The 20 Best Songs to Learn on Guitar

The 20 Best Songs to Learn on Guitar

Learning to play the guitar is an exciting journey filled with discovery, creativity, and musical expression. Whether you’re a beginner picking up the instrument for the first time or an experienced player looking to expand, mastering the best songs to Learn on Guitar can be rewarding and inspiring.

In this article, we’ll explore the 20 best songs to learn on guitar, covering various genres, techniques, and skill levels to help you hone your craft and become a versatile guitarist.

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What to Consider When Choosing Songs to Learn on Guitar

Choosing songs to learn on guitar is an exciting yet important decision that can greatly influence your musical journey and development as a guitarist. Here are some key factors to consider when selecting songs to learn.

Skill Level

Assess your current skill level as a guitarist. Choose songs that match your proficiency level, whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, or advanced player. Starting with simpler songs allows you to build a strong foundation of basic techniques before tackling more complex pieces.

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Genre Preferences

Consider your musical preferences and the genres you enjoy listening to. Whether it’s rock, blues, pop, folk, jazz, or classical, selecting songs within genres that resonate with you will keep you motivated and engaged throughout the learning process.

Chord Progressions and Techniques

Look for songs that incorporate a variety of chord progressions, strumming patterns, fingerpicking styles, and guitar techniques. Learning diverse techniques and playing styles will help you develop versatility as a guitarist and expand your musical repertoire.

Melody and Rhythm

Pay attention to the melody and rhythm of the song. Choose songs with memorable melodies and rhythmic patterns that you find appealing and enjoyable to play. Developing a strong sense of rhythm and melody will enhance your overall musicality and expression on the guitar.

Song Structure and Complexity

Evaluate the song’s structure and complexity. Start with songs that have simple song structures, consisting of verses, choruses, and bridges, before progressing to more complex arrangements with multiple sections and instrumental solos.

Breaking down songs into smaller sections can make them more manageable to learn.

Lyrics and Emotion

Consider the lyrics and emotional content of the song. Choosing songs with meaningful lyrics and emotional depth can help you connect with the music on a deeper level and convey emotion through your playing. Playing with feeling and expression adds richness and authenticity to your performance.

Challenge and Growth

Seek songs that present a reasonable challenge and opportunities for growth. Learning new songs that push your boundaries and introduce you to new techniques or playing styles can help you continuously improve as a guitarist and expand your musical horizons.

Personal Connection

Lastly, choose songs that resonate with you personally and evoke strong emotions or memories. Playing songs you connect with on a personal level will make the learning process more enjoyable deepen your appreciation for the music and strengthen your connection to the instrument.

Best Songs to Learn on Guitar

Hallelujah by Leonard Cohen

This classic song is a beautiful and moving ballad. It uses relatively simple chords and fingerpicking patterns, making it a great choice for intermediate players.

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Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door by Bob Dylan

This iconic song is a great introduction to fingerpicking. It uses just a few chords, but the fingerpicking pattern adds a nice layer of complexity. It is one of the best songs to learn on guitar.

Three Little Birds by Bob Marley

This reggae classic is a fun and easy song to learn. It uses just three chords and a simple strumming pattern.

Wagon Wheel by Old Crow Medicine Show

This catchy sing-along song is perfect for campfires and jam sessions. It uses a few basic chords and a fast strumming pattern.

Brown Eyed Girl by Van Morrison

This classic rock song is a great choice for beginners. It uses just four chords and a simple strumming pattern.

Hotel California by The Eagles

This iconic song is a bit more challenging, but it’s still doable for intermediate players. It uses a variety of chords and strumming patterns, and it features a cool fingerpicking section.

Imagine by John Lennon

This beautiful and hopeful song is a great choice for players of all levels. It uses simple chords and a fingerpicking pattern, and it’s a song that everyone knows and loves.

Let It Be by The Beatles

Another classic Beatles song that’s perfect for beginners. It uses just three chords and a simple strumming pattern. It is one of the best songs to learn on guitar.

Hey Jude by The Beatles

This sing-along classic is a bit more challenging, but it’s still doable for intermediate players. It uses a variety of chords and strumming patterns, and it features a cool piano intro that you can play on the guitar.

No Woman, No Cry by Bob Marley

This reggae classic is a great choice for beginners and intermediate players alike. It uses just a few chords and a simple strumming pattern. It is one of the best songs to learn on guitar.

Redemption Song by Bob Marley

This powerful and introspective song features simple chords and a fingerpicking pattern, making it a great choice for intermediate players seeking a challenge.

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Mr. Tambourine Man by Bob Dylan

This classic folk song uses a unique blend of chords and strumming patterns, offering a fun learning experience for intermediate players.

Dust in the Wind by Kansas

This iconic rock ballad features beautiful fingerpicking patterns and intricate chord progressions, perfect for intermediate to advanced players seeking a challenge.

Layla (acoustic version) by Eric Clapton

This soulful masterpiece showcases Clapton’s fingerpicking prowess, offering an advanced challenge for experienced players.

Wish You Were Here by Pink Floyd

This atmospheric classic features delicate fingerpicking patterns and unique chord voicings, appealing to intermediate players who enjoy exploring textures. It is one of the best songs to learn on guitar.

Folsom Prison Blues by Johnny Cash

This iconic country song features a driving strumming pattern and simple chords, perfect for beginners looking into the genre.

Sweet Home Alabama by Lynyrd Skynyrd

This Southern rock anthem features a powerful strumming pattern and a catchy melody, making it a fun choice for beginners and intermediate players.

Seven Nation Army by The White Stripes

This modern rock classic features a distinctive riff and a simple chord structure, making it perfect for beginners exploring rock music. It is one of the best songs to learn on guitar.

Zombie by The Cranberries

This powerful rock ballad features a memorable melody and a driving strumming pattern, appealing to intermediate players seeking emotional depth.

I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor

This empowering disco anthem features a simple chord structure and a catchy melody, making it a fun and uplifting choice for beginners and intermediate players. It is one of the best songs to learn on guitar.

FAQs

Why is it important to learn songs on guitar?

Learning songs on guitar is essential for developing your skills, technique, and musical repertoire. It allows you to apply what you’ve learned in practice to real-world situations and provides context for understanding music theory and guitar techniques.

What is the easiest guitar song to learn?

“Paranoid” by Black Sabbath
“Someone You Loved” by Lewis Capaldi
“Sweet Home Alabama” by Lynyrd Skynyrd
“Free Fallin” by Tom Petty

Can I get better at guitar by just learning songs?

Yes
Learning to play notes, scales and chords are fundamentals of your musical education. But the best way to learn guitar is to put those techniques into practice while learning a new song.

What is the hardest song to learn on guitar?

Head in the Clouds by Maria Linnemann.
Danse rythmique by Ida Presti.
‘Symphony of Destruction’ by Megadeth.
Folios by Tōru Takemitsu.

How long does it take to learn guitar?

It can take 2 -3 years to get to a decent intermediate level, 5 years to get good with what you have learned and 10 years to jump to a more pro level.

Conclusion

Whether playing famous rock songs with simple strumming or learning complicated finger-picking tunes, each song teaches important things and helps you get better at playing the guitar.

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