With COVID-19 not going anywhere, many are realizing that it is time to make the most out of their time home.
For you reading this, it’s safe to assume that guitar is what you want to learn. You’ll be glad to know that you’ve chosen well. Whether you’ve started considering it because of a family member, or a face-melting, emotion-stirring band, you’re in for an amazing ride.
That being said, learning music is never a straight-forward process. Sometimes it’s even harder to know where to begin. That’s when we need a little nudge in the right direction, and this article is exactly that.
Here’s how to get your guitar learning on during quarantine.
Pick it Up
This little piece of advice from the Karate Kid’s Mr. Miyagi is much more effective than you may think. If you want to learn the guitar, the best way is to pick up that thing collecting dust under your bed. If you don’t have a guitar and you’re sure you want to learn, then buy a used one. Procrastination, according to psychologist Ellen Hendriksen, Ph.D., often happens when you don’t know where or how to start.
Once you have a guitar in your hand, you’ll be achieving three things. First off, you’ll get excited about the instrument and about yourself playing it. Second, you’ll familiarize yourself with it and, by free experimenting, you’ll start figuring out what sounds you like. Third, you’ll know if it feels right or not. If that mental picture of you holding a guitar feels right, then you’re ready to move on to the next step.
Since lockdown has put an indefinite hiatus on close contact, hiring a music tutor isn’t an option, but that shouldn’t be a big deal. After all, Jimi Hendrix didn’t have a music tutor and neither did Clapton. The far better solution here is to learn from other experienced musicians through online sessions. That way, you can control your learning pace, choose the genres you want to focus on learning, and as per this guitar tricks online lessons review, you can learn the songs, riffs, and solos you want at the click of a button.
Some people approach online learning with the mentality that videos aren’t necessary, and that all they need are note tablatures (diagrams of finger placements in a song), but those people tend to miss out. While tablatures are a highly effective mode of learning, online videos provide you with the correct playing techniques, memorization tricks, and pro tips. We’re not saying that one mode is better than the other, but for you to get the full experience, it is best if you use a combination.
Telling someone to stay motivated is as effective as telling a gunshot victim to stop bleeding, but ironically, that’s what we do. What’s the first thing you do when you lose motivation? If you’re like most, you probably give yourself a hard time for not seeing your task through. The thing about motivation is that you can’t force it. Of course, you can force yourself to play guitar for a year, but are you going to be happy doing it? Are you going to be excited to hold your instrument or are you going to be glad that you’ve finished today’s chore? When you find yourself losing motivation, offer yourself a bit of kindness. Search within yourself for the reason you’re demotivated. Sometimes, we’re just scared to fail and once we get over that fear, it’s a breeze from there.
There are also times where you simply don’t feel like playing, and that should be okay. Allow yourself to take a break because if you keep guilting yourself, little by little, guitar will become a burden that only brings pain. Aside from those tips, one way we’ve found to be the most effective when it comes to motivation is listening to music. Who’s better to get your passion flowing than the artists who ignited it in the first place?
As you read your way to the end of this article, you are on your way to take the first steps in the amazing journey of becoming a musician. Take pride in your music and your playing and for your own sake, don’t feel the need to define your level of playing by comparing yourself to others. Aside from the mind-boggling amounts of variables that are guaranteed to make any type of comparison inaccurate, many a great musician has played a song with only two chords and a basic strumming pattern. Technique is grossly overrated. Music should be fun and it should come from the heart, don’t lose sight of that.