What guitar????

(35 Posts)
JustAShopGirl Thu 17-Jul-14 10:18:51

DD(13) plays piano - just got her grade 4 and wants to take up guitar, just wondering if there is any knowledge out there -

I know ideally she would like to play electric guitar as she is into Rock music.. but didn't know what sort of thing to get really, is there anything in particular I should be looking at?

Should we get an acoustic to start? Is it very different? I am clueless..

Apparently she plays acoustic (well, she informs me they have 5 with a variety of missing strings!?! hence wanting her own) at school and has learned to play Tab notation.

Help...

TheFantasticMrsFox Thu 17-Jul-14 17:21:04

DS (much to his grave dismay) was advised to start with an acoustic as it's better for technique- akin to drivers who learn in a manual being able to drive an automatic but not vice versa IYSWIM. He dreamed and schemed of an electric from the very first day he started lessons but we managed to hold out for a year.
The accoustic was unceremoniously abandoned when he got an electric guitar and is now destined only to be wheeled out for holidays and visits to GP's who will not tolerate an amplifier in the house.

JustAShopGirl Fri 18-Jul-14 08:28:04

grin - that is exactly the sort of thing I could see happening here so we are umming and ahhhing over electric straight away - because she is not interested in taking it up as "a second instrument" just as a fun thing to do with friends.

KittiesInsane Fri 18-Jul-14 08:33:41

Oh god.

In DS's case, the answer appears to be 'all the guitars he can lay his hands on'. What is it with teenagers and guitars?

He has:
decent acoustic inherited from a relative who bought it in Spain
cheap pawn-shop acoustic for trugging to school
cheap electric Honda Jazzcat, bought from his paper round money
apparently rather good semi-acoustic Aria (i.e. you can hear it without the amp because it's a bit hollow, but it's much louder with the amp)
and a rather fine collection of ukuleles

JustAShopGirl Fri 18-Jul-14 08:49:44

ooooooo - there's an idea - could get her a cheap acoustic to get started and get her to "earn" the electric

too many choices...

TheFantasticMrsFox Fri 18-Jul-14 09:55:05

DS is the same kittie but is only 10 hmm
We are decorating his bedroom over the summer and his main request is moustache wallpaper and "at least 4 guitar wall hooks" confused grin

taxi4ballet Sat 19-Jul-14 15:37:11

If she has small hands she might do better with electric, as they have a narrower neck.

Will she be wanting to do exams? Could be worth checking with local teachers and find out what is available. Some will only teach classical acoustic at first, and 'follow the book', and won't teach guitar tab at all. Others (like my DH) will teach whatever style they want to learn, especially for teenagers and adults.

Nocturne123 Sat 19-Jul-14 15:42:08

I wish I had learnt on the acoustic first . Although it may cut her fingers to ribbons , after learning acoustic she'll find electric so easy !

The problem with electric first is that it's so tempting to just learn bar chords with an amp and miss out on finger picking ! I spent my time channelling avril lavigne with about 4 chords blush

Good luck to her smile

taxi4ballet Sat 19-Jul-14 22:34:06

Just asked guitar teacher DH -

He says "If she's keen on rock then go electric. Yamaha Pacifica, Fender Squier, or similar but you can pick up bargains of other makes privately".

JustAShopGirl Sun 20-Jul-14 09:36:32

thanks all -

Nocturne123 - that is exactly the sort of thing she wants to do... Avril Lavigne, Blink182, Black Veil Brides...

she won't be wanting exams - is having enough of that stress in piano (as we all are!!!)

so it looks like electric here we come..

CanaryYellow Sun 20-Jul-14 20:33:35

My DS started on a cheap(ish) electric guitar, but also had an acoustic. Now we have quite a collection. The electric wins with him every time, I prefer the sound of an acoustic. When we realised he was taking it seriously, we treated him to an Ibanez Prestige which has a wizard neck - slimmer than normal guitars so ideal for small hands.

If she's into rock then I know you said she doesn't want exams but she could take a look at the RockSchool grades. You might find she'd be quite enthusiastic about these.

Mistigri Tue 22-Jul-14 21:16:24

What sort of music does she want to play? Do you have a tight budget? If your budget is tight get an electric, you get more bangs for your bucks. A good acoustic, properly set up so it is pleasant and easy to play, is going to set you back a bit of money. Electric guitars are also easier to play; the flip side is that if your learn on an acoustic, the transition to electric is very easy.

You need to think about size too - if she is petite you may want a smaller instrument (if acoustic) and if her hands are small you need to think about the width of the fretboard. My petite 13 year old has a Taylor GS mini (a good quality "travel"/parlour guitar which is about the same size as a 3/4 classical, though with a narrower neck of course) and a Strat, both of which are good instruments that she will keep for years and which are comfortable for her to play.

Mistigri Tue 22-Jul-14 21:21:55

And you probably should be hoping she doesn't get into it seriously, because there is apparently no such thing as "too many guitars" ... DD wants a bass for Christmas and is saving for a semi-hollow electric guitar ...

mindyourown1 Tue 22-Jul-14 21:22:03

My daughter started with a Fender Squier, then got a half decent acoustic, and has now upgraded to a Telecaster. There seems to be no such thing as too many guitars. She did already have a small basic acoustic which was only about £30 I think years ago. I upgraded her amp too last year to one with more oomph and effects. She always replaces the strings to good ones too.

This is a very good starter electric

www.gak.co.uk/en/squier-stop-dreaming-start-playing-set-affinity-series-strat-with-fender-frontman-10g-amp-black/67502

mindyourown1 Tue 22-Jul-14 21:22:39

Ha - Mist - you and I crossposted!

Mistigri Tue 22-Jul-14 21:27:29

Lol - nice to see I'm not the only one! At least electric guitars are reasonable and you can add amps and other lot gradually. DD was looking at a new acoustic for performances (in order to get a bigger sound) but the prices are :-O

JustAShopGirl Tue 22-Jul-14 21:29:20

Rock music is all she wants to play (at the moment) - Starting with stuff like Smells Like teen spirit, Smoke on the water BIG chord type things, and Green Day/Black Veil Brides/Linkin Park - her favourite bands of the moment.

She is not petite - she is 13 and 5ft6 and plays piano so is used to a full octave stretch hands wise.

Budget probably stretches to about £250

mindyourown1 Tue 22-Jul-14 21:31:47

Will you be paying for lessons too? There is so much on the internet it is possible to teach yourself. Guitar tabs are easily found for anything. Apps for tuning for iPod or phone are free. I think of the hours worth of use it works out a cheap and fabulous hobby.

JustAShopGirl Tue 22-Jul-14 21:31:52

didn't see all the new posts... that link looks really good... thanks.

mindyourown1 Tue 22-Jul-14 21:33:49

It is a basic guitar, but Fender won't put their name to anything which isn't good. It is a great starter guitar, and for a teen it looks great too, which is of course v important!

That is a really good website - they offer loads of advice and next day delivery. I can't fault them really.

Start acoustic, a Jumbo size (smaller than a Dreadnaught). You can get a nice basic one for between £80-100. Anything less will be cheap and nasty, sound poor, play badly and not stay in tune.

Provided she makes progress with chords and rhythm, a move to electric should happen after about a year. Then, learning from tab books, internet videos and just listening to her music will see her right.

The important thing is practise. There is no such thing as easy, and if she doesn't practice, she'll hit a wall and never progress. Once you have a guitar the next thing you need is determined trying and trying. Otherwise it's never going to happen.smile

JustAShopGirl Tue 22-Jul-14 21:34:21

No not paying for lessons, she has learned to read TAB at school, and has had the rudimentary stuff shown by friends and teachers.

The school guitars are rubbish though, so she wants something to have a go on at home.

Mistigri Tue 22-Jul-14 21:34:27

Electric then IMO.

The Yamaha Pacifica is supposed to be the best value bottom end guitar.

The only downside of electric guitars is that they are a bit more of a fuss to get out and play - my dd uses her acoustic a lot because she can play it in bed. This is very important at 13 ;)

Mistigri Tue 22-Jul-14 21:37:00

You don't need lessons at first as there are so many resources on the internet - justinguitar.com has far and away the best beginner course and you can download tabs for almost anything from ultimate-guitar.

JustAShopGirl Tue 22-Jul-14 21:37:24

grin Misti... yep I need to consider the playing it in bed thing too... already starting to find nighttime and lunchtime are merging...

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