Entries Tagged as 'Tips'

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!

Creating Your Own Electric Guitar

The idea of this article on making your own electric guitar is to give you a real, practical idea of the magnitude of the job and the skills, tools and raw materials needed to make your own electric guitar. The original electric guitar was a railway sleeper with strings. The designer, Les Paul, finally marketed his invention with a guitar shape because he felt that was what people expected of an electric guitar, not because any particular shape was really necessary to make music. One thing you need to get straight on now is you will not save money by making your own guitar. If you want a cheap electric guitar, there’s one with your name on it at your nearest music store.

So if you fancy yourself as a designer, you could try making an electric guitar to your own specifications but you will need certain materials to work with. The first thing you will need is a love of working with wood. The second is an arsenal of power tools like drills, routers, saws, and fiddly bits of hardware. Your environment is also crucial. You will need a workspace which is not too hot or cold or wet or dry!

When you design your home made electric guitar, you will need to know how long your neck is going to be and how far apart your frets will be. You will also have a choice of the basic shape of the head of your guitar – the part that holds the tuning pegs.

You probably already know that a pickup near the neck gives a deeper sound than a pickup close to the bridge. The placement and configuration of the pickups on an electric guitar is a science in itself.

Solid body electric guitars are usually made from maple, ash, mahogany, alder, basswood or nut because they possess proven sound qualities for guitar manufacturing. You will need to buy your wood from a sawmill in lengths rather larger than needed for guitar making, and you will need to cut the wood down to size before making your guitar. You will also need hardware like machine heads, pick guards, fret wire, bridge and whammy bar mechanism. You will also need hardware if you use a bolt-on neck.

For the electronic parts of your electric guitar, you will need pickups – single coil or humbucker, shielding to cut down hum and associated knobs, nuts and grommets.

The first job in making your own electric guitar is making a template of your instrument from plywood. The template is your exact pattern for your finished guitar, and needs to be crafted with care. If you find yourself cutting corners at this stage you may as well stop this project and continue with the home brewing you started two winters ago.

To finish off this short essay, I should mention that there exists another solution for people wanting to make their own electric guitar – the electric guitar kit. As an example, the Yamaha EG-112PF Electric Guitar Kit contains: EGP112 Electric Guitar 2 Single coil pickups 1 Humbucking pickup Vintage vibrato system 5 position pickup switch Tremolo bar Master Volume and Master Tone controls Maple neck Chrome closed tuning hardware Bolt-on neck construction Rosewood fingerboard Basswood body No coil split Scale length: 25-1/2″ (648 mm) Nut width: 1-5/8″ (41mm) Radius: 13-3/4 (350 mm) Frets: 22 Color: Black with white pick guard Guitar cable included GA10 Amplifier 7 watts of power 5″ speaker Volume, Tone Bass, Distortion / Clean controls Headphone jack Dimensions: 10.4″ (w) x 10.0″ (h) x 6.4″ (d) Complete Starter Kit Electronic tuner — YT120 Special Yamaha gig bag Extra set of strings Picks Strap with Yamaha logo String winder Capo Guitar method book. I found it on Amazon while looking through 1,320,000 results for a Google search on “electric guitar kits”! Best of luck!