Are Private Music Lessons Worth It For Amateurs?

If you are trying to learn an instrument on your own, you’ve probably wrestled with plateaus, confusion, and the various limitations of teaching yourself how to play music. Popular online courses are helpful but extremely limited, and method books are designed for use with an experienced teacher.

But should you invest in private music lessons with a professional? In this article we will discuss the need for private music lessons, what you will experience learning on your own, and more. We’ve worked with hundreds of music students at Kosha Music Academy, and we will be drawing from our personal experience.

If you would like to learn more about our piano lessons in San Antonio, our guitar lessons in San Antonio, or other music lessons, please get in touch!

Are Private Music Lessons Worth It For Amateurs and Other Musicians?

Yes, private music lessons are worth it for amateurs, aspiring professionals, hobbyists, and nearly everyone else. As long as your teacher is skilled, you will save a tremendous amount of time by taking lessons, you’ll avoid awkward gaps in your education, and you will be a much more competent and confident musician. Furthermore, a teacher holds you accountable – this is worth nearly as much as the knowledge you will acquire.

Now, we will discuss specific instruments – we receive questions about these instruments fairly often.

Are Private Violin Lessons Worth It?

Yes, private violin lessons are worth it even more so than most instruments. The violin is a challenging stringed instrument that demands perfect posture, correct elbow height, the ability to up-bow and down-bow, the ability to hold your violin between your shoulder and neck, and the ability to play notes perfectly in pitch without the benefit of frets.

We highly recommend that you find a professional violin teacher in San Antonio rather than teaching yourself. It may take 1-2 years for your technique alone to be rock-solid, and you will need to learn first position, second position and beyond while also mastering vibrato, tone, bowing techniques, and so much more.

Professional violinists are held in high prestige for a reason – it is one of the hardest (and most rewarding) instruments to play at a high level.

Do You Need Private Piano Lessons?

Nearly every piano hobbyist should take private lessons. The operating word is “nearly” because if you only want to learn how to play chords so you can accompany yourself singing, play in a local band, or something along those lines, you could probably learn on YouTube or with a method book. Some amateurs just want to learn one simple piano song at a time, and they have the time to learn by rote.  But if you want to be able to sight read, play classical music, and understand the finer aspects of music like theory and interpretation, you’ll need a teacher.

Can You Learn Guitar Without Lessons?

The guitar is one of the most popular hobbyist instruments, and that’s because you can easily teach yourself chords, or even other concepts like finger-picking, on your own. But you will be very limited. Amateurs with these goals may not need a teacher:

  • You are already a musician, but you want to add some basic guitar skills
  • You want to learn chords on the guitar to help write songs
  • You want to learn simple guitar technique to play in a garage band

But if you want to learn the notes, play scales, play melodies with accompaniment, and play multiple genres like jazz, rock, fusion, classical music, funk, and more, you’ll need a teacher.

If You Want To Play at a Pro Level, You Need Lessons

Simply Piano, Fender, MasterClass, and other online lessons programs can help you get started, give you a base level of competence, and may help musicians who are already taking lessons progress faster.

But you can’t reach an advanced level of musicianship in a reasonable amount of time without a teacher. You could spend 6-10 years researching teaching concepts, watching videos, and studying method books to teach yourself an instrument, but that time would be cut in half (or more) if you worked with a teacher.

What Does a Music Teacher Actually Do For You?

A music teacher, whether a voice lesson instructor, cello teacher, or something else, will introduce concepts in an intelligent manner in which each concept builds upon the previous concept. A teacher will develop a unique curriculum based on your strengths, weaknesses, and goals, and they will adjust their teaching strategy depending on your progress. They will also answer questions you have in real-time.

Perhaps most importantly, a teacher will show you exactly how to practice at home and learn music on your own. You don’t want to be a robot relying on videos or a teacher – your goal should be to learn how to be a dynamic musician who can teach himself how to play music on an instrument.