Entries Tagged as 'General'

Buyers Guide To Electric Guitars

Live rock concerts were the rage in the 70’s and they are still the rage. The essence of rock music does not just lie with the lyrics; it also lies with the electric guitar and the various sounds that it can produce. There are so many kids across the block who would give up anything to play like Ritchie Blackmore, Mark Knopfler, David Gilmour, John Petrucci, Steve Vai, Kirk hammett, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Carlos Santana, Jimmy Page etc. These men are not just some of the best guitarists of their times, they are legends.

Now if you are interested in learning how to play the guitar then the first thing you will need to buy is a guitar. Most people start with an acoustic and graduate to the electric guitar. It is quite difficult for anyone to choose the right electric guitar since there are hundreds of models and several brands out there in the market. If you are buying an electric guitar then you will need to also buy amplifiers, pick-ups, pick, tuner etc.

Electric guitars are available in a lot of variety, colors, and designs with the aerodynamic designs being one of the most popular. Don’t go for the first electric guitar you see. You need to look around a bit and check out the prices and models before you buy one. In fact, one of the best ways to choose a guitar is by the brand or by the style. Here’s our take on the four important styles:

Stratocaster
This certainly is a show stealer and has a typical style. The most famous is the red and white color combination, which was extensively used by Mark Knopfler of Dire Straits. The Stratocaster is from Fender and has a neck bolted to the guitar body. Apart from this, it has double cutaway sides, 22 frets accompanied by a tremolo system or the wammy bar and three single-coil pickups. Fender designed the first Stratocaster in the early 50’s. Some of the popular designs include:

1. Fender Deluxe Stratocaster: approx $600
2. Fender American Deluxe Stratocaster HSS Electric Guitar in Rosewood: Approx $1200
3. Fender Standard Stratocaster Electric Guitar in Maple: Approx $400
4. Fender Standard Stratocaster Electric Guitar in Rosewood: Approx $600
5. Fender Stratocaster Eric Johnson Signature model: Approx $1800

Telecaster
The Telecaster is another creative instrument from Fenders. It is more than just a guitar it is a complete orchestra. It is a solid body electric guitar and comprises of dual pick-ups. The first Telecaster was manufactured by Leo Fender in the 1940’s and has a single cutaway body. It doesn’t have the tremolo or wammy bar but has two different single-coil pickups. Some of the popular Telecaster models include:

1. Fender American Telecaster HS guitar: $900-$1000
2. Fender Standard Telecaster Electric Guitar: $400-$500
3. Fender 63 Telecaster Relic Solid Body Electric: $2500-$3000
4. Fender 72 Telecaster Custom Electric Guitar: $700-$800

Les Paul
This is a classic guitar that has been designed by Gibson. The salient feature of a Les Paul’s is its set neck construction, which means there are no joints or bolts. The body is a single cutaway and rounded. It is equipped with two humbucker pickups as well as a raised scratch-plate. If you want to play distorted sound then the Les Paul’s will provide you with a varied range of such sound. Some of the legends who use the Les Pauls include Eric Clapton, Kirk Hammett (Metallica) and Slash (ex-G’N’R). Some of the famous Les Paul models include:

1. Les Paul Custom Electric Guitar: $3000-$3500
2. 1959 Les Paul Standard Guitar: $5500-$6000
3. Les Paul Vintage Mahogany Electric Guitar: $700-$800
4. Les Paul Classic Electric Guitar: $1800-$1900

Gibson
Gibson is one of the greatest brands in music and all their guitar models are classic and can’t be compared to any. Gibson was actually started in 1902 by Orville Gibson and has been responsible for giving the world some of the best acoustic and electric guitars. Some of the famous models include the arch-top Gibson L5 model, the ES-150 electric, Gibson Explorer, Flying V etc. Some of the legends who have played a Gibson or are still using it include Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin), Ace Frehley (KISS), Frank Zappa, and Toni Iommi (Black Sabbath) to name a few. Some of the popular Gibson models include:

1. Gibson Flying V Electric Guitar: $500-$600
2. Gibson SG 61 Classic Electric Guitar: $1500-$1600
3. Gibson Faded SG Special Electric Guitar: $550-$600
4. Gibson Explorer Pro Electric Guitar: $1100-$1200

These are the best brands in electric guitar. The other aspects that will help you to pick up a guitar include fretboard, the pick-ups, and the body. Full-bodied guitars are normally preferred as they can produce some of the best sounds that you will ever get to hear.

Electric Guitar For Beginners

Electric guitars have made their home in our universe. There are even classical pieces composed for electric guitar. This is a new kind of musical instrument. Not only is the sound amplified by electronics but the sound itself is MADE by electronics. Can just anybody learn to make music on this twenty-first century instrument?

Well first of all it is best to start to learn using a nylon string acoustic guitar. Steel strings are rough on the fingers when you are just learning how to play. So whether you get it from ebay or the local music store, you need an acoustic guitar that’s halfway decent. It doesn’t need to be expensive, just playable.

When it comes to buying an electric guitar, you can easily start off with one of the less expensive models. You can get the buzz from playing a real honest to goodness electric guitar on whatever no-frills Stratocaster copy your music store has, and it will get through your initial guitar playing experiences.

If there’s one single lesson that all guitar students of all styles of music need to learn, it’s TAKE IT EASY – SLOW DOWN. The music will still be there, you don’t have to rush out to meet it. If you have a tendency to go too fast, to try to force your body to do chord changes before the muscles have learnt them properly, ask yourself how you want to be sounding in a year’s time. Because if you don’t slow down when you are learning you are going to be sounding like a hat full of baby seals in one year – and probably twenty years time!

An important aspect of learning to play electric guitar is how you are going to be holding the guitar during your long hours of practice. If you do not pay attention to this stuff now, you could end up with back, neck and shoulder problems later from straining your muscles and skeleton.

Now you have your guitar, and of course a decent amplifier. A practice amp is good for use when playing near loved ones if you want to remain loved yourself. Another good idea is to get some kind of guitar effects program for your computer but be aware that some of them can be very hard on your computer’s resources.

A tuner and a metronome are essentials. These are two bits of equipment which are part of the discipline of electric guitar playing. Get into the habit of tuning your guitar from time to time during practice sessions – you might be surprised how far out you can get without being aware of it! While you are first learning how to play electric guitar you probably won’t be able to do too much jamming with friends until you develop a familiarity with your instrument. So once you feel you have gotten the hang of a song or a riff, try it out with the metronome. As slowly as you need to; you are not doing anybody any favors by rushing.

Do you need a teacher for electric guitar? Can you get all you need from books in your local music store or off the internet? It’s true that looking for a person who can teach you what you need to know in a way that you can handle it is a bit of a trial. It’s like any relationship, a lot better without the other person, but what can you do? If you want to try learning without a teacher then make Google your friend. If you are not used to using search engines, just type any questions into the search box in your own words, and the results you get will at least point you in the right direction. Start by looking for guitar forums. This is where you will find people like yourself who have questions together with people who have answers.

There are many ways online to learn to play guitar, some involve buying packages of videos and books which will be delivered to your house. Some give the less expensive option of downloading the videos and instructions. For the most part these guitar teaching methods are excellent. Another way to go is an online course where you can interact with your teacher and ask questions by email or on a forum. This is by far a better way to go because it can’t be quite as easily forgotten about as a course that consists of physical goods or computer files.

As the distinction between electric guitars and synthesizers becomes less distinct the novice electric guitarist gets more opportunities to reproduce the sound of his or her favorite artist. But as your guitar skills expand you will have a world of electronic music to play with. Enjoy!