Disclosure: We are paid by some of the companies who’s products we review. Read more here
Jamplay has established itself as one of the more popular destinations online when it comes to video guitar lessons. It was founded in 2006 by Kevin Wimer, Jeff Booth and Chris Dawson and features a multi-phase program that involves a variety of courses designed to suit every skill level with one ultimate purpose: to make you a proficient guitar player.
With over 40 expert instructors to walk you through basic all the way up to advanced guitar courses, Jamplay divides its lessons in phases, namely beginner, intermediate and song lessons to help you become well-versed in everything you need to know about mastering guitar playing and fully maximize your learning experience, with the dynamics of each phase summarized below:
Phase 1: Beginner. If you haven’t played guitar before or perhaps you’ve had some guitar playing experience but not that extensive, this is the course you got to get in on. This phase includes guitar mastery essentials such as basic chords and strumming techniques, proper guitar placement and posture, including many other prerequisites to help you progress to the more advanced courses. Sample lessons include Guitar Tuning and Set Up and How to Read Tab.
Phase 2: Intermediate or Genre Teaching. Don’t let the title intimidate you. This is basically an improved version of the previous phase with a few add-ons thrown in. Apart from learning about various scales, modes and similar guitar playing theories to take your know-how to a higher level, you’ll also be trained to apply them effectively in your genre or musical style of choice. Fingerpicking, Playing Lead and Rhythm as well as Barre and Power Chords are just some of the lessons you’ll encounter in this phase.
Phase 3: Learning Songs. This is what makes Jamplay a popular choice among aspiring guitarists and musical enthusiasts looking for extensive online video guitar lessons. After you’ve covered all the guitar playing essentials, you’ll be coached how to smartly combine the stuff you’ve learned together and start to play songs. You’ll be required to apply the lessons and techniques you’ve brushed up on right from the start.
What makes Jamplay awesome?
Jamplay, to date, has one of the most extensive instructional video guitar databases available online. Highlighting a top-notch collection of over 450 hours of comprehensive lessons, zeroing in on the courses you want to improve on – from basic guitar essentials to modal and scalar theories – is simply a breeze. Here are some other cool benefits you’ll be in for when you sign up for membership:
- Variety of musical lessons and genres. Apart from structuring its courses to accommodate every aspiring guitarist with articles and lessons updated weekly, Jamplay also offers different styles of guitar and music to effectively cater to various user genre preferences. From blues to classical, country to heavy metal, as well as jazz to rock, its vast volume of information can impress even the most demanding students of all skill levels.
- High Definition (HD) online videos and money-back guarantee. Quality is one of Jamplay’s best assets. Each of the videos is filmed in high definition and runs for 40 minutes in average. Segmented into individual chapters for easy browsing and navigation, every clip features multiple camera angles and shots as well as image stills to emphasize important points and other significant details. Just to take the wow factor even higher, the lessons have accompanying quick guides so you can effectively assess how well you performed during a particular course. Moreover, Jamplay comes with a 7-day full money-back guarantee, in case you are not completely satisfied with the program.
- Progress tracking made easy. You’ll instantly get access to an in-site interface where you can manually track your progress on each lesson to give you a heads up on which ones you’ve started, mastered, and still need to work on. Apart from that, you are also furnished with a web-based notepad so you can keep important notes you can check out at a future time when needed. Downloading chord charts, tablatures and other materials that go with each lesson to your computer is also a cinch so that you can review and work on them at your own pace.
- Competitive pricing and diverse support program. With its current monthly membership plan of $19.95, a quarterly plan of $49.95 and an annual plan of $139.95, signing up for Jamplay is absolutely much cheaper than a private guitar instructor. You’ll also get access to an extensive printable chord library, backing tracks catalog, scale library, a thorough lick and riff database and other online support programs to effectively help you progress from one lesson to another without a hitch.
- Easy teacher selection and live instructor Q and A. Besides helping you work your way through entire sets of lessons and techniques, you are also entitled to 12 hours of live webcam sessions where you can learn to play guitar in real-time in front of your teacher. Jamplay instructors also hold weekly, live Q and A sessions where students can send in questions and are, in turn, provided with video responses from the teachers. Just in case you are not satisfied with your progress or you think that you’re not completely compatible with your instructor’s genre or musical perspective, you can easily ask for another one to guide you through the learning phases.
What makes Jamplay not so awesome?
While Jamplay’s style and approach might be a bit more diverse than other online video courses, it isn’t a magic bullet that can instantly turn you into a proficient guitar player as soon as you sign up for membership. It also has some minor disadvantages that may hamper your progress as an aspiring guitarist as enumerated below:
- Information overload. With an astounding selection of more than 20,000 minutes’ worth of content and various musical tools, getting the knack of lessons and techniques with Jamplay can be a bit overwhelming. Although the site is very much organized to make room for all skill levels and musical preferences, it is so easy to get distracted by all the other stuff you can get access to.
- Constrained site connectivity. The absence of downloadable courses is another Jamplay drawback. You have to be regularly connected to the internet to make the most of the course you are focusing on, which makes reception a bit tough for students with limited access to worldwide web. Since it only offers completely Internet-based courses, Jamplay could be problematic for some users.
Jamplay is arguably one of the most recognized online guitar lesson programs these days. With its well-structured lessons for all skill levels, almost unlimited number of musical styles and genres from blues to heavy metal to learn, as well as its unique built-in progress report that keeps you on track where you currently stand as a guitar player, signing up for Jamplay is highly recommended. Top it off with perhaps the lowest membership plans when it comes to online video guitar lessons and you’ve definitely got yourself a superb choice.