San Antonio Guitar Lessons: What You’ll Learn in the First Few Lessons

Heading to your first San Antonio guitar lessons can be overwhelming – especially if you’ve never picked up the instrument before. You may be wondering if the lessons will be hard, if you’ll be good enough, and what you’ll learn. The questions can seem endless!

Fortunately, we’re here to help. If you’re about to embark on San Antonio guitar lessons for the first time, here’s what you can expect going into your first few sessions:

  1. Parts of the guitar – First, you’ll be walked through all the parts of the guitar: the frets, strings, neck and head. You’ll also learn how to string your guitar, as well as how to take good care of it.
  2. Music theory basics – You’ll get an introduction to reading music, if you don’t already know how to. This may include interpreting time signatures, reading notes, and figuring out rhythm.
  3. Tabs – You’ll discover tabs, a quick and easy way to learn popular songs on the guitar. You’ll use tabbed songs in many lessons to come.
  4. Basic chords – You’ll be exposed to a basic set of chords, most likely G, A, C and D. You may even play a short song or two with them.
  5. Strumming patterns – You’ll begin to use different strumming patterns, and you may strum along with a song or two to get a feel for how they work.
  6. Songs – You may begin to learn some simple, basic songs. These will help you practice the skills you’ve learned and begin to master them.

Your instructor will also likely assign you some homework. This could include learning a song, working your way through a part of your instructional book, or mastering a strumming pattern or scale.

Want to learn more about San Antonio guitar lessons? Contact the Musical Arts Center of San Antonio today. We’ll match you with the perfect instructor for your musical goals.

Singing Lessons for Beginners: How to Warm Up Your Voice

When you take singing lessons for beginners, your instructor will likely spend a few minutes helping you warm up your voice at the start of each session. However, if you really want to utilize your lesson time best and get the most instruction time in possible, you can actually warm up your voice at home, before leaving for your lesson. This will save time, and ensure you get as much one-on-one lesson time as you can.

Not sure how to do that? Just follow these easy steps:

  1. Stand up straight, and maintain good posture. Put your feet flat on the floor, your head up, and your shoulders back. This will allow you to breathe properly while warming up.
  2. Next, breathe deeply. Place your hand on your diaphragm, and feel it move up and down as you slowly breathe in and out. When exhaling, make a hissing sound. This teaches you to control the amount of air you expel and gives you a better grasp on your breath.
  3. Use the heels of your hand to massage your jaw on both sides. This relaxes the muscles and makes singing easier.
  4. Drink a glass of warm tea or warm water with honey. Avoid caffeine, smoking or cold drinks before your lesson.
  5. Sing your scales. Start off with a scale you’re comfortable with, and run through it a few times. Then, do the same for one octave up and one octave down.
  6. Practice lip and tongue trills. These will relax your muscles and help strengthen your breathing.
  7. Try a few sirens. Pick a note and slowly increase the volume, as well as the pitch. Then, go back down to where you started, and do it all over again. If done correctly, it should sound like a police siren.
  8. Finally, hum. Pick an easy song or just a few notes, and hum them quietly to yourself. This warms up your voice without straining it or wearing it out.

Are you enrolled in singing lessons for beginners? Then try these warm up exercises before your next session. Want to learn more about singing lessons? Contact the Musical Arts Center of San Antonio today.

Taking Private Piano Lessons? Why You Should Always Keep Your Piano in Tune

Plenty of at-home practice is crucial if you want to be great at piano. No matter how many private piano lessons you take, you absolutely must dedicate time outside of the classroom if you want to be a great pianist. Unfortunately, many students play on older, outdated and, worst of all, out-of-tune pianos. This not only makes it harder to learn, it can also slow their development as a player.

Are you taking private piano lessons? Are you being careful to tune up and care for your at-home instrument? If not, here’s why you should start today:

  • Your notes, scales and songs won’t sound right – When you’re just starting out with piano lessons, a tuned instrument is crucial. Without it, the scales, notes and songs you’re learning won’t sound right. Not only will that affect your ability to learn them correctly, it will also make it harder to tell when you’re making a mistake. Furthermore, it can also affect your ear training, making it more difficult for you to recognize notes and play songs by ear later on down the line.
  • You could damage your piano – An out of tune piano is usually indicative of other problems as well. It could mean there are issues with the string tension, hammers or other parts of the piano, and the longer these problems go unfixed, the more your instrument will suffer. Pianos need regular tuning and servicing in order to last you a long time.
  • It will cost you more – The longer you wait to have your piano tuned, the more it will cost you. You’ll probably need a corrective treatment, pitch raising or double tuning in order to get your instrument back in proper working condition, and those can all cost a pretty penny.

Want to learn more about private piano lessons or keeping your piano in tune? Contact the Musical Arts Center of San Antonio today. Our expert piano instructors are here to help.

4 Best Practice Songs for Electric Guitar Lessons

When you’re just starting out with electric guitar lessons, nothing is more important than practice. Unfortunately, just reading out of an instructional book or playing the same old scales over and over again can get pretty boring. If you want to keep yourself interested and stay motivated about your daily practice sessions, then you need to vary your practice material often.

To help, we’ve pulled together some of the best practice songs there are. Use these to reinforce the skills you learn in your electric guitar lessons and have some fun while you’re at it:

  • “Wish You Were Here”, Pink Floyd – This song is a great one, because it includes a lot of different techniques. You’ll use hammer-ons and pull-offs, you’ll try a riff or two, and you’ll learn some basic chords around the G major scale. Plus, it’s on the longer side, so you’ll look pretty impressive if you can pull it off.
  • “Smells Like Teen Spirit”, Nirvana – An iconic song of the 90s, this one is perfect for new guitar players. You’ll not only use the four most important power chords, you’ll also try note bending and riffing.
  • “Summer of ’69”, Bryan Adams – This 80’s classic uses open, power and barre chords, as well as lots of palm-mutes, so you’ll get plenty of hands-on practice. It also has a simple riff you can learn in just a few minutes.
  • “Sweet Child O’ Mine”, Guns N’ Roses – Though the riff is a little difficult, this song’s slow tempo makes it easier to learn and grasp. It also has consistent patterns and simple solos, so mastering it comes pretty easily to most beginners.

If you’re just beginning your electric guitar lessons and need a way to improve your practice sessions, try your hand at some of these classic songs. Want more guidance? Contact the Musical Arts Center of San Antonio today and sit down with one of our expert instructors.