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Music Vocabulary - 4 Quick Lessons!

music vocabulary

Music vocabulary is all of the words and jargon associated with playing music, and in this case, all of the words associated with playing guitar. If you ever have trouble with what a word means within a Guitartricks lesson, look no further than our guitar glossary here.

Let’s take a look at some commonly used words when playing and learning guitar. Now, a lot of you may already know these but this is aimed at beginners who may not be familiar with these concepts. Here are 4 commonly used guitar words that may not have an obvious meaning. 



Arpeggios are when the guitar player individually picks each note of a chord in descending or ascending order. Think about the opening riff in “House of the Rising Sun” by The Animals. That is a classic example of an arpeggio! For more info on arpeggios, check out this lesson on how to play and create arpeggios. 


Double Stop

A double stop in guitar means playing two notes at the same time. Most of the time, this means playing only two notes within the same chord at the same time. Double stop is a strange name for this technique because there is no actual stopping. You’d think that a double stop was something like a palm mute, in which you use your palm to stop the strings from vibrating, but nope, a double stop is simply playing two notes at once! 



Open Position / Open Chords

Open position means playing chords at the very first fret, or playing them as open chords. Open position usually is associated with open chords, and open chords are usually played with the nut acting as a bar. These chords are usually the first chords guitar players will ever learn. But remember, when someone asks you to play in the open position, you want to go all the way back to the nut. 


Blues Turnaround 

The blues turnaround, or simply the turnaround, is the last two bars of the 12-bar blues. The turnaround is how most players end the 12-bar form, and it sets up the guitar player for another set of 12 bars. Interestingly, turnarounds can also be played as an intro, and not just at the end. The blues turnaround usually involves play chords within a key in a specific order. The chords are V-IV-I, most of the time. Learn how to start and end the 12-bar blues with a turnaround below. 


And that’s it! For a better understanding of these techniques and concepts, don’t forget to check out the lessons right here on Guitartricks.com 


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