Learn How To Play Guitar With These Free Lessons!


Learn How To Play Guitar With These Free Lessons!

  • Chords, strumming and rhythm
  • How to find your way around the fretboard
  • How to use scales and riffs
  • Improvising and soloing lessons

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Do You Want To Learn How To Play Guitar?

Or maybe you’ve already played for years – decades even! – but now you’ve picked up the guitar again with fresh determination and you really want to clear up some questions that you’ve had for a long time, and most importantly, take your guitar playing to a whole new level, farther than you’ve ever been before?

If so, welcome, because you’re in the right place. My name is Jonathan Boettcher, and I’ve helped thousands of guitar players improve their playing.

Why My Method Works

Many guitar players have learned to play with the “monkey-see, monkey-do” method, where essentially they’re copying what others play, without any real understanding, and without gaining the ability to apply those skills creatively for themselves. My teaching method is the reverse – first giving you understanding of what is happening on the guitar, and then learning how to apply it. As such, hundreds of guitar players have written me with stories of their progress.

How To Use This Site

At PlayGuitar.com we have many free guitar lessons where you can learn how to play guitar without dropping a red cent. I encourage you to take advantage of these – the best way is by signing up for my newsletter at the top of this page, where you will get one lesson per week. However, if you really want to accelerate your guitar playing faster than a short lesson once per week can manage, I highly recommend checking out my guitar courses.

100% Satisfaction Guarantee

Our No Weasel Clauses Satisfaction Guarantee makes trying our guitar lessons a no-brainer! If you’re not happy with the lesson for any reason, let us know, and we’ll give you a full refund. Guaranteed.

  • Recent Guitar Lessons

    I came across this guitar lesson from Joe Bonamassa recently, and as I was watching, I realized that a lot of the movements he really loves are based on thirds and inverted thirds! He doesn't call them inverted thirds, but he should, I guess! An inverted third is simple a normal third turned upside down. Say for instance, G to B is a major third, right? Well, an inverted third would use those same notes, but instead of G being the lowest note, B would be the lowest note instead. Checkout this lesson, and try to figure out what he's doing here. Even if you can't play as fast as Joe can, if you can figure out the principles of what he's doing, you can apply that to your own playing at your own pace. I should mention that while I've applied them differently than Joe has, I covered the topic of thirds and inverted thirds in quite a bit…
    A lot of guitar players treat strumming and picking as separate skills, and rarely allow the two to meet... which is a shame, because they ARE separate skills, but once combined, they allow access to so much more than either skill could access individually. httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tt8-SFj7h6E Watch on Youtube In today's guitar lesson, we're going to look at one of the examples out of my Dynamic Rhythm Guitar course from the section on Picking, and it is one that begins to mix strumming and picking together into a single pattern. The "strumming" that we're doing here is only on two strings - the first and second strings - and that alone is a good place to start practicing for a lot of you strummers: precision strumming! Can you selectively strum any two or three strings that you want? If not, start practicing, because you'll need that ability when you start merging your strumming with your picking. The main thing to note…
    If you want to make your rhythm guitar playing really sound interesting, let's face it: sooner or later you're going to have to begin using single note lines. Strumming can take you a long ways, if you're clever, but it can only take you so far. httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qgn2IzLGAFo Watch on Youtube Single note lines need not be complicated either - in fact, simply playing through the notes in a G major chord one at a time is a single note line. Rather than strumming all the notes in the chord simultaneously, you're playing them individually... as an arpeggio. Well, in this lesson we're going to take a brief look at one of the most basic picking patterns you can play on guitar, which happens to be a great one to get started with. The R indicates the root note of the chord, and the larger numbers indicate which string number to play. Remember that the strings are numbered from highest in…
    Okay - QUICK - before anybody's eyes glaze over... an inverted third is simply another way for saying "this sounds awesome!" in musical geek-speak. I know that sometimes throwing around lingo like this shuts some people down, but it is my firm belief that understanding what we play makes us better players. But never fear, we're not going into the theory angle today, we're just learning a riff. In the actual course, I do explain this stuff in much greater detail, and you'll learn how to use it in context too, but for today, I just wanted to give you a sample riff pulled straight out of the Dynamic Rhythm Guitar course. Check it out: httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LfaH9KJjr3s Learn More About Dynamic Rhythm Guitar Questions or comments? Let me know below!
    Here's a fun little trick you can use to add some additional character to your chord progressions - add some drone notes. What do I mean by that? Simply adding a note that remains constant throughout each chord change. Kind of like how a bagpipe always has that drone going on underneath the melody. Oops, did I mention bagpipes and guitars in the same thought? Yikes! :) Actually, side story - I once heard the bagpipes played at Canada's Parliament buildings, accompanied by some distorted electric guitars, and it sounded extremely cool. Okay... moving on past the bagpipes! We're going to be using these chords: Em, G, D and A. However, we're going to keep the notes on the first and second strings constant: 1st string open, and 2nd string on the 3rd fret. Check it out: httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UO6gnjrU-vU Watch on Youtube The "D Thing" lesson that I referenced in the lesson can be found here: The D Thing Click here…
    Here's another guitar lesson, brought to you from the beautiful outdoors in British Columbia. Today I wanted to take a look at a strumming technique that can really help add some dynamics to your guitar playing. The heart of this technique is to simply be selective in what strings you strum... don't feel like you always have to strum all the strings at the same time! The "chug" part of this comes from strumming the lowest two or three strings in your chord. This is going to form the main part of your rhythm, but as soon as we add in the "zing" bit (a full strum), it really brightens up the sound spectrum, gives a bit of pop and sizzle. And then you're right back into the chug, and the listener is left waiting for the next zing to pop out... Alright, here's the lesson - let me know what you think in the comments below! Oh yeah -…
    Well it's been a little while since I shot a lesson for you guys, so this time I thought I'd at least change up the background a bit! Today we're going to learn a cool chord progression: Em G D A, and a couple licks. The first lick is pretty simple - it's just straight up through the E pentatonic minor scale. Here's some basic tab, for those who need it - feel free to change up the feel from what's written. The second riff is marked out a bit in the video itself. Bonus points to anyone who can figure out the location where this video was shot, in the comments! Alright, here's the video, enjoy... if you watch to the very end you'll see a special guest appearance. :) httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBd8YeQhTdM Watch on Youtube
  • Latest Blog Posts

    Well, here we are on a guitar-oriented site, and I'm giving you a piano player to watch! What's up with that? The thing is, as musicians, there's an awful lot we can learn from other musicians, even ones who play different instruments than we do - if we're looking for it! Sure, there are guitar players who have good dynamics and a great sense of timing and rhythm, and no doubt we'll look at some of those too, another day, but today I wanted to actually point you at a piano player in order to get you thinking outside the box a little bit. I've heard so many great guitar players say they stole a lick from a piano player, or a trumpet player, or a saxophone player, or whatever. I've even heard them claim to steal tricks from drummers! It takes a bit of conscious effort to develop a mindset that watches other instruments for ways to improve our…
    I'm curious - the "industry bigwigs" like Apple and other companies are betting that the DVD has basically had it. But judging from my own sales, a lot of people still appreciate being able to purchase a physical DVD. I've always offered DVDs, plus a pure download option, which works very well for people who have good computers, fast internet access, and want to save a few dollars. I'm considering a third option now, and I'd really appreciate your opinion. My new course is going to be about a 25 GIGABYTE download, broken up, of course, in multiple chunks, but nevertheless, this is indeed a HUGE chunk of bandwidth for the average home internet account. I'm considering offering the course on a 32GB USB stick. You'd get all the course videos in 720p high definition (DVDs are standard definition, which is poor quality by comparison). Many TV's these days can handle USB sticks directly, and of course, it would work…
    What inspires you to play guitar? Where do you get your ideas from? Do you just play... or do you try to make your playing sound like something, or perhaps sound like you imagine something would sound like... if it had sound. (!!!) Terje Rypdal is inspired by the mountains of Norway, what inspires you? The comments section is open, I'd love to hear your thoughts on this!
    I'm working on a new course, and part of the course deals with scales. I think it is helpful to see some form of a diagram on screen at the same time as the scale is being demonstrated on the video, but I can't decide which way to orient the diagram! That's where YOU come in! At the end of the day, this is all about how I can help you learn to play guitar, so I'm just asking a simple question today: which of the two pictures below is most intuitive for you to understand? [hr] LEFT ORIENTATION (Diagram shows the nut on the left, how right-handed players would normally approach the fretboard): [caption id="attachment_3722" align="aligncenter" width="599"] Left Orientation[/caption] [hr] RIGHT ORIENTATION (Diagram shows the nut on the right, in line with how the guitar is shown in the video so the pattern moves in the same direction as the fingers in the video are going): [caption id="attachment_3710" align="aligncenter"…
    Ever wonder who the richest guitar players are? Wonder no more, my friend - here they are, from "poorest" to richest. [caption id="attachment_3598" align="alignleft" width="150"] Photo by David Shankbone[/caption] David Bowie (Approx. Net Worth $150M) A man of many talents, Bowie is one of the most eccentric, iconic and influential figures in rock and roll. The release of The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars with it's singles, Starman and Ziggy Stardust, cemented Bowie's place in music history. Bowie remains a presence in the music world as a composer, producer and performer.     [caption id="attachment_3603" align="alignright" width="150"] Photo by Yummifruitbat[/caption] Eric Clapton (Approx. Net Worth $200M) Now a guitar legend, Clapton rose to fame as the guitarist for the 1960s rock band Cream. In 1970 Clapton would earn his place in music history with the release of the legendary song "Layla" with his band Derek and the Dominoes. For years after he would battle…