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GuitaroJam Learning Centre > Guitar Lesson Reviews



Guitar Lesson Reviews



There's certainly no shortage of guitar learning materials available on the internet - the hard part is knowing which is the right website, or which techniques and learning methods will work for your guitar playing. 

The internet and your computer are a great means of learning to play guitar in the privacy of your home.  You should consider your preferred learning style - most people can benefit from both written and audio material.  Some others progress best with solely written material.  Whatever your preference, each of the sites presented has something to offer.

The lessons outlined below feature just some of the valuable guitar learning material available through this website.  We hope they will assist with your decision.  Here's to your success!



Guitar Made Simple

Guitar Made Simple is a brilliant guitar instruction package from Chris Standring especially designed for beginning guitar players and those with gaps in their skills what want to improve.  Check out our Guitar Made Simple review to find out more.


Guitar Tips

"Guitar Secrets Revealed" (Guitar Tips) is a comprehensive educational program from Chris Elmore that works well for beginners starting out.  The Elmore Music online guitar educational website is also a valuable resource for improving the skill level of the advanced player.  Check our Guitar Tips review to find out more.


Guitar Alliance

The Guitar Alliance program has a wide range of topics with very user friendly and easily understood explanation of concepts. It caters for both the beginning player as well as advanced guitarists.

As a beginner myself, I have found Guitar Alliance offers plenty of information for the brand new player.  Topics such as how to properly hold the guitar, basic strumming techniques, simple chord instruction and basic scales are all covered. So too is the simple maintenance of the instrument, including tuning, string changes, and even cleaning your instrument. In addition to this valuable "newbie" information, there is an extensive section called "Guitar 101" that advanced guitarists can find very helpful. It is here that even the most practiced and experienced players can appreciate new drills that will improve speed, theory and technical skill.

The Guitar Alliance emphasis on practice techniques helps members focus on what is important to a guitar player, and gives practical tips and ideas for practicing that can push a player for further levels of improvement.

I found that Guitar Alliance prides itself in making sure that ideas and concepts are explained in a clear, easy to understand manner. There are sound bits easily available throughout the site, which allows the player to hear the lesson being taught. Diagrams are well explained so that those reading them can easily understand what is being drawn.

For an additional charge you can get another program called Riff O Matic where you can hear and learn the main riffs of some of the most popular songs of the last 25-30 years. The program is very simple, with one click required to learn songs from all your favourite guitarists.

I have already personally taken advantage of the wide range of the Guitar Alliance information, and look forward to using it over and over as my guitar playing improves. I would highly recommend Guitar Alliance  to anyone that is interested in progressing with their musical abilities.  Visit Guitar Alliance to find out more.

Jean Littman




Review: "Play Jazz Guitar" Home Study CD

Music Gear Review By Chris Bereznay

I can offer one unique perspective in my experience with the Play Jazz Guitar home study course by Chris Standring. I've been playing guitar for close to 20 years. My interest started with, like probably many folks my age, wanting to play "Stairway to Heaven". Once I could fret a few notes and finger a few chords, though, my tastes leaned toward the popular music of the time - glam metal. I know, you might be laughing, but I'm being honest and I'm driving towards a point here.

As you mature as a guitarist, you might go through many different phases. You might actually put down that guitar for a few months or years, especially when you feel you've reached a plateau and you're either not willing, nor feel you're able to commit the time and energy it takes to get to the next level.

Eventually you'll go through a phase when you start enjoying the more subtle nuances of a fine acoustic guitar or a Fender Strat through a clean tube amp. You start exploring more chord voicings and progressions. Your tastes are changing, and although it might make you feel older, you somehow manage to explain it as "more sophisticated" taste in music. If this sounds like you, shoot me an e-mail, I'd love to have someone tell me I'm not crazy.

Don't get me wrong, though. The love of jazz guitar, the chords, the melodies and the progressions comes to some at an early age. For a lot of us, though, it comes with maturity. You've been playing for a while and you're thankful that you made the decision at an early age to take up the guitar. Now you're looking to improve your skill. Whether it's for relaxation, performance or recording's sake - you're interested in learning Jazz Guitar.

Enter "Play What You Hear" from Chris Standring. Chris has been an internationally acclaimed hit recording guitarist and now, an incredible teacher. Play Jazz Guitar is a 2 CD-ROM home study course that will take you on an incredible journey of the theory and composition of jazz guitar. Imagine being able to get 15 years worth of professional instruction, for around fifty bucks! That's what you'll get - and more with this course from Chris Standring.

The two books (CD's) cover:

Book One
In this first book you will learn about:

Melody * The major scale and its use * Variations on the major scale/simple melodic patterns * The diatonic scale - analysis * Diatonic sounds and their relative chords * Seeing is conceiving (visualizing harmony) * More melodic patterns * Diatonic sounds through moving key centers

Harmony * Embellishing chordal accompaniment * Voice leading and chordal accompaniment

Book Two
In this second book you will learn about:

Playing over changes * The linear method and changes * Step-wise resolution: be-bop * b9 resolutions * The diminished scale and linear exercises * Diminished patterns for dominant b9 chords * More b9 resolutions * The back-cycling turnaround * b9 resolutions for back-cycling * The relative minor turnaround * The melodic minor scale and b5 resolutions * Melodic minor patterns for dominant b5 chords * b5 resolutions * #5#9 resolutions * The blues scale * Recognizing triads

Phrase development * Motifs, themes and variations * Sequential 2, 5 resolutions * Tritone substitution * Sequential tritone resolutions * And now to the music - example jazz standard sequences

Bottom Line:

For under $50, you get a wealth of information here designed to enlighten and train you on the methods and theories surrounding Jazz Guitar. I'm currently enjoying this fresh approach and Chris has done an incredible job of presenting the materials in an easy to use and professional format.

There are a few things to keep in mind here, though. For those of you that have never learned to read music, this approach may be a little challenging. Chris does not make use of guitar tablature in this package. Fortunately my first instrument was the piano, so reading the notation has not been a problem. If you're someone who has grown up with the guitar magazines, though, you're going to have to be a little more studious in your approach. This might, however, be the perfect reason for you to learn how to read standard notation. If you're really interested in taking your abilities to the next level - you simply must.  Click here to find out more.



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