Anonymous asked in Arts & HumanitiesPerforming Arts · 1 decade ago

I really need help with the guitar, please?

Hey so I am 12 and learning how to play the guitar. I am teaching myself but plan to take classes in two weeks or three. Right now I know how to play the Chords C,A,G,D,E. I learnt these yesterday. I know there is ALOT I am missing on, can you tell me what other chords do I need to know?

Plus, i thought about starting with really simple songs like ( twinkle twinkle haha lame i know) lol but there is one problem, I just cant switch chords. Its takes me too much time to figure out the chords and in the end I mess it up. What can i do to prevent this problem?

Plus, I am not getting any calluses either even though I play about 30mins - 1 hour a day.. Why is this so? And how long did it take you to learn ALL of this?

Sorry for making it SOOOO detailed but the most detailed answer gets 10 points with 5 stars too :P

Thankyou in advance =]

7 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer


    I am also a fairly new guitar player, and I'm not good by any stretch of the imagination. But I can give you a little advice based on my experience so far, which will hopefully help you out a little. :) I'm only 2 years older than you by the way, so we're probably pretty much on the same page.

    Okay, first of all C, A, G, E, and D are all 'major' chords. These are the first ones you should learn and before moving on (I'd suggest 'minor' chords next), it's important you master fingering and learn to switch fingering quickly. You can find the fingerings for most chords you'll need to know here: This is a fantastic website and it'll aid you greatly.

    As for switching between chords, the only thing you can do is practise. I know it's something you've probably heard a billion times before, but seriously, nothing improves your playing like practice. Also, you may find it helpful to learn alternative fingerings for each chords (alternative fingerings are different positions for your fingers which result in the same chord when strummed, e.g. there are several different ways to play A chord, and some of them make switching between A and other chords much easier - check out this video for more information on this: Other than that, practise, practise, practise. It's the only way you'll improve.

    Also, this website is AMAZING on so many levels: This link is for the Beginner's Course, which is incredibly helpful and informative and guides you through the learning process step-by-step.

    As for the songs you're starting out with, it helps more than I can say if you learn a song because you love it rather than because it's easy. I love Guns N' Roses' 'Sweet Child O' Mine', so rather than learn an easy song, I learned this first off. I think had I tried to learn something I don't enjoy listening to, I would've gotten bored and given up, so I STRONGLY recommend learning a much-loved song to begin with, even if it's not the easiest song in the world.

    Don't worry about calluses! If your fingers don't hurt, then the skin is probably tough enough already, but if they do hurt, then the calluses are probably still developing. They don't just spring up; in my experience, they can take anything from a day or two to a few weeks to begin to develop depending on your skin - mine still aren't properly developed and it's been over a month!

    I've only recently started learning chords, because I started out with learning a couple of songs and trying to perfect moving my fingers at a satisfying speed. So far, I've found it helpful to learn a chord or two a day and concentrate on perfecting that before moving onto the next. That way, I don't struggle to remember the fingering and can concentrate on moving my fingers quickly enough to make the transition between chords sound fairly smooth.

    I hope my answer was detailed enough for you and made the cut. :) Hope it helps you a little - I've compiled a couple of helpful websites with links below. You can email me if you'd like anymore help ( :)

    Good luck! :)


    • Login to reply the answers
  • 1 decade ago

    First off, I am glad to hear that you will be taking lessons soon, that will help a lot. There are 6 basic open chord shapes, they are A C D E F G. All other chords are variations on these basic shapes. The first thing to do is to learn to switch between 2 chords. I suggest the E and the A chord first. These are two of the easiest chords. The middle fingers (middle and ring) hold the same shape between both chords so move those two fingers first.

    Use a simple down-up strum pattern and play each chord 8 times and then switch. Yes, at first you will get some really crappy sounding strums between the chords while you are trying to change. This is absolutely normal and is to be expected. The key is to NOT STOP STRUMMING! This forces your left hand to make the change faster. Repeat the same process for the chords E minor and A minor. Then try E7 and A7. Next try the chords A minor to C. By learning these easy changes first you are developing strength and coordination.

    The next set of chords to work on will be D to A , D7 to A7, Am to Dm. Than move on to C to F, C to G, D to G. Once you can move easily between these 2 chord combinations then expand into 3 chord changes such as A to D to E and C to F to G. Most basic songs use 3 chords.

    A word about hand strength, If you are right handed, and are learning the guitar that way, then you are placing your left hand on the neck, right? The only problem with this is, our left hand is an IDIOT! Really, it is!

    This is one of the reasons why learning to play is so frustrating! Our left hand is not used to doing any very coordinated tasks. We usually just use it to grab something and affect it with our right hand. You grab a bottle with your left hand and open it with your right etc.. Consequently, our left hand is very uncoordinated.

    You might have noticed that after about 20 minutes of playing your left hand seems to be actually getting DUMBER! This is because your left hand has very little "mechanical memory". After a very short time it has trouble remembering what it just did!. Boy, this can be really frustrating!!

    To counteract this problem simply take a break after about 20-30 minutes and come back to it a while later. Your hand will remember more this way and you will develop callouses faster too.

    A word about callouses; It will take a few weeks to develop basic callouses and a few months for them to get stronger. This is if you practice everyday. It could take twice as long if you don't. That's just how it is.

    Feel free to contact me with any more questions

    Source(s): G.I.T. graduate 30+ years playing/teaching
    • Login to reply the answers
  • 1 decade ago

    I started at 13 with playing 'Blowin in the Wind' in D. It just has three chords. I think you need to play for 6 months with just 3 chords of song you like. And, if you have to play G with just 4 strings, then so be it.

    Although you can 'see' and 'know' a chord instantly, it takes a while for your fingers to get used to going to it. I still have the same problem when I am learning new chords.

    • Login to reply the answers
  • 1 decade ago

    Well this is how i learned....PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE. Over time you will succeed.

    For a beginner, those chords should be fine. As you go on you'll want to learn more.

    As for the calluses, i have none either....i play for about 3 hours a day. Why i have none i have no idea.

    If you stick to practicing every day you should learn all of this in about a month. But its really hard to say because every one learns at a different rate. Good Luck though!

    Source(s): Music Freak
    • Login to reply the answers
  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • 1 decade ago

    Don't worry about the Calluses bro. It'll be there before you know it. there's excercises you can try (like c, Am, D, G) now remember you gotta make sure you can hear every individual string without the fuzziness. and also get that F chord down as much as you can. even if you cant hear it clearly keep going. once you get all that down i'd suggest you find a Flamenco Guitar teacher and electric guitar would be WAAAY easy after that lol

    Source(s): all life experience thanks lol
    • Login to reply the answers
  • 4 years ago

    I play guitar hero a couple years before I pick up the guitar the only thing that helped me with was by coordinations with my fingers and to build some muscle in my hand and that's about it

    • Login to reply the answers
  • 1 decade ago

    These chords are a good start :) I started playing by learning the song time of your life by greenday. Go on ultimate and find some easy chord progressions. As for your chord progressions you just gotta practise, practise, practise i'm afraid :)

    Hope i helped :)

    • Login to reply the answers
Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.