Get Better Gear!

Premier Sponsors

Other World Computing


Top 5 Free Apps

Release Date: August 05, 2009
Genre: Games
Release Date: May 22, 2009
Genre: Games
Release Date: August 29, 2009
Genre: Games
Release Date: March 27, 2009
Release Date: August 07, 2009

iTunes New Music Releases

Release Date: September 29, 2009
Genre: Rock
Release Date: September 20, 2009
Release Date: September 15, 2009
Release Date: August 25, 2009
Genre: Rock
Release Date: August 25, 2009

Top 5 Paid Apps

Release Date: April 22, 2009
StickWars $0.99
Release Date: March 31, 2009
Genre: Games
Bloons $0.99
Release Date: April 05, 2009
Genre: Games

Discover New Music

  • Playing the Angel

    • 8 out of 10
    • Depeche Mode
    • Oddly enough, Playing The Angel is a return to form for Depeche Mode, even though it may well be argued that they never truly deviated from their roots in their more recent offerings. In the

  • 2112

    • 10 out of 10
    • Rush
    • We all know it, right? Well, ya just gotta have it. 2112 finally showed Rush out on their own, doing their own thing, and doing it well, IMHO.
  • With Teeth

    • 4 out of 10
    • Nine Inch Nails
    • In the sprawling post-A&R rock and roll world, there are two camps: the Beatles and the Stones. The Beatles are the artists that like to explore, evolve, and change styles. The Stones are the artis

  • Haunted

    • 10 out of 10
    • Poe
    • Dropping like a bomb on some of the blah musical offerings of her contemporaries, Haunted was one of the best albums of 2000, obliterating the competition.

      Ostensibly a tie-in to her brot

  • Pressure Chief

    • 6 out of 10
    • Cake
    • Pressure Chief, Cake's latest album, didn't immediately grab me. In fact, it took perhaps half a dozen listens before I started truly enjoying it. Any

Reader Specials

Visit Deals On The Web for the best deals on all consumer electronics, iPods, and more!

Free on iTunes

Guitars, Guitars, Guitars, And More

One of the most versatile musical instruments ever made is the guitar. It’s easy to play (or so I’ve been told), requires no external power source (unless you insist on going electric), produces beautiful music (in the right hands), and doubles as an excellent weapon (just ask El Kabong)

The guitar was the preferred instrument of crooners of the 50s, hippies of the 60s, heavy metal bands of the 70s, folks singers of the 80s, and pop artists of the 90s.

Today kids everywhere play like they are guitar heroes, using fake guitars connected to video game consoles and strumming along with classic tunes. These games are challenging and fun, but they are not the same as playing the real thing. Kids seem satisfied with the lack of musical knowledge these games give, it’s a high score their after.

What about the accomplishment of playing a tune that actually sounds like it’s suppose to? Isn’t decoding the language of scales and notes more challenging than watching colored dots slide down a screen?

Luckily some kids do graduate from fake guitar playing. They want to know what does it take to play a real guitar? What are chords? How do you read music?

It’s not just the kids, many people looking for a personal creative outlet pick up the guitar for the first time, my self included.

What sparked my interest, however, is the guitar simulators that are available for the iPhone. The 2 best, from what I’ve gathered from reading the reviews, are PocketGuitar, a $0.99 app that has a boatload of features, and Guitarist, costing $2.99 and offering the ability to record several tracks.

It’s probably not a good idea to attempt to learn the fundamentals of guitar playing without an actual guitar, but I think the iPhone and one of these apps might serve as a nice stand-in when you want to practice and left your real guitar at home.

That leaves the learning part, and your trusty iPhone or iPod can help out with that too.

I found a whole mess of guitar tutorials in the iTunes Store, some seem pretty basic while others take a more formal approach and attempt to teach everything from the parts of the guitar to reading music.

First up there’s EyeGuitar. According to the byline James Devon has been teaching guitar for 25 years and has developed a teaching method that gets fast results. The podcasts are actually introductions into paid lessons available at

James Devon shows you how in EyeGuitar

After watching several of the free introductory lessons I found that I’m not so intimidated by the thought of handling a guitar with a mind to make music from it. That’s a good thing. Unfortunately, to learn more from Mr. Devon you have to cough up some cash. The good news is that the lessons are fairly cheap; US$3.00 each.

If you don’t want to pay for lessons (no matter how cheap they may be) you’re still in luck, Beginner Guitar Lessons and Songs by iPlayMusic is right up your alley.

There are more than 20 episodes available for free at the iTunes Store covering everything from how to hold your guitar to strumming and actually playing something recognizable.

iPlayMusic is Free

This is a well done series. The lessons are short, but they are chock full of info. The videos also show several angles at once so that you can get a good look at what’s being explained. You’ll likely have to run each lesson several times to get the most out of them, but that shouldn’t be a problem.

Pretty soon you’ll join the ranks of real guitar players as you strum along to real music. How cool is that?

On a side note you should know that there are also many audio podcasts centered on teaching guitar, but I’m a visual type of guy, so I tend to want someone to show me how to do it rather than tell me.

Maybe you really don’t want to learn to play, but enjoy listening and learning about those who do play.

Gibson, the makers of premium instruments, especially guitars, has a video podcast series that offers interviews with world class guitarists, lessons, and performances.

This is another great series and anyone interested in guitars or music in general will get a kick out this podcast.

Scotty Moore on Gibson Video Podcast Series

On a special note, anyone interested in Elvis will be happy to know that there’s a series of interviews with The King’s guitar player, Scotty Moore.

Looking at Scotty makes you wonder what Elvis would look like today if he’d lived.

Gibson’s Video Podcast Series is good find.
(Thank you! Thank you very much!)

OK, that’s a wrap for this week.

Be sure the check out the other free stuff below (with direct links):


Vern Seward is a writer who currently lives in Orlando, FL. He’s been a Mac fan since Atari Computers folded, but has worked with computers of nearly every type for 20 years.

Post Your Comments

  Remember Me  Forgot your password?

Not a member? Register now. You can post comments without logging in, but they'll show up as a "guest" post.

Commenting is not available in this section entry.