Understand and Play the Acoustic Guitar

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Basics

Hello and welcome to VisiHow. Welcome to our series of videos on how to play the guitar for the complete beginner. These videos will be applicable for both acoustic and electric guitar and we will show you the basic concepts to get you started on the long road to becoming a guitar master. In these videos we're going to show you how to hold the guitar, we're going to introduce you to the parts of the guitar, the strings, strumming, finger picking and then we'll introduce you to some basic chords to help you get started to play your first song. Then we'll introduce you to some blues techniques, and also some power chords.

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Steps

  1. 1
    You can check out these other videos on the VisiHow site and we can begin this wonderful and ubiquitous instrument, the guitar
    .
    Check out these videos, and let's get started. Thank you for choosing VisiHow.
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Video: Understand and Play the Acoustic Guitar Part 1

Tune an Acoustic Guitar with an Electronic Tuner

Hello and welcome to VisiHow. Welcome to our series of videos on how to play guitar for the absolute beginner. In this video, we're going to show you how to tune your guitar with a guitar tuner. This is an electronic device which will allow you to tune your guitar. It's really vital that you buy a guitar tuner when you get your guitar because it's very hard to tune your guitar manually. This is something you will learn over time. If your guitar is out of tune everything will sound bad. This will demotivate you and you won't know if you're playing something right, or have a good sense of how you're progressing, and you just won't enjoy it as much. Get a guitar tuner as quickly as possible so you can always stay in tune and it will be a much more fulfilling process. Here is my guitar tuner.

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Steps

  1. 1
    My guitar is out of tune, if I pluck the strings it sounds horrible
    .
    What we need to do is tune the guitar. We have three lights on the tuner, green means it is in the right place and the other lights indicate if we are too high or too low. We're going to pluck the string and this will give us a reading. So the first string is in the right area, but we need to tighten it up a little bit.
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  2. 2
    On the guitar head, we're going to turn the tuner that correlates with the string
    .
    Keep plucking the string while turning the tuner until we see the green light on the tuner. We can see that it's moving into the right area so we just need to keep playing with it.
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  3. 3
    Now we can see the green light is showing so the string is tuned
    .
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  4. 4
    You're going to do the same for every string
    .
    Now we are going to do the A string, the fifth string. This one is good now.
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  5. 5
    Now the fourth string
    .
    It is too high so we need to loosen it off a bit.
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  6. 6
    We're looking for the green light
    .
    Now the third string.
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  7. 7
    Now the second string
    .
    The notes are getting higher and higher. The second one is correct, so we will move on to the first string, the E string. There's the green light, that's what we're looking for.
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  8. 8
    Now the sound is a lot more defined, a lot more melodic
    .
    Now your guitar is tuned, you're ready to play and make some wonderful sounds. You've been watching a video on how to tune your acoustic or electric guitar. If you have any questions or suggestions then you can leave them in the section below. You can also find the links to the other videos in this series so have a look at them, check them out and carry on progressing. You've been watching VisiHow. Goodbye.
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Video: Understand and Play the Acoustic Guitar Tune an Acoustic Guitar with an Electronic Tuner

Hold an Acoustic Guitar Properly

Hello and welcome to VisiHow and welcome to our series of videos on how to play the guitar for the complete beginner. In this video, we're going to show you how to hold the guitar. It's very important that you find a good position, one that works well for you, where you're comfortable because you're going to be sitting and playing for a long time.

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Steps

  1. 1
    The first thing you need to do is find a good place to sit, a good chair
    .
    You must keep your back straight. If, like me, you're playing a right handed guitar, the most common style of guitar, you're going to secure the guitar on your right thigh using 4 points of the body. The right thigh, the forearm, the chest and the left hand. The guitar needs to be upright resting comfortably on your thigh, and your right forearm resting on the body of the guitar. With your left arm, you want to elevate the fret board and the guitar so that your left hand and arm can move comfortably up and down the fret board. You're going to be doing a lot of work with your fingers.
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  2. 2
    We're going to be using the right thumb for picking, the classical way to pick is to have your thumb at a 45 degree angle away from the string and arch your hand slightly
    .
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  3. 3
    The more contemporary style is to leave your thumb flat next to the strings, allowing you to move up and down to strum the strings
    .
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  4. 4
    It's also important to remember to keep your left thumb on the back of the guitar fret board, you don't want to be sticking your thumb over too much, unless you're going to play some notes with it
    .
    You want to have quick and easy access to all the frets.
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  5. 5
    This has been a video on how to hold your guitar
    .
    You will want to experiment and find a good position where you feel comfortable and work with that. If you have any questions or comments you can leave them in the section below. You've been watching VisiHow. Goodbye.
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Video: Understand and Play the Acoustic Guitar Hold an Acoustic Guitar Properly

Different Parts of an Acoustic Guitar

Hello and welcome to VisiHow. This is the fourth video in our series on how to play the guitar for the absolute beginner. In this video, we're going to concentrate on looking at the different parts of the guitar. The guitar I have is actually a 3/4 guitar, which means it's smaller than the full-size guitar. You can also get a half sized guitar or a 1/4 guitar if you are very small. Here are the different parts of the guitar, starting from the top.

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Steps

  1. 1
    Here we have the head of the guitar
    .
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  2. 2
    We have the tuning pegs at the side
    .
    Depending on your guitar, you'll have different styles of tuning pegs. This is a classical acoustic guitar.
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  3. 3
    Here we have the nut
    .
    You can also see the 6 strings here.
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  4. 4
    Here we have the fretboard
    .
    These raised pieces of metal are frets. They help us to play the individual notes.
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  5. 5
    Then we have the main body of the guitar
    .
    Here we have the sound hole, where the sound echos and reverberates.
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  6. 6
    We have the lower bout
    .
    The bigger part of the body.
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  7. 7
    This is the upper bout
    .
    The smaller part of the body.
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  8. 8
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  9. 9
    Here is the bridge
    .
    The raised part where we have inserted the strings to keep them tight.
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  10. 10
    Here's the back and sides, obviously
    .
    It's nice and hollow to create a good sound vibration.
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  11. 11
    These are all the different elements that make up your guitar
    .
    Now you know what they are. If you have and questions or comments about this video please leave them in the section below where you will also find the links to the other videos in this series. You've been watching VisiHow. Goodbye.
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Video: Understand and Play the Acoustic Guitar Different Parts of an Acoustic Guitar

Strings and Notes

Hello and welcome to VisiHow. Welcome to our series of learning guitar for the absolute beginner. In this fifth video, we are going to look at the guitar strings and the different notes they represent.

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Steps

  1. 1
    Starting at the top, we have the sixth string
    .
    This is always confusing for beginners, the sixth string seems like it should be called the 1st string but it isn't. The sixth string is on the top and the first string, the thinnest string, is on the bottom. If you ever heard someone talking about the sixth string or the third string, you know which one it is now. Each string is actually a note. The top string, the sixth string, is an E. You can play an open E by strumming the sixth string. The sixth string is the thickest and the deepest, it is a very low note and as we move down to the other strings we're moving towards the highest note, the first string at the bottom, which is also an E, but a high E.
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  2. 2
    The fifth string is an A
    .
    You can pluck the open A string and it sounds a lot more defined and a lot crisper if you use your nail or your pick. I have no nails at the moment, but you need to grow them as long as possible on your right hand to allow you to pluck the strings and create a more beautiful sound. On your left hand, you want to have no nails so that you can press down on the frets easily without being obstructed by the nail. You're going to look quite strange with your left hand having short nails and your right hand having long nails but that's the fashionable sacrifice you'll have to make. So, the open E is the 6th string and the open A is the fifth string.
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  3. 3
    The fourth string is a D
    .
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  4. 4
    Next we have the third string which is a G
    .
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  5. 5
    The second string is a B
    .
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  6. 6
    As we've already said, the first string is an E, the high E
    .
    So that's E, A, D, G, B, E. There's a very easy way to remember those letters, if you can make an acronym and create a little saying, just like about the planets, to help you remember them. One that I've heard is Eddie Ate Dynamite Good Bye Eddie.
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  7. 7
    If you know what note the string is, that allows us to find what note each individual fret is
    .
    To work this out, we start with the letter and the note of the string. So open is A. The notes of guitar music goes from A to G. A, B, C, D, E, F, G. Between A and B, and between most of the letters there is one space, a one space gap, on the fret board. But between B and C, and E and F there no gap, so it's just next to it. It's quite complicated, but I'll show you an example. So the fifth string is an open A, and we're going to look for B.
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  8. 8
    There is a one space gap between A and B, so skip one space, and then we have B, the second fret
    .
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  9. 9
    Then there is no gap between B and C, so we go immediately to the next fret, C
    .
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  10. 10
    There is a gap between C and D, so skip one space, and there is D
    .
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  11. 11
    For D to E, you skip another space
    .
    Here's E.
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  12. 12
    There is no gap between E and F, so just go to the next fret
    .
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  13. 13
    Skip a fret for G
    .
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  14. 14
    Skip another fret and you're back to A
    .
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  15. 15
    All the notes, A, B, C, D, E, F, and G can be found on each string
    .
    We would stop here on the 12th fret, and then we'd begin the sequence again on the 13th fret.
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  16. 16
    Now you know the strings, you know what note they are and how to find the note for each individual fret
    .
    You can combine them harmonically or melodically into a scale, where you're playing up and down going from a high note to a low note and creating some very beautiful sounds. This was a video on guitar strings, and the notes that they represent. If you have any questions or suggestions about this video you can leave them in the section below where you can also find links to other videos in this series, so check them out. You've been watching VisiHow.
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Video: Understand and Play the Acoustic Guitar Strings and Notes

Strumming an Acoustic Guitar

Hello and welcome to VisiHow. Welcome to a series on how to play a guitar for the complete beginner.

Steps

  1. 1
    In this video we are going to talk about strumming in general
    .
    So when you are playing the chords such as the E major. You got to strung the strings, nice and clean.
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  2. 2
    To strung, you can either use a plectrum which is a small piece of plastic
    .
    It is a plastic triangle with a rounded head and that you can grip into your fingers and pinch and is very good in a making a clear full, sound because your fingers are not touching the strings and then not absorb in the sounds. Also it is very useful for plucking individual strings. When you strum it, it is very easy to do that with a plectrum because it's so small. Sometimes your thumbs and your fingers are big and they get in the way - so the plectrum can be easier.
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  3. 3
    I prefer to use my fingers because my fingers are more intimate with the guitar
    .
    It is more physical when you are touching the guitar - you already feel more a part of it. Your fingers are looser and more free. So if you are going to use fingers, what you want to do is grow your nails long on your right hand, or your left hand if you are playing a left-handed guitar.
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  4. 4
    You want to pinch your thumb and index finger together - so pinch it together
    .
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  5. 5
    And then when we strung it on the downward strung you are trying to use the nail on your index finger
    .
    So use the nail on your index finger and when it gets longer it's get a lot easier.
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  6. 6
    Strung the nail on your index finger
    .
    Then on and upwards strung - use the nail on the thumb. We can make a C chord.
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  7. 7
    So that involves bending your wrist and moving your wrist from side to side and then rotating your wrist so that you present in first the nail of the thumb, and then the nail of the index finger
    .
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  8. 8
    You want to do and try to use the nail because if you just strum it away with the end of the finger, it will just going to rip chunks of flesh off after time - so use the nail because it's hard
    .
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  9. 9
    That's how to strum
    .
    You got to try and you need to to learn a lot of strumming patterns because a songs use lot of the same chords. It's the strumming pattern that really differentiates them. What really makes them stand out is the strumming pattern. So you are going to need to learn different strumming patterns - and this you can practice.
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  10. 10
    If you make a chord or you know a chord or watch one of the other videos on making chords, you can use an E chords, C chords or something quite simple when you use the E major chord
    .
    If you are after a chord, you can just strum the open strings.
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  11. 11
    We are going to make a quick demonstration, a very simple one of - Down, Down, Up Up, Down Down, Up Up
    .
    Try to strum every string - Down Down, Up Up, Down Down, Up Up. You may want to try doing that in series 4, because 4 beats is the normal speed - that way you play one note for 4 beats. It's just that a lot of songs written on 4 by 4 - they follow. So you go - Down Down, Up Up, Down Down, Up Up, Down Down, Up Up.
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  12. 12
    Here's some other patterns
    .
    We can just do - Down, Down, Down, Down, Down, Down, Down, Up! (Strumming the guitar)
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  13. 13
    This is something you guys have to play around with- Down Down, Up, Down Down, Up, Down Down, Up, Down Down, Up, and other patterns
    .
    Play around with that. See how you feel. If you can try to invent some of your own strumming patterns and work with them. Just get with the wrist moving, get those fingers moving.
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  14. 14
    You have been watching a video from a series on how to strum
    .
    I hope it is beneficial to you. You have any questions or suggestions please leave them on the section below where you also find links to the other videos in this series. Click on them and get to know some of the parts of guitar and keep on improving. You have been watching VisiHow, goodbye!
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Video: Understand and Play the Acoustic Guitar Strumming an Acoustic Guitar

Fingers Frets and Strings

Hello and welcome to VisiHow, and welcome to our series of videos on how to play the guitar for the total beginner.

Steps

  1. 1
  2. 2
    With your left hand, we are going to be fingering the fret board
    .
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  3. 3
    We have the first finger here - thumb, we have the index finger, the middle finger, the ring finger, and the pinky
    .
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  4. 4
    We are going to play the C chord
    .
    We place the index finger on the third fret of the second string.
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  5. 5
    Place the middle finger on the second fret of the third string
    .
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  6. 6
    Place the ring finger on the first fret of the fifth string
    .
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  7. 7
    This is how we want to position our fingers
    .
    Then, we have the pinky free. We want to add some other notes as well.
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  8. 8
    With our right hand, we are going to use the right hand to peck the strings so you can strum or pick if you are picking
    .
    It is very common to use the thumb for the first two strings. On the top two strings, you can use your thumb. Use the side of your thumb well. If you lack nails that are long enough, you can use your thumb.
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  9. 9
    Traditionally, you have four fingers and there are four other strings so you can use the index finger for the third string
    .
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  10. 10
    Middle finger for the fourth string
    .
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  11. 11
    Ring finger for the fifth string
    .
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  12. 12
    And pinky little finger for the sixth string
    .
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  13. 13
    In reality when you starting to learn, you ca tell that it is very difficult
    .
    You can concentrate more on using the thumb for the first three strings.
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  14. 14
    And then use the index finger and the middle finger
    .
    Afterwards you are trying to include the ring finger.
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  15. 15
    Try to focus more on those three fingers and use your little finger when you become more comfy
    .
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  16. 16
    You are going to be using your thumb
    .
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  17. 17
    Concentrate on this three for now
    .
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  18. 18
    Try to introduce the ring finger when you become more adept
    .
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  19. 19
    Next, we are going look at the fret board here - we have the fret board here
    .
    This raised part is the frets and are going to press down just behind it.
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  20. 20
    When you are using or playing the notes, you are going to position your finger just behind the fret board
    .
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  21. 21
    Not over here (on the front)
    .
    It does not make a good sound and you do not give as much pressure just behind the fret. Position right behind the fret to get more power and to get a better hold.
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  22. 22
    Each fret has an individual notes and you will need to learn all of this in order to know what exactly what you are planning when you are making combinations and try to create interesting sounds
    .
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  23. 23
    There is an easy way to do this and that is to know the name of the note of each string
    .
    From there, you can find how, exactly, what notes each individual fret is.
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  24. 24
    For example, the notes of A to G and in between each note in the fret there is one jump
    .
    There is a space between each notes on the fret board except for B and C and E and F. This sounds complicated but I am going to give you an example.
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  25. 25
    The top screen is E, there is no space between E
    .
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  26. 26
    F would be here
    .
    First fret of the first string - this would be F.
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  27. 27
    Then, go to G - there is one space between G
    .
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  28. 28
  29. 29
  30. 30
  31. 31
    G could be on the third fret of the top screen because there is one gap
    .
    Then G and then A - there is one gap.
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  32. 32
    So we go G, here
    .
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  33. 33
  34. 34
    There is one gap between A and B
    .
    There is no gap between B and C.
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  35. 35
    So we go B
    .
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  36. 36
  37. 37
    And there is one gap between C and D
    .
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  38. 38
  39. 39
  40. 40
    And there is one gap between D and E
    .
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  41. 41
  42. 42
  43. 43
    And then we have come around in full cycle
    .
    Frets one to twelve of the complete series of notes.
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  44. 44
    Once we move on about twelve, we repeat as if it was one
    .
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  45. 45
    You will need to learn all things in order to know exactly what you are playing
    .
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  46. 46
    Strings are also very important on the song you want to play
    .
    If you use nylon strings the sounds of chords is not so good. Steel strings have a lot better ring to them a lot clearer. Also, you decide if you want to use a plectrum or not. Plectrum gives you a better ring a better sound quality because your fingers are not deadening the sounds.
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  47. 47
    If you a plectrum you have less mobility, less chance of using your fingers and try nice to feel the strings
    .
    If you can grow your nails, you can use them to pluck the strings.
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  48. 48
    These are the things that are important to remember on how to always press the fret board - always press close to the fret
    .
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  49. 49
    Close to this (the fret)
    .
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  50. 50
    Do not press over here (front fret)
    .
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  51. 51
    Press right behind it (the fret) so you are trying to touch it and press down to finger the strings
    .
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  52. 52
    And what we talk about, where to place your fingers in the future
    .
    We are talking about index finger.
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  53. 53
    The middle finger
    .
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  54. 54
    The ring finger
    .
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  55. 55
    And the pinky - remember that
    .
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  56. 56
    I think that is everything for this video
    .
    If you have anymore questions or comments , or some information, you can leave your comments in the section below. You can also find the links to the other videos in this series so check them out and we can keep on progressing. You have been watching VisiHow, goodbye!
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Video: Understand and Play the Acoustic Guitar Fingers Frets and Strings

Learn Basic Chords

Hello, and welcome to VisiHow. Welcome to our series of videos on how to play the guitar for the absolute beginner.

Steps

  1. 1
    Now that we have walked on the basics of the guitar on our previous videos
    :
    the form of the guitar, the basic parts of it, fingers, finger movements and frets, we are not ready learning some chords.
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  2. 2
    We need to start learning the vocabulary of music
    .
    To do that, we are going to learn some chords from each of the different musical notes from A, B, C, D, E, F and G. We can learn chords for all of those notes.
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  3. 3
    The first group of chords we are going to examine is the E chord
    .
    The very popular and the very common E chord - a real staple of all music. Most popular songs you know will feature, probably, an E, C , G and D chords.
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  4. 4
    We are going to show you a couple of the most popular and most common to use
    .
    There is a large number of E chords ranging all over the fret board. We are going to focus on the three of the most popular.
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  5. 5
    So the first thing we are going to do is to take a middle finger and place it on the second fret of the fifth string - the A string
    .
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  6. 6
    Take the ring finger (this finger here) and place it on the second fret of the fourth string - the D string
    .
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  7. 7
    With the index finger, we are going to place that on the first fret of the third string - the G string
    .
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  8. 8
    So we have this pattern and now we can strung
    .
    When we strung with the E major chord, we strung every string. Okay from top to bottom.
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  9. 9
    You want to press down firmly on the strings and you want to try, as much as possible, to press just behind the fret board
    .
    To get as much grip and as much power that you can.
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  10. 10
    So one more time, the index finger on the first fret of the G string
    .
    The ring finger on the second fret of the D string and the middle finger on the second fret of the A string. Press down hard.
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  11. 11
    When you do that, pluck A string
    .
    If it rings true and clear, that means you have got the fingers on right position. It means that your guitar does not make any unusual sound. If you can hear that, that is definitely wrong. That's the E major.
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  12. 12
    To play the E minor, we hold our fingers in the same position but take the off the index finger
    .
    Just the two fingers, the middle finger and ring finger in the original position - just like the E major chords. This is E minor chord - check again. Everything rings true and clear.
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  13. 13
    I'll play the E minor chord and then I will play the E major chord and see if you can hear the difference
    .
    That's E major and E minor.
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  14. 14
    Next, we are going to show you the E7 chord - this is more of a "bluesy" sound
    .
    It is the same positions again - same positions as E major, all three fingers in there positions. put the index (finger) on the first fret of the G string. The ring finger on the second frets, D string and middle finger, second fret of the A string and the pinky, a little stretched maybe. This is something we have to do. Stretch the fingers to get that pinky moving on the third fret of the B string.
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  15. 15
    Now I am going to play individually and pluck each string
    .
    Does that sound good ? No. So it means your fingers are on the wrong position. It rings clearly and now let's strung it. This is about "bluesy" sound. That is the E7 - the "bluesy" sound.
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  16. 16
    You can also play the E7 by putting the middle finger on the second fret of the A string and the index finger back on the first fret of the G string
    .
    This is going back to blues ring.
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  17. 17
    In this video we have learned the E major
    .
    I will put all three fingers on the strings so you can see this.
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  18. 18
    The E minor which is the two fingers on the second frets of the A and D string
    .
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  19. 19
    The E7 chord which is the E major with the pinky on the third fret of the B string
    .
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  20. 20
    This has been a video on some of the most common popular E chords
    .
    Try practicing them at home. Get a feel for them and see what can you create. If you have any questions or suggestions about this video please leave them in the section below where you also find the link of the previous videos and other videos in this series. Learn some more chords and learn some other stuffs. Thank you for watching VisiHow, goodbye!
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Categories : Music

Recent edits by: Eng, Crystal, Jen M

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