Rhythm Guitar LessonPosted by Mike Schumacher
Music is one of the most powerful tools we have as humans. It can be music you like, or even need to know how to play, but it’s more likely that if you are listening to music, you already know some pieces.
For example, when your song comes on the radio, you probably recognize some parts of the lyrics and/or melody. If you really wanted to learn something about music, then you could always go back and listen to those songs again and try to figure out the structure, the notes, and the rhythm!
This article will take you through the basics of playing guitar using a rhythmic approach. This means instead of thinking about which note goes here, and this line has an accent, you focus more on what time signature the piece is in and where the feet fall within the measure.
Get your guitar in tune
Tuning is one of the most important parts of playing any instrument. Your notes will not sound right unless they are in tune! Luckily, tuning guitars is pretty easy if you know how.
To test your string’s pitch, use an audio tool such as YouTube or Spotify. Search for something that sounds like a note, and then scroll down to see what key it is in. Then, read up on what octave this note is (the number system we discussed before) and work out which strings you should be pulling to make this same tone.
You can also check out our article: How To Make Use Of A Treble Clef For The First Time. This has information about using the treble clef to find the exact tonal center of a string.
Practice playing along with a recording
A great way to learn how to play guitar is by practicing using recordings or songs as lessons! This is called practice via reinforcement. As you practice, you are listening to the music while also learning the notes and patterns of the song.
You can do this for minutes or hours — it does not matter. Just make sure your device has good quality sound so you can hear everything well and know what part of the song things go into.
Practice via reinforcement is very effective since you are still having fun while you are educating yourself about the instrument and the parts of the song. Plus, you get quick results too, as the song will help you remember how to play it!
There are many ways to do this tricky practice technique. Some people use headphones and earbuds to listen to the song they want to learn, while others use a computer or phone app that helps them easily access the song.
Learn to read music
Now that you have learned some basics like notes, numbers, and names of positions, it is time to learn how to read music!
Music theory is an excellent way to test your knowledge because it requires no spoken language. You can easily pick up theory by reading books or courses online. There are many great sources where you can learn theory for free as well!
There are several ways to learn about theory. Some good resources include: teaching yourself through YouTube videos, using flash cards, and practicing with others. The best method will depend on what level you are already at and what concepts stick so that you can move forward more quickly.
Once you have mastered the basic theories such as major, minor, and diatonic chords, scales, and modes, you can advance to more advanced topics. These include intervals, tritone substitutions, parallel motion, and more.
Mix and match songs with your favorite artists
It is very common to learn an artist’s most famous song, or even their whole repertoire! This is definitely a good idea because these are some of their strongest pieces.
But what if there was another song that you loved just as much, if not more? You could choose this new song to be part of your repertoire!
And before we talk about how to start teaching yourself rhythm guitar, let us discuss why it is so important to have at least a basic understanding of timing.
Timing is one of the hardest things for beginner musicians to pick up. There are many different types of timing in music, but all of them relate back to something called “the meter.” A metrical unit is like a base number that makes time intervals longer or shorter depending on whether they are syncopated (time-shifted) or diatonic (key oriented).
A key color is any specific note within a piece that becomes associated with the lyrics or theme of the song. For example, the first line of The Beatles’ classic song Hey Jude contains the word “start.” Therefore, the B string becomes the key color in this song since it starts the melody. Many people use this technique when practicing the bass line of a song to make it easier to recognize.
Another way to develop timing is by studying meters.
Become a fluent player
Now that you have learned some of the basics, it is time to move onto more advanced concepts!
As we have seen so far, playing guitar doesn’t actually mean too much when it comes down to just intervals and rhythm.
Intervals are definitely important to know, but being able to mix them up in a song or piece is what really makes a guitarist shine.
Rhythm is also very important to learn, as I mentioned before, and can be applied to any genre. Whether it be rock, pop, country, jazz — you get the idea!
Both of these things take practice, which is why there isn’t a quick fix for your new skills. It takes hours and hours of repetition to truly master anything beyond its basic level.
But don’t worry, you are not going to be left behind! You will always have this book to return to over and over again until you feel like you totally nailed those lessons.
Take guitar lessons
If you are already reading this article, then chances are you have made your decision to learn how to play the guitar. You have determined that you want to invest in yourself by learning how to play the instrument and/or music!
Now comes the hard part- finding a good teacher for you to follow along with while you learn. Finding a great guitarist can be tricky at times, but there are ways to do it.
Here are some tips about what to look for when choosing who will teach you the art of songwriting. Make sure to compare teachers before picking one – you’ll get the best quality from them all!
1) How well does this person communicate?
This is very important as you will be spending quite a bit of time with this professional musician. They will be teaching you something they know, so they must be able to explain things clearly.
You want to make sure they talk efficiently and easily, without sounding too formal or complicated. A well trained communicator is someone who uses appropriate grammar, vocabulary, and tone.
They should also listen carefully to understand what you say, and reply back using similar language. As students, we feel insecure sometimes, and this may show. Your teacher must be able to reduce tension and create an environment where you both feel comfortable.
2) Is this person organized?
As mentioned above, you will be investing in their personal life by going to classes with them every week.
Learn to sing along with your favorite songs
A lot of people start playing guitar by learning how to play simple chords and strumming patterns. While this is a great way to begin, it will not help you develop rhythm skills!
Rhythm is more than just knowing what notes are being played at any given time-it is also determining when those notes should be pressed down on the string or picked. It is about timing!
There are many ways to learn how to do this. Some say karate style moves are helpful in developing rhythmic accuracy, while others suggest tapping or stepping foot styles are better for beginners that want to quickly improve their rhythm game.
Whatever method you choose, keep doing them! No matter how advanced you become as a guitarist, starting off with basic rhythms can only benefit you in the long run.
Learn to read and write music
A lot of people include rhythm in their musical repertoire, but few know how to actually play it! It’s easy to pick up drum patterns or bass lines, but being able to decipher what notes make up a rhythmic figure is more difficult.
Music theory goes way beyond counting to the fast tune! This article will teach you some basic concepts for reading music and learning the basics of playing the guitar with a steady beat.
There are three main components that make up this lesson: note names, major scales, and minor scales.
The Jam Addict team is a revolving door of writers who care about music, its effects on culture, and giving aspiring artists tools and knowledge to be inspired and keep on creating.
If you have any questions or concerns or just want to drop us a line, don’t hesitate to contact us! We always appreciate the feedback.