Beginner Guitar Lessons Pt. 1 - Getting To Know Your Guitar | Lauren Bateman | Skillshare

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Beginner Guitar Lessons Pt. 1 - Getting To Know Your Guitar

teacher avatar Lauren Bateman, Helping students have fun with guitar.

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

8 Lessons (53m)
    • 1. Intro To Beginner Guitar Basics

      1:22
    • 2. Essential Guitar Accessories

      5:42
    • 3. How To Hold Your Guitar For The Most Comfort

      7:34
    • 4. How To Tune Your Guitar So You Always Sound Good

      9:41
    • 5. How To Hold Your Guitar Pick & Pick Recommendations

      11:45
    • 6. How To Read Guitar TAB

      7:26
    • 7. The Musical Alphabet

      3:58
    • 8. Preventing Wrist Tension & Pain

      5:11
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About This Class

About This Class

Are you an absolute beginner interested in learning how to have fun with your guitar? Then you've come to the right place. This lesson series is based on the absolute basics you need to know when you get started with learning the guitar. If you've never played guitar before and would like to learn, this lesson series is perfect for you. 

What will you learn in this lesson?

  • How to hold the guitar for the most comfort
  • How to hold a guitar pick and pick recommendations for beginners
  • How to read guitar tab - the key to playing music faster
  • How to tune your guitar so that you always sound good
  • How to properly use your guitar strap to take pressure off your write
  • The pros and cons of electric and acoustic guitars
  • The musical alphabet
  • And a few other cool tips for absolute beginner guitarists

My teaching style is plain and simple. No technical mumbo jumbo and no bogging you down with tricky music theory concepts that you don't need in the beginning. I am not a university trained musician, so my teaching style if a little different. I focus on having fun with your guitar as soon as possible. 

But before we do that, we need to know the basics!

I hope you will learn a lot from my Beginner Guitar Series here on Skillshare.  

What Students Say About Lauren:

“I’ve learned more in 4 months with [Lauren] than I have in 2 years with in person instruction.” — Joanne Inzinna

“I started the course about four months ago and cannot get over how far I have come in so short a period of time. I’ve gone from knowing absolutely nothing to being able to play “Country Roads,” “Horse With No Name,” and “Eleanor Rigby.”— Daryl Holmes

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Lauren Bateman

Helping students have fun with guitar.

Teacher

As a childhood cancer survivor, Lauren Bateman knows the importance of living in the moment. That is why at the age of 27, Lauren quit her 'cushy' job as a research scientist to pursue a career in music.

Boy has that decision changed her life forever.

While Lauren now has a highly successful Guitar Teaching YouTube Channel, she Lauren started out much like you. She wanted to learn to play guitar, but, because she wasted her piano lessons as a kid, her parents weren’t going to shell out money to get her guitar lessons. In fact, when Lauren was 16, her very own mother told her sister not to buy Lauren a guitar because she would waste it.

I’m sure you’re glad that that did not happen!

Instead, Lauren decided she was going to teach herself how t... See full profile

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Transcripts

1. Intro To Beginner Guitar Basics: Hey, guitar, enthusiasm and skill share members. In this little mini series, we're gonna be going over the absolute basics of getting started with the guitar. So this course is great for absolute beginners that have no experience with a guitar. Or maybe you just got started and you wanna make sure that you're doing things correctly. Essentially what we'll be going over, how to hold the guitar, how to set up your guitar strap correctly so that you can take some of the pressure off your risks so that you don't have risk tension. We're gonna be going over are the names of the strings. How to get your guitar in tune so that you always sound good. Reviewing simple things like the musical alphabet as well as how to read guitar tab, which I find is an easier way to go about learning music than working with tedious sight-reading. So this little mini series beginning, end's gonna take you about an hour to go through. But there's a lot of great information in here, like, you know, how to hold your pick. I'll make some suggestions on different types of picks that you might want to consider as a beginner player or if you're playing an electric guitar versus an acoustic guitar, what are the pluses and minuses of each sum will be going through all that information in this little mini series. So let's get started. I'll see you guys in the next lesson video. 2. Essential Guitar Accessories: All right, what we're going to talk about in this video is some essential accessories that you might want to purchase for your guitar if you don't have them yet. The first successor we're gonna talk about is a clip on tuner. Now, you can get a tuner in your phone. Alright, you can definitely do that. But the thing with these clip on tuners, so for me, I live in the city and sometimes there's a lot of noise outside or maybe you're at home practicing and someone is talking in the room, a phone will pick that stuff up. This will not. So I think you'll get a much more accurate reading as eclipse on the headstock. And there's a little LED screen and it just tells you what notes to tune the guitar. And we'll go over that in our guitar tuning video. The next we're going to talk about is guitar pick. Alright, this course uses the guitar pick a lot, but do have another mini course in the stage. Two items where I go over finger picking exclusively, but we'll talk about it a little bit in this course. But the majority of the course is going to require you using a pick. And we'll wanna do it both ways. But I would definitely get a pick that you're comfortable with. And again, we're going to have another video down the road where I talk about different types of guitar picks and how to hold your pick. Another nifty little accessory and you can get this as one that most people don't have that they need to order on this called a Kaiser Cato. Cato. Kaiser is the brand and all it is is a clamp. So it works like a clamp that you can put on the guitar. And this is an amazing tool for beginners and for teachers like myself, because bo actually allows us to play more songs as a teacher, it allows me to make songs easier for you. So if you go to my website, learn Bateman.com, and there's the song section in the beginner guitar songs. Some of those songs use a keto. So a kapo allows a beginner to have access to more songs without necessarily needing to know difficult bar chords just yet. And again, I do have a course on power cords and bar chords. I don't consider bar chords a beginner item because they do require a lot of strength. So I recommend doing that at a more intermediate stage once you get comfortable with all the other chords and some strumming. Another great accessory I'm actually wearing it. It is my strap. Alright, this is the probability one accessory that most people forget to grab. And it's very important because it holds the guitar in place. Listen, I'm not worried about my guitar falling on the ground. And I'll show you later when we get into how to hold your guitar, why the strap is actually important and providing you with a very consistent playing experience, whether you're sitting down or standing up. And I just think it makes it more comfortable. And if you're an older player, like I mentioned before, with the, the, you know, the electric guitars and then being heavy. So if you have shoulder issues, I would get a guitar that maybe has a little bit more padding in the shoulder area. This is a very wide guitar, so it distributes the weight more thin guitar straps will tend to cut into your shoulder more Sophie and get something wider. You don't have to get something expensive like this. This is this is like a hole made someone made this for me. Leather strap. It's very soft. It's very comfortable. I love it. But if you can't afford a few $100 for a guitar strap, don't go by one. You can get nice ones on Amazon that are reasonably priced. But like I said, if you do sometimes chef suffer from like a little bit of shoulder pain, gets something with a little bit more padding and that should help you out. Final accessory, I'm going to go over something that you can easily download on your phone. It's called a metronome and a metronome solidus. It's a timekeeper. It just clicks in beeps or whatever your app is doing. I have an Android phone and my app is called metronome beats. And it's a very simple app to use, but this is going to be key to us keeping track of your progress. So all it does is track how fast you're going, but it also helps you work on your timing in your rhythm. But again, like I said, the most important part is it's your scorecard of how well you're doing. Also the scorecard, so you can see where you started maybe three weeks ago versus today, because every guitar players going to hit a plateau at some point. And it's nice to look back and see those progress points. And this is another accessory that a lot of my students tend to avoid. Do not avoid the metronome. I recommend using it right from the get-go. Usually what happens is a lot of students, they hit that plateau point and I ask them if they're using their metronome and they're not and they get the metronome and then they start making progress again. So get a metronome app. Like I said, I have an Android metronome beats. I'm sure there's something very similar on an iPhone that you can get. So those are the essential guitar accessories that you'll need. If you have an electric guitar, you'll, you don't necessarily need a cable and an AMP right away. If you have good hearing, you'll be able to hear it. But you might want to consider getting a small practice AMP and a quarter inch cable if you want to amplify your guitar. 3. How To Hold Your Guitar For The Most Comfort: Alright, here we go. Now we're getting to start getting into the good stuff. How do I hold my guitar? So there's a couple of different ways you can hold your guitar. I gotta show you the way I like to do it. And then there's a classical way which the classical aced technically better for you if you're having a lot of wrist issues. So I will show you that one towards the end. So you'll notice that the guitar has, all of these guitars have swoops in that little. They have hips. Ok. It's why I think people refer to guitars as female because they've got these our last figures. Okay. So the habit on both the top and the bottom. So what you're going to do, this is the way I like to hold the guitar. Is you take your thigh and you put your thigh right in that little bump. Alright, so now your guitar sits on your thigh. Okay. So if I stand up on one leg just to show you, it would be like this. Okay, that's how my guitar would be sitting on that hip. Now this is where my guitar strap comes in handy because I can let go of the guitar in, it'll stay in place. But what the guitars strap is also going to help us do. It's going to help us try and keep the neck of the guitar pointing up. We never want the guitar to dip like this. It puts a lot of pressure and strain on your wrist. And again, that's why the guitar strap is important because it's going to keep your guitar from pointing down like that. It'll keep your neck pointing up. You see it's not extreme like that. It is in a more classical position than I will show you. But essentially what's happening at my guitar now, if I go to the side, as you can see, my guitar is straight up and down. This is what a lot of beginners do. They play the guitar like this at an angle? And I know it makes it easier to see the strings. And we're going to have exercises. I have exercises to help you see the strings. But what this does is it changes the angle at which your fingers hit the strings. So you're going to get a lot more of this. So as soon as you can straighten out this guitar and you'll be able to play your chords much clearer. Ok, so that's a big issue for a lot of beginner guitar players. So keep that in mind if you're hearing a lot of that, it could be the angle of the guitar. So that takes care of our strumming hand where the body of the guitar is. Let's talk about our fretting him. How are we going to hold the guitar? Same with an electric, Same with an acoustic. I tell people put your hand down by your side and lift at the elbow, lift your hand to the fret board and just gently wrap your fingers around the fretboard. It's almost like you're gonna go hold a cup of coffee but don't squeeze all the way. So rest your hand lifted up to the guitar. It's okay. And you can see my fingers wrap around like this, the fretboard. So that's how we're going to hold the guitar with our fretting hand. Okay, so that's the two positions. We have. The thigh. So if you're a righty, it will be your right thigh. If you're a lefty, it'll be your left thigh is going to go into the hump on the bottom of the guitar. And the right hand, your struggle left-hand, your strumming hand is just going to wrap over the top of the guitar. And if you have an acoustic, you've kind of got a platform. It's, I find it much easier to rest my arm on an acoustic guitar versus an electric. I played acoustic exclusively for years and when I went to an electric, especially since mine are so thin bodied, It was very difficult. It was well, not difficult. It was very awkward transition for me. But the same thing with an acoustic. You're just gonna wrap your hand, your arm over, your elbow kinda rests on this this point. And I think what my electric my elbow ends up back here a little bit more because it's so thin, but you'll find a comfortable point and your strumming hand is going to end up somewhere over the sound hole in this area. Okay. So and then again, your left hand is the one curling around, is going to play the strings and make the noise. And we'll work on how we're gonna get these two hands working together. So the other precision I'm going to show you is going to be the Classical Style position. So do we achieve the Classical Style? You can see what I do at my guitar lick my guitar neck. Now it's really pointing way up. This is a much healthier way to play the guitar. It takes a lot of tension off your wrist. So if you're doing chord changes and you're feeling a lot of pain in your risks. This is one way to help alleviate that a little bit. It's a big adjustment. And even when you stand up, you can play with your guitar standing up this way. But the more up the neck points, the more or the less tension there is on the wrist. And all you do. So you take that big hump down here and you put it right between your legs. So basically my guitar is sitting here. Okay. So you're basically straddling your legs on either side of this bulge of the guitar. And the left-hand doesn't really do anything different. The right-hand, it's just, you know, you end up further back on the guitar as opposed to up here. So, but again, like I said, this is more ergonomically correct for your wrist. So if you're experiencing pain, you can play like this. I also find playing my electrics like this a little bit more comfortable for me because like I said, my electrics are very thin like for acoustic For me, this is so wide it's uncomfortable, which is why I like playing my acoustic like this. But the electric eye will tend to play a little bit more in a classical position, sometimes depending on what I'm doing. And this again, let's talk about the guitar strap. So you'll see I have my guitar strap. And what this does when you're holding the guitar, this keeps the guitar in the same position. Whether you are sitting down or whether you're standing up. So you'll know your guitar strap is correct if your guitar doesn't move. So we don't want our guitar strap so long that the guitars hanging down here watch. When I get up and down, just watched the guitar, I'm gonna take my hands off of it. See I stand up, it doesn't drop. See I sit down, it doesn't lift up. You see that? That's how you know, your guitar is in the right position. Because this way, if I want to practice sitting down or standing up, guess what? My guitar doesn't move. So now, even though you're practicing sitting down, it won't be that big of a transition if you want to sit up. So that is the benefit of having this guitar strap. So that's another reason that's great. It will also help take pressure off this wrist. Because a lot of people, when they don't have the guitar strap, they tend to want to support the neck of the guitar by either pushing down or pushing up. So it'll take tension off your wrist as well. So, so many great benefits for this guitar strap. Make sure you get one right away. All right, so that's all I got for holding the guitar. I'll see you guys in the next video. 4. How To Tune Your Guitar So You Always Sound Good: In this video, what we're going to go over is how to use this clip on guitar tuner. If you have a built-in guitar tuner like I have a my guitar, it works very much the same. We'll put a little diagram up here so that you can see and essentially what it is is there's just a needle and the needle goes back and forth like this. Okay. Back and forth. And we want to get that needle so that is straight up and down. Now these start tuners are color-coded. The one on my guitar is grayscale. But this one, you'll know if you're on the right note because there's a green line in the middle. And I believe if you're too high, it's red and you're too low, it's yellow or vice versa, or I'd have to look. So we're gonna do, is I'm going to go in for close up to show you how to use this. But before we do that, let's talk about our tuning pegs. So the tuning pegs are you either have a set of three on the top and a set of three on the bottom. That's what this guitar and this acoustic out or like this strat, you're going to have all six on the same side. So just remember if you have to on opposite sides, that if one way is to cut up here, it might be counterclockwise to tighten. And when you go to the other side, it's counterclockwise to loosen. So just pay attention to that. And I always tell students don't get Nc these, you can go slow, slow and steady. I mean, don't go you don't have to like micro slow, but don't like yank on them because especially on these bottom strings, if you go too far, you will snap the string. So a tip when you're tuning your guitar. And the best thing up here is to start with these fixed strings because you're less likely to break one of these is to listen and hear the pitch going down. And then the pitch is going to come up. And then I'll do it again here. It's gonna go down and come up and be able to hear that right away because your ears and developed yet to the guitar. But I always tell students, if you think you've gone too far, always loosen the string. Don't keep tightening it, loosen it, and then come back up and that's the best way to do it. It'll probably keep you from breaking a lot of strings, but listen, you're probably going to break one or two strings tuning your guitar. It happens. I've actually done it after he, I was, I felt so embarrassed. I was changing a student's guitar strings. And I snap the high E string because I wasn't paying attention. I was going too fast and I snapped it on him. So I had a biofilm, another set of strings. So even I can do it. So just go slow, go steady. And the key is to pluck the string. You can use a pick or you can use your thumb and let the string ring give time for the sensor to pick up the vibration because that's what these clipboards, they go based on the vibration of the guitar. So just go slow. Give it time to let the nose ring and you can adjust as you're going. So what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna put my guitar out of tune because there's, doesn't matter how good you are of your returns out of tune, you're going to stink. So I'm gonna put it out of tune so that I can show you how to tune it. So this way you always sound your best. So I'll see you on close-up. Real quick, before we go in for our close up, I just want to talk about the actual strings themselves and what we're going to be tuning the strings too. So all guitars, or at least the ones I've shown, you have six strings that are 12-string guitars and 78 string, but the ones I'm working on in this course only have six strings. And there's a couple ways you can remember. It can either remember from the bottom, which is this thin string on the bottom, Easter bunnies get donuts at Easter. So it's E, B, G, D, a, E. Or as my adults like to joke, Easter bunnies get drunk at Easter. You can make up your own. One way to help you remember another common one is starting on the thick string on the top is Eddie eight, dynamite. Good, by headings. So E, a, D, G, B. So you're probably hearing there's two E strings. There's E up here and E on the bottom. They're the they're the same letter. They're the same name, but they're different pitch. It's what we call an octave. So one's lower, in one's higher. So if you had a piano, there's multiple octaves, but just know an octave as the ones low ones, HIV, but it's the same note. Hello, hi east. That's why this is often referred to as your high E-string. So when we tune our guitar, when I go into the Coase up, we're going to want to tune the top streamed, ie, the fifth string to a, the fourth string to D, the third string to G, the second string to be, and the first string to. Alright, so those will be our, our strings in our numbers, strings sixes, E string five as a string, four is d, three is G, string B, and string one is the high E string. So let's go in for that close up now so that I can show you how to get the guitar into. All right, so here we are. You're going to hear Mike, if I'm playing a perfect chord and it sounds like crap. So just goes to show you improves to you that even if you're a good guitar player, your sound like crap. If you're guitars out of tune. So what we need to do is we're going to tune the top string, and that's supposed to be an E. So what we're going to do is turn our tuning peg. And you'll notice here just before I go, let me go back here. That little tic-tac-toe sign. There's a little Tic Tac Toe. We don't want those. That's called the sharp sign. Okay. There's Tic Tac toes and there's little bees. We don't want those, we just want the letter. So Washington, I go to E, there's not gonna be any symbol after it. Okay. So I went too far. So really come back right into the middle and Sam just going really slow. Perfect. So I got a green line in the middle which tells me we're good to go. The next string is supposed to be a not too bad in turn that one hard enough apparently. So we're just gonna slowly tap the string until we get to perfect. The S1 is supposed to be d And I have C-sharp to it's too low because C comes before d in the musical alphabet. So we're going to keep going. And there we go. Now I'm going to over go on this. There's that tic tac toe. If you tune to this, your guitar is still going to be out of tune. So you wanna make sure there's no symbol after the letter, just the letter. Alright, next one, F sharp, this is supposed to be g, so it's 20. I need to go higher. Kc. Erica. Oop, I get two strings I want next string is going to be, be perfect. Boss one is E. And that's a note as I keep hitting other strange try to only get one string or it's going to throw the tuner off. Maybe you'd say here I can talk to you and it's not affecting the tuner. I can't do this with my phone. And now play that G chord again. Much better. So that said hopefully now you have your guitar and it's sounding nice in its sounding in tune. And we'll be able to move forward and play some great things. So remember if something sounding a little off could be that your guitar is just a little bit out of tune. These guitars. If you go outside and it's hot and you are inside and it was cold. Guitars are just would they will fluctuate with the weather in the humidity. So they do the AUTO-TUNE pretty easily if they're moving between temperature gradients. But for the most part, I mean, if you're in this room and I I2 my guitar and I put it on a stand. If it sits there and the temperature is in fluctuating a lot, it should stay in tune. But don't be surprised if you tune your guitar, you put it in the case. You go outside to the cold car and then you come back into a warm room, it will definitely go AUTO-TUNE at that point. It's just wood, but if you keep it in a consistent temperature, it will stay pretty much in tune for awhile. But as you play another note, these strings, they're elastic, they're flexible. So as you play, things can go out of tune. So just make sure to check your tuning every time you sit down to practice. And this is a great skill in itself. Just practicing how to tune your guitar might take you a few minutes to tune your guitar for the first time, but eventually you'll be able to do it in under a minute. You'll get so good at it. So another thing to practice. So there we go, that's how to tune your guitar so that you always sound good. I'll see you guys in another lesson. 5. How To Hold Your Guitar Pick & Pick Recommendations: Alright, so this is one of my favorite things to cover, which is how to hold your guitar pick. But not only that, what guitar pick might be best for you if you're an absolute beginner, if you're playing an acoustic or if you're playing an electric, there's a variety of different picks. So we're gonna go over that in this video. Alright, So in my hand I have one of my favorite guitar picks that I like to play with. My favorite brand is the Dunlop toward TTX picks. I'll put a picture up here so that you guys can see it on close up. I will go in for a close-up on this, but I'm just going to describe the process before I go in for a closeup. And you'll see from this picture here, and hopefully you can see it in my hand. The pic, the guitar pick, is a teardrop shape. So the top part of the guitar, of the PEC is wide and then it comes down to more of a point towards the bottom. The point those into the guitar. Okay, so you're gonna, it'll be perpendicular, pointing in towards you. Now, the fat part of the PEC is where our thumb is going to go. So if I'm holding the pick straight up and down with the point pointing down, I'm gonna take my thumb and it will be your right hand if you're a righty, your left hand if you're a lefty and you're gonna put the thumb across the back of the pick. And you're gonna take your index finger and you're going to point it so that it's pointing down the pic. Okay, some people, particularly when I play electric, I will sometimes curl around that knuckle more. Because with guitar picking electric guitar down the road, when I get into lead guitar playing, there's things you're gonna wanna do to mute strings. But in general, the easiest way to do it is thumb across the back. Index finger points down, there's a little bit of a curve, okay? And that's how we're going to hold the guitar pick, okay, just like that's like almost just squeezing the pick. You will probably see me sometimes because I developed the very bad habit. Because remember I said I was self-taught musician of holding my guitar pick with my second finger and it's just something, it's a muscle memory that I have. So if I'm telling you to hold it with the first finger, sometimes I will hold it with both fingers. And it's just like a bad habit that I have from years of doing it the wrong way. My guitar teacher tried to teach me out of it. So I alternate My picking hand a lot. So if you see me use my second finger, don't yell at me that I told you it was the wrong way. It's just my bet my old bad habit coming in. The key is as long as it's comfortable for you, do, do what's comfortable if you want to use it. But I recommend using the first finger because especially when we go to, if you're gonna go down the road and do electric guitar playing and playing guitar solos and lead playing. It's gonna be much easier with the first finger. But sometimes when I'm strumming, if I'm doing a lot of really aggressive, really aggressive strumming, I want to hold on to that pic with two fingers so that it doesn't fly out of my hand, which is a common problem. I'll guitar students, particularly in the beginning have. So I'm gonna go for a close up so that I can show you guys the guitar pick and how it looks on the close-up. Alright, so this is my Dunlop tort texts pick. And you'll see the fat part up the top, the point, it's pointing down. We're going to take the thumb flat across the back. The pointer finger is going to come down the pick. So I'm holding it kinda like this. And c you can see there's a little bend in my knuckle. Like I said, if you find it more comfortable to fully grab the pick like this, you might wanna do that. Alright, depends on what's more comfortable for you. I tend with my acoustic guitar to hold the pick like this. And depending on what I'm doing, sometimes I hold it like this. And sometimes I have the bad habit of holding it like this, but it's comfortable for me. And when you get into doing a lot of strumming later, you might find that extra support helpful to. So once again, the thumb is gonna go on the fat part of the PEC across. Okay. You can see where the thumb is on the back of that pick. The first fingers just gonna curl around the front a little bit. And that's how we're going to hold the guitar pick. So now what I wanna do is talk about some different types of guitar picks that you might use. So I'm going to come in a little bit closer to show you guys. Okay, so the first picks I want to talk about, I'm just gonna go through the Dunlop cortex picks and the different sizes and options. So there is the red and the orange pick, and they are 0.50.60 millimeters. These ones, I recommend to beginners because they're very flexible, they're very soft, they have a lot of give. And for beginners, you tend to have very, very tight hands and wrists, so it can make your strumming sounds really harsh. So I awesome. Recommend going with thin picks for beginners, especially if you're on an acoustic guitar. The downside of a thin pick is that you get a lot more pic noise. But I think sometimes that sounds better than digging into your guitar strings and having them pop up all over the place. So 0.50.60, the red and orange. Dumb luck toward txt. That's a recommendation for beginners. The ones that I, these are my two favorites that I use all the time for acoustic guitar. 0.77.88.88 is my favorite. It's also funny that green is my favorite colors. So maybe that's why I like them better. But I will alternate between these two. If I am doing a song that's very aggressive, strumming lies. I will not use this one. I will opt for the slightly lighter pick because sometimes having a pic that's too thick When you're strumming a lot very fast, very aggressively, you increase the risk of the pig flying out of your hand. So that's why I sometimes go down to this point 77. But if you're an acoustic guitar player, these are medium picks. I recommend these ones for acoustic guitar players. If the Dunlop tore texts, there, they're medium-sized picks. Alright, last two for this particular set, like that, they're like the colors of the rainbow and the blue and purple. These are one millimeter and 1.44 millimeters. These are great for electric guitar. They're very rigid, particularly if you wanna do lead guitar playing. It keeps that pick right around your thumb. Thicker picks tend to be better for electric guitar, but not so good for strumming. So that's why acoustic, If you're gonna do more strumming, go a little bit more in the middle. So those are my recommendations. There. Now, the other thing about guitar picks, there's so many, it's really a personal preference. So I would recommend going Dunlop. Yeah, I love dumb luck pics, I've used them, I've used other pics, but I've really settled on these pics. And they're just, it's just a great company. So I would recommend them wholeheartedly. They have what are called pick packs, where you can buy a dozen pics of like a bunch of medium picks. And some of the topics I'm going to show you came from those pig packs. And it'll give you a variety because I always tell people, you might like, for example, this is a, this is a nylon pick. It's very smooth. Those tort tax, they're a little course, so they grip a little bit better, but this is a very smooth feel to it. And this is a medium pick. And you might, might, might like the feel of that better. I don't, so I don't use it, but maybe you do and it will come in one of those pick back so that you can try it. Another one just to show you more examples. And I have some different shapes that I'm going to show you two that I use for electric sometimes. This is the Dunlop alt-text and I have one that's really thin. It's a different texture. And then this one that's really thick, this is a 2 millimeter and this one kinda has a rounded edge to it as opposed to those Dunlop pick. So if your electric guitar player, you might like that. I don't know, I don't particularly like it. But you might, which is why I recommend those pick packs. You won't get one of these. This is actually a would pick. I don't know if I can zoom in. I'll put it in front of my face. Maybe it'll pick it up if it's in front of my face. But this is made of wood and it has a different sound. You can even get picks made out of stone too. And this is the great thing. Experiment, find out what you love because everything sounds different. There's so much customization in guitar. We also have what I call a jazz three pick, OK. They're very tiny. So to give you a comparison, here's a Dunlop cortex with a Dunlop tort TTX jazz three, the small jazz three. And see if I can get this to zoom in. There you go. So you can see there's a difference in size, something, get it on the PEC. Trying to get my camera to focus where you guys So it doesn't want to, but you can almost see there's a, there's a gap. Alright, there's a difference. A lot of electric guitar players, particularly jazz players, whether Carl JESS3, use these, it's a very pointed tip. That tip is very pointed compared to this Dunlop tore TX. My favorite I will show you is the Dunlop toward texts chest. So these are my two go-to picks, the 0.88. All it is, it's the same exact guitar pick. This one's just point dear. Like the pointy or one for electric guitar. I didn't always use this. I actually just started using this within the last year because it was one in one of those Dunlop pick packs. I did a tutorial on YouTube about Dunlop pick packs and I said, well, I'm gonna open this and see what's in there. This pick was in there. And it changed my mind about what electric guitar pick I use after 20 years of playing. So that's why I'm saying experiment with these different picks, find out what you love. Because it might change. You don't know, you gotta use things to find out what you like. This is another great guitar pick. And probably one of the last ones I'm going to show you. This is what we call the max grip. And I don't know if you can see it. I'll see if I can get it to zoom in. There is a texture on this. It is super Griffey. So for those of you who find the guitar pick falls onto your handle out, let me see if I needed to focus on that. Maybe you can see it. If not, I'll just throw some diagrams up here so that you guys can see the examples of these pics. But this is a very repeat, very gripping pick. So if you're finding that guitar pick is flying out of your hands and it comes in various thicknesses. This might be a good option for you if you're a beginner. So there go, those are a bunch of different varieties and recommendations for guitar picks. Like I said, if you're a beginner, maybe a max grip that's a little bit thinner. If you're been playing a little bit in your wrist is relaxing and you play acoustic, you might wanna go to a medium thickness pick. And if you're an electric guitar player, those thicker picks, particularly the ones with the point dear tips. You might like goes, I don't know, go check out the Dunlop pick packs. They have electric packs, they have acoustic packs, they have all different thickness packs. So I would recommend maybe getting the acoustic and the electric pack and you'll get a good variety of a bunch of different topics that you can try for your guitars. So find out where it works for best for you. And I'll see you in the next lesson. 6. How To Read Guitar TAB: A guitar and disease. Welcome back. In this lesson video, we're gonna be going over how to read guitar tablature for the course. Now, in music, there's a couple different ways to read music. There's what we have, what's called standard notation, which is how I learned how to read the piano. And then we have tablature, which is later how I learned to read the guitar. Now, there's a lot of purists out there and a lot of university trained teachers who insist on having students read sight, read music, individual notes. And it's great because it makes the language really universal. Because on piano, you have what's called a staff. And then on guitar you would be reading the same staff. So it kind of transverse things. But I found for students at slowed down their progress a lot and it may learn in learning the guitar, not as fun. Now, we will focus on reading, sight, reading music, but we're gonna do it for rhythm because I believe that's very important. I learnt that skill when I took drum lessons many years ago. So yes, I can also play the drums. But that made me a much better guitar player and a much better rhythm player, learning how to sight read music. So I think that's an invaluable skill. So we will be doing that in this course, but we're not going to be sight reading individual notes or melody. I honestly that's not my strength. I really stink at sight reading music. Remember, I'm not a university trained musician, but I can do a lot of things that my guitar without sight reading individual notes. So we're going to focus on tablature, which is a coordinate system. And I find, especially for adults, it's a much faster way for you to pick up music and start having fun with the guitar. So what we're going to do is we're going to, I'm going to show you how to read tablature using the first eight notes of Ode to Joy, it's going to pop up Ode to Joy up here. And when you're looking at Guitar tablature, you're gonna see there's six lines. Well, guess what, six lines, six strings. So each line represents a string on the guitar. The only thing is it's upside down. So the fat string is on the bottom and the thin string is on the top. So it's more based on pitch, something high notes on the top, low notes on the bottom. Okay? So it, it, it's a little bit opposite of what you think. And you're gonna see there's numbers, alright, there's numbers on your guitar. And this is the first time we're going to talk about actually fretting your guitar. So the numbers represent these blocks. Each one of these blocks on your guitar is called a fret, and it starts at 123456789101112. And some guitars have as many as 20, twenty one, twenty two, twenty three, twenty four frets. So we're mostly going to be focusing on these first three in this course. So that simplifies things. But some of these songs we will be moving around a bit, so it's good to know. Now, the top of your guitar, you may see in the front of my guitar doesn't have the dots, but you can see on this electric guitar, maybe on the bottom here there's some white dots on the frets. Those are your odd fret numbers. And a lot of guitars do have that, mine doesn't, but it does have this wonderful hummingbird decoration around the 12th threat, where I have a double-dot on the top of my guitar. So these dots represent the odd fret numbers. So we have 3579, the double-dot is 12, that represents that special thing we talked about before, the octave, so E. Alright, so those are the octaves, alright? The same note, ones, low, ones high in pitch. So what we're gonna do is you'll see on this Ode to Joy tab here, we have the numbers 013. So 0 is what we call playing a string open. We played the string with while doing nothing with our fretting him. Ok. You see the first two notes of Ode to Joy are open on this bottom high E-string. So you can just use the pad of your thumb and pick down, down on that bottom string. All right, so we've got the first two notes open. Open. Now you're gonna see after that the same string, there's the number one. So I just want you to take your first finger and I want you to press the middle of the fret. Don't go to the back of the fret or on top of the fret, it's kinda in the middle of the fret. We're gonna press our first finger into the first fret of that E-string. So, so far we've got open, open one. Alright, we're not going to worry about using different fingers because we're focusing on Reading tab right now. You'll notice that the fourth node is a three. So it's going to be the one to third fret on the high E string. So we have open, open 13. There you go. So it's open, open. First fret, third fret. And then we're going to repeat that backwards. It's going to be 31 open. And now you'll notice that we're going to switch strings here. We're coming up to the B string. So, so far everything has just been on this first string. So now we're gonna take our first finger and we're gonna put it on the third fret of the B string. So you see now we've changed strings, but we're still using the third fret, so it's open, open 1331 and then three, or sorry, open, and then three on the B string. So one more time, so I don't make a mistake. Open, open, 1331, open, and then three on the B string. So you can see all of this is, it's kinda like paint-by-numbers for guitar. It's a coordinate system. It's telling you what string, and it's telling you what fret. Now the downside of tab as it doesn't tell you what finger to use, and neither does standard notation. So that's something that you might need a teacher to assist you with. I will let you know when we work on songs that have tablature, which fingers we'll be using for right now. This was just a lesson on how to actually read tab. So we will talk about that more later when we do songs that require tab. So all it is is a coordinate system. A 0 means you play the string opened, doing nothing with your fretting hand. A one means use the first fret of five would mean use the fifth fret. A twelv would mean use the 12th threat. That's all it's saying. It's saying he played this string at this fret number. Alright, so that is the basics for how to read guitar tablature. 7. The Musical Alphabet: Now very briefly, I want to go over the musical alphabet with you guys so that you understand how music works a little bit. I don't get too much into music theory in this course because again, like I said, I think the terminology for a lot of beginner students can kind of bogged them down. You also don't want me speaking a completely different language that you don't understand. But a lot of our coordinates come from the alphabet in music. So that's why I think it's very important, at least when you're starting out to know what is the musical alphabet. So the musical alphabet is very similar to the regular alphabet set. We only go to the letter G, So we have the letters a, B, C, D, E, F, and G. Those are the notes and lots of it. So once we get to g, we repeat again, a B, C D E F G, a B, C D E F G. So a comes after G. Alright, and before a is G, okay? Does that make sense? Abcdefg, after G is a. Ok, so that's the beginning of the alphabet again. Now, something else I want to make now is we have these things called sharps and flats. And while we won't deal with those too much in this course, I do want you to know about them because you probably saw them on your tuner when we were tuning the guitar. Okay. So the sharp, it looks like a tic tac toe. Alright? So if you can see from over here, it's basically Tic-Tac-Toe. It's what people would call a hashtag now. But a music We call it a sharp, and it means the note is going to go higher. Sharpe is high. Think that in music. And then we have also what looks like a little b. And that's called the flat. And that means think of a flat tire and the tire goes down. So flat tire, lower notes, so sharps or higher notes, flats are lower notes and we can sometimes have sharp letters. So for example, the musical alphabet, you would have a sharp, B, C, C sharp, D, D sharp, E, F, F sharp, G, G sharp, and then back to a. Alright? So you'll notice there were a couple letters that didn't have sharps. And that's because if we look over here, there'll be a diagram of a piano. And you'll see that there's black keys. While those are, those are your Sharps on a piano. We don't have that on a guitar. Unfortunately, those are your, the black keys or your sharps and flats. And like I said, we don't have that on the guitar, but we do have the notes on the guitar. And between after B, you see there's another white note. Then after e, You see there's another white note. So there is no E-sharp, There is no B-sharp because there's no black note to press OK. But if you go lower, there is an E flat. So if you go to one note below, either is a black key under h0, which is called E-flat. I don't want to get into too much of that stuff because you're probably already going cross-eyed and that's not the point of this course. I just wanted to let you know that the musical alphabet that we're gonna be dealing with is basically a, b, c, d, e, f, g. There are these hashtags or Tic Tac toes that are sharps that we will get into eventually when we get into bar chords. And there's other notes that are called flats, which you can also get into depending on what music you're playing. But for the most part in this course, we're going to be sticking with a, B, C, D, E, F, and G. The letters of the alphabet. 8. Preventing Wrist Tension & Pain: What we're going to talk about in this video is wrist tension and risk pain. Especially for a beginner guitar players. You're fretting hand. Usually you're pleasing so hard that you will tend to develop risk pain or even thumb pain in the palm of your thumb. So just some remedies to keep in mind as you go through the course. You do not want to have a death grip on the neck of your guitar. That's where a lot of the tension comes from. This whole forearm, biceps, shoulder. We want this all to be relaxed. You should be able to take your thumb off the back air guitar and your hand should just fall. In the beginning. I know this doesn't happen, especially when you don't have the calyces because you do need to press a little bit harder to get the chords to sound. But eventually you can have a much lighter touch on the guitar. So if the palm of your thumb is hurting, it means that you're pressing on the back of the neck of your guitar too hard, so relaxed that grip. Another thing that happens is students as they get pain crossed the bend in their risks and often means that you're hyper extending your risks. I'm going to turn to decide real quick. So you should, when you're playing your guitar, if you look at my wrist, it's pretty neutral. There's a little bend in it, but for the most part it's a neutral position. Alright? This is what happens to a lot of students. They play like this versus this. So remember in the beginning when I showed you how to hold your guitar, drop your hand, bring it up to the guitar. You will maintain a neutral risk position. A lot of times what happens to students? Remember I told you about the thumb. You wanna keep the thumb flat on the back of the neck of the guitar. Because if it rides up here, you lose distance and you start tweaking your wrist to make up for it. So in the beginning, keep that thumb on the middle of the back of your guitar. Alright, that will help with your thumb position. Ok. Now, that is the biggest cause of risk pain. The other thing is just, again, you're squeezing the whole cord. Sometimes two. Can you see what happens to my eye went out a screen here. You see my thumb. It's off to the side as opposed to up and down. It went to the side that haven't. So a lot of beginners, they turn their thumbs though the thumb I'm overhanging here on purpose, the thumb goes from this to this. It, they turn it this way. So keep that thumb straight up and down for the rest. Now, never never, ever, ever play through risk pain. If you're feeling pain means you're doing something wrong and there's too much tension. And again, this is why we keep practice sessions short in the beginning. This way you don't hurt yourself, you don't injure yourself because if you keep doing it and you can develop some sort of repetitive injury by over stretching that, that tendon and those ligaments. So just relax, practice holding the guitar and breathing. Let the wrist relax and I'll show you some tips later when we learn records, things that can help you more. But just keep that in mind if you're feeling risks Peng, You can also stretch. You can stretch the risk down. You can stretch the wrist up. Okay. Don't be afraid you can stretch a warm up. You can do wrist roles. All right. Especially if you're older and you need to get some blood circulation and some mobility going stretch do up and down with your wrist. That's perfectly fine. Okay. But never play through pain if you're feeling pain, put the guitar down. Or this usually happens more with chords than individual nodes. If you're playing chords, stop practice in the courts and go back to practicing something else that doesn't cause you risk pain. But keep those things in mind. The two biggest things are the pane on the palm of the thumb, which means you're pressing to harbor at your thumb. Or it's the pain across the front of the or the curve of the wrist here, the joint. And that's because most times you're over curling your risk, you're hyper extending, you're pushing your wrist. See, look at even my elbow. A lot of times that's what happens. Students get like a straight elbow and a, and I call this the praying mantis position. So don't do preying mantis. We don't want that. We want the elbow. See how my elbow came back. The elbows almost that like it's not a complete 90, but it it's not straight like this. And when I do that, look what happens. My shoulder tenses to so relaxed. The elbow, dropped the hand, bring it up to the guitar. Try and keep this rich risks as neutral as possible, okay? And that will help you with keeping pain to a minimum on the guitar.