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What You'll Learn

Establish a comprehensive overview of the fundamental pillars of music theory.
How to practice and apply music theory concepts across your guitar neck
Broaden your understanding of how music works
Learn how scales, chords, and arpeggios all interlink

About This Course

First off, you may be wondering, what exactly is music theory and why should I care? Music theory allows you to understand why and how notes, chords and all musical devices work – or why they don’t work.

By learning music theory, you will be able to manipulate your music to provoke any flavour you could possibly want. You will be able to build any scale, any chord, any arpeggio and also understand which variation of these devices will be the most appropriate in any given setting.

Typically, guitarists who don’t know music theory will resort to the same assortment of notes, chords, scales, licks and tricks. This course will help you break out of that pattern.

Navigating the vast world of music theory can be a daunting task without proper guidance. With an overload of conflicting methods and approaches available online, it’s easy to feel lost and confused. This masterclass is here to cut through the noise and give you all the structure you need.

“Essential Theory For Guitarists” is perfectly tailored for guitar players who already possess some familiarity with basic principles of music theory, but still sense gaps in their understanding.

Course Content

Introduction: Primer
This section establishes a solid understanding of intervals and I’ll show you my methods of interval visualisation across the neck.
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Summary
This section will be a short overview and summary of the course, what you’ve learned and where to go from here.
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Essential Theory For Guitarists

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Frequently Asked Questions

If your questions aren't answered below, please chat with me.
Getting StartedPlans & Pricing
Is Fretwise right for you?

Fretwise is designed specifically for intermediate to advanced guitarists who find themselves at a crossroads in their musical journey.

  • Do you often feel lost or uncertain about how to progress, and perhaps are stuck in the ‘intermediate plateau’?
  • Are you unsure how to practice effectively?
  • Do you want structure and accountability?
  • Have you been playing for years but you want to fill in the gaps in your understanding of the guitar?
  • Are you inspired to play in the style of Darryl Syms?
  • Do you want a clear and concise learning pathway without all of the fluff and boring instruction from some YouTube teachers?

If you’ve answered yes to any of these then you’re in the right place!

What makes Fretwise better than other guitar lesson sites?

So many things!

  • I’m a firm believer of quality over quantity. Many lesson sites have many hundreds, even thousands of lessons and sometimes it feels like a game of numbers. There’s already an overwhelming amount of lessons on YouTube, so I’m here to “cut the b.s” and deliver the juicy goodness in the quickest and most effective way possible. You’ll spend less time getting lost, and more time on effective practice and learning!
  • I recognise that teaching is a skill in itself beyond just being a great guitar player. Teaching is a skill I’ve been developing since my mid-teens, and not only in the area of music. I’ve taught thousands of one-on-one lessons, worked in schools, taught group classes in multiple venues, and helped millions of people via my YouTube channel. What you see on this website brings all of those skills together.
  • I actually break down and discuss topics thoroughly, with demonstrations! Unlike others, I provide both video and written lesson notes in intricate detail, plus the most accurate tabs you will find on the internet.
  • I settle for nothing less than best. Everything about this platform has been carefully put together and is constantly being improved.
  • My lessons accommodate beginners, intermediate, and advanced players. No matter what your genre or style interests are, there’s something that every guitar player can take from this platform.
  • Fretwise isn’t just a place that you come to learn, but also a place where you can get social in a community of like-minded guitar enthusiasts from around the world. Connect, get feedback, discuss, and grow together!

The most common thing my students tell me, is that they’ve made more progress with Fretwise in a few months than in years of trying to teach themselves.

What’s included in each masterclass?

At Fretwise, each masterclass is designed to provide you with a comprehensive and enriching learning experience. Here’s what you can expect to find in every masterclass:

  • Video Instruction: Concise video lessons with on-screen tabs and diagrams to visually guide you through each topic.
  • Written Transcripts: Full written transcripts of every lesson, complete with diagrams and tabs available for download in both PDF and Guitar Pro formats.
  • Backing Tracks: Where applicable, backing tracks are provided to enhance your practice and enable you to apply what you’ve learned in a musical context.
  • Structured Learning: Fretwise classes are meticulously structured to help you build your skills progressively. You’ll find a clear path from fundamental concepts to more advanced techniques.
  • Practice Ideas: I offer practice ideas and exercises to reinforce your understanding of the material and ensure you’re making consistent progress.
  • Progress Tracking: The Fretwise learning platform includes tools to track your progress, making it easy for you to monitor your development and set achievable goals.
  • Support: Take advantage of the community forums to ask any of your questions or discuss challenges that you encounter on your journey.

With these resources and features, each masterclass on Fretwise is designed to empower you with the knowledge, skills, and the support you need to excel on your guitar playing journey.

How long should you expect to spend on each masterclass?

Fretwise has been developed with the understanding that every guitarist progresses at their own pace. Here’s a general guideline to help you plan your learning journey with my masterclasses:

Time Commitment: On average, it takes about 3 months of frequent study to really grasp the material covered in my masterclasses. While the instructional time for each course typically lasts between 2-3 hours, I recommend that you watch and read through the provided resources multiple times to fully absorb the information.

Lesson Duration: Each individual lesson is designed to be no longer than 15 minutes in length. This provides you with bite-sized chunks of information that you can study and practice over the course of many days, without feeling confused and overwhelmed of your task at hand.

Practice Along: To maximize your learning experience, I encourage you to practice along with your instructor Darryl. Repetition and hands-on practice are key to solidifying your skills and understanding of the content.

Remember, there’s no rush when it comes to mastering the guitar. Take your time, focus on the details, and practice regularly to see steady improvement. Fretwise is designed to support your journey, whether you progress quickly or prefer a more gradual approach.

How frequently are masterclasses updated?

Masterclasses are a big undertaking. I aim to bring you updates to Fretwise resources about once a month. However, creating entirely new masterclasses is a more extensive process and can take between 4-6 months to complete.

It’s important to note that my main focus isn’t just to flood you with “thousands of lessons” like many other guitar lesson websites. Fretwise is not designed to be an endless sea of resources, which typically leaves guitar players feeling as lost as they were on YouTube. I believe in quality over quantity.

Is Fretwise suitable for beginners?

Some courses are marked as a difficulty: Beginners, or All Levels. These are suitable for guitar players of all levels and backgrounds. A great place to start for every guitar player if in doubt is the CAGED Fretboard Visualisation Masterclass. This course is designed to take you from a beginner player to an intermediate one, which will open the pathway for more intermediate level courses on Fretwise.

If this is your first time ever learning to play guitar and you are starting from zero, then Fretwise is not suitable for you just yet. I recommend you familiarise yourself with guitar basics through a few lessons with a guitar teacher or some YouTube videos for beginners. Once you feel like you can play some basic tunes and know how to move your fingers across the fretboard, come back and start on CAGED.

Fretwise Premium membership vs. Single Course purchases: Which is right for you?

Fretwise offers two distinct options to suit your learning needs: Fretwise Premium Membership and Single Class Purchases. Here’s a breakdown of the key differences:

Single Course Purchases:

  • Class-Specific Access: When you opt for Single Course Purchases, you gain lifetime access to the course(s) you’ve purchased. This option is ideal if you are specifically interested in a particular topic only and don’t care about the premium perks.
  • Community Forum: By purchasing a course, you become part of the Fretwise community, and will have access to the community forum. This is where you can ask questions or simply read and join discussions, connecting with fellow guitarists on a similar journey to yours.
  • Progress Tracking: You’ll be able to monitor your progress and always know where you left off, bringing structure and a sense of achievement into your practice.

Fretwise Premium Membership:

  • All-Access Pass: With a Premium Membership, you gain unrestricted access to the extensive library of masterclasses, bonus resources, and even some exclusive gear discounts.
  • Comprehensive Learning: Enjoy the flexibility to explore a wide range of topics, techniques, and resources to fill any potential gaps in your knowledge and evolve your skill level.
  • Community and Progress Tracking: Like Single Course Purchases, a premium membership also grants access to the vibrant Fretwise community forum and progress tracking features. Connect with fellow guitar enthusiasts, share experiences, and monitor your growth.
  • Video Exchange: Post videos of your progress and playing, and receive personalised feedback from your instructor, Darryl.
  • Cost Effective: A Fretwise Premium membership offers the best value for money, providing you with an extensive range of resources and added perks for less than the cost of a single course purchase.

Choosing between these two options depends on your learning style and goals. If you’re eager to explore a wide range of topics and access additional resources, a premium membership offers the most comprehensive experience. Remember, you may not know what you don’t know.

Whichever option you choose, Fretwise is committed to supporting your guitar journey, ensuring you receive the guidance and resources you need to excel.

Is Fretwise worth the money?

Absolutely! You will struggle to find a better and more cost or time effective investment in your guitar education. Here’s why:

  • Affordability: Each of our masterclasses are priced more competitively than a single one-hour private lesson with Darryl or any top-tier instructor. This means you’re getting high-quality, in-depth instruction at a fraction of the cost of traditional lessons.
  • Fretwise Premium: Our premium membership starts at just $18 per month which is less than $0.60 per day!

But it’s not just about the money – it’s also about not wasting your precious time.

Signing up to Fretwise removes the need for guesswork, providing you with clear daily and weekly objectives to enhance your guitar skills effectively.

Simply put: spend your time or your money – whichever is less valuable to you.

Can I cancel my membership at any time?

Of course! Cancelling your membership is completely hassle-free. Simply log in to your account on the Fretwise learning platform, go to your profile settings > subscription > cancel subscription. Your membership will stay active for the remainder of your billing cycle, but you will not be charged again for renewal.

Should you wish to resume your membership, it’s just as easy. Log in to your account on getfretwise.com to reactivate your subscription. Your account will have saved all your progress, so you can pick up right where you left off.

Is there a free trial available?

I offer free samples of some course content, which you will receive via email if you sign up on the respective course landing pages on getfretwise.com. This way you can get a clear insight into my teaching style to determine if Fretwise is a good fit for you.

Whilst I don’t offer a free trial for my Fretwise Premium membership, I do provide a generous 14-day money-back-guarantee for all purchases! If, for any reason (though it’s quite unlikely), you’re not satisfied with the resources and materials on Fretwise, you can request a full refund.

Find out more from our terms of service.

Get FREE Samples

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Sign up to receive free lesson samples of: Essential Theory For Guitarists, straight to your inbox!
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