Tips Every Beginner Guitar Player Should Know

Although some people are gifted with guitar playing talent, every professional guitar player starts somewhere. To learn how to read sheet music and master your instrument, there are a few tips you should keep in mind. Here are a few things every beginner guitar player should learn, from getting to know your instrument to playing with other musicians as much as you can.

Get to Know Your Instrument

One of the first things you should do when learning the guitar is getting to know your instrument. Survey your guitar, feel the strings in your hand and brush your hand over the base of the instrument. It’s crucial to become comfortable holding your instrument and begin learning each part of the guitar. By getting to know your instrument, you have a better understanding of it as a whole while learning how to play the guitar.

Find a Reputable Teacher or Begin Learning on Your Own

To start actually learning how to play your guitar, you should hire a reputable teacher for private lessons. You can also begin teaching yourself through self-teaching guitar books or online courses. Fortunately, you have plenty of learning outlets at your disposal, all you have to do is choose which method you’re the best learning from, whether this is one-on-one guitar lessons or online classes. However, there’s so much more to beginning to learn how to play the guitar than just finding a local teacher!

Start Mastering Cords

Now that you’ve gotten to know your guitar, it’s time you start mastering the chords. Although you may think this redundant, since you don’t know how to read sheet music yet, most songs use the same basic chords. So, once you’ve mastered a handful of chords, you can start learning your favorite tunes! Especially if you’re end goal is to write your own music, mastering chords and using your voice to go along will keep you motivated and focused on helping you reach your goal. Plus, there are plenty of online sites and books that you can use to teach yourself chords before getting started on lessons. Now that will be something to impress your guitar teacher with!

Take Advantage of a Metronome

Metronomes are a great tool that can help you learn how to play the guitar fast, slow, on the beat, when to increase or decrease the tempo, etc. These skills are invaluable when mastering the guitar, even if it may not seem important to know. Fortunately, if you’re not interested in purchasing yourself a metronome, there are online tools you can use, even smartphone apps that you can download, which can act as a digital metronome! Even if it may not seem like a valuable tool to use, start experimenting with a metronome, and you’ll soon learn how integral it can be to your skill set.

Listen to Different Genres of Guitar Music

Usually, people listen to different types of music, but this is exceptionally crucial when learning how to play the guitar. By listening to different genres of guitar music, even if you only want to play a specific type, you can start experimenting with your own distinct style of playing the guitar. Plus, as you learn more about playing the guitar, your interests and preferred genre will gradually shift over time. Fortunately, now that you’re listening to a vast array of guitar music, no matter what genre you want to play guitar in, you’ll already know how the rhythms work. Although it may seem like a lot of work to continuously listen to a variety of guitar music, it’s an investment that’s worth the time and effort to do.

Always Ask for Advice When You Need It

If you’re having a hard time learning how to play the guitar, it doesn’t mean you have to get frustrated and give up. Whenever you’re having a hiccup, ask for help on how to overcome your problem. It’s never a poor choice to ask for advice when you need it the most. Even professional guitar players need assistance once and a while!

Join a Local Band

To improve your guitar-playing skills, one of the best outlets you can take advantage of is a local band. Fortunately, if you’re a student, most schools have their own band, but you can also join a community band if your town or city has one. By joining a band, you can hone your skills in playing the guitar and meet other beginners like yourself. Plus, it’s significant experience to put on your resume, if you’re looking to play professionally.

Play With Other Musicians Whenever You Can

It may be more tempting to play on your own while learning how to play the guitar, but playing with other musicians has its benefits. By making friends with other guitar players, whether they be beginners or advanced players, you can learn tips and tricks that they use. Plus, if you’re looking to start a band down the line, this is the perfect way to start jam sessions and get more comfortable with other people. Even if it may not seem fun to play with other people, especially if you don’t know how to read music yet, plenty of musicians will be more than happy to freestyle with you and give you some tips on how you can improve your playing. All you need to do is escape your anxiety bubble and encourage yourself to start playing with other musicians as much as you can.

If you’re a relatively new guitar player, there are plenty of tips you should keep in mind to improve your playing, from getting to know your guitar to asking for advice and playing with other musicians whenever you can. Although learning a new instrument can be a complicated process, by taking your time and getting more comfortable with your guitar, you can quickly become a pro! Just remember, mastering an instrument will take more than a week, don’t get discouraged if you start having a hard time.

Guest post by Vincent Reina, co-founder of Music To Your Home.

Vincent Reina began teaching piano lessons as a high school student, and has continued to do so ever since. He received a Bachelor of Music Degree in Piano Performance from Purchase Conservatory. He then earned a Masters of Arts in Teaching Music from Manhattanville College. Today, Vincent is co-founder of Music To Your Home, a New York City based music school. He’s the proud winner of many significant piano competitions, including the Westminster Choir College Artistic Excellence in Piano Award.

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