Learning to play the guitar can be overwhelming with its plethora of concepts; from handling techniques to music reading. It also is not just as simple as buying a guitar and freestyle jamming! There are other things that you need to pick up with your shiny new guitar. Some of these things are absolutely essential to getting started on the right path. Here, we will go over a list of essential and useful items worth picking up, whether you are a new or experienced guitar player.
Picking up a tuner is probably one of the most important things you will do, as learning to play while out of tune is not going to be productive or enjoyable. It is possible to tune a guitar without one, but beginners may struggle to do it by ear. Having one of these around will be extremely helpful, regardless of your skill level. There are many different types of tuners to choose from such as pedal tuners and hand held tuners! Some can even clip on to your guitar for convenience. You can pick whichever kind you like the most.
These are an extremely useful item for strumming on your guitar, and are often quite inexpensive; picking some up should be a priority. Getting a variety of picks will also be your best bet; picks come in varying levels of thickness, and both thin and thick picks have their uses. Each level of thickness will be useful for different play styles, and you can also find out what kind of pick works the best for you this way. Thick picks are good for powerful, singular notes and thin picks work great for chords, which is certainly what beginners should learn first. Nylon picks are a good choice to start out with, as they are generally the most versatile. Overall, picks are more in-depth than you would think; you can check out our blog on how to choose your picks if you are seeking more information!
Having spare strings on hand is quite important, as guitar strings can and will break, or may even need replacing due to corrosion or other factors. If you keep spares on you, you won’t experience any interruptions in your playing because you won’t have to run out to the nearest music store or wait for an online order to ship to you. The type of strings you will need to get will depend on the type of guitar you have, but getting coated strings is a good idea as they will resist corrosion better. You will also want to stick with a lighter gauge of string, as these are easier for beginners to use.
Having a case may not seem necessary at first, as you can just put your guitar up against the wall or your furniture and forget about it to store it. However, this is not a particularly safe way to store a guitar. It could not only fall and easily get damaged, ruining your investment, but it could also become damaged by the environment. The materials guitars are made out of are quite susceptible to humidity and temperature damage, and that is certainly not something you want to deal with. Humidity issues can create problems such as swollen wood and damaged glue joints. Uncovered guitar strings will also dull much faster compared to a covered guitar. Something as simple as utilizing a guitar case will prevent these things from happening. Hard cases are best for long-term storage and there are even options to control the humidity in these, but soft cases work great too and are certainly better than nothing.
A capo is a useful tool that looks like a clip. It goes over your strings on a specific fret on your guitar to raise the pitch that you are playing in. It is not something you will need immediately, but you can often find ones of good quality for cheap, so it is useful to pick one up so you have it when you’re ready to start using it. Capos also help because you can play songs in different keys without needing to adjust the tuning of the guitar and without changing chord shapes. This will help you play more advanced songs sooner.
Whether you are learning acoustic or electric guitar, these items are all beneficial to the guitar playing experience. Let these items augment your journey to becoming a guitar legend. What are you waiting for? Go get to jamming!