Lesson 4: It's D Minor Sunshine
Lesson 4…we’re moving along nicely! How’d Lesson 3 go for you? Hopefully, you’re feeling a bit more confident with your chord changes and your strumming because we’re going to be developing that a bit more in this lesson. Also, if your fingers are hurting from all of that chord practice, I’ve got an exercise for you that should help with that.
Before we get started – pay attention to the weight of your pick. As I said, we’re going to be delving more into strumming in this lesson, so be sure to find a weight that you’re comfortable with. For beginners, it’s usually a good idea to stick with as lightweight a pick as you can find. It’s much more forgiving!
Also, not to get too much into your personal hygiene, but KEEP YOUR NAILS SHORT! It’s really, really difficult to play any stringed instrument with long fingernails simply because they get in your way. You want them short so that you can press the strings down fully with just your fingertips. A good rule of thumb is that you shouldn’t see any of the white part of your nail. If your nail is hitting the fretboard itself, it’s too long.
In this lesson, we’ll be going over…
- The D minor chord
- Finger stretching exercise
- Strumming, specifically how to skip a down-strum
Beginner Finger Stretches
This finger stretch exercise will help you develop your finger strength, finger flexibility, finger independence, the strength of the muscles in your hand, and more!
The D Minor Chord
Going from a D major chord to a D minor chord requires you to reconfigure your fingers on the fretboard, so the chord shapes are quite different!
Meet The Metronome
Your metronome should be your best friend! Seriously – it can make a huge difference to your playing, helping you keep time and develop your sense of rhythm.
THE Strumming Pattern
This strumming pattern is one I like to call “Old Faithful” because it’s always there for you when you need it! It’s a great go-to pattern to have in your back pocket.
How To Read Guitar TAB
Reading TAB, or guitar tablature, is important for beginners to learn because it not only tells you which note to play but where to play it.
Sunshine Of Your Love
This is a classic riff from Cream, featuring the great Eric Clapton. It’s a bit difficult, but it’s a good challenge and you’ll get a lot out of it!
Songs For Lesson 4
Here are some songs that will help you practice the new skills and techniques you’ve learned in Lesson 4 of my beginner’s course.
Lesson 4 Practice
Now that you’ve completed Lesson 4 of the JustinGuitar Beginner’s Course, here’s a 20-minute practice schedule for you to practice everything you’ve just learned.