You’re a classroom guitar teacher and you’re having trouble planning lessons. Maybe your kids are getting better on guitar faster than you. You want to stay ahead of the curve, but when would you have time to take lessons and where would you find money in the budget? Don’t despair. There are awesome resources out there for you. There are gurus who have short and smart video tutorials designed to make you better and sites with tons of free music. Here are some resources for you.
Taught by Thaddeus Hogarth, associate professor at Berklee College of Music, this course is designed to help you grasp the essentials of guitar. There are over 30 videos that explores the instrument, get you up and playing quickly and even a few that go into music theory. You’ll learn the fundamentals of playing guitar, the instrument itself and about some cool accessories.You can watch all the videos for free on YouTube or get certified on Coursera for just $49. Pay attention because a lot of what’s going on in this course can be placed right into your own lessons.
Justin is a guy, with a guitar, and a video camera. Justin is not an academic. He’s more like the video alternative of your best friend teaching you how to play guitar and he’s about as prolific as they come. You can go to Justin’s YouTube Channel and choose from hundreds of videos or try out his Beginner Course on his site. He’s got over 70 quick and dirty videos that will get you up and running fast. Topics range from how to buy a guitar to open chords + changes. The beginner course also comes with songs (sorry, no free sheet music). A lot of what’s going on in these videos may set you up with weeks worth of classes. If you want more, Justin’s Intermediate Method explores topics such as finger picking and barre chords. He also covers different genres such as rock, jazz and folk.
If my ears are feeling lazy or I just can’t figure out that chord, I go to UltimateGuitar.com. This site boasts 800,000 songs and will generally have the song you’re thinking about. Here’s the catch. Most of the songs will have many different versions – some great, some not as great. You may also be dealing with TAB (I know how some of you feel about TAB). Finally, the songs are generally not notated. You’ll usually get the chords and lyrics – basically a lead sheet. The vastness of their offering is insane and there are video lessons, but they’re not as plentiful.
This site serves the dual purpose of having clear, simple lessons – good mix of video, text, and chord charts – and a lot of free sheet music. The lessons will fit neatly into the first 4 – 8 weeks of your classroom guitar program. However, the big bonus is in the sheet music! The site has lots of free music that has been arranged by its authors and made available for all to download. Check out the girth of guitar ensemble music.
Keep learning and let us know what your favorite guitar links are!