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.
Kylehumer asks, "In hotel california for example you use 2 barre chords that are same name( F#) but different shapes n different sounds....how do you know from just the name which one to use and when? when do you know which string make the barre chords name? for example the bm root note and name of the barre chord is on a B, string 6 vs a F# has which is named from that root being on the 5th string"
Kylehumer says ,"I just got into jazz band @ school and i am seeing chords like bB augmented 11ths plus 13 .... that stuff and i have went though and memorized davids? chords major minor, in 7th n 9ths but how do i grasp knowledge of all chords just by the name? do i have to memorize 100s of shapes for every chord type? is their an easy way to learn all of this? i know like augmented is 1 3 #5 and diminished is 1 b3 b5 and i know a C chord has a c e g and a D chord has a d f# a and the rest....but what do i need to know to be able to play any chord by just the name? does jamplay have these lessons? if so which ones?....questions questions questions??? help me out guys! thanks"
KevinT says, "HI, I checked out Brads scales lesson and have a question. I always warm up with minor pentatonic 1st position so I know it blindfolded, I am working on the others. My question is that when I just start messing around with improv it always ends up still sounding like scales. How do I get away from that? Thanks"
John Oconnor59 says, "Hi i have just joined jamplay its fabulous lessons thank you i am doing them with steve eulberg he is a great teacher so laid back and makes it easy to understand now i must admit i have been playing for a year but i went back to the basics i enjoyed it i have done lesson 3 the strumming technique it was brilliant cos i have had problems with my strumming... he showed me the different patterns thank you so much to steve and all you folk a marvelous site indeed when Steve show the strumming patterns how it was made easy to me when you got the proper teacher to explain it to you i am from Ireland so i have taken 4 lessons so far as i want spend a bit a time on me strumming no point going next lesson till i get that one right..the question i want to ask hope its not a silly question when it says its best to master phase one before you move to phase 2..does that mean you have to master all the lessons from all the teachers before i move on ? also as i am not that great on my computer skills still learning that as well how do i post a reply so the teacher can see my reply and the other members too ? and if a friend sends me a message how do i reply to that sorry if i seem a bit silly with these questions its just i am learning this computer too kind regards johnny.."
Jefrank says, "Hello! I was looking at chords for a song on Fretplay.com, and the instruction is 'Tune guitar a half step down.' Does that mean tune every string down half a step? Thanks, and I love your site."
James8 asks, "I have Tabs which include the following notations (starting from low E): xxxx or 2xx4. I searched in the books I have and think that I found out that those notes are called ghost notes. 1. Are these ghost notes? 2. How do I play them? Do you have a lesson showing that? Many thanks for your response."
Brandon says, "I was wondering if there was any way to cut down on the amount of numbness i get in my left hand after practicing on my guitar? I only recently started playing and have found the numbness on my fingertips to be a nuisance at my job. Any suggestions or comments would be appreciated :)"
noamde41 writes "'m stuck at lesson 7, scene 2 of steve's lesson. I'm trying to figure out what makes a basic chord (minor or Major), but I seem to be missing something. I get how he builds the maj7, 7th, and 6th from the basic chord. But I can make sence of a basic chord itself?! Can you give me a little extra material on what makes a basic chord or another website that would explain the basic theory. Thanks for your help and really enjoy your lessons, Steeve."
Subwolley writes "Hello Jamplay, I am a beginner guitar player. I have a quick question about learning/playing chords. My question is: When playing a chord, does every finger needed to play a chord need to be placed exactly behind the fret? It seems to me, that for most of the chords I'm learning, it's impossible to get the needed fingers close to the fret. I know when you play a single note on a string, you need to place a finger exactly behind the fret to get a clear sound, but is this true with chords? Sometimes it's hard to tell from watching the videos where exactly the fingers are. Can you explain a little bit more about finger positioning when learning chords? Thank you, Amber."
Element1290 writes "Is there any special way that one can tell the tuning of a song?"
Billy asks "I have been trying these for about a year now and I just can't seem to nail them. Are their any exercises for both hands that will make it more easier. It seems that my left hand has the most problems."
Jerry Asks "One more question on power chords. In the end of Stev's 9th lesson he goes through power chords useing the barre e shape. It is a little fast for an old fart like myself so I'd appreciate it if you would go through the form Steve goes through when playing these chords. Thanx Jerry."
Samiam010203 asks "I'm finding it hard to form the c major chord. is there any thing i can do to help with the stretch of the fingers to help me fix my problems with this cord. thanks in advance, samiam010203."
ChipC asks "Really like your lessons, I have a question on bending. I watched your lesson, are you rotating your wrist and keeping your fingers locked in to bend the string or are you pushing the string up with your fingers, when you were doing the 7th fret, 3rd string bends...I think I read somewhere that you were suppose to twist the wrist somehow or use the wrist to create the bend...but I'm not sure and wanted to get the word from you."
JeFrank asks "I'm finding strumming with a flat pick more difficult than meets the eye. I can strum down fine, but I find that when I strum up, I catch the strings in a very jagged way. Any tips about that? Also, how much of the pick should emerge from your fingers? Does your hand angle at all as it goes up and down? Thanks!"
Kylehumber asks "how do you know which barre shapes to use when just reading the name F#....in the vid i understand the use a c and a e shape."
Jefrank asks "I'm finding strumming with a flat pick more difficult than meets the eye. I can strum down fine, but I find that when I strum up, I catch the strings in a very jagged way. Any tips about that? Also, how much of the pick should emerge from your fingers? Does your hand angle at all as it goes up and down? Thanks!"
Chipc asks "Brad, Really like your lessons, I have a question on bending. I watched your lesson, are you rotating your wrist and keeping your fingers locked in to bend the string or are you pushing the string up with your fingers, when you were doing the 7th fret, 3rd string bends...I think I read somewhere that you were suppose to twist the wrist somehow or use the wrist to create the bend...but I'm not sure and wanted to get the word from you. Sincerely, Chip Carter."
Brandon asks "I was wondering if there was any way to cut down on the amount of numbness i get in my left hand after practicing on my guitar? I only recently started playing and have found the numbness on my fingertips to be a nuisance at my job. Any suggestions or comments would be appreciated."
Herm 1134 asks "I'm just wondering if more songs will be added to the Phase 3 section. I'm particularly looking for more acoustic songs."
Zonian71 asks "Howdy, Im sure im just not seeing it but it there a quick and easy way to tune my guitar so it will be the same as the instructors.... maybe there is a link on the front page im not seeing that would take you directly to something... Thanks for your time! Eric"
Dennydee asks "Is there any things I can do when I am not playing to keep my fingers moble. Or any exersizes I can do for more speed when I do play thanks ,Dennis."
Stachler Says "I really like the strats but I have small hands so im worried about buying one. All of the standards I have seen have the C neck. I did play one at Sam Ash but didnt have enough time (kids) to really check it out. What do you think?? Are they really that big?? What do you think About the mustangs?? I know they are smaller. Plus Cobain liked them. Thanks."
Ratzo1 asks "Does David Anthony have any phase 2 lessons in the works??"
Ashleygrier says " I have large hands. What type or style non electric guitar should i be considering? I need one with a wide neck."
Karl says "Do you teach guitar for lefties? If so where is on your website? thanks Karl."
Barndad 24 says "I was wondering if there are going to be any lessons on how to play slide guitar."
Crosscut619 Says "I have been a JamPlay member for about 4 days now. I get everything that Steve is telling me about positioning my fingers in my left hand. My only problem is while I'm practicing chords, after a while, my left hand gets stiff. I always have to stop and shake my hand a lot. I don't know how to relax my fingers while playing, because when I do, the sound messes up. Any thoughts?"
Karl asks, "Do you teach guitar for lefties? If so where is on your website?"
Sohail288 asks, "Can there be a lesson that shows how to alternate pick faster and also detailing the correct posture for optimum speed."
Berwin, "I am having a difficult time with the C chord. My fingers are positioned correctly and no dead sound is apparent, it just seems to out of tune and just doesnt sound correct while I am strumming it. I have used been using a tuner and everything seems to be in tune. What am I possibly doing wrong?"
Yvette says, "I have completed 3 lessons. BUt it does not shoe on my progress report. Can you please let me know if there is something that i am suppose to be doing to have this happen Thanks"
Tviolet2000 asks, "I'm new at playing guitar and have always played by myself. Some experienced players want me to jam with them. Do you have any tricks or tips for me to practice before I go out into the real world?"
Stabec says, "I am starting out on an old guitar that my mom used to play. I was noticing that some of the frets were worn down and had flat places on them. Would this make an already difficult task of playing this instrument even harder? Should I refret the worn ones or do I just need to suck it up and mash til my fingers bleed? Thanks, stace"
Kris Weller asks, "I was taught to use the aminor shape on major and minor barre chords the only difference was the majors root is on the 6th and the minor on the 5th and barring the the remaining i saw an example in the chord library using the amajor shape and muting the 1st string how is that done and which is correct?"
Clinsteadt asks, "Is there any where on the website where I can learn a whole song and not just bits and pieces of one. Plus I wanted to ask if you guys could start putting more current songs on the phase three part of the site. Most of the songs on there I haven't heard of before and it would be nice to learn some more current songs."
A member wrote in and was confused about what the "1, 3 and 5" chord portion of theory means, so Steve will explain and talk about his method for remembering which chords go together.
Laurierst wrote in and asked if it was ok to play by ear without learning sheet music. Steve Eulberg answer this question and talks about why sheet music is good, but not necessary.
Ezclay says: "Strum D as shown by Steve is dn dn up up dn up but shown on the chart it is dn up dn up up dn up? Is there anything in your program that can give me the chords and words to You are my sunshine? How do you make a progress report? Thanks Clay";
Sista Vee says: "I am not sure I understand how to start participating in lessons. I am unable to get the teaching videos to show. Still, from what I have been able to get into I have already answered by most pressing reason for joining here with Steve's instruction in strumming. I have gotten stuck strumming all of my songs with the same pattern and now I have a sure understanding of strumming and already hear remarkable differences in my playing in days. How do I actually get to participate now that my fees are paid?"
Rzaffy says: "I noticed the lessons are geared mostly toward Rock. Are there going to be lessons on Jazz Guitar in the near future. Maybe some tips on Wes Montgomery style guitar with octaves and block chords. Thanks."
Benjamin asks "I can not seem to get any tone, or the right tone. It's not the tuning, it is that I do not know when I strum the strings with my right hand when I work the fret board with my left. Do I put my finger down on the fret board then strum with my right hand or strum with my right hand and then put my work my fingers with the fret board?"
Boergoat says "I have trouble getting my pick and my fingers on the left hand on the same string, any suggestions?"
Vjludovico says "Hey guys, I just joined the site very recently. I'm doing Steve's lessons and starting from the beginning. It's only been about a week since I've picked up a guitar for the first time and my calluses are finally starting to form. However I have one problem that I thought would clear itself up once my fingertips started to harden, and that's when I lift my fingers off the strings to change chords or even stop playing I seem to perform a pull off. I lift my fingers directly off the string, and I've tried to lift them off in different ways (I'm not pulling the string or bending it) but I can't seem to stop this problem. Any suggestions?"
Jason Z asks "When reading tablature i know the numbers on the line represent the fret to be played but what does is mean when there is a 3b on a line?"
To paraphrase WitchBlade's original inquiry: "I often have trouble holding the guitar properly as instructed by Steve because of my large breasts. Any advice?"
Magic asks "I signed up to learn how to play an electric guitar, but all the beginners programs are for acoustic. Is there any lessons on here for beginners with electric guitars."
I am doing good with the G chord, and the D7 watching Steve. For some reason, my meaty sausages are having a hard time with the C chord. My 3rd finger keeps mashing the D, and I cannot get a crip grip on the B.....
I think you guys should get several different styles of songs to learn with audio and video. It would be great to be able to take a lesson and then have a bunch of songs to choose from to learn while continuing to take lessons. From what I can see there are only three songs to learn right now and only one has audio and tabs. Is that right or am I looking in the wrong place? I'm enjoying the lessons so far. Thanks Steve