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Is TrueFire the Best Guitar Instruction Website?

Is TrueFire the Best Guitar Instruction Website?

I really struggle with online guitar instruction websites.

Not in any technical sense – I know how to use a website! But even as somebody who has developed their career online, I struggle with the idea that this is the best solution.

There’s a good chance that I’m just showing my age. I come from the generation of guitarists that wanted to be the next Noel Gallagher, had a few lessons from a local guitar teacher, and off I went doing my own thing, none of which led to being the next Noel Gallagher.

The internet wasn’t really a viable resource when I was learning. I remember the owner of the local guitar shop saying “have you got the internet at home?” – I have it right in my pocket, all the time now, but it was a perfectly legitimate question back then.

But now, we live in the future, and there’s an onslaught of websites claiming to help you learn! And obviously, each one is claiming to be better than the other.

Here, we’ll take a look at one called TrueFire.

Core features and specs

truefire guitar lessons

Like many online guitar instruction sites, TrueFire tries to cram an awful lot of stuff in. I appreciate why they do that – they want to offer more stuff than their competitors – but it makes cynical guys like me immediately think “Is this a jack-of-all-trades, master of none scenario?”

Let me take you through the stuff they offer.

  • Instructional video lessons
  • Discounts on instruction books
  • One-on-one lessons
  • Backing tracks for you to play along with
  • Apps for you to follow courses when you’re out and about
  • Video jam tracks where you control the mix

I’ll be honest they might have more stuff – as I say, they’re trying to cram quite a bit in here, so it’s easy to miss things.

This will work well for…

online private guitar lessons

This is a difficult one to answer – I feel like it’s got something for everyone!

I would say this would get the most use from beginners and intermediate players, but there does seem to be quite a bit on offer for experienced players too.

In saying that, it will depend on the experienced player in question. Some experienced players will be like “Lol, I know I’m great, I don’t need to a stinking computer telling me what to do.”

Whereas others might be inclined to feel like you can never stop learning, or can never know enough, or might want to find out some more about another style or have some point of their playing they feel a little polishing on.

It will also – and this is probably very obvious – work well for those who are comfortable learning from a screen. That isn’t everybody.

Another possibly excessively obvious point is that even if you go through all levels of lessons on this, it’s lessons, it’s based on other people’s work, and it’s incredibly prescriptive.

This may not work so well if you favor more experimental guitar sounds like maybe Tom Morello or Jack White.

Pricing options

So, the thing with TrueFire, unlike other online guitar instruction platforms, is that you pay for what you use.

It’s completely free to sign up and register an account with them, and then the cost can vary wildly depending on what you want to do. One-to-one tuition can go as high or as low as the tutor themselves want to charge.

This will be a weird compromise between what level of skill they’re offering to teach you, and how much you’re willing to pay. The lower the level it is that’s being taught, the less it’s likely to cost.

Think of it this way: if a teacher charges $10 for a beginner lesson, and has 100 students, that’s $1,000. If only 25 of those 100 beginner students keep with the guitar until they become experienced, that’s a massive drop in that teacher’s income.

The self-instruction courses might suit some learners better. These vary pretty wildly. Some of them got up to $30 or $40, but there’s usually a sale to be found so you don’t end up paying quite that much.

Other things you can pay for as you go along.

Features

online teaching sessions

The instructions and ability to take lessons online are cool if that’s how you like to learn.

For me, one of my favorite features is the jam tracks. I guess this feature is pretty squarely aimed at intermediate and experienced guitarists.

Straight off, you get 200 backing tracks of various styles, tempos, and keys for you to jam along to. For $19.95, you’re allowed to download those tracks. I find that an odd one, but I guess there’s some kind of demand for it. In an era of Spotify and other streaming sites, do people even download MP3s anymore?

It has a blog which seems to primarily focus on lesson related listicles. It looks like it’s updated regularly too – that’s nice to see.

It has a forum, where I guess you can chat with other users about progress, queries, sharing ideas about technique and gear, and complain about things. You know, usual forum stuff!

It seems fairly hidden away, which I find odd, but one of the things that TrueFire has that I thought would have been front and center of its promotion, is the big name teachers that it has. I haven’t been able to work out if they’re exclusive video lesson to TrueFire, but they have stuff from Steve Vai, Larry Carlton, and Tommy Emmanuel.

Usability

I generally consider the usability of a product in terms of its life cycle: how long will a customer want to use this for.

And I’m honestly struggling to figure that out for TrueFire!

In terms of actual use, if you can navigate any other website, you can find your way around this one.

Like, sure, it’s free to sign up, and it has a limited number of free stuff to do. But after that, things can look a little pricey, especially if you’re a kid looking to spend your pocket money.

But, in saying that, you can find some pretty great deals, plus, once you’ve spent the money, it should keep you busy for a few weeks, meaning it’ll likely work out much cheaper than going to an actual local guitar tutor.

There’s also the issue of any self-learning platform: student discipline. You really have to commit to it, and designate time for it every day or week, or whatever you can or want. If you can’t manage that, you can’t blame TrueFire!

It’s probably a good idea to try the free lessons before handing over cash, even if it’s way below your ability level, just to make sure this learning style is something that will keep you engaged.

Pros Cons
  • A more affordable alternative to in-person guitar instruction
  • Ideal for those who don’t have access to local guitar lessons
  • All the standard styles are there, like rock and blues
  • The free lessons are useful for getting a feel for the platform
  • The jam tracks are cool, especially the videos
  • It may not be the best learning method for everyone
  • Self-discipline is very much required!
  • It can look pricey to a young beginner


In Conclusion

Learning Paths

I was so incredibly skeptical of TrueFire when I started this review, and I feel bad for that now.

If getting to lessons is a pain, and you really have the commitment to learning, I don’t see why anybody wouldn’t get a great deal out of this website.

I think the most important thing for it is a commitment, and that’s on you, not on TrueFire. It really is the sort of thing you need to just sit and do – a difficult task when you have a day job and family. When I’m doing something like that, I try and just get 20 minutes per day at it, which is still a challenge.

But I would definitely recommend checking out TrueFire, whether you’re a beginner or a more experienced player who wants to focus on one aspect of their playing.

Gibson Learn and Master Guitar Review

Gibson Learn and Master Guitar Lessons: My Comprehensive Review

If you’re interested in purchasing a DVD course for learning the guitar, you’ve come to the right place. Out of all of the DVD instruction classes that I’ve purchased, the Gibson Learn and Master Guitar was the best one that I’ve ever purchased.

I often recommend these DVDs to my students who are looking to learn some extra work while they’re not having their private lessons. I can always tell which students have practiced with the Gibson Learn and Master review because I can physically see and hear the difference in their playing capabilities.

With your purchase of the Gibson Learn and Master Guitar, you will receive:

  • Twenty DVDs
  • Five Jam Along Audio CDs
  • 108 Page Work Book
  • Forty Hours of Instruction

Each lesson is divided into three different parts; some lessons have video tip sections, practice sections, and play along sections. Below, I have a list of some of the topics that the Gibson Learn and Master Guitar talks about:

  • Reading Music
  • Chords
  • Strumming
  • How to read tablature
  • Finger picking
  • Bending
  • Tapping
  • Slides
  • Ear training
  • Styles
  • Scales
  • The Basics
  • Solo playing
  • How to play Classical, Blues, Jazz, Rock, Funk, and Country

Personally, I believe that this course would be perfect for any beginning guitarist to take. Each lesson allows you to learn at your own pace, which is critical for beginning guitarists. All of the basics are covered with these DVDs and each lesson goes into thorough detail.

However, I also believe that this course would be a great brush up course for an intermediate or advanced player, especially if you don’t know how to read music, don’t know any music theory, or don’t know your scales.

The DVDs

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Each DVD is taught by the same guitar teacher, Steve. Steve does an incredible job of keeping a steady progressive rhythm with the DVDs; they don’t go too fast or too slow.

At the beginning of each lesson, Steve will introduce a new topic or lesson, talk about some of the common questions that are associated with this new topic, and show you how to properly execute each lesson.

There is an up-close view of Steve playing the guitar; one camera is focused on his left hand, while the other camera is focused on his right. This allows beginners to be able to understand how Steve is executing the new lesson that is being taught.

After the lesson, Steve will give you as an assignment for the next session. He takes time after the lesson to go over the most important details and points that you should practice before you go onto the next lesson.

There is also a work shop section in the DVDs that allow you to practice the assignment material along with Steve, which allows beginners to hear and see the exercises that they
are practicing.

There are ten guitar lesson DVDs that educate beginners on core guitar subjects. However, there are also ten additional work shop DVDs that have more bonus material in them. On these ten disks, there are twenty sessions of extra practice material that allow you to truly master the lessons and concepts you were taught on the first ten DVDs.

The CDs

Along with your purchase of the Gibson Learn and Master Guitar course, you will also receive five Jam Along CDs that you can use to help you practice; all of the exercises that are in the book that you receive are played at three different speeds (slow, medium, and fast) to help
you learn.

The Book

The Gibson Learn and Master Guitar also comes with a 108 paged book that discuses all of the lessons and exercises that you learned on the DVDs. The book has been divided into sessions that correlate to the DVD’s lessons, which gives the book a very clear lay out that is very easy to follow and read.

Is it worth it?

If you are beginning guitar player, yes! If you’ve never learned how to read tablature, sheet music, or don’t know much about musical notation, I would also suggest this course for you. However, if you are an intermediate or advanced player who knows how to read tab or sheet music, I would suggest that you look for a different course.

Th Gibson Learn and Master Guitar course really does a thorough job of teaching the fundamentals of playing guitar and Gibson thoroughly focuses on reading your standard music notation. If for some strange reason, you don’t want to learn how to read tablature or sheet music, this is also not the course for you.

I also want to warn beginners who are thinking about purchasing this course that just like all other courses, the Gibson Learn and Master Guitar course is more of a summary of playing guitar and doesn’t go into deep, direct detail of specific techniques or lessons.

This course is not going to teach you everything about playing guitar, in other words. Think of this course to be more of a crash course of learning how to play different music styles, such as Finger style, Jazz, and Rock.

My biggest complaint about the Gibson Learn and Master Guitar course is the price. I believe that this course is a bit pricey, especially for beginners.

This is not a budget guitar learning course, but if you think about the quality of the lessons you’re learning, as well as all of the learning materials you’re receiving, it’s pretty affordable. The cost of this course is equivalent to what a month of private lessons would cost a beginner.

With that said, this course is often on sale. Even if you decide to not purchase it while it’s on sale, Gibson does offers customers to break up the payment and pay for the course over a period of four months.

If you’re totally unhappy with the course, Gibson offers a No Risk Guarantee, which will allow beginners to return the course after 60 days in order to receive a full refund of the original purchasing price.

Another Alternative to Consider

Jamplay Guitar Lessons-

JamPlay is another course that offers online lessons that are similar to the Gibson Learn and Master Guitar program. However, JamPlay was created with the idea of more than just a beginners needs in mind.

JamPlay has lessons for guitarists of all different levels in their program, as well as offering a lot of different choices for musicians to pick from, such as what genres to learn, who you want your instructor to be, and much more!

Conclusion

All in all, I personally think that the Gibson Learn and Master Guitar is a quality learning system with lessons that really put a lot of focus into reading music and music theory. I believe that a lot of the learning systems that are out in today’s market don’t focus enough on music theory or reading music, which sets u- a lot of guitarists for failure in the future.

If you’re a beginner or intermediate guitarist, or even an advanced player who doesn’t know how to read music, I think that this course would do you extremely beneficial. If you are an experienced guitar player who can read music, I would suggest that you look into a different lesson program.

The biggest complaint that I have about the Gibson Learn and Master Guitar is that I wish there were more features on the guitar. When I used this program, I looked through it with the eyes of a beginner and I wished that there had been a separate chord library and a separate
scale library.

It would have been very helpful to have a chart to go back to that had all of the scales and chords listed on it.

That’s it for this review of the Gibson Learn and Master Guitar. I hope you’ve enjoyed
today’s article!

Search Is Jamorama Worth Your Time and Effort?

Is Jamorama Worth Your Time and Effort?

I like to be honest in reviews, so let me say straight off that I had never heard of Jamorama before I needed to review it. I have to say, approaching it, I was a mixed mindset of intrigued and skeptical.

This predominantly came from the way it labels itself as a social network for guitarists. I don’t know why that would even be a thing. I’m a guitarist and I use the usual social networks, and never felt the need for one just for my playing.

Reading more, I saw that it was designed to help guitarist learn, and set points in their progress that could be regarded as achievements. I thought that was interesting, and thought that would be a more valuable attribute than a social network.

Core features and specs

The main thing that Jamorama focuses on is community, and learning as others learn.  I guess I can see how some new guitarists might like that. When I was learning to play it was all about dial-up and videos were barely feasible!

Jamorama themselves identify their key benefits to guitarists as follows:

  • Profile achievements
  • Messages for you to chat privately with other users
  • Course introduction video to set you in the right mindset for what you’re about to do
  • Discussion forums so you can chat openly with other users
  • Activity posts so you can share what you’re up to
  • A list of other learners who are online
Jamorama has a free version and a paid version. The paid version is a one-off fee of $99.95, and includes additional lessons, backing tracks and supplementary learning materials. The free version seems to be only for acoustic guitar, while the paid version includes more electric-orientated stuff, such as speed picking and blues classes.

There are also a few video lessons for specific songs.

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This will work well for…

Just considering the basic, free version, it’s definitely aimed at beginners, and despite my own misgivings, I can see how a lot of newbie guitarists would benefit from what’s on offer here.

If somebody is set on learning on guitar, but live somewhere without a teacher, or a good teacher, or if it’s too far or too difficult to travel, or for any other reason that the can’t take an actual class, the free version of Jamorama will easily get them up and running.

The fact that it’s free could even be an alternative to paying for lessons. Considering what’s on offer in that context, a quick look through Craigslist shows that guitar lessons are really expensive. Granted, I’m in New York where everything is expensive – I feel like I should pay $20 just for waking up in the morning.

Obviously, the cost of a lesson every week varies wildly depending on location, quality of tuition, length of class, number of other students, but just shy of $100 for a one off fee is going to be pretty hard to beat.

Pricing options

As mentioned, Jamorama has two options: a free one, for which you’ll never have to pay anything, and a paid version with a one-off fee of $99.95.

I feel like this is quite a jump, especially for kids without much money. I can’t help but feel like a freemium model, with gradual increases to more content, or at least a pay monthly option would be more appropriate. In saying that, I’d question the life cycle of the additional features available for the paid version. I’m not convinced that it would keep a budding guitarist busy for even a year.

Features

 

jamorama-guitar

The main feature of Jamorama is the lessons they have available. They start with pretty basic stuff like chords, and some basic guitar maintenance.

Each course is split into a number of parts, labelled as weeks, with the idea that you should complete one section per week to complete that course. For example, the first course is called Beginner Guitar Method – Stage 1. It provides materials for you to take over five weeks. The course materials are a combination of instructional videos, and PDFs for you to download or print.

It includes a blog section, but this doesn’t require membership. Blog posts are categorized into lessons, gear, artists and news. Firstly, this somewhat devalues the blog for paid members, and secondly, it hasn’t been updated since 2016.

The song lessons available are limited, but have a simple version and advanced version: all acoustic interpretations, aimed at getting beginners playing popular songs that they might be familiar with, but equally, stuff that’s ready available on YouTube anyway.  It also has a forum section for you to say hi and chat with other learners.

Usability

Jamarama is trying to do a lot of little things. It’s certainly an ambitious approach, and I really can’t fault the navigability of its interface. Everything is easy to find – if you’ve used the internet, you can use this.

The instructional videos are helpful, and the advice they provide is absolutely solid. I mean, solid as in guitar playing is so old, with so many different types of player, there are a million opinions on how things should be done, so nobody is ever really right, but the advice provided on Jamorama is definitely a good base point.

The one thing that may hinder the usability is the limited content that I mentioned earlier. Like, it surely won’t take much longer than a year to complete the courses they have listed in the free and aid versions? I’m not sure that kind of limited life cycle makes it a sustainable option.

I mean, what do you do when you’ve spent your $100 and you finish all the courses? Chat with others on the forum? There are plenty of places you can do that for free.

Conclusion

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I understand the intention behind Jamorama, I really do.  Unfortunately, I’m far from convinced that it’s necessary, especially when you part with $100 for it.

It ties together video lessons and written instructions, a forum, a blog, and all kind of resources. But these are all things that are available elsewhere. On separate sites, sure, but mostly dedicated to what they do, meaning you get players of all levels, from all kinds of experiences.

With Jamorama, because it’s aimed at beginners, I feel like the pool of knowledge is going to be limited, and given the inexperience of the target audience, more likely to be have incorrect information.

Further, it’s not encouraging that the blog hasn’t been updated since last year, and even then, updates seemed sporadic at best.

I do like the gamification of it, where you can achieve certain things. But, as you decide yourself when you’ve played something well enough to move on, does that even count? It’s like ticking a box to say you’re older than you really are when you’re going onto some websites – there’s nobody that can check!

In saying that, I see how it might benefit somebody who does not have access to lessons with an actual guitar teacher, and I would recommend them to at least try it, and see how they get on. But this website is not going to create the next Van Halen.

I feel like listening to great guitarists, aspiring to sound like them, practicing until you do, then making it your own, is a decades old route to guitar mastery that isn’t going to be replaced by any website anytime soon.

Best Guitar Tuner Apps for Apple IOS Systems 

Best Guitar Tuner Apps for iPhones That You’ll Love

If you are a guitarist who is working with a tight budget, you’re probably not able to afford a high-quality professional tuner that’s going to last you years and years.

That’s totally okay, too! Since smartphones have such a heavy influence in our lives, some companies have decided to take their market to the whole new level. Some companies have decided to introduce guitar tuners to smartphones, making a professional quality guitar tuner available at the touch of a few buttons (and free to download)!

Guitar Tuna 

 

Guitar Tuna claims to be the number one tuning app in the world and we can’t blame them for claiming that title. Not only does Guitar Tuna have a beautiful setup, but it also functions very well. The actual interface of Guitar Tuna is very visually accurate, but what we should be really talking about is how accurate this tuner is.

If you’re a beginner who is looking to develop your aural training, Guitar Tuna also has a training mode to help you develop that skill. There are some additional purchases that you can make inside the app, but to download Guitar Tuna, you won’t need to spend a single penny. Also, there are additional tuners for bass guitar, mandolin, banjo, and twelve string guitar on Guitar Tuna.

Clear Tune

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If you’re an experienced guitarist who is looking for a chromatic tuner, you’ve come to the right place. Clear Tune is a chromatic tuner that comes with a pitch pipe that’s been built in. Also, Clear Tune has a meter that helps you to fine tune you or your instrument to find the perfect pitch or tune.

There are several features that are built in with Clear Tuner and those features are: Adjustable calibration, solfege notations, transposition (which is really helpful if you’re playing in a band that has instruments that play in a different key), and custom temperaments.

Not to mention, you can any instrument that has the ability to sustain a note with Clear Tune- any woodwinds, piano, any brass, tablas, bowed strings, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, bass, and even vocals. Clear Tune was designed with the wants and needs of professional musicians in mind, but this app is simple enough to be used by beginner musicians.

Pano Tuner

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Pano Tuner is one of the most commonly used tuners on both Android and Apple devices. This easy to use app provides users with consistent tuning.

Users also talk about how much they like how Pano Tuner allows players to customize their settings; Pano Tuner allows players to dial in on creating precise settings for both live performances, close jam sessions with your guitar friends, and practice sessions with just yourself.

Despite all of the positive reviews that people have left the Pano Tuner, it does come with its fair share of complaints. The biggest complaint that people had about this app is that the advertisements got annoying, but Pano Tuner allows you to upgrade to the pro version for a $1.99 to not only receive additional tones, but to use the app ad free.

Tune O Rama

tuneorama-app

 

Tune O Rama doesn’t have a lot of extra features installed in it, but for what it lacks in features, it makes up in accuracy. For $2.99 you can purchase yourself an incredibly accurate tuner for very little money. This tuner has been specifically designed for bass and guitar.

While Tune O Rama does have a built-in chromatic tuner, the automatic tuner is what is impressive about this app. The automatic tuner users a four tier detection algorithm that really helps to provide users with an increased sensitivity, as well as accuracy.

Gibson Learn and Master Guitar with Studio Share

Gibson-Learn-Master-w-StudioShare

Gibson partnered with Legacy Learning Systems to provide beginning guitar players with the only guitar tuner that they will ever need. This essential guitar tuner comes with a chord library, a guitar tuner, and a metronome, as well as a handful of full-length guitar lessons that are completely free.

These lessons are from Gibson’s Famous Learn and Master Guitar course; the best part of this app, that you can get all of this, for free!

IStroboSoft

IStroboSoft is one of the most accurate guitar tuners in the App Store and that is because of the strobe displays that are known for their incredibly accurate tuning.

If you’re looking to fine tune your tuning even further, you can purchase an adaptor cable from Peterson Tuners to provide yourself with a direct line in access, that also provides with you a mini capsule microphone that helps to greatly increase the accuracy of

Best Tuner Applications for Android Devices

Back when smartphones were first released to the market, musicians used the microphone on their smartphone to tune their guitars. This type of tuning was great to use if you were in a pinch and needed to tune quickly, but it didn’t give you spot on results.

Since technology has improved, the guitar tuner apps on smartphones are much better than they used to be. Today, I’ve created a list of the best tuner apps for Android devices for string instruments.

Chromatic Guitar Tuner

I enjoy using this tuner because unlike other tuners that we’ll talk about here, this tuner has a digital tuning fork; I find that these tuning forks really allow you to get your tuning accurate, within an exact cent.

Chromatic Guitar Tuner is a simple tuner that has a really attractive interface, too. The biggest complaint that many people have with this guitar tuner is that it has live ads ever so often.

Cifra Club Tuner

Out of all of the tuners that we have listed, the Cifra Club Tuner is the simplest tuner on our whole list. It’s completely free and does a great job of tuning quickly. The Cifra Club Tuner is compatible with ukulele, bass, banjo, acoustic, and electric guitars.

This is a quick and simple chromatic tuner that’s free in the app store; if you’re looking for a tuner that’s a bit more complex, you can pay for additional features.

Da Tuner

If you’re looking for a simple tuner, download the free version of Da Tuner. However, just pay $2.93 and you’ll unlock a tuner that will really open up your world. When your instrument is properly in tune, the whole screen will light up green, which makes it a lot easier to see how well you’re in tune, rather than looking at a dial or a fork.

Also, if you’re really not that into technology, this tuning app still works on older Android devices.

Pro Guitar Tuner

Some guitarists aren’t looking for a tuner app that has a whole bunch of bells and whistles. The Pro Guitar Tuner was created with pro guitar players in mind; the version that you download from the Google Play store is free. Personally, I was happy with the free version.

The upgraded, pro version was pretty expensive, so if you’re just looking for a tuner that doesn’t have a whole lot of extras in it, I would just tell you to stick with the free version! Also, this app allows you to tune your instrument as it supports many stringed instruments, but it also allows you to pitch check your guitar.

Pano Tuner

Pano Tuner is another tuner that I used all throughout high school, but I used this for my wind instruments. Whenever I was in a pinch and needed to tune my guitar in a couple of seconds, I would use Pano Tuner.

This tuner is an extremely simple tuning application that has a dial style tuner. I enjoyed used this app because it allows you to adjust the sensitivity of your microphone, supports non-standard tuning, and allows you to adjust the concert frequency. You can use this for any string or wind instrument, not to mention that it’s completely free.

G Strings Tuner

This is one of the older guitar tuners that’s still on the market today. You can control the theme of this tuner, as well as the microphone sensitivity. This is another simple guitar tuner that doesn’t have a whole lot of bells and whistles, but still has the most important features that a musician needs.

Smart Chords and Tools

If you’re looking for a tuner app that’s a bit more complex compared to other tuners on the Google Play Store, Smart Chords and Tools is an app that works with most stringed instruments, along with a few other bonuses too. Smart Chords and Tools is an app that is completely free to download but does have the ability to purchase extra items within the apps.

In addition to tuning your struggled instrument, this app also has two hundred pre-defined tunings, over two hundred and twenty chords all stacked away in a chord library, and different level settings for those with different experience levels.

There’s a lot of information that’s stashed away in this app that would make any guitar players life easier, but Smart Chords and Tools is an excellent app for anybody to use who are looking for a tuner.

Guitar Tuna        

All throughout high school, this was the application that I used to tune my guitar. Originally, I only downloaded this app because it was free, but after downloading it, I realized it was much more than just a guitar tuner. After using the app for a little while, I discovered that it was developed by Yousician, which I thought was very interesting.

Guitar Tuna comes with a tuner that’s worth of professional quality, a very simple interface, a built-in metronome, and several other features that made learning guitar much easier.

Pitch Lab Guitar Tuner

Technically, this Pitch Lab Guitar Tuner is completely free to download from the app store; you will receive the free version of this app that does have some really nice qualities to it, but I personally liked the upgraded version much better.

For $2.99, you can upgrade Pitch Lab Guitar Tuner to the premium version, which will give you access to a stage tuner, a chord matrix, a pitch spectrogram, a polyphonic tuner, and many other options.

There are a lot of special features locked away in the upgraded version, o this app makes something great for any musician who is looking for something a bit special. As for the interface of this app, the entire thing is a dial style tuning that offers several virtualization options.

Conclusion

It may take some time for you to find the best app for your needs, but there are plenty of free options on the Android market that you can choose from. It can become a bit frustrating trying to find the best guitar tuners to use on your smartphone, but I hope this list of the best guitar tuners for Android devices has helped you!

The Ultimate Justin Guitar Lessons Review: For Those Who Want to Keep Learning

If you’re a beginning guitarist who is looking for inexpensive guitar lessons, you should take your time and check out Justin Guitar review. Justin Guitar offers completely free online guitar lessons that have a decent quality to them and a suitable selection of courses to choose from.

Justin Guitar allows users to choose from three levels of lessons:

  • Beginners Guitar Course
  • Intermediate Method
  • Style Modules, which includes blue rhythms, blues lead, fingerstyle folk, and a small selection of metal and rock

Justin’s beginner’s course is completely free to use; it’s so free to use that you don’t even need to give his site your credit card information. If you’re just starting out on guitar or not exactly sure you even want to start playing guitar, take some time to give Justin Guitar a look at.

Beginner’s Course

The beginner’s course is split into ten different stages and in these stages, players will learn:

  • Common FAQs that beginners have with answers
  • What proper technique is
  • A selection of open chords
  • Rhythm training
  • How to properly apply your picking technique
  • A little bit of music theory
  • Power chords
  • Palm muting
  • Some finger style training
  • Minor pentatonic scale
  • Training techniques
  • Practice schedules
  • Practice exercises

Each level that you enter in has a different song that you will learn. You do not have to pay for anything for the beginner course, but Justin Guitar strongly encourages donations. However, if you can’t afford the price tag that comes with other online guitar lessons, Justin Guitar is a great place to start with.

The beginner’s course is perfect for anyone who has never touched a guitar before or for anyone who is looking for some basic knowledge about how to play the guitar or improve their technique.

If you’re a guitarist that’s self-taught, you may also want to go through these lessons, just to see if there’s anything that you may have missed when you were teaching yourself. It doesn’t hurt to look!

Intermediate Course

In Justin’s Guitar course, the intermediate method is broken down into five foundations; these are lessons that build up a player’s foundation that is needed to be able to confidently play, no matter what their style is. This course helps to encourage and build proper technique for comfortable and confident playing.

The lessons that are taught in the intermediate course are:

  • Different barre chords
  • Major scale
  • Keys
  • Learning the fretboard
  • Advanced techniques
  • How to bend strings
  • Improving fingerstyle technique
  • Advanced rhythm training
  • Dynamics
  • A song to learn that incorporates all of these lessons

The intermediate course is also free but comes with some DVDs that you can purchase for some extra education. You do learn a lot in this free course, but if you really want to go above and beyond in your understanding of the guitar, the DVDs really help.

This course is great to enter in if you are someone who has already completed the beginner’s course or who has had some basic training on the guitar in a properly structured manner; if you have ever completed any online training or in-person guitar lessons.

If you are a self-taught musician,I would still suggest that you start off with the beginner’s course, just to make sure that you have a solid understanding of all of the topics covered in that course.

The courses that Justin’s Guitar offers through their style modules offers a mix of both free and paid courses.

  • Master the Major Scale is only available through a paid DVD
  • Solo Blues is only available through a paid DVD
  • Blues Rhythm Guitar offers free online course and a paid DVD
  • Blues Lead offers a free online course and a paid DVD option Folk Fingerstyle offers a free online course and a paid DVD

Teaching Quality

I am more of an independent physical learner and I found that the teaching style that Justin employs is not only easy to understand, but his directions are very clear and concise. I also enjoyed how all of the videos that I used from Justin’s site all had subtitles, which really came in handy because there were certain times where his accent was very clear.

All of the lessons also have subtitles for each of these languages:

  • Spanish
  • Croatian
  • Finnish
  • French
  • Romanian

I also found the lessons to be perfectly paced; Justin didn’t go through each lesson at a speedy pace. Instead, he really took his time to explain everything, which was very nice to see in the beginner’s section.

Conclusion

Overall, I was very impressed with the quality of the videos and learning experience that Justin’s Guitar lessons provided users with. It was really nice to see high-quality beginners videos for free, which is really hard to find.

These lessons were also organized very well; some online lessons will teach beginners songs on sheet music before they even teach their guitarists how to read music.

I did not find one single lesson that was lacking in knowledge; each lesson was very thorough and there weren’t many important things that Justin left out in the beginner’s section. My biggest complaint is the style modules, as I’m not exactly sure how learning how to play major scales is a module, but that organization is up to Justin.

I understand that the style modules are still being worked on, but the beginner and intermediate lessons that are free are really impressive and worth the experience. I also didn’t enjoy the heavy push to purchase beginner’s products, like DVDs and books.

There were DVDs that cost around $50 and any excited beginning guitarist may be tricked into purchasing that DVD when they don’t even really need it.

If you are a guitarist who is looking to improve technique, can’t afford guitar lessons, or want to expand on your guitar knowledge, Justin’s Guitar lessons are something that I would highly recommend that you check out. Even if you can afford to pay for lessons, I would also suggest that you check out these lessons and really learn those basics.

Top Five Best Guitar Capos on the Market Today

Top Five Best Guitar Capos on the Market Today

Some people think that using a capo to play the guitar is cheating. If you are someone who can play the guitar without a capo, you deserve a countless amount of high fives.

Playing the guitar without a capo is incredibly difficult and requires a crazy amount of practice in order to be able to play in difficult keys.

However, I find that instead of wasting all of that time practicing those difficult keys, you can just use a capo! Using a capo adds a whole new range to your playing, without having to add any extra practice time into your day.

Not to mention, using a capo is a whole lot of fun! With added enjoyment comes a larger desire to practice, which means you’re going to become a better guitar player.

But, before we even get into talking about the best capos on the market today, we need to talk about what a capo actually does and the different types of capos that you can purchase.

Quick Guide to Guitar Capos

Before you can fully understand the different aspects that different types of capos can bring to your technique, we need to have a talk about what the capo does on the guitar and how to properly use the capo. Guitar capos are used by guitarists all around the world, as the capo allows the guitarist to change the key of the guitar.

If you are a singer and use your guitar to introduce the key of the song to your ear, capos are incredibly useful; by using a capo, guitarists don’t have to tune their guitar every time they change songs and also don’t have to learn complex chords that are on the lower part of
the neck.

How to Use Your Capo

Capos also allow a guitarist to produce different tones on the guitar without having to learn any difficult chord structures; matter of fact, with the help of a capo, you can use the same basic chord shapes that most guitarists use when they first learn how to start playing.

Capos don’t come with instruction manuals, so when you first get yourself a guitar capo, you’re going to need to know how to properly use your capo. If you are a guitarist who uses sheet music or tabs, you may notice at the beginning of certain pieces, it tells you to barre or capo on a particular fret.

Take your capo, slide it over the desired fret, and clamp your capo down over the fret.

Depending upon the size of the capo that you purchase, your capo should hold down all six (or twelve) strings on your guitar. The capo will act the same exact way that your index finger does when you use your finger to barre chords.

If you have never used a capo before, I would suggest that when you first use it to start playing, you use it on your first, second, and third fret, just to give yourself an idea of how your guitar sounds with the capo. Make sure that you’re cognitive of the capo changing the tone, key, and notes when you’re playing.

When applying your capo to your guitar, make sure that to tighten the capo close behind the fret you have it clamped on. By applying your capo in the middle of the fret, you will can tension the be unevenly disturbed across the neck of your guitar.

By applying uneven tension across the neck, you may receive a buzzing sound or a muted sound when you are trying to play. In order to prevent this from happening to you, apply your capo as close to the edge of the fret as you possibly can.

Once you have enough of a basic understanding on how to properly introduce yourself to a capo, it’s time you actually use it! Before you actually apply your capo to your guitar, make sure that your guitar is tuned.

Even if you want to change the key of your guitar, you still need to tune it; without tuning your guitar, no matter where you place your capo, your guitar is going to sound bad. The standard tuning for a guitar is E, A, D, G, B, E. If you aren’t experienced enough yet to be able to aurally tune your guitar (tune your guitar by ear) purchase an electric tuner.

Before you start to heavily use a capo, make sure that you know how to play the fundamental chord shapes. Basic open chords like C, F Major, e minor, and A should require little thought to you; make sure that you understand how to play these chords before moving on to chords that are more difficult, such as b minor, D7, C# Sustained 4.

If you are already proficient at playing open chord progressions, having a capo won’t cause you much trouble. In fact, having a capo will make you more versatile on guitar. If you’re a beginning guitarist or an intermediate player, I would suggest that you purchase a chord map at your local music store or print one off online.

A chord map is great to have around if you’re struggling to remember how to play a chord or if you’re looking for alternative ways to play the chord.

When beginning guitarists first learn about the capo, it’s common for them to ask if the capo can hurt their guitar. Don’t worry for one second! The companies that manufacture capos have the same worry in mind, so they ensure that their capos are well padded, which minimizes the risk to your guitar.

However, if you leave a capo on your guitar while your guitar is being stored, you’re going to put your guitar out of tune and you also risk damaging your guitar over a period of time.

How do I play with a capo on my guitar?

Before you start jamming out, you want to make sure that when you put your capo on your guitar, it’s tight. If you put the capo on the fret too loose, your strings are going to produce a buzzing noise. Also, if you put it on too loosely, the capo could slip off the fret when you are in the middle of a song, which is something that you definitely don’t want.

When I put on a capo, I make sure that the capo is parallel with my fret, to ensure that it doesn’t bend the strings on my guitar. If you happen to place the capo on uneven, you risk the chance of bending your strings, which will make your guitar sound out of tune.

I also make sure that I put it right behind a fret, which helps to keep the capo sturdy on
my guitar.

Once I got the hang of properly applying the capo to my guitar, it took me a lot longer to truly understand how to play guitar with the capo. For me, it was difficult to re-think
chord progressions.

Once you have a capo on, you need to remember to subtract half of a step from each chord. This sounds super confusing, so I’m going to explain it with an example.

If you have your capo on the first fret, Ab is going to now become a G. While a G chord is much easier to play finger wise, you’re still going to have to learn how to re-think the chord progression while you are playing. For about a year, I carried around with me and used a
cheat sheet.

I would always try my best to think of the answer myself and double check with the cheat sheet; doing this really helped me to allow the re-thinking of the chord progression to become second nature to me.

Below, I have the same chord progression chart that I used to help me learn!

How should I go about purchasing a capo?

When first going shopping for a capo, you’re going to want to determine how you want to play your guitar and what type of capo you want. If you plan on using a capo at home while you practice, consider purchasing a screw capo, because it’s the most durable capo and it’s incredibly precise.

However, if you plan on using a capo during live performances, you’re going to want to purchase a trigger capo; this is because trigger capo can be adjusted quickly.

There is no set price for capos; if you plan on shopping online for your capo, search around a little bit to determine a price that you feel comfortable with. If you think you’re going to want to purchase your capo in store, make sure you ask to try out the different capo options they have (remember to bring your guitar to test the capos out on).

If you are a new guitarist or you have never used a capo before, I would personally suggest that you purchase a cheap capo; that way, if you don’t like using a capo, you don’t end up wasting a lot of money. You can find capos as cheap as $4!

What different types of capos can I purchase?

If you have never purchased a capo before, you have yet to learn the lesson between good capos and bad capos. Yes, whether you believe it or not, there is a difference! Bad capos tend to slide off frets, cause buzzing because of their poor construction, and end up taking your attention away from playing.

So, today we’re going to cover different types of capos and the capos that I really suggest
you purchase.

Trigger capos

Trigger capos are the most popular capos out of all of the designs that are on today’s market.

Trigger capos use a spring loaded clamp in order to hold their tension. Trigger capos are popular because the allow players to quickly and easily adjust and reposition the capo only using one hand.

You apply a trigger capo by squeezing the handles and releasing the handles on the desired fret. Trigger capos use resistance to hold down guitar strings, which means that you don’t need to adjust any straps or loosen any screws in order to use the capo.

Trigger capos are commonly used in live performances and this is because it’s super easy to move it up and down the neck of the guitar.

If you happen to purchase a capo that’s poor quality, you will find that the capo is too loose, which results in a buzzing sound when the guitar is played. On the other hand, if the capo is too tight, unnecessary tension will be put onto the guitar neck and you’re going to have a really hard time tuning your guitar.

The only downfall with trigger capos is that you can’t adjust the tension of the capo, so you really have to make sure you’re purchasing a capo that’s high quality.

However, all of these problems are potential problems. It’s not guaranteed that you’re going to run into them. Trigger capos are the cheapest and easier capos to use, out of all of the competition on the market. This is why they are the most popular capo on the market and why they are perfect for beginning capo users.

Best trigger capo

My favorite trigger capo is the Kyser KG6B 6 String capo; it’s a simple trigger capo that doesn’t have a whole bunch of bells and whistles. I love all of the different color options and themes that the Kyser KG6B offers. My only complaint that because I have smaller, weaker hands, I have a hard time moving this capo around.

Trigger capos are known to give your instrument a harsh, thin sound and bending strings out of tune. That’s a common problem with trigger capos and the Kyser KG6B is no different.

However, I do have to say that for a trigger capo, it’s super durable and consistent. If you are someone who doesn’t need to constantly switch keys all the time, I would suggest the Kyser KG6B 6 String capo for you.

Screw capos

If you have a guitar that has a thin neck or a guitar that has high action, I personally have found it to be a lot more efficient to use a screw capo. This is because you can fine tune the tension that the capo exerts onto your guitar, making it to be personalized and more efficient.

The only complaint that I have about a screw capo is that they take longer to adjust compared to any other capo. Screw capos allow you to put the perfect level of tension on a guitar regardless of the guitar’s neck size, string action, or fret position.

While the screw capo is personable to each guitar, this design does come with its fair amount of disadvantages as well. Repositioning the capo takes a lot of time, especially compared to the trigger capo; every time you go to move the screw capo, you have to loosen the tension and then tighten it in order for it to stay at its new position.

Using a screw capo on stage isn’t highly recommended and this is because the screw capo takes time to re-adjust and if you’re in a rush and don’t apply it correctly, you’re setting yourself up for poor tension levels.

Best screw capo

The best screw-on capo that I have ever used is the Planet Waves NS Classical Capo. There are a lot of screw capos that are available on the market today that are outrageously expensive and for no good reason. I personally enjoy the Planet Waves NS Classical Capo because it’s the perfect choice to make if you have a classical guitar.

As someone who often plays classical guitar, I know that it’s hard to find a capo that will fit your wider neck. This capo is inexpensive and it’s been crafted from aircraft-grade aluminum, meaning that the capo is built to withstand some abuse.

Toggle capos

The toggle capo is the simplest capo design out of all of the different capos on the market; the toggle capo applies tension to the strings with an adjustable strap. There are several increments that can be tightened along multiple notches on the back of the capo.

I know several of my friends who like the toggle capo because it’s small and lightweight. However, while I think that’s an okay benefit, it really doesn’t make up for the fact of how problematic the design is.

When you secure the capo over the neck of the guitar, the strap tends to lie in between two notches; either one notch happens to be too loose and the other notch is too tight. Even if it’s a perfect fit when you first purchase it (which it was when I first purchased a toggle capo), it stretches over time.

I also have found that if you accidentally stretch the toggle capo too much, it breaks super easy. I would say that this capo is not my favorite.

Best toggle capo

I am personally not the biggest fan of toggle capos. However, I do feel like they are a decent capo to try out if you are a beginner and you’re looking to try out the different types of capos that are available on the market. The Dunlop 14C Curved Professional Toggle Capo is less than $10 and is built to withstand some abuse.

I think that the price for this capo is cheap, which means that it’s not going to cost you an arm and a leg to replace in case yours breaks. I love using the toggle capos on ukuleles, because it’s so easy to move around and doesn’t get in my way when I’m playing ukulele.

Partial capos

Partial capos are rare to find in a guitarist’s gig bag, no matter what their level of playing is. Partial capos are occasionally used, but when they are used, it’s such a unique experience that people usually get hooked. I love using a partial capo, because the partial capo allows you to create sounds that are normally possible to create on a standard guitar.

The only thing that I have to say about partial capos is that I would only suggest advanced players get into using them. While you don’t have to be an advanced player to use the partial capo, being an advanced player allows you to truly unlock the full capability the partial
capo has.

Shubb capos

Back in 1980, the Shubb capo was born. The design of the Shubb capo was created in order to give the user the speed of trigger capo, along with the precision of a screw capo. The only complaint that I have about the Shubb capo is that they are more expensive compared to
other capos.

However, they do have capos that have been specifically created for different instruments and different playing styles, which I think it unique.

Best Shubb capos

The Shubb C1 allows the user to apply a unique tension on the fret of the guitar, while also providing users with a quick release lever. If you are someone who has a curved fretboard, the Shubb C4 is a great capo for you to purchase.

My only complaint about the C1 and C4 Shubb capos is that because of the adjustable tension, you can’t clamp the capo onto the headstock of your guitar. You’ll have to keep it in your pocket or keep it in your gig back. However, I love the slim profile of the Shubb capos!

G7th capos

The G7th capo is still considered a brand new capo in the guitar world, even though it was built in 2004. I have a love-hate relationship with the G7th capos; I like them because they’re easy to move around because all you have to do is flip the lever to move it.

I also like the G7th capo because it’s very gentle on my guitar because the inside of the capo is lined with rubber and the outside of the capo doesn’t have any sharp metal edges. This capo is also to easy to customize the tension levels on the guitar, as all you need to do is squeeze the capo over the neck and it automatically locks into place.

A lot of people say that they feel like the G7th capos are unobtrusive when it comes to playing. However, I do feel like they get into the way just a bit when I play. I also feel like it weighs down the neck of my guitar, because the capo is a lot heavier than other capos that I’ve used.

Bet G7th capo

Out of all of the different G7th capos that I’ve ever tried, the G7th Performance 2 Capo is my favorite capo to use. As someone who plays acoustic guitar and electric guitar, I hated having to purchase two different capos for my guitars. I never could find a capo that fit both of
my guitars.

One day, I stumbled upon the G7th Performance 2 Capo and I found that it fit both my acoustic guitar and electric guitar! I also like that it’s not obstructive on either instrument, because of the small and sleek design.

Are there capos available for electric guitars?

It’s not very common to see capos used on electric guitars. This is because playing on an electric guitar is more about playing singular notes rather than whole chords; this means you aren’t going to need any fancy pieces in order to play electric guitar.

Also, the strings on electric guitars are much easier to depress (play barre chords) with rather than the strings on acoustic guitars. However, if you have decided that you’re going to be playing more rhythmically rather than singular notes on the electric guitar, you can use any standard capo that’s made for an acoustic guitar on an electric guitar.

Conclusion

There are a few more things that we should talk about before we wrap up this article. When playing in a group setting, whether be in a band or with other guitarists, determine what key you are playing in. You’re going to want to play in the same key as other people because you’re going to want your music to sound cohesive to the group.

For each key, there are seven different chords. The position that you place your capo in will change the chords that you are playing; this means that every time you change the position of the capo, you are changing the key that you are playing in. The progression of chords within a scale go as follows:

  • – Major
  • – Minor
  • – Minor
  • – Major
  • – Major
  • – Diminished

Using this pattern will allow you to figure out the chords that are in the key of C, C Major, c minor, d minor, e minor, F Major, G Major, A diminished.

There is some basic music theory that you should know when using a capo. For example, moving your capo one ONE fret will move your chord up a half step; moving your capo up on the neck of the guitar TWO frets, you will move your guitar up one full step.

While getting used to using a capo on your guitar, you should also being to learn how to transpose your music while using a capo. You can get a chart online and these charts will tell you exactly what chord you are playing based upon where your capo is positioned.

You can also use a capo to brighten the tone of your guitar. Did you know that if you move a capo further down on the neck of your guitar, it will brighten the tone of your guitar? By moving the capo further down the neck, you brighten the tone of your guitar, making it easier to create upbeat and happy music; doing this can also help you to match your vocal registry.

That’s a wrap for the top five best guitar capos on the market today. I hope you’ve enjoyed this article!

Top Five Best Guitar Stands on the Market Today

Top Five Best Guitar Stands on the Market Today

If you’re a beginning guitarist, you’ve probably made this mistake of thinking that all guitar stands are the same. By assuming this, you probably just ended up purchasing the very first guitar stand that you see. Or maybe you tend to be a cheapskate and you just end up purchasing the cheapest one you can find. I know when I was a beginner, that was the exact same thing that I did.

As I became a more experienced musician, I began to realize that one of the best investments that I could make was in my guitar stand. The biggest and most frustrating problem behind shopping for a guitar stand is that you can’t always know which stands are the best stands and which ones tend to be the worst.

A Little About Guitar Stands

Before we get into talking about the best guitar stands on the market, we need to talk about the most popular types of guitar stands on the market. Here we go!

Tubular Stands
Wall Hanging Stands
A Frame Stands
Multi-Guitar Stands
Guitar Racks
Walk-Up Stands
Tripod Stands

These are also called tripod stands and these are the most popular design on the market! While the tubular stands are the most popular stands on the market, they arguably are also the most hated stands too.

These stands are cheap and work with a large variety of shapes and sizes. If you’ve ever purchased a guitar starter kit, this is the guitar stand you’ve probably received in your kit. Tripod stands have a neck cradle, which gives the guitar a good amount of stability.

Tubular Stands

Tubular stands are accident prone; they’re easily tipped over, difficult to assemble and disassemble, are unstable, and can be awkward to travel with. If you’re not certain if you’re going to like your stand, I would suggest that you try one out before purchasing it officially.

Wall Hanging Stands

Wall hanging stands are great to use if you’re limited to a small space to store your guitar or your guitars. Since they are hung on the wall, you don’t have to worry about using up any floor space, meaning your room will be less cluttered feeling!

Having it hooked on the wall also means that you don’t have to worry about any clumsy accidents, children, or pets running into your guitar and damaging it.

You should know that even though wall hanging stands are great to have to reduce the risk of damage from your pets or children, there is still a fair chance that you can receive damage on your guitar from the wall hanging stand.

There is a higher risk for your guitar to crack and warp throughout the seasons because the guitar is so close to the wall. Being this close to the wall increases the humidity, as well as temperature, variations due to changes in the weather and in the seasons.

Also, setting up a wall hanging stand can be rather tricky. If you don’t set up the stand right, you increase the risk of damaging your guitar. Unsuitable mounting can cause your guitar to fall off of the wall.

A-Frame Stands

This the cheapest guitar stands, with the simplest design out of all of the stands available. While these stands may seem to be unstable, but their looks are deceiving. When the A-Frame stands are completely collapsed, they are actually small enough that you can store them in your travel bag for your guitar.

While these stands may look unstable, they’re more stable than you actual believe, especially if you’re looking for a stand that allows you to store your guitar in a small space. These are great stands to use if you’re someone who travels around a lot and needs to carry a guitar stand with you, but doesn’t want a stand taking up too much room in your luggage.

However, if you’re super protective over your guitar, I would suggest that you think twice about this stand; if you bump the stand accidentally, you should expect your guitar to fall over.

If you’re someone who has children or pets at home or you’re just a clumsy person, don’t purchase this stand. On the other hand, if you’re going to leave this guitar on the stand in a private place that doesn’t have a lot of activity going around in it, I would suggest you look into this stand.

If you’re a musician that owns more than one guitar, you’re probably searching for a stand that’s more practical. Having a stand that allows you to hold multiple guitars at once can save you a whole lot of floor space; this is especially important if you live in a small space.

It can be awkward to grab the guitars off of the rack, especially if you have the stand placed into a corner of the room.

Guitar Racks

On the other hand, if you’re still looking to purchase a guitar stand that holds multiple guitars at once, but have just a little bit more floor space to work with, you may want to consider checking out a guitar rack. Guitar racks are extremely portable and are easy to set up and store away.

Compared to multi-guitar stands, guitar racks are more efficient, because they can hold up to ten guitars (depending on what model you get). These racks are great to use for long term storage for your guitars, traveling with a band that has a lot of extra equipment, or you’re just looking to tidy up your living space.

However, if you aren’t super careful about how to place the guitars on the rack, it’s a common problem that the guitars ding against each other. Just as a word of caution, make sure you’re very careful putting your guitars back on the rack, as if you aren’t careful, you can do some serious damage to one of your prized guitars.

This stand is meant to be used while you are standing and not for actual storage. Crazy, right? These stands are popular among traveling musicians; if a musician wants to switch instruments mid-song, a walk-up stands allows him to do so.

Now, let’s get into talking about guitar stand models!

Hercules GS414B Guitar Stand

Hercules GS414 Guitar Stand is one the most popular stands on the market; it has a $31.00 street value and comes with an option to adjust the height on the stand.

Another great feature that comes with the GS414B Guitar Stand is the auto grip system that ensures that any instrument (up to 33 pounds in weight) will be secure on the stand. Check out the latest discounts and prices here!

Fender Multi Folding 5 Guitar Stand

If you’re a musician who is constantly on the go and needs a stand that will keep your instruments nice and secure, the Fender Multi Folding 5 Guitar Stand is totally collapsible, making it perfect for transportation.

Fender really made sure to create a stand that can withstand some abuse, making it a great piece to have along with you while traveling in a band. This stand has a street value of $60 and comes with padded foam resting points to protect your instruments while they are in temporary storage. Check out the latest discounts and prices here.

On Stage XCG4 Classic Guitar Stand

The On Stage XCG4 Classic Guitar Stand is the cheapest guitar stand in this list, with a street value of $10.99. This is a small, yet incredibly sturdy stand that will protect your guitar when you’re not using it.

There is a velveteen rubber bottom that’s completely removable at the bottom of the stand in order to hold the body of your instrument; there is also a cradle on the neck that has a security strap that’s also removable.

Another great perk that comes with the stand is that it can be adjusted for height differences, which means that it’s a great option for any guitar! Check out the latest prices and discounts here!

Pro File Wall Mounted Guitar Hanger

If you happen to be a musician who doesn’t travel around with your instruments, but you have a collection of guitars, the Pro File Wall Mounted Guitar Hanger can hold your banjos, bass guitars, electric guitars, and acoustic guitars.

If you have children, pets, a small amount of floor space, or you’re just clumsy, the Pro File Wall Mounted Guitar Hanger can keep your instruments safe from damage!

Guitar Grip Hand Guitar Hanger

If you want a wall hanger for your guitar, but want it to spruce up your décor and not take away from it, the Hand Guitar Hanger from Guitar Grip will really add to your collection.

The hangers have been designed after human hands! You can choose the color of your hands and decide whether or not you want your hands to appear to be slender, have veins protruding from the skin, or have blurry hands. How cool is that?

Conclusion

Just a word of advice when going shopping for a guitar stand, there is something else you need to know. Your guitar stand is going to constantly be in contact with the finish of the guitar; you should be careful when using a stand with a guitar that has a nitrocellulose lacquer finish.

The finishes on a guitar are either polymer based or nitrocellulose. If you have a polymer based finish, you don’t have to worry about what type of guitar stand to purchase, as polymer based finished are safe to use with any guitar stand. Polymer-based finishes are typically found on guitars that are built in the factory. Nitrocellulose is found on custom built or vintage guitars.

Buying a stand for your guitar isn’t just finding a stand to lay your instrument on. You really have to make sure that you’re purchasing a guitar that fits your lifestyle and what type of instrument you’re putting on the stand. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this article!

Top Five Best Guitar Humidifiers

Top Five Best Guitar Humidifiers

Did you know that your acoustic or classical guitar is under constant threat? Most beginner and intermediate players don’t know this, but keeping the wood of your guitar moist is imperative.

You don’t want the wood of your guitar to be living in conditions that make great firewood; instead, you want the living conditions to be nice and humid. If you don’t take proper care of the wood that your guitar is made from, disastrous things can happen!

Your guitar is not created to be able to withstand major changes in humidity; guitars are assembled in factories where the humidity is put under strict control. Guitar manufacturers understand that there when there is the slightest change in humidity, they risk warping or swelling the wood of the guitar before the instrument is even finished.

Even guitar stores tend to be a bit cooler than the average home and this is just to ensure that the guitars are not exposed to any humidity or temperature extremes.

Once the guitar you purchase finally ends up in your hands, you have to keep up with the maintenance! Some guitar owners spend thousands of dollars on their guitars but don’t understand that they have to give their guitars a humid place to be stored.

Having a guitar that’s dried out doesn’t sound terrible, but it can have disastrous results. A guitar that’s dried out can cause the guitar to crack, which alters that glue to dry out, the wood to separate, major changes in the actions, frets to stick out, and joints to become loose. All because you didn’t keep your guitar in a humid environment!

Before Buying Tips

Before you go and start researching any old humidifier for your guitar, you need to know that there are actually two different types of guitar humidifiers. There are:

  • Guitar case humidifiers
  • Soundhole humidifiers

Guitar case humidifiers sit inside of the guitar case and typically rest right underneath the headstock.

Soundhole humidifiers are the more popular humidifier. These types of humidifiers can either cover the sound hole or sit right in between the strings of the guitar.

You can also purchase a room humidifier in order to provide humidity for your guitar. Room humidifiers keep the entire room your guitar is stored in at a steady level of humidity. If you own several guitars, this is probably the best option for you to go with.

While purchasing a guitar humidifier is important, how you use it is also important. If you don’t use your humidifier properly, you’ll also risk damaging your guitar. Make sure that when you use a sponge for your humidifier, that it’s a damp sponge, not a soaking wet one. Having a dry guitar isn’t good, but having a wet guitar is also not what you’re looking for.

Also, make sure that your consistently check on your humidifier; no two environments are the same, so you should monitor your humidifier to see when it needs to be re-hydrated. You should need to dampen your sponge at least once a week.

Planet Waves Humidipak Two Way Humidity Control System

This humidifier maintains the humidity level as a consistent 45%. It’s easy to use, especially because you don’t want to worry about sponges or water. If you purchase the Humdipak Kit, you’ll receive three Humidipaks that come along with a mesh pouch that will allow you to avoid harming the finish of your guitar.

The biggest complaint about the Planet Waves Humidipak Control System is that when it’s inserted, it stretched the strings on the guitar out. Also, if you want to truly take advantage of the entire humidifier system, you’re going to have to store your system in your hard case. There is also no measuring device for the amount of humidity the system is putting out.

Oasis Instrument Humidifier

The Oasis Instrument Humidifier is very popular mainly because the most recent models humidify the entire case, not just the instrument. This means that you don’t have to stick the humidifier into the guitar, lowering the chance of you damaging your guitar.

Not to mention that the Oasis Humidifier can raise the humidity an extra ten percent if you live in a very dry environment! I also love how that when the humidifier gets low on water, the humidifier collapses, so there’s no second guessing if your humidifier needs water.

The downfall to that is that this device does tend to dry out quickly, so make sure that you consistently check the device.

Kyser Life Guard Humidifier

The Kyer Life Guard Humidifier is great if you want to keep your guitar displayed on a stand; this humidifier covers the sound hole, which ensures that the humidity is distributed evenly throughout the guitar. I personally recommend this humidifier to anybody who doesn’t like keeping their guitar in a case and likes to leave it out on display.

The humidifier fits very well into the sound hole, so it’s not going to be a sight for sore eyes. However, if you have a sound hole that isn’t shaped like the generic sound hole is, this humidifier may be a struggle for you to get into the guitar.

Music Nomad Humitar

The humidifier from Music Nomad has a very low profile in in the sound hole, which allows you to completely close the top of your guitar case without hitting the humidifier. You also don’t have to worry about dripping with this humidifier, as the synthetic sponge that’s in this humidifier holds more water than a typical humidifier and it comes with an Anti-Drip function.

Also, there’s no need to buy any replacement packs because this is a one-time purchase! The only downfall with the Humitar is that it is recommended that you only use distilled water for the humidifier.

Martin Guitar Humidifier

The Martin Guitar Humidifier is shaped like a snake and is made from fine materials, which allows this humidifier to absorb ten times its weight in water. There are holes in this humidifier which allows moisture to slowly come out of the holes; this is a very simple design. You can just stick the tube around the sound hole and it’s super affordable!

The only con about the Martin Guitar Humidifier is that it doesn’t have any sort of device to measure the amount of humidity that the device produces.

Conclusion

You should not be hanging your guitar on the wall every day, all day. Keeping your guitar stored in a hard case is the best way to protect it from physical damage and the different changes in the elements.

Hard cases are better for your guitar compared to soft cases, but soft cases still offer some protection from the temperature and minimal physical damage. If you have a lot of guitars in one room, you may have to purchase two humidifiers, which is completely normal!

The Top 8 Best Guitar Books for 2017

The Top 8 Best Guitar Books for 2017

When I first picked up my guitar, I thought that YouTube was going to be the only teaching method that I would ever need. But, as I became a more advanced player, I quickly realized that that way of thinking was totally incorrect.

My first year after picking up a guitar for the first time ever, I went to my local music store and purchased my very first guitar book.

Years later, I probably now have around forty guitar books stacked up on my bookshelf. There were so many things that YouTube never taught me and that I only really learned because of the teachings that were inside of guitar books. YouTube isn’t a great place to learn how to read music, especially for a guitar.

The only downfall that I’ve noticed with having a whole large collection of guitar books is that some of the books repeat the same information that’s found in other books.

The bright side to this is that I’ve found that some books do not explain new topics, ideas, or theories very well. In other books, there’s that repeated information but explained in a way that I understand it much better.

The books that I have listed in this article do not need to be read in any certain order. If you are a beginning guitarist, I would suggest that you check out books that are made specifically for beginners. This list has been comprised with intermediate and advanced guitarists in mind.

101 Guitar Tips: Stuff All the Pros Know and Use

This was one of the very first books that I purchased for guitar. The title really caught my attention and I knew that over time, I was going to learn a whole lot.

If you’re an intermediate guitarist looking to expand your knowledge, an advanced guitarist that’s not had formal training, or a beginner who wants to have a book that they can use as they grow, I would really suggest this book. It’s really interesting too, because this book also has snippets of advice from famous guitarists.

I also enjoyed this book because not only did it give me advice about playing guitar, tips, and tricks, but it also talked about how to get into the world of professional musicianship.

I also enjoyed all the little bits of information that this book had to offer, like tips on how to maintain gear, how to properly warmup, tips for recording, basic and advanced techniques, basic and essential music theory, musical concepts, and a bunch of different playing styles.

When I talked about this to some of my guitar friends, I was very surprised to find out that none of them have ever heard of it. In my personal opinion, this is the best book that I’ve ever purchased.

Hal Leonard Guitar Method Book and CD

You can also purchase this book with a CD.  The Hal Leonard Guitar Method Book 1 is one of the most popular books for beginning guitar classes; teachers and professional guitar teachers love using this book to begin teaching.

This book starts out with the very basics of learning guitar, like learning the parts of the guitar, how to properly hold the guitar, how to play individual notes, chords, and melodies.

You can personally go through the book itself, go through with a teacher, or learn the book in a class setting. The book goes over melodies that are more traditional, which helps bring familiarity to the sound of the music being played, which helps to make learning easier.

The only complaint that I have about this book is the beginning goes very slow and even, but after around chapter nine, it really picked up its pace and became a lot more advanced. However, if you’re not in a class setting, you can take your time and really work through the difficult parts.

There are two more books in the Hal Leonard series that continuously advance as you get through each book. They’re very popular and are easy to find in music stores, specialty stores, and even online.

You can go ahead and purchase the Hal Leonard Guitar Method books, which is three books in one spiral-bound volume that also comes with CDs. I personally think this is an amazing value, especially since you can learn at your own pace and not have to slow down in order to wait for another book to arrive in the mail.

You can always skip over things you already know or go back and re-learn things that you have forgotten.

Guitar Fretboard Workbook

The Guitar Fretboard Workbook is a book that’s very popular on Amazon and that’s because of how well it teaches the hardest parts of learning guitar. All in eighty pages, this book talks about how to navigate the fretboard properly and quickly.

While being able to apply proper techniques to the guitar will take you months and years to completely master, being able to understand how to properly apply these techniques is the important part. The exercises in this book have helped me memorize scales, chords, and a whole bunch of guitar theory.

Speed Mechanics for Lead Guitar by Troy Stetina

If you’re an advanced guitarist that’s looking to improve your speed and technique, this book really goes over how to truly improve your technique.

I used this book to improve my jazz picking technique as a lead guitarist in a jazz band, I also have friends who used this book for improving their country techniques, but this book is mainly aimed at guitarists who play in the rock and metal genre.

If you’re looking to improve your speed and your picking technique, and you’re willing to put in several hours of work, this book will truly be a big help to you. I really would suggest this book to any advanced guitarist who is looking to advance their skills or even looking to take their abilities to a new musical direction.

This book is advanced and is certainly going to teach you a few new things.

Music Theory for Guitarists: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know But Were Afraid to Ask

If you’re a guitarist looking to truly learn guitar, meaning the instrument and the theory that comes with it, this is an excellent book for you to check out. This is a book that really gets into the nitty gritty parts of theory and even comes with quizzes and worksheets that really help you to understand what you’re learning.

As a guitarist who originally just planned on learning to be able to perform covers, I quickly realized that I was going to have to read music in order to be the musician that I wanted to be.

As I began to learn music theory on the internet, I found that the material that I was learning just wasn’t going deep enough. In this book, I found detailed explanations of chords, diatonic harmonies, chord construction, melodies, and rhythms. I wanted to learn more and I wanted to proficient when I was done learning.

This book truly has it all, including writing, exercises, different diagrams, quizzes, and worksheets for you to work on.

Music Reading for Guitar (The Complete Method) by David Oakes

Being able to fluently read music is an important and useful skill to have. Even if you are taking guitar classes, there are some teachers out there who don’t know how to properly explain how or why music works.

That’s why I truly suggest new musicians check out music theory books; they’re great resources to learn from and you can always go back and check up on things that you may forget over time.

While it isn’t necessary to know how to read music to be able to play guitar, it is a skill you’re going to want to have if you want to progress faster.

If you want to become a professional guitarist or perform with a band, I would suggest that you take your skill levels past the basic skills taught in the Hal Leonard books and purchase a book that just teaches you how to read music.

Music Reading for Guitar is a complete course filled with every musical term you’ll need to know as a guitarist. No matter what genre you play, this book starts with the very basics of learning how to read music and covers everything all the way up to advanced topics.

My only complaint about this book is that if you’re looking to play finger style or classical, you’re going to want to look at a different book. The Music Reading for Guitar focuses mostly on single-note playing. However, if you plan on playing in the pop, rock, or metal genre, this book will be a lot of help to you!

Guitar Reading Workbook by Barrett Tagliarino

If you’re looking for a book that also delves into the world of not only learning how to read music but also how to write music, the Guitar Reading Workbook by Barret Tagliarino does exactly that.

This book also covers the basic steps in sight reading, all the way to advanced techniques to use when sight reading difficult pieces of music. I would also suggest this book to those who plan on playing in the rock, metal, pop, and electric genre, rather than those who want to play finger style or classical.

Pumping Nylon: The Classical Guitarist’s Technique Handbook by Scott Tennant

The technique that comes with learning classical guitar is very different than other styles of guitar. If you plan or wish to learn classical guitar, I would highly suggest that you take private lessons; it’s a tricky style to learn and it’s very easy to become frustrated while learning.

However, if you are dead set on learning how to play on your own, there is one book that I would highly suggest to you. This is the same book that I used to learn how to play Spanish guitar technique with.

This book has exercises in it that I practiced over and over again. It also has several famous pieces of musical literate inside, which always helps people to learn aurally. You can play along with the CD, see lessons on the DVD that comes with the book, or just read the book!

In Conclusion

As you become more comfortable with guitar, new ideas and techniques that you learn will become easier to apply. If you’re a beginner that’s just starting out and are reading this article, I would highly suggest that you pick up a book on music theory and a book that talks about the major lesson that you want to learn.

The great thing about learning with a book is that you can take your time and learn at your own pace. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about some of my favorite guitar books.