Beginner Guitar - Course Breakdowns
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The Beginner guitar course includes the following lessons:

Stretton Payne Click For A Lesson Preview

The Tutor - Stretton Payne

Stretton has spent a career working with guitars starting as boy learning to play on a beat-up old classical acoustic guitar. With success playing his own original music in bands up and down the country Stretton crafted his own style of guitar playing. After studying a Mathematic degree in 1997 Stretton went on to create the Stretton Payne guitar brand and designed and specified the range of guitars.


With many years experience of playing, making and teaching guitar, Stretton brings a simple no nonsense course of lessons to Rock Star Academy. Starting with your first 2 chords Stretton gives a demonstration and the guitar tablature so that you can play straight away. He teaches all the common chords, major, minor, seventh and bar chords before moving on to playing full songs and finger picking.

In the beginner course Stretton takes things back to basics with a ‘hands on approach’ to playing guitar. Feeling that it’s important to pick the guitar up and make some noise rather than go through lots of theory, Stretton structures the course so that you are straight into playing chords and working towards your first song.

Course Structure

Getting Started - Getting to know your guitar and how to tune the guitar.

  1. Understanding chord diagrams and finger position, playing your first 2 chords
  2. Playing 2 popular open scales based on your first 2 chords
  3. 3 of the most commonly used chords and a finger gym excersise to help with co-ordination of the fingers
  4. 3 open scales based on the chords you have learnt
  5. Minor chords, how to turn a major into a minor chord and continueing finger excercises
  6. A look at 7th chords with the usual diagrams and video demonstration also more finger gym excersises
  7. Stringing a few chords together to play songs
  8. Harder chords with instruction on the hand position and introducing the Barre (bar) chord
  9. The most popular shape of barre chords, learning the shape and how to use it anywhere on the guitar
  10. Essential barre chord shape using 2 fingers to cover multiple strings and learning the minor barre chord
  11. Playing songs using a mix of the chords you have learnt to get the sound of popular songs
Nigel Jones

The Tutor - Nigel Jones

So I have been playing guitar since I was 12, which is now over 20 years. I'm a qualified guitar teacher with over 10 years experience, a member of the RGT. I have given lessons in schools and colleges across the UK, I have taught 1000s of guitar players in groups and one to one lessons; I've had many students get distinction grades. I'm now bringing my knowledge of guitar and experience of teaching to Rock Star Academy. I hope you enjoy my lessons...


This course is split into two parts, the theory and the practical.

The idea is you get all the theory knowledge you'll need to get on your way; but not so much that you'll be bored and feel lost.

We recommend doing the course in order and reading through everything but... We fully understand that everybody learns guitar in different ways. If you wanted to skip part one of the course and move on with the practical, do it but make sure you read the theory later on. At some point you will wonder why things work and we promise it will make you a better player for understanding a little theory.

It's also worth re-reading the theory a few weeks after first reading, it's sometimes easier to take in a second time.

Course Structure

  1. Understanding guitar tuning
    The Chromatic Order
    Putting it into practice
    Music Theory Naming Notes
    Let's Talk Posture
    Finger Position Exercise
    Reading Standard Musical Notation
    What is Tab and how does it work?
    Theory Conclusion
  1. Major Chords
    Minor Chords
    Sus Chords
    7th Chords
    Chord Patterns
    Simple Melodies


Welcome to the Rock Star Academy Core Skills lessons. In these lessons you have the opportunity to learn many interesting chords, scales, arpeggios, rhythms, and picking patterns.

The Core Skills lessons also explain useful music theory that allows you to understand how chords, scales, and arpeggios are constructed. You will also get to learn how standard music notation and guitar tab work as they are both very valuable tools when learning how to play guitar.

The core skills will help to improve your ability to compose and give you a deeper understanding of how to jam along with other musicians.

Course Structure

  1. Tab and notation differences
  2. Reading tab
  3. Reading standard musical notation
  4. Reading notational rhythm
  5. Notation symbols note duration

    Section 1
  6. Chords
  7. Scales 1
  8. Scales 2
  9. Scales 3
  10. Scales 4
  11. Rhythm And Lead 1
  12. Rhythm And Lead 2
  13. Rhythm And Lead 3
  14. Rhythm And Lead 4

    Section 2
  15. Chords
  16. Scales 1
  17. Scales 2
  18. Rhythm And Lead 1
  19. Rhythm And Lead 2
  20. Rhythm And Lead 3
  21. Rhythm And Lead 4
Click For A Lesson Preview
Chris Cropp Click For A Lesson Preview

The Tutor - Chris Cropp

Chris has a degree in music technology and grade 8 with distinction in guitar. He has a rare natural ability for playing musical instruments and has a special talent for composing music. His impressive knowledge of music theory helps to develop lessons that are logical and progressive. Chris has used all these skills to devise a Rock Star Challenge that will test your skills and improve your playing.


The Rock Star Challenge tests your ability as a guitarist. Work your way through each star, Yellow, Orange, Green, Blue, Brown and Black. When you master the Black Star you have earned Rock Star Status. As you work through each stage you will discover new chords, chord patterns, rhythms, scales, arpeggios, and solos.

At each stage common questions are answered and useful points are explained. Each stage of the challenge gets a little harder until you reach and conquer the Black Star!

Can you achieve Rock Star Status?

Course Structure

  1. Major Chord
    Pentatonic Scale
    Rhythm Challenge 1 chord
    Lead Challenge D Pentatonic
  1. Minor and Major Chords
    1 Octave Open Pentatonic Ascending Scale
    Rhythm Challenge 2 chord
    Lead Challenge G Pentatonic
  1. Barre, Minor and Major Chords
    1 Octave Open Scale
    Rhythm Challenge 3 Chord
    Lead Challenge 3 Chord Picking
  1. Sharpe, Barre, Minor and Major Chords
    2 Octave Fretted Pentatonic Major Scale
    2 Octave Fretted Pentatonic Minor Scale
    Rhythm Challenge 4 chord
    Lead Challenge Major and Minor Pentatonic
  1. Extended Chords
    2 Octave Fretted Forward Scale
    2 Octave Fretted Backwards Scale
    1 Octave Arpeggios
    Rhythm Challenge 6 chord
    Lead Challenge multi Scale
  1. Extended Chord Positions
    2 Octave Fretted Dorian Scale
    2 Octave Fretted Mixolydian Scale
    2 Octave Arpeggio
    Rhythm Challenge 9 chord
    Lead Challenge Dorian and Mixolydian Scales
Course Level Key

To View Other Course Breakdowns, Click The Instruments Below

Guitar Bass Keys Drums Vocals Mandolin Ukulele Music Theory