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JesseW316

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I'm just starting. I got my guitar this week. I've had two in the past and never took the time to sit down and learn bc I didn't have the patience lol. It's frustrating at the start and I have trouble staying with it. This time, I've resolved to make sure I do it right.The reason I want to learn so badly is that I'm a huge Dave Matthews fan, and I mean huge. I've always wanted to learn to play his songs, I think it would be a great skill to have and since I'm not the most artistic/creative person (I'm more rigid and calculated, not abstract), it will help me develop that part of my brain.Are there any suggestions on starting out? I've got some good videos of people playing Dave songs and I've got the tabs for all of the songs so I've got that set, but I've never really been taught the fundamentals (proper strumming techniques, warm ups, proper way to grip with left hand, etc.) I've found through messing around with one of the easier songs (Big Eyed Fish), that I've got the idea right, but executing the notes is difficult and I'm not getting the clean sound that I should be, everything's kind of muddled and I'm having trouble.Any help from guitarists?

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Learn the chords before you worry about learning songs.That's all I got.Oh, and replace the Dave Matthews poster over your bed with this one:GuitarChordPoster_950.gif

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use alternate picking ( IE Pick up and down) don't just always strum down.
although this is needed, I think he should worry more about learning the cords and scales before he goes into alternate picking. My first few years didn't consist at all of alternate picking. To the OP, learn your basic chords and play them until your fingers start to bleed... seriously. Look up and learn ACDEG for your first few. Don't worry about learning any songs yet because they're going to consist of some type of chord and you need to know the basics first (finger placement, etc..)If you're wanting to play seriously, stick with it and dont' let it frustrate you. The first 6 months will be complete hell and it'll seem like nothing is going right. If you can get past that 6 months, things will just start to click and you'll make chords without even thinking about it. I've been playing about 8 years and I would REALLY regret it if my dad didn't push me and make me keep playing during those tough times.

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although this is needed, I think he should worry more about learning the cords and scales before he goes into alternate picking. My first few years didn't consist at all of alternate picking. To the OP, learn your basic chords and play them until your fingers start to bleed... seriously. Look up and learn ACDEG for your first few. Don't worry about learning any songs yet because they're going to consist of some type of chord and you need to know the basics first (finger placement, etc..)If you're wanting to play seriously, stick with it and dont' let it frustrate you. The first 6 months will be complete hell and it'll seem like nothing is going right. If you can get past that 6 months, things will just start to click and you'll make chords without even thinking about it. I've been playing about 8 years and I would REALLY regret it if my dad didn't push me and make me keep playing during those tough times.
What did you learn on?

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What did you learn on?
do you mean what kind of guitar? when I first started it was on my dads acoustic Seagal. From there I got one of those cheap squire electrics to start on. then went to an esp ltd f-200, then a real fender stra with custom mexican pickups, and my last purchase was a very pricey Takamine acoustic, which I play the most now that I'm not in my band anymore and I live in an apartment.

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Thu best thing you can do is learn to read music. Really, really well. If you really want to play DMB, a strong theoretic foundation will give you freedom in voicing that you can't even understand until you're there. Trust me, the theory is more imortant than technique, to start out.Also: if you have the time and money, get a good teacher. Otherwise, I would imagine it's hard to stay with it after the new wears off, but while you still suck.

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When it comes to Rock, Blues, etc., the pentatonic scale is the best scale to learn. Don't get ahead of yourself though. Learn all the basics, then learn how to do bar chords. I think it's best to learn piano first.Start with something easy. I'd reccomend something by Chet Atkins.

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When it comes to Rock, Blues, etc., the pentatonic scale is the best scale to learn. Don't get ahead of yourself though. Learn all the basics, then learn how to do bar chords. I think it's best to learn piano first.Start with something easy. I'd reccomend something by Chet Atkins.
Yeah, having such a solid piano background as I do really makes every instument a lot easier to pick up.

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I was privileged enough to have this guy teach me, http://www.ricomonaco.comIf you are just starting out, then Dave Matthews isn't where you need to be.Your main focus right now should be on theory (why things work), practicing (how things work), and executing (making things work). Should you learn how to read music? It wouldn't hurt, but the truth is, the guitar is one of those instruments where you can get by very well without ever learning the difference between an Asus4 or a Cm7. However, learning how to read music and knowing your music theory can only do more for you, than against you.As for your fingers not being strong enough, do this simple chromatic exercise everyday, and I mean EVERYDAY. Do it forwards, and backwards. From the 1st fret, all the way up the fretboard. Play it slowly and cleanly.E-------------------------------------------------------------------------1--2--3--4-------------------------------------G-----------------------------------------------------------1--2--3--4---------------------------------------------------B--------------------------------------------1--2--3--4------------------------------------------------------------------D------------------------------1--2--3--4--------------------------------------------------------------------------------A---------------1--2--3--4-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------E--1--2--3--4-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Feel free to PM me if you ever need advice or help on anything.

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Yeah, have such a solid piano background as I do really makes every instument a lot easier to pick up.
I was never good at piano, but it taught me music theory. I think it's a lot easier to learn things like what notes make up a D minor (the saddest of all keys) chord on piano than any other instrument.

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I was never good at piano, but it taught me music theory. I think it's a lot easier to learn things like what notes make up a D minor (the saddest of all keys) chord on piano than any other instrument.
Well yeah, I mean it's all laid out so clean. I'm sure thing guy isn't serious enough to learn piano first, but I still don't think it's a great idea to just go buy some tab of songs you like, and try to play'em. I mean you don't even know what you're playing.

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Well yeah, I mean it's all laid out so clean. I'm sure thing guy isn't serious enough to learn piano first, but I still don't think it's a great idea to just go buy some tab of songs you like, and try to play'em. I mean you don't even know what you're playing.
I agree. I would much rather see a beginner trying to figure out at least the basics of songs by listening to them, instead of learning them from a book. Learning to play by ear is one of the most, if not the most, important skill to have as a guitarist.

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I never took lessons and basically started learning by playing Nirvana songs friends would teach me in high school as they were mega-easy and it impressed girls....but that caused me to get very power chord happy so then by learning Beatles songs I was able to circumvent that and never looked back. Anyhoo, what I'm trying to say is play as much as possible, then play some more. If you get unfocused turn the tv on mute and play while watching tv. I've written more stuff while watching the TV guide channel than anything else. Teachers will only bring you down, I've had so many people tell me things like "you play guitar? I tried playing once but got bored when my teacher would make me play Mary Had a Little Lamb and I quit", etc. Bottom line is you should do what you're doing now, pick it up and see if you develop some sort of love affair like I did. If you do then it shouldn't be a problem in terms of practice time because you will feel empty without it. Oh and practice barre chords....a lot as well as moving from them to simpler chords and back during songs, etc. Something like Game of Pricks by GBV or if you're non-indie, Don't Look Back in Anger by Oasis will work also. That should help your strength as well.

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know that radiohead song "anyone can play guitar"?it's true.just try to pound out as many chords as you can in order to get your fingers into shape, and the rest will follow.learning to read music is entirely unnecessary for what you want to be able to do, i.e. be like every other douche and get chicks to blow you by playing a few dmb songs. it's ok, i did it too. crash works really well for this. it helps if you can sing too.

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although this is needed, I think he should worry more about learning the cords and scales before he goes into alternate picking. My first few years didn't consist at all of alternate picking. To the OP, learn your basic chords and play them until your fingers start to bleed... seriously. Look up and learn ACDEG for your first few. Don't worry about learning any songs yet because they're going to consist of some type of chord and you need to know the basics first (finger placement, etc..)If you're wanting to play seriously, stick with it and dont' let it frustrate you. The first 6 months will be complete hell and it'll seem like nothing is going right. If you can get past that 6 months, things will just start to click and you'll make chords without even thinking about it. I've been playing about 8 years and I would REALLY regret it if my dad didn't push me and make me keep playing during those tough times.
It's much easier to learn if you do it off the bat. I learned to play alternate picking. Alot of my indy rock friends mocked me because it wasn't "punk" or what ever. But you can play much faster if you alternate pick. And you can also play slower by choice. It think it's good to be able to chose to play slow, rather than to be forced to.

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learn the chords like others have said. it doesnt sound like you need to be to worried about music theory for what you are trying to do. learn that later if you start getting serious about the instrument.

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Do yourself a favor and get an album called 81 Elmira Street by Danny Gatton. They don't call him the TeleMaster for nothing. Unfortunately, he's dead now.

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Thanks everyone, keep the advice coming. I'm not quitting this time and I am more interested in really learning different instruments and being able to understand music, not just a few songs on a guitar. I'm starting with this since it is where my interest is right now, and as time goes hopefully I will advance to other things and get more in depth.

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Just use power chords and strum as hard as you can, while screaming as loud as you can.Seriously, though, just learn how the chords work and know the notes in the fretboard, scales and whatnot.This should work if you're not too serious. I've been playing bass and acoustic guitar [love DMB!] for uhh... maybe 6 years or so and I only know some very basic theory, enough to mess around.If you do want to invest some real effort, it's great to learn everything you can, and getting a teacher might help you out, at least in the beginning [then again, there are good ones and bad ones, but little things and bad habits will be eliminated right away, which helped me when I was starting - I quit my lessons after 6 months or so]. Reading music for example, it's great, but I never had the patience to really study it.It's strange, I love music more than poker, yet I've studied more poker than music.And practice a lot with your pinky, I know sound is what matters but it bothers me to see guitar players using wacky positions because they can't use their pinky properly.

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I've played Guitar Hero once.

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