Online Guitar Lessons

From Flamenco music to folk music, rock to concert halls, home singing to industry performances, the guitar is one of the most common musical instruments. But once you have bought yourself a guitar, you will be confused as to what are the next steps. Do you hire a guitarist? Do you have to go to school to learn of the guitar? And how hard is it to become proficient with the instrument?

For the uninitiated, these questions can be a bit daunting. Thankfully due to the popularity of online courses like Jamplay and Guitar Tricks, you can learn how to play the guitar at your own pace, in the comfort of your own home.

Online Guitar Lessons


The guitar requires time, consistency, and a dedication to a schedule, especially in the beginning. The initial lessons will be awkward, sometimes even a bit painful. The first six months is when you will have to be the most patient with yourself. The type of guitar also will mold your learning experience, with some recommending that beginners start with an acoustic guitar, while others note that a classical guitar might be easier. No matter what people say or recommend, you should choose a guitar that you prefer to play.

Benefits of Jamplay and Guitar Tricks Online Courses

While there is a litany of online courses and products for aspiring guitarist, Jamplay and Guitar Tricks have been the go-to resources. Both of their online courses are comprehensive in their approach, catering to almost all skill levels and playing styles.

1. Accessibility. This is where the key benefits of taking online courses to learn a new instrument — as long as you have access to an Internet-connected smartphone, tablet, computer, or laptop, you have access to the course. This means that you can learn in the comforts of your bedroom, or take the lessons with you whenever you’re traveling.

2. Affordability. Hiring a music teacher or a professional guitarist to teach you how to learn to play can be very expensive very quickly. You will have to spend hundreds of dollars for a set amount of instruction hours. For courses like JamPlay and Guitar Tricks, you only had to pay a monthly subscription to have access to the course load.

3. Greater ability to concentrate. Sometimes teachers move a bit too fast. With online courses, you will be able to pause the video, learn, and concentrate at your own pace without feeling pressured to move forward when you aren’t comfortable.

4. Open ecosystem. With online courses, you do not have to start at the very beginning. For example, if you are already familiar with the guitar, you can skip parts and review lessons pertaining to a skill that you want to perfect.

What Is JamPlay?

JamPlay is an online instructional subscription service that has helped novice and professional guitarist since 2006. The company was founded by Kevin Wilmer, Jeff Booth, and Chris Dawson. It has over 4000 lessons, 70 professional instructors who offer instructional videos, as well as live chat with your teachers. With more than half a million members, JamPlay has become the preferred resource for those who want to play the guitar.

One of the benefits of the online course is that the format is highly accessible and easy to navigate regardless of your skill level. Many people who are starting off playing with the instrument are a bit intimidated or off-put when faced with a wall of information — JamPlay does a really good job at making sure that information is digestible. The entire website is laid out in a way that you can learn a new technique or learn a new song. There’s also a “Scene Selection” on the sidebar that enables you to choose what part of a song you want to learn, as well as corresponding lessons from instructors. Video players are intuitive, with speed adjustment toggles that allow you to adjust the playback speed so you can closely follow what the instructor is doing in the video.

For those who are starting, you’ll be glad to know that JamPlay offers a complete section for novices called Phase 1. You can pick up a particular style like an electric guitar or rock and blues. There are also subsections for acoustic guitars, learning how to play chords, and familiarize yourself with scales and strumming patterns. Regardless if you are a fan of the classical guitar or an acoustic guitar, JamPlay has a network of lessons for them.

Once you become more familiar with the beginner “phases”, you can tap into the advanced lessons. These lessons have courses dedicated to different genres by covering the techniques and playing styles in blues, jazz, rock, and many more. Phase 4 is for advanced players who want to learn how to song write. This allows members to choose a series and watch instructors cover the unique techniques and theories behind writing and creating music.

What Is Guitar Tricks?

Guitar Tricks is another online platform for those who want to learn how to play the guitar. It is one of the older online lessons, with the tutorial site launching in 1998. This has allowed Guitar Tricks to iron out any sort of issues and truly service the community. Also due to it being an older platform, there is a larger lesson database that is hovering around 11,000 with instructors teaching how to play 700 songs.

While Guitar Tricks is ideal for beginners, it’s a bit thin when it comes to advanced lessons pertaining to specific categories. While JamPlay offers advanced lessons in a litany of genres, Guitar Tricks only offers advanced lessons in a trio of styles — country, blues, and rock. These genres are highlighted in the advanced Core Learning System. Guitar Tricks does not offer lessons for bassists, with Guitar Tricks solely focusing on six-string electric guitars and the acoustic guitar. This may change in the future, but for those who are bassists, they might be out of luck.

JamPlay vs Guitar Tricks

Both JamPlay and Guitar Tricks offer in-depth lessons and are always pushing the boundaries to ensure that they are an all-inclusive answer to aspiring guitars. However, there are distinct features of the two platforms.

One of the key differentiating factors between the two services is the breadth and skill of the instructors. While Guitar Tricks features a fantastic roster of instructors, it is hard to beat the instructors that are featured on JamPlay. Compared to Guitar Tricks’ 30 instructors, JamPlay has more than 90 that represent a mixture of age ranges, styles, and experience levels as well as perspective specialties. There’s also the ability to learn how to play songs from the actual artists who wrote the song.

While you expect quality videos and instructions to the ins and outs of the guitar, JamPlay takes it a step further with additional content. JamPlay takes it a step further with its Artist Series. These series represent a range of live courses as well as intimate Q&A sessions with the teachers. This means that JamPlay isn’t afraid to connect the instructor with students, ensuring that any sort of issues or opinions that the student has are directly relayed to the instructors. This sort of transparency is appreciated — especially when so many other guitar playing platforms tend to be very impersonal and never actually directly communicate with the students. While Guitar Tricks offer something similar with its full access features, they are subject to additional charges. With JamPlay, there is no gate-keeping or a money wall that prevents students from directly speaking with the instructors during a Q&A session.

Even though JamPlay is a newer platform, they have been able to garner a very intimate sense of community. This is largely due to the dedication to transparency and making sure the students aren’t required to jump through a bureaucracy just to speak to a live person.

Due to the dedication to community building and transparency, as well as genre-specific lessons, JamPlay beats out Guitar Tricks.

JamPlay and Guitar Tricks both cost $19.95 a month. To save $39.60, JamPlay offers quarterly subscriptions of $49.95 or a one-year membership for $159.95

Which One Service Is The Best?

While both platforms cater to all playing styles, Guitar Tricks is dinged due to it not offering comprehensive lessons for different styles, in particular, instructional time for aspiring bassists.

Jamplay comes on top due to their breadth of lessons, putting a spotlight on the significance of community, and having a quarterly subscription for those who want to have an intensive trial with Jamplay before paying for a yearly prescription.

Jamplay is also a superior product due to:

In-depth guitar lessons. Jamplay is an innovative online learning course with designated “phases”. Phase 1 represents the beginner stages. Here, students learn the basics of playing the guitar, including posturing and rudimentary chords. These lessons are meant to set the foundation. This lesson is designed for complete beginners who have never played the guitar – or an instrument.

Phase 2 picks up genre-specific lessons. A spotlight is placed on the skills and techniques within a specific genre. If you have experience with the guitar, then you can start with Phase 2 and skip Phase 1.

Phase 3 is where Jamplay shines in connecting students with teachers – you will be able to request songs from teachers and they will teach you how to play them. Now that you have the foundation, Phase 3 puts the power back in the students by enabling them to pick a song and learning how to play it with confidence.

Jamplay is not just online courses for guitar enthusiasts, it’s a whole system that has been a steadfast leader in the industry.

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