Welcome to your weekly 10-second tip.

If you struggle to play songs musically, this will help…


The 3-step rule is a simple rule that works like this:

If you are practising a piece of music, and the first three notes don’t sound wonderful…

…Do NOT let yourself move beyond this point.


If there is a buzz, a dead note, a break in the flow, a pause in rhythm, or anything not quite right…

Simply go back to the beginning and work on these three notes until they sound great.


Zone in and focus with extreme attention on what is going wrong and focus for at least 2-5 minutes on fixing it.

Is it the chord change, the finger movements, the flow between two notes, etc.?

Find out what it is and fix it…

You can use this for anything such as melodic pieces (i.e. fingerpicking songs, riffs, melodies, guitar solos) or for strumming where you make the first three strums sound clear and precise before playing the full bar.


Three is a good number, as it’s long enough to give you enough notes to test the flow, but not too long that you lose focus.

Of course, there will be times when it makes sense to do two or four notes, rather than three, but keep this in mind, and the music you play will sound better for it.


Enjoy your Friday. I’m off to do some more packing for mine and Archie’s big move to the new house tomorrow!

Dan Thorpe

Guitar Domination


P.S. This 3-note rule applies to everything and especially the songs in The Fingerstyle Collection course.

To take a listen to some of the gems in the course and how you can learn them in a fun step-by-step way, check it out at the link below…

The Fingerstyle Collection – learn 18 beautiful arrangements and discover the 3-step method

Apply this tip to the songs I teach and by the end of the month, you will have a cracking song or two in your repertoire.


P.P.S. This post was originally taken from Dan Thorpe’s private email list. To get blog posts like this sent to you which are full of great tips to make fingerpicking, strumming, and learning guitar more enjoyable (especially if you are over 40) join Dan’s list. It’s 100% free, HERE.

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