Video course for novice guitarists. Picture of the author with guitars taken from the intro video for his video guitar lessons course. Links to course itself.

I recently completed my video course for novice guitarists. It is now available on a platform called Gumroad and you can access it via the links on this post. I called it a Masterclass for not quite beginners and wanted to explain why.

My own experience as a child was that it was fairly easy to pick up a few chords and single string riffs but much harder to move on from there. I did some group classes and classical lessons but neither were teaching me what I really wanted to learn. Truth is I didn’t really know what that was or how to look for it. I just knew it wasn’t Andre Segovia or John Denver, great though they were. 

Of course even in the quiet little village I grew up in I’d have had it all at my fingertips had the internet been around back then. But actually that could just as easily have led to complete overwhelm. 

So I decided to create the kind of course that I felt would have been perfect for me back then. The kind of course that would give me flexible foundations rather than pushing me too far in any one genre or style of playing. With 40 years of playing to draw from I had a pretty good idea what that would look like. I’m confident that my video course for novice guitarists bridges that gap between the basics to advanced intermediate playing. I’m also sure that it will do in a far shorter time than it took me. 

Keeping It Simple

Rather than getting too bogged down in the theory side of things I’ve kept it simple. The online learning space is packed with often contradictory explanations of scales, modes and techniques. Videos are presented from studios lined with vintage guitars and amps. These are played by young guys who can play at a million miles per hour. It sometimes reminds of me of the guys who worked in the guitar department of music shops when I was a kid. You’d ask to try a guitar or amp and they’d “make sure it was in tune for you” by ripping through the latest Steve Vai solo. Then they’d before hand it to you to demonstrate your Smoke on The Water on one string…..

But what if you just want to be a better songwriter, join or form a band or just be able to play both rhythm and lead guitar well in a variety of genres in a style of your own? How do you get from strumming your 3 or 4 open chords to that reasonably quickly? 

Video course for novice guitarists. Picture of the author with guitars taken from the intro video for his video guitar lessons course. This is overlaid with thumbnail images of the course videos. Links to course itself.

Hopefully by taking my video course for novice guitarists. With 15 videos, accompanying words and diagrams, the course starts with a little very basic fretboard knowledge that turns four chord shapes into 48. 

The student then learns how tablature (the musical notation for guitar) works. There are loads of tablature sites online where tablature for pretty much every song ever written can be found. I also provide examples of some of my own work which I demonstrate in the videos. 

Into And Out Of The CAGE

Later in the course we return to rhythm guitar with a thorough look at the CAGED system which divides the fretboard into 5 sections related to familiar chord shapes. This is incredibly useful for both ryhythm and lead playing as well as mentally mapping the fretboard.  Before that however it’s time to learn some foundational lead guitar playing.

From my experience there is no better place to start that than with the iconic blues scale – the basis of all blues, rock and guitar pop. Its an easy to learn scale that sounds good from get go. Its also, like everything on a guitar, a moveable feast so works with the basic theory already learned. The downloadable diagrams show all of the neck positions the scale can be played in. 

There follows a series of 7 videos explaining the various lead guitar techniques that are used in soloing. By the end of this section the student is familiar with the minor and major blues scale. They’ll also be practicing picking, sliding, bending and hammering on/pulling off notes and hopefully making some inspiring melodies. 

The video course ends with a couple of lessons on linking scales and chord shapes together with  runs that can be played in any key.  

I genuinely feel that this is a great little course and exactly what I would have loved when I was a novice guitarist there is an important caveat. Practice is crucial. I have stressed that its essential to practice each section before moving on. Of course the benefit of online and video learning is that you can rewind and go over things multiple times. Obviously you can’t do that with face to face lessons in quite the same way.  


I'm Dave Menzies a digital entrepreneur, photographer and guitarist. I live on the Argyll coast of Scotland. My partner and I write, record and produce our own music and videos in our home studio. I love to help individuals discover the lifestyle freedom offered by the digital world and guitarists to develop their own style.