Practice and Discipline (Guitar Lesson)

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David MacKenzie

Practice and Discipline

In this short lesson David talks about practice, discipline, and how you should apply yourself when learning and mastering the guitar.

Taught by David MacKenzie in Basic Electric Guitar seriesLength: 6:00Difficulty: 0.5 of 5

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Supplemental Learning Material



Member Comments about this Lesson

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

iduncanwiduncanw replied

Thanks David, that was really good to listen too. I first picked up a guitar over 20 years ago, but it sat collecting dust for about 16 years. I took it out when my 4yr old found it and asked what it was. Unfortunately my amp power switch had broken so I couldn't show him with any volume, but it made me think about picking it up again. I've tried a couple of times the past few years, but finally subscribed here and I'm getting a one-on-one lesson once a week so really hoping to make some inroads into my guitar playing. This talk was quite inspiring, so thank you.

shiredboundshiredbound replied

Great lesson from Dave. Should be a motivational speaker. You need little pushes like that, I'm 60 years old, been fooling around with guitar for years, Dave and all the teacher are excellent, wish I had access to lessons like this growing up, thanks.

jammy5150jammy5150 replied

totally true spot on advise

CavanaughCavanaugh replied

Great little lesson on motivation. I am very much a beginner. Never heard of any of the musicians you mentioned, except for Chicago. I bought the album (vinyl) of Chicago III new in the store.

Dmajor1991Dmajor1991 replied

Chicago...Terry Kath...all time favorite !

Jago1959Jago1959 replied

Great little lesson to keep me on track and motivated,

waggs68waggs68 replied

Great advice...

waggs68waggs68 replied

Great advice...

MTMalsMTMals replied

Thanks Dave.

blindndeadblindndead replied

Cool Little pep talk Dave. Love what I am learning from your lessons.. Thanks!!

sunkilrsunkilr replied

Should I breeze through lessons, and then comeback and practice the excercises in bundle or Should I master a lesson before moving on to the next i.e. by mastering I mean being able to play the excercises at the determined bpm. What do you recommend?

Marc_XMarc_X replied

I know its tempting but don't do it. Take your time. I had no idea E sustained chord is such a beauty. David just brings it so clearly to us. Practice is the key to mastering something and we won't accomplish our goals by side stepping or momentarily visiting lessons. Keep at it. Six months from now we'll amaze people with out skills in guitar. Rock on!

rydawg723rydawg723 replied

Great stuff David. I can honestly say that I have fallen off the of horse when from time to time trying to learn how to play. Everyone has hardships that things that take priority, but its understanding what is important and keeping yourself accountable that makes you more successful every day. I keep a binder with a notebook to track all of the lessons that I watch and take notes as to what I need to learn, what I need to work on, and what I may have missed. Not only does it show my progess, but it also keeps me involved when my hands aren't around my guitar. Its not always easy to keep at something like a lick or a rift that your fighting hard to learn, but to stay active and keep learning motivates me to find out why im having such a hard time and how can i get better.

skariskyskarisky replied

Chicago And Dream Theater, ROCK ON DAVID This Is Very Helpful ;D

chazziechazzie replied

Tip of the hat = )

skyhunterdskyhunterd replied

Truly inspiring words and a good summary of what was missing in my approach towards the guitar for the past 15 years. Now I enjoy the journey every day. Thanks a whole lot Dave!

treierstreiers replied

Thanks for those words! I have been playing guitar for many years, but just self taught with stuff put together here and there. Great to have theese building blocks, one by one and suddenly it clicks. And also great with a little motiational speech like this! :=) Keep up the good work jamplay!

jeremyprice88jeremyprice88 replied

thanks dave, very good little motivational speech! LETS MELT SOME FACES! haha

1twen11twen1 replied

Nice speech, thats one to tell the grandkids in years to come.

paintedcrowpaintedcrow replied

The "frustration factor" i know all too well. there are many days i feel i will never get this. i have been playing for about 2 years and i am still struggling with the basics. its like the more i learn the less i understand... it seems like everyone i know personally who plays is progressing so much faster than i am. my question is to david and everyone else is, do you think some people just aren't cut out to play? or do you think anyone can learn with time? and as far as my goal... i want to learn to put my feelings into the guitar, i want to make it speak for me the way a painter does with brush and canvas, my loves, fears, angers, etc. am i far off the mark?

Elemeno PElemeno P replied

Just a quick thanks and as I read somewhere else....this SHOULD be required viewing for all beginners.

palicopalico replied

Good Lesson. I've been playing guitar for years, after a reviewing a couple of the free stuff on Jamplay I joined to learn some new tips and styles (I never been able to sweep worth a lick!). I started the basic lessons just because the it seemed best to start at the beginning, not thinking these would teach me much. Well your third lesson I learned some chords I had never seen before! I look forward to actually practicing again, instead of just noodling around to keep muscles in shape.

gekisai29gekisai29 replied

just what i needed after 2 months of trying to learn to play

tazdevil1213tazdevil1213 replied

David: I've been playing guitar for about 30 years also. The difference between you and me is that I put it down to fight a war, get a college education, and establish a career. Last December, I convinced my wife to let me get an acoustic guitar for Christmas, and It's been on since. I've purchased two more guitars, effect pedals, and recording equipment. I've also joined a local band. The one thing that has eluded me is soloing. I've always been the rhythm guitarist in bands, so now I've challenged myself to step into the limelight. So far your lessons are great. I'm continuing your series and believe that your experience is going to help me achieve my goal. I don't believe that I'll ever be Joe Satriani, but I'll keep trying. Thanks.

eyeofsauroneyeofsauron replied

Very good lesson and one everyone should watch. I've been playing guitar for a year now and joined Jamplay as soon as I bought my first guitar. I never dreamed I would make as much progress. But I made a determined effort to remain disciplined and not move too fast through lessons until I had a reasonable understanding of the lesson I've just watched at each stage.

evilmpevilmp replied

After going through these lessons I have found something that helped me expand on what you taught in the lessons. What do you think about a book called the Guitar Grimoire?

dokterdondokterdon replied

These lessons are great. I started playing guitar in 1981 and I still learn things from these beginner lessons. It's like going back and finding things I missed along the way. Your teaching method is great and down to earth. Your advice in this lesson says it all. Thanks for these lessons. I've learned so much since joining with Jamplay.

david.mackenziedavid.mackenzie replied

your most welcome, and thank you!!!

patsendpatsend replied

Like we say in Europe: Rome ne s'est pas faite en en un jour. Rome was not built in one day. Patience, patience, it's the only way to get it. Thanks to remember it to the new generations.

YucatanEdYucatanEd replied

Cool man. So glad to hear Yngwie mentioned. First time I heard Evil Eye on Rising Force I was totally blown away. Completely agree about discipline. I took 8 months going thru Mark Lincolns acoustic series, so I am totally motivated but I understand the importance of patience. Thanks DMac!

kamihamsterkamihamster replied

Awesome lesson DMac really puts your focus right where it needs to be dedication and hard work. Another reason why I've fallen in love with Jamplay everyone has the right idea :D

tesla strike 808tesla strike 808 replied

Wow,great words to hear.i suggest this lesson is put in also at the very start,people need to hear this right away,so they know not to be in a hurry,and then get frustrated and quit.if it was easy,everyone would be playing and it wouldnt be anything special.

bulkley15bulkley15 replied

Inspirational, I always want everything right now, and the guitar is not something where that approach is going to be beneficial. I want my playing to sound good not messy. Thanks for the insight.

dearlpittsdearlpitts replied

words to learn by

kevinmckevinmc replied

Very true! I have come back to the guitar after many years "off" and the great thing is in the month or so i been back i found all the things i used to be able to do coming back to me just like "riding a bike" you dont really forget it (sure my fingers didnt go where i wanted a first.. but practice and am a lot better) I found setting your self targets and goals is good motivation, nothing feels better than managing to finally play at the right speed and with no mistakes a piece you love. I know i wont be John Pretrucci over night, but... it takes little steps to climb a ladder and my little goals keep me motivated :)

diljotdiljot replied

he david do u know how to play the NEW DIVIDE by linkin park i'm in search of its cover The song is available at I will be very thankful to u

polk_a_dot_vpolk_a_dot_v replied

Wise words...part of what makes me a beginner at 41 is a lack of dicipline (and time)...I skipped ahead to this lesson....but it was well worth it back to work......

ge08ge08 replied

Very good lesson. I wouldn't have played on stage at my schools talent show if I didn't teach myself that a couple of months ago. You basically put my thinking into a good explanation.

genovalgenoval replied

Pettruci is absolutely amazing. Watch him play a solo and things you can't comprehend playing he just calmly flies through. How long has he been playing?

david.mackenziedavid.mackenzie replied

according to John's official website, he was born july 12th 1967, and started playing at age 12, which is at about 1979 i think? so about 30 years as of this year now. he also attended Berklee music college, where he meet 2 members of dream theater. its all history after that. sounds like he was very driven and would put in 6 hours of practise a day at times, and i think he just has a true gift to play. from his clinic i learned how he organized alot of different exercises and and forms an actual regime to learn new things, while going over other things he has learned guitarwise. he is a very diciplined individual, and is even into bodybuilding! i thought he looked bigger in some pics i saw recently. he was'nt that big when i met him 2-3 years ago. anyway thats what i know about him.

abstractvisionsabstractvisions replied

I 100% agree that there is a trend of "I want it now" mentality sweeping the nation remember, "patience is a virtue"

pinoyboy2829pinoyboy2829 replied

this video inspired me in so many ways. Thank you very much David

lennartklennartk replied

As I watch the lesson, I understand that learning to play the guitar is very comparable to learning karate. Getting a foundation, and building from that, also accepting that one can never learn it all. (I also need to use less force...but that's a different story) Thank you for the lesson, you teaching style is very motivating for me.

david.mackenziedavid.mackenzie replied

very true to everything you said. that puts you at a high level of understanding, and you wont frustrate yourself too much, yet you'll motivate yourself good enought to keep progressing!! good job!!

convalleysconvalleys replied

I remember an interview with Eddie Van Halem. He said "It's easy to play guitar like me...just lock yourself in your bedroom with your guitar for 8 hours a day for ten years!...that's what I did"...I guess what he is saying is practice and practice more, that's the answer. I'd give my right arm to play like him...but then I would have a bitch of a time playing! Practice is definately the answer!

confetticonfetti replied

Great lesson that has certainly taught me alot to get the best out of playing my guitar. I have to say the first thing I did when I bought my guitar was jump in and immedietly learn how to read tab, and learn play the riff to smoke on the water. Although it was satisfying for a while, I realised I wasn't improving on my guitar playing, and found myself just repeatedly playing this riff. Now though i'm going at a good constant pace making sure I learn and master each lesson that your fine self sets, or that Mark Brennan does! Kudos to you Dave!

CarolLBCarolLB replied

You're absolutely right; life is not about the destination. It's the journey. My journey into guitar playing keeps me sane after a very stressful day on the job. My destination is to play like Eric Clapton. I will never reach that goal, but you know what, I'm having a damn good time trying! Thanks for the inspiration.

laddladd replied

So true, so true. Think of all the things that you are good at. Most likely you took a process oriented approach to reach those objectives and did not focus on the end game. I think this is really key to mastering anything. Focus on the journey, not on the end point. When you look at a pie in the oven when it is half done, it is , well, half done. Doesn't look too good. But the finished product is great! Focus on the process, practice, be patient, it will all come together. /l

alshyalshy replied

listen to what you are saying dave and you right done all the lesson 's on phase one, results are amazing my wife now reconised things that we are doing, discipline is the key ive been tempted to jump lessons but you can get lost and take to much on board, going back to refresh phase 1 again then mayby phase 2 hopefully, the scales await again!!!!!!!!!great work DMc thanks

david.mackenziedavid.mackenzie replied

great job!!! just make sure to touch upon your basics(maybe as you warm up) as you move on to new territory on the guitar, as that will keep you fundamentals solid.!!! rock on!!!

nietonieto replied

I have been playing for three weeks and I'm amazed at the results .I think this is a really good program for beginners. you are a good instructor.

david.mackenziedavid.mackenzie replied

thank you! sorry it took me so long to reply! so many different places on this site, i sometimes get lost!!! lol!!! i am humbled by your compliment. i hope to be filming more soon! my other job has just been in the way.

sbryantsbryant replied

Dave: My job always gets in the way but I figured I am tired of that happening and being 45 years old and getting on with my life, I will learn guitar the way I envision even if I have to tone done other parts of my life (i.e., my job). Guitar and music make me happy, not my job. So thanks to JamPlay, I have a structure and the support to kick me in the a** when needed!!! Thanks.

kevinacekevinace replied

Glad to hear it! Yeah...D-Mack rules!

godstwingodstwin replied

Great sit down. I reaaaally needed this. I always tend to quit guitar for a long while after I get frustrated or cant get something (mainly because its far beyond my skill level).

inertialdinertiald replied

Dave, you are a great guitarist and an inspiration to us all. I've been playing for eight years and have been self-taught the entire way. My friends and family said I was good, but I want to be great, like you! So I came to JamPlay to try and refine my technique. I've been following your lessons from #1 so as not to miss anything. This lesson, I'm not going to put past 0%, so I always know to come back to it and listen again in those "hard times". Very thoughtful and wise words, and very motivational. Thank you so much for giving us your time and talent! You are my guitar hero, right up there with Yngwie, Vaughn, and Hammett.

laurenblaurenb replied

This was really worth watching. I started learning 'backwards' as I didn't have a guitar teacher and didn't know what steps I needed to take in order to improve and develop different skills. I bought a chord book and tab books of my favorite bands and just started learning songs. A couple of months of sore hands and frustration later, I could play some songs but I sounded like c**p and was ready to give up. I'm so glad I have JamPlay to teach me about scales, good practising methods etc. I now just have to work on my patience!!!

lenislenis replied

Great lesson, it really reminded me to keep my goals in mind and to put everything in perspective. Thank You !

rj surfsrj surfs replied

Awesome words of wisdom Dave! You guys are the best instructors I've seen, period... lessons like this one make it very apparent how much you love guitar and the dedication you have to teaching your pupils.

dutchpetedutchpete replied

Hi Dave (and all you other guys) After a long search on the net for online guitarlessons i "googled" the The way you build up these lesson!!!!! Great!!!! Even for me..... I began 3 weeks ago playing (sort of) guitar so i'm totally new and English is not my native language (i'm Dutch, so sorry if my English is not that good) but until now i understand the lessons completly. And this lesson is a great one to keep on going, not that i need that after only three weeks but i think that if there's a time that thing not go the way i want i will keep comming back to this lesson!! Thx David!!!

jboothjbooth replied

Your English is very good, don't worry about that! So glad the site and the lessons are helping you =)

bluedogbluedog replied

right in hit the nail on the head!!!

steveoraclesteveoracle replied

Great lesson Dave, fantastic motivation.

david.mackenziedavid.mackenzie replied

thats really too bad is'nt it? what would've happened if Hendrix, Clapton, Van Halen, Vai, or BB KIng would've just given up after a week???? the world would not be as interesting musically i think!!!

mrfridaymrfriday replied

what you say blows my mind. I could not imagine if those greats quit after a week but could you imagine if they had

david.mackenziedavid.mackenzie replied

thank you for the kind words, and compliments! the motivation probably comes from being a football coach roughly a decade ago!! :O lol!!!

harryharry replied

Dave, I REALLY enjoyed your lesson set. You are a great motivator!! Hope to see more from you. Harry

mav67mav67 replied

Wise words man, if only everyone would watch this and pay attention. Many people have been playing for less time than me, yet are on like lesson 10 in a set. Then you see them asking questions or are having problems that could have been eliminated if only they had taken their time and really learned what was being taught. Be assured that I have heard you and will in the future as well as now always bear that in mind. Once again, CUDOS to you.

david.mackenziedavid.mackenzie replied

well from me anyway, i say thank you! i wont step on brads toes and try to speak for him, even though he and i know and respect each other. i was just mentioning this week what a knowledgable instructor he is. he really understands theory WAY MORE than i do and definitely can communicate what needs to be said! he and i played in a band together for awhile, and it was great to play guitar along side of him! extremely competent player live!! dont worry, if your son is meant to play, he'll come around. 16 is a tough age, and they usually dont listen to parents well!!! when he asks though, just gently teach him, and dont overdo, he will probably start hanging around more to learn. keep him wanting more!!! hee, hee!!!

bat21bat21 replied

After I joined, my son decided to start playing as well. He has been going to a music teacher because he thought internet teaching was "Crap". He doesn't understand why I spend 2-3 hours practicing and his teacher told him he would be playing lead in 2-3 months. Now he is flustered. and I play well enough to satisfy myself and play with my brother. I have tried to explain to him, that it doesn't happen over night. Try telling a 16 year old to be patient. I couldn't agree more on the "No Promises" comment. That is why I have a membership and enjoy the lessons. I have went threw more lesson than I should have. But just watching them is enjoyment and I can go back and relearn something. Thats why I love it here. Brad and Dave have been great inspiration to me and I look forward to more from them. You two have a great way of teaching. You guys have great ziel when you teach and present the material in a well rounded manner. Brad is enthusiastic when he teaches and he gets you involved even though your not there. And every time you guys present the lessons, the first thing you say is "Take your time and master it". Never once saying you will earn it fast.

david.mackenziedavid.mackenzie replied

totally millaTK!!! usually if it sounds too good to be true? it is too good to be true! i have learned that one the hard way more than once. i always get the best results out of anything i do by concentrating, educating myself, and applying what i learn. thats it!!! you gotta put in the work! i started playing keyboards in our metal band, and boy was that hard! but i would spend the time to figure out how to play better and figure out chord voicings and all that, and now i can do 3 finger arrpegios using both hands with octaves, and simple stuff. i am thinking of finding a piano teacher to help me improve.

millaTKmillaTK replied

Gosh, I'm going to write this down... you really summarised it perfectly. I've been having a sort of flaming forum discussion with a piano student recently.. he was stating that after 1 year, he considered himself "intermediate", and in a year or so he expects to be advanced. I was just laughing (more or less) at him, trying to make him understand that he'll just be a beginner who plays difficult pieces... and that that is *not* being an advanced player. And that he'll sooner or later suffer from deep frustration. (Pianists are boring and always too concerned about being rated as advanced!) I guess it's the same with guitarists. Most people just want to do too much in too little time, accepting sloppy playing, eneven sounds, lack of precision... But there's no magic trick, you have to master your level before moving, and I guess it's not this way only with music. The secret I think it's just enjoying and playing at your level, while improving, always trying to achieve musical quality, otherwise you're just plucking the strings of a difficult piece, not playing it :) BTW: this is exactly what brought me to subscribe to JamPlay: there is NO HYPE, nobody here promises you some magical trick, nobody asks "do you want to play guitar like a PRO????", nobody claims to have the secret for playing PRO in three hours... You see, I'm an internet skeptical, or better: I'm an internet pro, that's why I'm skeptical, and when I see those pages and pages of hype that you can so easily find if you look for music courses online, all smokey and promising you'll be playing exceptional music in a few hours, and leading to an *expensive* bulk of cash out of your credit card... I really can't believe that. While here, no hype, lots of good common sense, wonderful instructors, active community, full of helpful people... this is definitely the way to go! Great job guys!

robearlerobearle replied

I have 2 guitars the moment. My SG, and a Peavey Raptor Special strat copy. The only reason i have the Peavey, is that my 18 year old nephew bought it, found out he couldn't play like his guitar hero's inside a week, so he put it down and it gathered dust for several months before he decided to pass it on to me.

david.mackenziedavid.mackenzie replied

i would have to agree with you robearle! its a i want it now society, and nobody wants to earn it, or live thru it, learn it and be humble. i am not perfect, and i was probably doing that at one time or another too, but sheeeeesh!!!! thank you for your comments, i am humbled!

robearlerobearle replied

Great lesson, and a very important one. I wonder how many people pick up a guitar, learn 5 chords, then instead of doing anything with what they've learned, they want to move on on learn 5 more. They [U]learn[/U] everything and [U]master[/U] nothing. Great lesson David :)

Basic Electric Guitar

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

In his Phase 1 series, David MacKenzie will walk you through the basics of rock guitar.

About the GuitarLesson 1

About the Guitar

David discusses the parts of the guitar. He also gives you some basic techniques to get you started.

Length: 31:00 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Power ChordsLesson 2

Power Chords

In this lesson, David introduces basic power chords. Great fun for beginners!

Length: 10:12 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Basic Chord ProgressionsLesson 3

Basic Chord Progressions

David introduces some basic chords and chord progressions.

Length: 14:15 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Notes, Chords and ArpeggiosLesson 4

Notes, Chords and Arpeggios

David provides a brief explanation of what notes, chords, power chords, and arpeggios are.

Length: 8:12 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Speed and CoordinationLesson 5

Speed and Coordination

This lesson is all about increasing your speed and coordination. David demonstrates basic picking exercises.

Length: 14:12 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Chord ExercisesLesson 6

Chord Exercises

David MacKenzie presents a mysterious sounding chord exercise. This exerices is designed to improve right hand technique.

Length: 9:12 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Practice and DisciplineLesson 7

Practice and Discipline

In this short lesson David talks about practice, discipline, and how you should apply yourself when learning and mastering the guitar.

Length: 6:00 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Double StopsLesson 8

Double Stops

Double stops can bring new life to your rhythm and lead playing. David provides a short tutorial on what double stops are and how they can be used.

Length: 7:12 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
The Major ChordsLesson 9

The Major Chords

David covers the basic major chord shapes. Every guitarist must learn these basic chords.

Length: 18:29 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
The Minor ChordsLesson 10

The Minor Chords

David MacKenzie walks you through the basic minor chords. Expand your knowledge of chords with this fun-filled lesson.

Length: 8:15 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Major ScalesLesson 11

Major Scales

Major scales are an essential component of all styles of music. They can also be used as a great way to orient yourself with the fretboard.

Length: 32:12 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Major Scale JamLesson 12

Major Scale Jam

David MacKenzie explains how to practice the major scales along with a fun backing track.

Length: 11:10 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
The Minor ScalesLesson 13

The Minor Scales

David MacKenzie proceeds to an in-depth discussion of the minor scales.

Length: 15:36 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Minor Scale JamLesson 14

Minor Scale Jam

David MacKenzie shows you how to play the natural minor scale over a rockin' JamTrack.

Length: 6:12 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
One String ExerciseLesson 15

One String Exercise

David demonstrates an excellent one-string exercise in this lesson. This exercise will improve your dexterity and knowledge of the fretboard.

Length: 16:48 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Hammer-Ons and Pull-OffsLesson 16

Hammer-Ons and Pull-Offs

Hammer-ons and pull-offs are techniques that enable you to play with a smooth, legato feel.

Length: 8:27 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Basic BendsLesson 17

Basic Bends

David MacKenzie gives a crash course on bending in this lesson. Bends can add a lot of soul to your playing.

Length: 16:12 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Cool Rock LicksLesson 18

Cool Rock Licks

David MacKenzie teaches two rock licks inspired by Yngwie Malmsteen and Kirk Hammett of Metallica.

Length: 12:12 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Hammer-On ExerciseLesson 19

Hammer-On Exercise

David returns to the world of hammer-ons with a fun new exercise. This lesson includes a JamTrack.

Length: 13:56 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Return to Pull-OffsLesson 20

Return to Pull-Offs

David returns to the world of pull-offs with a new exercise. This lesson includes a backing track.

Length: 12:50 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Practicing BendsLesson 21

Practicing Bends

David MacKenzie returns to bending technique in this lesson. This lesson features a backing track that is designed for bending practice.

Length: 12:18 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Basic VibratoLesson 22

Basic Vibrato

Integrating vibrato into your guitar playing is a great way to add emotion and soul. David MacKenzie explains the basics of vibrato in this lesson.

Length: 9:12 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Pentatonic ScaleLesson 23

Pentatonic Scale

David MacKenzie introduces the pentatonic scale.

Length: 5:48 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Minor Pentatonic ScaleLesson 24

Minor Pentatonic Scale

David MacKenzie introduces the minor pentatonic scale in this lesson.

Length: 4:38 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Full Major ScaleLesson 25

Full Major Scale

David MacKenzie explains a two octave pattern of the major scale.

Length: 11:31 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Full Minor ScaleLesson 26

Full Minor Scale

David MacKenzie introduces a two octave natural minor scale pattern.

Length: 12:20 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Full Major Pentatonic ScaleLesson 27

Full Major Pentatonic Scale

David teaches a two octave pattern of the major pentatonic scale.

Length: 6:30 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Full Minor Pentatonic ScaleLesson 28

Full Minor Pentatonic Scale

David MacKenzie teaches a two octave version of the minor pentatonic scale.

Length: 9:20 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Cool LickLesson 29

Cool Lick

David MacKenzie teaches several licks based on common arpeggio patterns. This lesson also includes a backing track to jam with.

Length: 20:40 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Rhythm BasicsLesson 30

Rhythm Basics

David MacKenzie introduces some important rhythm basics in this lesson. This lesson also includes a backing track exercise.

Length: 14:55 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Power Chord VariationsLesson 31

Power Chord Variations

David MacKenzie explains various power chord voicings. By simply moving a finger or two, new power chords can be formed.

Length: 18:43 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Cool Lick ExerciseLesson 32

Cool Lick Exercise

David MacKenzie introduces some new amazing licks.

Length: 29:12 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Tapping ExerciseLesson 33

Tapping Exercise

David MacKenzie introduces the tapping technique and teaches a fun exercise. This lesson includes a backing track.

Length: 22:44 Difficulty: 2.5 FREE
Tapping Exercise #2Lesson 34

Tapping Exercise #2

David MacKenzie teaches another amazing tapping exercise.

Length: 13:07 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Tapping #3:  Adding Open StringsLesson 35

Tapping #3: Adding Open Strings

The third tapping lesson elaborates on the previous lesson by adding open strings.

Length: 12:59 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Tapping #4:  Diminished Lick Lesson 36

Tapping #4: Diminished Lick

The fourth lesson in Dave's tapping series deals with a monster diminished lick.

Length: 11:02 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Tapping #5Lesson 37

Tapping #5

In lesson five of his tapping mini-series, DMac provides backing tracks that you can tap over.

Length: 8:04 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Tremolo TechniqueLesson 38

Tremolo Technique

In lesson 38, DMac demonstrates some tremolo techniques to add to your repertoire.

Length: 13:54 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Tapping #6Lesson 39

Tapping #6

DMac returns to his tapping instruction with more advanced techniques.

Length: 19:54 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Chord StructuresLesson 40

Chord Structures

In lesson 40, DMac teaches you how to play various D chords all the way up the neck.

Length: 9:20 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
OctavesLesson 41


In lesson 41, David discusses the octave and its uses while playing.

Length: 17:09 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
David MacKenzie

About David MacKenzie View Full Biography Dave MacKenzie has been playing guitar for 30 of his 45 years on this earth. Starting back when he was 14 years old, Dave picked up the guitar and started to learn from his oldest brother, who had played some guitar as well. Dave was hooked, and couldn't learn fast enough! Everything from the Beatles, Chicago, Ted Nugent, The Eagles, you name it, Dave was trying to play it.

Then as with a lot of players out there, Eddie Van Halen came along and changed the way guitar was played! Dave has been influenced by anyone he has heard play guitar, literally! Always keeping an open mind and a humbleness about him has helped him to keep learning new things on, and about the guitar.

Dave has mostly played in top 40 rock, country, and pop bands. He is most recently playing guitar and keyboards in a 80's metal band called Open Fire. They have opened for Warrant, Firehouse, Winger, and LA Guns within the 3 and a half years they have been together, and are now jumping into original music.

Dave believes you should have internal motivation, and passion to play guitar, and most definitely, it should be fun!

As with his playing, Dave will find new ways to show you how to get the most out of your time learning guitar!

Lesson Information

Acoustic Guitar Lessons

Acoustic Guitar

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.

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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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Tyler Grant Tyler Grant

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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David Isaacs David Isaacs

JamPlay welcomes David Isaacs to our teacher roster. With his first lesson Dave explains his approach to playing guitar with...

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Nick Amodeo Nick Amodeo

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

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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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Erik Mongrain Erik Mongrain

Erik expounds on the many possibilities of open tunings and the new harmonics that you can use in them. He explains what...

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Jessica Baron Jessica Baron

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

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Electric Guitar Lesson Samples

Electric Guitar

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

Dan Sugarman Dan Sugarman

Dan Sugarman gives us an introduction and preview to his series - Sugarman's Shredding Revolution.

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Lita Ford Lita Ford

Lita Ford, guitarist for The Runaways, presents a fantastic and in depth series on what it was like and what it took professionally...

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Ian Argys Ian Argys

Lesson 6 is all about the major mode. As with the other lessons you'll be taking a look at the individual notes on the strings...

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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...

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James Malone James Malone

James explains how to tap arpeggios for extended musical reach.

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Mark Lettieri Mark Lettieri

We're still working in the double track universe in lesson 22. In this lesson Mark discusses taking a large chord and breaking...

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Glen Drover Glen Drover

Lesson 25 from Glen presents a detailed exercise that firmly builds up fret hand dexterity for both speed and accuracy.

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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.

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David Ellefson David Ellefson

David Ellefson, co-founding member of Megadeth, explains his overall approach to teaching and learning bass in this introductory...

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Dennis Hodges Dennis Hodges

Learn a variety of essential techniques commonly used in the metal genre, including palm muting, string slides, and chord...

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Join over 517118 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 126 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
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Mike H.

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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


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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.

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