Learning to Play the Guitar: Week 2

Last week, I noted the progress I made on learning the basics and a number of challenges I experienced in my first week of learning. This week seems to be on a better track now that I have resolved a few of the problems I was experiencing. I mentioned in my last post that I was able to overcome my inability to tune the guitar by using a piece of software. I think the guitar sounds better. I found some resources to support my troubles with holding the guitar and pressing on the strings. The solution also helped solve the challenge of my worries about practicing at a late hour of night. The recommendations I found after searching forums were either to change the strings (not an option as the guitar is borrowed) or to practice stretching exercises using the guitar but not worrying about strumming the strings. This helped immensely. I am finally getting better at pressing the strings and using my fingers. It was also recommended to not worry about playing the strings at the top of neck. I’m still far away from being able to play with any proficiency, but I feel like I’m making progress after a frustrating first week.

Videos Completed
I am mainly using a series of videos I found on YouTube’s Howcast channel that takes a learner from the basics to actually playing a song. I also found another resources of finger stretching exercises was the best in terms of my particular needs.

  • Parts of an Acoustic Guitar (View Video)
  • How to Hold a Guitar (View Video)
  • How to Hold a Guitar Pick (View Video)
  • How to Pick a Guitar String (View Video)
  • Names of the Guitar Strings (View Video)
  • What are the Frets on a Guitar? (View Video)
  • How to Play on the Guitar Frets (View Video)
  • How to Tune an Acoustic Guitar (View Video) – He explains it well, but I was unable to do it without using a software program that could accurately judge the sound.
  • How to Play the Chromatic Scale on Guitar (View Video)
  • Finger Stretching Exercises (View Video)

I’m hoping to be able to move on to the video Whole Steps and Half Steps on Guitar by the end of the week. Hopefully, it will not be too much longer after that and I’ll be able to play the song I picked, “1, 2, 3, 4” by the Plain White Tees. I’m still not sure if I will be able to play it well by the end of this, but I’m going to try.

The only challenge I couldn’t make progress on this week was terrorizing my dog. She is still freaked out by the guitar even when I’m not playing. I think this may be one challenge that can’t be fixed.

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