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As a piano teacher, there’s is naturally going to be some bias here. But after so many years working at Elite Music Academy, I’ve been asked hundreds of times about piano vs guitar lessons for a beginner. In short, I believe the piano is easier to start with especially for young kids and adults with little time or patience. Aside from that, there are many pros and cons to learning each instrument first, and it boils down to which sounds the most appealing how hard the student is willing to practice.
If you’re looking for the best piano teachers in Toronto or East York, we recommend Nick Maclean for students who love jazz. For aspiring composers and classical players, Constantine Caravassilis would be a great match. If you’re more into pop and R&B, you’ll love studying with Jordan Nicholas Kane.
I was lucky enough to see him play several times growing up in Austin, Texas. Unmatched in my opinion, not only for his ability to improvise at both fast and slow tempos, but also in his skill at blending with and ornamenting the improv of his fellow musicians.
A few guitars feature stereo output, such as Rickenbacker guitars equipped with Rick-O-Sound. There are a variety of ways the “stereo” effect may be implemented. Commonly, but not exclusively, stereo guitars route the neck and bridge pickups to separate output buses on the guitar. A stereo cable then routes each pickup to its own signal chain or amplifier. For these applications, the most popular connector is a high-impedance 1/4-inch plug with a tip, ring and sleeve configuration, also known as a TRS phone connector. Some studio instruments, notably certain Gibson Les Paul models, incorporate a low-impedance three-pin XLR connector for balanced audio. Many exotic arrangements and connectors exist that support features such as midi and hexaphonic pickups.
This black beauty from ESP’s LTD shows off true rock style and a very playable neck at a price that doesn’t break the bank. The EC-10 features a glossy black well-contoured single-cutaway body made from solid basswood. There’s a bolt-on thin U-shaped maple neck, with a rosewood fretboard, and 24 extra-jumbo frets, which makes fast playing and string bending a breeze. As we highlight in our full review, the EC-10 is voiced by two ESP-designed passive LH-100 humbuckers at the neck and bridge positions, which are loud enough to cope with rock and metal lead playing, although articulate and warm when playing without distortion. Hardware is kept simple, with a tune-o-matic style bridge and stopbar tailpiece, and a single master volume and tone control knob.
Aside from possible engineering advantages, some feel that in relation to the rising cost of rare tonewoods, man-made materials may be economically preferable and more ecologically sensitive. However, wood remains popular in production instruments, though sometimes in conjunction with new materials. Vigier guitars, for example, use a wooden neck reinforced by embedding a light, carbon fiber rod in place of the usual heavier steel bar or adjustable steel truss rod. After-market necks made entirely from carbon fiber fit existing bolt-on instruments. Few, if any, extensive formal investigations have been widely published that confirm or refute claims over the effects of different woods or materials on electric guitar sound.
The discussion highlighted a relatively new trend, in an effort to explore the ongoing relevance of acoustic guitars: performers who wouldn’t normally be associated with guitars potentially bringing them onstage. The fascination of rap and hip-hop artists with 1990s alternative guitar-based music was a prime example. The upshot is that it can be good to have a guitar in your hands that doesn’t look like it aspires to be Willie Nelson’s legendary Trigger or Father John Misty’s Martin D-28.
Guthrie Govan’s Creative Guitar is the end all be all for learning guitar. Buy it and you will gain an amazing insight into playing and philosophy behind it. It’s honestly great for everyone, from beginners to experts. Get it my friend.
A moveable chord, unlike an open-position chord, does not include open strings. If you can move, without rearranging your fingers, from position to position on the neck of the guitar, it’s a moveable chord.
Many people think that electric guitars are going to be loud when they are plugged in… well, they do have a volume control, so you can control the volume. Also, be aware that you do not have to plug them in! I do probably half of my practice on electric guitar without any amp at all. It’s good to get the notes ringing out loud and clear without an amp, so as a beginner you might want to put all your money into getting a cool guitar and leave getting an amp until later.
The white circles along the top of the chord tell you that you should still be strumming those strings with no fingers pressed on them. If you see an X above a string that means you should try not to strum that string while playing the chord.
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You sure can! That’s how I learned. They’re not really designed for that but nothing should get damaged and it’s fine for learning. If it’s an expensive instrument you might look into getting a Flamenco Guard to strop the pick damaging the wood, but I think war wounds can make a guitar look cool and so I never used anything like that!
23 Duane Allman Howard Duane Allman was an American guitarist, session musician, and co-founder and leader of the Allman Brothers Band until his death in a motorcycle crash in 1971, when he was 24 years old.
Piano lessons provide for more instant gratification. It is simply easier to play a note – all you have to do is sit up straight, pick your wrists up, gently curl your fingers and press a key. Granted, the piano does become tricky later on when you start to play rhythmically independent notes between different fingers and hands. With guitar, there’s more coordination involved in the beginning. Students have to learn how to pluck and fret the string at the same time without dampening the sound, whereas beginner piano students won’t use two hands right away.
You’re right, guitar playing is not about competition. I made the list for fun, to inspire people to listen to great guitar players. And for people to comment to the list and add their personal favorites.
Not only can he make amazing guitar riffs, he can play so many other instruments! He revolutionized Punk in his era and still is. Not only with a pretty face and a voice to go with it, but his guitar trumps all.
Hal Leonard’s series of books may be more responsible than any other series of books for people learning the guitar. It may be an understatement to call it a standard for students starting to learn the guitar. This book covers introductory topics like how to read music, chords, different scales and keys. Beyond that, it moves into advanced techniques and music theory in later books. The book is available as a stand alone, but we think the 3 CDs that come with the book are really useful, especially for practicing. It is so helpful to improving timing as a fundamental skill to play along with the CDs that are included with the book.
Invented in 1931, the amplified electric guitar was adopted by jazz guitarists, who wanted to play single-note guitar solos in large big band ensembles. Early proponents of the electric guitar on record included Les Paul, Lonnie Johnson, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, T-Bone Walker, and Charlie Christian. During the 1950s and 1960s, the electric guitar became the most important instrument in pop music.[1] It has evolved into an instrument that is capable of a multitude of sounds and styles in genres ranging from pop and rock to country music, blues and jazz. It served as a major component in the development of electric blues, rock and roll, rock music, heavy metal music and many other genres of music.
The best, if you look at it objectivley. Hendrix came along in the sixties and revolutionised the instrument like no other. A great live improviser, he also wrote amazing songs, and has inspired just about anyone who has picked up a guitar since. – Floods
Since the output of an electric guitar is an electric signal, it can be electronically altered by to change the timbre of the sound. Often, the signal is modified using effects such as reverb and distortion and “overdrive”, the latter effect is considered a key element of electric blues guitar music and rock guitar playing.
35 Zakk Wylde Zakk Wylde is an American musician, singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and occasional actor who is best known as the former guitarist for Ozzy Osbourne, and founder of the heavy metal band Black Label Society.
The lesson curriculum is not really my style, but all teachers vary. It focuses too soon on too much theory, and I believe in getting my students playing and having fun, thereby develop a love for the instrument quickly, rather than indulging in theoretical studies.
Compared to an acoustic guitar, which has a hollow body, electric guitars make much less audible sound when their strings are plucked, so electric guitars are normally plugged into a guitar amplifier and speaker. When an electric guitar is played, string movement produces a signal by generating (i.e., inducing) a small electric current in the magnetic pickups, which are magnets wound with coils of very fine wire. The signal passes through the tone and volume circuits to the output jack, and through a cable to an amplifier.[17] The current induced is proportional to such factors as string density and the amount of movement over the pickups.
So this book is a great way to keep on top of practicing valuable techniques to build a very solid foundation over the course of a year. What this book is not good for is licks or detailed instruction about technique. It is much more focused on giving you a set schedule and practice regime that will build your skills. For people who get distracted and are unsure of what to practice in order to maximize their time and improve their skills, this book is a good way to remain focused and build a valuable skill set while learning guitar.
Avoid the thin acoustics that look like electrics. They usually don’t sound good either acoustically or plugged in. This includes Fender’s ‘Telecoustic’ (I otherwise recommend Fender). I’m not really a big fan of any guitars made of anything other than wood either—none of that carbon stuff—just keep it simple.
On guitar, the note patterns are a little more complex because each string has a different arrangement of notes. For a beginner, it is much more difficult to know which string to use when the pitch goes higher or lower. Unlike a piano, the guitar needs to be tuned before you play, which is another learning curve students must conquer quickly. Otherwise, they will only be able to tune once a week when they see their guitar teacher.
Whoa whoa wait, what? This pop artist? A guitar player? If all you’ve ever heard from Mayer is Your Body Is Wonderland, or Daughters, then you’ve got to give his album Continuum a listen to. He is no Shakespeare, but his guitar playing speaks to your soul. His songs will make most glorified tough guys miss their old girlfriend, and the rest just go to a corner and cry. If you think that his songs are all too depressing, then watch some videos of him playing. His guitar face is priceless.
28 Angus Young Angus McKinnon Young is an Australian guitarist of Scottish origin, best known as the co-founder, lead guitarist, songwriter and sole constant member of the Australian hard rock band AC/DC. When performing live he does his own version of Chuck Berry’s “duck walk” and has also spun on his side while …read more.
So with most beginners their introduction to their instrument comes from a book. Their parents get them a shiny new guitar on their birthday or for Christmas, and there’s generally an accompanying Mel Bay beginner’s guide. That’s really not a bad thing at all; guitar players all over the world have started just like that.
An excerpt: “Quite a few of the artists I’ve worked with have told me that my own personal style might be described as flashy. In this book, we will definitely cover the hotter aspects of playing, not only regarding lead styles, but rhythm techniques, too. What I’ve found after years of experience in the studio and onstage with many different types of artists is that a guitarist can modify his playing and adapt it to the requirements of the particular situation while still revealing his own distinctive musical personality.”
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The cost of an electric guitar can range from under $100 to several thousands of dollars. There are a multitude of factors that contribute to the cost of electric guitars. The condition of a guitar is probably the most important of those factors. A guitar will not be worth much at all if it is unplayable and in need of serious repair. The age is another important part of determining the electric guitar cost. When the condition of the guitar is nearly perfect, the general rule is that guitar cost rises as the age of the guitar rises. This may not be intuitive, but there is a great demand for well-kept older guitars. The components of the guitar (hardware) make a difference in the guitar cost as well. Guitars with floating bridges (Floyd Rose for example) will usually be more expensive than the same model with a fixed bridge. The quality and quantity of the guitar’s pickups will influence the price. The “machinery” of the guitar includes its metal parts, like the bridge, tuners, and various plates. Machinery can be plated with different metals, altering the cost of the guitar. The construction of the instrument also has an effect on the price. Heavier and more sonically pleasant woods typically add to the cost while necks that are attached to the body in one-piece are often more expensive than those that are bolted on. The aesthetics of the electric guitar, mainly attributed to the paintjob and finish, also affect the guitar cost.

Called the “California Series,” they aren’t going to be for everybody. The quick take here is that these are acoustics for electric players — and very much intended to deliver a visual punch when played live.
With similar specs and style to the 1952 original – but without the $10,000 price tag – this LP-100 from Epiphone demands attention. As highlighted in our full review, with a classic Les Paul shape, the body is crafted from solid mahogany with a maple top, and features a bolt-on mahogany neck, with rosewood fingerboard, and 22 medium-jumbo frets. The guitar has solid hardware, including a LockTone tune-o-matic bridge and StopBar tailpiece, and 14:1 die-cast machine heads. Good looks and hardware aside, this electric guitar sounds fantastic. This is thanks to the two humbuckers – a 700T at the bridge and 650R at the neck – which offer full, warm tones that adapt to the majority of styles. Perfect for a beginner, although by no means an entry-level guitar.
Thank you for writing this article, now I have all the time I need in buying my first electric guitar. I’ve been playing acoustic for like 10 years. I think this is the right time to upgrade my skills.
To conclude, you’ll need to have an idea of your favoured guitar’s appearance, how you want it to sound and what you’re willing to pay. Hopefully those three variables will have gone some way to whittling down the options into something resembling a shortlist. We’ll take a deeper look now at some of the more popular styles of guitars, along with giving an indication of the settings in which they’d excel and examples of both entry and, for context, top level models.
We start this list with a true classic in the world of electric guitar: the Les Paul Standard. For beginners, this is as close to a Gibson Les Paul as you want to get – and the affordable price really allows you to. With authentic Les Paul single-cutaway style – in an array of traditional and modern colors – there’s a solid mahogany body with a maple top, a slim D-shaped set mahogany neck, with rosewood fretboard, and 22 medium jumbo frets. Lovely to hold and fun to play. The sound comes from two Alnico Classic humbuckers at the neck and bridge, which are excellent at handling both clean and overdriven tones, with the warmth and tone you’d expect from Epiphone. In all, an outstanding electric guitar for beginners, as we state in our full review.

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