Learn How to Play the Guitar
Like The Pros
So you wanna play guitar? Well, join the club -- it's a large one.
Because you may as well face it: In the music world, guitars set the standard for cool (and we’re not just being
biased here). Since the 1950s, many of the greatest showmen in rock ’n’ roll, blues, and country have played the
Think of Chuck Berry doing his one-legged hop across the stage (the “duck walk”) while belting out “Johnny B.
Goode,” Jimi Hendrix wailing on his upside-down, right-handed (and sometimes flaming) Stratocaster, Bonnie Raitt
playing slide guitar, Garth Brooks with his acoustic guitar and flannel shirts, B.B. King’s authoritative bending
and expressive vibrato on his guitar “Lucille,” or George Benson’s mellow jazz guitar stylings. The list goes
Playing electric guitar can put you out in front of a band, where you’re free to roam, sing, and make eye contact
with your adoring fans. Playing acoustic guitar can make you the star of the vacation campfire singalong. And
playing any kind of guitar can bring out the music in your soul and become a valued lifetime hobby.
The following expert reports deliver everything the beginning to intermediate guitarist need: From buying a guitar
to tuning the guitar, to playing the guitar, to selecting a playing style, to caring for your guitar, we cover it
BASICS EXPERT REPORT SERIES
This series of reports provides information on some guitar basics that you need to know
before you can start playing. We help you understand what to call the various parts of the guitar, and what they
do. We tell you how to tune the guitar, both in reference to itself and to a fixed source — such as a tuning fork,
piano, or electronic tuner — so that you can be in tune with other instruments. And finally we cover the basic
skills you need to know to be a successful guitarist, such as how to read guitar tablature, how to pick and strum,
and how to produce a clean, clear, buzz-free tone.
TO PLAY EXPERT REPORT SERIES
All the reports in this series deal with playing the guitar, so “strap”
yourself in and get ready to rock'n'roll. You will learn the easiest way to start playing real music — with major
and minor chords. We go over how to play simple melodies by using single notes, and add a little bit of oomph with
some basic 7th chords.
Remember the old joke about the tourist who asked the New York beatnik, “How do you get to Carnegie Hall?” Answer:
“Practice, man, practice.” Well, you may not be headed for Carnegie Hall, but practicing the basics is still going
to be important if you want to become a good guitar player.
TO SOUND COOL EXPERT REPORT SERIES
These reports provide you with the techniques that you use in playing in
position, which not only makes you sound cool, but makes you look cool, too. We teach you about playing barre
chords, which refers to using one finger to lay across all the strings and then making chords in front of that
finger. And we cover some special techniques for creating particular guitar effects, all with pretty cool-sounding
names such as hammer-ons, bends, and slides.
MUSIC STYLES EXPERT REPORT SERIES
In this set of reports we focus on music styles or genres. Firt, the rock style
- playing lead by using the pentatonic minor scale, playing solos in a box, and other rock stylings. Next, blues -
showing you how to get your mojo working with lead boxes and special blues articulations. Then folk music -
specific picking patterns that give folk music its distinctive sound (throwing in some country finger-pickin’
techniques as well). Then, classical guitar, introducing you to techniques necessary to play Bach and Beethoven.
Lastly, jazz - jazz chords, rhythm playing, and soloing.
SELECTION AND CARE EXPERT REPORT SERIES
The focus of these reports is on finding the equipment that's right for you. We
help you select not only your first practice guitar, but also your second and third guitars (often more difficult
decisions than your first). When it comes to guitar accessories, we give you a primer on guitar amps, and goes over
the little extras you need for a well-rounded assortment of equipment.
Also included are several reports on how to care for your guitar. We cover the process of changing strings,
something you gotta know if you’re going to play the guitar for more than a month, and the basic maintenance that
can save you money at the guitar store and keep you playing well into the night.