3 – Basic folk

Subjects Covered

  • Chords
    • A folksy rock song
  • Scales
    • Pentatonic scale on 5th
  • Musicality
    • Keeping the beat
  • Exercises
    • Practicing the song and the scales

Seven rules of Guitar Kitchen

  • Keep your hands relaxed
  • Keep your guitar in tune
  • Play in time, with the rhythm
  • Musicality always beats technicality
  • Practice too slow instead of too fast
  • Play along to records whenever you can
  • Play with other people whenever you can

A folksy rock song

Points to remember:

  • your left hand pinky and ring finger stay anchored
  • think of the bass as a descending melodic line
  • play in time
  • play each chord for 4 beats (four beats = a measure)

Video for Lesson, Part One

The pentatonic major scale on the 5th fret (a C major pentatonic scale)

Get the Song

So you can practice playing the chords and making melodies:

Practice song

Creating a simple groove

groove (gruv) n. Music that has a good feel. See in the ‘In the pocket.’

For any musician and especially for a beginning guitarist here are some simple steps to ‘get into a groove’.

  1. Feel the beat. Try thinking of the beat as a heartbeat or the swelling of gentle waves
  2. Do not worry about the chords. Muffle the strings with your left hand and ‘lock intothe beat’, ‘get into the pocket’, and ‘play it tight’.
  3. Strum something simple and keep on doing it over and over again.
  4. Relax while you are playing.
  5. Pretend you are the backup-backup guitar playerand just add depth to the music
  6. Now repeat with the chords

Exercises

Learning the chords

Play the chords along to the mp3. Just strum each chord on the first beat of each measure. Remember, it is the rhythm that counts, not if you get the chord to sound right! Once you have the basic feel, add a little bit more. Strum on the 1st and 3rd beats of every measure. Try the steps suggested in ‘Creating a simple groove’.

Learning the newest pentatonic scale

Set your metronome on 60 clicks per minute (or even slower).

Make up a simple solo

Pick three or four notes from the pentatonic scale. Use these notes to come up with a simple solo to play over the recorded song. These exercises are similar to the exercises in lesson 2, but you are learning a new song.

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