backphrasing: A rhythmic alteration in which the melody falls behind the beat.

ball: The thick ring at one end of a guitar's steel string.

bar line: The vertical lines that separate music into measures.

bar; measure: A basic unit of musical time containing a specific number of beats.

barre: The combination of notes that sound when a guitarist presses down two or more strings at once with a single left-hand finger.

barre chords: A type of chord that has only fretted notes and is able to move to any position on the neck of your guitar.

bass bout: The lower, wider part of the body of a guitar.

beam; ligature: In musical notation, a beam can be used to connect a group of notes (eighth notes or shorter) that would normally each be flagged.

bend: A guitar effect in which a note's pitch is raised by stretching the ringing string while it is sounding.

bend and release; bend in rhythm; measured bend: A bending effect in which a note is played, then bent without repicking, and then returned to its original tone (unbent) without repicking.

Bo Diddley beat: A popular R&B rhythm that uses left-hand muting, syncopated strumming, scratches, and sounded notes to create an implied syncopation effect.

boom-chick pattern; cut shuffle: A rhythm pattern created by alternating notes and chords.

boost: An amplifier control that you can use to create a distorted or lead sound.

bourrée: A 17th-century French up-tempo dance.

breaking angle: The angle that is created by the string and the tuning post when a string winds down the tuning post; the sharper the angle, the more sustain is produced.

bridge: 1. A contrasting section of music that is used to separate similar sections. 2. The plate that anchors the strings to the body of a guitar.

bridge springs: A set of metal springs that pull a floating bridge in the opposite direction of the strings, thereby holding the bridge in balance.

brightness: The clarity of sound produced.

buzzing: A usually unwanted distortion of a guitar sound created when a string vibrates against the fret wire.