5 Reasons to Learn Guitar Music Theory!

When I first started playing guitar, I had no idea about the benefits of guitar music theory! I was focused on learning tablature and trying to translate this information into playing songs. Being self taught, the combination of forming chords, strumming and singing was challenging enough! However, as I improved as a guitarist, I have found so many wonderful benefits to learning theory and applying it songs.

Here are my 5 Reasons to Learn Guitar Music Theory:

1) You can hear a song and easily figure out its chords! - Most songs use a small number of chords and they typically are major, minor and 7th. By understanding the chords of a key, you can often deconstruct popular songs very quickly with this knowledge and experience.

2) You can use your guitar music theory to write songs! - When I started writing my own songs, I was always guessing as to what chords worked with one another. With theory, once you pick a key and know the corresponding chords of that key, it becomes so much easier to write songs. All of the chords will sound great together and it can help give you confidence and structure to shaping a song.

3) You can play chords all over the guitar fretboard! - Are you stuck using the same old open position chords? I was for years! It was frustrating to see the whole guitar fretboard and only play chords in the first few frets. By understanding guitar music theory, you'll discover the CAGED system and be able to play chords all over the fretboard. For example, I have a minimum of 5 different ways of playing a major, minor or 7th chord using the CAGED system (each letter C-A-G-E-D represents a chord shape).

4) You can play notes all over the guitar fretboard! - Once you understand guitar music theory, you'll have a better appreciation for the pentatonic and major scales. Applying this knowledge and memorizing the common patterns will allow you to play along with songs and create your own licks and riffs! It adds a whole new dimension to guitar playing, especially if you are only comfortable with beginner guitar chords.

5) You'll become a more confident guitarist! - From experience, I have found so much value in learning guitar music theory. I definitely feel more comfortable playing songs that I enjoy hearing and also coming up with my own creations. Additionally, music theory applies to all instruments, so you receive additional benefits playing with other musicians or if you want to play other instruments.

Overall, I highly recommend taking the time to learn guitar music theory. Over the years, I've found the best teachers of theory to be Desi Serna and Marty Schwartz. Specifically, I found excellent content using Desi's Fretboard Theory Volume I and Marty's Music Theory Survival Guide.

If you are past the beginner phase and ready for the next level, check out learning guitar music theory. In my opinion, it's well worth your time and effort!

What do you think of guitar music theory? Have you found other teachers or resources that have been helpful to you? Please share your feedback with us below!

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