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Introductory Guitar Part 1 (Guitar Lesson)

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Brendan Burns

Introductory Guitar Part 1

In his first beginning guitar lesson, Brendan draws on his vast teaching experience and imparts some of the basic things every guitar player should know. As in all the lessons in this series, Brendan will give you three things to work on with each lesson: Chords, Melody, and Rhythm.

Taught by Brendan Burns in Introductory Guitar seriesLength: 22:18Difficulty: 0.0 of 5

Video Subtitles / Captions

Member Comments about this Lesson

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

imabbbimabbb replied on July 31st, 2018

I'm here because I have a grip on the basics but I can't hold a beat to save my life. There are other courses to help you learn how to hold a pick and such, but this one jumps right into what I need to practice the most right now.

genydedgenyded replied on March 9th, 2018

A few pointing and vocal refs to guitar in the intro, but guitar is not i n frame. Also just jumping right in with no pick holding or size instruction, how to 'shape' for chords, and other basic stuff before ever attempting to even strum.

Gerald57Gerald57 replied on January 4th, 2018

Hi I know we use different Gauge wires for guitars. Could you please tell me what size of guitar strings to use as a beginner.

Steven21Steven21 replied on December 13th, 2017

Wow, the first instructor to bring up "trim your nails"!! YES!! And "try this different ways", "see what works best for you", and not having you nail your left thumb in place on the back of the guitar neck. Easy to stick with, THANKS.

Austin34Austin34 replied on August 30th, 2017

Excellent start Brendan, thanks. A little awkward the very first try...but the progression of the lesson had me feeling quite proud of my work lol...

chezzdenchezzden replied on August 21st, 2017

I thought the first beginner lesson out cover how to tune the guitar. :)

Bradley.ConwayBradley.Conway replied on August 22nd, 2017

Hello [email protected]! The lessons will typically start with an introduction where the teacher will layout his/her expectations and ultimate goals for the course, and while the majority of the Phase 1 Beginners Lesson will get into the basics such as holding and tuning your guitar, this particular lesson simply isn't laid-out that way. Here is a direct link to a list of several lessons regarding tuning your guitar: Here is another link that will take you directly to our guitar tuner located under "Tools" on your JamPlay Welcome Page: I hope this helps! Cheers!

KevericksKevericks replied on July 20th, 2017

Hi, Could you tell me what amp you are using. I have a variety of VST amp sims and would like to get your sound, where possible, when I play along with you.

Jason.MounceJason.Mounce replied on July 20th, 2017

In the studio we utilize an Avid Eleven Rack. We typically build our own patches based on it's modeling in studio. I can't tell you exactly what's going on with this one, but it's a fairly clean channel likely on something like a Marshall amp. I would choose something like that from your modeling sims, then dial in the EQ to suit your needs from there. I don't hear much reverb and there's no delay on this, so it's a pretty straight forward clean tone.

KevericksKevericks replied on July 21st, 2017

Thank you. I have a Marshall JCM800 sim so i'll give it a try.

bradcalebbradcaleb replied on June 13th, 2017

A great start to the Electric guitar

slefoll7slefoll7 replied on February 7th, 2017

I have question on the A minor chord. When strumming with a strum pattern, how do you skip the E string? I am having some problems with that because as I am going through the chords, I establish a strum pattern and am finding it difficult to skip that string while playing. Thank You! Christy

jillnissjillniss replied on August 19th, 2016

Excellent! I love this approach. I have been playing 17 months and this is the basic approach my instructor took on the first lesson (minus the rhythmic part, which I wish he had covered). I love the last few minutes of the chords section where you talk about experimenting with pivot points, also something I wish I had done early on.

rylan1234rylan1234 replied on January 15th, 2016

these lessons are awesome!

bravejoybravejoy replied on January 1st, 2016

Very good tips! thanks a lot. For instance the distance between the fretboard and fingers!

telmoroquetelmoroque replied on June 13th, 2015

I love the concept of the course establishing a 5 week schedule! I think it ill help a lot to establish practice goals. Let's see how it goes. See you in 5 weeks!

TailenTailen replied on February 10th, 2015

Brendan I find that on the Emajor the G sounds kind of clunky. If I go to the second fret it sounds fine, only on the first fret it sounds clunky.

satkoffm2satkoffm2 replied on January 3rd, 2015

Hi. Thanks for the beginners lesson. I will be 61 and just starting but have some rhythm as I played the drums early in my life. Question, about how many minutes a day is a good barometer for me to practice before moving on?

kingsrkingsr replied on August 13th, 2014

This was an enjoyable intro to guitar. Looking forward to more.

swilli66swilli66 replied on August 3rd, 2014

When I download the pdf version of the supplemental material for Lesson #1, I instead am getting Lesson #2. minor tech issue aside, I just started your series and am going to practice Lesson #1 this week. Does everyone have extra-slow learner muscle memory or is just me?

BaYan56BaYan56 replied on October 25th, 2014

Me too !

awhalaawhala replied on July 26th, 2014

In striking chords which require less than all strings, I am not sure how to approach these. To miss a string, especially at the end of a stroke, is more of a challenge than finding chords with my left hand and I am afraid I may be enforcing bad habits early on by not addressing this correctly. Do you have any suggestions?

BrenRiBrenRi replied on July 23rd, 2014

Brendan, you put the guitar on your R leg, as I used to, now I've got in the habit of putting guitar on my L leg. Is that ok, I'm R handed. thanks, Brendan (we have the same name)

richbtrichbt replied on July 13th, 2014

Brendan Great job here. Looking forward to completing this series soon and moving on to more of your lessons. Thanks Rich

torikoostorikoos replied on July 9th, 2014

Perhaps a little bit of info on the holding of the pick is needed. I'm not sure if I'm holding mine to lighty, of the tightly, sometimes I keep launching my pick, other times I seem to cramp…

clara1989clara1989 replied on June 22nd, 2014

I'm told you should rest the guitar on the left leg but I notice many if not all rest it on their right leg. What is correct or does it matter?

okjmokjm replied on June 7th, 2014

Hi! Enjoyed this lesson, but struggling with the melodic exercise - my finger's first joints don't seem to bend much at all, especially my 2nd and ring fingers. Any help for that?

tarocattarocat replied on May 1st, 2014

Oh yeah, I like your style and approach to teaching, Brendan. I'm working on intermediate level guitar a little bit but I always find something to work on in the beginning series as well. I like your lessons a lot. Tony (Jampay student in Thailand)

thesnowdogthesnowdog replied on April 30th, 2014

Great to see! I'd always imagined that Brendan would offer an interesting beginner series.

Introductory Guitar

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

The basics of the basics. Join Brendan for his 5 part series designed to get you started down the road of playing guitar!

Lesson 1

Introductory Guitar Part 1

In his first beginning guitar lesson, Brendan draws on his vast teaching experience and imparts some of the basic things every guitar player should know. As in all the lessons in this series, Brendan...

Length: 22:18 Difficulty: 0.0 Members Only
Lesson 2

Introductory Guitar Part 2

Brendan continues his introductory series for guitar, adding more chords, melodic exercises and rhythmic exercises to further you in your playing ability!

Length: 10:45 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 3

Introductory Guitar Part 3

Brendan continues his Introductory Guitar series with three new chords, a challenging melodic exercise, and a rhythm exercise.

Length: 16:21 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 4

Introductory Guitar Part 4

In week number 4, Brendan shows you his chord transition strategy and introduces the major scale!

Length: 16:34 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 5

Introductory Guitar Part 5

In the final lesson of this series, Brendan sends you on your way with some great tools: strumming chords and playing the minor pentatonic scale!

Length: 14:25 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only

About Brendan Burns View Full Biography Brendan has been passionate about music since childhood. He began his studies on trumpet, in elementary school, and then moved to guitar as a teenager. He holds a Bachelor's Degree from Berklee College of Music, and has studied with Norm Zocher, Joe Stump, Bret Willmott, Bob Pilkington, Jay Weik, Tim Miller, & Charlie Banacos.

While at Berklee, Brendan was a member of the Music Mentoring Program, teaching private lessons to gifted high school students. He is currently teaches, and is chair of the guitar department at Brookline Music School. Brendan also teaches guitar for Tune Foolery & privately at his home in Cambridge, MA.

Along with educating, Brendan plays out often as a Solo Guitarist, performing standards, pop, and classical repertoire. He has recorded and played with the chamber-fusion band Ra Quintent, and as well as Vessela Stoyanova's Eastern Stories Under Western Skies Project. Brendan also performs as a leader, director and sideman for various Boston art-rock projects, and is former member of MIT's Gamelan Galak Tika.

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