Is this online guitar training program worth the monthly subscription?
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Last Updated: June 2021
A Quick Review of JamPlay’s Guitar Lessons Membership
Here’s a quick overview of what we think about JamPlay. We get more in depth below.
- $19.95 per Month (Get 10% Off!) or
- $159.95 Yearly
- $299.95 Yearly PRO Level (Includes Extras)
- 30 Day Money Back Guarantee
Overall Rating: 5/5
“Jamplay is probably the best online guitar lesson program available on the internet.
There are SO many different types of lessons you’re able to learn whatever you want – different styles, skills and songs.
Totally worth the price. If you want to learn guitar effectively, this is the way!“
- 6 to 12 weeks for initial training (beginners) + a lifetime of various styles/skills training
- Self-taught, so depends on your own pace
- 4 Phases + Artist Series and Extras
- Lessons for Beginners – for complete novices to self-taught guitarists
- Learn Your Preferred Styles and Skills
- Learn Songs
- Learn Songwriting
- Artist Series – Learn the specific styles of your favorite guitarist
- Performances/Concerts/Interviews/Lick&Riff Library
- Pick genres or style to focus on (R&B, Rock, Folk Music, etc)
- Pick skill to focus on (Speed, Lead, Singing & Playing, etc)
- Extras Included in PRO Level Membership: 1-on-1 consultation, 7 different guitar “toolkits” for guitar playing mastery.
Skill Level: Beginners to Advanced Players and Experts
- Affordable Cost – Yearly Price Offers Bigger Savings Over GuitarTricks (Plus Get 10% Off With the Link Above)
- 30 Day Risk Free Trial
- Bridges Gap Between Private/Online Tutorials Through Live Lessons
- Mobile-Ready – Watch on Phone/Tablet Easily
- Learn to Play Your Preferred Style Of Music
- Live Workshop Archive
- Weekly Practice Routines
- Advanced Skills (like riffs/licks, speed, singing while playing, etc)
- Bonus materials: jam tracks, games, community and much more
- A LOT of material to go through with multiple instructors
- Difficult to know where to start, who to watch and where to go next
- Lots of songs to learn, but needs more funk/soul/r&b
Buy JamPlay If…
- You are a complete beginner and want the best lessons online
- You play guitar and want to improve specific “pro” skills
- You want to master a specific style/genre of music
- You want to sing and play the guitar together (exclusive lesson!)
- You want to learn from real musicians and HUGE names in music
- You want the best of both worlds (online lesson and private tutoring)
My Story With JamPlay
Before we get into the details of what comes with a JamPlay membership, I want to give you my story.
My honest opinion is that JamPlay is one of the best ways to learn to play the guitar that I have ever tried – and I’ve tried quite a few (from private teachers to online lessons).
Personally, I’m not the biggest fan of private teachers – they’re expensive and they aren’t as versatile in their style/skill as what’s available online.
When I found JamPlay, I fell in love with the program.
I LOVE MUSIC
I have always been a music lover, and eventually I want to be able to play a large variety of instruments. My first instrument ever was a guitar.
And I wanted to learn how to play the guitar before anything else in music. I was gonna be a rock star.
Unfortunately, when I started taking lessons my excitement died out quickly.
This S**t Sucks…
The private lessons from a guitar teacher were boring and dry. The practice was tedious and uninspiring. And, worst of all, I had no idea where all of this was going – what am I trying to accomplish here?
I’m tryna be a rockstar, dammit…
How could I be excited when I was forced to play boring songs I didn’t care to learn and aimlessly practice with no vision or idea of how this would take me to my end goal?
Nope – that’s not what I needed.
Sure.. you gotta learn the basics at first. But you want to keep the excitement of being able to play your favorite songs SOONER than later. You want to know it will all be worth it.
Private lessons from traditional teachers just wasn’t offering that…
Needless to say, that didn’t last long and I quit.
Now remember, I was 10ish when I started… YouTube wasn’t around then.
But I wanted to master the guitar one day. I wanted to play the songs I liked and not something I had ZERO interest it.
It was supposed to be fun, right? There had to be something better.
The Beauty of the Internet
Eventually, I decided I should try to learn how to play the proper way again. By this time, YouTube lessons were starting to get made more and more so I learned a bit for free through the internet.
It was cool, but nothing serious. It wasn’t enough – I wasn’t progressing the way I was hoping to.
(Even today, the free lessons on YouTube can be a great start, but they’re not enough to REALLY learn properly)
So I decided to take the next step. At one point I tried out some online singing lessons and liked them. So I thought, there must be something there for instruments too.
Eventually I found something called Guitar Tricks. And so I started learning fundamentals and poking around some popular songs.
But soon after that I found JamPlay.
And damn was I glad I did.
I hadn’t heard of them before, so I decided to check it out. It seemed like exactly what I was looking for.
I took the plunge and got access to the program on the monthly plan. It seemed expensive at first (cheaper than private lessons, but still… an ongoing subscription?)
Soon enough I learned why it was a subscription – the amount of new content and lessons being added is WILD.
If you ask me now, with all that JamPlay offers, I think it’s UNDERPRICED!
On my first look, everything looked professional with super high-quality videos. What was even better is they’ve got some great names behind the training (for example, Steve Stevens from Billy Idol has a masterclass in the member’s area).
I was stoked…
Learning the Proper Way
When I got access to the program, I was eager to start immediately. It was impressive, but a little overwhelming.
They just have so much stuff that I found it hard to pick where to start.
I didn’t know if I should go with this trainer or that trainer. This set of beginner lessons or that set.
When I finally dove in (I just picked a beginner series randomly) I found that the way the lessons were laid out made sense. And they dove right into playing after briefly explaining the basics (I’m not gonna lie – I got flashbacks of my private lessons at that point).
But it was a little better this time around.
I could see where I was going thanks to the JamPlay members area. I had the motivation to get through the basics because I could immediately jump between the basics and stuff that interested me (learning songs from Metallica/RATM/SOAD and a bunch of R&B/Funk/Soul styles).
Now, you don’t have to be like me and start right at the beginning. You can choose wherever you want to start – dive right into learning a particular skill, style, or song if you want.
That makes it great for intermediate and advanced guitarists as well as beginners.
The JamPlay Learning Experience
I really liked the fact that you could learn however you wanted, whenever you wanted and wherever you wanted.
You can use the program’s mobile video streaming on your phone or tablet and get up to 720 HD video.
Learning at your own pace is so much better than having someone force you down a certain path.
Like I said, I was jumping between fundamentals and songs/skills/styles. It was great.
Of course, you still need to be disciplined if you really want to get better.
Sometimes I’d miss practicing for a few days but didn’t have to worry about some teacher giving me a headache about it. And if I had extra time, I could move forward faster than I’d be able to with a private guitar tutor.
The Best Part
For me, the best part of the program is the vastness of the video training database coupled with the ability to have 1-on-1 consultations when you need (for an additional cost).
It wasn’t just about learning basic guitar techniques through a screen with no human interaction.
With Jamplay you have a bunch of different rabbit holes you can explore at your leisure – you can connect with other guitarists and get private tutoring when you need it.
I could learn how I wanted in whatever order I wanted whenever I felt like it. And if I was stuck, I could get some real help.
It was just dope af.
Ups and Downs, Back and Forth
Since I know music and the basics of theory, I raced through the fundamental sections and went straight to learning a bit about the skills and styles I wanted.
I quickly learned I should go back eventually and do the fundamental stuff PROPERLY… Apparently learning the basics is important (lol).
I’m not gonna lie – some of the fundamental stuff is dry and boring but it’s over quickly.
All in all it’s a solid program for any aspiring guitarist to try.
With their money-back guarantee I literally had nothing to lose, but I was NOT disappointed and have been a member ever since.
The Downside of JamPlay’s Lessons
The types of songs available to learn are good, but it kept me wanting for more.
They have a lot of rock and country music, but not enough in other genres like Funk/Soul/R&B. And I think the company would benefit by adding more modern songs into their lessons.
Having said that, there’s tons of classics to choose from, but they need to up the number of “recent” songs they cover.
Also, a lot of the songs and styles/techniques often crossover between genres, so you’re still learning what you need to learn for your particular preferences.
Even though one month is PLENTY of time to test and sample all of the content of Jamplay (they have a 30 day money back guarantee), be aware there’s A LOT of stuff there.
And it can be pretty overwhelming.
How to Make the Most of the Program
If you decide to try them out, explore the members area thoroughly first to see all that’s there.
Then make a plan of attack of what to do first and what to do next. And stick to your plan. (It’s ok to switch back and forth between all the shiny objects you’ll find as long as you stay dedicated and consistent with learning/practice).
Adjust as necessary, and if you find it just not for you, cancel within 30 days and you’ll get your money back.
My Personal Results
I, obviously, did NOT cancel during my trial and have had member area access for years now.
As far as guitar lessons go – I think JamPlay is WELL worth the cost.
And even though I suck at keeping up with practice and learning, by sticking with JamPlay’s methods I have seen some big improvements in my ability to play guitar.
Personally, I like the program’s overall approach and teaching style.
It wasn’t boring and dry (mostly), and the prospect of learning REALLY cool shit keeps you excited throughout the basics/fundamentals.
And whether it was finger movements, fret movements, or my overall playing ability, Im able to pick up concepts and get better quickly (so long as I actually practice!).
There are a couple of online courses that I have also tried, and JamPlay is one of the best (if not the best) guitar tutorial online.
I HIGHLY RECOMMEND trying them out risk-free for 30 days (plus if you like it and subscribe through that link you’ll get 10% off any plan).
If it’s not for you, you can always cancel, get a refund and try something else.
They also have bass guitar lessons if you’re interested.
The regular membership is great for anyone that’s trying to effectively learn how to play the acoustic OR electric guitar.
The lessons cater to both types of playing and the nuances each carries.
You owe it to yourself to try a really solid guitar training program if you love music and have a drive to learn an instrument.
JamPlay Membership – What Do You Get?
When you first login to your Jamplay members area you’re asked to fill out some questions so the program can be more customized to your needs.
Definitely fill in the first 2 pages of info for best results, but it’s all pretty optional.
Review of JamPlay Members Area
Once you’re in the main members area you’re shown several sections – your progress so far, new courses, upcoming live workshops, community board and Q&A section, the latest news and more.
The program also tracks your progress as you complete various lessons. It’ll allow you to start where you left off easily.
Jamplay also offers flexibility. You can choose which concepts to learn first and focus on what interests you depending on your skill level.
If you want to master the instrument, you can learn everything here at JamPlay. And their use of HD videos makes for more effective teaching/learning.
Different Areas of Interest
You’ll notice in the pic above that there are several headings – My JamPlay, Lessons, Live, Tools, Community, Extras.
The My JamPlay area is where you’ll find the tracking tools for your progress. You can view progress reports, edit your profile and see any any jampoints/badges you’ve earned.
Jampoints – earned by participating on the site – will be used in the future for special features/privileges, but it’s just in beta right now. Badges are earned when you master a certain skill on guitar.
Under “Lessons” you’ll see that the program is broken down into four initial phases.
- Beginners – the fundamentals you need to know as a complete beginner
- Genres & Skills – specialized lessons to improve specific guitar skills
- Songs – this is where you’ll learn how to play popular songs properly
- Songwriting – the pinnacle; where you’ll learn to make your own music on guitar
Under the Live section you’ll find current live courses as well as a schedule of upcoming events and an archive of past ones.
The Tools section is pretty sick too – it’s got chord/scale libraries, guitar and bass tuners, training games, a metronome and JamTracks – backing tracks you can play along to.
The extras section is nothing too crazy – they’ve got some monthly giveaways, bonus packs and you can schedule your 1-on-1s.
Phase 1 – Beginner Guitar Lessons
Phase 1 covers the fundamentals – the beginner lessons. They are divided into 3 sections:
- Acoustic Guitar
- Electric Guitar
- Bass Guitar
Note: Bass Guitar Lessons Require a Separate Subscription. Click Here to Get 10% off Bass Lessons too.
If you’ve never picked up a guitar before or you’re still very new – this is where you want to start.
There are a lot of different beginner lessons, separate by instructor but you don’t have to do them ALL.
There are short descriptions of each beginner lesson under the title so you’ll be able to tell which lessons are most appropriate for you.
For example, you could start with the fundamental basics (strumming, pick technique, etc), and then go into a beginner lesson that’s more song-based. Or maybe start with more song-based learning and then jump to lessons more geared towards a finger style guitarist.
It’s totally up to you.
I would, however recommend taking the lesson on “how to practice” what you learn – it’s only 11 minutes and very valuable.
Phase 2 – Genre Specific and Skill Based Lessons
Phase 2 is where JamPlay starts to really shine. They have a vast collection of music styles to learn that is just incredible.
Whichever genre(s) you choose to play, you will be in a gold mine of tutorials.
If you want to learn more than one style, you can do so at your own pace. JamPlay doesn’t limit you to one style; you can learn them all if you want.
Beyond styles and genres, there are tons of lessons here on specific skills that will help you master the instrument. Sure it will take a while, but if you want, JamPlay can help you become an absolute guitar playing pro – versatile and capable of playing anything, anywhere.
Genre-Based Lessons Available as of June 2019
- R&B & Soul
- Acoustic Rock
- Hawaiian Slack Key
I told you there were tons…
While going through the music genres you like, you can also focus on skills and specializations.
Guitar Skill-Based Lessons Available as of June 2019
- Speed and Technique
- Helpers & Tips (hammer-ons, pull-offs, rakes, harmonics)
- Singing With Guitar (my personal fave)
- Reading Music & Rhythms
- Lead Concepts & Techniques
- Theory & Improvisation
- 12 String Guitar Playing
- Rhythm Training
- Ear Training
- Studio Skills & Engineering
- Instrument Care & Maintenance
If you check the descriptions of the guitar skills, you’ll notice they have a module on Studio Skills – a lesson you won’t see in other programs. That’s one of the many reasons why I say JamPlay is one of the most comprehensive courses available online.
It’s not just because of the number of videos but because of the variety of lessons you can learn. I can honestly say that this is an all-encompassing course.
Phase 3 – Song Lessons
Let’s be real, Phase 3 is what we’re all here for!
This is where we get to learn actual songs that we actually might like and want to play!
There are some GREAT songs here and new ones added often. Tons of classics to learn.
However, as mentioned earlier, the songs you can learn across different genres is limited.
Lots of Rock, Metal and Country. Virtually no R&B/Funk.
Personally I wanted to learn a lot more R&B/Soul and Funk guitar. But the only song I could find in the giant list of songs was a James Brown’s Super Bad Super Slick.
That was disappointing, but not a deal-breaker. The real place where the R&B/Funk style is taught is in the style/skill section (i.e. Phase 2).
In all honesty, this shouldn’t stop you from learning some of these songs. You can learn from their online videos along with guitar tabs to follow the lessons easily. And sometimes there is style overlap between genres of music. So a rock song might use an R&B lick or technique.
It’s a good idea to learn at least some of these songs even if they’re not in your favorite genre.
Here are some of the popular artists/bands they cover:
- The Beatles
- Fallout Boy
- Collective Soul
- Three Days Grace
- James Brown (only one song though)
- Willie Nelson
- Jimi Hendrix
- ZZ Top
And a whole hell of a lot more. This alone might be worth the price of membership for some of you readers out there.
As of the time of writing this review they have at least 1 song in every genre of music they cover that you can learn (I think). So, there’s no need to worry. You still have many different songs to learn, and they are continually adding more.
Phase 4 – Songwriting Lessons
This is a pretty cool new section in JamPlay that was added recently. In this section there are several instructors with different lessons on how to write full songs, now that you know how to play the guitar properly.
The section is divided into two – electric guitar songwriting and acoustic guitar songwriting – but there’s only 1 electric lesson at the time of this writing.
Learning how to write songs is a super important part of being a musician. There’s more to it than finding a chord or two and coming up with a quick pattern. These lessons are super helpful for any musician, so I’m glad to see JamPlay actually include it in their updated members area.
Beyond the 4 Phases of JamPlay
After going through the lessons in the first 4 phases, you will get some extra stuff that will fire up your interest even more. They don’t just stop at the lessons, you know.
It is an entire system designed to help you master the guitar.
The Artist Series
This section is too damn cool. Probably my FAVORITE section of the entire membership area. Here you will learn from some of the music industry’s best guitarists who will show you their unique styles.
From major music industry session players to members of some of the biggest bands in the world, you will learn only from the experts.
Who would have thought you‘d be able to learn and play with rock legend Steve Stevens from Billy Idol? Or Collective Soul’s Joel Kosche?
With JamPlay, that’s possible.
But there’s no set order of these lessons, which is why it’s separate from the initial 4 phases. You should have a solid handle on how to play guitar before you dive into this section.
In the Style of…
There may be some lessons that are not taught by the artists themselves, but these are lessons taught by qualified instructors who will show you how to play like these legendary artists.
The artists covered in this section are:
- Tom Morello
- Jimi Hendrix
- Joe Satriani
- David Glimour
- Carlos Santana
- Steve Vai
- Merle Travis
- Tommy Emmanuel
- The Rolling Stones
- Eric Clapton
- The Edge
- John Mayer
- Dave Matthews
- Keith Urban
- George Harrison
- Wes Montgomery
You wouldn’t want to miss some of these awesome stuff. These can serve as your motivation to get through the basic lessons immediately and continue until you get to this section.
Exclusive on JamPlay – Live Lessons
The Live Lessons section is another precious gem that comes with your monthly or yearly subscription. Here you will have the chance to have daily sessions directly with JamPlay instructors through text chat and webcam-to-webcam video streams.
The live lessons are great because they literally take the place of having a private guitar teacher right next to you. Often these live webcam sessions are “open discussion” which means you can come with questions you have on difficult topics. It’s just as good as having a real live guitar teacher. That’s part of the reason JamPlay is so helpful – it’s the best of both worlds.
Beyond that there is an archive of live lessons from the past. And they cover various topics like:
- Basic Chords and Cadences
- Fingerstyle Blues
- Playing Over Chords
- Practicing for Real Music
- Making Modal Melodies
- and More.
If you still think that online lessons can’t be as effective as private tutorials, think again.
JamPlay does a great job of bridging that gap – especially with the new 1-on-1 consultations you can book for an extra fee.
Bass Guitar Lessons
I have not learned how to play bass guitar yet (but I will soon), so there’s nothing much for me to say here. Aside from lessons on playing acoustic and electric guitars, they also offer lessons on playing bass guitar.
BUT – the bass guitar lessons are actually an extra subscription and do not come included with the normal JamPlay membership.
There are more bells and whistles included with your subscription.
You can use custom reports to monitor your progress. See how far you have gone and how fast you have learned.
As part of the JamPlay community, thousands of other guitar enthusiasts are there to help you out.
In my opinion, you will find this as the most comprehensive guitar library online in one place. Aside from the fret-board diagram, you will be able to see almost any guitar scale in any key. Plus they’ve got tons of riffs/licks you can learn and build off of.
These are interactive games to help you learn and master the guitar.
Some of the games included are:
• Music Notation Quizzes
• Fretboard Memorization
• Pitch Recognition
• Note Identification
Everything you need to learn is here. I found it fun to go through. I may still be in the process of learning, but I have already learned so much by just going through the first few lessons. I can truly say that my skills have greatly improved.
Of course, practice is necessary and also something that’s completely up to you. But I’m telling you, you have to practice daily. The more you practice, they faster you’ll learn.
If you’re looking for a program that will teach you all the essentials in mastering the instrument, and you want something that’s easy to use, then I suggest you get this program.
I think it’s better than the alternative – Guitar Tricks. Although that’s a good program too, JamPlay just outshines it in my opinion.
Now that our review of JamPlay is finished let us know what you think. Have you tried JamPlay or any other online guitar lessons? Share your comments, questions and experiences in the comment section below. Did you find this article useful? Please share it on facebook, twitter, google+ or anywhere else!
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