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TChalms

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Glad to see you found Justin Guitar. I really like the organization of his website and his explanations of what to learn, how to proceed and why.

Don't worry about gear yet. You've got a good guitar so that's what counts now. Make sure that your hands learn how to make good tone before you disguise mistakes with overdrive, delay and reverb.
 

NMA

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Don't worry about gear yet. You've got a good guitar so that's what counts now.

Actually, what counts most is a good amp.

I have great guitars...plug them into my little Crate practice amp that was my first amp and those great guitars sound like hell.

I have cheap guitars -- a $119 Squier Bullet Strat -- plug that into my VOX AC30 and that guitar sounds amazing.

It's the amp that counts most.

Which do you think does more for my guitars regardless of cost of guitar?
This:

1647126270578.png

Or this:

1647126387723.png
 

TChalms

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Actually, what counts most is a good amp.
Agreed. My point is that someone who is just learning to play needs to hear their mistakes so they can learn to fix them. The beginning is not the time to get bogged down with peddles and amps. Also, many people who are just learning to play don't have the budget for expensive amps. So again, people who are just learning to play should be spending time practicing rather than shopping for amps. Amps can come later after the tone is in the hands.
 

NMA

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...The beginning is not the time to get bogged down with peddles and amps. Also, many people who are just learning to play don't have the budget for expensive amps. So again, people who are just learning to play should be spending time practicing rather than shopping for amps. Amps can come later....

Yes, you are very right.

That little Crate practice amp above was my first amp. My first amp certainly wasn't a VOX AC30. It is after you feel you can somewhat play that the tone chase begins.

I wish I weren't bitten by the tone chase bug. I did realize early on that the amp, more than the guitar, is the key to the sounds I chase. I learned that the amp is what counts most.
 

Huntroll

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If you get something like this -

Newark NDX-500


You can load in a song, then lock the key its in, then slow it down and figure out every note.

Back when I started playing, all you had was a record player to slow stuff down with.

From the instructions -

Master Tempo: Press this to activate or deactivate Master Tempo, which locks the musical key of the track to its original key (as if it were playing with 0% pitch adjustment). You can then adjust the tempo of the track without affecting its key or pitch
 
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Browning

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Glad to see you found Justin Guitar. I really like the organization of his website and his explanations of what to learn, how to proceed and why.

Don't worry about gear yet. You've got a good guitar so that's what counts now. Make sure that your hands learn how to make good tone before you disguise mistakes with overdrive, delay and reverb.

Thank you, yes just focusing on the beginner basics right now. Not worried about effects or anything else at the moment. I appreciate all of the responses and good information. 👍
 

Col Mustard

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Welcome to ETSG!

I'll say something here that no one else has:

>Get your SG set up by the best luthier you can find or afford.

Expect to pay $80 to $100 for the service. It's worth it.
Epiphone guitars respond really well to setup, and this will enhance
your guitar experience and make it easier to play and make it sound
a lot better.

You've got a lot to concentrate on as a beginner, so get
this essential work done by an expert. Later on you can learn to
set an electric guitar up yourself.

All the advice above seems right on to me, so I won't dispute it
or amplify it. Except this:
>Learn to keep your thumb behind the neck and play
with a really relaxed hand. That way, the size of your hand becomes
unimportant, as does the shape of the neck. Small hand, big hand,
no problem. Thin neck, fat neck, you can play 'em all when your hand
is relaxed and moving freely and your thumb stays behind the neck and acts like a pivot, not a clamp.

Don't take my word for this, observe good players and see for yourself.
 

TheDixiePig

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The Col. is right about the thumb. I developed a bad habit of using my thumb over the neck to mute the e string on a bass. I found this to be a practice I had to learn to abandon to play guitar correctly. When I first got my SG I was strangling the damn thing wondering why my chords were sometimes out of tune. I was using so much grip pressure I was pulling the strings out of tune. Using a soft touch, and keeping my thumb behind the neck has been the most difficult part for me to learn. Too many years spent with bad form. I'll also second keeping it out where it's available to play. Mine hangs on the wall, I take it down and play almost every time I'm near, even if it's just to bang through Blitzkrieg Bop and hang it back up. I've been playing music for 35 years, in my experience you never stop learning.
 

Col Mustard

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the additional advice to go with "learn to keep your thumb behind the neck" is:

TAKE SOME LESSONS FROM THE BEST TEACHER
YOU CAN FIND OR AFFORD

That's the place to spend money and effort... early in your development. Perfect your craft before fussing over gear...by
learning to play songs you care about, and learn from someone who can teach you the nuts and bolts of music while also teaching you
the right hand work, and the left hand work for the style you
want to play.
 

3bolt79

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Yes, you are very right.

That little Crate practice amp above was my first amp. My first amp certainly wasn't a VOX AC30. It is after you feel you can somewhat play that the tone chase begins.

I wish I weren't bitten by the tone chase bug. I did realize early on that the amp, more than the guitar, is the key to the sounds I chase. I learned that the amp is what counts most.

My $299.00 Ibanez sounds great through my Mesa. I haven’t tried it with my new Marshall yet. It sounds great through my Orange Crush 35 RT as well, and that amp is great for beginners because it doesn’t break the bank. It’s about 300 dollars with the optional foot switch. No need for pedals.
 
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Decadent Dan

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I took lessons in the 80’s from a now very famous guitar player. I remember him telling me then not to hang my thumb over the neck. Now if I Google his name, there are thousands of pics of him online. His thumb is hanging over the neck in about half of them.
I just watched a video of him jamming with Peter Frampton and they BOTH had their thumbs hanging.
 
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Go Nigel Go

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The key to any body mechanics is to work with the body to do a given task in the most comfortable and sustainable way. Sometimes hanging the thumb works just fine, and can be used to good effect. It can also be used to change things up in the course of a long show or practice session to give relief from repetitive motion fatigue.There are many cases however where keeping the thumb behind that neck is almost mandatory for many techniques, especially things that require a lot of speed and movement, Hooking the thumb can act as an anchor and slow you down or limit reach and dexterity.

The reason many teachers are so insistent on keeping the thumb behind the neck as opposed to hooked over in a "more comfortable way" has less to do with what you are doing at the time and everything to do with what you will want to do in a few years if you continue as a player. Hooking the thumb is comfortable and natural. Everyone will figure it out and do it. Thumb behind is less natural AT FIRST and requires building some muscles and coordination that many students might never learn if not instructed.

In short, a lot advanced techniques will require the thumb behinds the neck to be used to their full potential, and if you wait until you are ready to start working on those techniques to start building the strength and muscle memory to get that thumb behind the neck, it is really going to impede your progress.

I hook my thumb pretty often, but would always encourage beginner students to play with the thumb behind the neck, even when it was not necessary just to burn in the habits they will need long term. The student will hook their thumb on their own. The teacher's job is to teach, and if I am teaching it would be "thumb behind all the time". You know you aren't actually going to do it all the time, I know it, and I don't even do it all the time myself. I am however equally comfortable thumb behind or hooked, and I might not be as comfortable with the thumb behind if my beginning teachers had not insisted on it so slavishly. Most of the time I use thumb behind just because it works better, but I might not think so if it was an unfamiliar thumb position because I had never learned it early.
 
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