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Strumming Technique (Guitar Lesson)

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Steve Eulberg

Strumming Technique

Now that Steve has taught some chords, he will go over the proper methods of strumming and right hand technique.

Taught by Steve Eulberg in Basic Guitar with Steve Eulberg seriesLength: 42:00Difficulty: 2.0 of 5
Chapter 1: (02:22) Introduction Steve introduces this lesson by playing a beautiful piece of music that he wrote himself.
Chapter 2: (18:59) Lesson Review and Strumming
  • Previous Lesson Review
    • The beginning of this chapter is dedicated to a brief review of the previous lessons.
      • Things to Review
        • Tune Your Guitar - Get in the habit of tuning your guitar everytime you play.
        • Finger Exercise - Do one or more of finger exercises to get yourself warmed up and ready to go. Steve will review the last finger exercise briefly.
        • Practice - Practice things you learned in your last lesson. Try and play the easy c, easy g and d7 chords. Then move on to playing the G Major, C Major and D Major.
  • The Right Hand
    • This lesson focuses quite a bit on using your right hand. The right hand is the picking or strumming hand, depending on what type of music you play. Try to think of the right hand as the clock that plays steady and keeps going regardless of what the left hand is doing. During this lesson, even if you are not getting clear tone from your left hand, if you miss a finger or make any other sort of mistake, ignore it and keep going so you can get in the habit of keeping the right hand steady.
  • Basic Strumming
    • Strumming, at it's most basic, is playing a chord or chord progression rhythmically. Finger the G Chord (check the supplemental content if you forgot how) and take your pick (or alternatively thumb) in your hand and strum down all of the 6 strings. You should get a full, rich sound. If you hear any muffled strings, buzz or anything of that nature play each string individually until you find out what the problem is. Practice strumming very slowly for a bit.
  • Down Up Strum
    • The down-up strum is one of the most basic forums of strumming. You simply strum down the guitar as you regularly would, then instead of strumming downwards again you strum up. The down up strum is very good for keeping time, and a great strumming pattern to practice while changing chords. While you are playing this lesson, don't forget, even if you mess up a chord change keep your right hand doing the down-up strum pattern. If you are having trouble fingering the chords and doing the down up strum at the same time, feel free to practice without fingering a chord and strike the open strings. The sound will not be as good, but it will help your right hand get used to the motions.
  • Using Your Thumb
    • The down-up strum is a bit different if you are not using your thumb. If you are playing your thumb, you can strum downwards with the pad of your thumb and back with your fingernail. This may not create the best sound, as the pad and fingernail create different sounds so this method is not recommended unless that is the type of sound you are looking for. An alternate method is strumming downward with your thumb and back up with your first/pointer finger.
  • Correct Strings
    • Remember to only strum the strings the chord you are playing calls for. For instance, with the G chord you can strum all 6 strings, but with the C chord you can only strum from the 5th (a string) down.
  • Where to Strum
    • While strumming you may find yourself wondering where the proper place to strum is. Directly over the sound hole is the most common place to strum, as it gives the richest sound, but there are situations where you may want to play farther up the neck or towards the bridge as it gives a different, but still nice sound.
  • Practice Makes Perfect
    • The best way to get good at strumming is simply to practice. Strum the G chord 50 times, the C chord 50 times, the G chord 50 times, the C chord 50 times, the D7th chord 50 times, the C chord 50 times, the D7th chord 50 times, the C chord 50 times and the G chord 50 times. If you need a reminder on how to finger any of these chords please check the supplimental content.
Chapter 3: (10:52) New Strumming Patterns This chapter is all about strumming patterns. Learn more about them and receive some great tips and tricks.

Why Repetition?
    You might be asking yourself why Steve insists on repeating the same exercise so many times. The answer is quite simple, when you repeat something often enough you are literally rewiring your brain and creating what is called 'muscle memory'. This will allow you to play whatever you are working on without any though required.
Strumming Pattern B
    This strumming pattern is similar to the down up strum (or strumming pattern A), the change is that you are leaving out one half beat (1/8th note). Think of this strumming pattern as a "down down up down up down up" pattern, identical to the plain down up strum however skip the first up strum.

    You might be asking yourself what the point of dropping this half beat is. It simply adds more texture to the strumming pattern making it more interesting to the ear.

    While you are playing this strumming pattern, do not forget to keep your hand going as if the missing note were still there. So even though you are not doing the up strum, move your hand up as if you were, or else the next down strum will feel awkward.

    Be sure to look in the supplemental content section at Strumming Pattern #2/B for a visual representation of this exercise.
Practicing the B Rhythm
    Practice strumming pattern B using all of the chords you know. The G Major, C Major and D7th.

    Start out by playing four measures of G (each measure consists of down down up down up down up). Follow that with four measures of C, four measures of D 7th and four measures of G.

    There are many songs that use these same chords in the exact same order, so as you are playing this exercise you may realize one of your favorite songs sounds exactly like what you are playing.
Strumming Pattern C
    Strumming Pattern C is similar to B, but instead of leaving out one half beat on only the first measure you will do it on the first and second measure, creating a "down down down up down up" strumming pattern. Begin by practicing this strumming pattern 50 times using the G chord.
Sounding Different
    These strumming patterns are great fun to learn, as not only do they help you gain skill and dexterity, but they also let you add different flavors of sound to your guitar playing. Often players associate different sounds on the guitar only with the left hand, but in the case of these strumming patterns you play the exact same thing with your left hand and the sound still changes because of what is going on with the right hand.
Chapter 4: (7:21) More on Strumming Now that you have practiced strumming pattern C we are ready to move on to bigger and better things. Remember, if you need a visual representation of the strumming patterns be sure to look in the supplemental content section.

Pattern C with More Chords
    Now move on and practice strumming pattern C with not only the G chord, but the C and D7 as well.
Strumming Pattern D
    Strumming pattern D is called the 'traditional folk rhythm' by some people. Please bring up strumming pattern D in the supplemental content section for a visual representation if necessary.

    This rhythm is more difficult to explain in text, but basically goes down up down up rest up down up. This pattern drops a down strum. For greater variety and flavor to this strumming pattern you can drop the first two up strums, making it down down skip beat up down up.
Practice Makes Perfect
    Before you move on to the next lesson, be sure to practice all four of these strumming patterns with the three chords you currently know. Remember, if you need help refreshing your memory the chords and patterns are available in the supplemental content section.
Chapter 5: (02:15) Chord Changing Tips Which Fingers First?
    When you are trying to change chords there are many fingers to put down on different places, and the question can be which finger to put down first.

    When you are strumming, typically your bottom strings (Low E, A, etc) come first, so if you have trouble getting all of the fingers down at precisely the same time you are more then welcome to lay down the low strings first and the rest of the fingers just in time to be played. It will sound no different, but can be easier.
Sound of High and Low Strings
    When you strum downwards, from the low strings upwards the sound is different then if you strum from the high strings down. Keep this in mind and play with it as you practice, because this can be another simple method to add flavor and spice to songs.
Chapter 6: (1:01) Ending Credits Thank you for watching Basic Guitar with Steve Eulberg Lesson 3! This scene contains another sample of Steve playing, as well as the ending credits.

Do not forget to practice this lesson thoroughly before moving on to the next.

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.

GordoGrantGordoGrant replied

Well, once I got enrolled, I've spent 45 minutes each evening with Sensei Steve Eulberg, a Renaissance Bear of a man and great teacher

Lindsay1jockoLindsay1jocko replied

I can’t see where his fingers are being placed in relation to the chords

Bradley.ConwayBradley.Conway replied

Hi Lindsay1jocko! You can click the red "Supplemental" button directly below the video player to find the full list of chords with diagrams and tabs. It's a pretty handy tool and you can even view them while watching the video! I hope this helps :)

Sandy8Sandy8 replied

I am totally lost ,with the b & c strumming techniques . I need to see it written out How many down down down ups are there ?. Im a little surprised the easier lessons were spelled out this is not .Down up ,down up is easy. But after the first down down down up does it than go back to down down up again. I am very lost and frustrated. Also the same with strum 3 how does that play out?

Bradley.ConwayBradley.Conway replied

Hi Sandy8! You can actually see the strumming pattern in the PDF just above the staff lines in the tablature. The character that looks like "∏" will always be a down strum, while the character that looks like a "V" is a strum up. If it is shown in one measure but not the next that typically means that the same strumming pattern repeats. I hope this helps :)

GorthaurgGorthaurg replied

Great teacher! Thank.

LSCalgaryLSCalgary replied

I love your teaching style Steve!! Thanks for keeping it fun and helping us learn how to play Guitar :)

thomasduncanthomasduncan replied

Syeve thanks for sharing you are an awesome teacher

KengisKengis replied

This is really helpful. Thanks

mylifeasenomylifeaseno replied


pauldarcherpauldarcher replied

on pattern you could do it slower pleqse - hard to follow at your speec!!

bdycusbdycus replied

Is this a guitar lesson or a guitar lecture? Tighten it up, man!

Rick4076Rick4076 replied

I don't understand what the dropped b is I've rerun the video a dozen times but don't get it can anyone help?

Rick4076Rick4076 replied


Rick4076Rick4076 replied

Steve it looks to me that either the tabs and lesson review is wrong on the #3 of the strumming technique or the video is. In the video of the "B" rhythm you say G,C,G,D7,G but the info says G,C,D7&,G. Which is correct I want to make sure I'm following you right?

Omega_RoninOmega_Ronin replied

Why is it hard to up-strum ? I think it's because I'm afraid of playing too loudly. Sometimes I miss the up-stroke or mess up my counting

Omega_RoninOmega_Ronin replied

Why is it hard to up-strum ? I think it's because I'm afraid of playing too loudly. Sometimes I miss the up-stroke or mess up my counting

Romas411Romas411 replied

Enter your comment here.

Romas411Romas411 replied

The introduction... Priceless....

joseph97joseph97 replied

so far its still hard but im getting the hang of it

edjoeedjoe replied

Steve, thank you for sharing your experience in learning to play guitar. I took lessons for a year as an early teen but never got the bug. Last week I was walking by a music store in NYC and went in determined to purchase a travel guitar to learn on. Your lesson plan has motivated me to practice every day and I enjoy looking ahead while perfecting the lesson I'm on currently. Thx for your efforts.

BrutalityBrutality replied

I have been playing for 9 years now. I can play anything Randy Rhoads or Eddie Van Halen has ever written, and yet when i try to write my own music it never comes together. I end up with a soar wrist and the simple warms ups you have given me have changed everything. I've taught myself a lot of bad habits and all though they will be tough to break it will add stamina to my playing.

rhythmmarcrhythmmarc replied

wow i must say steve is an excellent teacher 3 things he taught me tonight 1.up and down strumming in the past ive really struggled with it but within 20 minutes of steves training im 100% better-2.i use to use a picking pick from strumming tonight steve taught me for strumming you usde the lighter pick soi mmuch easier n no horrible noises-3.early days but steve tonight taught me to change chords while still strumming thank you very much steve i look forward to your lessons oh happy halloween to you and!

djarnotdjarnot replied

steve strumming lesson was fantastic! I'm 63 recently retired and have on my bucket list learning to play the guitar, with teaching like that I just might get there. thanks!

martyrogersmartyrogers replied

Great teacher! Thank you. I will repeat Phase 1 lessons as many times as needed to get it down.

sonnygzzsonnygzz replied

Good teaching!

2h2h replied

Great instructor. Love your style man. Many thanks.

mwats0918mwats0918 replied

I have learned more from these 3 lessons than I did in 6 months of lessons from a live instructor. Thanks!!!

poppygopoppygo replied

Way to go finally learning to count,really like the way Steve teaches!

mwats0918mwats0918 replied

I have learned more from these 3 lessons than I did in 6 months of lessons from a live instructor. Thanks!!!

hyattbakerhyattbaker replied

I have had a guitar for 15 years have taken maybe a total 10 private lessons and have struggled through some Mel Bay stuff. I have learned more in these three lessons than all other combined. It has given me the encouragement to keep going thank you Steve and JamPlay!

elsampleelsample replied

Yes, I agree. Over the past 7 years, I have had several good musicians, but most are poor teachers. JamPlay is very good for me as well. Keep learning never give up.

zertndozertndo replied

It would be better if you showed the left hand view from the perspective of the guitar playing and not the student. That way the student can match the fingering on the fret board more accurately. No offense intended, but Steve's fingers are pretty big and hard to see, from the student perspective which string and fret he is actually playing.

camachocamacho replied

I am quite slow with the left hand :/, when changing Dm to Cm...

ngouldngould replied

HI. I am confused. On the "D" strumming pattern you first say to go down up down up rest up down up but later he goes down down up up down up? Which is it?

normannorman replied

I also like to play the classical guitar. What is the intro music you are playing on it. Am enjoying the lessons very much. I am an off and on again 78 year old trying to learn. Right now I am on and motivated by a new acoustic

steveeulbergsteveeulberg replied

The Intro Music for this lesson is "Planxton's Farewell".

orangeloverorangelover replied

Steve, just want to tell you how much I love your teaching style. I'm an older gal who wants to enjoy playing a little guitar while sitting on my porch and you're getting me there. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Claudia

jdwyerjdwyer replied

Down strum: feeling like I'm hitting all the right strings; up strum: I feel like I'm missing the last string or two, e.g., strumming up on the G chord I sometimes miss the B and E string. I'm using a pick, by the way. Is it okay to look where my right hand is playing, at least until I get a better feel for it? Thanks. P.S. I'm a perfectionist and not proud of it. But Steve's comment about the right hand being the clock and that keeping up with the choir is more important than getting the chords perfect was exactly what this perfectionist needed to hear. Thanks.

africa2013africa2013 replied

does anyone know where I can get a printed copy of the strumming patterns (A,B, C, D) that Steve talks about?

Pete60Pete60 replied

In the supplemental content area

bergmanrcbergmanrc replied

I’d be having fun… if it wasn’t for that dang C Major Chord. Playing the “Easy C” is no problem; and most of the time I can even hit the “E” (4th string 2nd finger). But making the reach to “C” (5th string – 3rd finger) I either mute or “twang” a string or two. Every once in awhile I can play the C Chord if I bend my index finger & play the C note (2nd string) using the top of my finger nail but I don’t want to start any bad habits. I did notice the C Chord is played with the fingers at a slight angle. Anyway, I’ll keep at… it’s hard to work on chord progression if one can’t play the chord. :) Speaking of Chord progression… I came across this nice exercise on YouTube (for anyone who is interested in more material):

xxMitchellxxxxMitchellxx replied


ajm7danajm7dan replied

Hi Steve (or anyone that can help) I have been playing for a year and can't seem to get rid of an unwanted twang when I strum chords. I have recently done a couple of open mic nights and the problem is worse through a pa. Is it string thickness, pick thickness, technique? Please help

madmax2003madmax2003 replied

your string is loose you need to get a new one

caseddoncaseddon replied

Hello Steve, for some reason, I cannot receive the 3rd lesson. Your video jams all the time. I do not have issues with the 2nd and 4rth lesson. I am currently in Germany. I don't think it's the internet connection. And I do not have issues with the other video clips. Thanks in advance, Christiane currently in Germany

cporantescporantes replied

I had the same problem with some of the videos. What I found is that if you set your quality to a lower setting, the video will load. It worked for me at medium.

jayden2002jayden2002 replied

Hey Mr. Steve what kind of pick would you prefer for me more of a flimsy pick or a hard pick yours is flimsy so I was wondering because my thumb down stroke sounds good but the index finger up stroke doesn't sound well but I made one down stroke only song and I have no clue how I made it sound good. Oh and I'm having a bit of trouble on certain lessons I have been practicing though my fingers slip and stuff or hits the wrong cords a lot though.

madmax2003madmax2003 replied

thick picks in my opion are way better cause you can strum lighter and smoother

vernonw.vernonw. replied

i am in phase 1 lessons with steve uelberg for beginners and startsd lessn 3 made it thru scene 4 but it says scene five vidio not found how do i get thru the rest of the lesson

riverrats77riverrats77 replied

hi steve. i love the intro song. it's absolutely beautiful.

riverrats77riverrats77 replied

great lesson. will my fingers ever memorize the chords? i have trouble with c & d7. i wish my fingers would just form the chord and go there. practice, practice, practice i guess.

steveeulbergsteveeulberg replied

Yes, they will, but there is only one way to make it happen--your fingers have to do it alot! Try Easy C- D7 and get that to work without thinking, then add the full C and keep the 1st finger planted on the B string.

andy130566andy130566 replied

Hi Steve, Great lesson thanks. The only thing I am confused about is that in the PDF for the lesson the metronome mark is given as 60 for the first two exercises but the time signatures are 9/8 & 5/8. Can you give some guidance on what the tempo should be for these? I think the first should be 45 dotted 1/4 notes but I haven't a clue how to convert the 5/8 chromatic scale exercise.

demonwolf84demonwolf84 replied

I have a question about the the strumming and, where my wrist should be. I find that I am much more accurate with is sitting on the saddle however, my palm is slightly touching the E,A,D strings causing a deading of the sound. If I have my wrist off the saddle I am less accurate but, faster. I also pretty much have to look at my hand the whole time to make sure I am hitting the right strings. So I guess my question is.. Should I continue with my wrist floating for lack of a better term or try to keep it on the saddle?

bpatnaikbpatnaik replied

ahhhhhh I can PLAY and it doesnt sound gross. Thanks a ton Steve.

bpatnaikbpatnaik replied

ahhhhhh I can PLAY and it doesnt sound gross. Thanks a ton Steve.

pumpkinpumpkin replied

Ahhhhh....What a delight you are Steve! I have been singing and 'attempting' to jam with a good friend the past several years. Well....they relocated and I was one 'lost' lady..until I finally found you my friend! Your style of teaching is very 'soothing' to this 7o year old lady! Thanks for being here and I shall be praticing the '5-finger' items you have taught.

dceciledcecile replied

Hi Steve I had restrung my acoustic some time ago and the saddle fell out and i was wondering the correct way it goes back so that the higher end of it is at the low E or the high E I had it so that the high end was at the high E and watching U it looked like the high end was at the low E

technorattechnorat replied

Why are the strings tuned to notes EADGBE? If it were tuned to EADGCF then the 5th fret tuning would be consistent across all the strings. Why make this irregular G to B instead of the consistent G to C jump?

buckeye801buckeye801 replied

Hey gang! Is it just me or is it normal to wear my fingertips raw? I thought playng the guitar was supposed to be a joyful (not painful) experience. It seems so difficult for me to get a nice clear ring on the strongs without having to press extremely hard. Give me something to go on. Do I need to play through the pain.

michaela65michaela65 replied

When Bryan Adams said "played it till my fingers bled" (Summer of 69) he was surely onto something.

carnitronzcarnitronz replied

Just be patient with your fingers, they will hurt until you have developed calluses.If your playing til they are or almost bleeding give your hands a day off. Even after developed fingertips you can still sense uncomfort if you don't play regularly. Hope that helps, the pain does go away :)

gitgalgitgal replied

My first thought is that you might need to have a qualified guitar tech adjust the 'action' on your guitar. Perhaps by lowering the action just a little it will be easier to fret your guitar and you will have less soreness on your fingers. What kind of guitar are you playing?

cjrlincolncjrlincoln replied

Hi Steve, this was my third course with you and I have to say things got a lot more interesting. I've been messing around (very badly) with a guitar for a number of years, but you are bringing me up to scratch. Thanks!

danielwayneguitardanielwayneguitar replied

Steve is the man!

lupseelupsee replied

Hello Steve, I realy don't get the D pattern of srumming----is it downup down up rest updown rest downup downup rest updown rest etc? Tlks !

kenzhukenzhu replied

i have a question, when i strum a C chord, i strum down for 5 strings, when i strum up, should i strum 5 strings too? it seems difficult.

venkat7venkat7 replied


rca11rca11 replied

hello steve,that leson thougt me 2 things.1:to never stop struming while im changing chourds and number 2 to use a pick cause my thumb started to bleed afterwrads but still your lesons are the best:) thats what i think any way.

gkelly185gkelly185 replied

What I would like is on, all-inclusive "cheat" sheet of the strum patterns. It may be somewhere in but it would be great to have it here or at least linked. Love the way Steve teaches!!! Thank you!!! Really, thank you!!!

harleykharleyk replied

Enter your comment here.

doug pickettdoug pickett replied

I seem to have no sense of rhythum. I am having one devil of a time getting past the "up / down strumming excercises. I keep hitting extra strings and loosing the rhythum - - even with the metronome. I can't seem to get the change from G to C with out have a really bad muted sound from poor finger placement. AND the 50 each strokes hurt my finger tips. I imagine when I get past this lesson my finger will be like leather up to the second knuckle ;-)

basprellictbasprellict replied

Wow, I thought the chords shapes were totally different? Even though the chord shows G, it labled it as D.

mattbrownmattbrown replied

Hey gang! I just updated the Supplemental Content. Hopefully that will clear up any confusion!

lizplizp replied

Thank you Steve, I am learning so much between your adult and kids lessons. I started playing the start of Nov. In my private 1/2h lessons for 4 times, I only learned 6 chords. Now with you I am learning extensively. This definitely is worth the money plus more. Once again, thank you so much, and now with it being Christmas vacation, I have 10 days to really get into it. Who knows maybe I'll be playing a song before I know it now with you. Merry Christmas!

freddie27freddie27 replied

Thanks for an excellent lesson Steve. As I kid I learned how to strum with my fingers and I am now trying with a pick. Is it a good idea to learn to be able to do both? Thanks

steveeulbergsteveeulberg replied

Fred--I think it is always great to have 2 arrows in your quiver--strumming with fingers and thumb and with a pick. More volume is one benefit of the pick. Cheers

freddie27freddie27 replied

Thanks for an excellent lesson Steve. As I kid I learned how to strum with my fingers and I am now trying with a pick. Is it a good idea to learn to be able to do both? Thanks

freddie27freddie27 replied

Thanks Steve for an excellent lesson. I learned to play as a kid with my fingers but I am now also trying with a pick. Do you think it is good skill to be able to strum with both? Thanks

lizplizp replied

Thank you Steve, I am learning so much between your adult and kids lessons. I started playing the start of Nov. In my private 1/2h lessons for 4 times, I only learned 6 chords. Now with you I am learning extensively. This definitely is worth the money plus more. Once again, thank you so much, and now with it being Christmas vacation, I have 10 days to really get into it. Who knows maybe I'll be playing a song before I know it now with you. Merry Christmas!

cornermancornerman replied

Hey Steve.... Boy-O-Boy, am I glad I came across you here!! Just wanted to say that the lessons are Great! I tried this before with another online place and they are just too fast for this old man. I think taking one's time is most important. Thank you, Thank you... I'm getting it.

poppy wallspoppy walls replied

Hi Steve, I reached a milestone today. After many years of fumbling through strumming I can clearly say I understand. I too, have taken lessons throughout the years and have always given-up because I thought I lacked the timing concept. You made this lesson easy to understand. thank you Steve for bringing this concept to life.

dignindignin replied

Steve, you said bottom strings, but are playing the top string. Is this common terminology?

wiersmawiersma replied

In the tabs schedule, the bottom line corresponds with the string closest to your nose @ the guitar. So that's why he calls the first string the 'bottom' one.

jrusselljrussell replied

My second and third fingers like to stick together. It is hard to separate them enough to get the tip of my third finger down hard enough to get good tone. Is that something that strengthens with time or are my fingers siamese twins?

suhailalam1suhailalam1 replied

this is incredible.. i'm taking lessons from a tutor, and reading whatever books i can, but this is more chock full of info than all of that combined! thank you!

maggiezoemaggiezoe replied

Good Afternoon Steve.... I just started learning how to play guitar a week ago and lerning so much from you. I will be 48 next month and always wanted to lern guitar. I play violin and clarinet already. I am getting the positions of the chords and the strumming down good, but how concern should I be at this point on getting the chords sounding perfect? On the G chord when I play the G & B they sound great, but when I add the pinky on the high E string I loose the good sound of the G & B.

santvermasantverma replied

Use first three fingers, starting from Index finger. Again, it's a matter of preference but it's more easy to use the first three for major open chords.

steveeulbergsteveeulberg replied

Hi maggie, try sliding your thumb behind the neck so that your fingers can still reach B & G while adding your pinky and see if that helps!

kate1kate1 replied

Hi Steve, I have just started to learn guitar and I am really enjoying your lessons. I'm only on Strumming Techniques at the moment and find this quite difficult but will keep practising. I noticed that the plectrum I am using has been slightly dented towards the tip (probably done by my young daughter chewing it!) - does it matter that it's dented?

santvermasantverma replied

Would suggest to get a new one and they are pretty cheap and easy to get. There are three types of Plectrum available: Light, Medium and Heavy and you can select any based on your preference.

robprobp replied

The D pattern alternative was quite easy to play along with Steve, but a lot harder against the metronome. I don't know about others by I'm counting it this way: 1 & 2 & 3 & 4 & D D U U D U Is this how everyone else is counting it?

robprobp replied

Whoops that didn't format right. Here's how I'm counting it: [1 D &] [2 D] [& U][3 pause] [& U] [4 D] [& U]

carolccarolc replied

I can't play D with the metronome. I'm all out of whack. It would help to have someone play it with me for a short time, then it would click. I'll keep at it. What is a good speed? 80 seems too slow, 120 way too fast.

steveeulbergsteveeulberg replied

Try 86 or 90 bpm and see how that goes.

mabroukmabrouk replied

Ok sorry a little confusion here. Can someone spell out all 4 rythums strumming patterns again. This is what I have: Pattern A = DUDUDU Pattern B = DDUMUD Pattern C = DDDUDU Pattern D = DDUUDU Is this correct?

maggiezoemaggiezoe replied

If you go into Supplemental Content it shows you the strum patterns if that helps?

mabroukmabrouk replied

OMG.....thank was cool. Thank you thank you!!!

tommyvasqueztommyvasquez replied

Hi Steve, I just wanted to say Thank You for the lessons--I'm almost 50 years old but have decided to re-learn the guitar from the beginning--seeing how I never got very far doing it my way. Mostly, however, I just wanted to say Thank You--I really appreciate your effort and the manner with which you present the lessons......Tommy

chovie10chovie10 replied

im having a hard time making a quick and good transition from c to g. my g to c is pretty good. any suggestions

charles6471charles6471 replied

just beginning, having trouble with up strums on lesson 3,im hitting the low E&A STRINGS WHEN STRUMMING IN D7, ANY SUGGESTIONS ,

santvermasantverma replied

Keep practicing. At first you will find it difficult to only hit the right notes while strumming as your mind will be concentrating on the chords and shifting while progression. As you are more comfortable, try observing your right hand as well, and strum only the required chords. Also, try preparing your mind, which chord you will hit and what strum pattern you will go with before hitting. Will take some time and practice.

ferhispanoferhispano replied

Practice slow

claudi49claudi49 replied

WOW! This is so awesome! I have wanted to learn guitar for so long! I'm here in PA from CA till Sept. I have this extra time & borrowed guitar, but didn't have lots of extra $. Lessons were too expensive. Steve is a fantastic teacher (i am a teacher) I will go back home a guitar playing fool & surprise my sons & students. Thank you Steve, I can't wait for all my lessons! Yahoo!

aredshawaredshaw replied

I have been playing for years, but never had any professional lessons. Although I am really intermediate in skill, I have been getting some good things out of your beginning lessons. Things I have always wondered about or just never picked up. Thanks so much for your hard work. You are a fun and encouraging teacher. Some guitarists cannot teach, but teaching is definitely your gift. Thanks.

tjazzstjazzs replied

I'm a music teacher and band director in Florida. I have played trumpet all my life but recently started teaching elementary music. The school had an old guitar so I started learning some chords off youtube, etc...but Steve's lessons are sooo much better, super organized and easy to follow. I have been able to gain better technique too:) One question, my left hand finger tips are getting pretty nasty, the skin is pulling away from the finger nail, trying to keep my fingers arched but its still pulling...any advice?

abundantflowabundantflow replied

Steve, thanks for being here as I am finally able to slow down and actually learn how to play the guitar rather than trying to beat it into submission. I hope you don't mind if I put in a plug about my business It's an enzyme product that replaces the need for needing any chemicals to enjoy your hot tub. Good for you and good for the earth : ) Thanks again steve I really enjoy your classes....yeah!

angelanova1angelanova1 replied

Hi Steve, thanks for your way of teaching.. you are a very sweet teacher. A great art or music teacher is like you and not like your old teacher who yelled at you for the counting thing... shame on him :(

theghost1956theghost1956 replied

Hi Steve , great lesson's ,, I'm coming along and find the way you teach is working. Now just gotta practice still lil slow at changing chords but each time gets lil better. Nice tune you wrote and played.

rmonroermonroe replied

Hey Steve, great lesson. I am just having trouble understanding your strum notations on your Chord Progression sheets. I think it is like this, but not sure. Does the symbol that looks like a staple mean to go down and up, and the V symbol mean just down? Or am I way off? thanks

jboothjbooth replied

The actual notation currently doesn't specify up or down, but if you look at the separate/individual strum pattern files you can view the up and down arrows as up and down respectively.

rmonroermonroe replied

Hey Steve, great lesson. I am just having trouble understanding your strum notations on your Chord Progression sheets. I think it is like this, but not sure. Does the symbol that looks like a staple mean to go down and up, and the V symbol mean just down? Or am I way off? thanks

banjaxedbanjaxed replied

I had a lot of trouble remebering the Folk (D) strum , so my way to remember it was to think of a song that used that exact same rhythm, and the song I came up with is an old 60s song Called "Rhythm of the Rain" , Now I have it in my mind forever, I guess my tip is if yopu find it hard remembering a particulat strum pattern , associate it with a song that uses that exact same rhythm , hope that helps some people

lisaklisak replied

Hey Steve, Strumming pattern #4 in the supplemental section has two eighth note downs, two eighth note ups, then a skip and an up down up down. In other words down down up up skip up down up. I believe it's supposed to be down up down up skip up down up. Right?

mr_philmr_phil replied

Hi Steve, really enjoying your lessons. I had some confusion with how you identified each strum pattern. Using A, B, C, and D made me think you where talking about notes. I am clear with that now but perhaps using a numeric system would have been clearer, but that's just me. Thanks for taking the time to read this.

peterhandpeterhand replied

Hi Steve, While I have tuned my guitar using a Korg Chromatic tuner and the built in tuner I dont seem to be able to match your tuning which seems to be a fret down. ie the G seems to be a D! Maybe a quirk of the internet. Not sure here.

ron9488ron9488 replied

Hello Everyone.. I ran across a tip that helped me to keep my pick in place. DRILL a hole in it. It really helps to keep it in place. I tried almost everything from tacky glue to sandpaper and nothing really worked until I drilled a hole in the fat part of the pick. It doesn't need to be a big hole.. an 1/8" or maybe a bit bigger. Problem solved. My pick doesn't creep anymore. Try IT.

rydawg723rydawg723 replied

I just want to comment that I am having an amazing learning experience. When I first heard about JamPlay, I basically started on the first teacher I saw and I will say that Steve Eulberg is an awesome instructor. I greatly like the song he plays at the end of this lesson, and have set a goal that I might be able to play that same song. Keeping it up, and never giving up!!!

kevinckevinc replied

Hi Steve, I can't seem to hold my pick in place. After a few measures of strumming, it keeps rotating (pointing towards the nut). Any tips to help with this?

steveterrysteveterry replied

Hi Steve Really really enjoying your teaching methods and sense of humour. Never thought I'd ever be a musician but thanks to you the "door is now open" (lesson4)!! Thanks so much Steve

kd44kd44 replied

Kevin it's more important that you have a pick you are comfortable with, they make a product called "gorilla snot" it helps you hold the pick, I don't have this problem anymore and it's probably caused from having to much of the pick sticking out from your fingers.

metropolis2kmetropolis2k replied

Yes I have the same issue ... Guess I'll have to try getting a pick with a 'pattern' on it so it won't slip. Very annoying!

hastern1hastern1 replied

I am new to guitar like many of you. Any like many of you , I am having problems with Steve's ex of 50 strums per chord (G, D, D7). I can get about 20 strums in then my pick starts to travel in my hand. Still not comfortable after 4 days of practicing this lesson. Will I ever get it? Will try the Cats tongue and the gorilla snot. Also when switching between chords I have a habit to stop strumming till I am on the chord.

jessjammerjessjammer replied

Especially on an acoustic, I like to use a thumb pick. Some folks see that as kind of a cheat, but look at it like it's always nicer to hug when you're hugged you back. ;-) It also frees up an extra finger for picking. Sold in various thicknesses, most (even the light ones) are too thick to directly sub for a plain flat pick going out the shop door. However, once you get them home, you can easily fine tune the thickness with a piece of sandpaper or file. You may have to look around for a brand or thickness that suits you best. Many shops don’t carry a wide selection or finger picks. Finally, I don't recommend working on the pick while your guitar is around your neck, on your lap, between your knees, or wherever. You could drop a tool and damage your instrument. Play with the pick for a bit, put the guitar somewhere safe, and work on the pick off to the side, away from the guitar.

sherrymarysherrymary replied

Hi Steve, I am very much a beginner and love your lessons. I appreciate the thoroughness of your teaching. I AM persevering BUT I must be more coordination-ally challenged than I thought 'cause I'm really struggling with 1. Switching chords fluently and 2. My finger tips feel like they're being cut with razor blades! I figure I must be holding the strings too tight but when I loosen a bit, then the note isn't right. I get very frustrated and end up cutting my practice time shorter than I'd like and I don't feel like I'm progressing at the rate I should. Any tips for the finger placement or what you think my problem may be--other than just female sensitive skin??

kd44kd44 replied

another thing to consider Sherry, is while now you are having to apply more get a sound, once you have your callouses, you won't have to press so hard. Keep perservering.

tifosotifoso replied

I do not claim to be very good but have learned a few things. It can take weeks to build up enough callus that the finger tips do not complain. Not much you can do but persevere. If I do not play for even two weeks, I pay the price. A tip. Do NOT wash your hands around practice time. As horrid as it sounds, that includes after using the toilet. Never, ever use hand cream on your finger tips. What makes you lovably soft fights the formation of callus. If you absolutely must wash your hands, wait about 45 minutes before starting practice again. And that brings up another point. If your fingers hurt to where you cannot take any more after ten minutes, break your practice into multiple short sessions. As callus forms, you will be able to go longer and longer. Another thing: keep your left-hand nails so short that the nails do not touch the strings when you press on them. I have a clipper and a file in my guitar case. You can buy stick on nails if you want to be stylish.

sherrymarysherrymary replied

Thank you! I will try all of that!

jlhulseyjlhulsey replied

Lesson 3: (strumming patterns)... I am very confused about the folk strum. Is it down up, down up, rest up, down up or down rest, down rest, rest up, down up or something else?

jlhulseyjlhulsey replied

Hi Steve: I am elderly (69) and just began taking lessons. I am on lesson 3 and am confused about the "D type (Folk)" strumming pattern. It seems that you have used two different patterns; one DU DU RU DU and the other D DU Ru DU. Am I confused is this what you intended? I would appreciate you input. By the way, at my age, learning music is a challenge. Leroy

jboothjbooth replied

Play both :) The real thing to keep in mind when strumming is it's not as much about memorizing an exact pattern as it is "playing with feeling." Try playing both of those variations, and the other patterns he taught, and when you are playing on your own learn to use these, or modify them to suit your mood.

gunnygunny replied

Steve...correct me if I am wrong...either it is my computer or your web camera. I see a blur when you are strumming. I am thinking that you may need to upgrade your web camera. My conp has all the latest and upgrades regarding performance issues.

wanahmad68wanahmad68 replied

I wonder how to keep the pick still. When I strum, the pick moves and slide towards the finger tips.

smurfsmurf replied

Try a pick with some texture on it.(cat's tongue) I had the same problem, this solved it for me.

ffish13ffish13 replied

I am really enjoying the lessons Steve. I am certain that I will be on this lesson for at least a week. I am having a hard time with the up strum. I think I haven't figured out how to hold the pick just right. I've tried both of the ways you show but I hasn't click yet. I'll keep at it. Thanks.

balaarvindbalaarvind replied

Just wanted to know if people in this forum are more comfortable with a pick or using fingers?....I am more confortable using a pick as the sound is lot crisper.

droogishdroogish replied

I can get a sound right, but am struggling on the chord change, I can do it if I let my left hand "be the boss", but it feels impossible to switch chords without a massive pause when my right hand sets the there any tips for this? or just practise practise...practise?

bones67bones67 replied

One thing you can try is to leave out that last UP strum before you change cords. That gives you a whole beat to make the change. Slowing down to a tempo where you can make the change will help, too. As you keep practicing, your speed will improve.

robprobp replied

The 50 reps exercise is a lot harder than it looks - at least for me! :) I have always had trouble with strumming and timing - i could kind of do it, but invariably it would go out of time. This exercise really improves stanima and the ability to keep a steady beat. I have also found that it is make 1/8th notes more 'natural' for me to play. Actually got the whole way through the 50 rep exercise today - for the first time (had to count alound though). Will be doing this for at least a week before moving on. I really feel like I'm making progress with these lessons - they are very very good!

robprobp replied

Lol, looks like I'll be doing this exercise for another week again! Have a metronome now, but I still find it hard to last until the end of the 50 reps. On most days it takes around 3 attempts and I have noticed that when doing the first run I find it hard to immediately lock onto the beat. I'm sure this will come with time. But I have to say these lesson's of Steve's are just what I have been looking for! I can't wait to see the next part of the video - that's to be my reward for when I get the 50 rep 1/8th chord rhythm down pat.

robprobp replied

Just cracked the 50 chord rep exercise. Must have done well as the follow on lesson was pretty simple to play, though I have to think about pattern d a little more than the others. This lesson is just awesome!!! Just learning pattern D is something completely new to me and what's more it sounds pretty cool to! It looks like Steve might be winning the impossible task of putting rhythm in me! :))

nednik4324nednik4324 replied

Hi steve, i've got the down up down up etc. pattern down pat, but i find it hard to strum only four or five strings at a time, is there anything i can do?

robprobp replied

The best way is to just slow things down enough so that you get time to 'aim' your strumming hand. Not sure if I should be telling you this(!) But some guitarists will dampen the low E string with their thumb whilst strumming a C chord to prevent it sounding in the event of it accidently being brushed (Some will even dampen both the E and A strings for a D chord!). Whilst this works, I would suggest trying to practice slower and try to avoid hitting the strings! It takes time and repition but you will get there! :)

jet3rryjet3rry replied

Great lessons - thanks, Steve! This is the best investment I've ever made! However, I found when I practiced the strumming 50 times per, my left hand got REALLY tired, even after shaking my hand some. It seems better for me to break up my practice into 2 - 30-minute practices (or even 4 - 15-minute practices), rather than 1 - hour-long practice. Also, I'm trying to be aware when I'm using a "death-grip" on the neck, and to relax a little. :-) Many, many thanks!!!

jc79830jc79830 replied

Steve, Thanks so much for year teaching style. I have been playing for a while and yet the things you are teaching are fundamentals that I missed!

frankiesfrankies replied

I use to wonder when I was a truck driver why the box I was looking for was always the last one on the truck :) Now, I wonder why when learning something new, the course I learn the most from is always the last course I buy. :) Steve, Jamplay could have saved me so much money had I just tried or bought it first. Thanks

karakara replied

I'm an absolute beginner with no natural musical talent but I'm understanding and really enjoying your lessons. Thanks Steve :)

phrasemeisterphrasemeister replied

Same confusion as every one else has stated about the 4th rythym and yet there is no answer ... ummm ??? (why not just fix it and save the confusion ?)

sleipsner777sleipsner777 replied

Hi... Like many here, I love the lessons! My dad could play any stringed instrument. My parents put my brother and me in lessons when I was about 10.. I loved it, but never really grasped the idea. Dad "picked" and I could never understand the difference between the "rhythm" and the picking.. I was so confused! I finally gave it up when I was about 16. I started trying to play again in my early 30's but hit the same road blocks. I love what the www does for education! I bought a guitar less than a month ago, and started with the lessons here and on a few other sites, along with books. I finally have overcome the obstacles, and am now really learning to play! These lessons are wonderful. The different angles that are shown, the ability to rewind as often as needed, the supplemental materials, and the various teaching styles of the available teachers all make this a wonderful learning environment. Being able to ask questions and get a timely answer is the only drawback that I might see... however, I think most can be answered by other members in the forums. I really do wish that Steve had recorded the last strum a little slower. It has me stumped! I just can't seem to get it. I will continue to plow forward, but if anyone has any suggestions, please let me know. I've rewound and rewatched about 20 times. But each time I'm just a little more frustrated. It seems to be a more difficult strum... but maybe I'm just making it that way. I find that I am repeating in my sleep, duddududu... Love the lessons.. love the results!

mickdostiemickdostie replied

great lessons been playing guitar on and off for a few years and i thought i'd start back from the beginning to correct bad habits i've picked up. thanks again steve

jeff6s2jeff6s2 replied

Same here! I'm a 5 year player with some bad habits..trying to start fresh with proper technique. Thanks Steve..enjoying the lessons!

hgraefhgraef replied

Sorry Steve!!! I got them in the supplemental content.Great teacher.Thanks. Hans

hgraefhgraef replied

Hi Steve. This is Hans.Great lesson & teaching style. I really enjoy it. In order to be able to repeat 50X or more every strumming pattern(perfectly) I wouild like to have a drowing with arrows like Down, Up, Rest and so far.Otherwise I will mixed them up. THANKS.

adhintonadhinton replied

The Last strumming pattern he teaches he says some people learn it and never get out of it... SO TRUE... as a matter of fact that is the first strumming pattern I learned and it is extremely difficult for me to strum anything else... when I try to strum differently i find myself getting back into that pattern with out even realizing it... which is why I'm here... I skipped that part of the lesson!!!

sunithasunitha replied

Hi Steve....liked your class on strumming technique.

raeganraegan replied

I too noticed that the supplemental notes on strumming pattern D did not match what he taught in the video. I think that the supp. material must be incorrect and to disregard it and stick with your own notes based on what he taught in the video which was DUDU UDU or DDUUDU. Perhaps they will fix this error soon.

kennyha619kennyha619 replied

Yea I noticed the mistake also, but I believe what he meant to teach was the strumming pattern Steve used for the exercise we did together. The strumming pattern was D DU UDU...

stephaniebstephanieb replied

This lesson states to practice the D Major chord --- it has not been taught yet.

kennyha619kennyha619 replied

in the lesson Steve said the D7 chord not Dmajor...

rhb041452rhb041452 replied

Hi Steve! Great lessons. I am a beginner and have watched 3 of your lessons. I too, like many others am having trouble changing chords while strumming. My left hand wants to control and I have to watch while changing chords. When does all of this fall in together?

lerntzlerntz replied

I definitely like Steve as a guitar teacher. I find him very entertaining; his style of teaching helps me to focus. He makes guitar learning a lot easier than it really is.

yamaha200yamaha200 replied

i like soup

mazzystarlettemazzystarlette replied

Great lesson. I will definately incorporate strumming into my practice routine.

golfgolf replied

i'm comfused also on the #D strumming pattern, he goes to fast over it??????

yosefyosef replied

I'm so confused. I'm working on Steve Eulberg's “Beginner Lessons, Acoustic Guitar,” Lesson 3, scene 4 - “Traditional Folk Rhythm” Stumming Pattern #4/D In the video from 00:00 to 02:13 Steve shows this pattern as DUDU UDU. Then, as he starts into “Blowing in the Wind” the pattern changes to D DU UDU. To resolve my confusion, I went to the “SUPPLEMENTAL CONTENT” tab, and in the “Notation/Tab” box, selected “Strumming Pattern #4/D” which displays DDUU UDU. At that point my head exploded.

gibsonnick95gibsonnick95 replied

Even though i am pretty experienced your beginner are very helpful. Thanks Steve.

louiselasciklouiselascik replied

Hi Steve, Great practice. I am struggling switching from one chord to the other. I know the chords but have trouble transcending to the next chord without looking.

jim allbrittenjim allbritten replied

Could someone advise in how to start the lesson? I do not see aplay or start button. I feel foolish! Thx--Jim

Michael RamseyMichael Ramsey replied

Steve, I love your lessons so far. I have a few issues that I need to ask you about. First, my chord changes are exetremely sloppy(very slow and sometimes incorrect(how to fix that). Second, when I try to strum along with you, I am either strumming too hard both up and down or too soft up and down..also very choppy. How can I fix this problem as well? Thanks in advance.

lucialucia replied

The questions are interesting, I would like to see Steve's responses but I do not see them only the questions. Is there a thread that I am not seeing? Does anyone know how I can read the answers because I too could benefit.

jorgemjorgem replied

Hi Steve, I'm from Protugal and I've been looking for this strumming lessons for years and you make seem so easy. One comment: patern #4/D arrow's diagram is a bit confusing regarding the video. should'nt it be: down,silence,down,up silence,up,down,up,down? Thanks and I'll be with you in next lessons.

oceannnoceannn replied

Hi Steve! I am still having trouble changing chords- it seems to take me a while. Is there anything I can do to improve this, or is it just practice?

tim taylortim taylor replied

Steve, your beginner lessons are great. In the strumming exercise, I'm having difficulty changing chords smoothly and in time. My right hand seems to stop when I change from G to C - what can I do to improve this?

bany_rockbany_rock replied

Hey steve! can u share the tab of the song u play at the beggining and ending of the lesson?? is a composition by you? btw keep on the good work greetings from Monterrey Mexico

bill2bill2 replied

great lesson

whitebomberwhitebomber replied

This is from Steve's phase two lessons, called Planxton's Farewell. Great song that he wrote. I've been working on part 1 of the song and really enjoy playing it.

drpostdrpost replied

It is amazing how different strumming patterns can totally change the sound and feeling with the same 3 cords used. Enjoyed the lesson as always.

haiihaii replied

cool strumming patterns are starting to get interesting!!!! =)

etiennedetienned replied

Hi, it's ok for the downstoke but when it come to the up stroke for the D7 Chord I have difficulty to stop going up a the 4th corde, I'm always hitting the 5th corde. Do you have a tip to make it easier? Thank you

terpyterpy replied

Quality lesson i could change chords prior to this but my strumming patterns where always out this helped to tighten that up cheers.

dewin32dewin32 replied

Hi Steve, really enjoying your lessons, regarding the strumming patterns in the supplement why is there a sharp (#) sign at the beginning of each piece of notation as there are no sharp notes played in the chords. I know i'm jumping the gun a bit here but i'm trying to learn to read music as well as tab. I've seen this before in music, it has a sharp at the beginning and when I play those notes sharp it sounds wrong (why is the sharp sign there at all I think to myself). This is really bugging me and putting me off trying to read music as it makes no sense. Please could somebody enlighten me?

crazybirdcrazybird replied

Sharps or flats noted at the beginning of the staff indicates that those notes are always flatted or sharped (unless canceled by notation during the song). It is also tells you what key the song is in. In Steve's strumming patten, the key is G and the F note is sharped in the G scale.

jnc51jnc51 replied

When a sharp is place on a line or a space anytime a note shows up there it is to be sharped. Same when a flat is shown in the beginning like that.

rossj1rossj1 replied


cehodgincehodgin replied

Thanks - this was great! More strumming, please. Strumming is the thing that makes me hate my playing. I find a song on the internet that I want to play in tab, know all the chords or learn them, but the strumming seems to be something all good guitar players take for granted - it is not as instinctual as it may seem to someone who has been playing a long time. I have trouble hearing what the strum is and it would help if in all of the lessons you would teach the strum as well as the left hand. Thanks.

ralphrralphr replied

Great site!! Steve is an awesome teacher. Wow, I thought I was alone with my chord changes and strumming problems.... a real sense of community! I noticed that Steve has not posted a reply since 2007, is this the best way to get feedback?

jboothjbooth replied

Steve checks the comments section every now and again, but if you would like to make sure he sees it the best place to ask is in his own individual forum.

ralphrralphr replied

Thanks jbooth! I'm new here and just learning my way around.

adris8adris8 replied

I mysef have learnt and remembered over 13 chords and I've had just started playing guitar but my big question is, do i need to chord progess as fast as you would? Because i thought i had to be as fast as you and right now i have difficulties in chord shifting since i always hit the wrong strings and frets. Anything you could say about this?

darsarahdarsarah replied

One more question on strumming...I don't like to use a pick and can't seem to get used to it. I like the feel of the strings directly. When you speak of strumming without a pick you advise to strum down with the thumb and strum up with the pad of the index finger. I like to strum down with the backs of my fingers...extending my fingers as my hand moves downwards and strum up with my thumb and some of my fingers as my hand comes back up. It sounds good and is a lot louder than just using the thumb and index finer and is very natural to this an good alternate method or a bad habit? Thanks!

jboothjbooth replied

Hey there. I'm pretty sure Steve actually plays like this from time to time, as do many instructors. It's a perfectly acceptable way of playing as long as you like the sound. That's one thing to remember, guitarists create their own unique sound and style of playing by choosing the techniques which suite them. Just so you know, while I'm not nearly on a professional level, I also like to strum the same way :) The pick just isn't or me!

darsarahdarsarah replied

Hi Jeff, thanks for the comment :) I am relieved that I'm not doing it all wrong when it felt right ;)

darsarahdarsarah replied

Hi Steve, I just picked up my guitar again after doing so several times over the past 10 years and am really sticking to it this time thanks to the lessons at JamPlay. Lessons around here are $20 for a half hour so this site is a great deal and I can do it on my own time. I too though was confused by the supplemental content regarding the D rhythm as it doesn't seem to match what is covered in the video portion. I wrote down in my notes what it was from the video which is pasted below but it doesn't match what is in the supplemental content. Can you clarify? This is what I that right or is it as written in the supp content? Down Up Down Up Rest Up Down Up Down Down Up Up Down Up

jboothjbooth replied

There's two different variations Steve went over in the lesson (unfortunately one of them was rather quick and unexplained), so your best bet is just to practice both ways. Remember, with strumming, what is important is not necessarily the exact strum pattern but keeping the rhythm and playing with feeling.

fred2634fred2634 replied

Steve, really enjoying the lessons. I like being able to do this after work or on days off as I find the time. A lot of fun! I have to go practice my strums. It seems to help a lot to count 1&2&3&4&.

gotagruvgotagruv replied

Great lessons Thank You

pinkitty26pinkitty26 replied

Hello, So far I am loving the lessons at JamPlay! But, I am having difficulty with the changing of chords, and finger placement. There is just no fluidity between the chords, and I have to stop to place each finger. What can I do to make changing chords more fluid? Thanks!

marylinemaryline replied

it happens to me too...i think the best thing to do is to practice...the more i practice..the more fluid i get....practice makes perfect!!

marylinemaryline replied

Steve!!! Your are the best teacher ever!!!! Thanks!!

panmarcepanpanmarcepan replied

I thing the tips about changing a chord should be placed in lesson 2. Currently when I'm changing a chord to G I usualy miss the first or string, cause my I put my middle finger last. I didn't event notice that before :P I tried to put it first, but... that's like teaching a chord again :P Anyway a great lessons. I've learned in few days more, than in few last weeks with text online tutorials. Kind Regards from Poland Steve ;)

bdhashebdhashe replied

What a incredible way to learn the guitar. I picked up my sons guitar about 10 days ago and haveing never played it before was a little intimidated at first but now i am so excited to play but have to wait for my fingers to heal. i would recommend to the absolute beginner to stop after the basic strumming excersise and then repeat the lessons and practice practice practice.... you will soon amaze yourself. Steve you da Man...............

willycurrowillycurro replied

Thanks, Steve. You're good master.

kennykenny replied

I’ve put off taking lessons for about 25 years and just couldn’t commit to a schedule with a local guitar teacher. I searched on line lessons and found JAMPLAY and I am so happy I did. I can’t tell you how exciting it is for me to be learning and progressing at my own speed and more importantly on my schedule. Steve Eulberg is the perfect teacher in my opinion. If I had him teaching me in school I would have aced everything - he’s fantastic. Thank you Steve and thank you everyone at JAMPLAY! - Kenny

samsowerbysamsowerby replied

Hi Steve, I have to say that your teaching method is exceptional. I was really struggling with keeping time when trying to change chords but already it is beginning to improve. It's funny though because I keep strumming and I haven't even got the chord pressed down properly or at all sometimes and it sounds awful! It makes a alot of difference being able to see how to do things properly instead of just reading out of a book like I was before. Thanks so much, Sam

rockwell845rockwell845 replied

Steve, I'm loving the lessons so far. I'm 27 years old and just learning how to play the guitar. I'm still on Chapter 2 of the lesson and the biggest issue I have is transitioning between the chords and keeping myself strumming at the same time. I tend to find my right hand pausing for a second to make sure my left hand is positioned correctly. the more I'm practicing, the easier I find it, but I'm still having a lot of trouble. The C chord is the toughest for me so far. It's not so hard from the D7th chord, but going from the D7th chord to the G chord gives me trouble too sometimes. My fingers tend to go all weird on me and fingers 1 and 2 seam to go backwards a lot. I know that repetition and practice make it this a lot easier, but I get very self conscious even when I get into a quiet room away from the wife and kids. I just hope that that I can over come this vice and get much better. At this stage I still have a long way to go.

hollyhanoyanhollyhanoyan replied

Hi Steve! I am a new student and you are delightful! I am enjoying my beginner's lessons very much! Thank you for making these videos! Holly

mingofallsmingofalls replied

Steve, in playing the Chomatic scale as you teach, is it ok to slide your hand up and down the 4 frets as your going along, or is your hand suppose to be stationary? I cannot seem to keep my hand stationary b/c of short stubby fingers. I can go through the scales pretty quick as long as I can slide my left hand up and down the fret alittle bit. Is this ok to do? Or is it a bad habit and I should not try this? Thx.

will0529will0529 replied

Hi Steve, I have small fingers and I have a hard time with the G chord ad the finger placement. Is there any other way to do a G chord without having the pinkie all the way to e?

jboothjbooth replied

That's the way to play the "proper" g chord. But the issue is generally not hands being too small, but the hand not being strong enough. Keep trying and I promise you will get there! If you just can't get it after TONS of practice you should probably look into getting a guitar with a smaller neck.

andrewbrittainandrewbrittain replied

Steve First, Thank You! I truly enjoy learning from you. I can't wait for each night to dig in and practice. Second... in your opinion what is they best way to count these measures out. I loose track in B & C and forget where I'm at.. ?? Any help is much appreciated. Thanks again, Andrew PS – wow, I can't believe how much help I need on my strumming.. so many years of bad habits.

steveeulbergsteveeulberg replied

Hi Andrew, Sorry for the delay, I didn't find your post in the forum before. The way I always count these measures is as 8th notes: 1 & 2 & 3 & 4 & (the numbers are the beats of the measure, with the "&" being the space (=note or rest) in-between the beats. When I count this way I find it easier not to speed up (one temptation) or to leave out an important beat or offbeat (the other temptation). I'd count them the same for each of the exercises, but I only play where the strum arrows indicate. Does that make sense? Give it a try and let me know how it works for you. Thanks for the feedback and support, too! Steve

andrewbrittainandrewbrittain replied

Steve, I've been away for while and picking up where I left off.. your advice and help on counting is right on.. thank you!!!.. it makes all the difference.

jboothjbooth replied

Ill forward this to Steve andrew, sorry nobody has answered your question, I guess nobody saw it!

andrewbrittainandrewbrittain replied

OK..I know when I'm being ignored.. :-)

kevinkevin replied

You're not. Steve just didn't have a good way of seeing every single comment (until now). We just finished a control panel for instructors so that they can easily see comments on their videos and respond accordingly. I'd expect you'll have a Eulberg reply here very soon!

rumble dollrumble doll replied

Hi Steve. Really, really enjoying your lessons so far. Having been playing for a little while this lesson in particular has been a great help to me as I have found myself falling into the same strumming pattern for virtually every song I play. This is great as I feel I need to start getting used to playing different patterns. I love your teaching style, it's exactly what I was hoping for and love the humorous examples you use....the boot in the mud one with the bear chasing was just a perfect example. I am now much better at 'leaving my boot in the mud' while I'm playing but when I first started I always used to stop to pick up the wonder I was getting eaten alive by the bear! Lol ;-) Thanks Steve and thanks JamPlay. It's a great site!

gfl23gfl23 replied

Hi Steve. I find your lessons to be highly understandable and helpful. I enjoy whenever you point out something that I just happened to be wondering about, as if you know me. Anyways, I am having a little trouble whenever I strum up on a complete C chord, for example, because I find that I often hit the low E string. Any suggestions? Thanks!

ceyeber62ceyeber62 replied

Clocks, Gorilla snot, what more do you have in store for us?? Great Lesson!

ceyeber62ceyeber62 replied

Steve, Hi, can you tell me what you're playing in the tinro and credits section of this music. I loved the music, and the guitar(!).

silvanasilvana replied

Hi Steve, Im enjoying Every Minute of it love ur work

silvanasilvana replied

omg great lesson :)

megarotmegarot replied

I dont mean to complain - great lesson - but i noticed on the supplemental that the D strum is just slightly off. While watching Steve I learned the pattern it doesnt quite match the strum pattern visually. There's an extra down at the very very end. Down, down, up - up down up should complete the measure but if you look back at picture it shows an extra down. Its just something that threw me for a loop because I looked at the material before watching the episode. Anyhoo - good teaching Steve. Thanks!

picknplay1944picknplay1944 replied

Practice! Practice! Practice! I will learn these strumming techniques!

hawker800hawker800 replied


skaterstuskaterstu replied

Thanks Steve... this lesson is very valuable for me as previously my strumming has been very poor... it's difficult to learn strumming techniques from a static webpage, but these video lessons are very helpful. Just started Scene 4, and I am pretty excited about this drunken purchase I made last night. Btw... what is it about your fascination with soup? I have noticed that you have mentioned soup in a few of your lessons, with particular reference to Campbells Soup... is this product placement techniques to get everyone buying this brand ;-)? Thanks again, really helpful... I really like your style of teaching.

ashleylashleyl replied

Hi Steve!! Just like everyone else I can't thank you enough for taking the time to make these beginner videos. Especially for someone like me who is a visual learner. This lesson is awesome because as a new guitarist strumming and changing chords has been the most difficult for me. For some reason every time I go to change chords my strumming stops and then picks back up once I've changed the chord. This lesson has helped me to focus on keeping the rhythm with my right hand while transitioning with my left. Just like RollingThunder I got confused on which strumming pattern was D but thanks to jbooth and everyone commenting I realized that I should be using the supplement data too. JamPlay is simply awesome!! It's kind of a catch 22 for me. On one hand I want to tell my friends who are also learning guitar about this awesome site but on the other hand I want to keep it a secret all to myself...;) or at least until I get a lot better! Ugh! The humanity of it all!!!

rollingthunderrollingthunder replied

Hi Steve, Im enjoying Every Minute of it? Here is my question. Lesson#3 Scene#4 you discuss strumming pattern D. When your written instructions say "drop the first two up strums, making it down down skip beat up down up" and then at 2:40 seconds into your video you show a DDU_UDU pattern. and then back at 2:00 into video you show DUDU_UDU. And then when i look at supplemental content it seems to be another variation. So am i correct that what i just described is 4 different variations of D Pattern? Can you clairify any of this for me. Thank You for your time.

rollingthunderrollingthunder replied

Well it looks like my subscription may run out before I get a reply to this question.

jboothjbooth replied

Hello, you wrote in to our ticket support system and I believe your question was answered. But you are right, the important thing of a strumming pattern is a feel and not necessarily the exact pattern. Steve showed a folk pattern and put his own variations on it because when you really get into rhythm you play out of feel. I think that's a very important thing to begin to understand is that while exact strumming patterns are great for exercises, when you get to writing your own music or playing other peoples they are really not that useful. I have added to the image another strum pattern so that you can see while they are slightly different they still retain the same overall "feel".

steveeulbergsteveeulberg replied

Hi Evny, What a great idea for muting the guitar sound! I've done that with hammered dulcimer before, but never thought of it for guitar. Perfect for living among neighbors or roomates who are light sleepers or on a different schedule than you. It is always gratifying to see one's progress, isn't it? What a great motivator! Thanks for the feedback, Steve

evnyevny replied

This lesson is really helpful for me as well. I am left handed, but took guitar lessons right handed many years ago. I'm not about to start all over again playing left handed, but my right hand is definitely less coordinated. Doing these strumming exercises with a metronome, I'm already making some progress. I have to admit, I put a cloth under the strings to spare the neighbors.

steveeulbergsteveeulberg replied

Hey robbi23, glad to know you've found the right match to accompany you on your musical journey. And thanks--I keep telling people I'm funny! Can I get a reference from you? Steve

robbi23robbi23 replied

This lesson is an eye-opener for me personally. I've always known a couple of chords, but really struggled to make songs sound right. I knew my strumming was way off but I really didn't know how to change it no matter how hard I tried. Recently I had a teacher for about 3x50 min sessions, I was very unhappy with his teaching style and ended up with a full refund. This lesson is worth alone is worth the year's fee I paid a couple of days ago. P.S. Steve you're one funny guy.

steveeulbergsteveeulberg replied

Hey grubby--you have the eagle eye and get the prize! Yes, complete G chord needs all three notes. (If you start strumming at the D string, you'll get the D you're missing). Because of the layout of strings, the chords have different voicings (not all are in root position) and some shapes are called chords, even though technically they are "partial" chords. (They have less than the three required notes, but have enough to suggest tonality.) In this case, strumming the highest three strings while playing the easy G shape produces the notes you mention, which are the root and the third of the G chord, enough to establish tonality. While this is helpful for getting started (hence the label "easy" G), it is certainly not as satisfying and full as the "regular" G which uses all 6 strings. Thanks for your post! Steve

jboothjbooth replied

It's not really meant to be a full chord or a replacement for the full G. It's just something that sounds good together to get absolute beginners feet wet until they can get used to fingering the full thing. Think of it like building the chord in two parts for those who have literally never touched a guitar =)

grubbygrubby replied

In order to be a valid chord for G - wouldn't it require a G/B/D (I, III, V) combination? The "easy G" is a G/B/G combination as shown. What am I missing?

steveeulbergsteveeulberg replied

Thanks, Terry! Planxton's Farewell is included in the original soundtrack I composed for a DVD entitled "Serenade to the Canada Goose." At this time it is not available as a single or separate track. The DVD is 29 minutes full of stunning imagery of a year in the life of Canada Geese, here on the front range of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. Planxton's is from the late summer/early fall section. The DVD is available from my website: [url][/url] Thanks for your feedback and interest! Steve

jboothjbooth replied

I believe it is called Planxton's Farewell. I don't know if it's on any of his albums but you can learn it in the Phase 2 fingerstyle section =)

alphaalpha replied

how fast should i start doing the 50x chord exercise? can you give me a tempo? i have to change chords while playing (450 strums total and change chord at each 50) or do lets say 50x G, stop, 50xC, stop, 50xG? thank you :)

terryterry replied

Hello Steve Two things: First : Compliments on your teaching style and methods. I'm an absolute novice and depite the bleeding finger ends ( ok- it only feels like that!), I'm really enjoying my lessons. Secondly: What's the peice you play at the start of lesson three? It is lovely. Is it available on Cd or MP3 ? Best Regards Terry, Yorkshire, UK

john oconnor59john oconnor59 replied

;) Hi Steve Its Johnny From Ireland Well Now This Is The Lesson I Wanted Because Although I Have Been Playing A Year And Know About 12-14 Chords My Strumming Was Never Right Well I Have Watched And Played Along To Your Lesson On Strumming The Different Strums..dududu And Ddududud And Ddududud And The Folk Strum Its The Best Lesson I Ever Got Its What I Wanted Now I Am Practicing Them And My God What A Difference It Makes When I Have The Proper Teacher To Show Me ;) And Know What I Am Doing I Am Going Stick With This Lesson Untill I Got It Nailed Then Perhaps In A Day Or Two I Shall Move On To The Next Lesson I Cant Thank You Enough ;) Your So Laid Back Its A Pleasure And I Really Look Forward To My Different Lesson Each Nite As I Work In The Day Cant Thank You Enough Its The Best Move I Made To Join This Playjam, I Be In Touch When I Do The Next Lesson Ok Kind Regards Johnny The Emerald Isle Of Ireland,,(this Is Me First Day On Playjam Its Fabalous Thank You....;)

inspector710inspector710 replied

It kind of confused me , too. Admittedly-no great feat. I got- down up,down up-up down up. is that right?

jboothjbooth replied

If I remember correctly, while editing the video, Steve actually played that two slightly different ways. I'll watch it again and make sure though and fix the tab accordingly if need be.

millaTKmillaTK replied

Hi Steve! Great lesson on strumming... it just makes me sad that it took me a week to be able to watch it fully... not because I couldn't get the rhythms, but because I couldn't find the time to watch... never mind .. I have one question: In the supplemental content, the strumming pattern #D is indicated as: Down Up Down Up (rest) Up Down Up, like the #A pattern with a rest on the 3d beat, While it seems to me that you play: Down (rest) Down Up (rest) Up Down Up, like the #B pattern with an additional rest on the 3d beat Am I right or is my ear failing? Thank you!

Basic Guitar with Steve Eulberg

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

Phase 1 Acoustic Lessons with Steve Eulberg is a great place to begin your journey as a guitarist. With over 30 years of playing experience, Steve appreciates the importance of beginning your guitar training the correct way - no bad habits! These lessons are not just for acoustic players. Electric guitarists will receive the same benefits from this lesson series.

The Absolute BasicsLesson 1

The Absolute Basics

You will learn the parts of the guitar and how they function. Steve also discusses the importance of technique.

Length: 45:09 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Your First ChordsLesson 2

Your First Chords

Three simple chords will literally enable you to play millions of songs. In this lesson, you will learn the primary chords for the key of G.

Length: 40:00 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Strumming TechniqueLesson 3

Strumming Technique

Now that Steve has taught some chords, he will go over the proper methods of strumming and right hand technique.

Length: 42:00 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
All About ChordsLesson 4

All About Chords

This lesson is all about the various aspects of chords.

Length: 39:00 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Chord TheoryLesson 5

Chord Theory

Steve explains how basic triads are formed in this lesson. He also explains the relationship between scales and chords.

Length: 40:12 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Intro to FingerpickingLesson 6

Intro to Fingerpicking

Steve Eulberg introduces you to the wonderful world of fingerpicking.

Length: 51:00 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Bringing it TogetherLesson 7

Bringing it Together

Steve starts to weave the strings of the past lessons together.

Length: 47:00 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Chords, Keys and RelationshipsLesson 8

Chords, Keys and Relationships

This episode delves further in the realm of chords, scales, keys and the relationships between them. You will also learn some new chords.

Length: 34:25 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Barre ChordsLesson 9

Barre Chords

This lesson covers power chords and barre chords. You will learn how these chords are formed and how to apply them.

Length: 38:24 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Tools for GuitarLesson 10

Tools for Guitar

Steve explains how basic tools such as the metronome, capo, and picks aid your guitar playing. Enjoy!

Length: 27:12 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Playing Lead and ScalesLesson 11

Playing Lead and Scales

This lesson gets you into the basics of playing melodies on the guitar. Playing melodies and solos is often referred to as "lead guitar."

Length: 45:00 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Hand StretchesLesson 12

Hand Stretches

Steve demonstrates some great stretches for the hands, wrists and upper arms.

Length: 8:12 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Different GuitarsLesson 13

Different Guitars

Steve discusses the difference between the steel string acoustic, classical, and 12 string guitars.

Length: 12:00 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Changing Guitar StringsLesson 14

Changing Guitar Strings

This lesson is all about changing guitar strings. This process can be very frustrating, but it doesn't have to be. Learn some great tips from Steve.

Length: 37:00 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Timing and TempoLesson 15

Timing and Tempo

Steve Eulberg delves into the wonderful world of rhythm and time signatures.

Length: 29:00 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Circle of FifthsLesson 16

Circle of Fifths

Steve Eulberg introduces the Circle of Fifths. He demonstrates a song that features a Circle of Fifths progression.

Length: 15:30 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Clearing Up ConfusionLesson 17

Clearing Up Confusion

In this lesson Steve attempts to clear up some confusion with previous lessons. He will talk about reading tablature, note names, chord names and more.

Length: 15:52 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Review and Moving OnLesson 18

Review and Moving On

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

Length: 12:44 Difficulty: 2.0 FREE
Completing LessonsLesson 19

Completing Lessons

Steve answers the popular question, "When should I move on to the next lesson?" by sharing his personal goals and some important advice.

Length: 6:19 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Steve Eulberg

About Steve Eulberg View Full Biography An Award-winning multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter, Steve Eulberg weaves mountain and hammered dulcimers with a variety of unusual instruments to create thought-provoking, smile-inducing, toe-tapping acoustic experiences.

He has sung and composed for religious communities, union halls, picket lines, inter-faith retreats, mountain-top youth camps, as well as the more familiar venues: clubs, coffeehouses, bookstores, festivals, charity benefits and showcase concerts.

Born and raised in the German-heritage town of Pemberville, Ohio, Steve was exposed to a variety of music in his home. Early piano lessons were followed by trumpet in school band, and he became self-taught on ukelele and guitar and harmonica. Mandolin was added at Capital University where, while majoring in History, he studied Ear Training, Voice and took Arranging lessons from the Conservatory of Music.

While at college, he first heard hammered and mountain dulcimers, building his first mountain dulcimer just before his final year. Seminary training took him the west side of Denver where he built his first hammered dulcimer. With these instruments, he was able to give voice to the Scottish, English and Irish traditions to which he is also heir.

Following marriage in 1985 to Connie Winter-Eulberg he settled in Kansas City, Missouri. There he worked cross-culturally in a church of African-Americans, Latinos and European Americans, with music being a primary organizing tool. He moved with his family in 1997 to be nestled beside the Rocky Mountains in Fort Coillins, Colorado.

Founder of Owl Mountain Music, Inc. he teaches and performs extensively in Colorado and Wyoming with tours across the US and the UK. He delights in introducing the “sweet music” of dulcimers to people in diverse settings and in addition to his own recordings, has included dulcimers in a variety of session work for other musicians.

In 2000 he was commissioned to create a choral composition featuring dulcimers for the Rainbow Chorus in Fort Collins. It was recorded in the same year (BEGINNINGS). He is currently at work on a commissioned symphony that will feature hammered dulcimer and Australian didjeridu.

Eulberg passionately believes that music crosses cultural and language barriers because music builds community. Influenced by a variety of ethnic styles, his music weaves vital lyric with rap, rock, folk, gospel and blues. Audiences of all ages respond well to his presentation and to his warm sense of humor.

Steve is a member of Local 1000 (AFM), The Folk Alliance, BMI and BWAAG (Better World Artists and Activist's Guild).

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Robbie Merrill Robbie Merrill

JamPlay welcomes bassist and founding member of Godsmack, Robbie Merrill. In this short introduction lesson, Robbie showcases...

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Hawkeye Herman Hawkeye Herman

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

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

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Mitch teaches his interpretation of the classic "Cannonball Rag." This song provides beginning and intermediate guitarists...

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Tyler Grant is back with an introduction to his new series "Classic Country Chops." In this series, Tyler goes in-depth...

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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...

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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.

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Mark Kailana Nelson Mark Kailana Nelson

Mark Nelson introduces "'Ulupalakua," a song he will be using to teach different skills and techniques. In this lesson, he...

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Straten Marshall Straten Marshall

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John Shannon John Shannon

Meet John Shannon and his approach to rhythm guitar. John discusses why he put this lesson series together and what his...

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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...

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Rafael Moreira Rafael Moreira

Playing your scales and improvising horizontally on one string is a great way to visualize the scale degrees, and also a...

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John DeServio John DeServio

JD teaches the pentatonic and blues scales and explains where and when you can apply them.

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Eric Madis Eric Madis

In this lesson Eric talks about playing basic lead in the Memphis Blues style.

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Tosin Abasi Tosin Abasi

Tosin explains some of the intricacies of the 8 string guitar such as his personal setup and approach to playing.

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Stuart Ziff Stuart Ziff

Stuart delves into all the different aspects of how R&B guitar has had an impact within reggae music.

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Bryan Beller Bryan Beller

Bryan Beller of the Aristocrats, Dethklok, and Steve Vai takes you inside his six step method to learning any song by ear....

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Steve Stevens Steve Stevens

Steve Stevens shows some of his go-to licks and ideas while improvising over a backing track he made.

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