Introduction to the Guitar Fretboard

The String Names

The 6 Guitar Strings: E, B, G, D, A, E

The String Numbers

High E string = 1st string
B string = 2nd string
G string = 3rd string
D string = 4th string
A string = 5th string
Low E string = 6th string

Memorizing the String Names

Low to High
(6th string to 1st string):

Eddie Ate Dynamite, Good Bye Eddie
Every Acid Dealer Gets Busted Eventually
Elephants And Donkeys Grow Big Eears

High to Low
(1st string to 6th string):

Eddie Begins Going Down Avenue E
Every Beautiful Guitar Deserves Amps Everyday

The Problem with Fretboard Diagrams

Have you tried to learn from fretboard diagrams like these? These diagrams won’t help you play the one, specific note you need – right now – at a rehearsal or on stage!

These diagrams have too much information!

It’s nearly impossible to learn from these grids.

all-notes-on guitar-fretboard-sharps


The Musical Alphabet on the Guitar

The Musical Alphabet

In the musical alphabet, only 7 letters are used: A through G.


To get all 12 pitches, you need to add in sharps or flats:

A A# B C C# D D# E F F# G G#

A Bb B C Db D Eb E F Gb G Ab


Finding Notes Using the Musical Alphabet

You can slide your finger up or down the fretboard on a single string, one fret at a time.
This lets you “count” the half steps as you move from fret to fret.


  • You can find any pitch you want with this technique.
  • But, it’s TOO SLOW to find a note right when you need to play it.
  • You can use this method in your practice room.
  • Never try this at a rehearsal or on stage!!

Introductory Videos

Before you start my “Conquer the Fretboard” method to learn every note on your guitar, here are some introductory videos to get you started.

Intro 1:
The String Names

Intro 2:
The Fret Numbers

Intro 3:
The 12th Fret

Intro 4:
Going Past the 12th Fret

Intro 5:
The Dots on the Fretboard