Book Review: Guitar Theory for Dummies

Reviewed by Evan Decker

Guitar Theory for Dummies is a general view on the music theory that is useful to apply to guitar. From basic chord shapes to modal scales, this book will benefit anyone who plays guitar and is looking to add a method to his/her playing.

The book is wonderfully paced. It gives information in logical steps, for example, starting off with a basic introduction to music theory and applying this general theory to the guitar neck. Then it moves on to concepts such as intervals and chords, and then how to apply this knowledge to the fretboard. It then talks about chord progressions and how keys work, then how to apply this to guitar-driven music.  Finally, the book gets into one of the most essential parts of playing guitar, soloing. It teaches basic scales, how to use them, and how the solos in popular music function. The book shows how to make guitar playing interesting, and not stick to the traditional clichés of guitar players.

I feel Guitar Theory for Dummies is beneficial to any guitar player. As an intermediate guitar player, I found this very simple to understand, but a beginner could also obtain this knowledge without hindrance.

Evan Decker

Evan Decker was a sophomore in the Gifted program at Hahnville High. He enjoys playing guitar, singing, and listening to music.

Editor’s note: Book reviews are published throughout the summer and fall in agreement with Hahnville High School gifted English teacher Deborah Unger in conjunction with the Brown Foundation Service Learning Program and Unger’s “Adolescents Advocate Literacy” Brown Service Learning Grant.


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