Let’s learn the guitar string names (and numbers). To learn guitar easier, you need to know the names and numbers for each of the strings almost instantly. This is important because it speeds up the learning process. If somebody says “we’re going to be on the D string,” and you can’t recall the string names on the guitar, you might miss the next thing they have to say… then you gotta rewind the video… it’ll slow down the learning process and make this a lot more frustrating than it needs to be. If we learn the guitar string names in order, you will also be able to tune easily.
Memorizing the string names in order, using a mnemonic device
First we use a mnemonic device, which is a sentence where the first letter of each word is the name of that string (which is the note that you get when you play that string open). Here are some example mnemonic devices that we can use to memorize the guitar strings:
The string names themselves, from THICKEST to thinnest: E – A – D – G – B – e
If we make a sentence that uses each of those letters, it’s way easier to remember the names of the guitar strings. I have 3 suggestions.
- Elephants And Donkeys Grow Big Ears
- Elvis Always Did Get By Easy
- Eddie Ate Dynamite Good Bye Eddie
The string numbers are even easier!
To figure out the guitar string numbers, we start at the thinnest string – that’s the first string. As long as you can count up to 6 from there, with the 6th string being the thickest string, you’ll be fine!
In other words, the thinnest string (e) is the 1st string. The B string is 2, the G string is 3, the D string is 4, the A string is 5, and the low E string (the thickest string) is 6.
In the video tutorial above, I show you an exercise that helps you memorize the strings as fast as possible. I call this a brute force memorization technique where you systematically go through the string names every single day for five minutes a day, using flash cards to test yourself and eventually memorize the guitar string names in order.
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I hope this helps speed up the learning process! Best of luck!