Rhythm Strumming (Guitar Lesson)

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Matt Brown

Rhythm Strumming

This lesson covers right hand rhythm technique. Matt introduces syncopated strumming patterns.

Taught by Matt Brown in Reading Music and Rhythm seriesLength: 25:38Difficulty: 2.5 of 5
Chapter 1: (01:09) Introduction In past lessons, Matt has applied various rhythm exercises to the scales that he has discussed. In this lesson and future lessons, he will apply rhythm exercises to chord progressions. You will learn how the rhythm of each exercise should be counted. You will also learn why certain strumming patterns are applied to specific rhythms. This information is absolutely essential to playing rhythm guitar.

The strumming rhythms begin with quarter notes and progress to eighth note rhythms. Towards the end of the lesson, syncopated strumming rhythms involving eighth notes and quarter notes will be introduced. In future lessons, the chord progressions as well as the rhythms applied to them will become much more complicated. For example, triplet and sixteenth note rhythms will appear. Other time signatures will be used. Also, syncopated rhythms and polyrhythms will be practiced.
Chapter 2: (03:32) Chord Progression This lesson utilizes a basic diatonic progression in the key of C major. Each rhythm exercise is played with the same progression. The progression features the I, vi, IV, and V chords. Respectively, these chords are C, Em, F, and G. With the exception of F major, basic open voicings are used for these chords. A full six string barre chord is used for F major. If you have not yet mastered this chord, feel free to use the basic, four string version of F major.

Note: Fretboard diagrams to all chords discussed in the lesson can be found under the "Supplemental Content" tab. Two fingerings for G major are listed here. Spend significant time practicing both voicings. However, in the long run, use the fingering that is most comfortable for you.

Exercise 1

A. Notating Strumming Rhythms

Often, a strummed chord progression will be written above or directly on the staff using "rhythmic slash" notation. Within this notation system, standard note heads are replaced with rhythm slashes. Matt has notated the lesson exercises in this manner.

B. Exercise Guidelines

-Play all exercises with a metronome. Begin with slow tempos and gradually work your way into faster tempo ranges.

-Make sure the transition from chord to chord remains flawless.

-Right hand accuracy must remain constant at all times. Do not strum unnecessary strings!

C. Rhythm

The rhythm of this exercise is solely comprised of quarter notes. A chord is strummed on each beat. Make sure that each strum perfectly coincides the click of the metronome.

D. Strumming Pattern

The strong beats of each measure are always strummed using downward strums. Consequently, a pattern consisting solely of quarter notes should be played with all downward strums.

E. Practice Time

Play the exercise along with Matt at 02:15 in the lesson video. His metronome is set to 85 beats per minute. If you have a hard time keeping up, pause the lesson video. Set your metronome to a slower tempo and gradually work your way back up.
Chapter 3: (03:46) Eighth Note Strumming Exercise 2

A. Rhythm

This exercise is comprised solely of eighth notes. Count "1+2+3+4+" along with each measure.

B. Strumming Pattern

In the last scene, you learned that the downbeats within a strumming pattern are always played with a down strum. Now, upbeats (the +'s in the counting pattern) are added to the strumming figure. Upbeats in an eighth note pattern are typically played with upward strums. As a result, a steady alternating strumming pattern occurs throughout the progression.

A rhythm pattern consisting of nothing but eighth notes can also be played using all down strums. This strumming pattern creates a much more deliberate and aggressive sound that may or may not be desirable within the context of the song you are playing. Compare the sound of both strumming patterns as Matt demonstrates them in the lesson video at 01:10.

C. Practice Time

Play the exercise using alternate picking at 02:10 in the lesson video. Matt's metronome is set to 85 beats per minute. Repeat the exercise using all downstrokes at 02:50.
Chapter 4: (02:23) Exercise A. Rhythm

This exercise combines eighth notes and quarter notes. The appropriate counting pattern is listed below the exercise in "Supplemental Content." Count this rhythm out loud as you play through the exercise.

B. Strumming Pattern

Refer to the strumming guidelines discussed under the past scenes. The downbeats are played with down strums. The upbeats or "+" beats are played with upward strums.

C. Practice Time

Play the exercise along with Matt at 01:28 in the lesson video. His metronome is set to 85 beats per minute.
Chapter 5: (04:23) Syncopation Exercise 4

A. Rhythm

This exercise features some light syncopation. Remember that syncopation is defined as a shift in rhythmic accents in which a beat that is normally weak becomes stressed.

Each measure of the exercise is comprised solely of eighth notes. The fourth and fifth eighth notes are tied together. Consequently, the chord is held during the fifth eighth note but not strummed.

B. Strumming Pattern

Use an alternating strumming pattern beginning with a downstroke. For the tied chord, simply miss the strings with your strum. Many guitarists refer to this technique as a "ghost strum." The ghost strum allows you to play the proper rhythm while keeping the right hand motion fluid.

C. Practice Time

Play the exercise at 02:00 in the lesson video. The metronome is once again set to 85 beats per minute.

Exercise 5

A. Rhythm

This exercise also features some light syncopation. A quarter note occurs on the "+" of 1. This chord is held over to the downbeat of 2. Four eighth notes close the measure.

B. Strumming Pattern

Use an alternating strumming pattern beginning with a downstroke. Use a ghost strum on the downbeat of 2. Continue with the alternate picking pattern for the rest of the measure.

C. Practice Time

Play the exercise with Matt at 03:48. The metronome is once again set to 85 beats per minute.
Chapter 6: (10:19) Exercise The final three exercises are heavily syncopated. Whenever you encounter a strange, syncopated measure in a piece of music, take out a pencil and write in the appropriate counting rhythm. This will help you play the rhythm correctly when the measure is encountered in a practice session or a performance. Follow along closely as Matt breaks down the strumming rhythm for Exercise 6 in the lesson video.

Exercise 6

A. Rhythm

This exercise begins with an eighth note rest. Remember not to ignore rests. Silence is often a very important component of music. Lightly mute the strings with the right hand on the downbeat of 1.

The eighth note, quarter note, eighth note sandwich that occurred in the previous exercise now occurs at the end of the measure. The quarter note lands on the "+" beat of 3. It is held over to the downbeat of 4.

B. Strumming Pattern

When a rhythm is this heavily syncopated, ghost strumming can become hard to keep track of. If you do not find it helpful in this exercise, do not use it. Instead, simply follow the strumming guidelines listed under scenes 2 and 3. When a chord is played on a downbeat, use a down strum. Use up strums for chords that occur on weak beats.

C. Practice Time

Play the exercise with Matt at 03:51. The metronome is once again set to 85 beats per minute.

Exercise 7

A. Rhythm

Exercise 7 also begins with an eighth note rest. A quarter note occurs on the "+" of 1. This chord is held over to the downbeat of 2.

The eighth note, quarter note, eighth note sandwich also occurs at the end of each measure in Exercise 7. The quarter note lands on the "+" beat of 3. It is held over to the downbeat of 4.

B. Strumming Pattern

Follow the strumming guidelines listed under scenes 2 and 3. When a chord is played on a downbeat, use a down strum. Use up strums for chords that occur on weak beats. The majority of the strums occur on the weak beats.

C. Practice Time

Count the rhythm of the exercise out loud several times before playing it on guitar. When you feel ready, play the exercise with Matt at 06:04.

Exercise 8

A. Rhythm

If you have mastered the first seven exercises, Exercise 8 should pose no new challenges. Do not ignore the rest that occurs at the beginning of the measure. Also, remember not to strum during the tied note that occurs on the downbeat of 3.

Take a look at the counting syllables for this exercise. Notice how Matt writes tied notes in parenthesis. This indicates that the chord is counted but not strummed.

B. Strumming Pattern

Follow the strumming guidelines listed under scenes 2 and 3. When a chord is played on a downbeat, use a down strum. Use up strums for chords that occur on weak beats. The majority of the strums occur on the weak beats. The only down strum occurs on the downbeat of 2.

C. Practice Time

Play the exercise with Matt at 08:47.

Preview of Next Lesson

In lesson 19, Matt explains a new time signature referred to as "cut time." A duet arrangement of "Down by the Riverside" is used to practice reading skills in this time signature.

Preview of Next Strumming Lesson

In future lessons, Matt will continue to discuss various strumming rhythms. The next time this topic is covered, he will introduce patterns involving triplet rhythms. Triplet figures involving syncopation will be explained as well.

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.

LokiNinjaLokiNinja replied

Hi Matt, I am slightly confused. It sounds like you said that E is the 6th in the key of C major. Wouldn't that be A though. Am I missing something?

Chris.LiepeChris.Liepe replied

Good catch! In Scene 2, Matt does mis-speak and call the Em chord the "6" Em in the key of C would actually be a minor 3 chord.

CvillemaniaCvillemania replied

Can not watch the lesson it keeps stopping.

keplerkepler replied

great stuff

floudermanflouderman replied

great lesson. really helped me, thanks!

mattbrownmattbrown replied

No problem! Glad it helped you out!

telboytelboy replied

Thanks Matt. Yep, I get it. Last point well made. Love the work ethic to this series of lectures.....And the variety is so well paced. I'm learning so much....joyously! It's me that's been deaf!!!!

telboytelboy replied

Oophs...apologies Matt, I have gone and blinded Evelyn. She is as you probably know profoundly deaf. And what an ambassador for music...she hears the sound of silence.

mattbrownmattbrown replied

Yo! I'm definitely familiar with her...She first popped up on my radar due to her work with the late great Michael Kamen. I haven't seen the Ted special, but I'll add it to my never-ending list of things to check out. On the ghost strumming, be very cautious about eliminating ghost strumming from your playing. "Ghosting" is extremely helpful when it comes to playing totally in the pocket. It helps you "frame" the rhythm...Otherwise, when you begin to learn more complex and syncopated rhythms, your rhythms may be milliseconds off, which the listener will definitely perceive on some level...It's also extremely important to subdivide rhythms in your head and with your body when playing at very slow tempos...Try playing the last two exercises at 40-50 bpm with a metronome. Try it with ghost strumming and without...I think you'll see what I'm getting at...Thanks for the comments!

telboytelboy replied

Thanks Matt. V interesting. It's got to yhe point where I don't ghost strum....but feel the pause. But agree re the checking. Apropso of this....there is a wonderful development of the point you made by the blind percussionist Evelyn Glennie on the TED site. Cheers.

telboytelboy replied

As the last 3 exercises got more complex it messed with my head. So I just turned away from the monitor and listened to the beat of the rhythm. I found this (for me) to be the most effective way of picking it up...as long as I took account of the ghost strum on the opening silent 8th. What you think Matt?

mattbrownmattbrown replied

The five senses and the way that they work together are pretty interesting to say the least. Personally, if I close my eyes and eliminate the sense of sight, I'm able to hear things better...It's not a drastic difference. I would almost go so far as to say the difference isn't even noticeable on a surface level. It's kind of a subconscious thing. When I'm transcribing lessons here on JamPlay, I don't watch the videos. At this point, I find that my eyes deceive me more often than they help me. That wasn't always the case though...When I was much younger and didn't know so much musical vocabulary, it would probably would have been easier to have a visual reference.

mattbrownmattbrown replied

However, I should mention that once you can play these rhythms, go back to the notation and make sure that you understand exactly how what you are hearing / playing corresponds to the standard notation. These rhythms are common and will pop up again and again as you continue to play, learn songs, etc.

rbradyrbrady replied

Hi, Matt: Thanks for always making a complete "About this lesson" tab! It helps a lot or is at least nice to have.

mattbrownmattbrown replied

You're welcome! I actually quit doing those in 2008-2009 though, so you probably won't see them for anything since then unfortunately. I did them for my own lessons and the other instructors' lessons too. We just got to a point as a company where I didn't have enough time to do the tablature/notation for the lessons and the "about" tab, so we let the "about" tab go. It's pretty tough to find someone that knows guitar, theory, and can write a complete sentence. ;)Chris Liepe did some of his own too, but I think he's too busy with other work on the site to continue doing them.

wayne66wayne66 replied

Hey Matt, great series. Can you explain what the difference is between using quarter notes as done in measure 9 verses two eighth notes tied together in measure 13? If I'm following everything correctly, they seem to acheive the same thing.

mattbrownmattbrown replied

Hey! You're right. Two eighth notes tied together are held for the same length of time as one quarter note. Basically, in 4/4, the rule is that the measure is separated into two halves - each containing two beats. A tie is used in the measure that you're talking about, because it is technically wrong to sandwich a quarter note in the middle of the measure. It breaks the rule of having a total of two beats on each side of the measure. The tie makes the rhythm easier to read on the fly.

gilbert714gilbert714 replied

Thanks for the less and that is the best way for me to learn the F barre chord.

mattbrownmattbrown replied

Hey! No problem! I'm guessing that you meant to ask "what is the best way to learn the F barre chord." If so, check out the following lessons: Matt Brown - Phase 2 Rock Lesson 11 Hawkeye Herman - Phase 2 Blues Lesson 82 Dennis Hodges - Phase 2 Metal Lesson 5 - The technical exercises in this lesson will build up the independence between your left hand fingers as well as the overall flexibility of the finger and hand muscles. These are all necessary skills when it comes to playing barre chords.

ronin808ronin808 replied

Matt Both you and Jim helped me out in a big way with these lessons, and with doing them with a metronome! Thank you again and Keep on Rockin'!!!

mattbrownmattbrown replied

Hey Ronin! Glad to hear it! I definitely wish that I had started practicing with a metronome from day one. I think it helps more than anything else.

ronin808ronin808 replied

It does get frustrating at times but what doesnt kill you makes you stronger.

mattbrownmattbrown replied

Hi! I consider the information in this series to be of a beginner level. I think these lessons and Jim's reading lessons are good to work through in conjunction with the Phase 1 stuff. I would work on reading music regardless of what level you are currently at. Try to work some of it in each week.

gone workingone workin replied

Nice lesson, Matt. I watched this lesson because it appeared on the homepage and I was curious. Where in one's learning should this series fall? You're explaining the most primary chords, but also theory. It definitely seems followable. But I was just curious if I should do a different series first? I know a lot of isolated things but have pretty gaping holes in my knowledge of the guitar. Thanks. Rhythm is something I definitely want to master.

Reading Music and Rhythm

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

Matt brings all of his years of education right to you with this fantastic series on how to read music. You will start with the very basics and work up to some very advanced concepts.

Intro to Reading MusicLesson 1

Intro to Reading Music

This introductory lesson will walk you through the basics of reading music and reading rhythm.

Length: 15:07 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Reading MusicLesson 2

Reading Music

Learn how to identify notes, the key signature, and the staff. Implement your reading skills by playing a few simple tunes.

Length: 43:32 Difficulty: 1.5 FREE
Rhythm and Time SignaturesLesson 3

Rhythm and Time Signatures

Learn the basics of notation and time signatures. Practice these concepts with a few timing exercises.

Length: 22:01 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
3/4 Time SignaturesLesson 4

3/4 Time Signatures

Now that you've learned a bit about 4/4 time, it's on to 3/4 time.

Length: 22:20 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Reading Music PracticeLesson 5

Reading Music Practice

Now that you know the basics of reading music, it's time to put that knowledge to work with some exercises.

Length: 25:43 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
On Top of Old SmokeyLesson 6

On Top of Old Smokey

Get some more practice reading music and rhythms during your rock fest rendition of "On Top of Old Smokey".

Length: 15:54 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
He's Got the Whole WorldLesson 7

He's Got the Whole World

Matt Brown reviews the G major scale and teaches "He's Got the Whole World".

Length: 13:18 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Amazing GraceLesson 8

Amazing Grace

Matt Brown explains how to read music in the key of F major. He uses the song "Amazing Grace" as an example.

Length: 15:22 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Shoo, FlyLesson 9

Shoo, Fly

Matt Brown teaches the song "Shoo, Fly" as another excellent rhythm and reading example. This song is in the key of G.

Length: 14:46 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Scales and Key SignaturesLesson 10

Scales and Key Signatures

Matt Brown returns with the 10th installment in his Reading and Rhythm series. In this lesson, Matt discusses key signatures.

Length: 14:09 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Minor Key and Aura LeeLesson 11

Minor Key and Aura Lee

In this lesson Matt Brown covers the first minor key song in this series, "Aura Lee".

Length: 12:11 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Scarborough FairLesson 12

Scarborough Fair

In this lesson, Matt introduces the A Dorian mode. He applies it to the song "Scarborough Fair".

Length: 16:29 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Second PositionLesson 13

Second Position

In lesson 13, Matt Brown discusses and demonstrates second position.

Length: 29:52 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
RhythmLesson 14


Lesson 14 is all about rhythm. Matt Brown discusses its importance and provides several exercises.

Length: 20:17 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
On Top of Old Smokey ReviewLesson 15

On Top of Old Smokey Review

Matt Brown reviews "On Top of Old Smokey". This time around, the melody is played in second position.

Length: 7:56 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Reviewing Angels We Have Heard On High Lesson 16

Reviewing Angels We Have Heard On High

For lesson 14, Matt Brown reviews "Angels We Have Heard On High". The melody is now played in second position.

Length: 12:02 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Shoo, Fly ReviewLesson 17

Shoo, Fly Review

Matt Brown reviews the song "Shoo, Fly" in second position.

Length: 8:56 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Rhythm StrummingLesson 18

Rhythm Strumming

This lesson covers right hand rhythm technique. Matt introduces syncopated strumming patterns.

Length: 25:38 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Down by the RiversideLesson 19

Down by the Riverside

Matt teaches the melody to "Down by the Riverside". This tune is used as preparation for learning accompaniment techniques.

Length: 15:02 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
AccompanimentLesson 20


Matt uses the song "Down by the Riverside" to teach accompaniment techniques for rhythm backing.

Length: 12:31 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Fur Elise Pt. 1Lesson 21

Fur Elise Pt. 1

Matt teaches the classic tune "Fur Elise" in a two part series. For Part 1, Matt demonstrates the melody section.

Length: 24:03 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Fur Elise Pt. 2Lesson 22

Fur Elise Pt. 2

In lesson 22, Matt teaches the accompaniment sections to Beethoven's "Fur Elise".

Length: 13:12 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
The Entertainer Pt. 1Lesson 23

The Entertainer Pt. 1

Lesson 23 starts a 2 part series on the classic tune "The Entertainer".

Length: 16:30 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
The Entertainer Pt. 2Lesson 24

The Entertainer Pt. 2

Lesson 24 completes the two part series on "The Entertainer". You will learn the accompaniment in this lesson.

Length: 14:06 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Sea to Sea Pt. 1Lesson 25

Sea to Sea Pt. 1

Matt starts another 2 part lesson, this time on the tune "Sea to Sea" by William G. Leavitt.

Length: 20:36 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Sea to Sea Pt. 2Lesson 26

Sea to Sea Pt. 2

Lesson 26 completes Matt's 2 part series on "Sea to Sea".

Length: 10:17 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Stars and Stripes Forever Pt. 1Lesson 27

Stars and Stripes Forever Pt. 1

Matt introduces the B flat major scale and teaches the song "Stars and Stripes Forever".

Length: 21:31 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Stars and Stripes Forever Pt. 2Lesson 28

Stars and Stripes Forever Pt. 2

Matt completes his two part series on "Stars and Stripes Forever" by teaching the accompaniment.

Length: 7:39 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
D Major in First and Second PositionLesson 29

D Major in First and Second Position

Matt Brown teaches the D Major scale in both first and second positions.

Length: 17:55 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Danny Boy Pt. 1Lesson 30

Danny Boy Pt. 1

Matt Brown demonstrates "Danny Boy" in both first and second positions.

Length: 16:28 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Danny Boy Pt. 2Lesson 31

Danny Boy Pt. 2

Matt Brown teaches the accompaniment to the "Danny Boy" melody.

Length: 12:03 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Silent Night Pt. 1Lesson 32

Silent Night Pt. 1

Matt teaches the Christmas classic "Silent Night."

Length: 18:17 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Silent Night Pt. 2Lesson 33

Silent Night Pt. 2

Matt teaches the accompaniment to the "Silent Night" melody.

Length: 4:55 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Funiculi Funicula Pt. 1Lesson 34

Funiculi Funicula Pt. 1

Matt Brown teaches "Funiculi Funicula" as an exercise in reading and playing in 6/8 time.

Length: 14:39 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Funiculi Funicula Pt. 2Lesson 35

Funiculi Funicula Pt. 2

Matt Brown teaches the accompaniment to "Funiculi Funicula".

Length: 16:40 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Strumming TripletsLesson 36

Strumming Triplets

In lesson 36, Matt provides exercises to help you strum triplet patterns.

Length: 23:30 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Strumming Sixteenth Note RhythmsLesson 37

Strumming Sixteenth Note Rhythms

In lesson 37, Matt Brown demonstrates how to strum sixteenth note rhythms.

Length: 17:28 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Song of the Volga BoatmenLesson 38

Song of the Volga Boatmen

Matt Brown demonstrates the melody and tips for playing the Russian folk tune "Song of the Volga Boatmen".

Length: 11:33 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Song of the Volga Boatmen Pt. 2Lesson 39

Song of the Volga Boatmen Pt. 2

In lesson 39, Matt teaches the accompaniment to "Song of the Volga Boatmen".

Length: 8:35 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Dance of the UkraineLesson 40

Dance of the Ukraine

Matt Brown teaches and demonstrates "Dance of the Ukraine."

Length: 15:37 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Dance of the Ukraine Pt. 2Lesson 41

Dance of the Ukraine Pt. 2

Matt demonstrates the accompaniment to the "Dance of the Ukraine" melody.

Length: 13:36 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Etude by Ferdinando CarulliLesson 42

Etude by Ferdinando Carulli

Matt Brown teaches an etude for classical guitar by Ferdinando Carulli.

Length: 21:20 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Morning Pt. 1Lesson 43

Morning Pt. 1

Matt Brown teaches the melody section to "Morning" by Edvard Grieg.

Length: 18:44 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Morning Pt. 2Lesson 44

Morning Pt. 2

Matt teaches the accompaniment for Edvard Grieg's "Morning."

Length: 8:08 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Bach's Minuet Pt. 1Lesson 45

Bach's Minuet Pt. 1

Matt Brown teaches Bach's classic Minuet.

Length: 14:55 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Bach's Minuet Pt. 2Lesson 46

Bach's Minuet Pt. 2

In lesson 46, Matt Brown covers the accompaniment section to Bach's Minuet.

Length: 5:53 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Little Prelude in C Pt. 1Lesson 47

Little Prelude in C Pt. 1

Matt Brown teaches Bach's "Little Prelude in C."

Length: 16:23 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Little Prelude in C Pt. 2Lesson 48

Little Prelude in C Pt. 2

Matt Brown teaches the accompaniment to "Little Prelude in C" by Bach.

Length: 7:49 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Clementi's SonatinaLesson 49

Clementi's Sonatina

Matt Brown teaches the 2nd guitar part to Muzio Clementi's famous "Sonatina."

Length: 23:46 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Bach's Invention #1Lesson 50

Bach's Invention #1

Matt Brown teaches Invention #1 composed by J.S. Bach.

Length: 21:42 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Third PositionLesson 51

Third Position

Matt takes a look at playing in third position. This lesson will set up future reading lessons that require the third position.

Length: 7:16 Difficulty: 0.0 Members Only
Third Position PracticeLesson 52

Third Position Practice

Matt Brown has you working through Jean Philippe Rameau's Minuet for third position playing in lesson 52. He provides a play along and accompaniment to help your sight reading and playing.

Length: 15:11 Difficulty: 0.0 Members Only
Matt Brown

About Matt Brown View Full Biography Matt Brown began playing the guitar at the age of 11. "It was a rule in my family to learn and play an instrument for at least two years. I had been introduced to a lot of great music at the time by friends and their older siblings. I was really into bands like Nirvana, Alice In Chains, and Smashing Pumpkins, so the decision to pick up the guitar came pretty easily."

Matt's musical training has always followed a very structured path. He began studying the guitar with Dayton, Ohio guitar great Danny Voris. I began learning scales, chords, and basic songs like any other guitarist. After breaking his left wrist after playing for only a year, Matt began to study music theory in great detail. I wanted to keep going with my lessons, but I obviously couldn't play at all. Danny basically gave me the equivalent of a freshman year music theory course in the span of two months. These months proved to have a huge impact on Brown's approach to the instrument.

Brown continued his music education at Capital University in Columbus, Ohio. He completed a degree in Classical Guitar Performance in 2002. While at Capital, he also studied jazz guitar and recording techniques in great detail. "I've never had any desire to perform jazz music. Its lack of relevance to modern culture has always turned me off. However, nothing will improve your chops more than studying this music."

Matt Brown currently resides in Dayton, Ohio. He teaches lessons locally as well as at Capital University's Community Music School. Matt's recent projects include writing and recording with his new, as of yet nameless band as well as the formation of a cover band called The Dirty Cunnies.

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Will Ripley Will Ripley

Join Will Ripley as he gives us all the details of his series, "Rock Guitar for Beginners". You'll be playing cool rock riffs...

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Danny Morris Danny Morris

Hone in on your right hand and focus on getting in the groove. You'll only play one note during this lesson, but it'll be...

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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 127 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 JamPlay.com. Yes, I said the words, ""enjoy learning."" It is by far the best deal for the money.

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