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  #1  
Old 01-12-2013, 02:25 AM
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Default Starting Acoustic Guitar - Over(freaking)whelmed

I just picked up a seagull s6 and want to learn guitar. Youtube is an amazing resource but I am very overwhelmed with the shear amount of videos. It's a nightmare for someone with ADD!!! My plan is to start some lessons with an instructor this summer but I really wanted to give teaching myself a try for a little while.

Are there any videos, online programs or books that you would recommend? Maybe even a youtube channel?

Anyone recommend a lesson plan/guide to help keep it all organized? It's too easy to get sidetracked and noodle around on a song you know in the back of your head that you are not yet equipped to play.

Last edited by Seasonedpro; 01-12-2013 at 02:36 AM.
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Old 01-12-2013, 02:52 AM
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Default Re: Starting Acoustic Guitar - Over(freaking)whelmed

Lol sounds you're just like me. I too have ADHD and wanted to learn the guitar. I purchased a cheap one from guitar center, learned 2 or 3 songs that I was into at the time, and moved on, right back to the drum set. Let's be honest, people like you and I are probably only capable of playing the drums because there's always so much going on behind the kit. We're finally in our element! I commend you for the attempt. I just hope you don't give up as easily as I did. Take your medicine and think it through lol. If you get discouraged, just remember you can always go back to the drums. Kieth moon had ADHD. Maybe it's not such a problem after all...
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Old 01-12-2013, 02:55 AM
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BacteriumFendYoke BacteriumFendYoke is offline
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Default Re: Starting Acoustic Guitar - Over(freaking)whelmed

Seagull make lovely guitars. I'm very fond of their necks, slightly shallower and wider than usual, I recall.

You're best off learning the open chords, then the minor variations on those chords. Teaching yourself barre chords won't do you any harm either, so learn A,B,C,D,E,F and G, then the minor variants. The B shape requires you to barre (there is another variant, but barre early and barre often!) and then you'll be equipped to learn the incidental chords as well - like F#, etc. Learn the note positions and how they relate.

With the chords, start with some basic scales. There are lots of different ways of playing the same scale but usually, it's best to learn them in one position. Learn a major scale pattern (in the first and second position) then the minor scales (there are two, harmonic and melodic, which have differences on the descending part of the scale). Most other scales are variants of those, so you'll be well-equipped from there.
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Old 01-12-2013, 03:27 AM
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Default Re: Starting Acoustic Guitar - Over(freaking)whelmed

don't get overwhelmed, learn 3 chords, and learn to change between them, use one good strum pattern, and just play play play.. my strum pattern ( which can be broken up any number of ways is { down down up up down up } been using that pattern for over 40 years. good luck, and remember........have fun!
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Old 01-12-2013, 03:33 AM
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Default Re: Starting Acoustic Guitar - Over(freaking)whelmed

I have the S6 entourage. Beautiful guitars with a very mellow tone, think REM's "Drive." Watch the top though, they scratch easily.

I second learning open chords first. Marty Schwartz on YouTube has a lesson on pretty much every notable song out there. Have fun with it and then move onto scales.
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Old 01-12-2013, 04:27 AM
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Default Re: Starting Acoustic Guitar - Over(freaking)whelmed

BacteriumFendYoke gave good advice.
You need a start. And believe me - those chords are a good start! Many never take it any further than that. But take the time to get familiar with them. And from some moment try to understand those chords and that the basic chords are simply constructed by (note steps in relation to the key note) 1 (prime), 3 (third), 5 (fifth), plus the same notes appearing 1 octave above/below that, depending on the specific voicing (=choice of where/how exactly to fret those notes on the neck - which position, which strings).

Very beneficial to learn the notes on the fretboard, at least in the lower 5 frets, on every string.

There's another way to go which would be pure fun - check out alternative/open tunings. I did so and was instantly hooked - DADGAD is _the_ acoustic guitar tuning for me. I'm using a couple more but that one is unbelievably nice. You'll come up with original ideas at the spot. There's tons more tunings but I've just explored about 4-5 of them which got me started to create a bunch of originals. On the acoustic guitar I _never_ use the standard tuning - too boring, too limiting (but... on the acoustic gtr. I'm usually playing original stuff - now if I had to play the ac. gtr. in a band I guess I'd have to stick to standard tuning most of the time). But you should be familiar with the standard tuning to play with others or in order to learn existing songs (unless they're played in alternative tunings of course).

DADGAD would be standard tuning but dropping 3 strings a whole note.
Those downtuned strings would be: E1 (the low E string/lowest string on the instrument), b5 (second highest string) and e6 (highest string).

You can get an idea of that tuning by looking it up on YouTube.
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Old 01-12-2013, 07:26 AM
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Default Re: Starting Acoustic Guitar - Over(freaking)whelmed

Thank you. Those are some hefty suggestions to my newbie guitar playing ears. I feel like I'm taking on the Big Texan 72oz sirloin challenge. This will take a while to digest.

Yeah. I really like the Seagull S6. It felt the best in my hands for the price range I was looking in. I just had the guy at the shop play the ones I was interested in. I was pretty impressed with the sound even up against a used Guild and Martin. Now I just need to learn some stuff.

Is there a DVD or book that might help with this process?

Do appreciate the help!

I really do not want to allow myself to give up and keep kicking the guitar learning can down the road.
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Old 01-12-2013, 07:35 AM
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Default Re: Starting Acoustic Guitar - Over(freaking)whelmed

There's a ton of tutorials (of course). But unfortunately there's nothing I could recommend right now. The stuff I have is more lead guitar oriented or too advanced.
I hope others will give you more specific advice here.

When I started the guitar (actually nylon guitar but played campfire style) I joined a small course that would teach evergreens - Beatles stuff etc. We were singing those tunes, the learning speed in terms of chords was pretty low but this made me aware that 3 chords (actually even 2, or 1!) is enough to create songs, haha.

Great to learn you have good ears and a raised awareness for harmonic relations.
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Old 01-12-2013, 08:13 AM
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Default Re: Starting Acoustic Guitar - Over(freaking)whelmed

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seasonedpro View Post
I just picked up a seagull s6 and want to learn guitar. Youtube is an amazing resource but I am very overwhelmed with the shear amount of videos. It's a nightmare for someone with ADD!!! My plan is to start some lessons with an instructor this summer but I really wanted to give teaching myself a try for a little while.

Are there any videos, online programs or books that you would recommend? Maybe even a youtube channel?

Anyone recommend a lesson plan/guide to help keep it all organized? It's too easy to get sidetracked and noodle around on a song you know in the back of your head that you are not yet equipped to play.
how long did it take for you to feel comfortable on drums ? i would suggest that that is the same amount of time you should give yourself to feel comfortable on guitar.

noodling is exactly how it begins. if you continue playing the noodling will get better. in time, you will have a complete picture of the fretboard and how lines weave themselves through chords. your theory knowledge will allow you to understand why some notes work well with a given chord (melody / harmony) and some do not (dissonance).

scales are the rudiments of note playing. pick a few and play them. it will allow you to exercise your fingers in preparation for actually knowing what to do with them.

get a chord book. try to play every chord you can cleanly. just keep doing it. sooner or later you will know what to do with them. you may actually see what you want to do with them before you can physically play them cleanly. do not fear. just as with your drums, keep going and the gaps in your knowledge will fill themselves in.

they key is Don't Stop playing. if you don't stop, you will get there.

also talk shop with other guitarists. share notes. pontificate.

same as drums.

see also:
(technique-wise)
Hammer-On's
Pull Off's
Slides

take a few years to sort through which string brands / string gauges / and picks you like. consider fingerpicks / flat picks or no picks. consider flat picks-or-thumb picks and fingers together. try a slide or two. see if you like brass chrome or glass. store bought or coriciden bottle.

tunings: today's players play in a multitude of various tunings. some made up personal tunings, some standard E tuned down to D C even B. there's standard tuning with only the E string tuned down to D (Dropped D). there's open tunings that are good for slide (A, G, E). there's the aforementioned DADGAD. i would start with standard tuning and experiment with others as you see fit.

and yes indeed....have fun.
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Last edited by drstrangefunk; 01-12-2013 at 08:53 AM. Reason: Don't Stop.
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  #10  
Old 01-12-2013, 08:45 AM
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Default Re: Starting Acoustic Guitar - Over(freaking)whelmed

I took to drums very naturally. I had a red hot determination to learn them too. Never have I had that much determination to get over the learning curve with anything. The focus was immense. Where the hell has that gone? Getting married, having kids, working a regular job too...probably plays a role.

I deleted that part about having a good natural ear for music. Don't wanna sound cocky. I'm a humble cat. Just want to pick some brains on here.

Getting a guitar stand was surprisingly a great purchase. Probably pick up the guitar 10-20 times more per day than if it were to be sitting in a closet or on a bed in a guest room. Nice to have it staring at you in the face.

Theory is going to be a hard one for me to grasp. I can hear the differences but understanding the nuts and bolts behind it and breaking it down will be a challenge for my stupid brain. I'm such a visual and big picture thinker.
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Old 01-12-2013, 06:20 PM
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Default Re: Starting Acoustic Guitar - Over(freaking)whelmed

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seasonedpro View Post
I took to drums very naturally. I had a red hot determination to learn them too. Never have I had that much determination to get over the learning curve with anything. The focus was immense. Where the hell has that gone? Getting married, having kids, working a regular job too...probably plays a role.

I deleted that part about having a good natural ear for music. Don't wanna sound cocky. I'm a humble cat. Just want to pick some brains on here.

Getting a guitar stand was surprisingly a great purchase. Probably pick up the guitar 10-20 times more per day than if it were to be sitting in a closet or on a bed in a guest room. Nice to have it staring at you in the face.

Theory is going to be a hard one for me to grasp. I can hear the differences but understanding the nuts and bolts behind it and breaking it down will be a challenge for my stupid brain. I'm such a visual and big picture thinker.
Theory In A Nut Shell:

get your chord book out. one that shows the shape of the chord as well as which note is the ROOT / 3(rd) / 5(th) / 7(th) / 9(th) / 13(th) etc.

3rd is what makes a chord major or minor. flatting (lowering the note) the third in a major chord makes it minor.

Root and 5th (omitting the 3rd) together make up a power chord. play with distortion. have big fun. distortion does not have to be loud, just crunchy. enjoy.

7th - 7ths can be raised or lowered. this is usually for jazz or more melodic music. the DOMINANT 7th is the one you will most usually play. the Dominant 7th is the "Oh Yeah !!!!!!!!!!!!" chord heard at the end of many a blues tune. Major 7ths are really nice for jazz.

9ths are often used in funk.

13ths are often used in jazz and more melodic R&B. this is deep territory.
++++++++++++++++
2nds and 4ths - are usually passing notes on the way to resolving to another chord. a way to spice it up a bit and are usually called suspended 2nds and suspended 4ths (sus 4) as written. simply...think of Sus 4 as the Amen chord at the end of a hymn.
Ahhhhhhhhhh-mennnnnnnnn. Ah is the Sus 4 which resolves to the (Men) regular old 3rd (major chord). notice how the ahhh feels unresolved ? like it's "Suspended" in mid air waiting for a grounding resolution ? Men is the resolve. regular old major chord.

ex. A Sus 4 resolves to A

you'll figure out what to do with Sus 2 and probably already have. think of Sus 2 and Sus 4 as the wiggle room surrounding a major chord. think of your regular old major chord as the center and 2 and 4 as a joystick toggle to center the chord on the (major) 3rd. a little left, a little right...and back to center.

that's it.
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Last edited by drstrangefunk; 01-14-2013 at 07:36 PM.
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Old 01-12-2013, 06:23 PM
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BacteriumFendYoke BacteriumFendYoke is offline
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Default Re: Starting Acoustic Guitar - Over(freaking)whelmed

That's probably the best quick description of basic chord theory that I've ever read. Kudos.
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Old 01-12-2013, 09:59 PM
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Default Re: Starting Acoustic Guitar - Over(freaking)whelmed

Look up CAGED, first you learn those chords C,A,G,E,D learn the major, minor and 7th variations of those. Then learn pentatonic scale shapes and your 80% there to average hack guitarist. Throw in some power chords and barre chords as you get comfortable and learn the real scale patterns( see CAGED). If you master that and hammer-ons, pull-offs and bends you'll be bale to play guitar. PS learn music theory.
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