When honing your guitar skills, it’s beneficial to work toward certain objectives. There are some benchmarks you need to hit as a beginner guitarist before you can claim to have made any significant progress. When learning guitar on your own, whether from blog postings or an app with online guitar lessons, it is always possible to develop technique and skill through focused practice.
Capable of Reading Chord Changes and Scales
In order to get started on the guitar, it’s common to master some basic scales and chord progressions. It’s the most efficient approach to learning the guitar’s structure. Learning to navigate the guitar’s fretboard will be a byproduct of your work with scales and chord progressions.
There will be a period of time where practicing scales and chord progressions can feel like a chore. Simple scales might be a pain to learn. Thankfully, following consistent practice, you’ll quickly be able to play the basic major and minor scales by ear.
Recognize and Master Guitar Scales and Chord Progression
The first meaningful step forward for a novice guitarist is to learn some basic techniques, such as scales and chord progressions. Some of the simplest jazz standards can be broken down into their component chord progressions, such as 2-5-1, which can then lead to a treasure trove of new music. The more practice you put in, the sooner you’ll be able to play complex scales and chord progressions with ease.
Check out this helpful guide by the Guitar Tricks if you’re interested in learning guitar chords. Key chord progressions for beginners can be learned at your own leisure here.
Studying Your Favorite Tunes
One of the next major goals should be mastering a few of your favorite songs on the instrument. Anything from simple four-chord Beatles and Bob Marley tunes to intricate riff-driven rock anthems fits this category. In either case, it’s a huge win to finally be able to play your favorite tunes.
The ability to play a few bars of a song you love is often a prerequisite to learning scales and arpeggios. Listening to music that you appreciate is a terrific approach to keep up your practicing routine. If you’re really into learning guitar, it won’t be long until you take it up and start jamming.
The fact that they are beginner guitar tunes or easy guitar music is irrelevant. If you already know how to play a few songs on the guitar, you’ll be able to show off your progress to others and get more feedback on your playing, both of which will help you improve faster. It serves as a visible sign of the progress you’ve made in your training.
Guitar Strum Patterns, Riffs, and Licks
Once you’ve mastered the basics, like a few chords and maybe a couple of tunes, you can go on to the more exciting stuff. Learning the riffs, licks, and strumming patterns of your favorite guitarists might be the most enjoyable part of picking up the guitar. If you want your guitar playing to sound like your hero’s, you’ll have to add some more complicated aspects.
How to Play the Guitar
All of these things are great for a guitarist since they expand his or her musical tastes and options. The ability to play licks is one of the most fun things to master on the guitar. You’ll also know you’ve come far as a guitarist when you’re able to try out new strumming patterns and master some timeless melodies.
Mastering these advanced strumming patterns will propel your guitar-playing career forward by strengthening your sense of rhythm. If you want to develop better harmonic senses as a guitarist, spend some of your practice time working on licks.
Learning to Listen
Training your ears is one of the more nebulous guitar abilities to learn, yet being a vital first step in getting started. However, if you want to improve your guitar playing and train your hearing in the process, here are some simple measures to take.
Study the philosophy of learning. You may or may not have a predisposition toward having an innate ability to understand music through sound alone. Developing an ear for music is a challenging endeavor. It’s important to do scale exercises on a regular basis. Challenge yourself by mastering as many different scales as you can. Over time, you’ll be able to hear a note without having to train your brain to identify it.
Intense interval training that is complete. Introductory and intermediate guitarists may not be familiar with the concept of interval training. Training in intervals involves practicing pitch discrimination between successive pairs of notes in a scale. Learning to hear intervals in music is essential for deciphering the note progressions that make up melodies.
Recognizing the fundamental pitch is a skill you should hone. Playing the guitar or even just listening to music is a great way to hone your ability to recognize a root note. The goal is to listen to a song and identify the lowest note in the given chord. Now that you know what note it is, you may start humming along with it. You probably won’t be great at it at first, but with practice, you can get better and better.
Participate in musical performances by joining in the singing. To improve your aural guitar playing, this is a must whether or not you have a natural singing voice. While singing along, your brain works harder to determine the exact pitch of each note. You can improve your guitar playing skills by singing along with the music and mentally reviewing the notes you’re singing.
One of the greatest satisfactions of learning guitar is mastering a killer solo. When a guitarist is able to solo, it is a huge step forward since it shows that they have mastered key signatures, chords, melody, and the interplay between the notes on the guitar. More significantly, there’s no denying the cool factor of going it alone. Like being at a John Mayer performance in person. Rather than John Mayer, you are the one on stage, singing the incredible song you’ve been itching to learn.
Listening to a mind-blowing Jimi Hendrix solo has motivated many of us to pick up the guitar. As musicians, we have a natural inclination to try to channel our heroes by playing solos that sound like theirs.
Improving your guitar talents is also reflected in your ability to play your first guitar solo. Not everyone can play a solo, but there are plenty of people who can strum chords till their fingers bleed. Mastering all of the aforementioned techniques, such as scales, chord progressions, riffs, licks, and ear training, is necessary for playing guitar solos. You should also learn how to solo competently over guitar chord progressions as you learn them. Your enjoyment of playing the guitar will increase as you acquire and hone such talents.
This is an excellent goal to strive towards on your guitar learning journey, since it shows that your skills and knowledge have progressed to the next level.
Sixth, Participating in Ensembles
Maybe it’s time to start jamming with other musicians when you’ve gotten comfortable playing solos over your favorite songs while practicing major and minor scales, learning chord progressions in different keys, and so on.
Sharing a song with a friend is one of music’s greatest rewards. The best method to revitalize your creative spirit and gain new ideas is to jam with other artists. Playing with others will facilitate and enrich your comprehension of harmony, timing, and dynamics.
Not just guitarists, but musicians in general can teach you a lot. Playing guitar in a band requires you to be in tune with the other musicians and in time with the drummer. Additionally, your ear can be trained through playing with others. It’ll simplify self-study and help you get ahead.
The ability to perform music with other musicians is a worthy goal in itself, as solo practice is really just a warm-up for the real thing. Since you likely wouldn’t want to embarrass yourself, this should keep you motivated to keep your guitar skills at a high level.
Create Original Music by Composing Your Own Songs
Composing your own music is a terrific goal to strive for when learning guitar. You probably made up a song and composed the lyrics when you were a kid. You’ve finally accomplished your heart’s desire from childhood.
A guitarist that puts in the effort to compose his or her own songs is clearly dedicated to their trade. It takes imagination and self-control to compose your own music. Through the years, many amazing songs have been composed with the guitar, and yours could be the next one.
The ability to compose original music for the guitar is further evidence of one’s mastery of the instrument. After a few lessons, just about anyone can learn to play a simple progression of three chords. The ability to compose original music is a must if you want to improve your playing skills. Chord progressions, melodies, intervals, finger and strumming methods, and more will all be necessary.
You’ll have to struggle to find your own voice as a guitarist and improve the parts of your tunes that sound like they were copied from someone else. The process of writing your own music is exciting and fulfilling, and reaching that point is something you should aim for.
To Perform a Concert
Learning to perform in front of an audience is a major step for guitarists in their development. It doesn’t matter if you’re playing a five-minute set at a bar or a guitar recital. Hearing music performed live will heighten your senses and highlight any gaps in your guitar playing. Playing in front of an appreciative audience can also boost your self-esteem and motivate you to keep at it as a guitar student.
When you get your first gig, it’s a significant deal since it’s the first time you get to show off your guitar skills to an audience. You’ll be put under intense scrutiny and expected to deliver. In many cases, it’s a scary but ultimately worthwhile adventure. You could be hanging out with your guitar instructor or other musicians, or you could be by yourself.
A guitarist’s true mettle is revealed when they take the stage. If stage fright is likely, it could help to warm up in front of a small audience of loved ones. One possible benefit is that it simplifies things for certain individuals. However, there are many who would rather perform for an unfamiliar audience during their first gig.
No matter what, though, remembering that everybody has a poor gig is absolutely crucial. If your first gig doesn’t go as planned, try not to let it get you down. Having a gig where you feel uncomfortable performing is just as valuable as having a positive one. You will learn from these situations and gain insight on how to improve as a performer. Learning is the ultimate goal.
Join Voices in Song and Play
The ability to juggle multiple tasks at once is a rare one. If you’re just starting out, it might be extremely challenging to pick up singing while playing the guitar at the same time. Nonetheless, this is a goal that many guitar players aspire to achieve.
Getting there is a worthy objective. After all, a good chunk of the music you’ll be studying has words, and it will be great pleasure to sing along as you go.
Your guitar practice schedule will evolve over time to reflect your changing interests as a musician. Your desire to sing will likely influence your choice of guitar music, leading you to focus on tunes that you feel comfortable singing.
You should get in the habit of practicing your guitar rhythms as soon as possible if you want to be able to do so while singing. It’s a challenging technique to perfect, but it’s well worth the effort.
Being a musician begins when you start creating your own music and performing it publicly with your pals. Meanwhile, it’s crucial to devote your time and energy to mastering the basics in order to progress rapidly and attain your goals ahead of schedule. Without a firm grasp of guitar theory, including chord progressions, scales, and arpeggios, it will be impossible for you to write original music. You won’t be able to perform well in front of an audience unless you can confidently perform a solo.
Setting new objectives can be helpful once you’ve crossed off several of the basic ones. In order to keep yourself motivated, you need set goals no matter how experienced you are. All the best to you on your quest to master the guitar, and we hope you’ll keep on practicing!