Article Written by Guest Author – Crystal Casey
Learning a musical instrument is a rewarding and fulfilling experience that has been an important part of human culture for centuries. As technology evolves, music students have more and more resources for learning. The most popular method of learning an instrument has always been through private music lessons, but students now have the option to take a more DIY approach by watching music lesson videos. While both have advantages, there are significant differences between the two, and there is a reason that private music lessons still reign supreme when it comes to learning an instrument.
Can You Learn an Instrument Through Video Lessons?
Music lesson videos are pre-recorded videos that teach you how to play an instrument. They can be found on various websites and are often available for a subscription fee. The cost varies depending on the platform and the quality of the videos, but they are typically less expensive than private lessons.
While music lesson videos can be a helpful resource for learning an instrument, they do have their drawbacks. One of their biggest disadvantages is that they cannot provide feedback or answer questions. The video may cover a particular technique, but it won’t be able to assess how you are playing and whether you are doing it correctly. This can lead to incorrect technique and developing bad habits that are difficult to break later on.
Another downside of music lesson videos is that they are not tailored to the student. A teaching video may only be in one learning style that doesn’t suit every learner. Moreover, if the video series moves too fast or covers musical knowledge that the student has not yet been exposed to, the student may quickly feel lost or frustrated and give up. If the series moves too slowly, the student may get bored, lose interest, and realize they wasted their money on a course they didn’t need.
Finally, there is the issue of personal connection and motivation. A video in “catch all” format can provide very little, if any, of this. The students are not known by name, and the teacher cannot motivate individuals based on their specific challenges or learning style.
What Are the Benefits of Private Music Lessons?
Private music lessons, on the other hand, are given in real-time by a professional musician. One of the biggest benefits of music teachers is the personalized attention you receive. The instructor can tailor the lessons to your distinct needs and provide immediate feedback on how you are playing. This can help you avoid bad habits and make progress much more quickly.
When the teacher is present with the student, whether in-person or virtually, there is a conversational approach to learning that allows students to ask for help when they need it and get answers to their specific questions as they arise in the moment.
Private lessons are also tailored to your individual goals. If you want to focus on a particular genre or technique, your teacher can help you do that. They can also help you develop a practice routine that suits you best.
Are Private Lessons Better than Group Lessons?
While group music lessons can be a fun and social way to learn an instrument, the teacher’s attention is divided between multiple students, so you may not receive the personalized attention you need to learn your instrument well.
Private lessons, on the other hand, are focused solely on you and your goals. When you learn with a professional musician as their only student at a given time, the teacher can structure your lessons based on you and you alone. That includes your learning style, your musical goals, your learning speed, and your particular music interests.
For this reason, group lessons should be seen as a supplement to private lessons rather than a replacement for them.
Are Virtual Music Lessons Worth It?
Virtual private music lessons are generally more costly than group lessons or pre-recorded lesson videos, but they are absolutely worth it! There is no substitute for a teacher who can provide immediate, individualized feedback and lesson planning catered to each unique student. Everything about the student is taken into consideration from their age to their previous experience to their goals going forward. Technology can be a helpful tool in learning music for both students and teachers, but a live music educator will provide the most effective and comprehensive learning experience. That’s why Forbes Music offers in-home and real-time virtual private lessons and matches you with the best fit music teacher to ensure you are getting the most you can from every class.
So Which Type of Music Lesson is Right for Me?
When trying to decide between which type of music lesson to take, it’s important to remember that each option offers something for different goals and circumstances. Here are few key considerations to keep in mind when deciding between in-person, virtual or group lessons:
- Learning style: It’s important to consider how the student learns best, as well as their current skill level, general aptitude, and a pace that won’t feel overwhelming or discouraging.
- Location: The location of the lesson is also a factor to consider. In-person lessons may be more convenient if you have adequate space at home and the teacher is located nearby. On the other hand, virtual lessons may be a better option if space is limited or the teacher is located far away.
- Schedule: Your schedule is another key factor to consider. Group lessons usually have a fixed schedule, and in-person lessons may have limited availability as the teacher has to account for travel time which may be less flexible. However, virtual lessons can be more flexible, allowing you to schedule lessons at a time that works best for everyone.
- Learning goals: Your learning goals can also influence your decision. Group lessons can be a good option for beginners to start learning general concepts if you’re not quite ready to commit to full lessons, or for those who are looking to supplement their current skill sets and learn with other people in a constructive environment. In-person and virtual lessons may be more effective if you’re looking to receive one-on-one attention from a teacher.
- Technology and equipment: Remember that you’re considering virtual lessons, you need to have the appropriate technology and equipment to ensure a smooth learning experience. You’ll need a stable internet connection, a decent webcam, and a good microphone.
If you’re ready to take the next step towards your musical goals Forbes Music can help you find the best fit for your music lesson needs. Supported by incredible people who absolutely love music and teaching, Forbes Music has the resources, knowledge, and background to make every music learning experience unforgettable.