Guitar popularity and Adelaide
When you think of music, a guitar probably comes to mind, and rightly so. Along with piano, guitar has been the mainstay of contemporary music for years and years, with the latter however only really coming to prominence in the couple of hundred. Music theory tended to centre around typically classical instruments at the time that the guitar appeared when people started to learn it in 16th century Spain. Guitar learning therefore only really became popular in the late 1800s on a wide scale in the west, around the time it made its way to Adelaide. Today, thanks to its prevalence in popular music and social element, guitar students and teachers are proliferating more than ever before, meaning you'll be able to find lessons easily.
On that note, learning guitar or getting brush-up lessons is surprisingly easy in Adelaide; there is a studio or school of music in almost every part of town, north or south, as a Google search will yield. Based on its world renowned fringe festival, the world's second largest, being such an expressive and musical city with a taste for piano and guitar is no surprise. So to help you take advantage of this, we're going to talk you through what sort of lessons your want, whether you want to learn acoustic, bass, or electric guitar, as well as what sort of tuition to consider and how to maintain your learning and take advantage of the social side of classical, jazz, and rock guitar playing.
Considering taking lessons
You'll quickly learn in your search that classifieds (both online and in person) are still a good place to peruse, as well as good old fashioned supermarket cork boards if you're wanting local guitar learning. Just shoot these prospective teachers an email to find out if they'll come to your home or invite you to their studio. Needless to say, finding a guitar teacher in Adelaide isn't the most complicated task for students thanks to the internet. A quick Google search of 'music/guitar lessons Adelaide' will yield lessons all over town, and email contact with teachers for private tuition or with a school is an easy way to get an idea of what you'll get from your teacher and lesson. This latter option might be a good choice as you'll receive tuition from professionals with years of experience, and is a highly recommended option if you are wanting to pair it with piano skills or take up classical guitar and theory.
In that vein, as Australia is a country that prides itself on choice, considering what you want to get from your learning and what style of guitar and music you want to focus on in you lessons is key, and to consider the level of theory you have versus your years of experience with guitar. If you're wanting to test the waters with your learning, and aren't sure quite yet what rhythms and music styles appeal to you, a good studio to consider is The Guitar Academy Adelaide as they're centrally located and provide tuition in basic guitar skills for acoustic, electric, and bass, and have expanded their teaching for those more confident to include banjo, mandolin, and ukulele classes.
So all things considered, it's important to think about the specific style you want to refine, what kind of guitar you're interested in, and how you want to structure your lessons. Let's break this down a little further to make the choice easier.
Main Types of Guitar
You probably have known what guitar sounds like from an early age, and the main types of guitar you'll hear people play in rock, jazz, or pop music are:
If you fancy yourself good at classical music, or like the idea of singing solo in your free time, an acoustic guitar would make you feel right at home. This being said, it also lends itself well to the rock experience. This is typically best for a solo artist and singer as it isn't over-powering like an electric guitar, so is great way to combine with vocal work you may be doing. Typically made of wood, an acoustic will come in various sizes, have a hollow interior, and have 6 nylon or steel strings (E, B, G, D, A, E), the former of which work better for flamenco, jazz, or classical, and the latter for folk, country, and rock. Your teacher will be able to advise you on the type and size of guitar to consider to achieve your goals.
The bass guitarist is often considered the one with the most mystique in a band. This is probably because they help the drummer keep time and give that depth to the music that will make you want to dance and move. As its name suggests, bass guitars are most of the time very deep in tone, and aren't generally front and centre in a band, and it's quite rare for a person to sing solo with one. Whilst they are still a guitar, they only have 4 typically strings (E, A, D, G) in steel, nickel, or an alloy of both, although more can be added to increase the range of the guitar depending on its importance in the musical arrangement. The strings are typically made of this blend to give it that subdued, thumping sound that gives that great depth to a piece of music.
Lastly, the most prodigious rock star will always opt for a electric guitar lesson, with a tutor teaching how to play, shred and steal the show. An electric guitar student would likely not just want to master the guitar, but already have an idea of how they want to use it in a band or create catchy music. Learning on electric won't actually add years to your tuition, but its appeal is definitely more for those who want to stand out specifically as the guitarist. This is because learning this style focuses the sound of the strings (E, B, G, D, A, E, same as acoustic, but generally all steel) which bear much greater strength and can amplify sound to a great extent compared to nylon on wood.
Types of lessons and their benefits
There are a variety of lesson styles across South Australia that are each great for just what you need help with in your learning.
A platform like Superprof is the home of that private tutor you've been looking for; it's the place you have access to hundreds of qualified and vetted teachers with years and years of experience across them, and specialising in different styles. This is recommended as the best class style if you're a complete beginner as you can get the attention you need for the complicated finger work that guitar involves.
Small group classes
If you feel more confident and don't need the teacher to spend as much time with you individually, this is a good option as you get the group spirit and can benefit from the social aspect of guitar and music, something you will find increases greatly once your friends find out you're an ace guitarist! And who knows, this might even be the place that you meet your future, world-famous bandmates!
A lot of the time, private classes will be offered either in your own or the teacher's home or alternatively at a studio or school in a private space. Small group classes are most likely to be held in a public place like a church hall with muted walls so you can play, or at the music school itself.
As has understandably become a trend this year, getting in touch with a tutor for Skype lessons is also a plausible option. They can still demonstrate the technique and explain the theory, with easily shareable materials via email. The online alternative might also be the most financially viable one as there are plenty of guitar tutorials on Youtube that can help you self-teach to complement what your instructor will teach you in classes.
Guitar playing and your life
Despite being known in Australia as the city of churches, Adelaide has a thriving festival and music scene, being highly renowned for its music school the Elder Conservatorium of Music, and its annual world music, arts, and culture festival, WOMAD. Also being a great city for students, there's loads of bars with live music, as well as classical concerts, so there's plenty of opportunities to hear a guitar played somewhere. Prodigious students to come out of having a studio in Adelaide over the years also include Paul Kelly, Cold Chisel, Sia, Guy Sebastian, and The Hilltop Hoods, so safe to say this is a good city to look for a music or guitar teacher.
Regular practice is obviously key to their and your success, but can sometimes be hard to stay motivated for. To keep yourself engaged and make the most of guitar being a social instrument, consider checking out some of the social guitar groups across South Australia where you can jam, get into the community spirit for swing and big band, or even guitar en masse for battles of the bands.
So what's the hold up? You might just be the next Jimi Hendrix, so get thinking about the style you want to master and what sort of classes suit you, and get those fingers picking and strumming!