The Hal Leonard Acoustic Guitar Method book includes real songs you can hear on the radio to teach a variety of acoustic guitar concepts. Included are songs by Eric Clapton, Robert Johnson, James Taylor, the Indigo Girls, and many others.
There are lesson sections on topics such as fingerpicking, strumming, tuning, and different musical styles. Rock, folk, country, blues, and bluegrass are among the styles you can learn by reading this book.
While it is not necessarily a beginner book, you do not need to know how to read music to use it. This allows people to learn the guitar without having to spend a lot of time studying music theory and scales.
It also lets you learn at your own pace, skipping around whenever you feel like it. While it is designed for acoustic guitar players, the lessons and concepts can be applied to any style of guitar playing.
The subject matter may be a little bit difficult for people who have never played any instrument and are not familiar with music theory basics. At times, it is more of a song or sheet music book than a step-by-step instruction manual. The majority of the songs included are just a sample of a few measures from each song. The end of each chapter contains a full song you can learn to go along with the lesson.
In fairness to the author, the book is intended to be an addition to another guitar course, not a step-by-step guide for beginners. The cover states plainly “supplement to any guitar method” so there can be no confusion about the author’s intent.
The Hal Leonard Acoustic Guitar Method does assume you have some basic understanding of how to play the guitar, including strumming patterns, chord fingering, and scales. After a quick review of these basics, the book delves right into difficult chords and syncopated rhythms. One of the Hal Leonard basic acoustic guitar courses is a great complement to this guide.
The book includes approximately 45 songs or song excerpts to help illustrate the guitar concepts being taught in each chapter. Seeing real-world examples makes these concepts easier to learn and keeps the practice interesting. The songs are written in tablature, so you do not even need to know how to read music. The book does not get into too many details in each lesson, focusing mainly on general concepts instead.
The quality of the tabs is excellent when compared to the most commonly available tablatures on the Internet. The Hal Leonard Acoustic Guitar Method includes the actual notes as the song was written, not some amateur musician’s best guess.
Beginners can still benefit from the book, but they may have to come back and re-read certain songs later on in the musical education before the concepts will make complete sense. You may be wanting to put up your electric guitars for sale, after learning the acoustic methods in Hal’s book.