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Feel free to message me or comment me your guitar questions on YouTube.
Perhaps I might answer them here! The most recently added answers will appear
highest on this list. - Cody Clarke
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Q: Hey Cody, I was wondering if you could help me out. I heard you need a capo to play songs in English,
and then take it off when you want to switch to your native language. This might not be relevant to most of your students,
but English is not my native language and I'm afraid I'll break my $17,000 WGA
(World Guitar Association!)-certified guitar if I do something wrong.
So, could you show me how to use a capo?
This is a very common problem. Guitars from various countries around the world are not always compatible with players.
Capos are there to remedy this.
Region 0 guitars do not require capos. They can be played by anyone of any descent. They are, as to be expected,
way more expensive. The price of one dwarfs even your $17,000 WGA (World Guitar Association!)-certified guitar.
I am not legally allowed to print the price, as the price is copyrighted, so you'll have to call a retailer up and they can tell
you the price on the phone.
Region 1 guitars are suitable for players only in Canada, United States; U.S. territories; Bermuda.
Region 2: Western and Central Europe; Western Asia; Israel, Iran, Egypt, Japan, South Africa, Swaziland, Lesotho;
United Kingdom, Turkey, French overseas territories.
Region 3: Southeast Asia; South Korea; Taiwan; Hong Kong; Macau.
Region 4: Mexico, Central and South America; Caribbean; Australia; New Zealand; Oceania.
Region 5: Ukraine, Belarus, Russia, Continent of Africa, Central and South Asia, Mongolia, North Korea.
Region 6: People's Republic of China.
Region 7: Heaven, Pearly Gates and Minor Outlying Islands, Limbo.
Region 8: International venues such as aircraft, cruise ships, etc.
Capos are essentially what is known as All Region. By placing a capo on the same fret number as the region
(for instance, 1st fret would be Region 1, etc.) you can set your guitar to that region for as long as the capo remains on.
Happy playing! Hope that helps.
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Q: I've been watching your videos a few times and I still can't find the soundhole on my stratocaster,
is there like a series that was shipped without soundholes or something?
Stratocasters have sound holes. Plenty of them. You see those dots on the pickups? Those are all soundholes,
and the dots are just plugging them up during shipment. You're supposed to pry those off, or melt them
with a soldering iron to expose the individual sound holes underneath. This will significantly improve your tone.
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Q: Would you suggest melting my pinky and ring finger together like Django to avert learning pinky/ring
finger independence? If so do you know of any good compounds to use? Thanks in advance.
The technique you refer to (burning the pinky and ring finger until they fuse) is called Jazz Style,
which is a brutal practice not unlike male and female circumcision. I do not condone Jazz Style
(as you can just tape those fingers together) or circumcision (as you can just tape the foreskin back,
or hide the clitoris behind tape.)
* * *
Q: Cody Clarke whenever I pick up the guitar to play it my cat gets this scared look on her face and runs out of the room.
Do you know any songs or notes I can play that will make guitar playing fun and enjoyable for both myself and my cat?
Cats hear on a much higher spectrum of hearing than we do. I'd suggest tightening your strings as much as possible
before playing if your target audience is cats. Just keep turning the pegs until they won't go any further.
Dogs on the other hand can only hear in black and white, and thus miss out on the 'color' that is musicality.
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Q: Could you possibly cover the topic of switching between picks at some point in a future video?
I have about five right now, and I am getting tired of filling my songs with Pick Rest Gaps.
If you have five, I'd suggest taping one to each fingertip of your strumming hand, and picking that way.
This is what flamenco guitarists like Paco De Lucia do. iCaliente!
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You cover basic music, which is p cool. But picking w. a quarter != sharp.
It'd help to explain what a sharp actually is and how it fits into music :)
Thank you for bringing this up!
You're right, picking with a quarter isn't all there is to playing sharp. As with all guitar technique,
it must be applied tastefully within the context of the song. A lot of guitarists like to play with a quarter for a whole song,
making every note sharp. This is non-tasteful to the max. It's best to keep the quarter in your palm,
switching between that and a pick every so often.
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Q: I've been practicing sweep picking, but I can't keep a good grip on the home-made pubi-picks.
As such, I have 10 or 20 stuck in my guitar now, and I'm running out of pubic hair for making new ones.
I notice that my beard hair has a similar feel to pubic hair, could it be substituted for sweep picks?
Can't wait for the next video. I'm learning so much!
Pube hair is way more absorptive of sweat, this is why I choose it for making sweep picks.
Beard hair is much less absorptive and will be a lot harder to grip. Have you considered buying pubes off craigslist?
When I run out down there, that's what I do.
Another suggestion would be to encase a latex glove in pubes, thus making a sweep picking glove.
That way you can combine finger picking and sweep picking, and you won't be sweating on anything.
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Q: As a misogynist, I aim to minimise all forms of feminity in my musical output.
Aside from avoiding the aforementioned minor keys and chords, how is best to channel my natural
manliness in my guitar-playing? For role-models, I have in mind macho-rock legends Angus Young,
Jimmy Page and Johnny Marr.
All the aforementioned guitarists are of a genre I call 'fringe' music. I could not help you play such a thing,
as I have not touched my lips to alcohol, drugs, or women in all my life.
To me, a manly man is one who can play ascending and descending major scale patterns cleanly and accurately.
He has moisturized hands and short nails. He buys pre-cut vegetables and prepares his grandmother's bath every night.
To you, a manly man is determined by the amount of superfluous substances coursing through ones veins at a given time.
By the amount of women have touched their orifices to his. By old, dirty guitar strings, black grit under fingernails,
and an amp in need of servicing.
I'm sorry, but I cannot help you.
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Q: Hello can you explain to me how to play Jazz? I am currently learning the H flat phrygian major
melodic unisonic scale from Stravinsky's moderated counterpoint studies in analytical harmonic
dissonance and I'm wondering how I can best apply it to jazz improvisation, it's of course still very basic
but eventually I hope I can cut off 2 of my fingers so I can play like Django.
Jazz is also fringe music, although a lesser evil than most fringe music. Jazz at least employs interesting chords
and scales (albeit under the influences of herbs and spices in homemade cigarettes.)
My advice would be stay sober (sorry, no jazz for you!) and apply H flat phrygian major melodic unisonic scale
under a G## major panasonic chord, with a flat five. The flat five really gives the five a flat sound that compliments that scale well.
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Q: Can you teach me how to play guitar like Frank Zappa? I already know the Mixolydian scale, I just need.. more!
WHAT IS IT WITH YOU PEOPLES OBSESSIONS WITH FRINGE MUSIC? DO YOU NOT UNDERSTAND THAT A LIFE CAN BE LIVED DIFFERENTLY THAN THIS WAY? THERE IS A WORLD OF MUSIC THAT EXISTS THAT DOES NOT NECESSITATE THE USE OF STIMULANTS. THERE IS GREAT MUSIC, CREATED (AND TO BE HEARD) BY A SOBER, CONSCIOUS MIND. YOU PEOPLE THINK THAT THE ONLY GREAT THINGS OUT THERE HAVE TO BE CREATED BY SOMEONE UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF SOMETHING. THIS IS NOT THE CASE AND IT NEVER WILL BE THE CASE.
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Q: I watched the first three but am scared to watch the advanced, too much knowledge at once is dangerous,
I'm just a beginner. I have to know one thing though: that cord thing that connects an electric guitar to an ambifier?
I notice there's curly ones and straight ones and ones with designs on them. Which are the best? I think the curly ones give
that heavy sort of thick sound, right? What if I want to play light, thin music? Also, which color picks are the best? I like
the orange triangle ones. Sorry if this is too many questions, thanks, you're awesome, I hope one day I can play as good as you.
Ambifiers are by and large obsolete in the modern age. I don't know anyone who services ambifiers, as the parts for them are extremely rare.
For those of you not in the know, the ambifier is a pre-amplifier amplification device that would amplify the ambient sound
of the room, rather than the guitar itself. The model ThawedGladiator is referring to is probably a H60, which was a hybrid
amplifier/ambifier. (You'd plug in, but you'd also amplify the ambient sound of the room.)
Congrats on the find! Don't gig with it, you wanna keep that baby safe.
In regards to cords, here's a quick review:
Curly cords = Tremelo, twangy sound. (To remember this, think of a pig's tail, as this type of music is most enjoyed
by people who have pigs.)
Straight, black cords = Clean sound. (To remember this, think of Mr. Clean playing a guitar, and with the sheer
vibrational force, shaking the dust off a woman's satin dress at his loft apartment in Manhattan.)
Cords with stitched patterns = Dirty sound. (Think of Jimi Hendrix destroying his guitar, and music in general.
The crowd gathered, losing brain cells and all taste for anything in tune.)
Pick colors don't affect sound, but fans don't have to know that. Tell your fans whatever you want about your picks,
and how certain colors are better than others. A musician is a magician. Build a fantasy world,
for your fans to escape their abusive parents and teachers in. Be Santa Claus. This is why Jerry Garcia was popular.
He was Santa Claus for drug-addicted teens and adults. Don't do drugs though. Stay clean, but stay Santa too.
* * *
Q: Can i use "Go blow dicks, go buy guns" as my personal motto or is this mnemonic device
copyrighted by acclaimed virtuoso Cody Clarke?
All of my mnemonics are under copyright as individual songs. In your private home, you may arpeggiate an
A power chord and an open G while reciting my mnemonics, but any recordings (audio or video) or live performances
are copyright infringement, and punishable by law.
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Q: Could you possibly do a couple of vids for the banjo for me?
I do not own a banjo, as I am cultured enough not to eat raccoon for dinner. However, if I can procure a banjo,
I might do a video on how bad a utensil (I refuse to call it an instrument) it is.
Q: Cody I need help with my guitar face. I know I'm only supposed to engage the guitar face when I'm
playing above the 12th fret, but sometimes I get excited and begin snarling at lower frets, which I believe is known
as premature ejaculation. Also how can I multiply my guitar face when I hit the 24th fret? Or does that naturally happen?
I'm afraid of the 24th fret, because it doesn't get any higher than that and I don't want to top out so soon.
Also, I understand banjo ownership is statistically the fastest way to get herpes.
Guitar faces should always be premeditated and controlled. Musician is to professional pornstar as hobbyist is to man
having intercourse with his own hand. Leave the spontaneous faces to the hobbyist. The musician is in total control of his
faces, has a set group of faces he has practiced while looking in the mirror, and can recall them as fits the music.
Any guitar face within frets 1 through 12 is hobbyist. A musician only guitar faces from 12-24 (or 27, if you are so endowed)
Save your best guitar face for the 24th fret. Simple as that. You should have at least 10 guitar faces in your repertoire. Rank them from
1-10 in intensity.
In regards to banjo, you are correct in your statistic. Another banjo statistic: 90% of all banjo-owners cannot afford a banjo.
* * *
Q: I tried "chikkin pikkin" one time on my guitar and it didn't sound like I was picking chickens at all.
Should I return my guitar for a Genuine TM WGA TM Guitar TM?
I am really, really sorry to hear this. I hear similar stories every day. Luckily, the WGA (World Guitar Association!)
has an exchange program in place wherein if you hand in your bootleg instrument to a WGA (World Guitar Association!)
certified guitar store, you will receive a $100 voucher towards the purchase of a WGA (World Guitar Association!) certified guitar.
Q: Oh man I thought I just needed to practice more! Phew! Approximately how many business days do the WGA
(World Guitar Associated) guitars take to be received? What are some advantages of having a WGA
(World Guitar Associationed) guitar? Do they have auto-lubricating frets? How would I go about buying one of the
"Deluxe" WGA (World Geetar Association) guitars?
Since WGA (World Guitar Association!) guitars utilize parts from all over the world, they can take 6-8 months for delivery.
During that time, if you have a printer capable of rasterisation you can print a paper guitar from the WGA
(World Guitar Association!) website to practice your chord shapes on while you're waiting for your new guitar.
Auto-lubricating frets come on all Deluxe WGA (World Guitar Association!) models. Also including on Deluxe WGA
(World Guitar Association!) models:
- Silent tuners
- Silent knobs
- Silent wormwood body
- Mercury strings
- Certificate of authenticity
Definitely worth the $14,999!
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Q: Could you give me some tips on how precisely I can play the guitar as one would ring a bell?
Famed guitarist Johnny B. Goode is notorious for his abilities in this regard, and I would
like to be able to leech of some of this fame. Please note, I already have a gunny sack.
Playing guitar as though one rings as a bell involves a closed-fist picking technique as to accurately mimic
the motion one would make when in fact ringing a bell. This is a very experimental technique and is done more for flash
than necessity. When rock and roll was fresh a variety of flashy but not at all useful picking techniques were developed:
- Ringing the bell
- Picking the hairs out
- Slapping the harlot
- Tickling the nether-regions
All have been forgotten by time, except the ringing the bell technique, which is immortalized through that classic song.
* * *
Q: I just got one of those slide things for slide guitar also got a guitar that I could play
slide guitar on with my little slide thingy for my slide guitar. What are some good open tunings
for it and is there some proper technique for this thing?
A: Open G and open E are good slide tunings. Just make sure you lube your slide up before playing.
You're gonna wanna use the KY Jelly that gives off a warming sensation, because you wanna keep your strings
nice and warm and slippery for good slide tone!
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Q: Why did Jimmy Page play guitar with a bow?
A: Jimmy Page played guitar with a bow because he was a bad musician.
He was under the influence of inebriates and opiates like most bad musicians, and lost the ability
to discern between what is good and proper technique and what instrument is in his hands
at a given time. People throw the words 'groundbreaking' and 'intelligent' around,
when they should be throwing tomatoes. Do not ask me about bad musicians again.
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Q: This is somewhat of a trick question, but: which chord is best?
A: The best chord is the C chord just as the best scale is the C major scale. It is the most
enjoyable scale in all of music. There is not a single sad note in it. Sad notes read as weakness in a
guitar player to anyone who knows anything about guitar, and are only enjoyed by self-loathing,
shoe-gazing crowds of apathetic teenagers. There is no reason ever to play a sad note.
* * *
Q: Is it possible to replicate a guitar sound by using a violin or other similar stringed
instrument using your techniques or do I need to make a sound hole?
A: Violins sound the way they due because of the bow that is used to play it, but more than that,
because of the F-Holes (Fancy Holes!) that decorate it. These are called such because they give the instrument a
fancier sound, and you will find these on a number of stringed instruments that are generally considered fancy.
If you wish to give a fancy instrument a 'guitar' sound, you will have to carve a traditional guitar sound hole into it.
This can be done with a pen knife and some elbow grease.
* * *
Q: Cody, can you tell me how to play negro music on my guitar?
I asked my dad but he just brought out the belt :(
A: The correct term is negroid music. I'm sure if you bring it up this way,
your dad will be more than happy to help you.
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Q: My acoustic/electric has a battery that can only be changed if you de-string the guitar
and reach in and perform surgery through the hole. However apparently you also need to have
4-year old girl hands. Tell me what I'm doing wrong.
A: Sounds like a chinese knock-off to me. I've seen it a thousand times. The WGA (World Guitar Association!)
makes sure that all guitars can be serviced and played only by people 12 and up. Anything that caters to
a person of a lesser age than that is bootleg and most likely lacking a WGA (World Guitar Association!)
seal of approval.
WARNING: If ANY of your guitars DO NOT have a WGA (World Guitar Association!) seal of approval
somewhere on the body, neck, or inside the sound hole, you have a bootleg guitar.
Buy only WGA (World Guitar Association!) approved products.
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Q: I don't play the guitar, I play the ukulele. Have I gone as far with this goddamn
faggot piece of shit as I can go?
A: It is well documented that the ukulele was invented on April Fool's Day as a goof. I cannot
suggest using one for anything other than fooling gullible fools. Hawaiians may seem to get a kick out of it,
but this is just because they celebrate April Fool's Day all year round.
* * *
Q: Will you teach me how to press down three strings with my middle/ring finger
without muting the high e string my accident?
A: The best way to remedy this would be to shrink your hands slightly. Obviously this is impossible,
but I do have a special trick that can help achieve similar effect! First off, you should keep your fretting
hand warm. If your hands are cold, they're going to be bigger, because water (which makes up a good amount
of the fluid in your hands!) expands the colder it gets. Second, stick an end of duct tape on the palm of your
fretting hand, pull as much as possible, and tape all down your arm. This will pull the skin of your fingers
back ever so slightly, making them slender enough to fret better.
* * *
Q: Hey can girls play guitar too? I always see them holding them like taylor swift but
can they really play them like boys?
A: Women fingers have notably less meat to them than man fingers. Women fingers are mostly
fatty tissue and bone, like their breasts. Also like their breasts, their fingers will firm up a week
or so before their menstrual cycle. This is the only time women are able to play the guitar
near-comparable to a man.
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Q: I play lefty. One of my friends who is a guitar teacher came over one night and started playing my
leftie stringed guitar beautifully. He wasn't left-handed or any punchline thing like that either.
A: His eyes are probably lefty, not his hands. This is to say, that his left eye developed in the right socket,
and his right eye developed in his left socket. Essentially, he is his own human mirror,
thus he doesn't need a mirror to play lefty guitar.
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Q: I don't really know how to "play" any songs, but I used to listen to songs and play along by ear.
I actually got pretty good at a few! :) What do you think of this method of learning to play guitar?
A: I do not recommend playing by ear at all. As we all know from science, every set
of ears hears differently,
much like every set of eyes sees color differently-- what looks blue to me might look green to you, yet you
call it blue because that's the name you've learned to call it. Just like that, notes in the musical spectrum
jumble around from person to person. Suffice to say, when you are playing by ear, it might sound
good to your ears, but incredibly wrong to another person's. Only through reading the proper
TAB (Tablature!) or sheet music for a given piece will you accurately be able to play it.
* * *
Q: Virtuoso Cody, I'm interested in incorporating chordal and harmonic counterpoint
in my strummed guitar music, but I'm having trouble with establishing horizontal
continuity in my melody with the strummed style without the melody blending
too much with the harmony, as I don't have a second guitarist available,
this can be difficult. Can you offer some tips?
A: I understand where you're coming from. When I was 8 years old I ran into similar problems
establishing horizontal continuity within my chordal and harmonic counterpoint. My advice would be
to invest in a two-track recorder, so that you can play over yourself.
Though you may be tempted, I'd advise against purchasing a loop pedal, as loop pedals can often times
bombard a guitar cable with musical information, wearing it out prematurely.
* * *
Q: Could you tell me which notes or combinations of notes cause girls to remove their
underpants? Also, what is the best way to integrate a backwards satanic message into a live
A: Nothing in the minor key, that's for sure. Though approximately 1 in 250 males respond positively
to the sound of the minor key, 0 in 1 women respond positively to the minor key. I would suggest
sticking to playing single notes in different octaves. Doing this fast enough around the fretboard
will cause a 3-D effect in the female mind, which will impress them.
Though it is likely that at every show you play there will be someone sneakily recording it,
that percentage coupled with the percentage of people who would think to reverse
said recording is next to nil. Suffice to say, backwards satanic messages are best incorporated
into a live acoustic performance by playing your song backwards, but singing your messages forwards.
* * *
Q: I'm left-handed. I didn't realize that I was playing all of my chords upside down
(not inverted, just wrong) last time I tried to learn. How much of a difference does being a
lefty really make?
A: This is easily remedied. If you're reading tabs online, or sheet music, just read them in a mirror.
If you're improvising with a band, make sure you have a mirror near you that you can use to see
what they're doing.
Q: What if the band is left-handed also?
A: That's easy; if the band is left handed, you need a two-way mirror.
* * *
Q: How do you get dust off a guitar?
A: In my experience, if you have masking tape, you don't need a can of compressed air.
Simply cover as much of the affected area with masking tape as you can, let it set over night,
and then pull them off. The visible dust will come off with the masking tape, along with the
small particles of dust deeply embedded in the wood grain which can ruin your guitar's
* * *
Q: What have minor chords ever done to you?
A: Nothing, they're legitimate chords, but just because they're chords
they should be played. What should be played on the guitar is what is good to the ear.
Minor chords are bad to the ear. Things that are bad to the ear should be avoided.
Go ahead and make all the noise music you want with minor chords to entertain
you and your hipster fringe deadbeat friends, but me and the rest of the world
don't want to hear it.
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Q: Theres a man with a beard who lives in the subway and I think he sometimes plays
minor chords. Should I tell him about major chords, or should I keep your lessons to myself?
A: The man you speak of got where he is as a result of playing only minor chords.
of such a revelation will only send him in a blind, smelly rage that could end yours and
many other lives. Stay safe and take the bus instead.
* * *
Q: Is a banjo a guitar? my friends argued about this! and what of a ukulele?
A: Banjos are special guitars designed to bring the wisdom of guitar music
to backwoods, inbred minds that lack the appreciation of gentle tones.
* * *
Q: My sound hole is square, should I give up on guitar or do you have
recommendations on working with non-circular sound holes?
A: Good question. Circular sound holes produce sine-wave sound frequencies
and square sound holes produce square-wave sound frequencies.
This will affect your tone.
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