Monday, November 16, 2015

Mapping the Guitar Neck

There are notes all over the neck of the guitar. Unlike the piano, the notes are not laid out in an (reasonably easy to manage) orderly fashion.

Here is where you can find all the notes on the neck of the guitar from open position to the 12th fret.

So how can this information be helpful to us guitarists? With a little understanding of chord construction, you can find new ways to play the same chords you already know. 

Try it out...
Here are the notes in some of our familiar chords. Try finding new places to play them on the neck of the guitar. See if you can come up with at least two new ways to play the following chords:

G = G, B, D
C = C, E, G
D = D, F#, A
Em = E, G, B
Am = A, C, E

The notes can be in any order you want on any combination of strings. Neck mapping is sort of a word search but with musical results.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Seasonal Finger-style Guitar

This time of year is a great time for music. To that end, I have written you a short finger-style arrangement of a seasonal classic, Jingle Bells.
This arrangement is just for the chorus section and not the verse. Perhaps I can add that at a later time, but it is slightly more complicated and I thought this would be a good starting point. Technically this arrangement is meant to challenge you to keep your thumb moving and alternating. The thumb is such an important part of "driving" the rhythm in finger-style playing. I have added an audio clip of this arrangement to give you an idea of how it could sound.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Rock Ballad Strum

When a song has a slower tempo, more activity in your strumming pattern can give it lift and energy. The Rock Ballad Strum is a great strumming pattern for generating the requisite energy to turn a slower ballad into a rock classic. The attached example features 2 songs that can be enhanced by using the Rock Ballad Strum. Hey Jude by the Beatles and Drops of Jupiter by Train

Here is an example of the pattern. down-down-down-down,up,down,up,down-down-down

Guitar Riffs: Exploring the People who play the Guitar