One of the most common problems that beginner guitarists experience is the "fat finger" issue. I put it into quotation marks, because 95% of the time, it’s not a real problem, just a newbie thing.

fat finger guitar Israel Kamakawiwo

Think your fingers are too fat for guitar?

No matter whether they have short and chubby fingers, or long and skinny ones, beginners will always have difficulty fretting a note without touching the adjacent strings. This is perfectly normal, so before you quit altogether or start playing bass because of your "fat fingers", you need to know one thing:

Your fingers are fine and perfectly sized for the guitar neck. Really!

This issue is caused by the fact that the beginner’s hand and fingers are simply not used to fretting chords. Granted, there’s not much space in between the strings to fool around, but if Johnny Hilland, and this guy, and of course the awesome Israel Kamakawiwo'ole can play well, you should be able to manage as well.

The most common causes of the chubby finger syndrome holding beginner guitarists back are the following: Read more

Learning easy guitar songs is one of the best ways for beginner guitarists to practice the techniques they learn, without the practice sessions becoming tedious. Learning individual guitar techniques in their purity day after day will get, well, boring after a few days. But not when you practice through learning songs.

Learn Electric Guitar Songs!

Learn Electric Guitar Songs!

The advantage of learning to play guitar songs is evident. Novice guitarists start learning the guitar because they want to be able to play the songs they love listening to, this is a general aim of most people who decide to pick up the instrument. If they were to practice, for example, the individual lead guitar techniques day in and day out for weeks, they probably won't stick with the guitar as long as it takes to learn the given techniques, since they won't get any satisfaction out of practicing.

You get satisfaction out of actually playing the guitar, and there are loads of guitar songs for beginners. Here are 2 of the most popular video tutorials we have in our database of electric guitar lessons:

Read more

Learning to play guitar via guitar learning courses is a viable alternative to getting personal lessons nowadays for a number of reasons. Not only is it much cheaper, but the multimedia elements found in the best online and DVD guitar courses make learning music more accessible than ever. If you're searching for a way to learn guitar from home, read on!

Learning guitar at home?

Learning guitar at home?

There are several types of guitar learning packages available on the net and in stores, some of them are good, some of them are not. I've decided to split the courses up into 3 sections, depending on your needs, budget and general type of course:

  • Online guitar courses
  • DVD guitar courses
  • Downloadable guitar courses

Read more

The question lots of people ask me when they start thinking about learning to play guitar is, "How long will it take me?"

Well, it depends on several things, not just how talented you are. Sure, having a talent for music and a good ear will help you achieve results, but in the long run, the guitarist that practices diligently and in the correct way will win over the lazier, yet more "talented" musician. Why?

Read more

Learning the piano to some capacity is something that almost everyone can do. It takes some time and patience, as well as dedication, but ultimately builds confidence and adds a skill that can be used to impress people with beautiful piano music. After hundreds of years, the piano is an instrument that is still used today to create some of the most popular and inspiring tunes, and seeking help for learning it is easier than ever. The Internet is filled with websites that provide instruction for people that want to learn the piano and advance their knowledge and ability.

Piano Music

Piano Music

Basic lessons are available, often for free, and it’s quite simple to read up on basic techniques such as correct posture and hand positioning. The layout of the notes is the most essential information to learn, and then the piano music as a whole. Lessons on reading the musical staff are available in detail on many sites; just search for them online and there will be several websites to choose from. It’s just a question of what formula makes it easier to learn individually. Detailed instruction on identifying musical notes, how to play chords on the piano, how to read sheet music, and how to advance piano playing techniques are readily available online.

Read more

With online video guitar lessons becoming a perfectly viable alternative to personal lessons, the cost of guitar lessons have significantly decreased for beginner guitarists. While personal guitar lessons cost between $30-$50 per 45 minute session, you can sign up on a number of high quality websites and receive online lessons for next to nothing.

Online or private lessons?

Online or private lessons?

The result is evident, huge savings for beginner guitarists. Lets take an example, where an absolute beginner starts taking weekly lessons, and does so for 5 months. At an average rate of $40 per session with a private guitar teacher, expenses add up very quickly. The accumulated price of these guitar lessons would be $800.

In contrast, you can get super high quality online lessons at a fraction of the cost. Be careful, as there are a lot of bogus sites out there charging money for really bad content, but the following sites offer top notch, high quality material:

Read more

One of the most common questions I get from new guitar players is to answer the epic question once and for all, and decide whether

Is it best for beginners to learn on an acoustic guitar or an electric guitar?

Electric or acoustic?

Electric or acoustic?

This is a very interesting question that causes many disagreements between us, guitar teachers as well.

There are advantages and disadvantages of learning on either type of guitar, so I will try to list them all, and after you get a chance to read the pros and cons of both sides.

I'll give my opinion as well, but don't skip forward, please. Read the article in full, I want you to see things objectively before you hear my subjectivity.

Let's start off with the differences between the 2 types of guitar, as the pros and cons derive from here.

What are the differences between acoustic and electric guitars?

As a newbie to the world of guitars, you may be wondering just how are electric guitars different from acoustic ones.

Electric guitar Acoustic guitar
Body Solid body which requires electric amplification to produce sound. Hollow body. The vibration from the strings vibrates the entire guitar. The resonation is passed into the air inside the body, where it resonates and is naturally amplified to become sound, which exits through the soundhole.
Size and weight Generally smaller, but much heavier than acoustic guitars. Larger than electric guitars, because the body has to be relatively larger for the sound waves to get amplified. However, they are usually lighter, since they are hollow.
Neck Usually slightly thinner, strings seem closer together. Usually a bit thicker, strings are further apart. Classical guitars have even wider necks.
Strings Thinner, lighter steel strings, easy on the fingers. Strings on electric guitars don't need to be heavy, because the sound is amplified. The thin strings make lead guitar techniques, like vibratos and bends easy. Heavy steel strings that need to vibrate stronger, therefore they are harder to hold down. Lead guitar techniques are difficult to carry out. Lighter nylon strings are also used on acoustic guitars, which are easier to play, but have a more subdued tone.
String action Since the strings are thinner than on the acoustic guitar, they don't need that much space to resonate. Because of this, the string action can be set lower, meaning the strings are closer to the neck. This makes them easier to fret. The thicker strings on acoustic guitars need more room to vibrate, so they are a bit further from the neck. This makes them harder to hold down.
Tone Thanks to the multiple pickups, the tone and volume knobs on the guitar, plus the effects you can apply with an amp, the tonal possibilities of electric guitars are endless. Acoustic guitars without amplification have a single tone. There are tonal differences between the different acoustic guitars as well, which depends on the materials the acoustic guitar is manufactured with and the size of the guitar.
Music Since electric guitars are amplified and effects are added to create a final tone, you can basically play any type of music with them (other than classical and folk). The lack of amplification limits the use of acoustic guitars to music where the clean acoustic tone sounds good. These include country, classical, blues, pop, folk.

Read more

Rock & Roll is not as popular as it used to be, but lots of people still love listening to it. If you're one of them, you'll be happy to know that we have several Rock n Roll guitar lessons on TheGuitarLesson.com, which will have you playing these songs in no time.

rock n roll guitar lessonsJust as a primer, Rock and Roll started developing in the late '40s, early '50s. Initially, the lead instruments were either the piano or saxophone, which was later replaced by the guitar as the lead instrument. True Rock n Roll is played with a lead and a rhythm electric guitar, an electric bass guitar, and a drum kit. And of course, the singer's voice.

Rock and Roll wasn't just about music, it influenced lifestyle, people's attitudes, dance style and fashion as well, set by the most famous Rock & Roll legends, such as: Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly, Little Richard, Chuck Berry, The Beatles, etc.

Read more

The 7th generation of the famous tablature-editor software has been long in the works, and it is better than ever. Guitar Pro 6 was already a huge step forward from GP5, which might be the reason GP7 took so long to develop.

Just so you know, GP5 was released in 2005, and GP6 in 2010, GP7 in 2017, and the newest version, GP7.5 in 2019.

What is Guitar Pro?

Guitar Pro 7.5 is a software tool that allows its user to edit and play sheet music and tablature for the guitar, bass or other types of stringed instruments. In addition to that, it can also be used to edit sheet music for other types of instruments, such as keyboards or drums.

If you are looking for a tool that will get your playing to the next level, or you want to compose your own songs, look no further than Guitar Pro. Not only will your playing improve, but you will also develop as a composer.

GP 7.5 is available on Windows, macOS in its software form. You can also get the iPhone and Android version of Guitar Pro as a standalone app, which is not included in the price of the software.

The main interface

When you first fire up the software, you may be overwhelmed by all the buttons and tabs. It's very easy to get used to though. There are a lot of things you can do with Guitar Pro, but everything is laid out as intuitively as possible in my opinion.

This is the main interface of Guitar Pro.

guitar-pro-7-01

The screen is split up into several main areas.

At the top, you have your main controls.

guitar-pro-7-04

On the left side of the interface, you will find everything you need to compose a song. This is where you interact with the music sheet and adjust note duration, add guitar techniques, and so on. All of these techniques make a difference in how the sound engine renders the song. This also lets you grow as a guitarist, since there might be techniques here you haven't even heard of before.

guitar-pro-7-05

On the other side of the interface, you have the Song and Track Inspector. This panel allows you to adjust the written attributes of the song (title, band, copyright info, etc.), as well as the tonal attributes of each track (tuning, change guitar type, add effects pedals, etc.)

guitar-pro-7-06

On the bottom, you will find the tracks of the song. You can mute any given track, change its volume, panning, and see when it is played within the song overall.

guitar-pro-7-07

Most important features of Guitar Pro

Guitar Pro is very versatile, Arobas (the developer) has really fine-tuned this version of the program.

Here are the features that you will use most often.

Tablature editing

There is nothing quite like the array of notes and tabs that you can create and work with on Guitar Pro. It is a multipurpose tool to learn how to play the instrument and to write music of your own. It has every type of music notation, plus it also includes attributes that make it the perfect tool to advance your knowledge of the guitar. These special attributes include fingering, bends, slaps, hammer-ons, etc. You can select all of these guitar techniques and hear how they sound after pressing play.

There is not a single type of music that you will not be able to write on this program.

Aspiring songwriters can add their lyrics to the tracks with ease.

One of the prime features of this software is the ability to add chords charts directly into the score. This way you can help and collaborate with other musicians.

Tabs/music sheet player

Packed with instruments of every kind, Guitar Pro 7 gives you ultimate control over the arrangement of your musical composition.

Once you get familiar with the simple and effective features of this program, you will be able to hear what your mind has created in the shortest time imaginable. Of course, nothing tops playing music live, but Guitar Pro 7 comes as close to having your music played live as possible.

Working with a software like this one will allow you to adjust your mixtape up to the last important detail.

Speed tools and looper

You can adjust the tempo of the track with magnificent precision in Guitar Pro.

A feature that is great for practicing any given part of a song is called Progressive speed. You can choose a part of a song, set it to start playing at 70% for example, and with each loop, Guitar Pro increases the playback speed until you reach 100%.

guitar-pro-7-08

 

Chord and scale tools

The chord and scale generation tools are important not only to beginners learning chords and scales, but also to artists composing songs.

The chord tool allows you to generate a seemingly unlimited number of voicings for any given chord.

guitar-pro-7-03

And the scale tool displays not only the notes of any scale, but also the scale's position on the fretboard at the click of a button.

guitar-pro-7-02

Export features

No software that before Guitar Pro 7 has had this many features that deal with exporting and sharing your musical work.

You can export your composition in a wide variety of file extensions. Naturally, this means you can export it as an MP3, or even as some of the other types of files that have been becoming more and more popular in the last few years (such as FLAC). The quality of your composition will not suffer while exporting it to this or that file extension.

And of course, you can export your composition into MIDI as well.

For those who are looking for input from another fellow guitarist or someone who reviews music, they are best suited to export their creations using the MusicXML files or Guitar Pro. This is the best way to keep your notes and tabs in order while you export your composition.

If you re looking to export your tabs only, you can do so using the most used extension for documents, PDF. Or you can also use the PNG file format that is most commonly used to share high-quality images.

Advanced Guitar Pro features

While most users will stick with the general features of Guitar Pro from above, the software has many very advanced features that advanced musicians and composers can use to speed up their work.

These include:

  • Composition help through the bar checker and arranger
  • Alternate tunings
  • Support for 3-10 stringed instruments

Who is Guitar Pro 7 for?

Thanks to the large array of functions built into Guitar Pro, the software can be used by guitar players of all levels.

Beginner guitarists will get a lot out of the program, I even met a person who learned to play guitar exclusively through Guitar Pro. I think the most useful features of Guitar Pro for beginners are:

  • The musical playback of their favorite songs.
  • The ability to slow down playback, which makes learning songs much easier.
  • The looper feature, to learn a part of a song via repetition.
  • The chord and scale library is also very useful for beginners who are just diving into learning guitar theory.

Advanced musicians who compose can also make good use of Guitar Pro's advanced composing features:

  • Composing of not just guitar tracks, but also drums, piano, wind instruments, etc. The playback quality may be a little lower than the sound generated by Audition, but hey. Guitar Pro costs 1/10th of the price.
  • The program helps create compositions with the chord and scale generator.
  • It also checks to make sure each bar is of correct duration and lets you know if there are any mistakes.

Music teachers can also make use of Guitar Pro's features:

  • Sharing and exporting of tabs to printable PDF
  • Simultaneously teach tablature and standard notation
  • Chord diagrams right above the tablature

In truth, the vast number of features included in Guitar Pro makes it useful to pretty much anybody involved with music.

Where can you download Guitar Pro tablature files?

Thanks to the enormous community of Guitar Pro users, you can find the Guitar Pro tablature file to basically any song ever written.

Guitar Pro 7 uses the .gp file extension. It can import Guitar Pro files of previous versions as well, which had the following extensions: .gtp, .gp3, .gp4, .gp5, .gpx.

If you are looking for a specific song, it's easiest to head to Google and type in the title of the song you are looking for + guitar pro tabs. Here is an example:

"Sweet Child of Mine guitar pro tabs"

You can also browse enormous tablature databases on several sites for free:

The world is your oyster when it comes to GP tabs.

Free Guitar Pro trial version

You can download Guitar Pro and use it for free for 30 days.

https://www.guitar-pro.com/en/index.php?pg=download

After the 30 days are up, the program will disable itself if you don't buy a license key.

How much does Guitar Pro cost?

A new license to Guitar Pro 7.5 costs EUR 69.95 in Europe, and $69.95 in the USA. If you are updating from a previous version, you will buy a discounted upgrade license for EUR 34.95.

Are there any discounts to Guitar Pro 7?

Yes, students at TheGuitarLesson.com receive a 10% discount to Guitar Pro 7.

Guitar Pro alternatives

Guitar Pro is really in a league of its own when you look at what you can accomplish with it, and how much it costs. All competitors are either low quality, or very expensive.

PowerTab

It is quite cruel to compare one to the other, but here we go. Powertab only runs on Windows and hasn't been updated since the year 2006...

Compared to Guitar Pro, everything looks amateurish and outdated, especially the offered features.

TuxGuitar

This software is closer to the abilities of Guitar Pro than the aforementioned PowerTab. It has been updated once in the last three years and it works on Windows and Mac.

But, on the other hand, Tuxguitar has much poorer interface, with many features, that are standard for Guitar Pro missing.

And finally, it does not bode well if you are looking to export your music. You can fiddle around with it, but it is not suited for serious composition.

Finale

This is one of the best software to compose music with. Finale is one of the rare programs that offer more features and instruments than Guitar Pro. Many professionals use it.

But if you are a struggling musician or someone who has just started working on their music you might get scared away by the huge price tag of over $600.

Also, like the other alternatives to GP, Finale is not updated very often either.

My opinion about GP7.5

If you've read the above paragraphs, I think you already know what I think about Guitar Pro. Others think highly of it as well.

Before this program, it was far more difficult to learn to play guitar. The traditional way meant you would have to listen, study and try to repeat the notes you heard in a song. Many students found this stale and boring. It also took so much time just to learn the most basic of chords.

With Guitar Pro, everything is much more simple. You open the software, download the song and examine it in GP's interface. You can listen to any part of the song, slow it down, repeat it, or even transpose it with the click of the mouse.

Thanks to Guitar Pro, you can learn any song you can think of, or write your own tracks in a simple manner. I really think Guitar Pro is a must-have for all guitar players.

Again, here is the link to the free trial download:

https://www.guitar-pro.com/en/index.php?pg=download

'Tis Christmas time again, stores start filling, people start shopping for gifts. Giving is a great joy, especially when you know that the gift will make the recipient happy, so Christmas shopping can get a bit difficult and stressful when you don't have any ideas. Luckily, guitarists will always be happy to receive guitar related stuff, no matter how small or large.

Here are a couple of guitar related Christmas gift ideas for you:

1. Personalized Picks Make a Great Christmas Present

personalized-picks-christmas-gift

Personalized picks

You can get totally personalized guitar picks, which make great Christmas presents for any guitarist. They are very very cool, your favorite guitarist will be showing it off to his/her friends, colleagues, people on the street for a long time 🙂

Make sure the pick really is personalized, meaning it has the recipients nick name, face, logo, or some other form of personal detail printed or engraved onto the pick.

If your favorite guitarist is into jewelry, you can also get silver guitar pick medals to put onto necklaces.

Read more