Congrats on deciding to pick up the guitar! You've finally tuned up and navigated your way through playing "Smoke on the Water."
While it's true that you can continue searching on YouTube to learn new techniques and find guitar tabs to learn your favorite songs online, if you truly aspire to enhance your guitar skills, seeking the right kind of guidance is essential.
Luckily for you, nowadays, there is an abundance of digital learning tools at your disposal.
These tools can serve as valuable supplements to your traditional, face-to-face guitar lessons or act as standalone replacements.
I've been playing guitar for almost 20 years, and through that process, I have learned a lot about what does and doesn't work for learning guitar, no matter your skill level, learning style, or goals.
For that reason, I carefully compiled a selection of some of my favorite apps and websites that can aid you in learning the guitar.
Ready to shred?
Let's dive in!
1. Fender Play - Best Overall
I'm a huge Fender fan. There's no doubt about it.
One of the reasons I really like this app is that the element of personal choice is emphasized.
Depending on what your goals are as a guitarist, you can have Fender Play help you get there.
Unless you're living under a rock, you probably already know that Fender is a renowned brand among guitarists, and its reputation precedes it. Even if you haven't strummed a guitar before, chances are you've come across the name Fender.
After many decades and an undeniably influential presence in the music industry, the company is delivering the opportunity for everyone to learn guitar online.
Their mobile application, Fender Play, is accessible on both Apple and Android devices. It strives to be a reliable and all-encompassing platform for individuals seeking top-notch online guitar lessons.
Designed mostly for beginners, this guitar learning app offers a variety of tutorials tailored to meet the needs of just about anyone.
However, with that said, what I truly love about Fender Play is that it presents an extensive range of concise tutorials for advanced guitarists as well. These lessons vary in duration, with some as short as three minutes, while others form part of more extensive courses, depending on the topic covered.
Overall, the bite-sized format makes learning guitar more easily manageable, positioning Fender Play as one of the top guitar training apps available.
Similar to its competitors, as you'll soon see, Fender Play provides a free trial option, allowing you to experience its many features and benefits before committing to a subscription. And yes, the subscription is a bit pricey, though definitely worth it! Once the free trial period concludes, you can choose between monthly or yearly subscription plans.
With Fender's established reputation as a trusted brand, their app has garnered recommendations from various reputable music and entertainment sources.
The primary objective of Fender Play is to have you playing your favorite songs within minutes.
And depending on where you're practicing, it's worth noting that it's available on multiple platforms, such as smartphones, tablets, and computers, all of which have a streamlined and straightforward interface.
Regardless of your skill level, whether you're a beginner or expert, Fender Play accommodates your needs. The app provides comprehensive guitar learning resources, including finger placement, strumming patterns, chord tutorials, and more.
2. The Gibson App - Innovative Audio Listening Solution
Next, we have the Gibson App , which is powered by Amped!, an innovative app that aims to enhance traditional beginner guitar lessons through the use of augmented audio reality .
What in the world is that you ask?
According to Gibson, it's an immersive experience where the app actively listens to your playing and provides real-time modifications and feedback. It's a super unique approach that creates a rewarding learning environment and keeps you motivated. It's truly like having an instructor in the room.
To embark on your transformative learning journey with Gibson, all you need is a guitar and a pair of headphones. Beyond its wide array of beginner guitar lessons, the Gibson App offers an array of supplementary resources for more advanced guitarists.
In a sea of freely available online guitar lesson apps, The Gibson App is striving to offer a different approach. If you find yourself facing difficulties with conventional apps, exploring Amped as a learning alternative could be beneficial.
In my opinion, it's one of the most stimulating and gratifying app-based learning experiences I've found. While practice itself may never be effortless, a well-crafted app can make it far more enjoyable and efficient.
However, it's worth noting that at the time of writing this article, this fresh and exciting method for learning guitar online is only accessible on Apple products, so Android users will have to look elsewhere until they finish developing that version.
3. Jamorama - Best for Lifetime Access
Not only is Jamorama a great learning app, but it's also excellent for those who are a bit weary of committing to a single program.
One significant advantage of Jamorama is the lifetime access it provides to its content, setting it apart from its competitors, many of whom do not offer this feature.
Furthermore, Jamorama offers a generous 120-day money-back guarantee. If you discover that the Jamorama interface or video content doesn't align with your learning style, you can request a full refund!
Now, to the good stuff.
Jamorama covers a wide range of crucial guitar skills in its lessons, including comprehensive lessons on the following topics:
- Foundational Skills
- Picking Patterns
- Guitar TAB
- Music Theory
- Lead Guitar
- Practice Routines
- Setting Goals
- Guitar Maintenance
The system also offers excellent progress tracking and fun jam-alongs to make practice more exciting! I highly recommend reading through the company's site to find out more about what they dub their "comprehensive 10-part guitar system."
4. TrueFire - Best for Learning At Your Own Pace
Right off the bat, it's important to note that TrueFire sets itself apart by offering the option to download individual courses for a one-time fee, which is a major selling point not commonly found in other apps. With this unique access feature, you get greater flexibility and convenience.
Plus, with an extensive library of over 700 courses and a total of 33,000 lessons available, Truefire offers a vast array of learning resources for guitarists of all shapes and sizes. This expansive collection ensures that you can explore a wide range of topics and styles to suit your interests and skill level.
Another thing that I love about TrueFire is that it promotes an individualized learning pace.
Balancing guitar practice with other commitments in life can be challenging. In fact, it's one of the reasons many people never commit to learning guitar!
Of course, to truly excel as a guitarist, it is crucial to consistently dedicate time to learning and honing your skills. TrueFire recognizes that life and playing can be hard to balance and offers the flexibility to develop your guitar skills at your own pace, whenever and wherever you choose, thanks to its availability across multiple devices.
Truefire has also positioned itself as a versatile platform catering to guitarists of all skill levels . While some platforms focus solely on beginners or advanced players, TrueFire strikes a nice balance by offering something for everyone.
If you're a beginner seeking the best guitar app to kickstart your journey, I don't doubt you'll find substantial value in its tailored content and resources. Furthermore, if you're looking to establish a long-term learning and growth plan on the platform, you'll find plenty of courses that cater to your needs as you progress beyond the beginner realm.
While there are several things I love about TrueFire, some of my favorite features include:
- Quality TAB and Notation
- Caliber of Educators
- Detailed Progress Tracking
- Versatile Learning Paths
- Looping and Slow-Mo
- Interactive Curriculum
- HD Video Lessons
If that's not enough, you can even get in touch with one of TrueFire's personal instructors for one-on-one lessons.
5. Guitar Tricks - Incredible Learning System
Guitar Tricks is one of my absolute favorite platforms for learning guitar. The company has developed an exceptional guitar learning app featuring an impressive collection of over 11,000 comprehensive video lessons suitable for guitarists of all skill levels.
With such an extensive database of online guitar lessons, you will always have a wealth of resources at your disposal. As you progress and enhance your skills, Guitar Tricks ensures that you never run out of lessons to explore.
The company has been around since 1998, providing online guitar lessons through its website. The years of experience become pretty evident in the meticulously designed guitar app, which incorporates proven methods and abundant resources, reflecting their expertise in the field.
At the heart of Guitar Tricks' approach to easy learning is their acclaimed Core Learning System .
This systematic approach guides you through a comprehensive learning process, starting from the fundamentals and covering essential aspects such as proper guitar picking techniques, correct guitar positioning, basic chords, and strumming techniques.
As you continue progressing through the Core Learning System, you will eventually advance to more intricate lessons, delving into scales, minor and seventh chords, and reading music.
Each lesson seamlessly builds upon the previous ones, gradually strengthening your familiarity with the fundamental aspects of guitar playing. The most exciting aspect is that, at every stage of the Core Learning System, you get to actively play songs, making the overall process that much more enjoyable.
If you're keen on acquiring the foundational skills of blues, funk, folk, rock, or country, Guitar Tricks has the ideal learning resources for each, tailored beautifully to different genres. You'll even find ultra-focused guitar courses, such as the "Beatles Songs Course" (a personal favorite of mine).
Plus, with such a wide range of instructors to choose from, you get some of the finest online guitar lessons for every skill level.
Beyond the Core Learning System, Guitar Tricks encompasses many impressive features, including a vast collection of over 1,000 iconic songs, with new releases consistently added each week, an easy-to-navigate website with user-friendly and intuitive. features, and individual coaching sessions for personalized support and guidance.
If you want the opportunity to explore and determine whether or not Guitar Tricks aligns with your learning needs, you can take advantage of the free trial period.
6. Guitar Pro - Best for Consistently New Content
Guitar Pro is an app that is clearly committed to keeping online guitar learning diverse and exciting. The latest version of the app, Guitar Pro 8 , has a number of top-notch features that contribute to its reputation as one of the top guitar learning apps.
For starters, it's a wonderful app for learning to read and compose music.
The latest version allows you to modify various elements directly within your score, such as key signature, time signature, clef, tempo, tuning, chords, sections, chords, texts, fermata, and more. With versatile editing capabilities, you can personalize your learning experience and tailor your scores to your preferences.
The latest update of Guitar Pro also introduces an array of additional features that enhance the user experience, including the convenient browser-based file search, the ability to play thousands of tabs, convert older Guitar Pro files, and customize tuning on a string-by-string basis.
In its entirety, Guitar Pro feels like a dynamic and versatile learning environment.
The proficient guitar learning system allows you to play along with transcriptions, access a vast music library, and explore a MASSIVE range of educational resources. Whether you prefer learning famous riffs from some of your favorite guitarists or expressing your own musical ideas, the abundance of available resources delivers an enriching online guitar learning experience.
One of my favorite things about this app is the bundle of intelligent reading features, including the "loop mode," which offers a valuable tool for improving your technique. Essentially, you can keep a section looping while gradually increasing the tempo until you're comfortable playing up to speed.
Learning any song slowly is SO crucial, and I love that they make it easy.
It's also worth noting that the comprehensive platform caters to both beginners and seasoned professionals, offering plenty of benefits across all skill levels.
It's available on both Apple and Android devices and is relatively affordable. I highly recommend giving it a go, especially if one of your main goals is to learn your favorite songs!
7. JamPlay - Best for Overall Diversity of Instructional Videos
JamPlay is an excellent jumping-off point for beginners, providing a wealth of resources, including 450+ On-Demand courses and more than 6,500 lessons. With such a comprehensive range of content, the app is tailored to meet the needs of experts just as much as beginner guitarists too.
JamPlay is Similar to Guitar Tricks in many ways, especially with its extensive collection of chords and lessons, all of which make practice sessions more accessible and enjoyable.
This guitar app offers a wide array of lessons suitable for both acoustic and electric guitar players. It serves as a valuable tool that provides focused guidance on numerous techniques, offering a specific direction for your guitar learning journey.
JamPlay stands out with its diverse selection of courses and lessons, all taught by skilled and experienced instructors. There's nothing that can compete with high-quality instruction and guidance throughout your learning process, and that's exactly where JamPlay delivers.
I would confidently say what sets JamPlay apart is the exceptional diversity of instructors. They employ over 100 teachers who contribute their expertise to the many available courses and lessons, allowing you to find the teaching style that suits you best.
For sheer variety and breadth of expertise, JamPlay is one of the best platforms for online guitar lessons available today. If the thousands of positive reviews from satisfied learners aren't enough t further attest to the high standard of teaching they offer, I don't know what is.
What's even cooler is that when you become a JamPlay member, you gain unlimited access to all lessons offered by every instructor, meaning you can explore and learn at your own pace.
The lessons they offer cover a vast range of genres (20 to be exact), so you can learn what YOU want to learn, regardless of your musical preferences.
Both the app and website have user-friendly interfaces, making navigation a breeze. Plus, they make signing up and getting started a straightforward process, so you can dive into your guitar learning journey without any complications. The focus remains firmly on guitar education, without annoying ads or distractions. from unrelated side projects.
The last thing worth noting is that JamPlay stands out by providing live video sessions in two unique formats. If you prefer attending weekly workshops, you can take advantage of the fact that JamPlay offers live sessions every week. If you can't attend weekly workshops, they record them, so you can access them at a later time.
On top of that, JamPlay offers a valuable live Q&A feature, so you can log in and seek assistance within eight hours of the workshop. You won't find this kind of interactive support system on any other apps, which is what makes JamPlay such a standout guitar learning app.
8. Justin Guitar - Personable Guitar Instructor
Justin Guitar is an exceptional guitar learning app and website offering free guitar lessons. Created by Justin Sandercoe, one of the world's top guitar teachers, this app has gained immense popularity over the past decade or so.
With over a million YouTube subscribers, Justin's ability to communicate musical ideas in a simple and approachable manner is evident, making the app the app an ideal choice for beginners, as well as a valuable resource for advanced guitarists aiming to enhance their skills.
One noteworthy feature of the app is its self-assessment system , which allows you to track your progress and improvement as you move forward. It's a super handy tool to further enhance the learning experience provided.
The songs in the app are presented in the classic play-along style, allowing for quick learning with lyrics and backing tracks. The flexibility to adjust tempo and sounds according to your ability and preferences makes it that much more appealing.
The app's small yet precise elements are what contribute to its effectiveness as a guitar learning tool. Plus, thanks to Justin, the app has a warm and inviting feel, creating a comfortable and conducive environment for practicing.
JustinGuitar.com was initially launched as a small website back in 2003, offering a few sample lessons to promote private lessons. Over time, it steadily grew, with Justin consistently adding content, even while touring, often working on a laptop in his hotel rooms all over the world.
It's clear that even today, he has a dedication to continuous improvement, which has certainly contributed to the app's success and quality.
It's also worth noting that this widely popular app that can be accessed on both Apple and Android devices, making it easily accessible, no matter what device you use.
9. Yousician - Provides More Instruments Than Guitar
Yousician is a highly regarded guitar learning app that also offers resources for a wide range of instruments, making it one of the best choices for musicians of all kinds, not just guitar players.
It's exceptional for everything from guitar to bass to piano.
The app's beginner-oriented approach makes it particularly appealing, as it delivers clear and concise explanations guiding users through everything from basic guitar riffs to complex chords in a step-by-step manner.
Yousician's primary objective is to help guitarists become comfortable navigating their instrument while simultaneously teaching them how to play simple songs using basic chords.
One of my favorite things to find on most guitar learning apps is when they offer practical applications, as it enhances the learning experience and allows beginners to start playing music right from the start (and why learn guitar if you can't play?).
Yousician is available as a free download, offering users access to a range of valuable resources. However, if you're seeking a more extensive musical learning experience, the app also provides various paid premium plans, granting access to an extensive library of content.
I can't learn without talking about the app's user-friendly interface, which provides easy navigation and a seamless experience no matter what device you're on. It also offers a collection of helpful practice songs and incorporates a reliable tuner, so you can always sound your best when playing.
The team over at Yousician stands out as one that is genuinely passionate about music education. In fact, within the Yousician team, you'll find a diverse group of dedicated professionals, including music educators, audio engineers, game designers, software developers, visual artists, and marketing experts.
Thanks to the wide range of expertise, the app delivers a rich and valuable experience for those who want to learn guitar and more.
As with many of the best guitar learning apps, Yousician is available on both Apple and Android devices, making it widely available. And with a continuously expanding database of songs and users, Yousician has established itself as one of the best guitar learning apps in the industry.
If you're looking to learn guitar, it is definitely worth giving Yousician a try.
10. ChordBank - Best Guitar Learning App for Chords
Chordbank might just be the best guitar learning app for beginners who want to learn and master chords, which serve as the foundation for many popular songs across different genres.
With just a handful of guitar chords, you can play thousands of tunes in just about any genre, from pop to rock to blues and beyond.
The simplicity and convenience of the Chordbank app make it an ideal tool for beginners.
From the moment you open up Chordbank, you can explore the many fingerings for a wide range of chords, making it easier than ever to learn them, practice them, and get them in your muscle memory.
Even spending just a few hours with Chordbank will improve your understanding of the fretboard and enhance your knowledge of rhythm and harmony. It's an incredibly valuable resource for learning how to play guitar.
The sleek and user-friendly Chord Bank interface includes helpful video lessons and a solid guitar tuner. Not only was it recognized as one of the top guitar learning apps in 2020, but it continues to gain popularity among guitar enthusiasts today.
Whether you're just getting your feet wet with basic major and minor cowboy chords or advancing to more complex seventh, ninth, diminished, and half-diminished chords, Chordbank can help.
The library includes thousands of chords, scales, and interactive lessons. What I truly love about this guitar app is that it's particularly beneficial for young learners, offering a diverse selection of guitar chords suitable for kids.
The guitar app is available on both Apple and Android devices.
11. Ultimate Guitar: Chords and Tabs - Best for Song Selection
Ultimate Guitar: Chord and Tabs earns its name with an extensive collection of chords and tabs from some of the well-known (and unknown) songs out there, making it one of the most comprehensive guitar apps available.
With over a million songs and nearly endless easy-to-read chords and tabs, this app offers a vast database of popular and beginner-friendly songs. Just about every guitarist and their mother knows about Ultimate Guitar.
Its impressive library has already attracted a large subscriber base over the years, establishing it as a deep-learning resource for aspiring guitarists.
Though it certainly embraces modern learning methods, Ultimate Guitar also retains the essence of traditional guitar learning, striking a balance between the past and present. The point is that YOU can choose how you want to learn, and how much you want technology involved.
Of course, with the song library being one of the biggest selling points of Ultimate Guitar, it's important to note that the app's library of tabs and chords is regularly updated, allowing users to access the latest and most popular song resources.
You can take advantage of the user ratings help identify the best resources, making it easy to find high-quality content quickly. As you can guess, with so many songs available, it's great for both beginners and experienced players.
In fact, Ultimate Guitar has been a trusted tool for learning guitar online since 1998. The website has built a dedicated community of over 10 million registered users, and with such a vibrant community of active forums and users, who contributes tabs, articles, and lessons, Ultimate Guitar fosters` a passionate environment for all guitar.
You'll also find a Top 100 list in the guitar app, allowing you to discover and learn your favorite songs with ease. The commitment to its user base is evident, as Ultimate Guitar continues to cater to the needs of its ever-growing community of guitarists.
Luckily for you, it's available on both Android and Apple devices!
12. Amplitube - Best for Learning About Guitar Gear
Amplitube is a different beast altogether, offering a unique experience as an accessory or tool unlike your traditional guitar learning apps. It serves as an all-inclusive tone studio, allowing you to create and customize your dream guitar rig from within your computer.
This all-in-one, in-the-box guitar recording studio was designed with the advanced guitarist in mind, providing access to virtual versions of top-quality guitar gear. However, this app also caters to guitarists seeking to elevate their skills and achieve a professional sound without having access to tons of physical amplifiers, pedals, and microphones.
Amplitube gives you the opportunity to utilize gear collections inspired by renowned guitarists like Slash, the Beatles, and Joe Satriani, giving you valuable insights into what kind of guitar gear these professionals use and how they dial in their most famous tones.
With these features, Amplitube stands out as one of the premier apps for learning and mastering the intricacies of guitar equipment.
If you have a passion for gear and enjoy exploring the vast reaches of sonic possibilities, Amplitube is a must-have. I've used it for years now, and even today, as an experienced guitarist, it provides me with a platform to unleash the full potential of a vast and expandable collection of ultra-realistic virtual amps, cabs, stompbox effects, and more.
Not only do I love it for recording, but it's wonderful for learning about different rigs.
However, it's worth mentioning that the Amplitube app requires the iRig UA hardware interface for optimal functionality and performance.
Once you have the necessary gear, though, you can easily install and use the Amplitube app on both any device!
Diving Into the World of Six Strings
There you have it, the best guitar learning apps on the market today.
Whether you want to learn how to shred on the electric guitar like Hendrix or Van Halen, or explore the soft, intricate sounds of fingerstyle like West Montgomery, these guitar apps can get you to where you want to go.
Most of these guitar apps offer a free version too, so you can try before you buy without the risk!
Godspeed young guitar guru, and good luck on your guitar playing journey!