15 January 2009

Can't Afford Guitar Lessons - Part 2

Here's another follow up to the Guitar Learning Challenge "Can't afford lessons" showing you how to get cheaper guitar lessons.

Last week I gave you some ideas to reduce the cost of lessons with a real guitar teacher. This week we're going to look at some effective alternatives to a real teacher that cost less.

Your alternatives to a teacher basically involve studying a course in a book, video or online. Nowadays there are excellent video lessons available and you'll find them easier to learn from than a book. Video also has an advantage over a real teacher because you can watch and work with it at any time you like and as often as you like.

You will find three basic formats for video training, online, downloads, or DVD.

Online

Online training offers a fast and effective way to access thousands of guitar lessons. There are many offerings for all levels in different styles.

Video for these courses is streamed from a server on the Internet each time you view it. This means you need a reliable and reasonably fast Internet connection, you also need your computer connected to Internet each time you use the course.

Here are some things to look out for in good online guitar training:

1. Structured program to follow if you are a beginner or learning a new style
2. The ability to pick and choose custom lessons to fill in gaps or extend your skills
3. Interactive support from guitar experts - check this is available at the times you need it

Downloads

Online courses are good at delivering flexible lessons that you can pick and choose from to build your own course. But you do have to be connected to the Internet whenever you use them, and you need a fast enough connection to support the video streaming.

One alternative that avoids these drawbacks is a course that you download to your own PC. You can use it whenever you want without your Internet connection.

A download is also a good option for a structured course where you are going to follow all the lessons. It is particularly well suited to beginners or novices looking for a general introduction.

Downloadable courses are usually cheapest because the costs of producing and distributing DVDs and accompanying books are minimized. The other plus points are that you can download and start using them in only a few minutes and once you have downloaded the material is on your computer all the time without the need to connect to the Internet.

Here are the things to look out for:

1. Well structured, step by step training programme, not just a hotch potch bag of lessons.
2. Samples you can view to check the video and lesson quality before you buy.
3. Support to get technical or guitar help and ask questions.

DVDs

Of course you don't have to use your computer to follow your guitar video lessons. There is a huge variety of lessons and courses available on DVD.

DVD based lessons may cost a little more than a download because of the extra production and distribution costs. But if you are the kind of player that doesn't want to use anything more complicated than a TV remote control then DVD could be for you.

Not all DVD products offer interactive support, so check this before you buy. The Rock House is one publisher that offers support and extras through its web site.

You now have three low priced methods to get guitar lessons. Below you'll find some suggested resources, maybe one of them suits your learning needs.

Resources

Workshop Live offers great online guitar lessons. From $10 a month you get access to 16,000 video lessons covering beginner guitar, rock, pop, blues, folk, bluegrass and jazz styles. You can try it free for 7 days by clicking here.

Jamorama Acoustic is a leading multi-media guitar learning package that you can download. It covers everything the novice to intermediate guitarist needs to learn and progress. It includes several bonus tools including 26 acoustic backing tracks to jam to.

Shop for guitar DVDs or Rock House Guitar at Amazon.

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