The guitar is one of a number of musical instruments that are very popular to learn all. Whether you are a child in school taking music lessons, or are an adult who simply wants to learn how to play, there is never a wrong time for learning an instrument.
Music is something that is made, played and loved by people all over the world, and is something that transcends language and borders. It’s a form of art that is pure and from the soul, and making music is an extremely positive and beautiful thing to do.
Learning the guitar
At school, one of the most popular musical instruments for kids to learn is the guitar. It’s an instrument that is relatively cheap to buy, is portable, and can be used to play a wide range of different music. Instruments such as the piano or cello are also popular, but they are much more restrictive in where they can be played.
The guitar is also popular for adults who want to learn an instrument. It’s more popular with men than women, though there are a lot of excellent female guitarists around the world, who are role models and heroes for many people.
The three main types of guitar are classical, acoustic and electric. The acoustic is the most popular guitar in the world and is what most people will pick up when learning to play the instrument.
Using backing tracks
One technique that a lot of adults use when learning the guitar is to use backing tracks. There are a number of advantages to learning this way, and in this article, we will take a look at some most popular methods of learning and also which are the most popular backing tracks to learn with.
Over the years, as technology has advanced, there have been a lot of ways in which you can learn the guitar, as well as any other instrument.
From VHS tapes with tutorials, to online guitar lessons such as those you can find at All Stringed, learning to play the guitar has gradually become a little easier over the years, simply due to the wide range of options available to students who are learning. If you do a quick search on YouTube, you’ll find hundreds of videos with various backing tracks of all of your favourite songs.
Before you start practicing with backing tracks, it’s a good idea to give them a listen first, so you can get a better idea of how the drums and bass are intertwining together, and how the rhythm guitar overlaps them.
Backing tracks have been in existence for a while and you could find audio cassettes and CDs of them that you could play along to while you learn. Today, everything is available digitally, and most online courses will use backing tracks as part of the lessons, and they create a much more complete playing experience, as though you are playing with a group, and not just along in a room somewhere.
There are backing tracks that are specific for certain instruments, and you can find them with all the instruments of a band playing, apart from the one that you are learning, such as the guitar, in this case.
Benefits of learning with backing tracks
One of the major advantages of learning to play the guitar with backing tracks is that you are able to listen to other parts of the music, such as the drums or bass as you play along. This is a very important aspect of learning an instrument, as listening is one of the most important skills you need when playing music.
It’s also important that it gives you the opportunity to be a little impulsive and to be spontaneous, which is something that every lead guitarist needs to be once in a while. You’ll need to know when to time your riffs or solos over the accompanying music, and using a backing track is the best way to practice this.
By having the other instruments playing as you do, it’s almost a preparation for you when you start to play music with other people in a band, and not just a recording. It gives you the opportunity to experience the same feelings and vibe as though you were part of a band.
Popular backing tracks to practice with
There are a number of popular tracks that a lot of people like to practice with. Of course, your own preferences in music will have a lot of influence in what and how you want to play.
Regardless of whether you want to play folk guitar like Bob Dylan or heavy metal like Metallica, the following tracks are good to practice along with as you continue learning and honing your playing skills.
Smells like Teen Spirit
The classic track by Nirvana is one of the most popular with younger guitar players and the power cords and thumping bass and drum make this a perfect one to practice with.
Smoke on the Water
One of the most famous tracks by Deep Purple, it’s one of the must learn songs when you start playing the guitar, and is a great way to get rocking. The opening riff is one of music’s most famous, and perfect for starting out when you are learning to play.
Sounds of Silence
One of the most famous tracks by Simon and Garfunkel, the guitar work of Paul Simon is something truly special and unique and this track is one that many people like to try and play along with.
House of the Rising Sun
Another classic from the 1960s performed by the Animals, and one that is still as popular today as it was 5+ decades ago. It’s slow rhythm makes it an ideal track to practice your finger work.
Some final words
Learning any musical instrument should be fun. If you aren’t enjoying yourself, then you might need to consider another hobby such as pottery, stamp collecting or building model cars. Music is part of us and something that comes from within.
Learning to play the guitar or any other musical instrument should be something that you have interest in and want to do, rather than having it forced on you. Playing music is almost therapeutic, and if you are able to learn to play an instrument, then you are certainly one of the lucky ones.