Of all the string instruments, there is none quite so classic as the guitar. It has been the staple instrument of rock and blues music for near-on a century, with musicians like Eric Clapton, Eddie Van Halen, Joan Jett, and more whose prowess with the guitar was iconic. The guitar has been part of the music we all know and love and has been part of human history since even before the ancient Greeks. Despite how long it has been a part of music, learning the guitar as an adult can seem particularly challenging. You may think you are too old to learn, or that you will not be able to memorize the chords, or that you do not have the time. Worry not! If you are truly interested in chasing a passion for this instrument, we have got plenty of tips to help you get started with your musical journey. Read on to see how you can make the guitar your favorite new instrument to learn!
Purchase Within A Budget That Works for You
When you want to learn an instrument, you have got to start with making sure you have got a good quality instrument. Your budget will likely be the main deciding factor and not any particular brand name, but you’ll likely be looking for guitars anywhere in the $100 to $400 range for a beginner’s guitar and accessories like a case and steel strings, though you can find guitars that are worthwhile for less than this. There is nothing wrong with purchasing something on the lower end when you are starting out, then purchasing something on the higher end of the scale once you are more confident in your playing. Bear in mind that certain kinds of guitars like electric guitars may have a higher price point than acoustic guitars, which may be a determining factor in choosing the kind of guitar to start with.
It is also worth looking into a left-handed guitar option if that is better suited to your needs. There is no need to stress yourself out playing the guitar if you are playing it backwards from what could be more comfortable!
Regular Practice and Patience
When it comes right now to it, there is no true substitute for setting yourself some time regularly to sit down and practice playing. The difference between learning guitar for children and adults is as adults, we have developed better (hopefully) time management skills and the ability to stick with a task patiently. It can be difficult but making regular practice sessions will help the learning process immensely.
With patience, you can be more confident in your progress. Instead of setting yourself a goal that feels insurmountable, say an hour a day, give yourself a minimum of five to ten minutes a day. By setting this minimum instead of trying to reach an endpoint, you can shift your mindset towards practice that feels more productive instead of frustrating. No one is expected to be an expert with the guitar after only an hour or two, and you should not be discouraged if it is difficult at the start.
Finding the Right Way to Learn
The best way to start learning, for many people, is to have a tutor who can show you the basics and work with you as you get past the initial hurdles. A tutor can be a fantastic asset because they can work with you on areas that are the weakest for you, and better encourage you while learning since they've gone through the same novice phase as you. The first time you pick up a guitar with the intention of learning it, it is going to feel unusual. We're not naturally attuned to maneuvering our hands in the way of making music for instruments like guitars, and you may feel some frustration at the outset, which is why it can be great to have a tutor to help teach you and guide you.
Tutor or Tutorial?
Hiring a tutor however does mean an additional financial cost that may be prohibitive, and there is no guarantee that the tutor you get lessons from will be the right fit for your personal learning style. Furthermore, you may not always have a consistent time available to learn the guitar, whether it is family or work commitments. Luckily, you have the power of the internet at your fingertips: there is no shortage of online tutorials and videos dedicated to first-time learners, and many are free to watch whenever and wherever you choose. While these tutorials may lack a personalized training method, they make up for in greater convenience for you to pick up and put down the guitar at your leisure.
Ensure You Have Plenty of Room to Practice
It may seem trivial, but in fact, it is quite important to ensure that you have plenty of extra space to practice. In a cramped apartment with your belongings around you, it can be difficult to make room for a case, sheets of music, an amplifier (If you’re looking to pick up the electric guitar), and anything else you need. When you clear a space to practice, you are also putting yourself in the mindset of focus and clarity you will need to practice, without feeling distracted. Plus, you do not want to get so into the groove of a favorite song that your rocking out has you knocking stuff over! Have a dedicated practicing space gives you a chance to retreat from your day-to-day stresses and focus purely on having fun and playing the guitar. Whether that is the retreat to the garage, or playing sitting up in bed, if you have some uninterrupted time to play and the space to enjoy yourself, it does not matter where.
Remember to Have Fun with It!
No matter what, playing the guitar should be a fun and exciting time! Instead of looking at it as a chore, see time spent playing and practicing as a chance to learn your favorite genre of music or play the classics of an artist you like. There is no shortage of sheet music for guitar, and a good tutor will adapt their style of teaching to help you learn the kinds of music that you want to. Whether you are a fan of blues, pop, rock, folk, country, or indeed most any kind of music, it is guaranteed that you will be able to find guitar music for it. Playing music that you enjoy will make the learning process that much smoother and provide more motivation to stick with it even during the rough patches. The best thing about making progress with something tricky is that you will see (and more importantly, hear) the improvements right away!
Find A Community!
What is particularly wonderful about playing the guitar is that it can be an excellent way to become part of a community. As an adult, it can be difficult to find and make new friends, especially if you are new to an area. If you’re looking to play solo, the guitar is an excellent instrument for sitting back with and unwinding, but If you’re more into playing in groups, there’s likely plenty of musicians and other guitar enthusiasts in your area to join and share your enthusiasm with. Music brings people together no matter our differences. When you are looking to pick up a new guitar and start your musical journey, head on over to ashthorpe.com for premium instruments at an affordable price.