All in Foundations of Guitar

What is a guitar cutaway?

[Chris's new Kronbauer by Larry Jacobsen, Attribution 2.0 Generic]

A guitar cutaway is when a guitar's body is "cut away" just below the bottom of the neck. Cutaways make it easier to play lead guitar licks and melodies up higher on the neck, like above the 12th fret.

Want to learn more about guitar cutaways and why guitars have them? I've included a bunch of high-resolution pictures for your viewing enjoyment in this blog post.

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?

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.