I would estimate that there are literally hundreds of thousands of guitar related websites on the Internet, with a few hundred popping up every month. While many of these sites will have something valuable to add, I tried to collect the best guitar websites, the ones that I think will be most useful to my guitar students.
Now this is nowhere a definitive list or guitar directory, but it's a good start. If you find a site that you think is innovative and worthy of being called one of the best guitar related sites on the net, than please leave a comment and if I agree, I'll add it to this list. Oh, and don't just spam comment links. If you don't explain why you think your proposed guitar site is awesome, I'll just delete your comment.
Instead of just presenting an insanely long list, I've separated the sites into categories to make everything easier to digest and find. Click on a category and you'll magically be taken to that part of the page.
Higher quality guitar lesson sites will offer some free lessons, but charge a recurring fee for access to all tutorials and content. The Internet has evolved from simply providing video lessons. The best sites will offer added value stuff, like interactive guitar learning games and guitar tools, so stuff that makes a guitar student's life easier. Here is a list of the best paid guitar lesson websites:
GuitarTricks.com is a video guitar lesson website with literally thousands of lessons. They have lots of teachers teaching guitar lessons in all genres and difficulty levels. They also have several online guitar tools which guitarists will find useful.
Presently, they cost $14.95 per month, or if you pay for a year in advance, the monthly rate goes down to $10.75 per month. They also have a 2 week free trial offer.
JamPlay.com is very similar to GuitarTricks.com, the biggest difference is that JamPlay has better website designers and video editors 🙂 So basically they are prettier, but otherwise are very similar. I actually have a post on the difference between JamPlay and GuitarTricks to set things straight.
They cost $19.95 per month, or if you pay a year in advance, it the membership comes out to $11.66 per month. Chump change for the amount of content you get from the site in my opinion, the same goes for GuitarTricks.com.
LickLibrary.com is another video guitar lesson site, but their material is more advanced than the previous 2 sites. They have lots of DVDs as well, which can be purchased online or in music stores.
Their lessons can also be viewed online for GBP10 per month, which is around $15 right now.
And last but not least, TheGuitarLesson.com, a video tutorial website focusing on beginner guitarists. The video lessons are very easy to follow, since each tutorial has on screen animated tablature and chord diagrams, so it's great for beginners.
There are several pricing plans starting at the $1 three day trial, $9 monthly membership, or the 9 month membership which comes out to $6 per month.
Remember the saying, "You get what you pay for!" Well, it's not always true. There are some guitar lesson sites out there that offer quality, relevant tutorials without asking for money. Of course, everyone's got to make a living, so these sites generate income through asking for donations, selling products, or recommending other sites for a commission. But either way, the main product of the following sites is totally free, so here are some of the best free guitar learning websites:
The video lessons you'll find on justinguitar.com are not just useful, but structured as well. He has courses aimed at different genres and difficulties as well. Of course, the production value isn't as high as with the paid sites, but the educational value is on par.
You can also purchase DVDs and books from Justin if you wish.
GuitarLesson.com is a good free website for anyone looking for video guitar lessons, the only downside is that their tutorials aren't structured as well as Justin's. But the material is still valuable, so another tool in your arsenal.
They also sell instructional DVDs, for example, you can find a review of their blues course here.
Of course, when you learn the guitar, you'll want to play your favorite songs as well. Why else would you bother? (Other than looking cool of course...) So anyhow, there are many tabs websites out there. The free tablature sites are community based, meaning any given song is tabbed and uploaded by a member of the community, so any regular person. This will mean that a lot of the tabs will be bad, but thankfully, the best tablature sites have rating systems, where other people can vote on how accurate and useful the given tablature is. This saves you from looking over 89 versions of a song's tablature.
So without further ado, here are the best guitar tablature websites:
Ultimate-guitar.com is the biggest tablature website on the internet. If the song's been written, you'll find the tabs for it on Ultimate Guitar. In fact, you'll probably find several tablature version on the site to any give song.
The cool thing about 911tabs.com is that it scrapes the tablature pages of every tablature website, and returns all of them for you. So let's say the version of Smells Like Teen Spirit you find on UltimateGuitar is not to your liking, hit up 911tabs, and a search will reveal the relevant page on every tablature website there is. It can be overwhelming, but it beats going to each site one by one.
Guitar Pro tabs
This Guitar Pro tabs site offers what it says, free tabs for the Guitar Pro software. You can also purchase their entire database of tabs for $9, giving you an endless supply of tabs, enough for several lifetimes.
Awesome online guitar tools can be created thanks to the modern web technology of today. There are tools to replace not just the software you would otherwise have to download, but also physical hardware. Not to mention guitar teachers...
All right, so here are the most useful guitar tools you'll find online:
The interactive guitar chord and scale generator & finder on chordbook.com is unmatched in user experience. It used to be a Flash based website, but they recently converted it to HTML5, which means it'll work perfectly on mobile devices as well. Way to keep up with technology!
Music Learning Tools
Ear training, scale training, interval training, key training. You name it, MusicLearningTools.net has got it. This site is really useful if you want to improve your ear training and test your knowledge of notes. Again, this is a Flash site, so no-no to mobile devices.
MusicTheory.net is similar to the above site, but this one includes some guitar related exercises as well, such as tests to help you learn the fretboard, etc. This site is not made with Flash, so it should run perfectly on all mobile devices, which is great!
If you don't feel like downloading drum tracks, or want to create something of your own, you'll definitely want to have a look at the Monkey Machine. I don't know why it's named as it is, but the device itself is really useful and fun. It's a free online drum machine, you can easily add all kinds of drum sounds and create a custom, looping drum track to play along with.
GuitarTabCreator.com is one of those really simple, yet really useful sites that make your life easier. You can create perfect monospace tablature very easily, since all of the formatting is done for you. If you ever set out to create monospace tabs, you'll know that formatting would be the hardest part of it.
If you're craving some news on your favorite bands, guitar brands, interviews, or anything from the guitar world, there are several guitar sites that will suit your appetite for guitar news. I can't really too many specific things about these sites, since they all post guitar related news stories, so this is a simple list of the best guitar news sites on the web:
Guitar World News
Guitar World news, a site on guitar news.
Music Radar News
Music Radar also has a section dedicated to guitar related news stories.
Ultimate Guitar News
The same goes for Ultimate Guitar news.
There are many technical aspects of the guitar, which guitarists of intermediate-advanced levels will be interested in. These range from custom rigs, guitar wiring, changing pickups, all the way to building your own amps and guitars. As you would expect, the Internet has info on this as well, you just need to know where to find it.
Have you ever thought how cool it would be to build your own guitar? Or maybe modify a few things on your existing guitar? Well, if you have, than BuildYourGuitar.com should be your first stop. You'll also find an exhaustive list of guitar building links, books, videos, sites on this website.
Guitar.com/rigs (formerly GuitarGeek.com) is an awesome site for intermediate/advanced guitarists looking for their tone. I don't really know where they get their info from, but you'll find the exact rig specifications of loads of famous guitarists and bands. The diagrams look really nice as well. This is more of a novelty site, since I doubt anyone is going to buy the exact rig of an artist, but it's interesting to browse nevertheless.
Not everything is in the Cloud (yet), there are a couple of really useful guitar software that you need to download, install, and use on your computer. I'm guessing these will be in the Cloud in 10 years time as well, but for now, here are my picks on the best guitar software:
GuitarPro is hands down the best guitar tablature editing/playback software available. The possibilities you have at your fingertips is just huge, not just for composing, but also for learning your favorite songs. Guitar Pro also has built in tools, such as a metronome, tuner, scale/chord finder. Check out this tutorial on getting started with Guitar Pro to see why this is such a useful tool.
eMedia Guitar Method
The eMedia guitar method is an interactive guitar instruction program aimed at total beginner guitarists. The program is pretty old, it could use a facelift, but the material in it will be really useful to people just picking up the guitar, who don't want to learn from online lessons or a guitar teacher. eMedia also made other guitar method software, one for intermediate guitar, the other for blues, but they weren't nearly as good as their beginner program.
If you are interested in this program, you can buy it cheaper on Amazon.com, than on the eMedia website. Just so you know 😉
If something is just plain cool, you gotta let people know about it, right? Yes! These sites don't really, or more precisely, don't completely fall into any of the set categories, but you need to see them.
Guitar Shred Show
To tell you the truth, I don't really know why GuitarShredShow.com was created, but it's super cool nonetheless 🙂 It's hard to describe, you'll just have to see for yourself!
Guitar backing track
Playing along to your favorite songs is much funner than playing just your guitar, that's why GuitarBackingTrack.com was created. You'll be able to download the guitar backing tracks to thousands of really famous songs. Some backing tracks are better, some are worse, as this is a community based site as well, where people can send in their backing tracks.
WikiLoops.com is a site where you can download all sorts of backing tracks and loops created by other people. Unlike GuitarBackingTrack.com, these backing tracks are not song specific. You have a great search form, where you can pick your genre, time signature, tempo, and be presented with free backing tracks you can use as you see fit. The only thing I'm really missing from the search form is a musical key selection option, so if I want to get a backing track in the key of A, this would not be possible at the moment. Maybe they'll add this feature.
All right, that's my time, not it's your turn. Which sites did I miss? Please leave them in the comments below. Make sure you leave at least 1-2 paragraph long description of why you think your proposed site should be on this list.