Reggae guitar curriculum?

I’m wanting to get into Reggae guitar and am not finding much luck content wise on the internet and hard to find local guitar teachers in Vancouver, BC who have a bit of experience. Does anyone have any learning curriculum to look into?

I know Justin has How to play Lively Up by Bob Marley, which is a great start, but looking for some lessons to build up more of a foundation on techniques and style.

The only others I found where this website:
and active melody has a a nice lesson for rhythm and lead:

also found an amazing video from the BBC Rockschool:

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Hey my dude! Ska, reggae, funk, and folk are the styles I’m most attracted to. I’ll check out that link you shared. I’m encountering a lot of the same problems you are.

Reggae is actually one of the places I have a lot of gripes about the app. There’s also literally no ska. Most importantly, because the app almost always has you strumming on downbeats instead of upbeats. It sounds ok, but one of the key aspects of both reggae and ska is that it’s always focused on the upbeat.

1 AND 2 AND 3 AND 4 AND (repeat).


1 E AND 2 AND 3 AND 4 AND (repeat).

The upside is both reggae and ska tend to not be super intense on guitar. Not a rule, just that guitar tends to not be the focus.

If you’re using the beginner app, some other songs to check out:

  • Lots more Bob Marley
  • Lots of Inner Circle
  • The Tide is High (Blondie)
  • Don’t Worry, Be Happy (Bobby McFerrin)

I’d really love to see some ska, Toots and the Maytals, etc.

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Hi @msarro,
Ah I don’t have justins app, but will look into it.
Yeah the rhythm guitar is such an essential part, especially with the drums and bass. Its also really interesting reading “the how to play reggae” web site regarding many sub styles. The traditional reggae from my understanding is mostly down strokes but on the ‘and’ like you mentioned. Then you have all new newer style playing the up more like ska. Just would be nice to have more reading on it.

It seems alot of blues is in the reggae lead guitar, Justin’s pentatonic and blues coarse have been helpfully theory wise.

I found some more content to look into:

and Xyan Guitar (Seems like alot of good stuff here, some ska too)

I want to get into funk more aswell! Tomo Fujita at guitar wisdom has some funkyness going on over there too

I used to love ska when I was a teenager although never really tried to play it. I did used to play Rosie by Joan Armatrading (not ska/reggae, but it does have a similar beat). Anyway, I think it’s such a distinct guitar style I think it would really merit a lesson by Justin and would be really interesting to learn more about.

I was schooled out of a position of unaware-ness some years by erstwhile Moderator (on the old forum) TB-AV that reggae is played with DOWN strums on the off beats.

Reggae is very like funk, R&B etc in that the guitar is playing lots of small shape chords as ‘chips’.

Not sure if you’ve come across:


Thanks @Socio
What a great overview

@headsmell you might want to check out the website for Art of Reggae. It mentions that they will be adding complete courses and one shots, taught by Tuff, on reggae guitar playing, early to mid 2022.

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giphy - 2021-12-02T164314.006

Haha, beat me to it - he’s great!
Looking forward to them adding Guitar to their site, it’s one aspect of playing guitar I’m short of.

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Found two more great sources:
Ray Hitchins:

Steve Golding:

Golding has a couple youtube snippets from his coarse on Guitar Control
Reggae Roots Guitar Secrets

Think I’m going to get Goldings coarse after finishing Hitchens, let me know if anyone has done Goldings coarse before!