Basic Song Structure (Guitar Lesson)

What are you waiting for? Get your membership now!

Basic Song Structure

Freebo talks about basic song structure in this lesson, covering the verse, chorus and bridge. He uses his original song, "If Not Now When" as an example.

Taught by Freebo in Freebo Artist Series seriesLength: 24:45Difficulty: 2.5 of 5

Video Subtitles / Captions

Member Comments about this Lesson

Discussions with our instructors are just one of the many benefits of becoming a member of JamPlay.

sharonathomesharonathome replied on February 7th, 2015

Really excellent straightforward lesson. Thanks for sharing!

theblackstrattheblackstrat replied on May 28th, 2013

I am a guitar player, but also checked out the Bass lessons on JamPlay. Freebo has got some nice Bass lessons too. Check them out. I am so excited to find this great site.

theblackstrattheblackstrat replied on May 28th, 2013

Hey Freebo. Thanks for this great lesson and sharing your own songs. I recommend to everyone else to go to and check out the entire albums. It puts all these lessons as well as his bass playing into context and perspective.

rychekrychek replied on March 4th, 2013

Really enjoyed this lesson. Great song, and your an excellant teacher. Very encouraging to those of us getting a late start in our guitar journey! Appreciate all your teachings.

jpbluestringjpbluestring replied on January 7th, 2013

Hey Freebo, I really liked this lesson. Not only is it original material showing your true talent but your explanation opened up new horizons for me. Thanks for being true.

dougromanodougromano replied on December 25th, 2012

Freebo -- This lesson came at the right time for me. Sometimes the most obvious things can be easily overlooked. Your perspective is even more valuable than the musical content you provide. I have listened to this lesson 3 times now. Please continue.... I will be listening to the next lessons very closely.

3deeder3deeder replied on November 30th, 2012

well spoken...

UnclePecosUnclePecos replied on November 30th, 2012

Very inspirational lesson! Thanks Freebo

jesperlindejesperlinde replied on November 30th, 2012

superb lesson.

Freebo Artist Series

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

Freebo, acclaimed bassist, guitar player and songwriter walks you through the craft of writing and playing songs.

Lesson 1

Introducing Freebo

In the first lesson of his artist series, Freebo introduces himself as both a person and musician. He moves on to talk about his guitar, choice of strings and even throws in a bit of philosophy.

Length: 31:15 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 2

Tuning Your Guitar

Freebo jumps into his first official lesson on the basics of the guitar. Before anything else, you must learn how to tune your guitar. Walk through the process with Freebo in this lesson.

Length: 15:53 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 3

Basic Theory

Freebo touches on some basic theory in this lesson, including the very helpful I-IV-V progression. He uses a keyboard for visual reference.

Length: 33:51 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 4

Introduction to Songwriting

Freebo starts talking about basic songwriting in this lesson. He uses an original song, "She's My D.O.G." as an example, which is a simple I-IV-V progression in the key of E.

Length: 18:30 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 5

Basic Song Structure

Freebo talks about basic song structure in this lesson, covering the verse, chorus and bridge. He uses his original song, "If Not Now When" as an example.

Length: 24:45 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 6

Relative Minors

Freebo continues his discussion on songwriting with a lesson on relative minor chords.

Length: 17:00 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 7

Chord Inversions

In his newest lesson, Freebo talks about chord inversions.

Length: 28:38 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 8

Seventh Chords

Freebo talks all about seventh chords in this lesson.

Length: 22:17 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 9

The Pentatonic Scale

In this lesson, Freebo gets bluesy and takes a close look at the pentatonic scale.

Length: 24:32 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 10

Circle of Fifths

Freebo takes some time to talk about the circle of fifths.

Length: 13:18 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 11

Alternative Chord Progressions

Freebo uses his original song, "My Personal GPS," to demonstrate concepts such as blues riffs, slash chords, and secondary dominant chords.

Length: 24:55 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 12

The Songwriting Process

To help explain his songwriting process, Freebo talks about his thoughts and choices behind one of his original songs - "When There's No Place Like Home".

Length: 32:46 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 13

Picking Techniques

Freebo talks about some picking techniques using an original song called "To The Light" as an example.

Length: 30:35 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 14


In lesson 14, Freebo uses an original song, "How Do I Say Goodbye," to talk about pedaling.

Length: 26:00 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 15


In this lesson, Freebo teaches an original song called "Trouble." This catchy tune provides a great opportunity to practice more right hand technique.

Length: 30:02 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 16

Time Signatures

Freebo takes some time to talk about time signatures in this lesson. He uses two songs as examples and also touches a little more on groove.

Length: 39:16 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 17

Right Hand Groove

Freebo talks about right hand rhythm and groove using two original songs as examples: "The Beauty Of Life" and "Sometimes It's For Nothin'."

Length: 37:43 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 18

The Rule of Two

Freebo takes some time to talk about the "rule of two" and how it can be useful in songwriting. He uses a couple song examples to show how it works, including one of his originals, "We Are All One People."

Length: 32:36 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 19

Alternate Tunings: Drop D

In this lesson, Freebo talks about drop D tuning using his original song, "A Soldier At War" as an example.

Length: 16:42 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 20

Alternate Tunings: Double Drop D

Freebo continues his discussion on alternate tunings with a lesson on double drop D tuning. He uses an original song called "More Like You" as an example.

Length: 18:04 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 21

Partial Capo

Freebo talks about partial capos and shares some cool ideas for using them. He uses his original song, "She Loves My Dog More Than Me" as an example.

Length: 32:08 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 22

It Goes By Fast

Freebo talks about his original song "It Goes By Fast". He uses this song to talk about his songwriting process.

Length: 25:56 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 23

Before the Separation

Freebo continues his partial capo and songwriting discussion using one of his original tunes, "Before the Separation," as an example.

Length: 23:08 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 24

Something to Believe

Freebo continues the topic of the partial capo and songwriting by using his tune "Something to Believe" from the album of the same name.

Length: 16:17 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 25

On The Parallel Together

Freebo continues his discussion on partial capos in relation to songwriting using two of his original songs - "On the Parallel Together" and " That's What Love Is."

Length: 22:24 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 26

Standing Ovation

Freebo leaves us with one last lesson in this series; he performs a beautiful song called "Standing Ovation". He also concludes his discussion on songwriting and partial capos, and gives his final thoughts...

Length: 26:26 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only

About Freebo View Full Biography

Freebo is an award-winning singer/songwriter and blues folk icon. For 30 years, Freebo played bass on recordings and toured with some of the great artists of our time; people like Bonnie Raitt (10 years), John Mayall & The Bluesbreakers, CSN, Maria Muldaur, Ringo Starr, Michelle Shocked, Neil Young, Loudon Wainwright III, Dr. John, and many others. He has alsoappeared on Saturday Night Live, Midnight Special, Muppets Tonight, and in concert with the legendary Spinal Tap.

Acoustic Guitar Lessons

Our acoustic guitar lessons are taught by qualified instructors with various backgrounds with the instrument.

Hawkeye Herman Hawkeye Herman

Hawkeye teaches several Robert Johnson licks in this lesson. These licks are played with a slide in open G tuning.

Free LessonSeries Details
Danny Voris Danny Voris

Lesson 7 is all about arpeggios. Danny provides discussion and exercises designed to build your right hand skills.

Free LessonSeries Details
Steve Eulberg Steve Eulberg

Steve Eulberg does a quick review of this lesson series and talks about moving on.

Free LessonSeries Details
Alan Skowron Alan Skowron

Alan shares his background in teaching and sets the direction for his beginning bass series with simple ideas and musical...

Free LessonSeries Details
Nick Amodeo Nick Amodeo

Nick explains how to play some of the most commonly used chords in the bluegrass genre.

Free LessonSeries Details
Jessica Baron Jessica Baron

Jessica kindly introduces herself, her background, and her approach to this series.

Free LessonSeries Details
Jim Deeming Jim Deeming

Jim discusses the importance of setting goals. He provides some tips that will help steer your practicing in the right direction.

Free LessonSeries Details
Randall Williams Randall Williams

In this lesson Randall introduces the partial capo (using a short-cut capo by Kyser) and talks about how it can make the...

Free LessonSeries Details
Rich Nibbe Rich Nibbe

Rich Nibbe takes a look at how you can apply the pentatonic scale in the style of John Mayer into your playing.

Free LessonSeries Details

Electric Guitar Lesson Samples

Our electric guitar lessons are taught by instructors with an incredible amount of teaching experience.

Nick Greathouse Nick Greathouse

Nick starts his series with Alternate Picking part 1. Improve your timing, speed, and execution with this important lesson.

Free LessonSeries Details
Lisa Pursell Lisa Pursell

Lisa breaks into the very basics of the electric guitar. She starts by explaining the parts of the guitar. Then, she dives...

Free LessonSeries Details
Andy James Andy James

Get an in-depth look into the mind of virtuoso guitarist Andy James. Learn about Andy's early beginnings all the way up to...

Free LessonSeries Details
Nick Kellie Nick Kellie

Nick explains how to use scales and modes effectively when soloing over a chord progression.

Free LessonSeries Details
Guthrie Trapp Guthrie Trapp

JamPlay introduces Nashville session player Guthrie Trapp! In this first segment, Guthrie talks a little about his influences,...

Free LessonSeries Details
Kenny Ray Kenny Ray

Albert Collins brought a lot of style to the blues scene. In this lesson, Kenny breaks down Albert's style for you to learn.

Free LessonSeries Details
Dave Weiner Dave Weiner

Dave "David J" Weiner returns with a lesson on how to play with style and attitude. He covers all the basic techniques you'll...

Free LessonSeries Details
Braun Khan Braun Khan

In this lesson, Braun teaches the chord types that are commonly used in jazz harmony. Learn how to build the chords and their...

Free LessonSeries Details
Billy Sheehan Billy Sheehan

Billy starts his artist series off with a lesson on something he gets asked the most to explain: right hand 3 finger technique.

Free LessonSeries Details
Rex Brown Rex Brown

Dive into the playing of Rex Brown. As the bass player for Pantera, Down, and Kill Devil Hill, Brown's real world experience...

Free LessonSeries Details

Join over 451916 guitarists who have learned how to play in weeks... not years!

Signup today to enjoy access to our entire database of video lessons, along with our exclusive set of learning tools and features.

Unlimited Lesson Viewing

A JamPlay membership gives you access to every lesson, from every teacher on our staff. Additionally, there is no restriction on how many times you watch a lesson. Watch as many times as you need.

Live Lessons

Exclusive only to JamPlay, we currently broadcast 8-10 hours of steaming lesson services directly to you! Enjoy the benefits of in-person instructors and the conveniences of our community.

Interactive Community

Create your own profile, manage your friends list, and contact users with your own JamPlay Mailbox. JamPlay also features live chat with teachers and members, and an active Forum.

Chord Library

Each chord in our library contains a full chart, related tablature, and a photograph of how the chord is played. A comprehensive learning resource for any guitarist.

Scale Library

Our software allows you to document your progress for any lesson, including notes and percent of the lesson completed. This gives you the ability to document what you need to work on, and where you left off.

Custom Chord Sheets

At JamPlay, not only can you reference our Chord Library, but you can also select any variety of chords you need to work on, and generate your own printable chord sheet.

Backing Tracks

Jam-along backing tracks give the guitarist a platform for improvising and soloing. Our backing tracks provide a wide variety of tracks from different genres of music, and serves as a great learning tool.

Interactive Games

We have teachers covering beginner lessons, rock, classic rock, jazz, bluegrass, fingerstyle, slack key and more. Learn how to play the guitar from experienced players, in a casual environment.

Beginners Welcome.. and Up

Unlike a lot of guitar websites and DVDs, we start our Beginner Lessons at the VERY start of the learning process, as if you just picked up a guitar for the first time.Our teaching is structured for all players.

Take a minute to compare JamPlay to other traditional and new methods of learning guitar. Our estimates for "In-Person" lessons below are based on a weekly face-to-face lesson for $40 per hour.

Price Per Lesson < $0.01 $4 - $5 $30 - $50 Free
Money Back Guarantee Sometimes n/a
Number of Instructors 82 1 – 3 1 Zillions
Interaction with Instructors Daily Webcam Sessions Weekly
Professional Instructors Luck of the Draw Luck of the Draw
New Lessons Daily Weekly Minutely
Structured Lessons
Learn Any Style Sorta
Track Progress
HD Video - Sometimes
Multiple Camera Angles Sometimes - Sometimes
Accurate Tabs Maybe Maybe
Scale/Chord Libraries
Custom JamTracks
Interactive Games
Learn in Sweatpants Socially Unacceptable
Gasoline Needed $0.00 $0.00 ~$4 / gallon! $0.00

Mike H.

"I feel like a 12 year old kid with a new guitar!"

I am 66 years young and I still got it! I would have never known this if it had not been for Jamplay! I feel like a 12 year old kid with a new guitar! Ha! I cannot express enough how great you're website is! It is for beginners and advanced pickers! I am an advanced picker and thought I had lost it but thanks to you all, I found it again! Even though I only play by ear, I have been a member a whopping whole two weeks now and have already got Brent's country shuffle and country blues down and of course with embellishments. Thank you all for your wonderful program!

Greg J.

"With Jamplay I can fit in a random session when I have time and I can go at my own pace"

I'm a fifty eight year old newbie who owns a guitar which has been sitting untouched in a corner for about seven years now. Last weekend I got inspired to pick it up and finally learn how to play after watching an amazing Spanish guitarist on TV. So, here I am. I'm starting at the beginning with Steve Eulberg and I couldn't be happier (except for the sore fingers :) Some day I'm going to play like Steve! I'm self employed with a hectic schedule. With Jamplay I can fit in a random session when I have time and I can go at my own pace, rewinding and replaying the videos until I get it. This is a very enjoyable diversion from my work yet I still feel like I'm accomplishing something worthwhile. Thanks a lot, Greg


"I believe this is the absolute best site for guitar students."

I am commenting here to tell you and everyone at JamPlay that I believe this is the absolute best site for guitar students. I truly enjoy learning to play the guitar on Yes, I said the words, ""enjoy learning."" It is by far the best deal for the money.

Join thousands of others that LIKE JamPlay!