If you have made the decision to commit yourself to learning a musical instrument this year, but are unsure of where to start or what instrument to choose, guitar may be the perfect instrument for you! “Why should I learn guitar?” you may ask. If you’re wondering why guitar is the ideal first instrument to learn – then you’re in luck – there are many reasons. In this article, we will explore the top five reasons for learning guitar as your first instrument.
Let’s Look at Some Reasons to Learn Guitar First
1. Guitar is Easy to Learn – Seriously
While the instrument itself is incredibly complex and takes years to fully understand, the guitar has an incredibly easy learning curve for beginners. If you choose to pick up the guitar and find a great teacher, it won’t be long before you are able to play some basic songs using chords. This is a great confidence booster for beginning musicians! It’s a wonderful experience to be able to see progress over a short period of time!
2. It’s Polyphonic – So You Can Play Any Song You Want
A polyphonic instrument is one that can play multiple notes simultaneously. The guitar falls into this category since it is able to play six different tones at once. While this may seem complicated, it is one of the main reasons why guitar is so popular! Almost all music can be translated to the guitar, which allows students who enjoy all musical styles.
3. Versatility – Easily Play Different Styles
The endless abilities of the guitar, coupled with its 6 note polyphony, creates an extremely versatile instrument. You can explore a variety of sounds and music and develop your ear to be able to play anything that you want!
The guitar also comes in various forms. The classical guitar, acoustic guitar, and electric guitar all have a variety of tones and unique sounds. Exploring each of these instruments is great for beginners who want to discover their own unique style of play.
4. Guitars are Affordable and Accessible
Think about it, how many people do you know that own a guitar? How many places are there to get a guitar near your home? Chances are, you can name at least one or two music shops and know at least a few people who play the guitar. These two ideas alone should be enough to convince you to pick up a guitar yourself. It is also great to have a few friends that also play guitar, you can learn from each other and help each other grow as musicians!
Secondly, guitars are affordable. I know that sounds crazy. But when compared to the cost of a piano or even a school band instrument, the guitar is incredibly affordable. I always recommend that new players budget to spend at least $300 on a guitar. That is incredibly cheap when compared to $800-$1200 for a saxophone.
5. Playing Guitar is Good For Your Brain
There are tons of benefits to playing the guitar, but the most popular are increased brain function and fine motor skills. Playing any musical instrument can increase brain function, in fact, researchers from Johns Hopkins have studied this phenomenon up close; having jazz performers and rappers improvise while laying down inside of an fMRI machine. These researchers were able to see first-hand that creating music gets the brain working in ways if wouldn’t otherwise have to.
But while all musical instruments are good for your brain, the guitar is a little different. As a guitarist, you are almost always required to memorize your music and be able to perform it regularly. This takes an extreme amount of concentration and focus, especially when practicing more difficult pieces of music!
The other great benefit is the development of fine motor skills. When playing guitar, you develop the ability to use each hand for specific functions! One hand will be dedicated to plucking the strings, while the other hand will be dedicated to pressing down notes at various speeds along the fretboard. This forces us to develop finger independence in our hands, which develops our fine motor skills!
You’ll Have to Try Guitar Firsthand to Truly Understand Why it’s the Perfect First Instrument
There are thousands of reasons for you to pick up the guitar as a first instrument. It’s popularity in music, wide range of sounds, and basic learning curve make it incredibly appealing to beginners. Whether you’re an adult looking to take on a weekly self-care exercise, or a parent looking for a good starting point for your child’s music education – then you’ve found the answer.
With guitar as your first instrument, you will begin your musical journey learning some of your favorite songs, while developing a skill set that can easily translate to other musical interests.