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27 Kirk Hammett Kirk Lee Hammett is the lead guitarist and songwriter for the heavy metal band Metallica and has been a member of the band since 1983. Before joining Metallica he formed and named the band Exodus.
Because of the Internet, storefront businesses are at Defcon One. It’s become nearly impossible to find that proverbial “diamond in the rough” specialty store. Only this diamond isn’t in the rough, it…’s in Worth, Illinois. Player’s has that vintage feel to it–a visual taste of rarity–that for the most part, doesn’t exist anymore; save for the few varied businesses that have withstood this tidal wave of internet commerce.
Open-position: The following figure shows the most common open-position power chords — E5, A5, and D5. These chords are merely the two or three lowest notes of the simple open-position E, A, and D chords.
Whether you’re 16 or 60, one of these beautiful guitars will appeal to your taste, style, and budget, and will serve you well for years to come. Stay with us after the chart for a full guide on electric guitars and how to find the best one for you. So here is the list with the best electric guitars for beginners:
I want to learn jazz guitar, and I’m an absolute beginner. Is there a beginner book for jazz guitar? Every jazz guitar book I’ve found already assumes I’m an intermediate-level player or better. Thank you.
ON! The Beginnings of Electric Sound Generation – an exhibit at the Museum of Making Music, National Association of Music Merchants, Carlsbad, CA – some of the earliest electric guitars and their history, from the collection of Lynn Wheelwright and others
Avoid the thin acoustics that look like electrics. They usually don’t sound good either acoustically or plugged in. This includes Fender’s ‘Telecoustic’ (I otherwise recommend Fender). I’m not really a big fan of any guitars made of anything other than wood either—none of that carbon stuff—just keep it simple.
I listen to so many different kinds of music, my playlists are kind of nuts with classical followed by Steve Morse, then some country song. Listen and watch Keith Richards in that Stones documentary, “Return to Hyde Park”.
An electric guitar with a folding neck called the “Foldaxe” was designed and built for Chet Atkins by Roger C. Field.[20] Steinberger guitars developed a line of exotic, carbon fiber instruments without headstocks, with tuning done on the bridge instead.
Popular music typically uses the electric guitar in two roles: as a rhythm guitar to provide the basic chord progression and rhythm, and a lead guitar that plays melody lines, melodic instrumental fill passages, and solos. In some bands with two guitarists, both may play in tandem, and trade off rhythm and lead roles. In bands with a single guitarist, the guitarist may switch between these roles, playing chords to accompany the singer’s lyrics, and a solo.
I started playing guitar at the age of 9, but it took another 6 years before I started listening and learning the songs of Joe Satriani, John Frusciante, Scott Henderson, Jimi Hendrix, Dimebag Darrel, Marty Friedman, Slash and Frank Gambale to name a few.
Called the “California Series,” they aren’t going to be for everybody. The quick take here is that these are acoustics for electric players — and very much intended to deliver a visual punch when played live.
The colors are bold, and while the designs of the guitars’ bodies aren’t radical, the necks are a bit of a departure and the headstocks could have been taken from a Stratocaster. (Fender has done this before — and there’s currently one acoustic, the Sonoran, in its range that evokes the look of the company’s electrics.)
Generally speaking, you can apply the first ‘filter’ to your search by segmenting things according to one of three main variables; price, look and sound. The price of the guitar is perhaps the most limiting factor; we’re sure everyone would plump for a top of the range Gibson or Fender but, as you’ll find out, the flagship guitars from these guys run into four figures. You could quite easily pick up a decent second hand car for the same price as a Gibson Les Paul so, if you’re at the start of your playing career, it may be wiser to set your sights a bit lower. Don’t forget your dreams though; every guitarist has what they’d call a ‘perfect’ guitar, the one which they’d appropriate in the event of a significant lottery win. Never forget that guitar, and use the thought of it to drive you on through those first few years learning monotonous scales and chords. Trust us, it’s worth it. The feeling you get when you finally purchase your long-time dream guitar, and have the playing chops to match, is really something else.
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This Hal Leonard guitar book is actually a series of 3 books, each around 50 pages, and it comes with 3 supplemental CDs which you can refer to during the chapters. I would recommend this book to younger students (under 20). It is ultra simplistic, which can be nice in some instances, but a bit boring in others.
There are even boards now for each specific instrument, so it’s easy to get the advice you need. They are not solely aimed at beginners, but there is lots of advice from experienced players and I’m sure you’ll get plenty of advice here from other GAS sufferers 🙂
Here we have another awesome guitar from Epiphone, based on the 1967 version of the iconic Gibson SG. This ‘67 SG has the authentic asymmetrical double-cutaway shape you’d expect, with a mahogany body and a SlimTaper D-shaped bolt-on mahogany neck, with rosewood fretboard and 22 frets. It looks great, and feels comfortable and well-balanced to hold. The G-310, as we explain in our full review, is fitted with two Epiphone open-coil alnico humbuckers at the bridge and neck, which deliver plenty of warmth and tone to deal with both classic and modern styles. It also features LockTone tuners and a tune-o-matic bridge, with stopbar tailpiece, for good tuning stability. In all, it’s a great modern version of a true classic.
Play a lot of different guitars before buying. Even if you don’t know how to play, hold it and see how it feels. Examine the construction and finish for any scratches, gaps, blemishes or other problems. Be sure you’re playing with the amplifier that will be sold with the guitar. GuitarsForBeginners.com outlines things to consider when buying a guitar[5] and Musician’sFriend.com offers an electric guitar buying guide[6] .
Although it’s a minor issue when choosing your first guitar, the tone and sustain that the guitar can produce relies on the quality of the material it’s made from. The most used tonewoods in the budget range are basswood, poplar, alder, and paulownia, while more expensive guitars can be made from pine, mahogany, and swamp ash. This is just a rough rule though – these days you will find mahogany in budget guitars and basswood in premium models. They all have different tonal qualities – for example, mahogany typically offers a warmer sound, swamp ash is brighter, while basswood and alder are well-balanced.
We’ve all been there, and it’s actually pretty easy to fix once you know how. The reason we hit those walls in our playing or get bored with what we’re currently doing is that we start falling into set patterns with our playing (pentatonic scale over and over again, anyone?). Whatever we’re playing starts to feel stale and derivative because we’ve gone over it so many times, and it can end up being a pretty frustrating experience.
Firstly, we advise sticking with a brand name you can trust. We’ve established that there’s nothing particularly premium about the guitars on offer at $200, but by sticking with Fender, Ibanez, Yamaha, Epiphone, Oscar Schmidt and the others on this list, you at least guarantee a guitar from a renown guitar manufacturer with some history, instead of something thrown together by a company who don’t specialise in instruments.
On guitar, the note patterns are a little more complex because each string has a different arrangement of notes. For a beginner, it is much more difficult to know which string to use when the pitch goes higher or lower. Unlike a piano, the guitar needs to be tuned before you play, which is another learning curve students must conquer quickly. Otherwise, they will only be able to tune once a week when they see their guitar teacher.
TheGuitarLesson.com, created by Tom Fontana, is dedicated to bringing the highest quality guitar tutorials to beginner guitarists. Through creating fun and engaging guitar lessons, we aim to spread our love of the guitar to as many new players as possible.
If you do want an amplifier, there is a vast array of models available with all kinds of fancy stuff built in, effects, digital modelling, even backing tracks! It really depends on your budget. It’s very likely that a new amplifier will be your first major purchase if you stick with it (they make a bigger difference to your sound than the guitar does, believe it or not!) so my advice is to start small and simple, learn a bit, see where it is taking you and you will have a better idea of what to spend your hard-earned cash on. There’s more about amps in lesson BC-103.
As we mentioned before, the first mass-produced solid body electric guitar was introduced in the early ‘50s as a way for guitar players to avoid getting that unwanted feedback that amplified hollow body electric guitars were infamous for. Today, there are countless solid body guitars to accommodate any type of player and price range—from beginner guitar players to seasoned pros playing genres spanning hard rock, country, blues, heavy metal, jazz, and more! Some of the most popular solid body electric guitars include the Fender Telecaster, the Fender Stratocaster, the Gibson Les Paul, the Gibson SG, the Ibanez RG, and the ESP Eclipse.
In 2002, Gibson announced the first digital guitar, which performs analog-to-digital conversion internally. The resulting digital signal is delivered over a standard Ethernet cable, eliminating cable-induced line noise. The guitar also provides independent signal processing for each individual string. In 2003, modelling amplifier maker Line 6 introduced the Variax guitar. It differs in some fundamental ways from conventional solid-body electrics. It has on-board electronics capable of modelling the sound of a variety of unique guitars and some other stringed instruments. At one time, some models featured piezoelectric pickups instead of the conventional electromagnetic pickups.
Electric guitar necks vary in composition and shape. The primary metric of guitar necks is the scale length, which is the vibrating length of the strings from nut to bridge. A typical Fender guitar uses a 25.5-inch scale length, while Gibson uses a 24.75-inch scale length in their Les Paul. While the scale length of the Les Paul is often described as 24.75 inches, it has varied through the years by as much as a half inch.[citation needed]
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Ayub Bachchu (AB) from Bangladesh is a great guitarist from Bangladesh. He is playing for 26+ years. He is a versatile guitarist. He should be listed among 150. search on you tube. you will be amazed. sure…….
An excerpt: “Quite a few of the artists I’ve worked with have told me that my own personal style might be described as flashy. In this book, we will definitely cover the hotter aspects of playing, not only regarding lead styles, but rhythm techniques, too. What I’ve found after years of experience in the studio and onstage with many different types of artists is that a guitarist can modify his playing and adapt it to the requirements of the particular situation while still revealing his own distinctive musical personality.”
This book comes from the former editor of Guitar One magazine who has been playing since he was 14 years old, so he has a reputation of knowing a his way around a guitar neck AND knowing how to write. Let’s face it, when you are trying to learn guitar through reading a book, the author’s ability to write and communicate is crucial. Anyway, this book delivers a “workout program” for your fingers, giving you a technique driven approach to learning the guitar and actually improving in record time. The exercises are designed to help with dexterity and accuracy.
The sound of a guitar can not only be adapted by electronic sound effects but is also heavily affected by various new techniques developed or becoming possible in combination with electric amplification. This is called extended technique.
After reading through Teach Yourself to Play Guitar, my opinion is that if you are giving a guitar as a gift to someone, this might be an OK book to accompany that. If you wanted to spend a bit more, or are looking for a book for yourself, I would go with the 2nd book reviewed below, the Guitar for Dummies book. It has online video and audio demos, and hearing what you should be playing helps when learning music… 😉

If you’re looking for a beginners axe with a little attitude, the Ibanez GRX20 should be one of the top choices on your list. The poplar body has a deep double-cutaway RG-style shape, with two finishes to choose from (Jewel Blue or Black Night). It also features a good quality bolt-on maple neck that’s fast enough for beginners, with a rosewood fretboard and 22 medium frets. Two Ibanez-designed Infinity humbuckers at the neck and bridge positions give this entry-level offering plenty of bite for distorted tones, but works just as well for softer, cleaner numbers. Considering how affordable the guitar is, the overall feel and sound you get is a big surprise – as we mention in the full GRX20 review.
One of the most impressive guitars on this list when it comes to style is this C-1 SGR from Schecter – a respected brand in the world of rock and metal. With a design that’s heavily influenced by their premium C1 models, this affordable alternative features a solid basswood body that’s arched and contoured for great comfort, allowing unhindered access to the 24-fret maple neck. Some of the appointments – such as the custom 12th fret inlay and black chrome hardware – set this model apart from so many run-of-the-mill entry-level electric guitars. Electronics are hard to complain about, with two decent humbuckers and simple controls. Throw in a cool Schecter bag and you have one outstanding cheap guitar! More details? Check out the full review!
If you’re just getting started, you’ll definitely find these posts helpful: “5 Tips for Learning Guitar Chords” and “10 Tips to Learn Good Guitar Technique from the Start”. These tips will streamline your path to becoming a great guitar player.
The > symbol is called an accent. It tells you to play those notes a little louder than the others. This forms a rhythmic pattern that gives a song a certain flavor, such as a Latin flavor, a Bo Diddley flavor, a polka flavor, or even a tutti-frutti flavor.
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