From blues to country, rock, jazz, and classical, the guitar plays an essential part in our musical heritage and culture. If you've ever wanted to learn how to play the guitar or improve your knowledge and skills of the instrument, the following book recommendations will help get you started.
COMPOSER AND GUITARIST
Bruce Arnold has taught at Princeton, New York University, Dartmouth, New England Conservatory of Music, and the Berklee College of Music. He has written over 50 books on music education and hosts the most extensive interactive distance-learning Web site for musicians in the U.S., at www. muse-eek.com. He is also creator and director of the NYU Summer Guitar Intensive Program (www.nyuguitar.com).
GUITAR FOR DUMMIES
By Mark Phillips and Jon Chappell (1998)
If you've just bought a guitar, this is one of the "must own" books. It contains information on all aspects of the guitar, from how to care for it to the names of the various parts. You will also find good information on music theory and different kinds of styles. Of course, there are playing tips, but for me its strong point is its value as a source for understanding your new instrument and the language used in music and guitardom.
A MODERN METHOD FOR GUITAR
Volumes 1, 2, 3 Complete
By William Leavitt (1999)
These volumes explain one of the oldest guitar methods, the Berklee Method--which set the standard for serious contemporary guitar study. One of the reasons why Berklee's alumni tend to be among the "who's who" of guitarists is the teachers there show students the essence of great musicianship and inspire them to push themselves to new heights. A Modern Method for Guitar is the manual for this process, since it provides a solid basis before the student "jumps out of the nest."
MASTER ANTHOLOGY OF JAZZ GUITAR SOLOS
Featuring Solos by the World's Finest Jazz Guitarists!
By Chris Buzzelli (and others) (2001)
This multivolume set is a wonderful introduction to the work of a host of great players. A CD containing a solo by each guitarist is presented, along with a transcription. The set provides a great way to immerse yourself in many different styles of improvisation. Even if you can't read music, this series is still indispensable because it's filled with great music by artists who are shaping the future of guitar.
MUSICIAN AND AUTHOR
Marc Schonbrun is a...