal riffage, anthemic choruses and intense shred to their work, but what makes their new album Maximum Overload stand out a little from the rest of their catalog is their willingness to step outside of their established sound just far enough to keep it fresh. […] […]

    RSS Acoustic Guitarist

    • Voodoo Chile Acoustic Guitar Tutorial
      Here is a simple and sensible Youtube Video Tutorial of an acoustic version of Jimi Hendrix’s Voodoo Chile gratitude to the publisher   Tagged: voodoo chile acoustic guitar youtube […]
    • How to Improve Your Guitar Playing
      These So many guitar players want to improve their guitar playing but ignore some fundamental things.  Here are some tips that are easily missed by inexperienced players. Learn the notes on the fretboard Learn the sound / texture of chord … Continue reading → […]
    • Antoine Dufour
      Antoine Dufour – Acoustic Guitar  These Moments Hammer ons, pull offs , taps, harmonics open tuning and beauty. Tagged: antoine dufour, open tuning, tapping […]
    • Jam With Google Chrome
      This is an interesting concept and had to happen sooner or later, jamming with Google Chrome Google Chrome Jamming  I will go in and test it at some point soon when I come up for air. Haven’t been blogging for … Continue reading → […]
    • T Bone Walker Blues Guitar Youtube
      This is a wonderful Blues on semi-acoustic guitar with T Bone Walker and Shakey Jake on vocals for  more Blues check out Mississipi John Hurt Tony Hogan Tagged: T Bone Walker Blues Guitar […]
    Click here to watch The Conversion Blogging Video

    TAB and SheetMusic

    Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale