Acoustic Guitar Lessons For Beginners? – Definite Yes!

Guitar is SO COOL!!!

So many greats from Chuck Berry, George Harrison, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, Joe Walsh, and Tommy Emmanuel to John Mayer, and Jonny Lang. Why wouldn’t anyone want to learn how to play guitar for crying out loud. Once I caught the bug it was game over and I still feel the same today.

There is a ton to figure out. Should you take lessons online, YouTube, DVD, or buy computer software? Yes, but the most important decision is figuring out what style of guitar is best to learn on?

Well, for me, it was really easy, the only guitar in our house was an acoustic guitar my sister gave up on so it was handed down to me. It was a real sweetheart with thick gauge strings and the action so high it made you cry from the pain. But I loved it!

When Seaside Funk performs you would be surprised how often I am asked by budding guitarists or parents of kids eager to learn what type of guitar, acoustic or electric is better. Of course, it is a personal decision but if asked I always recommend acoustic guitar lessons for beginners, no question.

Are Acoustic Guitars Easier To Play?

Compared to an electric guitar, not usually. It depends on the type (nylon versus steel) and what your budget allows. For the record, nylon string or better known as classical guitars tend to be easier to play.

My only reservation with classical guitars is that, by design, they have a wider neck which can make it more difficult, especially for younger players, to reach all the strings comfortably.

My best advice is to visit Sweetwater, Guitar Center or a local music store and tell them you are new to guitar and what would they suggest.

To Help Get You Started, Below are 4 Quality Acoustic Guitars Under $500:

Seagull S6 Cedar Original $419.00


Yamaha FG830 $299.99

Martin D Jr. 2 – Natural $499.00

Takamine GY11ME – Natural Satin $359.99

TIP: Try before you buy and do your research to find the best deal.

Master The Acoustic Guitar And Electric Is A Breeze

I know I am prejudice when it comes to acoustic guitar, it is my go to instrument, always has been. Just for the record I own 5 guitars:

  • Gibson J45 Acoustic
  • Gibson Songwriter Acoustic/Electric
  • Godin Multiac Nylon string Acoustic/Electric
  • Fender Stratocaster Electric
  • Ibanez Roadmaster, Electric

It is all about your hands

I know from my own experience to be an accomplished guitarist, you must master the feel of the guitar. Sounds kind of Zen like right? Maybe so.

I would suggest you read interviews with great guitarists. Across the board, they will talk about the importance of your hands as the key to making great music with guitar.

Seamlessly Transfer Acoustic Skills To Electric Guitar

Mastering the techniques and sound with an acoustic guitar will transfer easily to an electric guitar. You won’t have to rely on the all the effects available to make a great sound.

With your acoustic skills you will be able to enhance your electric guitar by combining the various amp or pedal effects to blow away the crowd.

Lessons – Online, Face-To-Face, or Computer Software

When I started out there were no options other than go to the Music Store and pay for lessons. I grew up in a college town and the teachers were typically college students trying to make some extra money. My instructor was not terribly reliable and showed up less than half the time so I quit.

Basically, I learned on my own with my trusty Mel Bay book while listening to records. My best lessons were bugging my guitar playing friends.

Today there are so many options, it is really confusing. YouTube has been great to give a platform to teachers to reach a broader audience. The nice thing is you can bookmark the YouTube site and play whenever you want. The same is true of computer software based lessons.

Both online and software have their challenges

You may have to search a lot of YouTube videos before finding a true teacher. There are a lot of amateurs that can teach some really bad technique. The upside is YouTube is free.

Software costs money and if they do offer a try before you buy, the content is limited so you have to take the plunge if you really want to see if it will work for you. Like YouTube, you can learn at your own pace and if it is a really good program, you can slow down the songs which makes it easier to learn.

Tip: I am sold on JamPlay as the best source for online lessons. It doesn’t matter if you are just getting started with guitar or are interested in improving your skills, they have you covered.

By far the best way to learn and improve your playing is to play with others. It’s fun and stimulating to make music with friends. Start a band!

I benefited in my early days by becoming friends with a local working musician that loved to show me his tricks. He eventually went on to become a studio musician in New York City. My time with him accelerated my skills 1000%.

Wrap Up

I hope I have given you some insight on the options available to learn the guitar. The bottom line is to become proficient you have to really love it. Despite it simplicity, guitar is not an easy instrument to master. Once you build up callouses, playing gets easier.

I try to play every day and when I don’t I get anxious. I am still not where I would like to be especially when I go to see the greats. Pretty humbling to watch Eric Clapton, Carlos Santana, Phil Keaggy, or Tommy Emmanuel. No matter, I love the instrument and the escape it provides from the day to day stuff life can bring.

I would love to hear how it is going and please share my blog with your friends.

To Your Guitar Success!







12 Comments on “Acoustic Guitar Lessons For Beginners? – Definite Yes!”

  1. Great info for beginners & motivating tips! I’m glad I found this blog because I have an acoustic guitar collecting dust for three years now. It’s intimidating as a beginner, but this helps me want to pick it up again. I love the sound of an acoustic guitar! Thanks for all of the online resources.

    • Hey Mike!

      That SG was a sweetheart, stupid that I sold it but I sold a lot of stuff over the years I probably should have held onto. Thanks for reading my post, very cool. Next time I am in Kent, we need to have a beer.

  2. I have both an electric guitar and an acoustic guitar, but I find the acoustic is way harder to play than electric, plus you need to be even more accurate with timing and fret board fingering.

    I think you’re right when you say that if you can master the acoustic, then electric is a breeze.

    I’ll check out some of the courses you have advertised.

    • Darren,

      Thanks for confirming my thoughts on acoustic. You are spot on regarding timing and fret board fingering. What I like to say about playing acoustic is there is no place to hide. 

      Appreciate you checking out the courses as well and hope you find them helpful. I try and buy anything I decide to promote.


  3. Yes! I loved this article. I am a music lover and have played in a jazz band before. But I never played guitar. I was a trombone player. I always wanted to learn guitar and for whatever reason never did it. I have big hands and sausage like fingers, what type of guitar do you recommend to begin with?

    • Hi Jim and thank you for taking time to post your comments. Thinking about your large hands and fingers, perhaps a classical guitar would be a good choice. Tthe neck is wider providing more space between the string to accommodate your hands. I did some research and in keeping with the under $500.00 theme, the  Cordoba C7 – Canadian Cedar Top is my recommendation.

      Let me know what you decide and thank you for visiting Seaside Funk.

  4. I do not really emerge into guitars but I have a father that all his life played guitar and struggled with me trying to teach me the basics of it. And I think learning playing guitar with a bunch of friends it’s the best ideas that way just like going to the gym everybody will find their strengths and weaknesses and support each other.

    • Agree Erick, my best guitar growth was playing with people better than me. Your gym analogy is spot on. Funny, I have two sons and neither bothered to learn guitar despite having 5 guitars laying around the house. 

      Thanks for your comments!

  5. Hi there,
    Thanks for sharing a good article to read about how anyone can learn to play guitar.
    I took a few lessons to learn to play guitar many years ago, I never was good at it.
    To learn to play guitar and to get good at it has been always on my To Do list.
    On my part time job, I work with three boys 8 years old (triples) and one of them it’s interested to learn to play guitar, I will forward your site to his mom!

    • I really appreciate you sharing the article! Guitar is my passion and I have played for over 50 years (yes I am old).

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