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Luke Peterson
Luke Peterson

Rock School Grade 1 Guitar Book: A Complete Guide for Beginner Guitarists



Rock School Grade 1 Guitar Book: A Comprehensive Guide




If you are a beginner guitarist who wants to improve your playing ability, expand your technical proficiency and learn some of the most iconic tracks from the world of popular music, then you might be interested in Rock School Grade 1 Guitar Book. This book contains everything you need to sit your Grade 1 exam - in one essential book. It's packed with essential techniques and theory for beginners picking up the fundamentals of guitar. In this article, we will explain what you'll learn at Grade 1, how to prepare for the exam, and where to buy your book.




rock school grade 1 guitar book



What you'll learn at Grade 1




The Grade 1 exam is for candidates who have been learning between six months to one year and have mastered the key basic skills. There are two types of exam available at Grade 1, either a Grade Exam or Performance Certificate. The Grade Exam consists of three performance pieces, technical exercises, sight reading or improvisation, ear tests and general musicianship questions. The Performance Certificate consists of five performance pieces only. Here are some of the skills you'll learn at Grade 1:


Double stops, staccato notes, accents and slides




Double stops are when you play two notes at the same time on adjacent strings. They can create a fuller sound and add harmony to your melodies. Staccato notes are when you play notes in a short and detached way, creating a crisp and rhythmic effect. Accents are when you emphasize certain notes by playing them louder or harder than others. They can add dynamics and expression to your playing. Slides are when you move from one note to another by sliding your finger along the string without lifting it off. They can create a smooth and continuous sound and connect different parts of your phrases.


Major and minor scales. Minor pentatonic scales and chords




Scales are sequences of notes that follow a certain pattern of intervals. They are the building blocks of melodies and solos. Major scales have a bright and happy sound, while minor scales have a dark and sad sound. Minor pentatonic scales are a simplified version of minor scales that have only five notes instead of seven. They are very common in rock, blues and pop music. Chords are combinations of three or more notes that sound good together. They are the foundation of harmony and rhythm. You'll learn how to play major and minor chords in different positions on the fretboard.


Playback and performance skills




Playback is when you listen to a recorded piece of music and play it back by ear or by reading notation or tablature. It helps you develop your listening skills, musical memory and accuracy. Performance is when you play a piece of music in front of an audience or an examiner. It helps you develop your confidence, expression and stage presence. You'll learn how to play three performance pieces from the Rock School Grade 1 book, which features a diverse range of contemporary repertoire from some of the world's most iconic artists, such as Bob Marley, Ed Sheeran and Jeff Buckley.


How to prepare for the Grade 1 exam




The Grade 1 exam is designed to assess your musical skills and knowledge in a comprehensive and enjoyable way. To prepare for the exam, you need to practice regularly and effectively, following these tips:


Choosing your performance pieces




You need to choose three performance pieces from the Rock School Grade 1 book, or two from the book and one free choice piece. The free choice piece can be any song that is appropriate for your level and style, as long as it meets the technical criteria of the grade. You should choose pieces that you like and that showcase your strengths and personality. You should also practice playing along with the backing tracks provided in the book or online, as they will help you improve your timing, groove and feel.


Practicing your technical exercises




You need to practice four sections of technical exercises: scales, chords, rhythm playing and lead playing. These exercises are designed to improve your technique, dexterity, coordination and musical understanding. You should practice them slowly and accurately at first, then gradually increase the speed and difficulty. You should also practice them in different keys, positions and variations, as you will be asked to play them randomly by the examiner.


Improving your sight reading or improvisation skills




You need to choose between sight reading or improvisation for this part of the exam. Sight reading is when you play a piece of music that you have never seen before by reading notation or tablature. Improvisation is when you create your own melody over a given chord progression or backing track. Both skills require a good knowledge of scales, chords, rhythms and musical styles. You should practice sight reading or improvisation every day, using different sources of material, such as books, magazines, websites or apps.


Developing your ear tests and general musicianship questions




You need to complete two ear tests: a pitch test and a rhythm test. The pitch test is when you identify whether two notes are the same or different in pitch. The rhythm test is when you clap back a rhythm that you hear. Both tests require a good sense of pitch and rhythm, which you can develop by listening to a lot of music and singing or tapping along. You also need to answer five general musicianship questions based on one of the pieces you performed. These questions cover topics such as musical terms, symbols, notation, theory and history. You can prepare for them by studying the information provided in the Rock School Grade 1 book or online.


Where to buy your Grade 1 book




The Rock School Grade 1 book is an essential resource for anyone who wants to take the Grade 1 exam or simply improve their guitar skills. Here are some of the benefits of buying the official Rock School book:


The benefits of buying the official Rock School book




  • It contains everything you need to sit your Grade 1 exam - in one essential book.



  • It features six performance pieces from a diverse range of contemporary repertoire from some of the world's most iconic artists.



  • It includes notation and tablature for all performance pieces and technical exercises.



  • It provides backing tracks and full mixes for all performance pieces online or on a CD.



  • It offers tips and advice on how to prepare for each section of the exam.



  • It gives access to online resources such as video tutorials, audio examples, additional exercises and more.



The differences between the UK and USA versions of the book




We have published two versions of this edition as shown in the pictures below; one version is more USA centric with some American English terms and background information referring billboard chart success rather than the UK charts. Please note that both versions of the book have everything you need for an exam and are both valid editions for when you enter for the assessment.


UK version USA version --- --- ![UK version](https://cloud.rslawards.com/shop/images/grade-books/guitar/electric/grade-one/cover.jpg) ![USA version](https://cloud.rslawards.com/shop/images/grade-books/guitar/electric/grade-one/cover-usa.jpg) How to order online or find a local retailer




order online or find a local retailer


You can order your Rock School Grade 1 book online from the official RSL Awards website or from other online retailers such as Amazon, eBay or Music Room. You can also find a local retailer near you by using the store locator tool on the RSL Awards website. Just enter your postcode or city and you'll see a list of nearby stores that sell Rock School books. You can also contact your local Rock School representative for more information and support.


Conclusion




Rock School Grade 1 Guitar Book is a comprehensive guide for beginner guitarists who want to improve their playing ability, expand their technical proficiency and learn some of the most iconic tracks from the world of popular music. It contains everything you need to sit your Grade 1 exam - in one essential book. It's packed with essential techniques and theory for beginners picking up the fundamentals of guitar. It also provides tips and advice on how to prepare for each section of the exam, as well as online resources such as video tutorials, audio examples, additional exercises and more. You can buy your Rock School Grade 1 book online or from a local retailer near you. If you are ready to rock, order your book today and start practicing for your exam!


FAQs




  • What is the difference between a Grade Exam and a Performance Certificate?



A Grade Exam consists of three performance pieces, technical exercises, sight reading or improvisation, ear tests and general musicianship questions. A Performance Certificate consists of five performance pieces only.


  • What are the benefits of taking a Rock School exam?



Taking a Rock School exam will not only improve your playing ability, but also expand your technical proficiency and give you a solid grasp of music theory. You will also receive a certificate and a report that recognize your achievement and provide feedback on your performance. You will also gain UCAS points for Grades 6-8 that can help you with your further or higher education.


  • How do I choose my free choice piece?



You can choose any song that is appropriate for your level and style, as long as it meets the technical criteria of the grade. You can find the technical criteria on the RSL Awards website or in the Rock School syllabus guide. You can also use the free choice wizard tool on the RSL Awards website to check if your song is suitable for the grade.


  • How do I book my exam?



You can book your exam online or by phone through the RSL Awards website or through your local Rock School representative. You can choose your preferred date, time and venue from a range of options available in your area. You can also change or cancel your booking up to 14 days before the exam date.


  • How do I access the online resources?



You can access the online resources by registering your book on the RSL Awards website using the unique code provided in your book. You will then be able to access video tutorials, audio examples, additional exercises and more for each performance piece and technical exercise in your book.


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