Try watching TV when practicing

Though I really hate to admit it, practicing guitar could be a whole lot easier if we watched TV while doing it. Why?

When we first learn something new, it is at the cognitive level. Unless we have Super-Man-esque concentration levels, we need a distraction. Thankfully, there is Seinfeld and Parks and Recreation reruns. After we learn something new, we need to play it, not just understand it.

Try this out for starters:

Try learning two new chord progressions. It could be something easy like say: G-Bminor-A-E (the Bminor is thrown in there because it isn't the most used chord in pop music). Or it could be something more in line with where you are at with your skill level. Then just sit down on the couch, watch your favorite Indiana Jones movie, and then when it gets to the part where Indiana Jones is punching some evil dude, check on your progress (which is like every three minutes in those movies).

Voila. Watching TV gives your brain a break, and allows your fingers to get more nimble at playing guitar.

What do the dots on a guitar neck mean?

What do the dots on a guitar neck mean?

The dots on the guitar neck are visual references. They help you jump to a different part of the neck quickly, easily, and with accuracy.

For example, if you were playing Tunnels by the Arcade Fire, you might play a power chord on the 1st fret followed by a power chord on the 10th fret. The dots, being visual references, make a nine fret jump a bit easier. 

The rest of this post will go over all the details of the dots on a guitar neck, what they mean, and how you can use them to augment your guitar fun. Let's hit it...

What is a guitar pickup?

What is a guitar pickup?

To grossly over-simplify, guitar pickups are permanent magnets that are coiled with copper embedded underneath the guitar strings on your guitar.

These coiled magnets create a magnetic field which then detects disturbances in the movements of the strings and transfers that signal to an amp.

If your eyes are glazing over, I empathize. Seriously, I do. The rest of this post will clear up the mystery of guitar pickups. Let's hit it.