Todd's "JustinGuitar Easy Guitar Songbook" Thread

In the tradition of greats such as @alexisduprey and @jkahn, I’ve decided to play through an entire songbook. In my case, I’m starting with Justin’s Easy Guitar Songbook and its 101 Easy Songs. Once I’ve worked my way through this one, I plan to move on to the Beginner Songbook, Vol. 1. and Vol. 2.

The first few modules, at least, are already pretty straightforward for me, but, I figure I can learn something from practicing any song. So, let’s begin!

Links To Each Song’s Post:

  1. “Give Peace a Chance” - John Lennon and the Plastic Ono Band. (Posted 2023-06-25)
  2. “Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way” - Waylon Jennings (Posted 2023-06-30)

For my first performance, we have “Give Peace a Chance” by John Lennon and the Plastic Ono Band. I was practicing the songs from Module 1, the easiest of songs, tonight, and found this one requires a non-standard tuning (de-tuned by one semitone). So, instead of de-tuning and re-tuning my guitar, I decided to bang out a “performance” of this one while my guitar was properly de-tuned.

So, this may be a bit rough. Any constructive criticism is welcome. One thing I found, as I played this through a few times… for some reason my count gets off during the second time in the chorus. I don’t know why that is… if there is something odd about the second time through the chorus, or if there is something odd about me. lol.


Hi Todd,

nice you feel inspired by other great folks of the community to work yourself through one of Justin’s books! It’ll definitely pay off and you’ll learn a lot on your way! And you actually did a good start here. Rhythm was nice and steady and you caught up good after missing this one chord change. :+1:
Also, it’s always a good idea to play along to the original, it helps so much getting into the groove. And you were in clearly, not only tapping your foot but rocking your body along. This is something I do very often too, when I’m completely in. :smiley:
Very well done! :slight_smile: :clap: I’m looking forward to what’s coming next.

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Thanks, Lisa!

Yeah, I think, one way in which this whole thing will help, is that I’ve gotten into a rut where I practice all of the skills that are included in my current lesson, and I practice my handful of songs and riffs that I keep as my little repertoire, but I haven’t really tried to play a new song in a while. I think that by learning new songs, even if they are simple ones, it’s a good way to keep working on my rhythm and strumming.

Also, with that song in particular, I played the simple, D D D D strum. If I want to get closer to the original, I would be doing a B D B D B D B D (bass note, then strum the higher notes on the ‘And’). I tried that, but at that speed, I kept slowly transitioning into just playing all down 8th note strums… and I guess that makes sense since all down 8th note strums that was a skill in the Module 8 practice, so I’m more used to that. So, I could do some practice on the B-D strum.

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A good effort there Todd. To me you did lose your tempo a few times but it did get more consistent towards the end.

I think the best thing you can do to improve your rhythm consistency is when you are listening to music tap/move your feet to the beat, feel that rhythm, get that groove in to your body.

And some might say, practice your 4 beat strumming, slowly, with a metronome. Start real slow and then build up speed over time.

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“Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way” by Waylon Jennings. A very simple song, alternating bars of A and D, quarter note down strums. Capo on 2nd fret to match the original recording.

Two songs down, 99 to go!


Hello Todd, oh wow, big plans :astonished:. 101 songs?!
I’m sure you’ll learn lots of good stuff along the way and I hope, you’ll have lots of fun, too :smiley:.

I’ve got the Beginner Songbook, Vol. 1, but use it only sporadically and only play the songs I really like :grin:.

I’m looking forward to hearing more from you and your Songbook project :smiley:. Great idea :+1:!

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