When I first picked up the guitar, the experience was both exciting and frustrating. I wanted to sound like Slash, and Nirvana, and Pennywise, but I could barely squeeze down the strings. I had to use one hand to stretch the fingers on the other hand into the shape of a chord. I didn’t even know how to tune the guitar, and I thought I was doing something wrong when my notes went dead above the 8th fret.
It was years before I learned that my journey into guitar playing could have been a whole lot easier if I’d known what to look for when I bought my guitar, or the benefits I could get from having a professional setup. A lot of people will tell you that it’s good to have a junker for a first guitar– that it makes you work harder to build up hand strength and value what you have when you move up to a real instrument. That may be true for some, but my view is that a guitar that’s easier to play makes learning easier and faster, which makes the guitar more fun. It’s a shame to think of all the people who have given up on the instrument because of their early struggles, not knowing that they could have progressed faster with a little professional help.
At Sick String I’m experienced working with beginning players of all ages, and take pride in helping new players learn about their instrument. I’ll gladly teach a beginner how to change strings and tune the guitar so it stays in tune. One of the most important things you can do for any guitar is give it a full setup, whether it’s new or well-used. Check out the details of what goes into a setup, and consider investing in making your first guitar as easy to learn on and as fun to play as possible.
I am also happy to help friends and family of beginners with advice about the purchase of their first guitar. Call or stop by any time to get a quick primer on what to look for when you go into the music store. You should never feel intimidated or ignorant when shopping for the perfect gift for your beginner. I even offer a discount if you bring that first guitar in for its first setup!