“If you want to be a rock star or just be famous, then run down the street naked, you’ll make the news or something. But if you want music to be your livelihood, then play, play, play and play! And eventually you’ll get to where you want to be.” - Eddie Van Halen
While you can’t send a text message with your guitar, you can learn to play the guitar on your smartphone. In the UK, we spend more time browsing the internet than we do sleeping.
Learning to play guitar is easier with the help of a dedicated guitar tutor. However, not everyone has the means to regularly pay for private guitar tuition.
Why not use all this time spent browsing to help you learn how to play the guitar?
There are so many different websites, blogs, and videos dedicated to learning how to play the guitar.
So how can you find them?
In this guide, we’ll tell you!
Which Are the Best Apps for Learning How to Play the Guitar?
Since you have your smartphone on you at all times (even in the bathroom), perhaps you could use it for learning how to play the guitar or more about music.
When learning with a private tutor, you have their undivided attention during the hour they’re teaching you. They’ll correct you when you get something wrong, like the position of your hand. However, once the lesson’s over, you’re on your own.
Your smartphone is probably always in your pocket or within reach. Guitar apps can be used for practising even when you don’t have a guitar to hand, on public transport, or on your lunch break, for example. Additionally, they can send you reminders when it’s time to practise your guitar playing.
That’s pretty good motivation, isn’t it?
They’re also an enjoyable way to learn to play the electric guitar or the acoustic guitar. It doesn’t really matter what your favourite style of music is as it’s possible to find an app that works for you, can teach you the chords you need to know, how to play a riff, how to do barre chords, or how to play a certain scale.
Here are some of the best guitar apps on the market:
- Coach Guitar: A virtual guitar teacher that’s dedicated to absolute guitar novices. The video tutorials are fun and interactive.
- My Music Teacher: Thanks to this app, you can get in touch with real teachers. Furthermore, thanks to the microphone on your mobile, it can detect if you play a wrong note and correct you in real time.
- iReal Pro: There are 1,500 chord diagrams available on the app which allow you to work on different musical styles such as jazz, blues rock, or even bossa nova.
- Yousician: This app also gives you real-time feedback and suggests video lessons to you.
It’s definitely possible to get better at playing the guitar, improve your fingerpicking, or familiarise yourself with the fretboard thanks to digital apps.
Websites for Becoming a Guitarist
You can also learn how to play the guitar online from the comfort of your office chair in front of your computer.
Whether you’re tuning your guitar, learning a pentatonic scale, playing along to a metronome, or studying music theory, you can find a website to help you with teaching yourself how to play the guitar.
A music school won’t work for every budget. Additionally, if you’re not comfortable in group classes, a private tutor might be your only option. Thus, the internet is a good alternative for those wanting to get started with playing the guitar.
If you’re motivated, there’s nothing stopping you from learning something new, such as playing the guitar, with the help of other guitarists online.
Here are some of the best guitar websites:
- Tabs4acoustic: from music theory to practical guitar techniques, tablature, the riff library, and backing tracks, this website pretty much has everything a budding guitarist could ever want.
- ShredAcademy: Every guitarist should add this website to their favourites. If you want to play the guitar, this is one of the first websites you should start with. There are over 100 online guitar lessons for beginner guitar techniques like strumming and picking.
- Ultimate-Guitar: If you can't read sheet music, this site needs to be put into your favourites bar now. Ultimate-Guitar is arguably the best website for tablature. Since guitar tabs are user-submitted, there are often several versions of each one. However, users also rate the tabs so you can quickly find the best tab according to other users votes.
- Jammit: This is a website and also an app for iOS, Mac, and PC. If there's a certain song you're trying to learn on the guitar, this is probably the place to go. You can find a song you like, slow it down, loop a tricky section, and jam along until your fingers are dancing on the strings just like your favourite artists. If you're struggling with a certain solo, open up the tabs on Ultimate-Guitar and jam along with Jammit!
After that, you can start working on becoming the next Hendrix!
Which Are the Best Guitar Blogs?
If you’re looking to buy a guitar, learning how to restring a guitar, or tuning your guitar, guitar blogs are a useful resource.
Most consumers prefer to buy a product following a recommendation from a blog rather than from an advert. Blogs are like word of mouth but digital. If a friend tells you about a great new shampoo that’s worked wonders for them, you’re far more likely to try it than if an advert told you that.
The same is true for bloggers. If you regularly read a blog, you start to get the feeling that you know the person and you start to trust their opinion more, especially when they try out new products.
While a lot of bloggers are paid for their product reviews or given free versions of products in order to review them, they’re still free to criticise certain aspects of the product in question.
Thus, before you choose your next guitar or you’re not sure whether you want an Ibanez, Fender, or Gibson, it might be worthwhile having a look at different guitar blogs.
Here are some of the best guitar blogs around:
- Truefire is a website offering online guitar lessons. The website features over 33,000 guitar lessons for a variety of different styles and levels. It doesn't matter whether you're an absolute beginner or an experienced guitar player, play blues guitar or face-melting rock guitar solos, you're bound to find something on their website.
- You might be familiar with the Guitar World magazine. If not, don't worry, their website is also really good. If you're looking for a guitar lesson, information on how to play guitar, articles on different techniques, chord progressions, strumming patterns, or guitar gear, you should definitely pay their website a visit.
- Guitar Tricks: If you're looking for a particular guitar lesson or just how to play guitar in general, this is a website that you should visit. In addition to loads of content for beginners, there are also blogs that any musician can enjoy on playing the guitar, gear, different exercises and techniques, as well as articles on general guitar culture.
- The Premier Guitar magazine has been going for over a decade now and includes plenty of articles on playing the guitar, reviews of acoustic guitars, electric guitars, and bass guitars, interviews with famous guitarists, and articles on the music industry.
- Guitar Habits: This blog has a huge variety of interesting articles on guitar playing, beginner guitar lessons, tutorials on how to play certain songs, and reviews of gear for both the acoustic guitar and the electric guitar, not to mention the guitars themselves.
If you’re going to teach yourself how to play the guitar, it’s a good idea to surround yourself with other guitarists, even if you do this virtually.
Can You Learn the Guitar on YouTube?
Learning to play guitar is much easier with videos.
You can break down a song, riff, or lick, and watch it over and over again. You can look at the guitarist’s posture, the positioning of their fingers on the frets, and see whether or not they’re using a capo, for example. Of course, your virtual teacher still needs to be a good teacher otherwise you won’t really learn anything.
There are plenty of guitar tutorials on YouTube.
Did you know that most of the population watch YouTube at least once a day and two-thirds of those who do watch it multiple times?
When it comes to guitar tutorials, there are good ones and there are bad ones. Fortunately for you, we’ve found a few of the better ones for you to check out.
- GuitarJamz: This YouTube channel has been around for a long time and is definitely worthy of your attention if you're looking for beginner guitar lessons. Whether you're looking for beginner guitar lessons or videos on becoming a better guitar player, you'll find them on Marty's channel.
- Jamplay: This YouTube channel includes guitar lessons on a variety of techniques including strumming, picking, and improving your guitar playing. These online guitar lessons are definitely worth subscribing to on your YouTube account.
- GuitarLessons365Song: This is another channel with over half a million subscribers and plenty of great video content for you to sink your teeth into. If you want to learn how to play a certain song, this is one of the first channels you should check out.
- JustinGuitar: Justin Sandercoe's YouTube channel, just like his site and blog, is an incredible resource for guitar lessons and tutorials on how to play guitar.
It’s really easy to learn guitar songs on the internet as you learn chords, the posture you should adopt, and how to tune your guitar.
So are you ready to start learning how to play the guitar online?