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Introduction to Music Theory for Guitar

Introduction to Music Theory for Guitar
March 16, 2006, 07:00:51 AM
Dmitris Dranidis wrote this excellent guide in 1994, but it has gone offline from its original home on the web. We've reconstructed as much as we can and put a mirror back online here:


This is still the best introductory guide to both guitar and music theory, and a better path to take than first learning guitar and next learning theory. Highly recommended.

Efforts have been made to contact the original author; we'll see if he comes through.



Re: Introduction to Music Theory for Guitar
March 16, 2006, 03:00:50 PM
Both do not have the HTML only files, unfortunately.  If they're on the internet anywhere they're beyond the reach of google.

Re: Introduction to Music Theory for Guitar
March 16, 2006, 10:35:48 PM
Tidbit about scales and chords that might make your life easier (it made mine easier when I figured it out)

When learning music theory, it helps to view a scale as the fundamental basis of everything you're doing (well, unless you're playing metal...but learn the fucking rules before you break them, so you can break them in more spectacular ways). A lot of people learn how to create a chord progression and THEN learn how to play the scale that it fits into. I don't really understand why people are taught about chords first; if you know a scale, you can take the basic image of the scale as it would fit on the fret-board, and instantaneously know whether a chord uses the notes of that scale by mentally fitting the chord shape to the scale pattern. Being able to mentally carve a chord shape out of a scale pattern becomes easy as hell after a while. It quickly became second nature to me...Make sure you learn the names for all the chord shapes you're using, and learn what every note on the fretboard is, and if you can take a newly learned scale and say "Oh, an Am7 would fit here" or "Oh, a diminished chord would fit here..."

Re: Introduction to Music Theory for Guitar
March 23, 2006, 03:02:04 PM
Another text file that is possibly more complete:


Try it now. I had the links pointing to the wrong site. The document above is here:


Any other resources that should be amalgamated with this one?

Do other "guitarists" here use tabs, or do you figure everything out by ear? I'm learning to favor the latter method, even if stumbling through different tunings and distortions makes this not so easy sometimes.

Re: Introduction to Music Theory for Guitar
June 24, 2009, 07:44:06 PM
Good explanation of the circle of fifths:


Open source notation program:



Re: Introduction to Music Theory for Guitar
June 27, 2009, 07:19:17 AM
I recommend taking lessons... at least if you're just starting.

I took lessons for 9 months, learned A-G# on the first six strings, learned how to play lead guitar in time, and THEN concentrating on learning rhythm guitar, chord transitions, barre chords, pentatonic scales (all 5 minor scales... memorized), ETC.

I recommend being able to read music off of tablatures &  traditional music structures(as in playing piano) so as to be able to play a wider variety of music... completely accurate.  Nothing more enjoyable than playing classical music on guitar. 

I just bought a $7 book / DVD from Simon Croft and I've learning more from it than 9 months of lessons (however the last year I've simply taught myself how to play guitar).

It goes...

Guitar > Drugs > Pussy > Family > Friends

I'm sure the order should be reversed, but in my case... it's all about playing guitar and doing fucking drugs while getting some pussy!