• What do you think about the period after the holidays?
    Well, it is a great time to practice your blues guitar. Those cold, short days, and that interminable stretch of consecutive weeks without a day off can provide insight and stir those hidden feelings deep within. Play those blues, winter is meant for blues.
  • Johnny B. Goode intro lesson please?
    Ok. Well, you know we don't do songs but....

    Now, this is not necessarily for beginning guitar players, but if you would like to learn this guitar classic, we can point you in the right direction.

    Check that, go ahead you beginning guitarists, this one IS for you.

    One of the best instructional video for the learning the intro to Johnny B. Goode, can be found here.

    No tab but a wonderfully, clear presentation of this all time great intro.

    Johnny B. Goode Guitar Lesson (full)


    Please note the slow, actual lesson starts at about 2:47 of this presentation. The entire song is played in the first couple of minutes.

    Take your time, bit by bit.

    A pretty solid transcription can be found in the Hal Leonard book: Chuck Berry (Guitar Recorded Versions). Amazon link shown. If anyone knows of a better transcription, please let us know.

    Rock on.

  • What about all the mistakes?
    Sigh! There are some and we do try and correct them when we stumble upon them or when you, our diligent readers, point them out. We do appreciate the feedback and apologize for our errors. They are never intentional. Please refer to the following link for our general error policy.
  • Should I spend any time learning the modes?
    Well, that may depend on just how much time you have. There is much musical value to be found within the world of the modes.
  • Are scales important?
    Very.
  • What is the single most important recommendation you can make to a beginning guitarist?
    Pick up that guitar and play.
  • What is the best way to learn the notes on the fretboard?
    I am not sure there is a best way, but I can suggest a couple or three.

    Understanding the pattern of similar notes is a great aid. Take a quick look at the diagram that shows all of the C notes on the fretboard and notice how the C notes are located from one to another. Notice how the C notes at the 8th fret (high and low E string) have a companion C note at the 10th fret at the D string. Check out how the location of the C notes on one string are related to the C notes on other strings. Once you start examining the positional relationships among the same note you will notice all of these fretboard distances are 'fixed' and can be applied to other keys. Take some time and play only the C notes up and down the fretboard. Notice the fret and string jumps that are required to link the notes. You'll only find 12 of them and a dozen isn't too many to absorb in a good, working, study session.

    Triads are another great fretboard learning aid. The allow you to learn 3 notes at a time, and like other forms and patterns on the guitar, they are moveable and equally applicable to all keys. The other advantage of learning the triads is that you can combine chordal tones quickly wherever you are on the fretboard. You can also clearly see how full chords are formed.

    Learn your scales. Can't help but learn the fretboard if you do this.

    Of course, you can just bear down and learn each note. This isn't easy, but it isn't beyond a decent effort.
  • Does living in the mountains present issues for the guitars?
    Yes. Very, very dry up here. This surprises quite a few people, as there is always snow through 6 or months and then afternoon thunderstorms during the abbreviated warm weather months but the moisture just evaporates or runs down hill as quickly as it comes in. The woods crackle when you walk through.
  • Will there be any material outside the scope of the beginning guitarist?
    Probably not too much. We be what we be.
  • I practice a LOT and am curious if I should I be concerned with sore fingers?
    Yes. Fingertip soreness is part and parcel of the process of learning the guitar. We don't know of any way to avoid this. Certainly would not recommend you push this to the bloody, fingertip stage, but, in general the fingertip soreness will gradually diminish as you develop soft to hard callouses, strength, and muscle memory in your hands and fingers

    You should be concerned if you experience persistent soreness along the sides or base of your fingers. You should dramatically reduce the time you spend with the guitar until you are able to resolve this particular, persistent, type of soreness either through rest and rehabilitation or as a result of a medical doctor's opinion.

    Do NOT risk long term injury nor ignore symptoms that may suggest a serious ligament, muscle, or tendon damage. Your guitar will not forgive you.
  • What happened to all of your content?
    We did not take adequate precautions nor did we follow that heretofore, casually, ignored requirement to properly backup our files. We tried to blame the software but we know we were at fault.

    Sigh!

    Our parents do know of what they speak.

    Yes, there is shame.

    Update: Actually there appears to have a been a hardware glitch and everything was retained. We have elected to proceed with the rebuild and ask for patience as the content is updated and repopulated. Our shame has lessened.
  • What is the goal of ConiferGuitar?
    We hope to provide something of value in your development as a guitar player. This can be as simple as a printable diagram, an unexpected insight into guitar theory, or just something that allows you to have fun with a guitar. We make no pretenses to be anything other than a site for beginning guitarists.

    We hope that you will learn something in at least one of your visits to this site.

    We are learning as we go along.

    We operate from the premise that you are a beginning guitar player. We will continue to approach this site with that in mind.

    We hope you participate in this venture.
  • Why are you a Chicago Cubs fan?
    Generational genetics. There is no choice.
  • How do you calculate the distance between frets?
    We don't, but the good folks at Liutaio Mottola Stringed Instrument Design have a very decent presentation on just that topic.

    They even have a fret spacing calculator on this site, should you have a need to calculate fret spacing.

    Nicely presented with a clear explanation.

    Please visit these good folks at there website here: http://liutaiomottola.com/formulae/fret.htm
  • What is the most fundamental concept associated with understanding the modes?
    Actually there are three, all equally important:

    Learn the Major scale.
    Learn the Major scale.
    Learn the Major scale.

    There are some musicians that argue the following fourth fundamental concept as well, but there has yet to be universal agreement on the need for the fourth.

    Learn the Major scale.
  • What do you think of ComicSans font?
    Well, We're honestly not sure what the fuss is all about.