#1
Hi,

I’m new to the world of guitar playing, just a couple of weeks playing…I’ve been learning quite a lot, and of course I still have much more to learn and the rest of my life for it…..but the question is: how do you recommend that I learn?
I ask this question because I have tried several teachers that are mediocre players who have no passion for the guitar, and that shows. I have been learning the basics online…..but I have this kind of personality where I’m an easy learner…however need to work a lot on motivation…..that’s why I choose to play songs I love and I start tapping my foot and singing along. When I was younger, I started learning guitar with a teacher, and it was all about music theory, technical aspects, exercises, and so on….there are a million different ways of learning something, but this one just doesn’t work for me. If I start feeling that I need to force myself to practice technical sessions, read music theory…and other things that feel like “work” or obligation, it will be no use.
I need to learn while enjoying…I enjoy the guitar…so I should enjoy the learning process too. When taking the first lessons I decided to keep it very basic and I worked on learning the basic chords (open chords), practicing chord switching, learning some basic strumming patterns and about tones and rhythm (and timing, and beat) and then I went on to search songs for the beginner guitar player…BUT instead of watching the videos and the instructions on which chord to play each time, or reading the tabs, I preferred to just listen to the song once, and working on recognizing the chords used and when to play each by myself. Not sure if this approach is too suicidal, but I have always had a good ear, and the minute I listen to a song (of course I don’t instantly know how to play it yet) I generally recognize the chords, or do some trial and error with some of the chords that come to my mind and I´m usually able to find them, and then I start organizing the chords to be able to play the song. I prefer to work on recognizing the chords, or on finding the chords on the fretboard instead of reading tabs or following instructions. I believe I will learn faster this way, and better.
I believe also it is easy to forget how to play a song you learned by reading instructions, but not as easy to forget a song you “felt” how it had to be played. Feelings tend to stay
What do you think? Should I go more technical or structured?
I had thought about learning 100% by ear, but that would take longer because it would mean to identify the chords from zero after finding each single note, and then discovering I had just played a scale after trying to put together several notes without knowing…even if this is the way most greatest guitarists might have learned, I wouldn´t know where to start. So I preferred to study some basic technical aspects (chords, basic rhythms and strumming patterns, in some weeks I´ll start some basic scales, and intervals) so as to be able to immediately recognize them in a song and be able to apply them.

Need suggestions! Need guidance! Your help will be much appreciated….

Thanks!
#2
Hey Belmar,

Sounds like you've got a burning desire to get good at the guitar! I'm happy to see that

I think the approach you're taking is fine, but you sound very worried about where to start and how much to take on.
Also sounds like you had some horrible teachers that didn't really listen to how you like to learn.

Learning other people's songs is one of the absolute best ways to learn, even expert guitar players need to do this because they're the most practical ways you would use the guitar.

But I would suggest taking some time in your day to learn a song (or part of it) and then work on one thing technical that you want to master.
Don't try to overwhelm yourself with learning more than 1 thing at a time until you feel somewhat comfortable with it.

The best way to figure out what "the next thing to learn" is, is look at your favorite music and find something there that seems hard or it has something you can't do quite yet. Find out exercises or maybe a youtube video on that subject and start working on it.

Learning guitar is definitely a lifelong learning process. So don't feel like you need to catch up or you need to be so sharply efficient (unless you're trying to get into music school or land some audition). Learn something new and enjoy that you have one more thing to your guitar arsenal and it'll be a very enjoyable journey.

Let me know if you need more help!
"Every time you pick up your guitar to play, play as if it's the last time" -Eric Clapton
www.guitareasier.com
#3
one of the greatest things about learning guitar is that it isn't what you might call a "linear process". that is to say, while a structured approach has its benefits, it is not a requisite to learn how to alternate pick before learning how to play a scale -- although knowing alternate picking will definitely make your life easier when doing so!

theory, however, is very linear. every concept you'll learn builds on other concepts you've previously studied. in this way, it's very much like a language. but theory is definitely to your benefit to learn. it will help you internalize and utilize new musical concepts in a quicker and more efficient way.

your ear, however, is, at minimum, equally important. without that, any aspiring musician takes a huge hit. do not neglect your ear training, and make it a habit to sing everything you play. again, it will help you to internalize and utilize new musical concepts in a quicker and more efficient way.

you'll get the best results if you do all of what you've said, honestly. be objective and learn how to spot weaknesses in your playing and musicianship, and take whatever steps you can to strengthen yourself. this may include learning theory -- but if you are open to that you will find that progress, though incremental, will be very solid.
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
#5
You sound like I was a long time ago. A lousy piano teacher nearly killed my interest in learning musical skills altogether, while my mate had a good empathetic teacher and went on the become a highly successful part-time pro. I didn't get into playing the guitar until I really wanted to learn songs and techniques. - So this is it, you have to want to learn to play music, not the guitar. The guitar is merely a tool for expressing yourself. However, from what you have written, I think you would benefit from finding a good teacher whose interests are the same as yours.