I wanna learn the Guitar

I got a guitar for Christmas and then the string snapped, and it was out of tune, but I want to start again. Can anyone tell me how long it takes to get good, and just basic stuff?



It’s too bad that string snapped. Now the damn thing is useless.

What? I’ve got extra strings, but I don’t know how to put them on?

Go to a musci store. Have them teach you (how to install strings, THEN how to play guitar.)

Ugh… please ignore the above poster.

So you wanna get good eh? Well perhaps you should think of HOW you want to sound (are we trying for jazz, classical, rock, what?) then think who sounds the best and learn to emulate that style. Search the web for forums of people who like that style too, ask them how they started and how they practice.

Depending on the skill you are attmpting to achive, anticipate to practice ALOT. You better hope you love to play guitar, otherwise dont waste your time.

In the meantime, do finger drills and develop your hands to get used to the guitar. If you can afford it get lessons.

Good luck to you

-x out

Well, Ryan, what you need to do (if you haven’t already) is hike down to your friendly neighborhood music store and ask the guys there to show you how to properly install new strings. It seems like a simple task, but if you don’t do it right they’ll be slipping out of tune frequently and causing you a lot of frustration.

While you are down at the friendly neighborhood music store, go ahead and by an electronic tuner. Unless you have a good, and I mean really good, natural “ear”, you won’t be able to tune your guitar just right, thus making your songs to sound off and causing you (and your listener) a lot of frustration.

In order to start playing the damn thing, pick some songs you like and search the internet for chord tabletures for those songs. Tabletures show you where to put your fingers on the fretboard to produce certain chords. You should understand them when you see them.

I hope these suggestions help. I’ve been playing 25 years and the guitar has given me a lot of enjoyment. And frustration.

I want to play Rock/Jazz, also I want to get better at playing the piano.

Thanks for all the advice…

Ryan, I play classical & electric guitar, and would be happy to give you a few pointers.

First note: New strings are a pain in the arse! Takes about a week or so to stretch them good, but until then you have to be careful not to pop them. I’ve almost lost an eye many a time.

I agree with xenothrope in that you need to know how you want to sound. I actually never intended to end up playing classical, but got started with Metallica and Megadeth, but with the complex riffs, the transition was fairly easy.

A tuner is a good thing to have as well. I still don’t have one, but that’s only because I can usually tune mine by the piano. Barring that, though you can even find downloadable tuner programs for your computer, but I wouldn’t trust the accuracy. The few I’ve tried were a bit flaky on the higher notes.

Do you want to learn to read music or just play by tab? Tablature will be eaiser for you to read to start, but depending on the type of music you’d like to learn I would highly recommend learning to read sheet music.

What are your influences? What kind of guitar is it?

When I first started playing, it took me about a week to get my scales down and play a simple tune. Another few days and I could fit in some bar chords. Another week and I could do major and minor chords. It’s not incredibly difficult to get the basics, but like anything requires practice and coordination.

I don’t have any books to recommend in particular, but just take your favorite music and try to pick it apart with your ear. Listen for all the different instruments, melodies, and then try to get as close as you can by picking the notes out.

And, as Wartime Consigliori pointed out, you can find tablature online for just about any song you want. Check out OLGA to start your search.

Good luck!

The influences are Coldplay and Weezer (Buddy Holly), and yes I want to read Music, I’ve had a real urge to play Music, but I’ve always pushed it aside. My goal is to play Piano, Bass and Electric Guitar. But I have an acoustic guitar.

How long does it take until it gets natural? I’ll do whatever it takes.

Practice is the big one. I know alot of people that really liked the idea of playing guitar, but crapped out right away. i’ve tried to give 3 people lessons, and every time I’d sit down for the 2nd lesson, they hadn’t even picked up the guitar since the last lesson.

Put in the time and you’ll get it. You’d be surprised at how quickly you’ll improve if you work at it all the time. if you were to practice for one hour a day every day for three months, you will have made some significant headway.

I started about 35 years ago and am mostly self taught. I found Mel Bay books helpful getting started. He also had one for jazz guitar that helped me with that as well as some nice chord books. A friend just sent me this url, try it out for chords.


What kind of guitar do you have? A bad guitar will make you hate it I KNOW!
My first two were made by Harmony (gag, I puke on them!) They were the most painful guitars I ever played. I had the legendary Stella (my first and it cost 1968 $35!) and one of their electrics. Neither would stay tuned, neither had a truss rod and both necks warped so bad it is actually funny to remember their shapes now. The Stella’s neck eventually seperated from the body and was repaired by my step father with a couple wood screws. It wasn’t from abuse either, I’ve always been a fanatic about my guitars.

Here’s a great discussion forum for beginners, run by the good folks at Acoustic Guitar Magazine. Really nice, helpful group of posters, many in the exact same boat as you.

Beginner’s Guitar Forum

I disagree with the ‘choosing your style’ stuff. As a beginner you should concentrate on just doing your scales (don’t forget the Pentatonics)(don’t worry…that will make sense later) and finger exercises. Then work on your major and minor chords. Get those down before you start worrying about a ‘style’.

You’ll likely discover as you do those exercises that you’re style is your own and not a derivative of other peoples. I’ve found nothing more frustrating than trying to sound like someone else and not being able to do it.

Well-meant advice, I suppose.

Here’s at spot for you:

This is a great site for learning and teaching. They’ll give you the exercises you need to develop your skills and style.

As the others, I’ll be glad to help with any questions you might have.

And do get that electronic tuner. A cheap one should cost less that ten dollars.

Oh, and if you get decent on guitar you’ll be amazed at how good you’ll be at bass.

How long it takes to get natural depends on you…I’ve been playing for 8 years and felt natural after 1 or 2, I hardly play now though so I no longer am as good.

I’d reccommend you getting self taught or having a friend show you, I took actual guitar lessons and it seems those are usually a ripoff.