If you’re just starting, anything will do the first 3 weeks. Building a habit of regular playing is the first step, so I would make things as easy/fun as possible. Don’t underestimate the challenge of finding a regular time to practice and actually doing it 5 days a week, 10 minutes a day. Do this first, before you conquer the rest of music. After the first 3 weeks (or sooner for you type A’s), you will want to branch out, so what can you do in just 10 minutes a day? The short answer is not much, obviously, but you can do something ! Try one of the following:
- a part of a song (verse, chorus, etc.).
- for beginners, a new strumming pattern or chord. (maybe for that new song you’re learning)
- a new scale position. (don’t go overboard, as I explain in “Take Control: for guitar”, only 2 positions will cover half of the neck)
- a new riff. ( in the same book, I show that only 6 riffs add up to 100’s of combinations)
- Memorize the 6th and 5th string note names. These are crucial to locating bar chords and the 2 main scale positions in #3.
- a technique exercise. ( I wouldn’t start this until I was up to 20+ minutes a day)
I will be dealing with all of these ideas (and more) in future posts, so have patience! If you are short on patience, everything mentioned above is presented in my 2 books;”No Fail Guitar” (beginner), and “Take Control: for guitar” (advanced). As a bonus, the main elements are condensed to just a few pages (2-4) in the back. Perfect for the guitarist with a 10 minute a day practice schedule! And you really don’t need to learn a ton of stuff. You could play a gig with 12-18 chord forms, 2 scale positions and 6 riffs in your chosen style, (I’ve seen people do it with less). This is why I tell my students that it’s much better to be very good with a few things than suck with a thousand!