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You have a love for music and a desire to make your own melodies. But you just don’t know where to begin. Maybe you are interested in rocking a guitar like Eric Clapton or striking the ivory keys like Liberace. Does this sound like you?
Using online lessons means you can learn to play an instrument at your own pace and when you have the time. Whatever your musical taste or instrument of choice, this list of sites is the perfect start to creating those sweet sounds.
Learn Music Theory and Sheet Music
Reading notes, learning musical terms, and understanding basic concepts are important to any beginning musician.
For a simple and clean way to learn, MusicTheory.net will teach you the basics and beyond. Each lesson contains images and text that you move through with a click. This is great because every point has a clear image to display along with the explanation.
MusicTheory.net also offers exercise and tools to further what you learn.
Music Theory for Musicians is another terrific site for learning the basic concepts of music. Like MusicTheory.net, this is a text-based tool and includes extra features. You can walk through the basics or intermediate sections, select a specific topic like scales or chords, and subscribe to a newsletter for updates and tips.
Music Theory for Musicians is a good reference to bookmark.
3. ReadSheetMusic.info [No Longer Available]
Understanding sheet music can be intimidating, but ReadSheetMusic.info makes it easy. You can learn about time signatures, counting rhythms, accents, and pitches. ReadSheetMusic.info provides reading exercises, a music dictionary, and tips.
All of this makes ReadSheetMusic.info a helpful source as you continue to learn music concepts.
Play the Piano or Keyboard
If you want to play the piano or keyboard then have a seat, warm up your fingers, and look at these great sites.
For beginner, intermediate, and advanced lessons, the Piano Lessons by Pianote can help you learn as you progress. With video lessons for everything from proper posture and ear training to counting notes and playing scales, this is an excellent online source to learn piano.
Piano Lessons by Pianote provides useful articles and links directly to Pianote.com when you are ready to join a community of pianists.
To learn piano and the piano or electric keyboard, Piano-Keyboard-Guide.com is a great site. Review the lessons that include clear instructions, images, and videos. Then head to the course in music theory, learn how to build chords, and read up on scales.
The site has a section for help with buying an electric keyboard from Yamaha or Casio if you are in the market for one.
Another solid source for piano lessons is Hoffman Academy. You can move through each of the 180 video lessons easily as they are broken up into different units. And before beginning a unit, you can see lists of the skills and concepts that you will learn.
The lessons are free, but if you would like to download sheet music or receive personalized practice instructions, take a look at the premium plan.
Once you sign up for a free account with Flowkey, you are on your way to mastering the piano. The site offers online lessons broken down into sections making it simple to keep track of where you leave off. The video tutorials are crisp and easy to understand. You can even check out lessons in reading sheet music and playing scales and chords.
Flowkey provides mobile apps, helpful articles, and a premium upgrade for new songs and support.
Pick Up a Guitar
Dust off your guitar and grab your pick because these resources offer terrific lessons for any aspiring guitarist.
JustinGuitar.com is a super place to start when you are ready to play guitar. You can start with the beginner’s course and songs, move up to intermediate offerings like funk and jazz, and then hone your techniques. The video lessons include a written description of what’s covered, which is really helpful.
For a wonderful online teaching site with plenty of extras, JustinGuitar.com is definitely worth a look.
GuitarLessons.com has a variety of free video lessons that include rhythm, blues, and lead guitar. You can also review the guide and free resources. Just click the Menu link at the top for these options. If you enjoy what you learn from the site, you can subscribe for $29 monthly or $129 yearly for features like progress tracking, an instructional curriculum, and live question and answer sessions.
10. Fender Play
Who better to learn guitar from than one of the biggest guitar manufacturers? Fender Play is produced by Fender and provides online lessons with a 30-day free trial. You will learn to play songs in a variety of genres including rock, pop, country, and folk. You can also track your progress and take your time with the structured lessons.
After the free trial, a Fender Play membership is $19.99 monthly and includes hundreds of songs, helpful articles, and tips.
Strum a Bass Guitar
Maybe bass guitar is more your style. Check out these awesome sites that will have you playing like Led Zepplin’s John Paul Jones before you know it.
StudyBass provides a ton of information and instruction if you are interested in bass guitar. With videos, images, and text, you will learn the fundamentals, how to understand keys and chords, and play sequences. The lessons are structured in an organized way based on other students who have learned to play.
Be sure to take a look at the tool and gear sections for tips on tuning, maintenance, and buying guides.
For learning scales, styles, techniques, and bass theory, visit CyberfretBass.com. The site offers audio and video to teach you the basics of bass guitar. You can also take advantage of advice and tips through handy articles.
If you sign up for a free CyberfretBass.com account, you can get access to jam tracks, lesson printouts, and other member perks.
13. LearnBass.net [No Longer Available]
Another cool source for bass guitar is LearnBass.net. This site uses videos and written instructions for tendon exercises, tuning your guitar, and warmups in addition to lessons on how to play. You can also check out funk licks, try tapping exercises, and play songs from Nirvana, Muse, and the Beatles.
Make sure you explore the top navigation of the site for more goodies that you will enjoy.
Tap the Drums
If you dream of becoming a drummer, why wait? Hold onto your drum sticks and pop open one of these excellent websites.
14. Drum Ambition
For a large selection of lessons along with notations, Drum Ambition is awesome. You can watch the video instructions and download sheet music for that lesson. If you want to move on after the few free lessons, you can subscribe for $14.99 per month and receive full support and access to the curriculum and monthly video blog.
15. Online Drummer
Online Drummer has a terrific step-by-step, free learning guide to start you on your drum journey. Begin with tuning and positioning, move on to beats and techniques, and then delve into real-world samples from AC/DC and Coldplay.
When you take a break, check out sheet music, lessons, beats, and ebooks because Online Drummer has it all.
With a huge number of lessons, FreeDrumLessons by Drumeo is an excellent way to go. From setting up and tuning to warming up and working out, you will be pleased with the selection of lessons for beginners. Then, try your hand at rock drum beats and drum fills.
The site is powered by Drumeo, so if you want to continue your drumming adventure, you can head to their site and sign up for a paid membership.
Bow a Violin
Classical music lovers may be leery of the challenge to play the violin. But, these resources will walk you through the steps and make it less intimidating.
17. Violin Lab
Get your bow in hand and head to Violin Lab for a superb collection of lessons. You can learn and practice from the lessons for beginners to those that help you master the violin. The videos are sharp and the site offers additional resources, details on workshops (coming soon for 2018), and assistance with note reading.
When you are ready to learn the violin, Violin Lab is the perfect place to start.
With clean images and clear explanations, ViolinOnline.com is a good reference to keep handy. Learn the basics of setting up, positioning, and fingering. Then click the String Class link from the top and step into the self-guided course for the history of string music. You can also grab free sheet music as an image file to keep practicing.
19. Alison Sparrow, The Online Piano & Violin Tutor [No Longer Available]
For lessons, tutorials, and techniques, visit the site for Alison Sparrow, The Online Piano & Violin Tutor. Each lesson is provided through video and all lessons are available at once, so you can redo one or jump back and forth. Learn about music theory and pick up free sheet music with a click.
As a bonus, Alison Sparrow’s site includes piano lessons in the same method as those for violin. You can also browse the piano lesson guides and song books in the online shop.
Try All-in-One Music Resources
When you are not quite sure which instrument you want to play, take a peek at sites that cover more than just one.
With how-tos for bass, drums, horns and so much more, open the Musician’s Toolkit. This full-featured site has plenty to explore and sink your teeth into. In addition to instrument fundamentals, you can learn more about the music business, ensemble, and songwriting. Download the music learning guide and visit the blog while you are there.
To access the entire Musician’s Toolkit library and receive extra resources, you can subscribe to an individual or family plan.
21. Little Kids Rock
For children to learn guitar, bass, keyboard, and vocals, Little Kids Rock is a super site. Just select an instrument and then choose the playing level and specific topic. The lessons are done with video, the site offers skill-building exercises, and your child can play fun music games too.
Don’t forget, if your little one has a favorite tune, check the great song selection that includes charts, lyrics, and videos.
What Is Your Musical Instrument of Choice?
It’s not always easy to find the time or the right tool for learning to play an instrument. That’s why the lessons offered on these sites are so convenient. Plus, if you have played an instrument in the past and just want to pick it up again, these resources can help you practice.
Do you love strumming ballads on the guitar, playing the classics on a piano, or tapping the cymbal on your drum set? Tell us about your favorite instrument and why you enjoy playing it.
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