The topic of natural talent and being able to learn to play the guitar comes up all the time. There are so many beginners out there that have given up their dreams of learning to play the guitar because they feel they dont have the natural talent to play the guitar like they want to.
I came across an article where Marty Schwartz answers a guitar student’s question about natural talent and their doubt in whether they will ever be able to play. If you have ever felt like this, keep reading…
Let me start by saying i love the way you play guitar and more importantly I totally dig the way you break everything down. i am definitely making way faster progress than I used to because I can see how I was ignoring some important fundamentals that were holding me back. didn’t realize that before I watched your DVDs. BUT … you make it look soooo easy but a lot of
times I wonder if I am just not naturally talented enough. how can I catch up to where I want to be?
First of all, the whole notion of “natural talent”
is mostly a myth.
Show me a guitarist who you think is great, and I
guarantee you that guy spent LOADS of time practicing
and figuring things out.
Scientists have actually been studying this in recent
years. And the conclusion they’re slowly coming to is
that there might be no such thing as “natural” talent
— or at the very least it’s vastly overrated.
Exhibit A: Me. I was not born musically talented. AT
In fact, I was basically tone deaf. Couldn’t sing in
There’s also no musical giftedness in my family.
Best thing you can say for my family — and I don’t
dismiss this at all — is that they were always very
supportive of any creative endeavor I wanted to do.
My dad was sort of a hippie, and my mom was an artist.
The creative arts were always welcomed in my family.
Here’s the crazy part . .
When I finally picked up the guitar at age 18 after
giving it up for five years, I was so far behind my
friends that I never would have dreamed I’d come
anywhere close to them.
As a matter of fact, I started playing the harmonica
back then just to be able to hang with my buds and
feel like I was contributing something musically.
Eventually, though, when guys were taking a break from
jamming or whatever, I would pick up a guitar and
I learned a few basic chords. I built up my skills a
little bit at a time.
And then a couple of my friends noticed me messing
around, and when they showed me some of the simple
progressions that are the bedrock of so many songs, I
was like, “Holy crap … THIS is what I’ve been
Something finally clicked for me as I played with the
simple but crucial progressions my friends had shown
me. I discovered how to put something together that
became an actual song and it was my first real
“lightbulb” moment with the guitar.
I will *never* forget the feeling. I got over my first
real hump and it felt like I was truly PLAYING
something for the first time instead of just fumbling
in the dark with a map and a bad flashlight.
THAT’S when I got a lot better and never looked back.
And now I am on a mission teaching as many people as
possible how to do the same thing.
I’m telling you, if you just follow my method, you’ll
get that “over the hump” moment, too, and your life
will never be the same.
By the way, not long ago I was on a trip in Hawaii and
ran into one of my old friends. This guy is a great
friend, and he was part of that group I thought I
would never catch up to.
But guess what? When I ran into him, I was the one who
gave him a lesson, not vice versa. Funny how life can
bring you full circle like that.
Point being: Forget about “natural talent.” Forget
about “catching up.”
You WILL get there if you keep at it with a smart,
Oh yeah — and keep it FUN.
P.S. It’s just a fact that if you want to get really
good at guitar, then you have to be smart and
systematic in your approach while keeping it fun. It’s
absolutely the best way I know how to get to the next
level quickly. That’s what I’ve done with my special
Beginner Guitar 12-DVD bundle.