Many of you have asked for advice for beginners learning how to play the guitar. Here are some answers to your common questions:
Which guitar should I buy?
Choosing a guitar should be fun!
When choosing your first guitar, it can be tempting to buy the cheapest instrument you can find. While it’s important to work within a budget, I’d encourage you to invest in a quality instrument that will stay in tune.
Go to a guitar store and play several guitars to find one that you love and that feels and sounds really good to you.
If you love the vibe of your instrument, it will be way more fun to practice with!
If you’re wanting to use your guitar to play live shows, look for one with a built-in pick up/preamp.
When my sister Lindsay was first learning to play, we got her a Little Martin guitar, which is a great small size, making it easier to play and to pack around when traveling.
I love playing my Koa top Taylor GS Mini for live shows because of it’s portable, smaller size and bright sound.
My favorite guitar to write with and play on studio recordings is my Martin X Series Custom X1-000E. Martin makes my favorite guitars- beautiful instruments with great resonance and tone!
What accessories do I need?
1. A guitar tuner.I use this Snark clip on tuner.
2. A quality capo. Or two. Or three. Because let’s be real- you’re probably going to lose one at some point. I use this one, but I’ve heard this one is also great. You might have to test out a couple to find one that works best for you!
3. Guitar picks. This pack has a variety of picks with varying thickness. These are my personal favorite picks.
4. Pick holder. I have this one that sticks to the top of your guitar so you can grab picks easily while playing!
5. Extra guitar strings. Breaking strings happens more often than you’d think! I always keep a couple packs of Martin 80/20 Bronze light strings in my guitar case.
6. Guitar string winder and cutter. My uncle gave me one of these when I first started playing and let me tell you – it is a life saver! Trying to pry the pegs out to remove and replace your guitar strings with tweezers is no fun at all! Trust me. I know from experience.
7. Guitar case. Most guitars come with a soft top case when you purchase them, which is great for every day use. If you plan on taking your instrument on the road or on an airplane, I recommend investing in a quality hard case that will protect your instrument from changes in elevation and weather.
8. A guitar strap. If you’re planning on standing up when you play live, you’ll need a strap to hold your instrument in place. A fun guitar strap lets you add some of your own personal style to your instrument! Most music stores sell them, and Amazon has a pretty good selection as well.
What’s the best way to learn to play guitar?
Everyone learns differently!
I taught myself how to play by watching YouTube videos and playing by ear, but now that I’m learning to read music and teaching lessons, I’m expanding my knowledge and continuing to improve by opening myself up to new ways of learning.
You might benefit from the discipline of private guitar lessons.
Or, you might be self motivated enough to teach yourself and practice on your own!
Either way, learning to play guitar should be fun! Enjoy the process, even if it doesn’t sound perfect at first.