Music is a mysterious art form. With drawing, painting, making ceramic pots, writing and other forms of artistic expression you have a tangible result. You have something concrete to show for your effort and talent in most artistic endeavors, with music you have elapsed time, and sounds. Of course with recording it is possible to produce a record, or CD, a tape or other medium, but the music itself is an intangible production.
To make music you need to develop physical skills, to know how music works and to master the nature of different instruments. You have different categories of musical instrument: Wind, Percussion, Strings. Then you have electronic music, usually produced via a keyboard, or in the case of the ‘Theremin’ hand movements.
With the guitar, being a string instrument, you have to learn chord shapes to begin with, and the relationship of musical theory as it applies to the conventional tuning of the six strings. With the piano for instance, you have a keyboard laid out with the chromatic scale in sequence, not so with the guitar, it is much more difficult to decipher the scale shapes up and down the neck, across the six strings and the fingers have to work harder to achieve the notes. But just like the piano, the guitar is relatively easy to play at a rudimentary level; a lot of people master a couple of simple chords just like they master ‘Chopsticks’. But to play with skill, the guitar can be a very difficult instrument.
It is said that to master any difficult skill, or subject it takes 10,000 hours of sustained practice; I don’t think you can be prescriptive about it. I have seen students blossom into fabulous players within a few months, and people who still stumble changing from C to F after years of playing.
I remember working out the guitar parts to songs by playing vinyl records, lifting the needle on tricky bits over again. These days it is all so much easier! A video lesson allows you to replay difficult sections, and go through a lesson as many times as you need or want.
Being able to access video guitar lessons has completely revolutionized guitar education. There are quite a few providers of online guitar lessons these days, from large almost corporate platforms, to individual guitar players offering their expertise from their home-based businesses. You have the choice of specialists, electric guitar, acoustic guitar, blues, rock, metal, pop, slide, shredding, classic solos; the list goes on.
Another significant aspect of online video-based guitar lessons is their affordability, private lessons with a local teacher can wind up costing you a lot, most video programs can be accessed for a very reasonable monthly membership and while you may miss out on that individual attention, and opportunity for remedial design in your lessons, for the average player it represents top value.
Being able to have unlimited access to a wide range of lesson types, to repeat what you don’t completely understand first time round is just fantastic. I often wonder how much faster I would have made progress had I commenced learning guitar in these times, rather than struggling alone with vinyl records, books and jamming with friends in the 1970’s – but then again, I also have that distinction of learning in the ‘classic era’ of guitar playing!