Saturday, February 25, 2006

On Learning Guitar - Where's the Guarantee?

On Learning Guitar - Where's the Guarantee?
By Frank Foxx

What a place the world wide web is. So much information. So much knowledge. So much, um - stuff – to wade through.

To look at the many commercial guitar websites out there, you’d swear a Satriani was being born every minute. The sites scream out at you – “play like a pro”, “insider secrets revealed”, “master guitar in 30 days guaranteed”… Amazing. In fact, all the guitar systems out there seem to be “guaranteed”. But “guaranteed to” what? Have you play like a pro? Have you play a song start to finish?

Actually, they’re guaranteed to the extent that if you return them within a specified time-frame, you’ll be refunded your money. That’s it. That’s all. There’s no actual guarantee that you will play guitar. There can’t be. You’re a human being. There’s no guarantee on anything.

That’s not to say that you shouldn’t aspire to learn guitar. It’s the most wonderful instrument in the world. Go into any local music store and watch the wizards wail, on electric or acoustic. Will you get there? That’s not certain. There are so many variables.

your natural musical inclination

your manual dexterity

your musical ear

Those are some of nature’s gifts (or lack of) which will affect the outcome. Then there are the more physical, down-to-earth factors:

your budget

your time constraints

the rest of your life outside guitar

Everyone would love to play the guitar at some point in their life. That’s a fact. The ultimate level of one’s success on guitar is dependent on all the above factors and more. Lessons are never a bad idea, if you can afford them. Practice, of course, is the only way to improve. Teaching aids such as those found on the internet can be a help. Watching guitarists (and musicians generally) in action can be an eye-opener and motivator. What it all adds up to is – there’s no guarantee.

But what about those novices or frustrated players who just can’t seem to find the zone? Where the very basics of the instrument seem to be a hindrance. All of the books, all of the coaching, all of the websites and their systems and aids, that don’t seem to help. Where progress is limited. Those are the ones I love to pick up. I’ve seen them all. From housewives, to six year-olds, to frustrated veterans, even good guitarists who just want to get better. I’ve got the way that is actually different.

My site has the same guarantee as everyone else’s – if you don’t like what you bought, return it and you’ll get your money back. What I also am able to guarantee is that my system, Guitar-eze, is truly easier. Especially at the outset, when most of your chords are played with one finger. Guitar-eze focuses on open-D tuning. You build from there; there’s way less to memorize, and less fingering technique to master upfront. It’s easier. Guaranteed.

Frank Foxx is a semi-professional guitar player and part-time guitar teacher who plays exclusively in the tuning of open-D. He has written a guitar method book, extolling the virtues of what he considers to be the most versatile and easiest of all guitar tunings, entitled Guitar-eze A Simpler Approach to Playing the Guitar. His website is He keeps a blog at dedicated to helping guitarists and aspiring guitarists see the light.

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