Reviews from onThe Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar Exercises
Author: Hemme B Luttjeboer


*****A big thumbs up Hemme. July 8, 2011

By Darin Scott, Tune-Up Guitar Magazine

It is an honor and it brings me great pleasure to review my good friend Hemme Luttjeboer's latest book. I have known Hemme since our days as students at The Guitar Institute of Technology/Musicians Institute in Hollywood,CA in 1985 and 1986. Since then Hemme has achieved considerable success as music educator and music transcriber with more than 250 books to his credit.

So this brings us to the subject of Hemme's latest great book "The Complete Idiots Guide to Guitar Exercises". I have to say that this book, that also comes with a CD containing 150 tracks of the exercises, is probably the most comprehensive collection of finger exercises, scales, sequences and melodic motifs. Plus the book is laid out in a very logical fashion that is easy to follow for guitarists of all levels. There is something in this book for everyone and for the price of 21.95 it is a genuine bargain. I recommend this book but don't just take my word. The book has also received glowing endorsements by guitarists such as Peter Frampton, Alex Lifeson, Jennifer Batten, Albert Lee, Mike Stern, Steve Howe, Randy Bachman and Mike Mushok.


*****Easy to follow guitar exercises, June 21, 2011

By James

I agree with the previous reviews and as such would just add the value of
the "P" words Perseverance, planned practice, and patience this book by Hemme will make for a stronger and more versatile player in all styles of music. Having a music store & teaching facility for 45 years I can highly recommend this book as a great value of both one's time and money.
Dean Irving (Sound of Music Academy, Abbotsford, BC)


**** Great for beginners like me. May 30, 2011

By Stephanie W. (Hudson, FL, USA)

I have always wanted to learn to play the guitar and after 47yrs. I decided to try it. After only a week, I have noticed a difference in how my fingers move on the fretboard. I am so glad I found this book. I can't tell you if I will ever play great, but this book is easy to understand, has great diagrams to follow, and should help anyone play better.


***** Great for all levels! April 20, 2011

By Daniel

I just got this book yesterday. So far I am extremely impressed with the wide variety of exercises for every level. Whether you are a beginner, and just working on improving your dexterity, or you're a professional looking to keep up your chops, I think this book will help. This is the kind of book that you will keep on your music stand at all times, and will refer back to time and time again!

I look forward to diving further in and enjoying practicing while improving my playing!


**** Excellent Book, January 14, 2011

By James Seaberry

I usually stay clear of books that offer guidance to all levels of participants in an endeavor, but this one really does work. I consider myself a guitarist of fairly high knowledge and experience, though my playing ability is subject to debate, so I try to find books that target a specific, advanced subject. This book, however, is a challenge for anyone of any level. It is very well written, well laid-out, easy to follow, and fun. There is a lot of material that i did not need to learn, yet there were exercises over unchallenging material that in themselves were challenging!!! Very, very good book!! Anyone with a beginner, intermediate level of experience will want to go through this page by page. Those of higher expertise, heed my warning: don't skip over the stuff you already know!!!


***** Best In Breed, January 6, 2011

By Eric C. Petersen (Stanfordville, NY) 

This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar Exercises (Paperback)

I've worked my way through several other exercise books and find this the best; others might have flashier titles, but this delivers the goods for an advancing guitarist. All these types of books pretty much cover the same ground - basic theory, intervals, scales, chords, arpeggios, etc. plus a good dose of four or eight bar play-along examples with an accompanying CD to get your fingers moving. All these books are good as some form of structured practice advances the ball; what makes this book exceptional are the practice examples - they are challenging enough to give one's brain and fingers a good workout, but above all they are fun to play and sound good. One wants to keep moving through this book to see what sonic goodies might lie ahead as well as new fingering patterns to pull the player out of the inevitable ruts we all get into. Other books I've used tend to be somewhat mechanical in their playing examples, using the same formulaic approach going through major, minor, d7 etc. scale and arp forms; this can get lame pretty fast and kill one's enthusiasm to practice. Not so with Luttjeboer's book; I'm about two-thirds of the way through it and each day look forward to cranking up my amp and getting further into it. Depending on a player's level of proficiency - mine, not so hot - a lot of time has to be spent with these types of books; it can take hours practicing one example to get the fingering down clean and build up speed, a big investment in time. Based on my experience with similar books this one is the best way to go - it's challenging, but not overly difficult, but above all fun to work with which keeps one's enthusiasm level up. It will definitely advance your playing skills, and the favorable mention given the book by the likes of Peter Frampton, Alex Lifeson, Steve Howe and others is a testament to the quality of thought that went into putting this together.


***** You WILL play better, October 6, 2010

By Joseph Harris

This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar Exercises (Paperback)

" The cover of this book contains an endorsement from Peter Frampton: "There are great idea-provoking exercises here that can benefit every guitar player!" Frampton speaks the truth! Even if you are guitar god on the level of Frampton, this book has a wealth of idea to offer you.

When I first picked up this book, I wasn't expecting anything beyond single-note diatonic sequences. Sure, the book has those, but it also offers loads of spidery chromatic exercises, chordal exercises (including seventh chords), jazz chord-melody, Travis picking and fingerstyle blues! The book also includes in-depth presentations on the music theory behind the exercises.

All the exercises are meticulously fingered. In addition to left-hand fingerings, the book offers right-hand pick directions; many of the exercises also include right-hand fingerings for fingerstyle players.

The table of contents is awesome. (I REALLY appreciate the fact that the CD track listings are not in the table of contents; I get so confused when publishers do that!) The glossary and index are also very helpful.

This book is appropriate for players at any level. Beginning students can easily understand the contents without the aid of a teacher. The book is thorough, and explains simple concepts such as how to hold the pick! Readers are sure to experience many "A-ha" moments, when the mystery of guitar starts to make sense.


***** Much More Than a Guitar Exercise Book, October 5, 2010

By Andrew DuBrock

This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar Exercises (Paperback)

Most people associate "exercises" with repetitive patterns and rote memorization--tasks that train fingers to dexterously play countless notes, but fail to teach underlying musical concepts or give students the tools to apply those exercises to "real world" situations. The Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar Exercises fulfills all these points by offering plenty of exercises to work the fingers while also explaining the theory behind them, then plugging these concepts into real songs.

The book is laid out in a progressive fashion. It starts with warmup exercises, and then teaches how chord shapes fit together all over the fretboard via the CAGED system. A thorough section on scales and arpeggios follows (over 100 pages!), and the book closes with a section on fingerpicking.

As a guitar publications editor for over 15 years, I highly recommend this book for anyone wanting to learn the fretboard more completely, increase their playing chops, or boost their music theory knowledge.


***** The Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar Exercises, July 12, 2010

By Hank

This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar Exercises (Paperback)

Very impressive book. Not just for beginners. Being a novice myself I found the practise exercises to be very helpful. All the illustrations are very helpful as well. Also great for those wanting to review music theory.


***** Not for idiots, June 29, 2010

By John Vanderwerf (Ottawa, ON Canada)

This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar Exercises (Paperback)

I bought this book because I was there when Hemme first learned to play guitar. I remember clearly that he diligently put into practice what he teaches in this book.

This book is not for idiots. It is for people who can follow clear instructions and have the desire and discipline to practice, practice, practice. Whether novice or proficient, if you practice these exercises your guitar playing will improve.


***** Unlocking The Guitar, June 8, 2010

By Henry Williamson “Hank Willimson” (Vancouver, BC)

This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar Exercises (Paperback)

Mr. Luttjeboer has done a great job of unlocking the guitar for anyone who has some playing experience. Chord diagrams
and notation with tab as well as a CD of all the musical examples. The CAGED system is used throughout giving the inquiring guitarist a system to organize the fretboard. The sections on harmonic and melodic minor scales and pentatonics will challenge you to get your chops together.


***** A nice balance of useful drills and practical info, June 1, 2010

By Thomas V. Nauman (Madison, WI)

This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar Exercises (Paperback)

I really like the way this book flows. For the beginner, the exercises fit logically into one another and offer enough incremental challenge to keep interest and enough clarity of intent to build understanding. It's not just your normal open-position chord strumming. It's got a good balance of dexterity drills, movable theoretical concepts that work in any key, and "approachable" instruction that's technical without being overbearing or intimidating. It's a collection of practical exercises that can be used as a method book for the beginner, or as a refresher/workout manual for the more experienced guitarist that wants to build speed and accuracy. It doesn't just teach you how to play scales and patterns, but helps you to really UNDERSTAND them and get them under your fingers so you can use them when you need to.


***** First class guitar book for beginners & advanced players!, May 31, 2010

By W. Aubert (Vancouver, BC Canada)

This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar Exercises (Paperback)

This is a huge book full of guitar tips and tricks to last me years.

There is a full range of cool exercises laid out neatly on the page with clear explanations on what the exercises are for and why they will help in improving your playing on the guitar - not just a bunch of exercises and liks leaving you to wonder why you should play all this stuff.

I really like how the author included all of the basic chords and how he shows how to move them up and down the neck. He has presented a very practical way of applying each of the chord shapes to songs instead of just teaching you one barre chord at a time. This really makes sense!

The language used is easy to understand but not aimed at little kids. It is for people who are serious about improving their playing. The exercises can be used by both beginners and advanced players and will really work for both. Each exercise is recorded on the CD that comes with the book, which is very handy. There are lots of melodic patterns to practice as well as the scale patterns to keep things interesting and fun.

This is a wonderful book for players who are looking to improve their technique on playing chords and melodies as well as picking technique. I highly recommend it. Check it out.


***** The Complete Idiots Guide to Guitar Exercises, May 26, 2010

By T. Bettles (Vancouver, BC)

This review is from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Guitar Exercises (Paperback)

I am finding the exercises to be very helpful in developing harmonic solos, and for increasing my finger dexterity and speed.

I have not even tackled the CAGED system yet!.

I would highly recommend it to any guitar player from beginner to expert. It truly is an excellent resource.