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Guitar Tricks Review

Jan 11, 2008
Where do I start with this review? Guitar Tricks is the oldest video guitar lessons website on the net, online since 1998, when it took over an hour to download anything of size. Long-time guitarist Jon Broderick started the site struggling to find accurate tabs and good information about playing guitar.

Today Guitar Tricks is the mecca of guitar lesson sites with over 3,000 video lessons for $10.95 a month. The lessons are taught by absolute experts, professionals who put food on the table by playing guitar. I find the techniques and tricks they teach to be unique and rare.

You don't find the same old, "This is how to play the Am Pentatonic Scale, this is how to play the C chord..." at Guitar Tricks. You find this with the absolute beginner material, but what impresses me with the site is that it's so diverse in skill level (beginner to expert), and you can browse lessons based on both genre (so diverse there's even Surf) and influences such as Eddie Van Halen for instance.

I have a drawer full of DVDs by all of the top pros like Frank Gambale, John Petrucci, and Michael Angelo Batio. All of which cost me roughly $500. Jon Broderick's site has videos that show you how to play the same sort of techniques I paid out the rear for. Valuable doesn't quite describe the site, more like invaluable.

I learn more in one day with the website than I used to in a month. The navigation is very fluent. The lessons are dense with great material.

But there are some downsides. While Guitar Tricks may be literally 10 times cheaper than even taking private lessons and great for progressing quickly, some of the older videos have bad lighting and not the greatest sound quality. For instance, there's a killer 8 to 10 video tapping lesson I'd like to tackle, but it must have been uploaded on the site carelessly near the beginning of the site. That said, there are tabs along with the videos that aren't booming with visual quality, so it's not too big of an issue.

Another downside we have is that there's not a private teacher correcting your technique every step of the way. Sites like JamPlay have less valuable content in my opinion, but may be better for the beginner because there's literally a staff of guitar teachers who can work with you one-on-one online. For the better guitarists, intermediates and advanced, there's no topping Guitar Tricks.

What makes Guitar Tricks so special for the advanced player, I think, is that they're are lessons that will take you to expert levels unlike any other site I've used. You can learn exact techniques that are used by heroes like Paul Gilbert, Joe Satriani, and Jimi Hendrix. That was all I needed to know before I became part of the site.

In comparison to YouTube videos, you can take all day filtering out the crummy videos taught by average guitarists in their bedrooms or you can use GT. For those of us who don't have but an hour a day to practice anymore, you surf one great lesson after another. It's remarkable what you learn in just one day.

That was my inside scoop and review of the site. Even with the couple negatives, I give it two thumbs up no doubt.
About the Author
Jason Parker is a guitar teacher at Atomic Guitarist , a resource of free guitar lesson videos on speed soloing and edgy, creative rock.
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