a quick guide
GETTING STARTED
THE GUITAR
A QUICK GUIDE
All you need to know about this amazing instrument
ELECTRIC GUITAR & AMPLIFIER
If you want to play electric guitar you should first plug it into an
amplifier (amp). You could play the guitar ‘unplugged’, but it would
be too quiet to hear properly. Here are all the parts of the guitar
and amp that you need to know about…
PICKUPS
The pickups have
magnets inside that sense
the strings’ vibrations. These
smart devices then turn the
vibrations into a signal that
can be amplified (made
loud) by an amplifier.
FRET
BOARD
This is the area on
the front of the neck
where you place
your fingertips.
BRIDGE
The strings are fixed at
the body end of the guitar by
the bridge. There are two main
types: hard-tail and tremolo. A
hard-tail bridge keeps the strings
fixed against the body, whereas a
tremolo bridge lets you raise and
lower the pitch of the strings
with a tremolo bar.
JACK
PLUG
Plug a cable in here
then plug the other
end into your
amp.
6
LET’S ROCK
VOLUME
CONTROL
TONE
CONTROLS
Turn these clockwise
(from 0 to 10) to increase
the brightness of your
guitar’s sound.
Turn this clockwise
(from 0 to 10) to
increase the volume
of your guitar.
TUNING
PEGS
STRINGS
Turn these to get your strings in
tune. The best way to tune your
guitar is with an electronic tuner,
or if you don’t have one of
these you could ask your
teacher for some help.
The guitar’s sound starts
here. When you pluck a
string it vibrates, making a
note. How high or low the
note sounds (its pitch)
depends on where you
press down on the
string.
FRETS
Frets divide
each string into
separate notes.
FRET
MARKERS
You can use these to quickly
work out which fret is which.
The following frets are usually
marked: 3rd, 5th, 7th, 9th,
12th, 15th, 17th, 19th
and 21st.
ACOUSTIC
GUITAR
NECK
The strings are stretched
across the length of the
neck, which is shaped so you
can place your fingers and
thumb around it and
then play notes.
STRAP
PINS
Acoustic guitars have bigger
bodies than electric guitars.
The body is hollow rather
than made of one solid piece
of wood. This makes the
sound much louder.
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VOLUME
& GAIN
Use the volume knob
(sometimes labelled ‘master’) to
increase the overall volume. Some
amps will have a second control
marked ‘gain’. Turning this up
will add a crunchy sound to
your guitar’s tone.
ps
your amp.
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2
1 LARGE BODY
Attach a strap to these
and you will be able to
stand up while playing
your guitar.
a
ign
s
a
Unlike the electric guitar,
the acoustic guitar sounds
loud enough on its own, so
you shouldn’t need an amp.
These are the bits you
should know about…
2 SOUNDHOLE
This hole on the top of the body
1
works a bit like a loudspeaker.
It sends the sound –
amplified by the acoustic
guitar’s large hollow body –
out of the body and into the
air where it can be heard.
TONE
CONTROLS
These are usually ‘bass’, ‘middle’
and ‘treble’. Adding more bass
makes your guitar sound warmer and
fatter. Treble is the opposite: it makes
your guitar sound bright and sparkly.
Middle is between bass and treble. It’s
hard to describe tone in words, so
make sure you play with all of these
controls and hear for yourself
once you’re plugged into
your amp!
LET’S ROCK
7
PIECES
ROCK
‘ROCK CITY’
q = 90
#4
& 4 œ
Rock
N.C.
T
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42
LET’S ROCK
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PIECES
INDIE
‘PARKA LIFE’
q = 100
#4 ˙
& 4 ˙˙
Indie
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46
LET’S ROCK
Œ
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