Youtube is definitely driving a revolution of learning because it is based on the idea of rapid evolution. The more people who can collaborate on an idea often the faster it will evolve. The video above points out this fact out and shows examples of dancers who have learnt purely from Youtube videos. While I am extremely excited about this revolution I am cautious about overstating the idea of actually learning from Youtube. I think we need to be careful not to take the approach that one hat fits all. While some students will become great guitarists with nothing more than an Internet connection most will probably not. I believe the Internet is driving both inspiration and innovation which is fantastic but developing fundamental skills has not changed. The Internet may introduce new and wonderful ways to play a guitar but the essential skills have not changed and are unlikely to change. What’s more is Youtube does not know you or understand your needs. When learning guitar like say learning a language what we need most is a teacher who knows your particular needs hopefully with a method that can be tailored to suit those needs.
Questions and answers
Youtube surprisingly is creating more questions then it answers. Youtube is inspiring people to learn guitar but can also leave them with unanswered questions. Every student is different and when a video is made it may be good for one student but not another. Its the Goldilocks scenario. Too hot, too cold, just right. When you go searching for Youtube videos most will be too advanced, too simple or just irrelevant. I uploaded some videos for beginner students and while I got some good comments of appreciation others would criticise making comments that I was going too slow or giving too much explanation. I knew these comments were from frustrated guitar students who felt I could have said in 2 minutes what I took 10 minutes to say. This was because they were obviously more advanced and did not need so much explanation.
Nothing beats a teacher
There is no question that Youtube is the best thing since the invention of the guitar but it should compliment your lessons not replace them. Students who only learn from Youtube are in fact spending a lot of time searching and watching Youtube videos and often less practicing. Youtube videos unfortunately need to be watched before you can decided whether they are relevant to you. There are those individuals who no doubt sit with their guitar watching Youtube videos for 8 hours a day and become amazing guitarists and if you have the time why not. For the rest of us who don’t have that luxury we need to make sure we make the most of our time and that is where a teacher comes in. A good teacher will know what you need to be working on at any given point. They will know the next logical step. You won’t spend hours searching for what you need.
Work hard and smart
A teacher is still and probably always will be your best option for learning guitar. When we hear of great guitar players who were self taught we don’t see the whole picture. The whole picture usually shows someone practicing for hours and hours everyday for several years. Their method for success is simply hours invested. Its like the person who has a million dollars from working 14 hours a day for 20 years. They might be rich but they didn’t necessarily work very smart. I do believe in working hard but also smart. A good teacher will show you how to be efficient with your time and a smart student will find a good teacher.