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Some Songs to Play to Help You Play Better

I have always felt that songs and/or riffs can be some of the most effective ways of learning and improving on guitar. Here are a couple I want to share with you. One will be mostly for all of you beginners out there. The other one is for those who want to be challenged a bit more.

Whole Lotta Love (Led Zeppelin)

I asked this question a few weeks ago: who doesn’t want to rock out to some Zeppelin?

Ok, even if you don’t, how about a cool lick to learn?

Jimmy Page had come up with so many great, memorable licks and songs.

Here is one that I think that even if you are a beginner, you should be able to figure it out.

It could still be a challenge for you. If so, think of it this way, when you overcome this challenge, think about how much better you will be for it!

TIP: always slow down videos that you are learning from so that you can get it right. Do it to this video if it is necessary

Here ya go!

Whole Lotta Love

Here’s the TAB that contains the main parts: Whole Lotta Love TAB

YYZ (Rush)

Yep, here is one that will challenge you if you are up for it!

Slow the video down if you need to. The song isn’t the easiest to play, I know.

But I also know that some of you want a BIG challenge.

Well, here you go

Have fun with it!

I hope this helps make you more successful in your playing!Have fun!

Rock on until the next time!

Guitar Finger Exercise Stretching

Guitar Finger Exercises: Stretching to a Song

Getting the fingers in shape using finger exercises should always be a top priority when learning and playing guitar.

I have a ton of exercises that I use with students to help them get their fingers in shape.

However, I think that some of the most fun ways of doing that are learning parts of songs.

For me, it keeps the interest going plus I will have learned a new song to boot!

Finger stretching is one of those things that you really need to keep up with as a guitarist.

There are many songs out there from blues to pop to prog that will require some degree of stretching the fingers. And, if you aren’t fully stretched out, you will have difficulty playing them.

Warm Up Exercise

So, when getting the fingers ready to even play these “stretchy” songs, you need to always warm up!

Let me repeat: always warm up!

This is so true before doing any stretchy type of riffs/songs on the guitar. But really, warm ups should always be a thing.

Do things like the following:

  • Do a chromatic scale warmup.
  • Go over a scale you are learning. Or one that you know that is a favorite.
  • Play some simple songs that you are familiar with.

What you could also do is go to a Guitar Gymnastics Course and take up on some exercises you can work out with. Just click on the link below, enter your email (don’t worry, no spam crap here. I’ll send you some more tips later if you want them, that’s it).

Start Stretching Exercises

After you warm up, you can work on those stretches!

Here is one article I wrote about this very subject that might help:

Guitar Finger Exercises: Stretch Your Way to Success

A “Guitar Exercise” Song for You

Now try this popular song to test your “stretchy-ness”.

Some of you might be ready for it.

Some of you might not. If that is you, don’t be intimidated by this song. It will simply take you longer but the journey will be oh, so worth it! In fact, I strongly encourage you to take it slow! Just work on one part of the riff until you have it. Then go to the next and so on. You have heard the saying that the greatest journey begins with a single step. Make this one one of your single steps!

Important: also, as you watch the video, be sure to watch how my left and right hands are positioned on the guitar. Specifically the wrist and thumbs. Are they bent or pressing in ways that are making it difficult? Do a self check on that. Watch how I am positioned and do your best to mimic what I am doing.

Ok, enough of that. Now on to the song. Here is the familiar riff to Message in a Bottle by The Police.

Have fun!

Grab the TAB here: Message In a Bottle TAB.

Note it says (Another) Guitar Finger Stretch.

I have another one that will be more challenging if you are up for it. Stay tuned, I’ll send it soon. (Or you can simply look at my You Tube Playlist and look for it).

Rock On,

Creative Constraints Guitar Challenge #2: Single Note Soloing

Creative Constraints Guitar Challenge #2: Single Note Soloing

I really think that artists work much better with limited parameters set on them.

For example: when someone hands me a guitar and says “play something”, I often freeze.

Not because I don’t know anything on guitar but because of the unlimited choices I have.

However, if someone hands me a guitar and says “play a Led Zeppelin song”, that’s easy. I now have a limited number of choices to make.

Creativity is also affected by the parameters that we set up for ourselves.

I really, really think you should read this blog post I made on this topic about a year ago. If you did read it once, it is worth another read.

Dealing With Creative Artistic Blocks

Recently I did this You Tube video about one way to explore this idea.

It’s mostly for any of you that can solo or at least are familiar with basic pentatonic scales and can play a melody.

And even if you aren’t to that point yet, give it a watch. It might help you get better from wherever you are at in your guitar playing journey.

It’s a great challenge to constrain your creativity: soloing on one string.

See what you can come up with!

Your fingers need a workout? Check out this FREE course. Your fingers will like you better!

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Rock On!
Tony G


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