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The guitar's body parts!

Hello All, here's my first blog! I wanted to share something simple yet, I believe, very important. This is learning the correct names for parts of the guitar or body parts as I call them. Why is it important? Using incorrect terms creates confusion. Imagine you are visiting a guitar technician because you'd like your guitar set-up for the best playability; you wouldn't want to look silly in front of him/her by using all the wrong names. There is another reason which I shall go into later.

One of things I do in my introductory guitar lessons is setting this knowledge in place. Using diagrams of either the classical, electric or acoustic guitar and with the guitar itself I proceed to explain how the guitar is like a person without arms and legs. Stand the guitar upright and you will see that the guitar has a body, a neck (long and tall like a giraffe's) and a head.

The head is also known as the headstock; I explain that there are often different names for the same thing. Another example is the fingerboard or the fretboard. My students are often thrilled to hear about the unexpected names such as nut, saddle and machine heads.

Christian Everett's electric guitar

This brings me onto a delightful memory of my Dad's music shop in Gillingham, Kent called French Music which he operated throughout the '80s and '90s. He sold primarily second hand guitars and amps. Often people would come into the shop wishing to sell their guitars and in their attempted sales pitch they were at pains to list out all the features of the guitar. "It's a great guitar", they would say, "it comes with wires (strings), a case (bag), arm (neck), whammy bar (tremolo/vibrato arm), plucker (plectrum/pick), winders (machine heads)" and so on.

This is the other reason why it is important to learn the correct terms and you can see how completely wrong they got it! Needless to say my dad and I were chuckling to ourselves and still recall that story on a regular basis. Of course I hope that you won't be selling your guitar to a second hand guitar shop and should you need help, feel free to browse my page on guitar lessons and give me a call.


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