The guitar and all its shapes and sizes!

guitar blog

Written by Supernova

Apr 29, 2021

The history of the guitar

This is only a short introduction into the history of the guitar and all its shapes and sizes, but if I had my way, this blog would’ve become a novel! The guitar as we know it to be today, originated in Spain as early as the 16th century (1500 AD), but it dates back hundreds of years! The original instrument only had four strings. Three double strings and one single. It was only in the 19th century when the guitar’s body gained some drastic changes. The instrument became bigger and narrower with a thin soundboard.

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The different types of guitars

There are three different types of guitars: classical guitar, steel-string guitars, and the Hawaiian guitar. The modern acoustic and electric guitars, like humans, come in different shapes and sizes. The acoustic guitar has three different sections. Each section includes different ‘body types’ that differ in sound, shape and size. Unlike the acoustic guitar, the electric guitar needs amplification in order to be heard at performance volume. It also has three fun sections of shapes and sizes!

Acoustic guitars

Section 1: Steel string flattop guitars

Steel string guitars are the most common type of acoustic guitars, popular for strumming and acoustic fingerpicking.

Parlor

Parlor guitars have a small body, perfect for small venues such as home parlors. In South Africa, you might know it as a Township guitar!

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OM

The OM body style is good for strumming and fingerpicking.

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Dreadnought

The dreadnought is the most popular guitar body style! It is loud and has a wide and rich tone. Perfect for playing in an ensemble!

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Section 2: Nylon string guitars

Nylon string guitars are known for their warmer sound. They also have less string tension than steel string guitars.

Classical guitar

Classical guitars are exactly what they sound like and are used for classical music.  

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Flamenco guitar

Flamenco guitars are built to play flamenco music.

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Section 3: Archtop guitars

This body type is most commonly known as a fingerpicking jazz guitar, and because it does not sound the same as a flattop, is not a good choice for strumming.

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If you want to read more about the shapes of the acoustic guitar, check out this link!

Electric guitars

Section 1: Solid body guitars

These electric guitars are made from solid pieces of wood.

Stratocaster

The “strat” is a popular electric guitar used in different genres such as country, rock, blues, folk, soul, and R&B.

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Super strat

The super strat is perfect for metal and hard rock music!

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Telecaster

The telecaster body type is most commonly used in country music. 

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Offset

This style has three main instruments: the Jaguar, the Mustang, and the Jazzmaster. Check out this link to find out more about these differences.

Les Paul

The Les Paul is played in genres such as classical rock, but is capable of a lot more (except for country music!).

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SG and Flying V

These two guitars are perfect for a rock star! They look different and have two humbuckers.

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Section 2: Semi-hollow body guitars

Semi-hollow body guitars have an exposed opening. Inside, the guitar is divided into two by a block of wood.

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Section 3: Hollow body guitars

Hollow body guitars, on the other hand, do not have the wooden block on the inside.

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If you want to read more about the shapes of the electric guitar, check out his link.

If you have found the guitar and all its shapes and sizes interesting, make sure to read about the 16 parts of a guitar!

The different parts of the guitar

  • Body
  • Neck
  • Fretboard
  • Frets
  • Inlays
  • Headstock
  • Tuning pegs
  • The nut
  • Strap buttons
  • Bridge
  • Saddles
  • Tailpiece
  • Pickups
  • Pickup selector switch
  • Volume and tone controls
  • Jack socket
Guitar blog.

For more information regarding the parts of the guitar and what they do, check out the Dawsons link here.

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