I can think of 4 reasons to learn to read guitar tabs. Let me get right to the point. I’ll get more involved in a few sentences. For me, it breaks up the boredom of playing the same stuff over and over. Sometime, even I need a breather from Jimi Hendrix and SRV vibe. So lately I have been experimenting more with the online moving, play along guitar tabs for several new songs. New songs for me to play. Oh yeah, I know them well, just never got around to learning them. If you remember, I started playing the electric guitar almost 5 years ago. I’m 56 years old. I did not sit and play the guitar in the parking lot at school. I was a ‘gear-head’, I liked Cars and Harley Davidson Motorcycles and listening to Jimi Hendrix, Johnny Winter and Led Zepplin on my home stereo, real loud.
I bit off the biggest chunk right off the bat though. Play Jimi Hendrix. Play Stevie Ray Vaughan. So, what I’m saying, I did not even try to play some of the 3 chord cool oldies like “Suzy Q” by Creedence Clearwater Revival.
Essentially, While I’m making myself ‘marketable’, I’m really picking up some valuable mojo or vibe. Therefore improving my overall blues guitar playing skills, but I having a lot of fun by breaking up my usual lengthy routine, while adding to my limited song list.
#1. Break up usual routine.
#2. Learn new songs.
#3. Improve sight reading guitar tabs.
#4. Improve chops
Suzy Q was written in the 1960’s. Songs like Suzy Q, Sweet Home Alabama, Midnight Train, Gloria, Sweet Home Alabama are really great oldies to learn? They are the rhythms and beats that started Rock and Roll. Basically the rhythms of the oldies are what distinguishes one song in 12 bar 1-4-5 pattern from another song in the same 12 bar 1-4-5 pattern, even in the same key. It is pretty shocking for someone who was taught lead first. I have only studied chords and etching them in granite in my muscle memory. As my muscle memory improves, I can change chords faster and faster.
Practice your guitar a lot and often and your muscles will memorize the patterns faster. That is all there is to it, practice the guitar, so why not have some fun? I’m curious what you folks do the break your routines?