Skill Levels Defined

Here you will find the skill levels used on the site and the techniques you should be familiar with for each one.

Complete Beginner

This level is for students who have no idea what to do with a guitar. There are currently no video lessons on the site for this skill level but there is my Beginner Guitar Ebook.

Beginner

Most players who have been playing for a year or two but have not studied diligently will fall into this category. Although you could also fall into this category if you’ve been playing for some time as well.

This skill level assumes that you understand the following techniques.

  • Holding the guitar and a pick
  • You can strum some basic open chords
  • You know a pentatonic scale or two and can play one without messing up
  • You know about bending, sliding, hammer ons and pull offs, and vibrato but cannot execute them very well

Beginner/Intermediate

This skill level assumes that you understand everything mentioned in the Beginner Level and the following techniques.

  • You  know some of the Major and Minor Pentatonic scales but are not confident with all positions
  • You are comfortable with some bending, vibrato, and raking styles but still struggle executing them
  • You have the 12 bar blues down pretty well but sometimes forget where you are at when improvising.
  • You can play a simple blues rhythm using some barre chords
  • You can improvise a simple solo using the concepts taught in the Blues Mini Course and Blues Guitar Method 1 over a 12 bar blues.

Intermediate

This skill level assumes that you understand everything mentioned in the Beginner, Beginner/Intermediate Levels, and the following techniques.

Although you may understand all of the techniques mentioned in the other skill levels above, you might not have a full grasp on the all of the ways you can use them or improvise with them.

  • You may now start to understand how to use Intervals in your improvising
  • You can pick out the key of some blues songs but still have trouble with this
  • You know the chords contained in the major scale
  • You know all of the Major and Minor Pentatonic scales
  • You can move scales and patterns easily to different keys
  • You are getting better at the different types of vibrato, bending, and raking styles
  • You understand the basics of the chord embellishment styles
  • You have memorized all of the blues progressions taught in Blues Rhythm 1 and can play through them using barre chords containing Major, Minor, Dominant 7th, 9th, and Diminished 7th chords

Players at the Intermediate level usually can play some improvised blues solos, but have not mastered the ability to feel totally comfortable when improvising using lots of different concepts and techniques yet as taught in Blues Guitar Method 2.

Intermediate/Advanced

This skill level assumes that you understand everything mentioned in the Beginner, Beginner/Intermediate, Intermediate Levels, and the following techniques.

  • You are comfortable with playing Major and Minor Pentatonic, Blues Scales, and all of the Modes derived from the Major Scale using different tempos with a Metronome
  • You are confident with different styles of vibrato, bending, raking, sliding, hammer ons and pull offs but have trouble executing them sometimes and staying in rhythm
  • Your Phrasing is getting better but there is still more you need to work on
  • You can pick out the key of most blues songs pretty quickly
  • You know the intervals contained in Major, Minor, Major 7th, Minor 7th, Dominant 7th, 9th, and Diminished chords

Advanced

This skill level assumes that you understand everything mentioned in the Beginner, Beginner/Intermediate, Intermediate, Intermediate/Advanced Levels, and the following techniques

  • You understand intervals and how to use them over different chords to improvise blues solos
  • You understand all of the techniques needed to play solos such as vibrato, bending, raking, down/up stroke picking, modes, diatonic theory, and barre chords
  • You can identify the key, chords, and scales used for almost any tune you listen to

Lessons in this skill level focus on broadening the student’s vocabulary and styles of blues licks that can be used when improvising solos solos over a variety of blues chord progressions.