Guitar Lesson 1

The section "Essential tools for the serious guitar student" is a series of guitar lesson worksheets that teach us chords, scales, and arpeggios which are essential for playing the guitar. Each lesson gives us the scales and arpeggios with the chord that shares the same root note. By learning to associate the scales, arpeggios, and chords together, our ability to improvise and understand the guitar in general will improve immensely.

All of the chords, scales, and arpeggios in these exercises are written for every key. The lowest note in every example is the root note. The root note is the note that identifies the chord, scale, and arpeggio. All the root notes in lesson 2-16 have the root note on the 6th string. All the roots in lesson 17-31 are on the 5th string. Therefore, to identify the roots, we need to be very familiar with the notes on the 5th and 6th string. To better acquaint ourselves with the notes on the fretboard visit Learning the notes on the guitar neck.

All the fingerings are included in the exercises. These are the fingerings that are logical to me but they are not the only fingerings. The main thing to remember when deciding which finger to use is economy. Do things the easy way. However, that doesn't mean not using your pinky finger because you are more comfortable using the ring finger. Train that pinky! You have it, so use it.

Understanding intervals is absolutely essential to master the guitar. We need to be able to identify the intervals when playing scales, chords, and arpeggios. For more on intervals, visit How to improvise on guitar.

Learning is a joy, so enjoy!
Brian Turner

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