GETTING STARTED ON GUITAR
by Janice Morris with
Trevor Gabriel, guitar faculty
other instruments, student guitars are fairly inexpensive (under $130.00),
so it usually best to purchase a guitar for your child. Here are
some tips as you begin the journey:
SIZE: Make sure it is the right size: Until students are the size of a child 12 years of age or older, it is likely they will need a reduced-size instrument. the best way to determine the correct size is to visit a guitar or instrument store (see below) and have your child sized by an educated guitarist. Once the proper size has been determined, you may feel more comfortable finding a used instrument or purchasing online.Approximate guitar sizing: 1/4 size: ages 4-6; 1/2 size: ages 6-9; 3/4 size: ages 9-12 (NOTE: This varies by guitar and the size of the child.)
TYPE: Acoustic (non-electric) guitars with nylon strings are best for most beginners. This is because before the callouses are developed, steel strings cause young fingers to be more tender and therefore discouraging.
NOTE: Only the three highest strings of the guitar are 100% nylon. The lower three strings are nylon wrapped with metal to help maintain the pitch.
RENT OR BUY?
This depends on several factors:
- Size of child: Most stores do not rent smaller sized guitars. If your child is starting very young (and small), it might make sense to rent your instrument and trade up as he grows in size., but finding a place to do that would be challenging.
Apply rent to purchase? If you do rent, look for stores that allow you to apply your rent toward the purchase of an instrument. Stores that rent-to-own usually average out the cost of the instrument over 2 years until you would own it.
- Cost: You can purchase a decent (but not fancy) student size guitar for under $100.00, so usually buying it makes more sense. Keep in mind that you may purchase a less expensive guitar but it might be more challenging for your student to play. For example, if the strings sit high off the fingerboard, the student will have more difficulty pressing the strings down to play certain chords.
Approximate rent: The rent for a guitar will usually be based on the value of the instrument, but may start at a minimum of $25.00-$30.00 per month.
GUITARS: Faculty member Trevor G. suggests the Cordoba Student Guitar (about $130.00)
STORES: In the Saratoga/Sunnyvale Area
- West Valley Music: 262 Castro
St, Mountain View, CA 94041;
- Starving Musicians: 3939
Stevens Creek Blvd, Santa Clara, CA 95051;
- Guitar Center: 3677 Stevens
Creek Blvd, Santa Clara, CA 95051:
- Crossroads Music: 10564 S De
Anza Blvd, Cupertino, CA 95014;
STORES: In the San Jose Area
- Park Avenue Music: 1717 Park Avenue, San Jose, CA 95126; Tel: (408) 279-5100
- Guitar Showcase: 3090 S Bascom
Ave, San Jose, CA 95124;
- Music Village: 2971 Union Ave San Jose, CA 95124 (408) 377-2504; or 5885 Santa Teresa Blvd San Jose, CA 95123 (408) 629-1812
Last Modified: 2014.10.28T10:17:22
Actual Customer Testimonials:
"We have recommended to many of our friends. We love the place. It has totally helped our daughter to not only know the notes but to truly have fun with them! We love the teacher(s) and wish them all the very best. - " -- Happy parents
"Our daughter, Melissa, loves her music class, and she looks forward to the recitals. She's made friends and become more confident. We'd recommend the Music Place to anyone. -- Melissa's parents, Kathy & Matt, Los Gatos" .
I tell everyone who will listen about the amazing introduction to music that our daughter is getting with the Music Place. People are always amazed when a 3-year old explains that she played an oboe last week and is going to play a piccolo next week! Most importantly, our daughter can't wait for music class & asks to go every day. -- The Pace Family