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Real Guitar Live #32 | Something Different…


Welcome to Real Guitar Live! It’s going to be just me from my home studio today. We have a lot of great questions to go through so let’s dive right in. Check out the timestamps for the questions to skip ahead.

If you’d like to be contacted for the next Q&A live, be sure to join the mailing list at 

[2:34] 1) Is it normal to have fingertip pain during my first months of guitar playing? Am I doing something wrong? In any case, what could I do to relieve the pain?

2) What could I do to prevent my fingernails from getting broken?

3) What can I do to learn how to play a song? It has some parts that are difficult for me, some complicated chords and I do not get them right.

[7:12] I’ve been to lounge type performances where there is a person playing acoustic guitar and singing along with some type of “tracks” that has the song minus the guitar and voice. What type of equipment are they using? I wouldn’t mind having something like this.

thanks, your program is great

[18:27] I have watched some rhythm guitarists who during parts of their songs seem to play open chords in the upper part of the neck, sometimes as a transition between chords. I know how to play barre chords all over the neck, but what are these open chords they are playing?

[18:20] Will barre chords get easier? I’m trying to stay with it but my left hand has tendonitis. 

[22:19] I’m having trouble learning chord triads on the top strings. Can you help me?

[23:56] I am wanting to learn some hand percussive techniques for fingerstyle on a steel-string acoustic guitar. I am learning a finger. Any tips would be great.

Do you think a pick up for the acoustic guitar is needed for percussive techniques and if so what kind?

[25:46] I need some advice to play difficult songs with a fast tempo. I especially have difficulty changing from open chords to bar chords because I have to take my eyes away from the sheet music.

How should I train this?  Perhaps practice the song so well to know exactly what chord change is coming next without having to look at the sheet music?

[28:43] With barre chords, sometimes my fingers can’t reach the notes they need to no matter how hard I stretch. Will this get better with practice? 

[31:31] How can I angle my fingers to play chords without touching other strings?

[33:19] I am a member of Real Guitar Success, and we don’t talk a lot about the names of notes or reading music in the lessons. Will we talk about this down the road? -Tim 

[39:19] My strumming patterns don’t sound good! How do I make them sound good, especially the up strums? 

Can you give us some good strumming patterns?

[45:04] I use light strings, but wonder if there’s an advantage to go heavier? 

[47:20] Please talk about the surf technique.

[47:46] When should I change strings?

[51:20] Are there different strums for different time signatures?

[57:25] What is the story of your Yamaha guitar? What is your gear preference? 

[1:00:23] Do the nylon strings wear out quicker than steel strings? 

[1:02:16] How do you hold your hand for fingerpicking? Do you rest your hand against the guitar?

[1:04:18] How often will you be doing these lessons online?

[1:05:35] Did you ever think about giving up guitar when you first started?

[1:07:20] Please tell me how to strum for any song.

Links Mentioned:

Finger Tapping and Percussive Techniques:

How To Finger Tap Acoustic Guitar III p1/2

How to Slap, Tap and Pop on Acoustic Guitar with Justin King

Band-In-A-Box - I use this. It’s great for creating your own “tracks” to jam with. Someone also mentioned Garage Band for Mac users.

Best Acoustic Guitar Amps under $400 I did some research and wrote a post on what I believe to be the best self-contained amps that can be used to play guitar and sing along with background tracks.

Links for RGS Members (login first, then click on the link):

Hand Stretching Exercises for Guitarists

Learning Notes On The Guitar Fretboard

I also have an extended course with exercises and quizzes being edited as I write this.

Not a member yet? No problem. Sign up here for the 14 day trial for $1, then click the link above. I’m hoping you stick around…  but if not the 2 weeks should be enough time to get the benefit from these links.

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  1. Thanks for the nice lauded back approach to answer and demonstrating them. Older guitar player here. I wish I had someone like you and this venue to explain the little things that open the doors to getting better.. counting, baby steps to bar chords.. experimenting with the sound, ( moving chords up and down the neck). Practice. At the end you said to play. Better 15 minutes a day, a hour once a week. Be careful be safe be well tune it up and play

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