Guitar Lessons - What are Your Options?

No matter what your guitar playing level, there are guitar lessons and instructional aids available to help you learn and advance to the next level. The availability of guitar lessons and information online has made it much easier to find what you need, and to access it on demand at a reasonable cost.

Of course, taking private lessons with a guitar teacher on a weekly basis is still a great option and probably best way to go. If time, cost, or other factors don't permit private lessons, there are many great alternatives.


Since the guitar is the most popular instrument in the world, it’s no surprise that there are loads of guitar lesson and instruction books. If you like the book format, this is actually a pretty good option, because the completeness and quality of the content is high for the better ones.

It also helps that guitar lesson books often come with a CD with audio examples to support the written material. A disadvantage is that there is usually no video, which is a great tool for learning. 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. Typical Cost: $15-25

Video-based Lessons

Another common format for lessons is video. These are usually delivered as a physical product such as DVDs and video tapes for viewing on a video player or PC. They may also be delivered via the internet either streaming on-demand, or else as a downloadable file.

The advantage of video based guitar lessons is being able to see how the instructor is actually playing the material. The disadvantage is that usually isn’t any supporting written material to study and practice from, like tabulature, chord diagrams, chord charts, song chords, and lyrics, etc…all of which are key for learning new skills.

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.

Multi-media 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. The end result is you access the lesson material from your PC, and in some cases using a live internet connection.

These multimedia programs are very popular now, and for good reason. By incorporating various media such as text, graphics, audio, and video, it makes the learning experience much more real. After all, it makes the learning more fun (not to mention effective) to see and hear someone actually play a lesson, rather than just seeing it on a printed page, or just hearing it.

Most of these multimedia programs also allow for printing the lessons and key reference material like chord and scale charts, tabs, etc. This gives the best of the “hard-copy” world with online access and features like videos.

Addtional Resources

Go To: Lessons suitable for Beginners

Go to: Lessons suitable for Beginnners to Advanced Intermediate

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