When it comes to learning the guitar online guitar tuition is a very good cost effective alternative to a guitar tutor.
When you take up a musical instrument you have to expect that you will spend some time learning how to play it. I don’t think that there are many musicians who can just pick up an instrument and have it licked from day 1. This is certainly true of the guitar. It is a fantastic instrument to play but it is also challenging if you don’t know what you are doing. This is where guitar tuition becomes important. There are a number of ways that you can learn to play the guitar. You can choose to employ the skills of a guitar tutor, learn from teach yourself books or go for an online course. The online option is becoming far more popular with many of us choosing the flexibility of an online provider.
The two biggest providers of online guitar courses are GuitarTricks and JamPlay and we often receive enquiries as to which is best. We therefore thought it would be a good idea to compare the relative merits of GuitarTricks and JamPlay.
First of all, before we consider the two providers, GuitarTricks and JamPay, it is worth considering why you would choose an online guitar course rather than a physical guitar tutor?
As far as we can see there are two main advantages of an online provider versus a guitar tutor and those are cost and flexibility.
Let’s take a look at cost.
In the UK a good guitar tutor can cost you anywhere between £10 to £25 per hour depending upon qualifications and level of experience. Therefore if you were looking to take 1 lesson per week it would cost you anywhere from £520 to £1300 per year. Both GuitarTricks and JamPlay are significantly cheaper than that as we will discuss in more detail further on in this article. There is therefore a good argument that using online guitar tuition will save you a bit of cash.
What about flexibility?
Well this is down to the fact that with an online provider you can take as many lessons as you like, whenever you want. Once you have paid your subscription you can be accessing the learning material 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, if you so choose. You can also pause the lesson, rewind or fast forward or choose to take a different lesson, in essence you can take it at your own pace. This flexibility feeds back into the cost benefit of an online guitar tuition provider making them a very attractive option.
Now that we have discussed the two main benefits let’s look at two of the biggest providers of online guitar tuition GuitarTricks and JamPlay.
First up is JamPlay.
JamPlay was founded in the US in 2006 by Jeff Booth, Chris Dawson and Kevin Wimmer. From humble beginnings JamPlay has rapidly grown to be one of the leading companies delivering learning media to guitar students around the globe. For those who are interested it is perhaps worth rattling off a few JamPlay statistics. So here goes…
JamPlay has taught over 460,000 guitarists since it went live in 2006.
There are currently 5326 guitar lessons all shot in HD.
On average JamPlay add 11 hours of new learning material every 30 days.
JamPlay currently has lessons taught by 80 professional guitarists with a combined 2924 years of guitar playing experience.
JamPlay tutors include Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal of Guns & Roses, Steve Stevens guitarist for Billy Idol and Mike Mushok from Staind. The list of top guitar players who teach for Jam Play is truly impressive.
With those kind of figures it is not surprising that JamPlay are one of the leading providers of online guitar tuition.
What about GuitarTricks, how does it compare to JamPlay?
Well GuitarTricks is the Grand-daddy of online guitar tuition. GuitarTricks was founded in 1998 and has been the market leader for online guitar tuition ever since. It is worth considering the statistics and seeing how they compare to JamPlay.
GuitarTricks has over 2.1 million members.
There are over 11,000 guitar lessons and 700 songs all shot in HD.
GuitarTricks has 32 regular professional guitar tutors.
GuitarTricks uses a Core Learning System which they claim delivers results far quicker than any other provider.
In a recent survey GuitarTricks members claimed that they learned 50 – 100% quicker compared to other learning systems.
There we have it the bold figures and claims from both JamPlay and GuitarTricks. But which is better JamPlay or GuitarTricks? To answer that question it is probably worth comparing the key figures side by side.
GuitarTricks vs JamPlay
Money back guarantee
Level of experience
Beginner to advanced
Beginner to advanced
Number of members (current)
12 to choose from including: Blues Country Metal Rock Jazz
20 to choose from including: Blues Country Metal Rock Jazz Reggae Folk Brazilian
Songs available to learn
Over 700 available
Over 300 available
Personalised learning plan Progress history
Personalised learning plan Progress history Progress rewards
Jam Tracks Chord and scale library Full tabs
Jam Tracks Chord and scale library Full tabs Games
Active forums Real-time teaching support
Active forums Live webcam sessions
Number of lessons
Number of tutors
32 professional guitarists
80 professional guitarists including: Steve Stevens Mike Mushok (Staind) Flatus Maximus (GWAR) Glen Drover (Megadeth)
As you can see from the comparison table there is not much to separate the two, which makes it difficult to answer the question over which is better GuitarTricks or JamPlay. For me I prefer the look and feel of JamPlay compared to GuitarTricks but I think that this is really down to personal taste. Both are fantastic, you are guaranteed to learn and improve your ability and understanding of the guitar and both represent fantastic value for money. Currently an annual subscription with JamPlay is $109.95 which is $50 less than the usual price. GuitarTricks are also offering a 20% discount on the annual subscription reducing the price from $179 to an amazing $143.20.
Bearing all this in mind I would say that really the best way to decide is to try them for yourself. Both offer free accounts which give you access to tonnes of free lessons and other goodies. You can then decide which you prefer and sign-up to that provider.
Which do you prefer? If you were going to recommend one which would you recommend, GuitarTricks or JamPlay? Let us know by casting your vote in our pole below.
To find out more about JamPlay visit their website at JamPlay.com.