Archives For Guitar Music

Guitar Scales for Beginners

October 14, 2019

Learning to play guitar scales in first position. Image copyright 2019 by Rajesh Gandhi. All rights reserved.

Beginning guitarists should learn several guitar scales well. Learning the chromatic, natural, and major scales provides beginners with a solid foundation for playing their instrument proficiently.

Chromatic Scales

I teach all my students to play an E chromatic scale on the first string in their first lesson. To play the scale, play the string open, then play all the notes in order from the first fret to the twelfth fret.

The student does not learn the names of the notes at this time; he focuses on proper technique of fingering and sounding each note.

In one of their early lessons, I then teach them to play an E chromatic scale across the strings in first position. I encourage them to use this scale regularly as a warm-up exercise for their playing.

Learning the chromatic scales is a foundational skill that I stress with all my students. Playing these scales with good technique teaches the student many important skills and also helps train their ears.

Natural Scales

Having taught them to play the two E chromatic scales, I teach them to play an A natural scale. Learning a natural scale helps the student learn the names of the notes and which notes have sharps/flats between them and which ones do not.

My students also learn to play an E natural scale across the strings in first position. By learning this scale, the student learns to name all the natural notes in first position.

Learning to play natural scales in multiple positions and on all the strings helps in learning the guitar fretboard well. Knowing the fretboard well is vital for becoming a skilled guitarist who can play at advanced levels.

Major Scales

In addition to teaching them to play chromatic and natural scales, I teach them to play an E major scale on the first string.

I also teach them to play a movable major scale in 4th position. Learning this scales serves many important purposes in the training of skilled guitarists.

Learn These Guitar Scales Well!

Anyone who wants to be a skilled guitarist should learn these guitar scales well. Good teachers should stress the importance of doing so with all their students.

Guitar music for Jesus Loves MeJesus Loves Me is a favorite hymn of believers, especially of children. This PDF provides the guitar chords and lyrics to play the first stanza of the song.

In addition, you can practice playing the chords to this song to the melody by using the audio of the melody:


See the full lyrics here.

“Satisfied” by Clara T. Williams is a hymn that powerfully testifies to the satisfaction that knowing Jesus brings to the life of a believer. This PDF provides the first stanza, melody notes, and chord symbols for all the chords to play the song in the key of D.

If you are an advanced guitarist, play all the chords to this song. To make the song easier to play, play the chords as normal chords instead of playing them as slash chords (for example, play Em7 instead of Em7/D).

With this mp3 audio of the song, you can practice playing the chords while hearing the melody (there are 5 introductory beats before the song begins).

 

Long before there was any rock music, classical guitarists such as Fernando Sor and Andrés Segovia earned widespread acclaim for their fantastic musical abilities. These virtuosos played instrumental music that was recognized all over the world for its musical excellence.

When rock music became popular in the US, the electric guitar was at the forefront of the popularity of that style. The classical guitar, however, had already existed for more than a century and a half by that time, and it never was and never has been the symbol of rock music.

To reject the use of the classical guitar so as not to associate oneself with rock music is a seriously flawed perspective that has no historical or biblical basis (see this post for an explanation) to support it. Christian churches today should not reject the use of the classical guitar out of an erroneous notion that to use the classical guitar is inherently to play rock music, CCM, or any other music that they deem to be unacceptable music for corporate worship.

Adult Beginning Guitar Class!

December 16, 2017

Lord willing, I will be teaching an adult beginning guitar class for Majesty Music Academy in Spring 2018. If you know of anyone in the Greenville, SC area who might be interested in learning guitar by enrolling in a guitar class, please let them know about this opportunity.

“Always the Same” is a beautiful hymn by Ron Hamilton that extols how Jesus is unchanging. Recently, four of us from my church ministered this hymn as an oboe, cello, viola, and guitar quartet.

“Old MacDonald” is a favorite kids’ song that many children learn at an early age. “David Learned to Play the Harp” is sung to the same tune, but it teaches some biblical truth.

This PDF provides the melody notes, lyrics, and guitar chords to play this song in the key of C. You can practice playing and singing the song using the audio provided below.

David Learned to Play the Harp

David learned to play the harp;
Little did he know;
That one day God would use him to
Make a demon go.

With a note, note here,
And a chord, chord there,
Ev’rywhere, ev’ry day,
He would play a psalm, psalm.

David learned to play the harp,
pleasing his God so.

Copyright © 2017 by Rajesh Gandhi. All rights reserved.

“Feliz, feliz, cumpleaños” is a very popular Spanish hymn that is widely used to wish God’s blessings on people on their birthdays. The hymn is played using 9 fairly basic chords: C, CM7, D, D7, Dm, Em, F, G, and G7.

This PDF provides the first line of the song, the guitar chords, and chord diagrams for each chord the first time that chord is played in the song. You can practice playing these chords with the following audio of the song:

 

Blest Be the Tie That Binds“Blest Be the Tie That Binds” is a short song that has a very simple rhythm. This PDF provides the melody, guitar chords, and first stanza for playing the song in the key of F.

Practice playing the melody and the chords along with the melody (2 introductory measures):

Below is an easy-to-play PDF that makes playing the chords for the hymn “Grace Greater than Our Sins” pretty simple. The diagrams show how to strum the first four measures of the song. The rest of the song has the same duration notes.

Measure 1

GGTOSins Measure 1 Rhythm

 

Strum the G chord in this measure 3 times, counting the rhythm as shown above the three slash marks.

Measure 2

GGTOSins Measure 2 Rhythm

 

Change to a D chord in time to strum it on beat 1 of this measure and strum it again on beats 2 and 3.

Measure 3

GGTOSins Measure 3 Rhythm

 

Change back to a G chord in time to strum it on beat 1 of measure 3 and hold it for two beats. Strum the G again on beat 3.

Measure 4

GGTOSins Measure 4 Rhythm

 

Strum a G chord on beat 1 of measure 4 and hold it for 3 beats.

Now you should know how to play the chords for the whole song, as shown by the chord diagrams and slashes in this PDF!

Practice playing the chords to the melody: