How To Know If You’re An Intermediate Guitar Player

How To Know If You’re An Intermediate Guitar Player?

We have different levels to showcase your skills as a guitar player. From beginner, intermediate and finally the advanced level. 

What is an intermediate guitar player?

How to know if you’re an intermediate guitar player, you must develop the skills necessary at this level. To truly be an intermediate level guitar player I would study and understand the following. 

Chords :

    Your chord knowledge is going to need to start expanding. You should study extended

chord shapes, such as sus2, sus4 and 7th chords. I would also spend time learning Barre

Chords and three string adjacent triads. You will need to understand how to play these chords properly and how to use these chords together to form interesting chord progressions.

Rhythms:

You will need a more advanced knowledge of rhythmic patterns, you should have the following rhythmic patterns internalizes and mastered

– All sixteenth note patterns

-basic triplets

– Basic six tuples shapes

– Time signatures 4/4, 3/4 and 6/8 should be finished

Scales:

Learning how to incorporate diatonic scales and their modes into your playing. You will also need to understand the scale patterns, the harmonic patterns. And how this material integrates with your old scales and knowledge. 

Lead playing:

    Ideally with lead it would be best if you could play at a max speed of at least 120 bpm

comfortably and consistently. This means that your actual playing technique is fairly smooth.

You should start to understand the concept of guitar phrasing, although you will probably still

have a rudimentary knowledge of this skill. 

Intermediate guitar songs

  1. Aerosmith – walk this way
  2. Eric clapton – wonderful tonight
  3. Foo fighters – everlong 
  4. Jimi hendrix – all along the watchtower 
  5. John Mayer – waiting on the world to change
  6. Led zeppelin – black dog
  7. Metallica – enter sandman
  8. Pink floyd – comfortably numb 
  9. The beatles – something
  10. The police – every breath you take 

How long does it take to be an intermediate guitar player? 

3-6 Months (Intermediate Level): You’ll start diving more and more into technique and some beginning music theory. You might learn some more advanced strum patterns, hammer-ons, and more difficult plucking. This is also a good time to begin reading tablature (guitar tabs) and getting a feel for reading music. 

How many hours should you spend practicing every day?

If you’re in the “guitar honeymoon” stage and you just got your shiny guitar unboxed, I wouldn’t be surprised if you spend an hour or two admiring your brand new instrument and trying to pick up some chords! 

But if you’re past that initial excitement and want to get into a routine where you practice each and every day (or at least around 3 times a week), I’d recommend shooting for 30 minutes to an hour as a beginner. Don’t forget to take breaks for your fingers! 

Measuring your time 

When people get started, they often want to know how many weeks or months it will take before they can play songs. This is pretty useless as a metric. While it is easy to guarantee that you won’t be playing complex solos in a few days, the rest is down to how much time you actually devote. 

If you’re practicing for five minutes a day, you will get somewhere eventually, but the progress is going to be very slow. If a matter of minutes every day is all you can manage then it will be years rather than weeks before you can play full songs.

Practice hours is the key consideration. If you are dedicated enough to spend two hours or even more each day on learning how to play guitar then you might start to pick things up very quickly. Think of it like learning how to drive, if you do one hour a week you might get there in 6-12 months, but if you take the ‘intensive course’ you can be up and running after a week or two of solid tuition.

 Practice schedule 

Practicing multiple times a week will ensure that the knowledge sticks in your mind, and improve the muscle memory and even the hand strength required to play guitar. While you can play guitar pretty much for as long as your schedule allows on a day to day basis, don’t practice for 9 hours one day and then not touch your guitar for the next two weeks. This will mean you are less likely to remember the knowledge you’ve picked up and the use of time is not efficient.

Schedules don’t have to be like a school timetable. It doesn’t have to be like being thirteen again, but creating some sort of a plan is a good way to encourage regular practice. Regularity is the best way to get to a decent level of playing.

One extremely simple tactic people sometimes employ to encourage regular practice is “The Seinfeld Method”. This productivity technique is much-mocked, and it does seem too simple to even be advice! Originally used by Jerry Seinfeld to ensure he didn’t procrastinate too much, the technique is simple:

Get a calendar, and mark off each day you reach your practice goal with a cross. The idea is quite simply to aim to make the longest ‘chain’ of days in a row where you have practiced. It is that simple, but many people have claimed that this method has helped a huge amount with learning any new skill. For this technique to be effective, you need to create a ‘minimum’ level of practice which qualifies you for a cross. For instance, at least 20 minutes a day. Otherwise, you could cheat your system by simply strumming a couple of chords.

How do you know  if you are a beginner, intermediate or advanced guitar player?

In this part let me break down in simple ways to identify your skills as a guitar player. 

Beginner

Purpose – master the basics

Content –  Easy open chords, 4th and 8th strumming and loads of simple songs!

Intermediate

Purpose – Acquire a complete foundation of all the essential guitar skills needed to play most general pop and rock songs.

Content – 16th strumming, CAGED shapes and arpeggios, improved technique, basic music theory & knowledge of diatonic chords and keys, experience playing a variety of styles and genres (ideally along to the original recordings) and beginning to learn to improvise simple lead guitar.

Now we have a clearer answer to this question, “How to know if you’re an intermediate guitar player.” So many things need to be in place to be able to play intermediate level songs, for some people it becomes too much, they lose focus and their progress can stall. 

Advanced

Purpose – To attain a mastery of the instrument in your desired genres and for your specific disciplines (aka musical outlets) 

Content – Fantastic lead guitar competency and perhaps mastery, knowledge of advanced harmony, brilliant technique and phrasing, more complete fretboard and music theory knowledge and finally – finding a true purpose and your ‘voice’ on the instrument with multiple musical outlets. This can be helped initially by knowledge and application of;

  • ​5 pentatonic scale positions
  • Major scale all over the neck & applying this to chord shapes, improvising and advanced harmony

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