Has anyone noticed that most - all? - of the popular guitarists on YouTube play sitting down?
Bands play on stage standing up. People jamming often do it standing up. Music videos show people playing standing up.
But aside from those things, YouTube seems to almost exclusively show people playing sitting down. Of course Justin, and the other popular teachers. But it also includes others that aren’t teaching, that are more doing videos for the clicks (even though most of them sell courses) - Paul Davids, Music is Win, etc etc.
It seems to be basically anything that isn’t a recorded clip of a gig. Or, ironically, videos of the teachers that usually sit down all the time, teaching others how to play standing up.
Why do you think they do this? Do you know of any YouTube guitarists that mainly play standing up?
How did I end up down this rabbit hole… well, I record most of my videos standing, and do most of my electric practice standing. I was looking for example videos to make my videos a bit better and struggled to find many. Am I on the wrong track playing standing a lot?
Just my thought and not the reason I’m sure but I’m pretty sure when your framing a seated position you’d get a more compact view of the guitar and head without too much background, especially if you have limited recording devices or space. Also easier for those of us who have to read our lyrics/chords.
‘Generally’ framing standing up ends up with more distractions/background etc maybe:thinking:
It’s a good point JK, I think Craig probably has it right as their content is a mix of speaking and playing so easier to frame everything once for the recording. I know a few occasionally play standing (Music Is Win mainly, I do like Tyler) but you’re right it’s few and far between.
I’m hardly qualified to comment however considering my usual playing position!
I think Craig hits the nail on the head regards framing. Its the same for Justin’s lessons.
I would say no. The sooner you stand the better. I’d been playing off and on for years (with zero progress) but even when I arrived here I continued to play seated. I only started to attempt playing standing up, when my singing developed and I started to sing and play.
At that point I realised I could not easily play standing up and had to relearn and readjust many things. So if you aspire to play at an OM or live environment and strongly suggest adding standing to your practice routine. Or get a stool to take to your gigs.
This is an interesting topic. I would also add that recording something takes a lot of time with multiple restarts, so being comfortable for long periods of time is much needed.
But I would agree that the main reason is the framing.
I follow Dave Simpson on YouTube and he does a lot standing. But he also has a band so is used to it. I guess if you don’t do it out of habit it may be quite hard. IIRC Robert Fripp always insisted on sitting even live! Watch him and Toyah on the tube.
Why stand when you can sit?? when you teach for hours or less, sitting is much more comfortable…when you practice for an average band you have to learn to play standing up that looks way more cool, so it is often said that it is important (and rightly so because it looks way better they say )
What would the frame matter, the head, body and guitar remain a bit in the same place, if you set the camera standard a bit higher than that, there are plenty of them where you only see the middle part and not their entire sitting body… so comfort is the most important then.
Rest assured you are doing 100% the Right Thing! (why do you think you’ve made sooo much progress already… it’s not coincidence)
Playing standing up is better in every respect: really good for your technique and posture, you’ll be less prone to slouching and craning over the instrument, and it makes singing way, way better 'cos you can breathe more freely too. When you venture out to do an open mike or a gig you’ll bond with the audience better if you are on your feet.
People sit down mainly for two reasons:
partly because they haven’t spent the little time necessary working round how the the neck moves differently. it’s not a big deal, and you’ve obviously sailed through that hoop without even realising
but chiefly it’s because ( little rant coming) they practice all the time in front of their computers. The bad consequence of this is that they never really learn the songs from memory because the prompt is always there
Keep at it JK , you are doing really well!!!
Some people are saying “why stand when you can sit?” My answer is twofold. First, we spend the majority of our lives sitting around on our arses, so why play guitar sitting when you can stand? In other words, why be lazier than we are already? Second, I find standing more comfortable and it also gives me more freedom to move and “feel” what I’m playing. And no, I do not perform so that is nothing to do with it in my case.
The only real advantage I can see to sitting while recording yourself is that it’s easier to stay in frame, especially for closer shots.
Probably for the same reason we eat, watch TV, work on our computer and read a book sitting down: it’s less tiring.
My son took in-person guitar lessons for several years. He and his teacher always played sitting down. When it was time for my son to play on stage the first time (at a jam session), his teacher told him the week before that he should practice standing up, which is what he did.
Is there any benefit to playing standing up, if you are not performing live? I seem to recall that guitarists in recording sessions often play sitting down. I checked the Beatles doc “Get Back”: in the studio, John always plays sitting down, George plays sometimes sitting sometimes standing. Paul plays standing, as did John when he played bass on one song. Maybe standing is required for bass playing?
Maybe if you’re singing, standing is better?
Anyway, I’m curious to hear if people think there is a benefit to standing if you are not performing live and if you are not singing.
I play standing almost exclusively. I find that everything feels a lot more open when I stand versus when I sit, foot tapping is easier, my posture is better (no cheating looks at the fretboard), my strumming arm has better range of movement, etc. About the only time I sit is when I pull out the classical guitar and even then it’s probably only because it doesn’t have a strap.
Oh, and I think it also looks a lot cooler
I would disagree that standing is so much better. How many classical guitarists stand?
I think it is personal preference. Some people need to move, rock and more contemporary music is dynamic so maybe more entertaining with a dynamic stand up performance.
To me, playing guitar is relaxing and so I prefer to relax seated. Besides, my neck dislikes anything with weight hanging on it. I even had trouble wearing a long doctors coat (with pockets full) during my residency 25 years ago. So not for me.
There is no right or wrong way on this topic. It’s dealers choice. Play in which ever way is comfortable for you and keeps you inspired, playing, practicing and happy. If you like to stand and are happy with your videos, have at it. If you are curious why someone might prefer standing or sitting, just ask them. You may get some interesting answers. Rest assured that because someone sits while playing on youtube it does not mean they can’t play standing up.