Modern Country Guitar from Andy Wood

Andy Wood offers a crash course in telecaster abuse. Learn the tools to give your playing that deep fried sass that only comes from country. Check out the free previews and course details.

Guitar Help for Common Issues (Page 1.4)

View our archives of member questions. Before our introduction of Live Courses, we would field questions from our members are record video responses from our pool of teachers. This is the result! Please be aware, some of the video quality in these questions is quite poor, but the knowledge is still valuable.

Slanted Bridges and String Dynamics

When a string is fretted at half of it's length, the pitch goes up one octave. I've noticed that the bridge on most guitars is set at a slight angle, making the lower pitched strings run a slightly longer distance from the nut to the bridge. That means the 12th fret (which runs parallel to the nut) can't be exactly at the halfway point of each string. Why is the bridge set at an angle - and how can the octaves (or other notes for that matter) be in tune with each other?

Thumb Position

Felipe asked "Which is the correct position for thumb finger on left hand when we are playing barre chords? Thank you very much for your support."

Using a Capo

Rwolfe asked "Hello jamplay! I just joined and am very impressed with the site. My question deals with using the capo. I play sometimes with two other guitarists and it can get boring if we are all playing the same chords open on the guitar. I have been told that 3 different guitarists can capo at different spots so that each guitar has its own voice, say in a G-D-C progression. Maybe one guitar is open, and the other two have capos. Thanks again for a great website."

Arthritis and Playing

Josmjm asked "I just rejoined . I have arthritis in my left chording hand . The fourth ( ring finger is the worst ) Genes and breaking up fights in the Bronx in the 80's has brought me to this point . I can't Barre . Any thoughts ?"

Learning Songs

Jreely08 asked "Hi Steve! I have a question about learning songs. My problem is I get excited to learn a new song and get really good at playing the beginning, then I get bored and never end up learning the rest. Do you have any advice for me? Thnx I love Jamplay! Jay."

Barre Chords and Transistions

Mcs88keys asked "I know how to construct all of the barre chords and how to find them on the fretboard. But I need help with switching cleanly, especially from an open to a barre chord. (like D to Bm or E to C#m) I never feel secure when I have to play a barre chord. I'm always hoping I nail it instead of knowing I will. Do you have any tips on what to aim for or some way to practice more effectively? Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks, Michael."

Restringing a Guitar

Vedanta asked "I am a beginner and snapped the 4th string of my Fender Strat - before I set out to re-string my guitar I have a few questions - * Should I change all the strings or just the one that is broken? * What type of strings should I use - as in, which string composition and string gauge? * What is the best way to wind a string - there are multiple techniques all over the internet, what is the best way to do it? * Should I remove all the strings at one and then string or do in one by one. It would be very nice to have a video on how to best string a electric guitar. Thank You, Vedanta."

Spider Chords

Chodypth asked "I was wondering, I can't seem to find any information on the Spider Chord Dave Mustaine does in Wake up Dead and Ride the Lightning, I think I'm doing it right but it seems to easy and people seem to say its very difficult. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t-twpY_XQyg&feature=related."

How to Build Scales

Walter_Mundstock asked "Hi Guys. First of all, I have joined JamPlay a few days ago and I have to say that you guys do an AMAZING job. I wanted to stay at home to be with my recently born daughter and didn't want to quit having guitar classes... JamPlay met perfectly my needs! Thanks guys! I have been having classes about scales, have been practicing and memorizing them, but I would like to understand a little better how these scales are built. I would like to be able to think about any note and build the scale for that key by myself. An exercise I have been doing is to listen to songs, identify its notes and build the scale by applying the WWHWWWH steps. That usually get me setup with something that seems quite right... Is there a "formula" to build pentatonic and other scales just like I'm doing ? Apart of that, I don't really understand what is the difference among a chromatic scale, diatonic scale and so many others... Please help me understand the context of these scales. Thanks. Walter."

Restringing a Guitar

Vedanta asked "I am a beginner and snapped the 4th string of my Fender Strat - before I set out to re-string my guitar I have a few questions - * Should I change all the strings or just the one that is broken? * What type of strings should I use - as in, which string composition and string gauge? * What is the best way to wind a string - there are multiple techniques all over the internet, what is the best way to do it? * Should I remove all the strings at one and then string or do in one by one. It would be very nice to have a video on how to best string a electric guitar. Thank You, Vedanta."

Barre Chords and Transistions

Mcs88keys asked "I know how to construct all of the barre chords and how to find them on the fretboard. But I need help with switching cleanly, especially from an open to a barre chord. (like D to Bm or E to C#m) I never feel secure when I have to play a barre chord. I'm always hoping I nail it instead of knowing I will. Do you have any tips on what to aim for or some way to practice more effectively? Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks, Michael."

Beginner and Erik Mongrain

Anexa85 asked "I've recently fallen in love with the way Erik Mongrain plays, but as a beginner I'm not sure where to start if I want to head in that direction. I'm not ready for Erik's lessons yet, but I would love to get on the right track for doing that. So the question is, where should I begin?."

Fingerpicking Technique

Ablazich323 asked "Hey guys, I've been going through Mark's lessons for the past few months and those lessons are mostly (if not all) about rhythm guitar and using a pick. However, i do want to expand my playing and i have tried to sorta teach myself how to finger pick but it isn't working out too well. Any advice that you can give me with finger picking and also are there any specific few lessons i can look at to give me some insight? Appreciate all the help."

Last Steam Engine Train Tab

Budd asked "The tab and video doesn't match in the song Last Steam Engine Train with Jim what am i missing."

Scales and Palm Muting

Miles977 said "Wow do you play a scale with palm muting?"

Natural Harmonics on an Acoustic Guitar

Blueguitar420 asked "I have been doing Brads lesson set on an acoustic electric guitar. Most of the time I just play acoustic for his lessons. I was just wondering if natural harmonics are possible on an acoustic guitar. I skipped the lesson because I was not getting a distinct sound. Please let me know! Thanks Brandon."

Rhythm and Strumming

Drnat1 asked "I am trying to play songs & am finding it difficult to work out a suitable strumming pattern. How to I work this out when all I have is the cords & the lyrics? I try to listen to what the original is but find it hard to work out what is actually played or how to sort the timing of my strumming so it corresponds to the cords & lyrics? This seems to be holding me back!! Many thanks for any help!!"

Truss Rod Adjustment

Matej asked "How do I properly adjust the truss rod of my electric guitar? I have no bow / gap between the top of a fret and the string when I check my neck relief, so I get nasty fret buzz on the open positions of the first two strings ( string action is not the problem here ). One more thing, I have a two way truss rod :o. Not in the question: David MacKenzie could best answer my question as he has an ESP guitar like me."

Broken Finger and Dexterity

Hana14 asked "So I broke my pinkie and ring finger on my right hand and whenever I play they stiffen and its really hard to curl and spread them is it because I broke those two fingers?"

Curious About Effects Chain

Sheldon_31 asked "Dear to whoever it concerns, I have been really looking into running an effects chain, but i have no idea what stuff to use on it so far i've decided to use a boss overdrive pedal and either Kirk Hammet's signature cry baby or the Dimebag cry baby from hell. I am mainly interested in a nice melodic metal sound possibly just a really filthy textured sound nice and crisp which would be really easy to pinch harmonic on. So any suggestions on what i should use????"

Floyd Rose and Warlock System

Akilots asked "Is that true that if I have guitar with Floyd Rose system on my guitar, and if I lock-in nuts guitar will stay in tune much much longer!And what do you think about B.C. Rich Warlock classic model electric guitar, about quality of this one?"

Creating Backing Tracks

Akelley asked "Hey i was wondering how to write a backing track sort of chord progression, perhaps for the minor scale? i know that every scale requires a different sort of chord progression behind it."

Pinging While Tuning

Colton582 said "Sometimes when i tune my strat i hear a ping, however my string is not broken and my nut is fine. Also, when I go back to tune my guitar the string that pinged is perfectly tuned. Please explain this."

Questions About the F Chord

Sidewinder665 asked "Hey, any chance someone could show me/everyone how to finger an F Chord using the frets 1 on top e, 1 on B, 2 on G and 3 on D? In particular, if you are supposed to barre top e and B with one finger then an explanation of how to do a two string barre would be very useful. Thanks."

Guitar Problems

Bron1003 asked "Hi everybody, I'm a beginner and have a question about maintenance. I have an Epiphone EA 250 hollow body/electric and while was tuning my guitar the high E string went "ping". I thought the string broke but it was actually the nut. The nut split and sheared off at the corner. My question is, can I replace it myself or should I take it to the pro's? I'm learning a lot from the instructors here and am grateful for all they/you have done for my traing needs. Thanks again, Ron."

Aeolian Mode

Akelley asked "I don't know if you guys already have a lesson about this, but i am trying to learn the aeolian mode up and down the guitar. I know Brad Henecke shows it in 1 position, but can you guys do a lesson on using the aeolian mode for solos? i can rip through the scale but i cant then phrase into the Dorian or whatever scale comes next. I'm a bit confused as you can probably tell from this butchered question."

Sheet Music and Songs

Lazyeye asked "I have listened to the lessons and have not been able to get the sheet music with its chords, melody and lyrics to the guitar so that the song sounds like what is on the sheet music. Example: The song I just called to say I love you by Stevie Wonder. I have the lyrics and the chords and when I listen to some one play it, it doesn't sound at all like what I play. Need help. I need to see and learn how that process of getting the information off of the sheet music on to the guitar works."

Right Hand Technique

Lucasholland asked "Hey guys, I've got a question on right hand technique as it applies to playing with a pick. It seems that there are 2 main styles out there: The first one involved the hand looking like a fist. The other style has the fingers kind of sticking out. I hope you know what I mean. When I first started I played in the first style all the time but I read on the internet that the second style gives you more accuracy and my experimentation has so far confirmed this. I'm not as adept at that technique as I am at the fist-like technique but with practice I think I could get there. What's your take on those 2 techniques? Thanks, Lucas."

Dead/Muted Notes While Playing

Landshark asked "I just bought an Ibanez ARX320 from my local guitar shop. It played nice while I was in the store, but after a week, I am getting fret buzz along the entire neck and when I play the 9th fret on the 1st string, the note sounds dead or heavily muted. Also, on the 15th fret of the 1st string, whenever I bend the note, it immediately goes dead. What could be causing these issues? I'm about to return this thing to the store."

Irresistible Metal Riffs

Akelley asked "Hi, I have watched Dennis's metal guitar videos, but I wanted to know, how can you form an irresistible metal riff?"

Any Means Necessary

Dime asked "Hi Dennis, you and the other teachers from jamplay kill em all.The only thing i would like to ask you is if you could please,make a lesson on shredding that would be awesome and a lesson on the song 'Any Means Necessary' by hammerfall. thanks dennis."

Playing Bends

Cmp1969 asked "I just watched Matt's lesson on bends along with DMAC's. The one thing I am having trouble with is bending the string when you are fretting the one above it. Especially if it is on the same fret. For example: 14th fret on the 2nd and 3rd string and bending the 2nd string. Frank Hannon of Tesla does that alot on the song "Song and Emotion". Can you please explain or demonstrate it? Thanks"

Fret Board Memorization

Hendoe30 asked "Hey guys, I was wondering if you could do a quick video regarding tips for memorizing the fretboard. I watched Mark Brennan's video about left had technique. In it he said to go through each string and find all the A's, then move on to the B's, etc . . . I thought I would try a different approach and started with B & C and E & F. I thought that since there was no half note in between them that this might speed up the process for me. Am I looking at this the right way or should I use Mark's way. Or maybe you could suggest something else? Thanks and ROCK ON!"

Learning Scales

Miccgil88 asked "Hello, I started playing about 2 or 3 months ago, and, I believe have come a long way (thank you very much for the awesome learning tools). Now I'm looking at getting into improvisation on both electric and acoustic. Every time I look into it, I always hear to learn scales. As I look through the scales, I notice there's a whole lot of them. Is there an order or a way you would recommend learning scales? Thank you, Craig"

Using Poly Rhythms

Opus asked "I would like to start incorporating poly rhythms into my playing but don't know where to start? Any advice would Be great!"

Nylon Strings on a Steel String Guitar

Dallendouglas asked "Thank You for taking my question! I would like to know if there is any problem with changing from Metal Strings to Nylon Strings on one of my Guitars. I have a Older "Harmony Seoverign"(1960) and have used it over the years as my practice Guitar and recently purchased a new Acoustic Electric. I have taken an Interest in Classical and would like to use Nylon strings on the Harmony. Is that a Problem?can I just change them over?? Thank You. Dennis Douglas."

Transcribing

Kroza asked "I was wonderin' will there be some transcribing lessons here at jamplay, if not i was hopin' to get some tips from you guys. thanks in advance."

Hooks for a Strap

Hcso asked "I bought an acoustic guitar that has a hook for a guitar strap on the bottom of the guitar but not on the top. I know there is a way to add this but I'm afraid I'll chip and crack the wood on it. Any suggestions?? Believe it or not I liked the guitar so much that I never notice until later. Any answer from any instructor is fine. Thanks."

Upstroke Without a Pick

Dmitry asked "Hi guys! Question from a beginner about playing without a pick. I'm trying to figure out how to do down and upstrokes by hand (mostly for the chorus parts of songs / bridges where the usual strumming pattern gets boring). The downstrokes, where the nails of my fingers strike the strings, come pretty naturally. But on the way up, some of my fingers (pinky and ring finger mostly) get caught on the High-E and B strings. Are there any (1) hand positions/movements, and (2) exercises that you guys can recommend to fix the problem? Many thanks!"

Pick Slipping SIdeways

Sylvia asked "I've had this ongoing problem with my pick slipping sideways when I try to double and triple pick. I've heard about this stuff called Gorilla snot.... but I'm broke and don't have a gorilla. Do you think my own boogers would work? Also... will it make me sound like Buckethead?"

Steel or Nylon Strings

Capo asked "Hi, Jim. I am always (really coveting I think) wanting to buy a nylon stringed guitar to play alternating finger style guitar on. I don't know, of course, but I imagine this to be obviously easier on the fingernails but it must have a downside which I surmise is in the compromised sound or timbre of the notes and chords. And, others such as yourself, Jim, do not use the nylon string guitar and that makes me suspicious. Although I did see a vid of Buster Jones (is that his name) playing what appeared to be a nylon stringed acoustic electric and doing all right with it I might add. Another point I argue with my mind over is that I will never be a professional guitarist, this is not my goal, so I seem to justify my lame argument with that fact and my heart says well, therefore, go ahead and buy one (nylon stringed). Well, enough said. What do you think of these thoughts. You must have some opinions and I would love to hear them so I won't waste my money unnecessarily. All the best, Capo."

Playing Eruption

Deathxrocker asked "What is the easiest way to play Eruption by Eddie Van Halen."

Exercises that Sound like Metal

Deathxrocker asked "Hi guys i was wondering if there are any left hand exercises that sound like rock or metal riffs?"

Suitable Picking Pattern

Nick Johnston asked "Could you advise on a suitable picking pattern for this lovely song, i am playing basically in G G,Em,C,Am D, D7,C,G I am told it is in 3/4 time ,but i just can't settle on a fluent pick Any help welcome Regards Nick."

Pod XT Live with Marshall Amp

Fourwheeler asked "I watched Brad's video of effects and his Marshall,that was a great lesson,but I'm still confused about setting up my Marshall Mg 100 HDFX and my Pod XT Live.I want to use my Marshall's built-in effects(they are the perfect sound for me).I want to use my POD for the pedal,tuner,and maybe a handful of presets.When I plugged my POD in the front of the amp it was killing my Marshall's sound.Do you have any advise for me . Thanks, Fourwheeler."

A Minor Pentatonic Scale Positions

Hcso asked "My question is for Brad Henecke. I have memorized and have been practicing the 4 positions of the A minor pentatonic scale. I am trying to get to a point where I can go to any position and just play solos out of a box or position. I'm having a hard time with this. Does it matter if you start out on the 6 th string going up the position or should I start on the first string and work down the position trying to pick notes. I watch you and it looks like you do both and I imagine your suppose too. I find a pattern of my own that I like and then I'm stuck because I try to jump into another position and it don't sound right at all lol. Hope this makes sense. I really enjoyed the lessons, however haven't learned the 5th position yet. Josh."

Setting Neck Without a Truss Rod

Niandra asked "Hi guys...i'm not sure whether a question similar to this one has been already asked. I have a '51 Martin 0-15. All in all the guitar is in a nice condition but im not sure whether it would be the right time for a new neck setting. What is an indicator for that? As far as i am informed martins from this age didn't yet have theese/those TrussRods (or how it is spelled-sorry for my english it's beschissen ;-) so in case IF i have to bring it to a professional luthier. Actually i think the playing is very very nice and the spaces between fretboard and strings up to the 12th fret seem normal but im not sure and what do you think would be the "average" price? And bye the way--- can you tell what's up with mr . fishmann's lessons???? Thanks."

Soloing and Open Strings

Keithlasko asked "Whenever I am soloing and I hit an open string, the note seems to drag on and make the next few notes sound awful. what can I do about that?"

Drum Beats and BPM

Bryanwb4402 asked "Thanks to all of you guys....This site is so awesome and i tell all my friends about this site...Keep up the good work.... Question: I have a drum looper with a whole host of beats from country to metal and any BPM I need. I am having a tough time trying to figure out what drum beat and speed I should use for certain songs. One of them I learning to play right now is "Always with me Always with you by Satriani". What drum beat should I use to play with this song. Is there like a list that states "Use this BPM for this song" I hope this makes sense... thx so much."

Flats and Sharps

Dank asked "I have a hard time remember which way to go for flats and sharps, example b flat?"

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