Fender Play – 2021 Complete Review

Craig
| Last Updated: March 23, 2021

It has never been easier to learn how to play guitar. There are so many platforms available out there so the only concern is which one is right for you?

Well, in case you’re a complete beginner, have you heard of Fender Play maybe?

We think it might be the right choice for your start.

Photo credit: fender.com

Fender Play Online Guitar Lessons

What is Fender Play? 

Fender Play is an online learning app developed by Fender that provides you with the lesson for acoustic and electric guitar, ukulele, and bass guitar

When Was Fender Play Released?

Fender Play was released in 2017 and it has been growing ever since with both lessons and song libraries. Along with those sections, other instruments such as bass and ukulele were added to complete the offer and make it a bit different from the other online learning websites.

What Devices Can You Use Fender Play On?

Fender Play can be used on all types of devices available today - desktop, laptop, handheld devices and it supports Windows and Mac operating systems. The mobile app interface works exceptionally well on both Android and iOS devices and it’s a true showcase of how an online learning platform should be designed.

Who Provides the Lessons in Fender Play?

Despite the Fender Play promo text, teachers are not that well-known and they don’t belong to a world-class level. But, they do know and are fun to watch and are up to the task that has been given. They are mostly emerging artists and someone you can relate to.

Pros 

Here are some great reasons to take classes through Fender Play.

High-Quality Video Lessons and Interface

All the content is recorded professionally in 4K video quality and with multiple cameras covering all the angles you need to see what’s going on so we have to say that Fender did a great job on the visual part of their lessons. Teachers are also doing a good job within the given course, too.

The same goes for the interface - it’s very graphic and we love how everything is implemented, especially the support for handheld devices. You simply pick the instrument you’re interested in, select the appropriate genre and the website does the rest for you. And while the whole layout is so graphical, the real lessons interface is simplified focusing on the content instead of visual gimmicks. We appreciate this solution as it won’t make any distractions from the main reason you’re visiting this website in the first place.

Straightforward Lessons

Fenderplay content is focused on the practical part of playing. Some may call it “a modern approach” so you won’t learn a lot about music theory, but you will learn how to play many songs. This may be both pro and cons, but for beginners, it may occupy them much better instead of explaining that boring music theory that may even turn them away from playing the guitar.

Ideal for Beginners

All lessons are slimmed down into portions that beginners can digest. There are specific lessons that will teach you how to play a chord or strum without any genre-specific as those things are more or less universal.

Lessons may feel simplified, but, taken from the point of a complete newbie, it might be exactly what they need to make a great start and they will love all the tips and shortcuts they can learn within these lessons.

Affordable Membership

Something is satisfying in the fact that you can switch between different instruments within a single membership. 

Fender had in mind that their main audience is not so pro-oriented so they may appreciate learning the basics of more instruments instead. We can imagine someone trying out to play the ukulele and now they might feel confident to take on a real guitar. Thanks to Fender Play, they will be able to do that without any additional purchase.

And the additional 10% discount, if you apply for an annual membership, might be worth it if you’re about to purchase some new gear anytime soon.

Cons

While these are a good choice for most, here are some things to keep in mind:

More Professional Lessons Would Be Great

While the courses are fine for people who are just starting, more experienced players may find the lessons a bit short and vague. 

Even if you’re a newbie, it may keep you interesting for a couple of months, but, unless you have any urge to learn other instruments, we doubt you will keep visiting this website for a whole year. It simply lacks music theory and songwriting lessons and it’s a bit short on teachers at the moment as well.

Hopefully, Fender Play will expand its collection and deliver us some advanced lessons soon. They have a great base, all that is needed now is to upgrade the overall content.

Not Available in All Countries

Due to some very strange legal reasons, Fender Play is not available in all countries at the moment, so you should check it out before you read any further. We must say that this type of exclusive content feels odd, especially in the 21st century.

At least the check-up process is quite simple - applying for a free trial will show you an instant message if your country is on the list of countries where Fender Play works or not.

Types of Lessons By Fender Play

Fender Play Lessons are organized in several types:

Paths

This is the main part of the Fender Play content. All genres are organized into 5 skill levels and they advance as you progress through specific genres. Those paths combine exercises and some practical lessons so you will get to play a specific song from time to time just to check out your progress.

Songs

Besides theoretical courses, Fender Play provides you with the lessons that show you how to play a specific song or certain part from it under the Riffs category. At this moment, there are more than 700 songs and riff lessons available on Fender Play and this number is getting bigger every month.

Collections

Collections are pre-made playlists that cover a specific topic - whether it’s your urge to learn all the Rolling Stones songs at once or how to improve your lead guitar playing techniques or you need some to define some warm-up routine - collections might be a good thing to check out first.

Skills

Skills lessons focus on specific playing techniques for each instrument. You can find lessons for chords, various strumming, some genre pattern basics, exercises, and even some tone advice lessons.

When Would Fender Play Be The Best Choice?

Fender Play will be the best choice if you don’t have a single clue about guitars whether you already know how to play some other instrument or not. It will be a very friendly solution to make you learn all the basics, especially if you’re short on budget. 

Thanks to a monthly subscription you won’t spend too much on it and once you feel you’re ready to proceed to some advanced lessons, you may shift to another guitar learning platform. And it goes for all instruments included.

Let’s say you’re a keyboard player who would love to learn how to play the bass. Fender Play will show you the essence and the rest you will learn on your own as you do know how music works in general.

To sum it up, Fender Play could be considered as an “elementary” school of online guitar learning websites and if you approach it that way, it shouldn’t disappoint you.

How Does Fender Play Compare?

Here’s a quick comparison of Fender Play and other popular guitar learning websites:

Fender Play vs Yousician

Just when you think Fender Play is the most interactive system we have found, there is Yousician. Imagine playing Guitar Hero or Rock Band game with a real instrument by using your cellphone. That’s pretty much the essence of the Yousician experience and it works pretty well.

But, while it is interactive and it can create so much fun, it simply lacks real lessons and instructors you may find on Fender Play. So, while you can learn how to play some songs and how the fretboard is organized, we wouldn’t recommend it as a real learning system.

Also, the membership costs you a bit more and in case you want to try out bass or ukulele, you will have to purchase PREMIUM+ membership while these lessons are available on Fender Play within the single fee.

Photo credit: youtube.com

Fender Play vs Jamplay

Jamplay is probably the most resourceful guitar learning website at the moment. It is full of professional lessons taken with multiple cameras and they even engage some famous rock artists to hold master classes sharing both their knowledge and experience with you. There are weekly live courses with Q&A sessions, and they have an active community.

But, with such a huge and unique content comes a membership that is twice as expensive monthly and it gets close to Fender price on an annual basis thanks to various promo periods when the price lower.

On the other hand, Fender Play gives you an option to learn other instruments such as bass or ukulele for the same membership fee.

To sum it up, our impression is that newbies may feel much more comfortable with Fender Play content, while advanced players should check Jamplay first.

Fender Play vs Guitar Tricks

While both websites have a section dedicated to beginners, Guitar Tricks is a more pro-oriented website and its membership is twice as much as Fender Play. Their song lessons library is incredible and it’s probably one of the best you can find while the lessons are hit & miss - but overall, the content shown in these lessons is usually intended for advanced players. 

We would recommend this website to those players who are truly determined they want to learn guitar while others who see it more as weekend fun should go with Fender Play first.

How Do Online Fender Play Guitar Lessons Work? 

Once you login you have to pick either acoustic or electric guitar. There are also Ukulele and bass guitar lessons available as well.

Next, based on the instrument you have picked there will be several genres you can choose from - rock, blues, folk, country, or pop and they all are split into 5 skill levels. 

What Makes Fender Play Stand Out From The Competition?

Fender Play has a more modern look. It combines gamification elements such as level progress to keep you motivated and interested. You might have seen some language learning apps doing the same thing.

Maybe it’s just a thing or the approach Fender Play teachers have, but it gives you a bit more of a user-friendly experience. Some other websites have more and better content, but they may look a bit too professional for newbies, and eventually, such a vibe may turn them away from learning as they might feel they are not capable of learning.

Can You Really Learn To Play Guitar Online Through Fender Play? 

It all depends on your ambitions. We can see many beginners enjoying this website, especially younger audiences because of the very well-designed mobile app. They have that “interactive” edge polished better than the rest of the competition, so we can imagine how Fender Play might be a better solution in learning your instrument.

Once you learn the basics, the rest depends on your ambitions and devotion no matter what website you opt-in.

Final Word 

Fender Play is a website that has something different to offer. Can we recommend it for becoming a pro player? Not really. But, its interactive layout and easy-going lessons might be just what you need to overcome that most boring part of every study - learning the ropes.

People Also Ask

Let’s check some of the most frequent questions asked about Fender Play. We will check if there is an age limit for taking those lessons, membership pricing, and see if there is any free content still available and sum up our impression about the experience we had using this website. 

How Much Does Fender Play Cost?

Fender Play has a single-fee subscription fee every month of $9.99.

If you select annual membership you will get a 25% discount so it would cost $89.99. Along with this discount, you will also get 10% off Fender gear and free 2-day shipping on orders over $50 as a bonus.

How Old Do You Need to Be to Take Online Fender Play Guitar Lessons?

Fender Play lessons are generally oriented towards the young population, so we believe that as long as you can hold an instrument on your own properly you could take at least some lessons. But, bear in mind that there are no specific guitar lessons for kids at this moment.

Is Fender Still Offering Free Lessons?

No, Fender stopped with the free lessons offer - instead, it provides you with the 30 day free trial option which should explain to you a bit better what you can expect from this app. But, as Fender is promoting the whole service intensively, there might be some new offers in the future.

How Long is Fender Play Free Trial?

Fender Play free trial lasts for 30 days and it’s automatically renewed if you don’t cancel it within this time frame. During this trial, you will get full membership access so you can test it out and see if it works for you.

How to Cancel Fender Play

Go to your account profile and select Billing beneath Subscriptions. There will be an option Cancel Auto-Renew. Confirm it with “Yes I want to cancel” and it should shop billing you once your monthly cycle ends.

Is Fender Play Worth It?

We believe it’s worth the money it asks for. Fender Play might not be that detailed as other websites are, but they are significantly less expensive which makes them an ideal choice for all beginners who don’t have money or knowledge to take long courses.

Craig

Hi there, my name is Craig. I took over Gear Savvy in mid-2019 and have had a blast writing content about music ever since. My role here is to steer the ship and ensure readers have the best information available for learning a thing or two. When I’m not working on content, I’m a husband and a dad. I enjoy spending time with my family, playing guitar, or messing around in my woodshop.