Guitar Lessons : A Guide to Your Options

Guitar Lessons : A Guide to Your Options

So you want to play guitar? Guitar lessons, in some form or another, are a necessity for anyone wanting to learn to play the guitar. Established players also rely on guitar lessons to acquire new skills and move up to the next level. Finding the right lesson, course, or product sounds simple, but there are so many choices available that it’s a tough task to figure out what’s best for your individual needs. These guidelines will help you sort through your options and make a good decision.

Guitar Lessons- Private Instructor or Online?

The traditional way of learning guitar is by taking private lessons from a guitar teacher. The student typically meets with the instructor once a week for 30 minutes at a cost of about $15-25 per week. This is certainly a great option, and perhaps the best way to learn to play: under the personal guidance of a dedicated teacher. However, in many cases private lessons are not a good option due to the time, cost, and transportation factors involved.

The good news for guitar players is that there is a wide range of alternatives to private instruction. Guitar lesson and instructional books have been a mainstay for years. Technology developments then brought us lessons in the form of videotapes and DVDs, as well as multimedia software programs to run on the PC.

Today, widespread access to the internet has caused a major revolution in guitar instruction methods and availability. Now an abundance (some might say over-abundance!) of information on various guitar lesson choices is available in minutes through your favorite search engine. The array of choices is staggering, ranging from free online guitar lessons, to high-end distance learning guitar instruction leading to a certificate from Berklee College of Music,

Aside from better visibility into the options, there have also been tremendous advances in the technology used to develop and deliver the instructional material. Interactive video lessons in which the student controls the pace of learning and the tempo of the material are a good example of this. Online guitar lessons and products can be accessed immediately on the Web, either on-demand or downloaded to the local PC. This gives great flexibility on when and where to learn.

Guitar Lessons Options

Aside from private lessons, there are three basic formats of guitar lessons and instructional material.

Books- If you’re on a budget and like the idea of the portability of a book, this may be the way to go for you. Books often come with a CD to provide audio tracks. Typical Cost: $15-25

Video-based lessons- In my experience, pure video-based lessons are a good “icing on the cake” to help you learn, but not typically a good foundational guitar lesson program. They often lack supporting learning materials needed to be effective for baseline learning.

Multimedia Online Lessons– The Web, plus advances in the technology for creating learning material such as video, has really opened the door to some great multimedia guitar lesson programs.. These can be delivered and accessed on several ways: downloaded for use on your PC; accessed directly from your PC with a live web connection, or as a physical CD/DVD that you run on your PC.

Sorting through the many options can be made easier with information dedicated to this topic on various guitar websites, such as this online guitar lessons guide.


For those wanting to learn to play guitar, or to play better, there is no better time than now to take advantage to the available online guitar lesson and learning options. The realm of guitar instruction is certainly one that has benefited from the Internet!

Look for the next article in this series:

“Guitar Lesson Tips: 10 Keys to Choosing the Right Guitar Lesson”


Related articles on

“Basic Guitar Chords: “How to Easily Master the Guitar Chords You Must Know”

“Guitar Chord Diagrams: An Essential Tool for Learing to Play the Guitar”

Copyright 2005 Peter Bussey of

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