I had a student come in for a lesson and heard him say this about the song we were working on:

“So I saw this other version on the internet and I saw that they did things different than how you showed me.”

This student was correct.

There are going to be multiple versions of songs out there on the internet. Some of them are right and some of them are very wrong. And that’s only one of the issues with learning things online. The biggest problem?

The internet does not customize songs for you!

The version of the song we were working on was simplified to fit the students playing ability and what they were capable of doing currently with their instrument. The original was just to hard for where that student was at with their playing. When you click on a Youtube video or open Ultimate Guitar to look up a song, you have no clue whether or not you are ready to play that song. Some student try and get frustrated that they haven’t learned how to play yet.

Not only does the internet not take your strengths and weaknesses into consideration, there is also a lot of conflicting information on the internet. One teacher teaches teaches something this way and one teaches it another way. So who’s right? They both might be correct or they both might be wrong.

The biggest commitment you can make as a student is believing in the plan set forth for you by your teacher.

I know I personally have a method to the madness and my students see it unfold from week to week. It makes sense why we did things in a particular order and why we focused on other skills more than other at certain times during the learning process.

The students that excel the best focus on what I tell them to focus on and don’t get distracted by learning the lick of the week online.

While I encourage exploration in music and absolutely love when students venture out to learn their own songs, I often times notice that students come in with a lot more questions than answers to some of the things they are watching on the internet.

Don’t let the internet sabotage your progress or playing. 

Bring song suggestions in to your teacher and see if it’s right for you. If it’s not, they may suggest something else or simplify the song to fit your needs. That is why you have a teacher. They have your best interests in mind and will hold your hand through the entire process to make sure you are successful.

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