My 13 yr old son is interested in learning guitar - suggestions?

Discussion in 'Guitar Lessons' started by ttbit, Jun 24, 2016.

  1. Kris Ford

    Kris Ford Senior Member

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    I would have bought him a guitar before a video game console. :naughty:
     
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  2. frankv

    frankv What Are You Waiting For? Double Platinum Supporter Premium Member V.I.P. Member

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    Yeah I agree with that. But I think buying my grandson a guitar for his two year old Christmas present was a little premature:thumb:
     
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  3. ttbit

    ttbit Senior Member

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    :)

    He has a PC with a good video card in it. He saved for a year for it, and I built it with him. That being said, he did start off with a Wii (family console), and he did buy some used things like a Game Boy and Game Cube. I won't buy video games for him. I told him he makes enough money to buy that stuff on his own. I have no problems investing in his other interests though.

    GET THIS THOUGH. Sonic is what got him into music. He seems to like some 80's metal. You just never know where they are going to get it from. In this case, I might be able to say thank you to video games!? I think he just had to somehow find something on his own, so it would be his. He keeps mentioning Crush40 and wanting to play that.

    I waited until he had interest. I tried pushing it a little on him years ago, and it didn't work. He did play piano for less than 2 years, but he did not enjoy it, I believe due to the way it was presented.

    I had a thing for music when I was super young. Played keyboard in competition until I was about 12, maybe a little younger. It burned me out. I was always really nervous about playing in front of people and it just wasn't any fun to me, although I liked to play. My dad would ask me to play every time there was a piano or keyboard in the room...in front of anyone who was there. I know how that drive/love can really be destroyed. I stopped playing keyboard until just some years ago and only just a little.

    I was glad to see all of the re-enforcement of making sure I keep it fun. I guess my own experience isn't swaying my thoughts too badly.

    Never thought about drop-D either. Loved early Soundgarden. :)

    He likes Rage Against the Machine. I am not one to shelter too much, but I have to skip some of that... I mean you hear "F U I won't do what you tell me!" 50 times and it is going to sink in. :)

    Sorry for the ramble and thanks again.
     
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  4. frankv

    frankv What Are You Waiting For? Double Platinum Supporter Premium Member V.I.P. Member

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    Yeah, once every 400 to 500 posts I make have use. hahahahahah:D
     
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  5. nitrodave08

    nitrodave08 Senior Member

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    Nawww, $75 3/4 strat. I have it hanging up low enough for him to "strum" it at his fancy. And plugged into the PA so he gets some sound. The fun part is when I plug it into my pedalboard and let the delay go.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  6. Guitar Rod

    Guitar Rod Senior Member

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    JustinGuitar. He teaches things the right way. Shows you the "easy" way but encourages just learn it the proper way in the first place. Like an "A" chord. I always did it 2/3/4 like I learned in school. Now I do it 2/1/3 like he encourages and man does it make chord changes easier.

    And today I finally learned Smoke on the Water from him! After 30+ years of noodling on the guitar, I figured it was about time. :D
     
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  7. ttbit

    ttbit Senior Member

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    hahahahhahahahhaha... My son went to play that today and it was in a different key. He figured out by ear. He is on his way. :) I have used JustinGuitar myself.
     
  8. ttbit

    ttbit Senior Member

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    Good ratio, actually. :)
     
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  9. RandyRhoadsLesPaul

    RandyRhoadsLesPaul Senior Member

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    When I first started, I started on acoustic (wanted to be an electric guitar player) to build my roots. At first, I was super unmotivated, but then when I finally switched to electric and listened to many artists, I was still unmotivated.:D


    But then, I realized that the guitar is nothing but a canvas to throw your brain on. It's abstract, it's my 'train set.' It brought out the best in me.

    That's what got me motivated. If your son is interested in learning guitar, make it fun for him. But of course, there is that phase where 'the boring stuff' needs to be taught. If he can make it through that, the rest of the learning is fantastic and lets him explore himself through the wood.

    Good luck!

    P.S. I also became motivated by artists.
     
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  10. SteveC

    SteveC Village Elder V.I.P. Member

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    Several years ago, I stated teaching my (at the time) 12yo grandson. I didn't bog him down with theory, or chord shapes, etc.

    I asked him what song he wanted to learn first. He replied, "Basket Case!"

    So, we checked out YouTube for a lesson/play-through and spent about a week on it. Then I found a backing track (without guitar) and we rehearsed with that. Afterwards, we got my daughter, her husband and my wife together and he "performed it for them. That was an amazing day (for both of us).

    Since then, he's been learning songs as fast as he can.

    Know what? Along the way, he's figuring out chords, scales, theory and all that other stuff... without even knowing that he's learning.

    Long story short... get him playing songs that he likes; the rest of it all will take care of itself.
     
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  11. spitfire

    spitfire Senior Member

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    ^^^ +1

    I think this is probably the best way for most people. After all it is about making music playing songs.

    But everyone is different, so what is most important is to keep them motivated. And while learning songs is probably the best motivator for most people, others may have other goals. Like they want to be able to play like (insert guitar hero here).

    But I agree that whatever gets someone making the music they want quickest and easiest is the best way to get them hooked. There needs to be some early payoff. Not some boring "wax on, wax off" mindless studies before you get to have fun making music.
     
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  12. ttbit

    ttbit Senior Member

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    Great story, SteveC!
     
  13. voices

    voices Senior Member

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    advice in no particular order:
    practice using all four fingers
    learn to fingerpick
    learn to alternate pick
    learn theory
    listen to all players, not just guitarists.
    practice at least one hour per day, every day
    jam/play along with songs

    more advice available upon request :)
     
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  14. ttbit

    ttbit Senior Member

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    :) Thanks. I noticed him playing with his pinkie quite a bit. Must be something he learned on violin.
     
  15. Guitar Rod

    Guitar Rod Senior Member

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    I started with classical guitar in school and all the exercises and songs involved using the pinky. Same with chords like G and A. So when I'm watching a lesson video like Sweet Child of Mine, they only use 3 fingers and I initially used my pinky instead of stretching that 3rd finger over. But I figured they know what they are talking about, so I now use the 3rd finger. I should go back to the pinky.
     
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  16. Xandria

    Xandria Member

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    This is great advice. I call this learning the fundamentals. Also, don't forget to have him learn the open chords and their minors as well as barre chords and their minors on both the low E and A strings. Find songs that he likes and practice the transition between the chords.

    I plan on taking formal guitar lessons again starting in August and I have decided to learn the fundamentals of guitar; alternate picking, speed picking, trying different strumming patterns, hammer ons and pull offs, some scales, learning new chords,, transitioning between chords, etc. I figure why pay an instructor to tell me these basic things. By working on these fundamental areas, my lessons will be better and not as frustrating as when I had my first instructor ten years ago. Plus, I will be that much further along.

    I would set a practice routine of warm-up exercises, practicing chords and chord changes, scales (if he's interested), songs he knows. Also, set a goal to learn a few new chords every week, etc. Keep building his knowledge. There's another thread on here about how to practice and several other members posted their practice routine.

    Goals. I would ask your son what his goals are with the guitar. Then I would set some short-term goals, some mid-range goals, and some future goals. Some short-term goals may be to learn chords (open and barre) fluently and be able to play simple songs he likes. Mid-range goals may be like learning scales and starting to get more involved in music theory and playing more advanced songs and taking formal guitar lessons. Future goals might be that he wants to be a lead guitar player or it may be what level of guitar player he wants to be at in five years.

    One thing I learned from my first guitar instructor was that I should set goals. Well, we never actually set goals and when I finished his beginner course, I was shocked and felt like I wasted my time. If I would have known what the course consisted of and what he was going to teach me, I would have put in more effort and also would have been able to work through it much faster because I would have known where I was in regards to the topics and areas he was covering in his course.

    Also, by setting goals and having direction in where he wants to go with his guitar playing, he can incorporate exercises and songs that help gain the knowledge to achieve that goal.

    This is just my $0.02 worth from my experiences. My guitar playing isn't anywhere I want it to be at this point in my life. It's my fault for not setting goals, working on fundamental stuff, and also to keep learning new things like chords and scales and doing things that help me. It's my fault for always having excuses like, "I don't have time today to practice."
     
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  17. ttbit

    ttbit Senior Member

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    He is still playing. ;) He is doing 100 times better than I did at 18, when I tried to pick it up for the first time!
     
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  18. Frankg11

    Frankg11 Senior Member

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    I have over 1,700 playing in this game. It's a great way to have your son learn technique, the Arcade is a game zone which teaches scales, chords, bends, harmonics and more in a video game like atmosphere, The songs you play graduallly increase in complexity and the AI is pretty good at moving you along.

    There is an epic thread on RockSmith and you should take a look at it.

    Finally, there is a multiplayer mode. Two players can play any combination of the two: Lead, Rhythm or Bass.

    Funny thing is that I am firing it up right now to work on my playlist on Bass.

    It will teach you son many things, and a teacher helping along with some songs from the game will amplify good habits.
     
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  19. ttbit

    ttbit Senior Member

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    A follow-up post here! My son did not have enough interest in guitar. He has a good work ethic, just not much interest with the whole guitar thing. Well, he did School of Rock last summer and played some instruments and really liked the drums. He has been practicing several hours a week and has played out once already. He has a "school of rock" gig at one of the places downtown this weekend. Who knew? He is really good.

    I thought I would share as you just never know what your kids are going to find.... :) :)
     

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