A Few Definitions Before Getting Started
Before even getting started with how long it takes to learn guitar, it’s handy to define what “learn guitar” means in your eyes.
If “Point A” is never having touched a guitar, and “Point B” is playing like Eddie Van Halen, then it might take you 10 years or more!
But, if “Point A” is never having touched a guitar, and “Point B” is being a humble intermediate, who can strum along to your favorite songs and play riffs, then 12 weeks is a reasonable estimate.
Keep reading, and you’ll find out how that’s possible! And how long it would take to graduate to other levels of the guitar.
An Introduction: How Long It Takes to Learn Guitar
Curious how long it’ll take you to learn guitar? (To become an intermediate.)
Well, it’ll depend on 3 key factors: your curiosity, your lesson plan, and your mentorship.
If you’ve got each factor topped up in your system, you’ll dart past players who have already started playing guitar! If you don’t, you might get stuck in a rut.
Growth Factor #1
Curiosity & open-mindedness to learn guitar
Growth Factor #2
Quality of your lesson plan roadmap
Growth Factor #3
Mentorship from a guitar teacher
Inspire Yourself, Find a Good Roadmap, & Ask for Help
Curiosity: Try blocking out 11 minutes per day where you watch amazing guitarists like Hendrix, Segovia, Eddie Van Halen, and Danny Gatton to energize your curiosity.
Roadmaps & Mentorship: Look into getting private lessons, or starting a great online course for an awesome lesson plan and roadmap.
Hint: you can find affordable private lessons here, and this Learn Guitars course is one of the best online courses you’ll find!
With Those, You Can Learn Guitar Within 12 Weeks
If that sounds a bit weirdly quick, know that it’s very normal for kids, who start learning guitar in a music studio, to become intermediates within 12 weeks.
And it’s the same for people of all ages.
If you doubt that, maybe it’s because, for older folks (aka adults), it’s not easy to schedule weekly private lessons, nor is it easy to find time to practice.
But it’s also not hard!
As a tip, for practice, try adding more time to your day by subtracting stuff like TV. Even 30 minutes per day would be great.
And then, as a tip for lessons, if you can’t do weekly private lessons, try this site’s online guitar course, where you can learn whether you’re in Moscow or Miami, and at 11am or 11pm.
Still wondering how long it’ll take you to learn guitar?
This online course is built exactly to answer that question. You’ll go from a beginner to an intermediate within 12 weeks; so, it’ll take you 12 weeks to learn guitar!
If that sounds crazy, know that your 12 Week Program is already built out for you. Just check it out below. This is the curriculum which this course uses,
- Within 1 week
- Anatomy of the guitar
- Fundamentals of technique
- Single string song
- Within 2 weeks
- You’ll learn to play 2 strings simultaneously, alongside more practice songs
- Within 3 weeks
- You’ll learn your first 3 string chords, alongside more songs
- Within 4 weeks
- Understanding of the top 5 of 6 strings
- Play full open position chords
- Within 6 weeks
- You’ll be learning all the basic open position chords
- Starting to strum and play songs of your choosing
- Within 8 weeks
- Popular guitar riffs and passages
- Beginning to play movable barre chords
- Within 10 weeks
- Beginning to learn the pentatonic scale and improvisation
- Learning more songs
- Within 12 weeks
- Feeling fairly comfortable to jam with friends
- Graduation to being an “intermediate” guitarist
You can see that it’s not just a bunch of smoke; this course has specific timelines, like some kind of work deliverable, that you’ve got to meet, and — if you meet it — then your reward is being an intermediate guitarist.
How You Can Learn the Guitar Within 12 Weeks
Within those 12 weeks of learning guitar, you’ll touch on the fundamentals in a nicely logical way,
- Learning each string, starting from thinnest and moving towards thickest, steadily accumulating knowledge about each string.
- Gaining a sense of single-note playing and chordal playing
- As you progress to the 2nd string, 3rd string, and so on, you’ll understand how to combine the strings to play multiple notes at the same time
- Gazing forward at what you’ll next work on as an intermediate guitarist, including barre chords and scales
- Practicing these concepts in a musical way, by learning songs throughout the regimen, so it’s not overly abstract
All too often, beginner guitar courses start by teaching chords, or assume you know certain strings already.
That can have you stuck in pitfalls, which you might not get out of!
This course is built to be pitfall free; each fundamental is covered adequately, so you can comfortably graduate from the course, being able to strum along with your favorite songs, and crack out single-note riffs too!
On Alternative Options for Absolute Beginners
This Learn Guitars course helps fill a void which is often missing for absolute beginners.
Not a lot of people realize that platforms like TrueFire and Guitar Tricks assume you already know the basics of guitar.
For example, a main draw of Guitar Tricks is its song lesson library, where you can learn hits from the 60s all the way to now; but without some base knowledge of how to play, you can’t really take advantage of the platform.
That’s where this course aims to fill the gap, giving you that intermediate knowledge so you can “self-learn” with other platforms much more easily.
How Long Does it Take to Become an Advanced or Pro
This article is mainly focused on how to move from beginner to intermediate, but here’s a quick note on how long it takes to reach the next levels of the guitar.
A Steeper & Steeper Climb
Ever noticed that the more you learn a subject, the longer it takes to keep learning?
For instance, it might take just a 3 month bootcamp to learn some basic coding, but it can take 10 years to get a pHD in computer science!
So, if you’re looking to become an Advanced, Pro, or Innovator guitarist, know that each milestone usually takes more and more time.
a. Advanced Guitarist
Let’s say an Advanced guitarist is someone who feels comfortable playing most songs they set out to learn, they’re starting to be able to express themselves fairly well by improvising, and their dexterity with the instrument is reasonable.
Then, you can truly become an Advanced guitarist within 12 months.
Undoubtedly, your speed in progressing to being an Advanced player depends on your curiosity, roadmap, and mentorship, but 12 months is quite reasonable to become an Advanced player.
If you’ve got questions about becoming an Advanced player, feel free to drop a message.
b. Pro Guitarist
Next, if you want to join a band, or be a session musician, you may wonder how long it’ll take.
These are undoubtedly rough estimates, but you can reasonably set your goals on joining a gigging band within even 1 year of never having touched the guitar, a studio guitarist within 5-10 years, and teaching at a college within 10-20 years.
When it comes to joining a professional band, it really depends on your genre of music. If you’re aiming to play Ramones-style power chords, you can get to that level within 6-12 months. If your role in the band is to play like Eddie Van Halen, that might take more like 2-5 years.
Becoming a session musician, your playing will require more genre versatility, and you’ll probably need to learn to read musical notation. Plus, you’ll need that professional studio knack to get the music perfect on the first take. With that being the case, being a session musician can take up to 5-10 years or more.
To teach at a college, you’ll probably need at least a Masters degree or pHD in music, plus you’ll probably need to be a skilled specialist at one or more genres of music. Due to the schooling and professional experience needed, this can take 10-20 years or more.
c. Innovator Guitarist
Now, to become a true innovator of the guitar, this is really a wild-card and probably impossible to say, especially since innovators tend to perhaps be “chosen”.
Plus, the mindset to be an innovator often takes more than just being a subjectmaster, demanding someone with forward-thinking views all-around of life, morality, conscientiousness, and other subjects.
But, as one case study on another instrument, the great Charlie Parker became a musical innovator of the highest level within about 9 years. But, for part of that period, he legendarily practiced more up to 15 hours a day!
To take another example, Jimi Hendrix got his first guitar in 1957, and recorded his landmark album in 1967, about 10 years later. Again, he practiced voraciously, often taking his guitar even into the movie theatre, so he could keep playing.
So, extremely roughly speaking, you can perhaps say that it takes about 9-10 years or more to become an innovator on the guitar.
Don’t Worry About These Levels For Now!
But don’t burden your mind with the task of becoming an innovator (or even pro) guitarist just yet!
You didn’t burden your mind with the task of having a Michelin-star restaurant the moment you first cooked scrambled eggs.
Instead, focus on your next step, and activate your tunnel vision so that’s solely what you set your mind upon.
Get Started With Learning Guitar Within 12 Weeks
If you’ve wondered how long it takes to learn guitar, with a desire to graduate from being an absolute beginner to an intermediate, then know that it takes about 12 weeks.
To become an intermediate guitarist, 12 weeks from today, continue with this course by clicking the “Next Lesson” button below.