Hi, thanks for stopping by my article here. I was looking at some popular questions that people wanted answers to online, and I found that people are interested to know about Beginners Guitar learning. People want to know – before they start learning – how hard it will be.
It seems that there are a lot of schools of thought on this. None of them are completely right, and none are completely wrong.
As a music teacher who sees people learn every day (usually 7 days a week), I will give my thoughts on this, and try to tie together all the different opinions on it – so that – if you’re learning guitar as a beginner, you will get the very best idea of what you’re going to expect!
It All Depends!
The answer to every one of these questions is always “depends”. I don’t want that to sound vague though, because there are some guidelines that are worth looking at that will keep you on the right path!
So let’s get into the “depends”!
It Depends on Your Learning Method!
Will you be using a Teacher, or will you be “going it alone”?
If you get a teacher – and a good teacher at that (which deserves it’s own article), you will learn a whole lot quicker than if you go it alone. It’s not that you won’t learn if you go it alone, but you will be prone to making a lot of mistakes that you would not make if you have a good – or excellent – teacher.
If for some reason you can’t or don’t want to get a teacher, you will have a harder time, but you can still learn by yourself, you just need to be ultra-organized and very focused, and you can still learn very well.
Do expect it to take longer if you teach yourself, and also do not expect it to be an easy road. You will hit barriers that your expertise and often your own resources will not equip you for! So that’s why often I get students who have been learning for years – self taught – who have reached the level where they need a professional teacher to let them improve!
So I think more patience is required if you’re learning by yourself as a self-taught guitarist!
You’re best to find an excellent tutor. If you’re determined to learn by yourself:
Your Success Depends on the Resources you use.
If you buy a cheap book that has poor teaching materials in it, you will learn in a bad and low quality way. If you invest in higher quality material, you’ll thank yourself later! Quality = Quality! That’s worth always remembering!
It Depends on Your Genetics!
From experience, I am of the belief that some people are naturally gifted in music, and others need to work a lot harder to become a good musician.
Also, if you were born into a family full of guitarists (or other musicians), you may as well have been born with a guitar in your hand. You are very fortunate.
Other people have a desire, and would not naturally be very good at an instrument but they put in the time, money and effort, and commitment – just to get good. Those people often learn more and learn deeper and learn better than the natural musicians because they need to work so hard to get that knowledge.
I guess that the key thing that ties these together is – whether it’s “nature” or “nurture”, the main thing is Commitment, and Desire, and if you have those, they make up for whatever you’re lacking!
Depends on Your Expectations
Let’s face it … some people want to get really good really quickly! If you’re a beginner today, don’t expect to play like a pro (even like Gary Moore above) unless you want to be disappointed!
If you have reasonable expectations . . . you will not be disappointed, and you will be more interested in continuing and you will be encouraged!
I guess this is a key point where a teacher or having some structured syllabus will help you. If you work through “grades” you will be a more accomplished “all round” musician. The key idea here is …
You need to have a very clear idea what you want to achieve, and then you can work out a reasonable timescale to move towards your goal, then you can break down your “bigger” goal to a series of “smaller” goals.
So if you want to learn a song that has 5 pages of music, and you give yourself 10 days to learn it, all you need to do is perfect a half page per day! At the end of the 10 days, you will have perfected the song! Simple!
It Depends on your Commitment
Of course, the final point is that of commitment. It always will be. Generally, anything you have achieved in your life will have required some degree of commitment. Learning Guitar is no different!
How much time can you commit to practicing? The more quality practice the better.
How good do you want to get? Do you want to strum a couple of songs (could be learnt quickly), or do you want to play like Steve Vai (a man who for years practiced for 10 hours at a time)?
How important is this “hobby” to you? The more important it is in your list of things you do, the more time you will give to it!
Is it Hard or Easy to Learn Guitar?
I hope that these guidelines have helped you! If you’re in the Belfast Area and you want a teacher, please do contact us and we’d be more than happy to help with your aims!
If you’re learning using a teacher, or if you’re learning alone, please do let us know how it’s going for you down in the comments section!
Also, if this helped you, please do let me know, and share your successes and lessons with other readers!