13 Reasons Beginner Guitarists Need To Play Along With Recorded Songs NOW

I want you to take a second to picture yourself playing on stage with your favourite band…

The bright lights, the sea of sounds, the screaming fans…

Imagine rocking out and playing the classics with legends like Hendrix, Gilmour, Cobain, Lennon….

What a great feeling that would be, right?

After 20+ years of playing the guitar, I can honestly say…

There is nothing more fun and more beneficial than playing with other musicians.

Whether live or recorded.

To this day, my most cherished memories are when I was touring with my band The Envy

Opening for bands like KISS across North America.

The adrenaline rush is something I can STILL feel almost 10 years later!

In this article, I want to make a case for playing your guitar with other musicians…

Not just because it’s fun, but because of how CRUCIAL it is for your development as a guitarist.

However, what if you don’t have the luxury of playing with other live musicians?

Not to worry…

You don’t have to go out and find a local group of musicians with silly costumes (like in the cover image) to get the same experience I’m talking about…

You can achieve similar results TODAY by playing along with your favourite recordings…

Allowing you to play along with the greats in the comfort of your own home.

(if you’re in a hurry and want to skip to the list of how and why to play with recorded songs, click here)


THE SAD AND SHOCKING TRUTH (aka ‘THE BEGINNER GUITAR TRAP’)

I bet you’d be surprised to know that of all the guitarists who come to work with me…

The majority have NEVER once tried playing along with their favourite recordings.

Even when they are specifically learning how to play that song.

It actually boggles my mind that playing along with the recording from Day 1 ISN’T the first thing they want to do.

Why prevent yourself from experiencing the thrill and joy of playing the guitar…

With the same recordings that likely inspired you to start playing guitar in the first place???

Whenever I ask them why they haven’t yet tried to play along with the recording…

The main answer I get is “I didn’t think I was ready.”

easy guitar songs

Almost like they don’t deserve to play along with the track.

As if they weren’t worthy and had to hit a certain level of expertise first.

I call this “The Beginner Trap” because it can hinder progress for months…maybe years.


LEARNING GUITAR ONLINE IS EASY, RIGHT? WRONG!

I don’t blame my clients for falling into the Beginner Trap.

Because it’s hard to know what to do when you’re teaching yourself to play guitar.

Unfortunately, the video tutorials you watch online can feel overwhelming and not produce ANY results.

Even the so-called “easy” ones.

A lot of the time it’s just a video of a guy playing a song for you, but not actually TEACHING you how to play the song yourself.

So as a Beginner you might get stuck at the starting line…

Before you even start the race.

And that’s why today, I want to share with you my process for helping you win the race.

Because the majority of your experience on guitar will involve playing along with other instruments…

…whether live or recorded.

“The majority of guitar playing involves playing along with OTHER instruments.”

Does this sound like your experience so far?

Like nothing you try on guitar is producing ANY musical result?

If so, then read on because I’m going to set the record straight on why you should instead be playing along with recordings from Day 1.

Because if you don’t embrace the power of Play Alongs, you might end up frustrated, tired, and eventually quit playing guitar altogether.

In other words, you might end up like this guy…


13 REASONS WHY YOU NEED TO BE PLAYING ALONG WITH RECORDED SONGS TODAY…

There are many reasons why playing along with your favourite recordings is so crucial to your development as a guitarist and I’ve listed the top 13 below:

  1. Playing along will greatly improve your timing since the song will force you to lock in with it. If you don’t, mistakes will be very obvious, so it’s easy to course correct.
  2. Playing along will increase your confidence and will lead to your first BIG breakthrough on guitar that will prove to yourself that YOU CAN DO THIS! Especially when you finish playing along with your first song, your fifth, your fiftieth…etc.
  3. Playing along will teach you how to gel with other instruments (both timing and volume). Remember, guitar is just ONE piece of the puzzle, so it’s important to learn how to blend with the drummer, bassist, singer, etc. Get the right volume and you’ll slot into the mix perfectly.
  4.  Playing along gets you out of your head and into a state of flow. For beginners, this is huge since your inner voice will be very active and very distracting. When you’re playing along, there is no time for mind chatter.
  5. Playing along helps to re-program your reflex to stop after making mistakes. Since the song isn’t going to wait for you, it will force you to keep playing. I can’t tell you how many times this one saved me when performing live!
  6. Playing along with recorded songs breaks you out of the exercise hamster wheel where you are practising something that doesn’t sound music and you have no idea how to use. Don’t practice things you think you should be practicing….play along with records and have fun.
  7. Playing along builds momentum for tackling more songs in the future. Eventually, you’ll have a huge song list to play.
  8. Play along helps you build a sizeable song library to fall back on when you hit obstacles in the future with more complex techniques. Playing along gives you a much needed escape.
  9. Playing along with records gives you immediate feedback on the progress you’re making because your playing will either sound good with the recording or it won’t (playing on your own won’t give you that kind of feedback).
  10. Playing along will give you a sharpened awareness as a musician; understanding that there is more to a song than your part. You will start to navigate music in a holistic way and you will know the exact function of your guitar part and how it fits with the other instruments.
  11. Playing along with recordings will impress your friends…even when you are playing easier guitar songs. Get them to sing along….they’ll love it!
  12. Playing along with recordings is the best way to prep for playing with LIVE musicians – this should actually be first on the list because unless you’re a solo instrumental guitarist, the guitar is meant to be played with other instruments…even if it’s your voice (so if you’re planning on starting or joining a band, this is a MUST).
  13. Most of all, playing along with your favourite recordings is fun…making you feel like you’ve been hired as an additional member of the band and nothing will make practicing more rewarding than that.

I see these BIG results time and time again when my clients start playing along with recordings….even after the first time.

After playing along with a record just once, I’m sure you’ll never practice the same way again.


WHAT OBSTACLES YOU’LL PROBABLY RUN INTO (EVEN WITH ‘EASY SONGS’)…

Ok, so now you’re probably eager to load up one of your favourite songs on Spotify, iTunes, or YouTube and start playing along.

And if you do, you might find it to be A LOT harder than you thought.

Why is that?

Well, there are actually a few reasons:

  • if you’re like most beginner guitarists, you’ll try playing the EXACT guitar part you hear on the original recording, which consists of guitar chords and strumming patterns that are usually too complex at this stage of the game
  • if you rely on this “play what you hear” approach from Day 1, you will stall your progress by spending too much time practicing techniques and coordinations that leave you weeks away from playing along with recordings and finishing the song
  • To add insult to injury, a lot of online tutorials that are teach “easy guitar songs” or “acoustic guitar songs for beginners” can still be too hard to play for most Beginner guitarists…even though they seem like easy songs to learn on guitar.

SO WHAT CAN YOU DO ABOUT IT?

So if you’re going to play along with original recordings today, you’re going to need a SMARTER APPROACH to guitar.

It might seem counter-intuitive, but you’ll make more progress if you start with the simplest possible version of the song FIRST and then refine it later.

I’m talking so simple that you can play along with the recording in one or two sittings.

(where the majority of the practice is locking in with the recording…..because the actual guitar part is so easy)

This is the UNFAIR ADVANTAGE I want to give you.

I want you to approach songs where the moves are so easy, your mind knows them inside out.

You’ll be amazed at how quickly your fingers will cooperate when you fully understand something in your mind.

And how everything works beautifully when you keep things simple.

That’s the core philosophy here at RockstarMind.com

“Keep It Super Simple” (The K.I.S.S. Principle)


NEXT STEPS

So what’s the first step to playing along with your favourite recordings..

And starting a predictable path to success on guitar?

Here’s my suggestion:

If you would like to develop a solid foundation for playing along with recordings

And building up a massive library of songs to play on guitar starting today…

…without having to learn ANY complicated chord changes

Or practice for hours on end with little to no results…

Then check out this FREE guide I put together to get you started…

(click the image above to download your copy)

It includes everything you need to get your first BIG WIN on guitar…

So you can start sounding and feeling like a confident guitar player!

The best part is it will only take you about 5 minutes to see results.

Thousands of songs need clean switches between G, C, and D, but switching between them can be challenging for Beginner Guitarists.

That’s exactly why this FREE guide was designed to help you solve that problem in under 5 minutes, so you can start playing from a list of thousands of songs on guitar.

I can’t wait to help you get massive results on guitar this year!

 

To your success,

signatureSteveakaVØID

About Steve (aka VØID)

Steve (aka VØID) is the owner and head Guitar Coach at Rockstar Mind. He is a self-taught guitarist for 20 years and a professional guitarist & Major label recording artist for 10 years (touring the world opening for and performing with big name acts such as KISS, Hinder, Finger Eleven, and Our Lady Peace). Most importantly, he has been coaching struggling guitarists for over 15 years to quickly overcome their playing obstacles and play their favourite songs on guitar. After his father was diagnosed with Stage IV Colon Cancer, Steve put his music career on hold to become his primary caregiver. He created a fundraising initiative called VØID Cancer where he uses proceeds from every sale to create new programs for patients and caregiver. All in his father's honour. Connect with Steve (aka VØID) on Facebook.
About The Author

Steve (aka VØID)

Steve (aka VØID) is the owner and head Guitar Coach at Rockstar Mind. He is a self-taught guitarist for 20 years and a professional guitarist & Major label recording artist for 10 years (touring the world opening for and performing with big name acts such as KISS, Hinder, Finger Eleven, and Our Lady Peace). Most importantly, he has been coaching struggling guitarists for over 15 years to quickly overcome their playing obstacles and play their favourite songs on guitar. After his father was diagnosed with Stage IV Colon Cancer, Steve put his music career on hold to become his primary caregiver. He created a fundraising initiative called VØID Cancer where he uses proceeds from every sale to create new programs for patients and caregiver. All in his father's honour. Connect with Steve (aka VØID) on Facebook.