When I was first learning how to play music, the world was a lot different than it is now.
There was not an abundance of online educators, there was no YouTube, and the best you could do in terms of home instruction was to purchase DVDs from your favorite players.
Now, in 2023, the world has changed entirely.
It’s easy to learn on your own at home. And yet, when it comes to guitar (or any instrument, for that matter) lessons, most people are still stuck in the past.
They still block off time during their schedule each week and travel to a local music shop to get lessons.
Now, we are supporters of local business and we’d never want to take anything away from your local music shop.
However, that doesn’t mean it’s the best place for you to get lessons.
If you want to learn how to play the guitar in 2023 or beyond, we think you should consider online guitar instruction.
Here are a few reasons why:
1. Niche Learning Opportunities
When considering the opportunity to learn how to play, most people don’t give consideration to how they want to learn.
Sure enough—you don’t know what you don’t know—but again, in this day and age, it’s easier than ever to research the opportunities beforehand and learn what kind of instruction you want to receive.
And the bottom line is, that type of instruction may not be available where you live.
Here are two examples.
My friend Kevin has a company called Relax and Learn Guitar. He teaches guys over 40 who want to learn in a relaxed, informal environment, teaching exactly the type of music that appeals to his target audience.
His student is not the 9-year-old who wants to shred an electric guitar in a garage band (or a famous band) one day.
Then, there’s us. At Worship By Numbers, we teach regular people who want to learn how to play music in their church’s worship band how to play using a system called the Nashville Numbers System.
It’s very niche, and similar to Kevin’s vibe, very laid back.
You’d have to jump through a lot of hoops to get learning experiences like ours from a local instructor, assuming it is even possible.
Online guitar instruction allows you to take part in niche learning experiences that deliver exactly what you need and want to learn.
2. Your Time, Your Way
One of the biggest reasons I taught myself how to play was concerns about scheduling.
I was a busy kid. In a few bands, going to school full-time, school band and extracurricular activities… I simply could not work traditional guitar lessons into my schedule.
So, I learned on my own. I bought books and did my best to learn how to play in the more “traditional” path starting with Twinkle Twinkle, Little Star and the like.
But that was not ideal. I didn’t have anyone guiding me at home.
Now, that’s all changed. For example, we have both Guided and Self-Taught versions of our courses. You could go along with an instructor using video messaging or go it alone with our in-depth training courses.
Either one is available to you, and it’s affordable, too!
Traditional music lessons are usually a minimum of $50/week and require you to schedule time outside the home to learn.
Online guitar instruction does away with all of that and allows you to learn when and where you want.
3. Avoid the Messy Middle
One of the most frustrating things about traditional lessons is what I call “the messy middle.”
There comes a time, somewhere around three months or so in when you begin to stagnate. The lessons can get repetitive because you are in the middle of learning something more difficult that simply takes time.
This means that each week you will be paying for lessons that don’t really move the needle. Really, you’ll just be practicing in front of someone.
That helps, but it gets repetitive and makes it harder to stick with.
With online guitar instruction, you make the rules on when to move on and when you ask for help, and you won’t be paying for time that you really don’t need.
As soon as you’re ready, just open up the next lessons and keep on moving.
Here’s the reality too: Sometimes it’s okay to move on faster than an instructor might want you to. You may find something in the next lesson that is easier for you and even helps you make progress on the place where you were stuck.
It’s much more flexible when learning online.
4. On Demand, In Demand
Speaking of learning online—and this is my favorite thing about online guitar lessons—you can always go back and watch lessons you’ve already seen before or explore new lessons as soon as they drop.
Let’s focus on the first one, though, because it’s a game-changer.
When you get traditional music lessons from a traditional instructor, those sessions are not recorded, and that is material you can never “access” again or be reminded of.
But with online guitar instruction, this is not the case.
Every lesson is pre-recorded, and even the one-on-one video help is available forever for you to watch.
This means you can watch lessons as many times as you need to. You can always reference previously recorded materials to make sure you are doing it right.
What a game-changer! If I’d had an on-demand library of lesson content to access when I was learning, I probably could have learned in half the time—especially since I was teaching myself.
5. The Right Instructor
Once again, with traditional lessons, you are limited to the instructors available in your local area.
I’m sure these are great guys and gals, but the fact remains that your options are limited and you may have to compromise.
For example, we teach people who want to be a part of their church worship band how to play praise and worship songs and hymns. We are guided by a Christian worldview and are aligned in that way.
But the teachers in your area may only focus on, say, learning how to play 80s hair band music (because that’s what they grew up on).
There’s nothing wrong with that, but they may not be ultimately very helpful when it comes to learning the kind of music you want.
If you want to learn Bluegrass, you can’t really learn that from someone who specializes in pop/rock music. And vice versa!
Online guitar lessons save the day once again.
You can find a company and/or instructor who teaches exactly the kind of music you want to learn on exactly the type of instrument you want to play.
With some extremely rare exceptions, you can find exactly what you are looking for online, and it will probably be more affordable, too.
Yes, we’re a little biased, but at the end of the day, we think online guitar lessons are a much better option for students.
With unmatched flexibility and a content library that is always accessible and ever-growing, there’s no better way to start learning the guitar today.
And if you want to learn how to play worship music in your church band using a system that’s dead simple (and used by pro musicians everywhere), sign up here.