self taught vs guitar lessons


3donkey
Full Access
Joined: 12/21/10
Posts: 105
Hi all,

I have been playing guitar for about 4 years now and I actually made a lot of progresses as "self taught" ( helping myself with guitartricks and other free good lessons on youtube ). I learned by practicing on songs with a lot of challenging stuff and I always thought I could do everything without a real teacher. But now I m actually starting to change my point of view and decided to start real lessons from an experienced teacher, since I think my progress would go much faster that way... instead of just keeping playing without a real directions.

What do you think about it? Anyone got the same experience?
# 1
GT Staff
Administrator
Joined: 06/29/15
Posts: 613
Originally Posted by: 3donkeyHi all,

I have been playing guitar for about 4 years now and I actually made a lot of progresses as "self taught" ( helping myself with guitartricks and other free good lessons on youtube ). I learned by practicing on songs with a lot of challenging stuff and I always thought I could do everything without a real teacher. But now I m actually starting to change my point of view and decided to start real lessons from an experienced teacher, since I think my progress would go much faster that way... instead of just keeping playing without a real directions.

What do you think about it? Anyone got the same experience?


To be honest, it depends on your style of learning.

Are you a self-motivated type? Do you thrive on setting your own schedule and doing your own thing? If so, you'd probably do fine without a teacher.

Other people "need" a teacher to keep them on the right track and to stay motivated. However, even if you're not that type of person, you could still certainly benefit from the help.

There's no wrong answer. Would you say you're "uncertain" about the direction you're going in?
# 2
razzlemacher
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Joined: 09/02/11
Posts: 55
I'll give an example here. My timing with the music I play is pretty bad. I have good fretboard skills but when it comes to separating the beats and hitting the notes right before or after the beat, I'm quite hopeless. In fact I was bad in a way that I didn't even know I was bad until I recorded myself playing. It was painful.

The only way to fix this for me has been to sit in front of a guitar instructor that plays the drum or watches me and tells me when my timing is off and shows me why. This is finally helping me even though progress is slow.

Could I get this kind of one on one help from a website? Not really. I use guitar tricks for their superb song collection and their instructors who will answer any question under the sky about learning, equipment or playing music. These guys are pros and are very cool.

GT has videos on techniques such as pinch harmonics that I use for improving specific songs which are also on the GT site (like Sweet Home Alabama). I've finally improved enough to undertake artist studies that GT has as well.

In short - GT is awesome and keeps me going with videos and pro level tabs and helpful instructors that you can hit up any time for any questions. But I needed a private instructor to fix some of my serious playing issues that can only be addressed in person. Your mileage may vary.
# 3
JeffS65
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Joined: 10/07/08
Posts: 1,600
Originally Posted by: 3donkeyHi all,

I have been playing guitar for about 4 years now and I actually made a lot of progresses as "self taught" ( helping myself with guitartricks and other free good lessons on youtube ). I learned by practicing on songs with a lot of challenging stuff and I always thought I could do everything without a real teacher. But now I m actually starting to change my point of view and decided to start real lessons from an experienced teacher, since I think my progress would go much faster that way... instead of just keeping playing without a real directions.

What do you think about it? Anyone got the same experience?


I was largely self-taught. I really only had a few lessons but I did learn that sometimes you need to ask a question while in front of somebody. A teacher is never a bad thing but it is useful to find one that meets what you need. Not all teachers are made the same and not all will teach in a way that works for you.

I stopped going to teachers very early on when, after learning a couple of songs, he said to me 'We're going to teach you your style'...What!? That was kinda it for me. Years later after I really did progress on my own to a reasonably advanced skill level, one of the local guitar gurus asked if he could give me a few lessons. Odd, right? He only ever taught people he liked, didn't do it for the money and lessons were by 'invite' only...Thing was, it was only 3 lessons and he taught more in those three about playing that almost anything I learned the years prior. He knew exactly what I needed.

That's the point, finding someone that can have insight to what you need and can interpret the things you are challenged with and turn them around. Some people can just do it themselves but that's rare. I was really pretty good on my own but those three lessons brought my playing to a different level.

If you go looking, you may not find the ideal teacher right away and need to try a few (my wife is going through that with finding a good mandolin teacher right now). With that said, GT can be a huge resource for songs but also other style lessons and technical knowledge that you can't stuff in to a short session.
# 4