8 Myths of Learning to Play Guitar Between the Age of 30 to 65 Years Old
If you’re an adult who thinks it is too late to learn to play guitar successfully at your age, if you feel you’re already extremely busy and have no time for it, if you’ve tried before and failed, or if you think you can’t achieve such a dream because you were not born with musical talent, then you should definitely continue reading below...
My name is JAYE. They call me 'The Guitar Warrior', a nickname, given to me by my students, that symbolizes a 'Samurai' level of dedication to making a positive difference in the world via my craft.
The perspective I am about to share is based on real-life experience of having taught 12,000+ students (ranging from 5 to 82 years old) in my career so far, of which at least half are between the ages of 30 to 65.
Teaching acoustic and electric guitar is my deepest passion because, simply put, learning to play changes lives for the better. It brings peace, relaxation, joy, and balance when we most need it.
My teaching approach is the culmination of 25 years of research and field work as a music educator, musicologist, and professional musician. You can learn more about what I do, here: www.ArtistJAYE.com.
My experiences have gifted me with a unique ability to successfully teach people of all ages, 1-on-1 online via Skype (locally and around the world), in a fun and powerful manner that makes my Skype lessons even easier to follow than being in-person. I believe, more than ever, that sharing music unites us.
If music has always been in your heart, I suggest you sit back and take 5 minutes to read this article in its entirety…you may be pleasantly surprised by what you discover.
“I’ve always wanted to learn to play music but I won't succeed because I have no musical talents"
Contrary to popular belief, musical talent is not a must for learning to play great guitar because every physical and mental skill needed to play is trainable.
No matter your age, and even if you’ve never touched an instrument in your entire life, a masterful guitar teacher knows how to guide you via structured, logical and easy to follow, steps that quickly unlock every aspect of your musicality.
You can read more about my approach here: Message from Artist JAYE.
“I missed the boat….now I’m too old to learn how to play guitar effectively”
The advancements I witness daily with my 30 to 65 year old guitar students are, by far, the most impressive of any age group. They are the reason I am writing this article.
Learning to play guitar improves our capacity to focus, increases our ability to memorize, and helps us develop our sense of creativity at any age...most importantly, it brings us deep joy.
My students in their 70s and 80s also rock out and achieve their lifelong dream of playing guitar. The learning process helps maintain youthfulness and keeps the brain agile.
People who take up guitar lessons at 30 years old and older, are able to clearly understand and appreciate the life-enhancing aspects of learning to play...experiencing these aspects rapidly, at the very beginning of their musical journey, fuels their motivation and helps them succeed on the guitar further than they every dreamed possible for themselves.
Find out more about what I do, here: Guitar Lessons|All Styles of music|All Ages
“Younger students (5 to 30 years old) achieve better results than older age groups”
My younger students advance wonderfully, nonetheless there's no question that children are more susceptible to being distracted and not being consistent with practice.
Older students (from 30 to 65 years old) achieve outstanding results because as adults we understand the value of being consistent, and we welcome the peace, the fun, and the escape from stress that learning to play guitar offers.
As adults we’re also able to focus, listen, and apply what we learn, far more effectively than when we were children.
Learning from an experienced guitar teacher who has successfully coached people of all ages will enable you to see within just 1 lesson that achieving superb results is possible at any age.
Read about the most common questions people ask me, here: Frequently asked questions.
“Beginners can learn to play great guitar by watching and trying videos online”
The internet does not provide feedback.
When a student’s technique is not consistently observed and corrected by a professional (the mirror effect), poor habits develop that prevent the student from achieving their desired level of guitar-playing.
Millions of free online guitar tutorials are posted weekly. The reality is that beginners waste valuable time (in some cases numerous years) navigating through an overloaded jungle of guitar information online that simply leads to confusion and to being misinformed.
Every hour spent trying to figure out (through trial and error) which videos might be effective, is an hour less of practicing key aspects that will truly make a difference in one's progress.
Beginners who use online videos as guidance end up making random, uninformed decisions and assumptions about what must be trained, and how to go about it. Rather than experiencing the deep joy of learning to play, their lack of progress from turning in circles often leads to a state of frustration that causes them to give up.
“A great guitar player that posts videos online definitely knows how to teach guitar effectively to others”
There's a difference between personal experience and teaching experience. To be an effective leader in the field of music education, it takes having both types of experiences.
Unfortunately the vast majority of online guitar videos are posted by people who have insufficient day-to-day, real-life, teaching experience (and in many cases no teaching experience at all).
To a beginner, many of the professional looking online resources, and many great guitar players online, convey a convincing impression that the information shared comes from proven methods derived from actual 1-on-1 teaching experiences...but in reality, the vast majority of such videos (including the ones in ultra high definition) are usually based on a guitar player simply offering a personal opinion of what works for 'them'....on the other hand, one of the many benefits of taking lessons with an expert teacher is that they will instantly identify what specifically works for 'you'.
Guitar playing is a subtle and profound art-form that requires a solid foundation…if the vast number of online videos featuring great guitar players were truly helping people in that regard, my role as a guitar teacher would not exist.
“Learning guitar is simple, I can teach myself without receiving any guidance”
About 1 out of 25,000 people actually succeed in playing beautifully through learning to play guitar entirely by themselves.
Though you may learn to strum a song or two alone, how fluidly are you really able to play, and how good do you truly sound? Are you looking for a polite pat on the back that says, “not bad, keep trying”, or do you prefer to play in a manner that instantly impresses the person listening to you?
Very few beginners are aware that 80% of people who attempt to learn by themselves end up quitting guitar within 4 to 6 months due to frustration. To make matters worse, the 20% of people that continue trying to learn end up developing poor technique that prevents them from reaching their full potential.
“Trying to start my guitar journey alone will save me time and money… I’ll adjust by learning from a teacher at a later time, if I really need to”
Trying to learn by oneself is the least efficient approach, it leads to slow advancement which decreases motivation → decreased motivation causes people to practice less → less practice leads to a downward spiral.
Learning from an experienced teacher is the most efficient approach, it leads to rapid progress which fuels motivation → motivation inspires more practice → more practice leads to an upward spiral and success on the guitar.
After attempting to learn on their own for a while, most beginners finally realize that online videos set them up for defeat, consequently they look for someone with my experience…the danger is that poor habits are hard to break…we end up having to spend time “unwiring” the poor techniques they developed, only then can we begin to “re-wire” things the right way...it ends up taking a student much longer than if they had simply learned the right way to begin with.
“I would not take online Skype lessons because they present limitations, they offer no advantages, and ultimately they can never compare to the results of in-person sessions"
I've been teaching all facets of guitar playing, from A to Z, via personalized Skype lessons successfully for many years. I use the same personalized approach, I am the same crazy teacher, and my students achieve the same excellent results with me via online lessons...they typically start their journey off as complete beginners and, usually in record time, end up being able to play challenging songs comfortably in front of their friends and family.
My students and I experience no limitations whatsoever on Skype. Even my local students, in Montreal and Laval within Quebec (Canada), who try an online lesson with me, end up also switching to Skype because of the numerous advantages offered by online sessions, including: avoiding the stress of traffic, not wasting valuable energy and saving the travel time it takes to go back and forth to a local studio, having easy access to my teachings no matter where they are located, being able to see close-ups of my technique that are even clearer on-screen than being in person, etc...
It is definitely a big challenge for beginners to find effective online guitar educators because for a teacher to be consistently effective in teaching via Skype they must possess teaching and observation skills that are far beyond the standard abilities required to teach in-person.
For example; when in playing position, the thumb is placed behind the neck of the guitar and remains completely out of sight. Yet during an online lesson, I notice and help students instantly correct the position and angle of their hidden thumb (I'll typically use a short sentence that clarifies everything they'll need to know about proper thumb positioning so they can learn to recognize and adjust it without my help).
They often joke that I can see through the guitar, but that's precisely the degree of mastery an online guitar teacher must possess to be able to make online sessions as powerful as their in-person sessions. It's the kind of teaching level that can only be acquired through decades of person to person teaching experience...the ability to explain things clearly, with few words and precision, is also key.
In summary, a Skype guitar teacher must be an expert at creating an on-screen learning experience that is fun for the student and that feels identical to being coached in person. When this is achieved, Skype is the limit :)
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Article written by Artist JAYE "The Guitar Warrior" Premier Guitar Coach|Musicologist|Humanitarian www.ArtistJAYE.com