Guitar Online

Is it Possible to Learn Guitar Online?

Guitar OnlineWith the advent of YouTube tutorials for just about everything, it’s only fitting that there are a lot of videos out there claiming to be able to teach you how to play guitar. While you might think this is a quick and easy way to become a pro, you’ll want to make sure you have all of the information before diving in headfirst.

Online Tutorials

When you’re surfing the Internet, you’ll come across many different websites with prerecorded tutorials to help you learn guitar online. But the keyword there is “help,” as they’re never going to be personalized enough to be the only resource you’ll need to learn guitar properly. It’s all too easy to learn guitar online incorrectly, such as poor strumming patterns or improper chord fingerings, without a private instructor to guide you.

In between scheduled lessons, however, using online tutorials can be a great supplemental resource to keep you motivated. When you’re working with a private instructor, either in-person or online, he or she may have some suggestions for tutorial videos for the new techniques you’re learning. Don’t be afraid to ask your teacher for a few videos that can help you master the new lesson material after the instruction time is over. A good teacher will recognize that one of the best ways to learn is repetition, and since it’s impractical to have instruction time every day to go over the same techniques, the next best thing is to watch (and mimic) tutorials that properly describe the new techniques.

Live, Online Lessons

In addition to prerecorded tutorial videos, there’s also another method to if you want to learn guitar online: live, online lessons. These are great if your schedule doesn’t allow for consistent in-person lessons. If you have a busy travel schedule, for example, scheduling online lessons is a great way to learn guitar online. There are many instructors out there who are able to provide online lessons through Skype or other video chat services, and most have flexibility in scheduling to make sure that your life and your lessons don’t get in each others’ way.

If you’re going to go the online guitar lesson route, you’ll need a few extra things aside from your guitar: a broadband Internet connection, and a webcam to use with your video chat service. Most instructors use Skype for this, but some might prefer other services such as FaceTime and Google Hangouts. All of these chat services are free to sign up for.

Of course, one big disadvantage of online lessons is the lack of actual face-to-face contact. If you’re developing a new technique and start showing signs of a bad habit, a private instructor may need to physically manipulate your hand position, which can’t be done through a computer screen. Even so, most private teachers are able to do a good enough job explaining where you’re falling short and can help you break the bad habit through video chat.

Best of Both Worlds: Combine Each Resource

If you want to get the most out of your guitar lessons, you can combine in-person lessons, live online lessons, and online tutorials. Even if you can only meet in-person once a month, and then have the other weeks where you’ll be conducting the lesson over video chat, you’ll still have the chance to have face-to-face contact and can continue learning through video chat.

When you’re looking to learn guitar online, there’s a lot of information available. Most of the tutorial videos have the best intentions at heart, but it can be easy to pick up bad techniques if you’re not careful. Working with a private instructor to keep you on the right path is key!

 

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Photo by Jazmin Million

lisa x

8-Year-Old Girl is Gnarliest Guitar Shredder Ever

I’m willing to bet that “playing like a girl” will stop being an insult within this little lady’s lifetime! At just 8 years old, Lisa-X is able to play rapid fire metal solos that will melt your face off and blow your mind.

She’s smaller than her guitar, but she sure knows how to make it sound big and mighty. Plus, the sweet grin she gives the camera as she’s bending a note around 1:46? Priceless!

Child prodigies like Lisa are absolutely amazing, but there’s really no wrong age to start playing guitar. Enrolling in guitar lessons is the perfect first step to get your musical journey going. The right guitar teacher can help you learn to play the music you love, and give you personal attention to make sure you’re progressing as you should. Search for a teacher on TakeLessons and get started with guitar lessons today!

 

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Guitar Posture

Introduction to Proper Guitar Posture

Guitar PostureAs a beginner, proper guitar posture is one of the most important beginning steps before you learn about chords, picking, and strumming. Sadly, learning proper guitar posture is often an afterthought to learning to play. Although whether you choose to sit or stand has little effect on your tone or technique, proper guitar posture is important for many other reasons.

Why Is Proper Posture Important?

Proper guitar posture makes the work of your hands and fingers easier, conserving your energy. It also dramatically improves your skills as a guitarist, and prevents injuries from overuse.

Pitfalls of Poor Posture:

  • Poor instrument tone

  • Difficulties playing fast or advanced passages

  • Players may tire more quickly

  • Sprains and injuries, such as tendonitis, particularly in the wrist

Proper Guitar Posture: Modern Seated Position

  1. Sit with your back straight and your feet slightly apart.

  2. While sitting, rest the waist of your guitar – the indented part between the guitar’s upper and lower bouts or curved parts – on your right leg.

  3. Rest the guitar lightly on your right forearm, on the base bout, balancing the guitar. Note: You should be able to able to take your left hand completely off the fretboard without the guitar dropping toward the floor.

  4. Elevate your guitar using a support arm between your left thigh and the guitar’s lower side so that your left foot can remain on the floor.

Proper Guitar Posture: Classical Seated Position

For those on the path to pursuing a classical guitar career, it’s traditional to play in the seated position only, with the guitar resting on your left leg. This is because this position puts the guitar closest to the center of your body, in the optimum position for executing the difficult fingerings of classical guitar music. The steps for proper guitar posture for the classical guitarist are as follows:

  1. Sit with your back straight and your feet slightly apart.

  2. While sitting, rest the waist of your guitar – the indented part between the guitar’s upper and lower bouts or curved parts – on your left leg.

  3. Rest the guitar lightly on your left forearm, on the base bout, balancing the guitar. Note: You should be able to able to take your right hand completely off the fretboard without the guitar dropping toward the floor.

  4. Elevate your classical guitar by raising the left leg using a specially made guitar foot stool.

Don’t Neglect These Important Tips for Maintaining Proper Guitar Posture While in Seated Position:

  • Your legs may be crossed or uncrossed, but your knees should be high enough to support the guitar at or just below chest height.

  • Rest the dip of the guitar on your lap and the body of the guitar flat against your chest.

  • Don’t hunch your back.

  • Point your elbow toward the top corner of the guitar, resting it so that your forearm and wrist can pivot over the strings while supporting the guitar against your body.

  • Be aware of the angle of your fret hand. Don’t bend the arm of your fret hand beyond a 90-degree right angle. “Don’t be obtuse” – acute angles put less strain on your wrist.

Proper Guitar Posture: Standing

  1. Add a guitar strap for support in standing position. Choose a new, quality strap over an old, worn strap to prevent dropping and damaging your guitar if the strap slips off a pin.

  2. Adjust the length of the guitar strap and the height of the guitar until you can reach the fretboard and strings comfortably. You don’t want the guitar hanging too low as this will result in the need to bend your wrists at an awkward angle to play, making fast passages more difficult.

  3. Your body should make the adjustment from sitting to standing naturally. However, keep the following tips in mind to ensure proper guitar posture when standing:

    • Keep your back straight, but relaxed.

    • Hold the elbow of your strumming arm forward and square with your body (toward the top corner of your guitar – not back behind you) to provide an optimum pivot point for strumming.

    • Be aware of the angle of your fret hand. Don’t bend the arm of your fret hand beyond a 90 degree right angle. “Don’t be obtuse” – acute angles put less strain on your wrist.

    • Bend your left leg slightly for support, so you don’t have to hunch over if you need a better view of the fretboard.

Selecting the right tools also helps ensure proper guitar posture:

  • Find your perfect chair. The ideal chair should have no arms. The height of the chair should be such that your feet rest flat on the floor and your lap is flat, not angled. If you are standing next to the chair, the seat of the chair should fall right in the middle of your knees.

  • Pay attention to your stand – your music stand, that is. Don’t place it too low or too high. Prevent the head tilting that leads to headaches, back, and neck strain by adjusting your music stand so that your don’t have to tilt your head to read music.

  • Find a great teacher. Opt for private, one-on-one lessons with a great teacher who is well-versed in the ins and outs of playing and proper guitar posture to avoid misinformation and to ensure you reach your fullest potential.

While imitating your favorite player may be fun, don’t make it a habit if that player’s posture is poor­. Remember, proper guitar posture results in better guitar playing and a pain-free body – so save your Alice Cooper impressions for when you’re goofing off with your friends.

Photo by afunkydamsel

 

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50 Perfect Quotes About Music

50 Perfect Quotes About Music

50 Perfect Quotes About MusicSometimes, the most satisfying thing about hearing quotes from famous figures is realizing that a great mind shared the same thoughts and feelings as you. Geniuses, they’re just like us!

When it comes to music, many of history’s greats had a lot to say, so you’re bound to find that somebody incredible loved music just the way that you do. Share these quotes with your friends, paint them on your studio wall, slip them into a loved one’s instrument case, or write them in your journal. Just like your favorite songs, these great quotes about music are yours to live with! Read more

Mastering Guitar Finger Placement

Mastering Guitar Finger Placement

Mastering Guitar Finger PlacementWhen you’re learning how to play the guitar, it’s crucial to form good habits. If you can make correct guitar finger placement a regular part of your practice routine, you’ll soon find it comes second nature to you. Learning the right fingering technique and sticking with it early on is much easier than trying to correct bad habits later on! Read more

how to buy a guitar

How to Buy a Guitar: All Your Questions Answered

how to buy a guitarGetting your first guitar is a super exciting milestone in your musical life! If you’ve never made such a big purchase before, you might have a lot of questions about how to buy a guitar. In this guide, we’ll go over the basics so you know where to go, what to look for, and the extras you’ll need to start jamming out. Read more

Valentines Day 5 Easy Guitar Songs to Impress Your Sweetie

Valentine’s Day Special: 5 Easy Guitar Songs to Impress Your Sweetie

Is there anything more romantic than sharing a special song with the one you love? We want to help you pull out all the stops this Valentine’s Day, so San Diego guitar teacher Allen D. stopped by our office really quick for an easy Valentine’s Day guitar lesson.  All you need are a few basic guitar chords and a little bit of courage, and you’re sure to impress the heck out of your favorite lady or gentleman!

In the video below, you’ll learn how to play:

  • 5 basic guitar chords: G, D, C, E minor, and A minor
  • “Cupid” by Sam Cooke
  • “I’m Yours” by Jason Mraz
  • “Brown Eyed Girl” by Van Morrison
  • “Stand by Me” by Ben E. King
  • “Wonderful Tonight” by Eric Clapton Read more

How to Read Guitar Chords

how to read guitar chordsIf you’re beginning to learn how to play guitar, chances are you’ll want to get started by learning a handful of chords. Learning how to read guitar chords is a great way to get familiar with guitar notation and get used to your instrument.

A chord is a group of notes that makes a harmony when played all together. On guitar, you can strum chords to accompany a melody that you or someone else are singing, or more advanced players might incorporate chords with single notes for a more complex sound. Basically, chords are the building blocks you need to have in place in order to learn to play songs on the guitar. Read more

Guitar Master’s Guide: How to Hold a Guitar Pick

how to hold a guitar pickFor a beginning guitarist, the proper pick-hold is one of the most important things to master right off the bat. Grip too hard or in the wrong position, and you could wind up tense, in pain, and with a bad sound. Hold your pick too loosely however, and it could fly out of your hand!

Luckily for you, learning how to hold a guitar pick the right way is easy. Plus, once you master your guitar picking posture, it will be easier to learn more techniques down the road. To get started, you’ll want to make sure you have the right guitar pick on hand. Read more