songs

  • 11 Best Intermediate Acoustic Guitar Songs To Learn – Part 2

    11 Best Intermediate Acoustic Guitar Songs To Learn – Part 2

    In the part 1 of 11 Best Intermediate Acoustic Guitar Songs To Learn we looked at songs with bar chords, syncopated muting strumming, arpeggios and fingerpicking. Here the list of intermediate acoustic songs to learn continue with these acoustic classic rock hits.
    Blackbird – The Beatles
    Another popular song with my students this fingerpicking classic uses a pedal tone throughout on the G string. The chord shapes use just 1 or 2 fingers based on 10th intervals (a root note and a 3rd an octave up). Use the thumb and fingers 1 and 2 to pluck throughout.

    Tears In Heaven – Eric Clapton
    This ballad from Clapton’s unplugged album has some very nice fingerstyle playing. Read More

  • 11 Best Intermediate Acoustic Guitar Songs To Learn – Part 1

    11 Best Intermediate Acoustic Guitar Songs To Learn – Part 1

    If you’ve been playing acoustic guitar for a while and are comfortable with strumming open string chords (A D E G and C etc) challenge yourself by learning some intermediate level songs. These songs should include more challenging guitar techniques such as bar chords, arpeggios, riffs, syncopated rhythms and fingerpicking. Here are 11 of the best intermediate acoustic guitar songs to learn.
    Space Oddity – David Bowie
    This song has a gazillion (lots anyway) chords with a few bar chords including F Fm and Bb. The more challenging part here is the rhythmic bar chord section using the 4 bar chords C F G and Am which happens after the lyrics “planet earth is blue and there’s nothing I can do”. Read More

  • Song Writing Solutions – Modulation, Relative Keys and Chord Substitutions

    Song Writing Solutions – Modulation, Relative Keys and Chord Substitutions

    Here are some ideas to get your music out of a one key or chord progression rut when song writing. A great way to make your song or track more interesting is to change or modulate the key for a bridge / middle eight / break down section. Follow these few simple rules to learn what chords work together.
    Relative Major & Minor
    One common way to modulate (change) to a different key or tonal centre is to move the song to its relative minor or major. For example if you have a song in the key of C Major, A Minor is the relative Minor due to both chords sharing the C and E notes.

    C Major & A Minor | Download
    Listen to the audio of C & Am.

    If the song is in D Minor the relative major is F Major again because both chords share two notes. In this case F and A. Read More

  • Ripper Rhythm Guitar Riff & Lick Tricks

    Ripper Rhythm Guitar Riff & Lick Tricks

    Many songs are based on just a handful of chords but they build on them to create elaborate riffs and licks. Just think of Lynrd Skynrd’s “Sweet Home Alabama” which is really just 3 chords D C and G. Using these three chords the band created complex layered guitar licks and riffs that helped to make the song a great success.
    In this guitar lesson you will learn how to incorporate licks into your rhythm guitar playing and how to create riffs using scales in a particular key. The 2 most commonly used scales on guitar in rock, blues, country and folk music are the major and minor pentatonic scales.

    The Pentatonic Scale
    The great thing about the major and minor 5 note pentatonic scales is that they use the same notes. Read More

  • How To Decipher Diminished and Apply Augmented Chords

    How To Decipher Diminished and Apply Augmented Chords

    While every song has major, minor and often dominant 7th chords it rare to come across diminished and augmented chords. These dramatic sounding chords are used to create tension in music and can add complexity to the chord harmony of a song. In this guitar lesson you will learn how to play these chords and use them in songs.
    Diminished 7 Chords
    These chords were used in old silent movies to create tension with their “scary” sound. This sound was especially effective in building suspense when someone was tied to the railway tracks and the train was approaching!
    The diminished 7 chord consists of three minor 3rds stacked on top of each other. The name diminished comes from the fact that the minor 3rd is a diminished major 3rd. Read More