Picking up and learning an instrument can become one of the most joyful pursuits of any person’s life. The patience, discipline, and thoughtfulness required to achieve milestones in your musicianship teach valuable lessons that can apply to all areas of life. And it goes without saying that along with these personal benefits, you get to learn some music too!
Of all the instruments you or your child could learn, the guitar has a reputation for being a little tough on beginners. Your fingers might hurt when you first try to play, you might be confused about how the frets work, or no matter how much you practice, all the notes just seem a little off. That is often the case when you start taking Atlanta guitar lessons.
Beginner frustration is very common when playing guitar, and it’s rare that a novice will start off with all the right answers to both technical and musical questions he or she might have. The best thing to do in this situation is to find a guitar teacher in Atlanta. If you’re looking for guitar lessons in Atlanta, there are plenty of Lessons In Your Home teachers that are ready to get started with you as soon as possible!
Even before you start with a teacher, though, here are a few things you might want to do for yourself so you can go into lessons with a good plan to make as much progress as possible.
Listen to Different Types of Music
You might already have an idea of what songs and genres you want to learn on guitar before you go into your lesson. If so, that’s great! You have a goal you can work towards in your practice time, and your teacher can help you with this goal as well.
If you don’t, there’s no need to fret. You don’t need to have a firm answer yet, but keep in mind that listening to different kinds of music is one of the best and most rewarding parts of being a musician. Checking out different genres and artists gives you an idea of what’s possible on your instrument, and you can also find out what you like and don’t like.
When you have a good idea of what your preferences are, you can better communicate to your teacher what you want your goals to be. Even if you have a firm idea in your head already, listening to different genres can help you expand your own tastes and preferences, and that kind of perspective will only make you a better musician in the long run.
Find the Right Guitar
Nothing is more frustrating than learning a poorly functioning instrument. Especially with the guitar, it’s well worth your time to do your research and learn how to select the best guitar for a beginner guitarist.
In order to find a guitar that suits you, you’ll want to think about factors such as age, music preference, and musical goals. A five year old beginner, for example, would not do well on a full size acoustic guitar (you might want to consider a ½ size guitar first). Someone who wants to play in a rock n’ roll band might not want to get a classical nylon string guitar! Do a little digging and you’ll start to understand what your needs might be.
Also, it doesn’t hurt to take your guitar to a luthier after you’ve purchased it. This guitar technician can “set up” the guitar to your preference, not to mention change the strings and perform what other maintenance is needed so that all you need to do is plug and play.
Set a Good Practice Schedule
The number one thing that beginners don’t understand when starting out is practicing. While practicing is the most fundamental step you need to take in order to improve, it’s very easy to have a skewed idea of what practicing is and how long it takes for your playing to progress. This faulty perception of practice can lead to discouragement and quitting the instrument all together. That’s the last thing anybody wants to do!
As a beginner, you should experiment with finding what a good practice schedule is for you. A good practice schedule for a novice is one that fits in with your daily life and activities without intruding on them. Find a time in your day where you can spend ten to fifteen minutes playing guitar on a consistent basis. Make sure you have this time at least three days out of the week, if not more.
When you work with this schedule, you might find you can practice more or less depending on your progress and interest. The one thing you should aim for is consistency in your practicing. You shouldn’t necessarily try to practice four hours a day when you start out because for the first few months or so, your progress will remain relatively similar to someone who might only practice thirty minutes, and it’s also extremely difficult to keep up a practice schedule that intense.
If you keep these three things in mind before you go into a lesson, your teacher should be able to direct you along the right path for both your playing and your practicing. This can make learning the guitar a rewarding journey instead of a frustrating puzzle.
If you’re looking for a guitar teacher, at Lessons In Your Home, our instructors are thoroughly vetted, professional, and passionate about music. Our teachers will come right to your home for every lesson, plus we offer virtual music lessons, too. Our online music lessons are being taught by local music teachers with live lessons tailored to your child! Contact us today to learn more.
By Stephen Meisel