Guitars Glossary: A
12/8 groove: The slowest blues pattern in which the bass note plays on beats one and three and the chords play on beats two and four.
12-bar blues: By far the most popular form for the blues, created by following a 12-bar blues pattern of three lines per verse, with the first line repeated.
7th chord: A chord created from the altered or unaltered first, third, fifth, and seventh notes of a scale; 7th chords have a complex, bluesy sound.
accent: A musical notation (>) indicating that a note should be played louder than the rest of the notes.
accidentals: A musical notation indicating that a note should be played a half or whole step higher or lower; accidentals include flats (b), double flats (bb), sharps (#), double sharps (x), and naturals.
acoustic-electrics: A type of hybrid guitar that is an acoustic guitar with built-in pickups and electronics.
active electronics: Electric guitar electronics that have a built-in power source.
alternate picking: A combination of upstrokes and downstrokes that enables the guitarist to play faster and is the key for playing fast leads smoothly.
alternation: A musical pattern in which you alternate between playing the melody and bass parts one at a time instead of at the same time.
arpeggio: The notes of a chord played one after the other instead of simultaneously.
articulation: The way in which a musician plays and connects notes to create a distinct tonal quality, as well as distortion of the tone.
attack: The initial distinguishing sound of a note.