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Fawkes
2011-03-03, 05:09 PM
I've recently started taking guitar classes, and I'm always looking for fun, familiar songs to practice with. Does anyone have any recommendations for songs that would be good for beginners to try? I'm still working in the first position, and generally in the keys of C and G. Tabs are easier, but I can read sheet music pretty well if it's in C or G and sticks pretty close to the staff. Thanks!

DeadManSleeping
2011-03-03, 06:42 PM
There are nice and easy songs, but you'll get better faster if you challenge yourself (to a point). Just find songs you like, and learn them! It doesn't matter if it takes a lot of time.

I do personally recommend learning songs by Jonathan Coulton (http://www.jonathancoulton.com/store/downloads/). Most of his songs have rather detailed instructions on how to play them. And they're REALLY fun. Easy songs among his discography include "Ikea", "My Monkey" (a lot easier than it looks, because it's so repetitive), "Skullcrusher Mountain", and "The Future Soon" (except for an odd chord in the verse, and the bridge). Every song of his has at least one really, really odd chord, but those are good for you to get used to.

Also, learning fun songs means that you'll be getting to entertain other people sooner.

Moff Chumley
2011-03-03, 08:01 PM
Mystery Zone by Spoon is a lot of fun to play. And sing. :smallbiggrin:

Fawkes
2011-03-03, 08:07 PM
Huh. I didn't realize JC had guitar tabs up for his songs. Thanks for the tip!

Yeah, I really need to work on my chords. I'm pretty bad at even the basic ones. I'm a bit better at picking, but I need to practice both.

Gwyn chan 'r Gwyll
2011-03-03, 10:25 PM
Huh. I didn't realize JC had guitar tabs up for his songs. Thanks for the tip!

Yeah, I really need to work on my chords. I'm pretty bad at even the basic ones. I'm a bit better at picking, but I need to practice both.

I find the greatest thing a guitar player can have is a basic knowledge in music theory. If you know the different scales and chord types, then the amount of THINGS you can play, and just figure out on your own, develop your own style. It's fun. One of my personal favourites is playing in between minor and whole tone scales: it's just the right mix of sadness and uneasiness, and I've never heard anybody else use that in modern music.

RTGoodman
2011-03-04, 01:17 AM
If you can play G, C, D, Em, A, and Am, all of which are pretty easy, you can play like 90% of all Irish folk tunes and a good deal of bluegrass tunes too. I'm in a fledgling Celtic/American folk band, and pretty much everything we play uses those exclusively. (Or some variation, at least.)

Fawkes
2011-03-04, 01:36 AM
I find the greatest thing a guitar player can have is a basic knowledge in music theory. If you know the different scales and chord types, then the amount of THINGS you can play, and just figure out on your own, develop your own style. It's fun.

Yeah, we're working a lot on chords and scales in class.


If you can play G, C, D, Em, A, and Am, all of which are pretty easy, you can play like 90% of all Irish folk tunes and a good deal of bluegrass tunes too. I'm in a fledgling Celtic/American folk band, and pretty much everything we play uses those exclusively. (Or some variation, at least.)

Do you know of any good resources for tabs/music for those? I usually use Ultimate Guitar archive when looking for specific songs, but I'm not sure that would really work searching by genre.

DeadManSleeping
2011-03-04, 07:46 AM
There are a lot of folk music sites, but since I'm always googling by song title, I can never remember which ones are actually useful. However, songs covered by Gaelic Storm and Great Big Sea and other popular modern folk-ish groups will be on Ultimate Guitar.

Oh, and get yourself a capo. Specifically, a squeeze-on capo. Yes, it costs money. That doesn't matter. You should have one.

grimbold
2011-03-04, 11:10 AM
7 nation army is pretty fun and easy
a lot of nursery rhyme things are in first position
Crazy Train was my first riff
in second position there is whole lotta love which is EXTREMELY easy and EXTREMELY awesome.
Once you learn a few more chords and get better at chord changes zeppelins Tangerine is also pretty easy

ForzaFiori
2011-03-04, 11:40 AM
I personally find it simply amazing how many of the Beatles songs are very easy, and almost all in the first position. Most of them use a basic 4 chord progression too, and once you start to get the (very few) traditional 4 chord combos down, it opens up alot of other songs as well. "Outside", by Staind, is also a great easy song. It's written at capo 1, but sounds just as good if you play it without it (just remember to bump your hand back a fret as well)

Also, "Kryptonite" by 3 Doors Down is good for practicing picking, and is a pretty easy song.

VeisuItaTyhjyys
2011-03-04, 12:02 PM
A little information about your tastes would help; a big thing is practicing music you like, so you can really want to learn it. There's a lot of easy guitar out there in all the genres, so you can almost always find a few good songs that aren't too hard but help practice important skills.

valadil
2011-03-04, 12:44 PM
There are a lot of folk music sites, but since I'm always googling by song title, I can never remember which ones are actually useful. However, songs covered by Gaelic Storm and Great Big Sea and other popular modern folk-ish groups will be on Ultimate Guitar.


GBS is fantastic. I found Flogging Molly to be a bit easier when starting out though. They just kinda fudge it whereas GBS depends on some strumming patterns that can be hard to pick out at first (Demasduit Dream, I'm looking at you).

RTGoodman
2011-03-04, 01:56 PM
Do you know of any good resources for tabs/music for those? I usually use Ultimate Guitar archive when looking for specific songs, but I'm not sure that would really work searching by genre.

The site I use is this one: http://www.traditionalmusic.co.uk/irish-folk-music/irish%20songs/irish-songs.htm

It's generally pretty good, but you might have to transpose some songs if you don't know some of the other chords. (I can't play F very well, so stuff that's in the key of C I transpose to G.)

Some good, relatively easy songs that people generally know or like:

-The Wild Rover
-Whiskey in the Jar
-Back Home in Derry (really nice slow, minor-key ballad)
-All for Me Grog
-Black Velvet Band

A lot of bluegrass music is pretty easy, but it's a different style entirely. (You'll be playing what I've heard called a "bass-chop" pattern instead of strumming basic patterns.) For a more modern version, look at Old Crow Medicine Show's "Wagon Wheel." Basic four-chord pattern: G-D-Em-C G-D-C-C. (Video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1gX1EP6mG-E))