Slide Guitar For the Young and Talented!

I frequently start my youngest students on slide guitar. By tuning the instrument to an open chord (E major) it makes it possible to learn counting, rhythm, strumming, and singing-and-playing more quickly. This can be the difference between success and failure at a young age. Less left hand strength and dexterity is needed which makes it ideal for young players. With slide, it is possible to learn to play and sing many songs in a short amount of time. Generally if my student has been playing this way for two months they are ready to perform on the recital with confidence. After the student has become proficient playing this way I switch back to standard tuning and teach note reading and playing in the normal manner. They will already know how to read rhythms, strum the guitar, the sound of a chord, and dynamics. Also, the quality of the instrument is less important. If you have an old instrument with cracks in it and the neck is about to fall off, GREAT! It will make a fine slide guitar. As you can see in my video, my guitar is not a fine instrument. It was my first guitar and it was hardly playable when I got it. The action was terrible (and still is) but that’s fine if you’re playing slide. As long as it stays (mostly) in tune, it’s a slide guitar. You don’t even need all six strings!

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Guitar Lessons for younger students (5-9)