Alright, it looks like you just made an important decision. You want to learn how to play one of the most popular instruments in the world. Congratulations. Of course, being a guitar teacher I always welcome the opportunity to help getting ambitious students started and on the right track. So let’s see what we can do for you on the topic of guitar basics for beginners.
First things first. Do you already have a guitar? Well, if you don’t then you obviously need to get yourself one that is conducive to the task. In other words, while in theory you can use any type of guitar to learn how to play, my recommendation would be that you start out with a classical guitar. These guitars are light and come with nylon strings and both of these factors are important when you just get started. Now, you might have your heart set on using your dad’s old Electric guitar or your friend’s Western guitar – in that case, it’s obviously your choice, but again, it would not be my preferred type of instrument. If you want to buy a guitar and if you are open to my suggestions, then get yourself a great acoustic guitar for beginners. A decent model doesn’t have to cost a fortune. I keep recommending the Yamaha C40, I personally own this model and you can read and watch my review on this guitar here.
So, the next step is to figure out what you actually mean by saying you want to learn to play guitar basics. I guess you and I need to find out what your expectations are. Do you want to learn a few basic guitar chords to play a bunch of songs? Or do you want to seriously learn how to play the instrument and eventually advance beyond a beginner level? I am not qualifying either one of the options. Both approaches are very valid. I know a lot of people who are perfectly happy by playing a couple dozens of songs using beginner or basic guitar chords. They have no interest in learning how to use a finger picking technique or playing guitar scales. But a lot of my students actually want to get a proper introduction to the instrument, they want to learn about rhythm, beats, muting, picking , etc. So it really depends on what you want at the end of the day. With that being said, maybe you just don’t know yet where you want to go with this, which is fine, too. You can start out with high ambitions but later realize that’s not what you want, or vice versa.
How To Play Guitar Basics
So based on your objectives, I would suggest you look into two different options.
1. Use free resources to teach yourself how to play the guitar. There are tons of documents and videos out there, such as this “guitar basic chords” introduction, or the guitar basics pdf – document here, which is a fantastic resource by Darrin Koltow at michalpowersmusic.com. All this is available free of charge to you, you can thank the inventors of the internet for this blessing.
2. Now, alternatively, you can invest money and get yourself a little bit of help. If you feel you learn new things better by having something or somebody guiding you through the process, then you have plenty of choices. Hiring a guitar teacher is one option, however, taking one-on-one lessons can get very expensive. Group sessions are less costly but also less effective. Lastly, you can learn the guitar basics and more by taking an online course. The advantages are obvious: you schedule your own practicing time, you don’t have people like me (meaning guitar teachers) coming to your house or having going over to theirs and they don’t have to cost a lot. Well, some do, but I don’t think they are worth your money. You can get an excellent online guitar program these days for under $80. That is less than you would pay for a couple of lessons, yet you get a full program. For instance, my Beginners Guitar Course comes with 29 full video lessons, tons of worksheets, checkpoints, FULL customer support (I answer ALL questions promptly and even provide personal video responses free of charge), and you can get all that for a one time payment of $69.
Alright, so again, think about your own expectations when it comes to learning how to play guitar basics. In my opinion the least expensive yet most effective way is an online guitar course for beginners. If you don’t want to spend any money though, then start out with the resources that I mentioned under Option 1. You can always come back here and sign-up for the Beginners Guitar Course at a later point. By the way, send me an email if you have any questions around the program and I might even have a coupon for you which will make it even more affordable..;-)