Choosing the Right instrument

ClarinetAt Christmas time I see so often, parents are excited that their children have expressed an interest in a musical instrument so they go to {insert local retail store name here} and by a Guitar.  What usually happens is that it is either unplayable or the wrong size.  But as parents we would do anything to inpire our children, right?  At Morbyus Music we like to make things easy for you by providing advice on how to purchase the perfect instrument.  It's an art really.  There are a few things to consider.

1. AGE
 If your son or daughter is under the age of  7 and is not really motivated to practice, I would choose an instrument that is easier to be successful.  For example, most of our 3-5 year old students begin with piano, because you push a button, essentially, and you hear beautiful music.  With Guitar, there is a small amount of discomfort and you are getting used to pressing down on the strings and it is sometimes a turn off for the young rocker, Violin Bowing is difficult as well because it uses delicate fine motor skills that many 3-5 year olds don't have the patience to learn.  And lets not get started on the woodwind and Brass!
Nope your 3 year old wants to learn violin and will have it no other way.  There is no convincing her otherwise.  Good.  That means she is devoted to that instrument and will probly be patient enough to learn because the love is there.  At this point I say, go for it.
When we think of guitar, we don't necessarily think of the size.  Generally a good music store will ask who the guitar or other instrument is for and they have sizing charts and can help you with the purchase of an instrument.  We can help you as well.  Email us with any questions you have  For many instruments, size is a necessity because the student cannot reach and play successfully.  Ideally we want them to be successful from the get go because that motivates them to continue.  That self motivation is extremely important as they are beginning a new instrument.
Before you spend $500 to purchase that shiny red drumset, think to yourself, "am I going to be able to motivate my child to practice:"  Most instruments have "squeaks" when you are learning them.  If you possess ear plugs then you are fine, if not, purchasing a good pair would benefit your life as your student is entering the beginning stages of learning an instrument.  Depending on the instrument the "squeaks" can be mild or similar to fingernails on the chalkboard.  Just be prepared that everyone messes up and know that with practice, the squeaky time will pass.  Let me put it simply, piano and guitar have the least painful squeaks.  Sometimes its good to start with one of those.  They can always switch.
BEWARE!  There are instruments out there on the internet that sell for very low prices.  I am price motivated and often look for the lowest price when shopping for something but I have found that low price generally means low quality and unplayable in the musical instrument field.  That is why we recommend instruments that are not the lowest price but are instruments that we have played and approve of.  Things to consider when you see that price.
1.Where was it made? If it says "made in China" or any other country that makes items cheaply then that is not the instrument for your beginning student.
2. Brand Name:  Look for the brand names, these are quality instruments (and some of them are made in China but they have the quality of the Brand Name).
Top Starter instruments are on our website  and contact us if you find a good deal and you want to bounce it off of someone before pressing the "pay now" button.  The most important thing for that beginning student is to have an instrument that the student can play successfully and thats why it is better to pay a little more for an instrument that is playable otherwise you'll be paying more than it's worth in repairs.
-This blog post was written by Instructor Shawna Morby on November 15, 2014