Getting in Tune with my guitar

Now it’s time for tuning! I actually found it quite difficult to find a video or guide that would tell you the steps to do this. Most would just play a note for you to tune to, but not tell you how. I had a general idea of how to tune a guitar just from watching my sister play it, but wanted to find something to verify how it is actually done. After a bit of looking I came across this great YouTube video. The girl who made this video goes at a great pace, explains how the guitar is strung, and shows how turning the pegs left or right will make the pitch become higher or lower.

Now, you could certainly just tune along with her and her tuner, or better yet, why not get your own tuner!

I checked out the Apple App Store to see what types of tuners are available for free, and the first one I came upon had great reviews. It is called “GuitarTuna” by GuitarBots. It has an auto and a manual mode, and shows you in Green if you’re close to the right pitch, or red if you’re off, and it tells you if you are too high or too low. I also like that it has a little depiction of the guitar pegs and highlights which note you are working on so you know which peg and string to tune. This is a great app so far, and I see that it has a metronome, which may come in handy later on!

 

As I do have a musical background (I sing and also play piano and clarinet) tuning instruments is not new to me, so I would say I have an ear for it. Once I learned what to do I could hear the correct pitches quite easily, and tuned the guitar right up!

Next up, let’s see what these strings are all about and see if I can play some notes!

Tuning in again?

So yesterday I thought that my first step would probably be to tune the instrument to get it ready to play. Well, from my research I’ve concluded that this is not the case.

Bobby Kittleberger has a great post about the steps to take when you’re learning the guitar, and includes an awesome chart to follow!

According to the chart, my next step should be to actually hold the guitar. Why didn’t I think of that? Ok, great, that’s the next step to learn, but the article didn’t really say how to do this. Obviously from people I’ve seen play you hold the neck with one hand and rest the base on your lap, or alternatively use a neck strap. But which way do you hold it? What is the “right-handed” or “left-handed” way? Since this article didn’t get into the specifics of how to actually accomplish the “No. 2” block of steps, I found a different article to help me out.

fretjam.com has a great article about how to hold the guitar and guitar picks. Turns out that if you’re “right-handed” like I am, then you should hold the neck in your left hand,which leaves your right hand free to do the strumming. You should sit with your back straight, your “fretting arm” at a 90 degree angle, and your elbow of your strumming arm can rest on the top of the guitar as a “pivot point.” The article has a lot of pictures and variations that I found to be quite helpful!

Can hold a guitar. Check.

 

I didn’t have anyone around to take a photo, so you get this selfie photo instead of me with my guitar! Taking a selfie while holding a guitar is not easy to do I might add!

The anatomy of a guitar

I’ve seen a guitar before. My younger sister learned how to play when she was in high school, so there’s certainly been one around my house before, and I’ve watched her play a lot before. Then there’s all the musicians that I love who play the guitar. It’s safe to say the guitar is an instrument I can easily identify.

But I certainly couldn’t tell you all the parts of a guitar. Internet to the rescue! I found a great little article that goes through the anatomy of a guitar that is even printable by teachers.

Great! Now that I know the parts of a guitar, what’s next?
I’m not sure, but I would imagine that tuning would be important…yes, a tuned instrument is generally preferable to one that is out of tune. I know that much from my years of playing piano and the clarinet!

Stay tuned for more! Haha!

How to Play the Guitar

For our major project in ECMP 355 we have been tasked with selecting a skill, and learning how to do it through finding resources online, and then documenting our progress!

There is one thing that I have longed to learn, and this project presents the perfect opportunity for me to do it. So, over the next 3 months, I am going to learn how to play the guitar!

Step 1: Obtain a guitar

My sister is lending me her guitar!

My sister is lending me her guitar!

Step 2: Find resources to learn what Step 3 is…