Can We Learn The Guitar Online?

Posted by Mike Schumacher

How difficult is it to actually start learning the guitar online as opposed to using a qualified teacher?

I will start by saying this. A qualified guitar tutor can be invaluable for your development. There are things that just ‘stick’ in your brain better when you learn them in person, and a good teacher can guide you in learning to play the guitar properly.

The teacher can also speed up the pace at which you learn, correct any mistakes you are making in real-time and identify your weaknesses as a player.

However, this isn’t the right option for everybody, for a few reasons.

Should we get a guitar instructor?

A great trainer usually does not come for free (barring if your parents or relatives know someone, which is a great way to have someone evaluate your playing for a low cost)

Normally, however, one lesson a week, for just half an hour, is going to cost upwards of $30 per lesson.

That indicates one short lesson a week is going to run you $120 or more each month, which isn’t in the cards for everybody.

It can be a lot much easier to jam when it best fits your schedule. This is often later during the night or on weekends, which may not fit the schedule of your teacher.

Because of this, there are plenty of people out there who want to teach themselves to play guitar on their own and at their own speed.

Can one learn to play the guitar online?

The power of the web has created an amazing database of resources for those who actually want to find out. However, discovering to truly shred a guitar is a procedure.

It takes a great deal of effort, determination, and appropriate technique. I hope you have the decision to make it happen, but we are here to help you with the correct theory & strategy.

Knowing basic chords and playing along with popular tunes is fantastic, and a great deal of fun. And we have many articles (see links) that detail just how to do that.

However, if you truly aspire to be an expert guitar player, you need to start learning the guitar via other means.

Okay, I already know some chords—what should I do next?

The first thing to do would be to spend the time learning major scales, how to play the scales in a variety of different ways.

Continue in this way, learning small scales, note patterns, riffs, more complex chords, guitar theory, and the best part is once you have actually mastered these ideas and the fundamentals, you will learn new songs VERY quickly.

In a couple of months, you will have the ability to select up new tunes to add to your repertoire with ease.

Make a schedule

If I were to study guitar on my own, would put the same discipline on myself as if I were going to a teacher

A teacher would give you homework to practice for the next week.

Usually they will give you a couple things to practice, so it is helpful to divide it up. For example, let’s make a mock schedule:

Week 1

  1. Learn all the basic chords and bar chords for all keys, major and minor.
  2. Practice the major scale in one position, ascending and descending at a moderate tempo.
  3. Pick a song to start learning that has a ‘guitar riff’, (Sunshine of Your Love, Purple Haze). Learn the guitar chords and the riff from start to finish.

Don’t set too many goals! Make sure that you can accomplish each goal that you set yourself. Then for the next week, you want to check yourself to make sure you completed your goals.

Let’s make a follow-up schedule to Week 1.

Week 2

  1. Check to make sure you know all basic chords and bar chords for major and minor. Then add the dominant bar chords and learn them for all keys.
  2. Practice the major scale in another position (starting from the A string perhaps or look at the number of ways you can play the major scale). Work on them ascending and descending at a moderate tempo.
  3. Keep going on the song you were studying. If there is a part that is too difficult (guitar solo, etc.), you can skip it—or—learn at least the first couple bars (or notes) of the solo or difficult part. This will train your ear even if you don’t have the finger strength to do it yet. There are also many programs you can download to slow a song down and learn it note by note. Ultimately you don’t want to be afraid to start learning complicated solos, even if it will take you a while to play it (and actually you can probably learn it faster than you think!)

Invest in a teacher for a couple of lessons

If this type of study method is foreign to you or seems difficult to structure your time, I would invest in a good teacher for at least a month of lessons to see how they can help you organize a practice schedule.

Obviously learning guitar online is more practical and time-saving but if you are confused about where to start, a teacher can really straighten you out.

When you take your first couple of lessons, don’t just walk in there unprepared.

Show them that you’ve been preparing a schedule and ask them their opinions. They’ll want to hear you play so prepare something to play for them.

They can immediately start giving advice and asking you what you know. They also can give you recommendations for songs to learn that will increase your technique and chord vocabulary.

Always be on the lookout for new music, being a musician is also about being open-minded to different styles and ways of playing the instrument.

Most people want to learn rock and pop but don’t understand that Jazz or Brazilian Bossa Nova also have a great tradition on the guitar, and even just taking an interest in these styles can open you to new music that many have explored.

Check out our other articles to get a head start on learning chords and theory:

Learn the Basic Guitar Chords with A SONG!

How to Learn the Guitar Fretboard in 10 minutes

Which Guitar Scales Should I Learn First?

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