Hi, this is not really a luthier question, but still a guitar question, more or less..

Anyway, I  have been playing guitar off and on for 20 years now. 20 years ago, I took

some lessons to learn just the basics, and then have been on my own ever since.

I have always liked acoustic better than electric, but still I have usually had one of

each guitar, and have switched back and forth between the 2 of them. My question

is, should I just focus on one of them, and get good at it? Meaning, should I just

choose, say, the acoustic guitar, and focus on mastering how to play that?

I don't plan to be in a band, or anything like that. I play for personal enjoyment, but I

have hit a wall, so to speak, and am not getting any better with my playing.

I feel that jumping back and forth between the 2 guitars may be slowing my progress down.

Any thoughts on this?

Should I keep both guitars (acoustic and electric)?


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It depends on what you want to play: some stuff is equally playable on both, and other stuff is much better on one or the other, although crossover is always possible. If you're only playing at home, maybe a good flat top is the best all rounder, you can play most anything on one of them. But by all means have both if you like, the technique is slightly different from one to the other: every guitar type is different, solid body electric, arch top, flat top, classical, selmer-maccaferi jazz guitars etc etc. But, if you play regularly, you'll notice the improvement from one type to another, a kind of technology transfer :-)

When you sit down to play at home, decide what you'd like to play, and pick the guitar that suits that style direction best. I find that I always want to play different styles depending on my mood at the time. The main thing is to play as long as you have the time for, every day, and you'll get better automatically. Good luck!


A buddy of mine who is a Master Luthier has chosen a Parker Fly which he says covers the whole spectrum acoustic-electric

but I don't have a clue how he arrived at this conclusion.I'd get bored w/ one instrument so you oughta keep both IMO.

IMHO - Two guitars should not slow you down. It should rather inspire more playing. You may regret losing one or the other as time goes by. Tom

you know, something tells me that you are right, I think I will keep both

Thanks to all for your advice!


Find a good teacher who doesn't just hand you a sheet of tab and say "See you next week" and take a few lessons.


 I think that everyone that plays for very long hit a plateau and need something to inspire them. I've passed through several of them in my life and each time something different seemed to help me out of it. What I found is that I sometimes feel so much pressure to improve my guitar playing that I don't actually enjoy it as much as I used to . The stuff I know seems old and I get frustrated going through the learning curve of developing new stuff. One of the best ways I've found to help me through these times is to pick up something completely different. In my case I first moved to a mandolin simply because it was available. I'm not good but I still love to play around on it. Since them I've added a tenor banjo and a collection of ukulele's to my collection. ( I also have some tin whistles and such. )  I'm not particularly good on any of them but then that is actually the point. With these instruments I can give myself permission to be bad at it and have fun.

I recommend a ukulele for this,at least to begin with, because the instrument is easy to leave laying around without being in the way. This makes it easy for you to pick it up at odd moments which will probably add to your daily playing time. Besides that, the tuning interval between strings will feel comfortable even though the reentrant tuning WILL throw you for a loop which can be part of the point.  It's not another guitar yet it will feel familiar enough that you won't really need much in the way of "instruction".  I recommend a tenor or a concert sized instrument because they seem to be in the "sweet spot" for their sound and their scale isn't as "cramped" as the soprano. You can "noodle around" on one of these as you watch TV or any number of other moments around the house. You can even take it in the car and play at lights. (yeah, it happens.)  

  Anyway, the point is that playing around with another stringed instrument can help you find new things in your music and I've always found that it can transfer to my guitar playing.

BTW, I would NOT get rid of any of the guitars you have now. 

Reminds me of playing tennis - had the best and biggest meanest racquet money could buy and some really flash clothing and hot-shot shoes........absolutely crap player but.   I should have bought cheap gear and hired a coach with the copious amounts of left over money.   

Sell your car or your children into the slave trade and use the proceeds to get some good lessons.  Even the pros go for lessons from time to time to keep them sharp, fresh, inspired and up to date. 

This is, of course, only my opinion - I'm not really suggesting you sell your car.  Rusty. 

I don't disagree that lessons are an option, Rusty, but some of us just want to hit the ball around. Sometimes it's just about fun. Getting good at it is a side effect.It all depends on what you want. Want to be a pro? Pay a pro. Want to have fun? Flail away with what ever you got, be it the biggest meanest OR the cheap gear. Everybody's different.

Yeah Ned, I don't disagree with anything you say - but the dude inferred he wanted to get better at doing what he was doing - and getting some lessons and a different set of challenges to get oneself out of the musical rut we sometime find ourselves stuck in is one way I know of doing that, anyway,  it's a free world brother I was just answering the question. R.

Rusty,  I get you. Personally, I've never felt the need to find a Pro to help me but I've been motivated by spending some time with other players with different styles lots of times. 

I hope you're not really suggesting I sell my kid too!

Ned......My first post. I couldn't agree more. i wanted to mess around with a ukulele, but couldn't find one i liked, so i built  one from some mandolin wood i had laying around for years. After that i played nothing but the uke for about 6 months. I'm not sure why, but when i picked up the guitar again my guitar playing had improved. Not that it made great or anything like that, but it made me better. And before i knew what happened i had built a dozen of them, most of them given away. I've still got a few more to build for fiends, but they my have to wait a while,im kinda tired of building them 


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