Six String Problem Solver

This course is for beginner to intermediate guitarists who may have encountered potholes in their roads of study. The aim is to discuss and devise exercises to help fix problems with basic theory, ear training, physical mechanics, and musical philosophy.

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If you're on your way to learning electric guitar but still have some questions, this course is for you. Eric focuses on practical tips that can help you learn songs by ear, get past roadblocks in your playing, and use body movement to enhance your feel for rhythm guitar.

Lessons in this Series:

Lesson 1

Eric Haugen Introduces Six-String Problem Solver

Eric Haugen discusses the goals of his "Six String Problem Solver" lesson series and what kind of material it covers.

Length: 5:45 Difficulty: 0.0 Free Sample Lesson
Lesson 2

How to Diagnose Your Guitar's Fitness

Learn to check your guitar's physical condition and solve simple problems.

Length: 13:26 Difficulty: 0.0 Member Only
Lesson 3

11 Essential Open Chords

Learn 11 chords that will be useful for playing most folk, rock, or pop songs.

Length: 14:02 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 4

How to Deal With Information Overload

Learn how to develop exercises that will make your practice musical and relaxing.

Length: 8:44 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 5

The Spectrum of Musicianship

Work on playing along with a track at your own pace and skill level.

Length: 6:50 Difficulty: 1.0 Member Only
Lesson 6

Electric Guitar Sound Settings

Learn how to work with a guitar's electronics and an overdrive pedal to get the sound you want.

Length: 12:01 Difficulty: 0.0 Member Only
Lesson 7

Tap Your Foot When You Play

Learn how moving your foot and body can help you to feel the rhythm when you play.

Length: 6:53 Difficulty: 1.0 Member Only
Lesson 8

Downbeats vs Upbeats

Learn how to use down and up beats with your strumming motion to help you play rhythm more smoothly.

Length: 6:06 Difficulty: 1.0 Member Only
Lesson 9

One Strum Pattern to Rule Them All

Learn and practice a common strumming pattern that you can use in a broad range of styles.

Length: 7:02 Difficulty: 1.0 Member Only
Lesson 10

How to Follow a Simple Chart

Learn how to interpret a basic chart like one you would download from the internet using your ear and some basic music theory.

Length: 9:33 Difficulty: 1.0 Member Only
Lesson 11

Don't Fear Improvisation

Do Not Fear Improvisation: There is No Treasure to be Found! In this lesson Eric shows how he generates improv ideas and gives some tips on habits to avoid as well.

Length: 8:12 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 12

You Don’t Need a Metronome, Just Don’t Rush

If you don't have a metronome, you can train yourself not to rush your exercises by slowing them down each time you play.

Length: 6:13 Difficulty: 1.0 Member Only
Lesson 13

Turning on the Musicality

Eric shows some examples of keeping your practice musical so that it is more engaging and relevant to playing songs.

Length: 9:25 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 14

How to Make Your Own Strumming Pattern

Eric walks you through a simple process for developing a strumming pattern around a song you are learning.

Length: 7:08 Difficulty: 0.5 Member Only
Lesson 15

What is Your Outlet or Goal?

Sometimes it helps to have something you are working toward in your playing to provide incentive. In this lesson, Eric discusses some activities you might be interested in to take your playing further.

Length: 4:44 Difficulty: 0.0 Member Only
Lesson 16

Stock Blues Licks are OK

It's okay to use stock blues licks! In this lesson Eric shows how some simple blues licks can be used as a starting point to generate lots of improvisation ideas.

Length: 10:59 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 17

Use Your Wrist, Not Your Elbow

Eric shows you how to loosen up and flex your wrist when you play, and gives you an exercise to help you practice this form.

Length: 7:04 Difficulty: 0.0 Member Only
Lesson 18

Don't Pick Too Far Into the Strings

Eric shows you good picking depth technique, talks about why it matters, and gives you an exercise to practice picking at a good depth.

Length: 6:10 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 19

Alternate Picking Workout

Eric gives you a musical exercise to practice your alternate picking technique.

Length: 8:19 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 20

Fretting Hand Thumb Position

Eric shows you good thumb placement for your fretting hand and then gives you an exercise to practice supporting with your thumb.

Length: 9:08 Difficulty: 0.5 Member Only
Lesson 21

Fretting Hand Pinky Problems

Eric shows you an exercise that is great for working with the often-ignored pinky finger.

Length: 7:49 Difficulty: 1.0 Member Only
Lesson 22

Basic Finger Picking Position

Eric talks about beginning finger picking techniques and gives you an exersize to help you practice some Travis style finger picking.

Length: 10:15 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 23

Dynamic Control

Eric discusses how good dynamic control comes from proper picking hand technique and shows you an exercise to practice your playing dynamics.

Length: 8:19 Difficulty: 0.5 Member Only
Lesson 24

Be Careful of Your Low E String

Eric shows you some chords where the low E can be problematic, and gives you an exercise to help work on avoiding the E when you need to.

Length: 6:44 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 25

Basic Barre Chord Review

Eric goes over the four basic barre chords and shows you an exercise to practice them.

Length: 8:19 Difficulty: 0.5 Member Only
Lesson 26

Slash Chords Explained

Eric discusses what it means when you see a "slash chord" in a chart or chord sheet and how to find and play these special, transitional styles of chords.

Length: 10:15 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 27

The Importance of the 12 Bar Blues

Eric talks about what the 12 bar blues is and why it is so fundamental to modern music and important in a jam setting.

Length: 9:19 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 28

The Importance of the 1, 4, and 5

Length: 7:52 Difficulty: 0.5 Member Only
Lesson 29

How to Hear the Key of a Song

Walks you through listening to a song and finding the key, or tonal center, of the song with your ears and your low E string.

Length: 4:53 Difficulty: 0.5 Member Only
Lesson 30

Where to Start With Transcription

Eric talks about some of the most common chord changes and cadences and shows you an example of finding those changes in a song so you can play along.

Length: 10:29 Difficulty: 1.0 Member Only
Lesson 31

The Difference Between Major, Minor and 7th Chords

Eric talks about how major, minor, and 7th Chords relate to each other and how to listen for them in a song.

Length: 6:36 Difficulty: 1.0 Member Only
Lesson 32

The Three Parent Scales: Major, Minor, Blues

Eric talks about how the three parent scales are related, why they are important, and how to recognize when each should be used.

Length: 11:32 Difficulty: 1.0 Member Only
Lesson 33

Common Time Signatures and Their Personalities

Eric discusses some common time signatures, what they mean with regards to music theory, and what they feel like to hear and play.

Length: 9:54 Difficulty: 0.5 Member Only
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