How To Play Rhythm Guitar – Rhythm Guitar Lesson #1

Hi! I’m Nate Savage and welcome to the Rhythm
Guitar Quick-Start Series. Playing rhythm guitar is a really essential skill to have,
whether you just want to learn your favorite songs, you want to play with your friends
and jam with them or whether you want to play live music. It’s a really important skill
to have. Whether you’re brand new to rhythm guitar
or you’ve been playing for a while and you just want to get to that next level, this
series is for you. I know there are a lot of things to consider in rhythm guitar and
sometimes it can feel overwhelming. That’s why I created this series. I want to give
you the most fundamental things you’re going to need to lay a solid foundation for your
rhythm guitar playing. Being a good rhythm guitarist is something
that it takes time and practice to develop but it’s really important and unfortunately
a lot of newer players tend to focus just on practicing lead guitar when the reality
of it is that probably 80% if you’re playing live or with your friends, 80% of what you’re
going to be playing is rhythm guitar, bass and not leads.
With that in mind, being a good solid rhythm guitarist can really set you apart from the
crowd. If your rhythm guitar playing is solid, people are going to enjoy playing with you and they’re
going to enjoy listening to you and you’re going to be the one that gets the gig.
So, the goal of this series is to give you a solid foundation and the key things that you’re
going to need to know as a rhythm guitarist. By the end of it, you’re going to be able
to play live, if that’s your goal, better. You’re going to be able to play with your
friends and learn songs better too. And just so you know, it doesn’t matter if you have
an acoustic or electric guitar for this series. All of the things that I’m going to teach
you in here are equally important to both. Now we’re not going to focus too much on theory
throughout the series. This is a quick-start series, right? So I wanted you to focus on
getting your hands on the guitar and playing the most important things for you as a rhythm
guitar player. We’re going to go over power chords, bar chords, open chords, the most
important chord progressions you’re going to need to know as a musician, and then we’re
going to switch our focus to your strumming hand. You’re going to learn some of the
most common strumming patterns that you need to know as well as work on your timing. The
first thing that we’re going to go over is power chords. We’re going to learn some
shapes for your power chords and how to move them all around the neck. And then we’re
going to move on to bar chords. I know bar chords are source of frustrations for a lot
of newer players, so I’m going to give you some tips to make your bar chords sound great.
Now as a rhythm guitarist, it’s important for you to know all of your open chords. I’m
going to teach you the most essential open chords that you’re going to need in your
little chord library. Once we get these essential chord shapes down, like I mentioned earlier
we’re going to go over some of the most important strumming patterns for you to know.
These strumming patterns that I’m going to teach you are kind of like the building
blocks or the fundamentals for a lot of more advanced strumming patterns, so this is going
to be really important for you to get down. After that, we’re going to start working
on developing your timing. That’s one of the most critical aspects of rhythm guitar
that’s often ignored. The cool thing about working on your timing is you don’t have
to have your guitar with you. You can be anywhere. You can be in your car driving, listening
to the radio, in a waiting room, it doesn’t matter. And finally, once we get your timing in order, I’m going to show you how to kind of embellish
your strumming through single bass notes and muted strums. These are two little aspects of strumming that can really dress up an otherwise mundane strumming pattern. I always think
that applying everything that you’re working on the guitar to real music is really important to helping you get better and grow as a musician. So, throughout this series, I’ve supplied you with a couple of jam tracks that you can use to work on the stuff that we’re going over.
It’s just a little more fun that using a metronome. Get ready for some really rewarding
things to work on. If you apply yourself and work on this stuff, you’re going to see
a dramatic improvement in your rhythm guitar playing. Thanks for watching. In the next lesson, we’re going to go over some basic power chords.
If you have any questions at all, you can leave them here in the comments. I’ll get
back to you there or you can email me, [email protected] See you.