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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Little Book!, 13 Oct 2008
This review is from: Learn to Play Rock Guitar (CD W/ Book & Poster) (Paperback)
I actually bought this book about a month before I even had a guitar, as the guitar I fancied in the shop was second hand, and needed some work done on it. I was absolutely obsessed with this book, and listened to the CD a few times to get accustomed to what the first few examples sound like. Of course, I hadn't the slightest idea what I was looking at, I was just that enthusiastic about learning to play guitar!

The book starts off with a simple introduction, explaining what you are supposed to do with your guitar, reading tablature, tuning etc. This was incredibly helpful to me, as I was unaware about how you make the notes sound. The book said simply to press down on the wood between the metal things on the neck. Job done. I finally knew what the fingers on your left hand had to do. The book goes on to the first lesson, which teaches you root 6 bar chords. Normally this would not be a beginner's first lesson. Usually a beginner will be taught open chords or simple riffs. Of course, I had no clue, so I dove straight in. For a beginner learning bar chords I must say it really did the job. This stuff is supposed to be hard at first, but the book takes it real slow, and explains it very well. I would not advise this book for a beginner, as I must say that open chords are a better way to start out. However, I started from scratch with this book and I turned out ok.

One aspect of the book that I couldn't appreciate more than anything is the way it explains how you should strum certain rhythms. Obviously this is hard for a beginner who has no idea about upstrokes or down strokes or when they should happen. It explains syncopated patterns in such an easy way and gives examples every time something tricky comes about.

The book is almost split straight down the middle. The first half is rhythm, and the second lead. The lead section couldn't start off in a more considerate way if it tried. It simply shows you the first steps you need to take to get used to fretting single notes. I particularly liked the way, like the rhythm section, it provides examples of tricky bits whenever they arise. It proceeds to show you how to hammer on, pull off, slide, bend and vibrato. It immensely adds character to your playing if you feel it sounds a little robotic.

The CD included provides tuning in the first 6 tracks, and each exercise has a backing track included, in case you need to listen a bit more to your own playing along with the bass and drums.

I would definitely recommend this book if you have been playing acoustic guitar and want to switch to electric, it seems to cover all the bases. It definitely helped me, as I started off with this and found (being a 13 year old brain-dead) that it guided me into the wonderful world of guitar playing with incredible ease.
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Learn to Play Rock Guitar (CD W/ Book & Poster)
Learn to Play Rock Guitar (CD W/ Book & Poster) by Brett Duncan (Paperback - 1998)
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