So you've decided to learn how to play guitar! Playing can be a challenging but very rewarding hobby take on. As with most things, you must be persistent in order to succeed. Becoming a skilled player takes practice and determination. It would be wise to question your motives before investing in an instrument and equipment, as it can become very costly very quickly.
1) Choosing Your First Guitar
There are two standard types of guitar, acoustic and electric. It is advised to learn how to play on an acoustic before purchasing an electric guitar. Reasons include the size of the guitar neck (learning on a bigger guitar neck makes the transition to a smaller/electric neck much easier, as finger strength builds), the ability to perform without investing in an amp or pedals, and mastery of technique (if you can learn how to pick each note without unwanted buzzing from an acoustic, you’re more than ready to pick up an electric).
If you would like to start on an electric guitar, that’s fine too. Just be aware that most acoustic guitar necks are thicker and take up more hand surface area than their electric counterpart. This may discourage someone who has been playing electric guitar to pick up acoustic playing (think of it as driving an automatic car and then switching to manual later on).
2) Where to Start
There are many great online resources to choose from. Ultimate Guitar and YouTube are highly recommended starting places.
Instead of paying for a guitar instructor, you can use YouTube to learn the proper way to hold a guitar and how to read tablature. Once you master those two things you’re ready to learn scales and riffs from Ultimate Guitar!
3) Success Tips
In order to be successful as a guitar player, you have to stay motivated. Do you want to win the heart of your crush? Start a project and tour the world? Play Wonderwall at birthday parties? Remember why you started and don’t give up through the frustration and finger calluses.
Learning to play with friends is a great way to be held accountable for your progress, and to learn things you might not have discovered on your own. Find others with similar interests and music taste and you won’t be sorry that you did.
Most important of all, be original and practice practice practice! Best of luck!