Guitar - Styles

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What is Carter-Style Guitar Playing?

Carter-style playing is a guitar picking style named after the famous Carter family, whose members included June Carter, “Mother” Maybelle, and “Uncle” A.P. To play Carter style, you play the melody on [more…]

How to Play Travis Picking on Guitar

One of the most popular fingerstyle folk guitar techniques is known as Travis picking. By learning how to use the Travis picking technique on guitar, you can add interest when you play not only folk music [more…]

How to Create a Travis Guitar Picking Pattern

The Travis picking pattern is one of the most popular folk guitar techniques; however, creating a Travis picking pattern is fairly complex. Create different Travis patterns by varying the timing that you [more…]

Guitar Tablature: “Romanza”

“Romanza” is a simple, arpeggiated, piece of guitar sheet music in the classical style that gives you an opportunity to accentuate the melody notes with rest strokes [more…]

Guitar Tablature: "Freight Train"

"Freight Train" is a short folk guitar piece that employs a technique known as a bass run. This technique is a single-note line — played by the thumb — that leads to the next chord and serves to break [more…]

Guitar Tablature: "House of the Rising Sun"

"The House of the Rising Sun" is traditional American folk song that tells the tale of a wasted life in New Orleans. The most famous version was recorded in 1964 by the English rock group The Animals. [more…]

Guitar Tablature: "The Cruel War Is Raging"

"The Cruel War is Raging" is an American folk song about a soldier during the Civil War. To play “The Cruel War Is Raging” on guitar, you need to know how to play the “lullaby” pattern; how to finger basic [more…]

Guitar Tablature: "All My Trials"

The song "All My Trials" was a social protest folk song during 1950s and 1960s. To play “All My Trials” on guitar, you need to know how to play a Travis-style accompaniment; how to play hammer-ons; and [more…]

Guitar Tablature: "Chicago Shuffle"

B.B. King once said, “I have a right to sing the blues,” and if you’re ready to try playing a couple of authentic blues songs, you have that right too! As you first attempt to play the [more…]

Guitar Tablature: "Mississippi Mud"

"Mississippi Mud" is an old blues song that was first recorded by Bing Crosby back in 1927. This song features many acoustic blues concepts: E pentatonic minor scale in open position, steady bass notes [more…]

Guitar Tablature: "The Articulate Blues"

“The Articulate Blues” is a short guitar solo, in the form of a 12-bar blues, that employs all the forms of articulation. Learning how to play "The Articulate Blues [more…]

Guitar Tablature: "Power Play"

Learning how to play "Power Play" on guitar will give you a chance to practice and demonstrate a four-bar rock progression using only power chords. Countless rock songs use this progression, including [more…]

Guitar Tablature: "We Wish You a Merry Christmas"

The song "We Wish You a Merry Christmas" dates all the way back to the 16th century, but it is just as timeless as ever. Learning how to play "We Wish You a Merry Christmas [more…]

Guitar Tablature: "The First Noël"

“The First Noël” is a Christmas carol that you probably know, so you can use your familiarity with it to help ensure that you’re playing the song correctly on guitar — hitting the right pitches and in [more…]

Guitar Tablature: "God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen"

Despite the fact that “God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen” is in a minor key, it’s quite a spirited and uplifting Christmas tune. When you look at the guitar tablature below, you'll see that the key signature [more…]

Guitar Tablature: "Allegro" by G.F. Handel

If you know how to play your melodic minor scales, you won't have any problem learning to play Handel's "Allegro" on guitar. The opening statement in this piece is just an ascending scale, although it [more…]

Guitar Tablature: "The Three Ravens"

If you’re old enough, you may recognize “The Three Ravens” from the Peter, Paul, and Mary version of this folk song. Playing "The Three Ravens" on guitar gives you a chance to practice your harmonic minor [more…]

How to Properly Hold a Classical Guitar

To sound authentic when you play classical guitar, you must play it in the classical style. That means you have to follow the specific rules about how you hold the guitar, position your hands, and play [more…]

How to Position Your Right Hand for Classical Guitar

To sound authentic when you play classical guitar, you must play it in the classical style. After posture, learning how to position your right-hand is the most critical consideration for achieving a true [more…]

How to Position Your Left Hand for Classical Guitar

Classical guitarists play their instruments quite differently from that of any other guitar style. When you're learning how to position your left hand for fingering frets in the classical style, try to [more…]

How to Play Free Strokes on Classical Guitar

Follow-through is just as important with plucking a guitar string as it is with golf or bowling. By controlling the way your finger follows through after plucking a string, you can learn to play the [more…]

How to Play Rest Strokes in Classical Guitar Music

Follow-through is just as important with plucking a guitar string as it is with golf or bowling. By controlling the way your finger follows through after plucking a string, you can learn to play the [more…]

Arpeggio-Style Classical Guitar Exercise

Most classical guitar pieces are played in either an arpeggio style or a contrapuntal style. To play classical guitar in arpeggio style, you hold chords with the left hand while plucking the strings in [more…]

Contrapuntal-Style Classical Guitar Exercise

Most classical guitar pieces are played in either an arpeggio style or a contrapuntal style. When you play contrapuntal classical guitar music, you are playing two or more melodies [more…]

How to Get a Shuffle Feel on Rhythm Guitar

The shuffle is an important rhythm feel used extensively in rock guitar. A shuffle is a lilting eighth-note sound created by dividing the beat into two unbalanced halves, a long note followed by a short [more…]

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