Mandolin Lessons for Beginners

Introduction to online Mandolin lessons

These online beginner mandolin lessons are designed to get you started with the basics. On this page, you'll find ten subjects each containing mini lessons, so you have a step by step process on how to learn the mandolin. Every lesson includes a video and mandolin tab that you can play along with so your timing can improve from the very start. Go ahead, jump in and have fun!

  • 1.1


    Welcome to the Tunefox Beginner Lessons for Mandolin! Here you’ll find all you need to get started on your instrument, from tuning and learning how to read tab to playing your first song. Our hope...

Lesson #1

Tuning your Mandolin and How to Read Tab

  • 1.1

    How to Tune Your Mandolin

    Welcome to the first Tunefox mandolin lesson where you'll learn how to tune your mandolin using an electronic tuner!

  • 1.2

    How to Read Mandolin Tab

    Tab is one of the most popular learning tools available. Tunefox features tabs for all of it's songs, licks, and lessons so to prepare you for the rest of the site, let's talk about how to read tab.

Lesson #2

Right Hand Position and Holding a Flatpick

  • 2.1

    Right Arm and Hand Position

    This lesson will teach you how to position your mandolin so your right arm and hand will be in the correct position for strumming and flat picking.

  • 2.2

    How to Hold a Flatpick

    In this lesson, you'll learn about different types of flatpicks and how to hold one.

Lesson #3

Strumming 101: Downstrokes and Upstrokes

  • 3.1


    Downstrokes are the foundation for strumming and picking melodies and in this lesson you'll learn how to get started with strumming the mandolin.

  • 3.2


    Upstrokes are essentially the opposite of downstrokes. Your hand is starting below the strings and playing up through them.

  • 3.3

    Combining Down and Up Strums

    Now that you've practiced down and upstrokes, let's put them together to create a basic strumming pattern.

Lesson #4

Adding the Left Hand and Your First Chord

Lesson #5

Two More Chords - C and D

  • 5.1

    The C Major Chord

    The C major chord shape is similar to the G chord in that you're using the same fingers on the same frets. The only difference is what strings they are on.

  • 5.2

    The D Major Chord

    The D major chord is a different shape than your G and C chords, but it still only uses two fingers.

Lesson #6

Switching Chords

Lesson #7

Flatpicking 101: Right Hand Technique

Lesson #8

The G Scale

  • 8.1

    Low Octave with Downstrokes

    The G major scale is the scale associated with the G major chord and is a great starting place for developing your left hand technique.

  • 8.2

    High Octave using Alternate Picking

    This is the second part to the G major scale and is essentially just and extension of the lower octave scale that you learned in lesson 8.1.

  • 8.3

    The Three Octave G Major Scale

    Now that you know the low octave and the higher octave scale, let's combine them to create a three octave G major scale.

Lesson #9

Slurs: Hammer-ons, Slides, and Pull-offs

  • 9.1

    The Hammer-On

    The Hammer-on is the first of three left hand articulations you'll see in Tunefox songs and licks. These articulations are called 'slurs.'

  • 9.2

    The Pull-Off

    The pull-off is another left hand articulation, or slur.

  • 9.3

    The Slide

    The slide is another type of left hand articulation.

Lesson #10

The C Major Scale

  • 10.1

    One Octave with Downstrokes

    In this lesson you are going to learn the C major scale. This scale is associated with the C chord that we covered in a previous lesson.

  • 10.2

    C Major Scale from Lowest Note

    Did you know you can play a C major scale from a note other than C? Keep reading to learn how.

Online Mandolin lessons

Online Mandolin lessonsBegin your bluegrass mandolin journey right here with Tunefox. These online mandolin lessons will give you a comprehensive understanding of mandolin roll patterns, chords, and slurs so you can start learning bluegrass mandolin solos in the Tunefox song library as soon as possible. Start from the very beginning of holding your pick and learning to read tab and journey through learning how to match strumming patterns with chords to playing G and C major scales. Watch the video lesson included in each section and then play along with the interactive mandolin tab to get the material under your fingers and in your ears. If things are too fast for you at the beginning, slow down the playback using the tempo slider and build your speed gradually.

By using a combination of the online mandolin video lessons, mandolin tab, and even the Official Tunefox User’s Group on Facebook for feedback and encouragement, you’ll be in good shape to start jamming with your friends and playing more complicated bluegrass music on the mandolin. Tunefox is here for you from the start so let us know if you have any questions along the way. Email us at support@tunefox.com.