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Don’t Be Nervous to Play in a Guitar Store

Do you dread heading down to your local guitar store?

"What do I do if I'm too shy to play in front of people?" and "What do I do if I'm too scared to play in a guitar store because people will make fun of me?" are two questions I’ve been asked a lot lately, and they both have the same answer: Those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind.

Let’s eliminate some potential fears, starting with the guitar store employees. Trust me when I say this: They don’t hear you. If I’ve learned one thing from my interactions and conversations over the years with these guys and gals, one thing that’s been unanimous is the fact that they’ve all learned to tune out the noisy atmosphere of their workplace.

The goal of a guitar store is for you to buy their products, so you’ll never catch flack for testing out gear. If you’re worried about other guitarists in the store who are “better” than you, you should understand that real musicians never look down on anybody for being at a different skill level.

Here’s a mindset I take when I go to a guitar store: I walk in there like everything in the store is mine, and I’m the only person in the entire room. The only real way you can get some stink-eyes from people is if you’re playing too loud—it doesn’t matter if you’re the best or the worst guitar player ever—you will be mocked and hated. With the stress of life taking many forms, guitar should be your escape, not part of that stress.

Now, go out and try that awesome guitar you’re probably not going to buy! You just might have a good time.

Tyler Larson is the founder of the guitar-centric brand Music is Win. His insightful, uncomplicated guitar lessons and gear demonstrations along with entertaining, satirical content about life as a musician receive tens of millions of video views per month across social media. Tyler is also the creator of the extremely popular online guitar learning platform, Guitar Super System. A graduate of Berklee College of Music, Tyler has been teaching guitar for over a decade and operates a production studio in Nashville, TN.