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Learn to Play the Guitar

By Charles Hopkins Published 05/18/2006 | Music
Here are some of the more common ways to learn to play the guitar. Try each method to see what works best for you.

Group Lessons: Learning guitar in a group setting can be less intimidating for the beginning musician. You not only get the benefit of having a teacher to help you along you can often judge your progress by where the other students are in the class. The worst part about taking guitar lessons in a group setting is the teachers time is divided so you may not get as much attention as you might need.

Private Lessons: This is the best way to learn to play the guitar if you can find the right teacher. The instructor can gauge your progress each week and custom design your lessons for you. You have your teachers undivided attention and you can ask anything you feel is not clear.

CD Lessons: There are many instruction CDs available in nearly any style you can think of. The advantage of this style of learning is you can listen to the CD as many times as you want. Any part that is not clear can be replayed as many times as needed. The disadvantages include the songs may not be the ones you desire to learn and the instruction is more general without any way of knowing where you are in your musical journey.

DVD Lessons: Instruction on DVD includes all the good and bad points of the CD instruction. The number one advantage to learning guitar by watching DVD video is you can see what the instructor is doing. Visual learning goes a long way toward answering the questions burning in your mind.

Music Books: Music books are a time-honored way to learn how to play the guitar. You can find more books on more different styles than most any other way to learn. You need to be proficient in reading music if you do not know the song you are learning. Most folks have a hard time getting the song right if they do not know the song they are learning.

Internet: In these modern times the Internet is a wonderful resource in learning to play the guitar. There are many websites that will show you how to play the exact notes your guitar hero plays. Membership sights are plentiful where for a small monthly fee you can learn most any style you choose.

Friends: Do not overlook your guitar playing buddies. Most guitar pickers are a friendly bunch who will be more than happy to help you along.

Slowing Down Recordings: You can purchase software that slows down your favorite recordings. This allows you to hear each phrase at a speed where you can pick out the different notes. This is a great way to learn to play.

Playing With Other People: The very best way to learn to play the guitar is to get together with other people and play. This is the fastest way to learn. You will learn more by getting out and playing with other people than you ever will sitting at home playing by yourself.

The method you decide to use to learn to play guitar is up to you. Try to practice four or five times a week for 30 minutes at a time and you will be playing guitar before you know it.