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A symbol used to represent the ring finger (annular finger) on the picking hand. It is part of the pima labelling system and is an abbreviation of the Spanish word 'Anular'.

Synonymous With: Anular

Full Article on: pima labelling

The second thickest and second lowest sounding string on a guitar. Named so because it is tuned to 'A' in standard tuning.

Synonymous With: 5th string

Full Article on: string labelling

A manufacturers term for abalone that has been cut into sheets for use as decoration

A manufacturers term for abalone that has been cut into sheets for use as decoration

A symbol requesting that emphasis should be placed on a note to make it louder and more pronounced

A symbol used in standard music notation to indicate a rise or fall in pitch of one semitone. The symbol can be a sharp, flat or a natural sign. Once applied, an accidental remains in effect until countered by another accidental.

See Also: naturalise

Full Article on: accidentals

  1. Short for acoustic guitar, a guitar that uses a hollow body to resonate sound instead of electrical amplification.
  2. Referring to sound or hearing.

A guitar that uses a hollow body to resonate sound instead of electrical amplification.

The characteristics of an environment that effect its ability to transmit sound.

A paint that is used on guitar finishes.

In the context of guitar, the action is the distance between the strings and the fretboard. However, it generally refers to the force required to produce a note on an instrument. A lower action usually makes the guitar easier play but produces less sustain.

Refers to circuitry that alters a signal before it reaches its destination. Active elctronics can be used in pickups and preamplifiers.

See Also: active pickups

Pickups that use electricity to boost the signal being sent to the amplifier. They require a battery that is located in a control cavity on back of the guitar.

A type of hardwood that is used in the manufacture of solid-bodied guitars.

Derived from the symbols for aluminium, nickel and cobalt (Al, Ni & Co). It is a magnetic alloy containing iron, aluminium and nickel, in addition to cobalt, copper or titanium. It can be used in loudspeaker construction or in the manufacture of pickups.

Looking at modes that are derived from the same scale but having each mode in the same key. It provides a good way of seeing the different interval patterns.

Synonymous With: parallel view

Full Article on: modes - part 2

A strict alternation between downstrokes and upstrokes, often starting on a downstroke.

Full Article on: exercises - alternate picking

Short for amplifier. A device that increases the strength of the electrical signal coming from the guitars pickups. Stronger signal, louder sound. There are two main types of amplifier: the combo amp (combinations amplifier) and the amplifier stack.

Synonymous With: Amplifier

Full Article on: amplifiers

The amplifier base, in which controls can be set, that increases the electrical signal. It is attached to a loudspeaker cabinet to form an amplifier stack.

Synonymous With: head

A metal frame that is used to mount amplifers for use in large stage performances.

Generic term for the various forms of amplifier.

Full Article on: amplifiers

A device that increases the strength of the electrical signal coming from the guitars pickups. Stronger signal, louder sound. There are two main types of amplifier: the combo amp (combinations amplifier) and the amplifier stack.

Full Article on: amplifiers

A form of amplifier where the signal is amplified in an amp head and then sent through loudspeakers. The loudspeakers are kept in a separate unit called a cabinet.

A moderately slow tempo, approximately 70-80bpm.

See Also: bpm

The places on the strings that dampen the sound when touched. As opposed to a node (where the harmonics are produced).

The Spanish term for ring finger (annular finger) on the picking hand. It is part of the pima labelling system, abbreviated by the symbol 'a'.

Synonymous With: a

See Also: pulgar, indice, medio, chico

Full Article on: pima labelling

A technique used by classical guitarists in which a picking hand finger plucks a string and follows straight through to the adjacent string, on which, it rests.

Synonymous With: rest stroke

A guitar body that has a curved top. The term is usually used to describe acoustic or semi-acoustic guitars and distinguish them from flat top varieties.

A chord sounded by rolling the thumb/plectrum across the strings. It should not sound like a strum or single-note line, more like a cross between the two. Tabs will indicate whether it is an up or down stroke via arrows.

Full Article on: arpeggiated chords

When each individual note of a chord is played separately, either in continuous succession or a more complex pattern. The word comes from the Italian language and means 'broken chord'.

Full Article on: arpeggio

Generally refers to any harmonic that is produced whilst fretting a note. The term is sometimes used specifically for touched harmonics.

See Also: natural harmonic, tapped harmonic

Full Article on: artificial harmonics

A type of hardwood that is used in the manufacture of solid-bodied guitars.

A name given to a metal plate that was used to cover the bridge on vintage Fender telecaster guitars.

An instruction in written music indicating that you should increase the duration of a note by one half. For example, an eighth note (depicted by a quaver) with an augmentation dot should last for 3 sixteenth notes (which equals one and a half eighth notes).

See Also: quaver, crotchet, eighth note, sixteenth note

Full Article on: note duration

A perfect interval that has been increased by a semitone. For example, a perfect fifth is an interval of 7 semitones, therefore an augmented fifth is an interval of 8 semitones.

A chord consisting of a major triad with a sharpened fifth. For example, an A major triad uses the 1st, 3rd and 5th notes of the A major scale (A C# E), therefore an 'A augmented' chord would contain the notes A, C# and F.

Full Article on: augmented chords

A slang word for guitar. The word guitar is derived from the Spanish word guitarra. It is a stringed instrument that traditionally has 6 strings (although there are such things as 7, 8 and 12 string guitars) and can be plucked or strummed. Guitars can be acoustic, semi-acoustic or electric. Acoustics and semi-acoustics consist of a hollow body. Semi-acoustics and electrics are played with amplifiers via pickups.

Synonymous With: Guitar