So I hear you’re a beginner and just getting started on the long and wonderful journey of playing the acoustic guitar. In this article I’m going to give you the information you need to make the right choice for the best acoustic guitar for you based on my thirty plus years of personal experience as a professional guitarist, teacher and composer.
I was eleven when I got my first acoustic guitar, a non-descript beat up nameless instrument we purchased in Tijuana, Mexico as a fluke on a family trip. It was a toy to me, and after hearing Jimi Hendrix for the first time, I soon realized it was my favorite toy. When we went to the local music store with a few teaching rooms in the back we realized I needed picks, new strings, a case, books and of course, lessons.
So in presenting the best acoustic guitar for you in the world we live in today I’m going to focus on a product that will give you not only a quality instrument, but also everything you need to get started the right way, with the best chance to succeed.
After careful consideration and researching many brands in the beginner to mid range level from Fender, Squier and Oscar Schmidt I recommend the Yamaha APX500lll Acoustic Electric with the Yamaha accessory kit. I chose this particular package for a number of reasons. Yamaha began way back in 1887 building pianos and reed organs, and of course today produces many types of products from a wide array of musical instruments and audio gear, to home appliances, motorcycles and boats to keyboards and even robots.
A company that is successful for going on a hundred and thirty years is doing things the right way. Their company story is an extremely interesting one you should check out. Anyway, my experience with their guitars in the beginner to mid range market is consistent quality and value through and through. They are solid, sturdy guitars that stay in tune, sound good, look good and are easy to play for a fair price.
The APX500111, with its “thin line” design features an easy to hold and play neck and fret board, which is great for beginners. I believe ease of play will encourage you to play more which will help you get better faster which will encourage you to play more which will help you get better faster. It has a cutaway for easy access to the high frets so you can explore the full range of this fine instrument, and when the time comes, if you are so inclined, wail a little bit.
I also chose an electric acoustic guitar so that you would have the option to plug it in and have the versatility to play clean, warm acoustic music or add the multitude of sounds amplification and pedals and effects can provide. Speaking of the electronics, they are powered by AA batteries and offer a 3-band equalizer for a variety of tones.
Aesthetically speaking, this is a beautiful instrument with spruce wood, a gloss finish and simple but elegant ornamentation around the edge of the body and around the sound hole. It is available in black, natural wood, oriental blue burst, dusk sun red or vintage sunburst finishes.
In addition to the guitar, you can – and should – purchase the Yamaha Accessory Kit, which includes an A-frame guitar stand, a sturdy versatile stand which will hold just about any string instrument, guitar picks, a guitar strap, the GCT-1 Tuner, which clips on the guitar, and of course, will help you play in tune – trust me that always helps – and a cloth to polish the guitar and keep it clean. Keeping the guitar clean will extend the life of your strings and keep visits to the local guitar shop for maintenance to a minimum.
I also chose this guitar because as an eternal optimist I believe when you have a great guitar that feels right and is easy to play you’ll love playing and continue and excel. This guitar isn’t going to break your piggy bank, but it’s quality and versatility will allow you to grow as a player in any style, and this instrument is “gig ready”. Whether you want to wail, write songs, jam with friends or play in a band the Yamaha APX50lll will help you get the job done.
The next step on the road to success as a guitarist, in my opinion, is to find a good teacher. A friendly, university-trained professional who can play in a variety of styles and will teach you the fundamentals of music including reading standard music notation, theory, composition, arranging and improvisation while helping you play the way you want to play and help you find your voice on the instrument is essential. Whether that person exists online or in your neighborhood, find him or her immediately register for lessons and get started!