JustinGuitar has been the first stepping stone for many successful guitar journeys, and many aspiring guitar players have started their journey with guitar teacher Justin Sandercoe’s help. Although the beloved app is described as an engaging and effective step-by-step beginner course, it’s not just beginners and rookies who can benefit from Justin’s teaching.
Case in point: passionate hobby guitarist Sanna Keskioja first started playing the guitar when she was a teenager, but one could say that she experienced a renaissance in guitar playing when she got acquainted with Musopia’s JustinGuitar app.
“I wish I had had the Justin App when I first started practicing years ago. It would’ve made a big difference”, Sanna says. “Back in the day, when I started playing, you didn’t have anything like this as an option.”
“I started playing because I simply thought the guitar was such a cool instrument. I really liked the sound, and I used to be a huge fan of Led Zeppelin and other guitar heroes back in the day.”
“I wish I had had the Justin App when I first started practicing years ago. It would’ve made a big difference.”
She first started to play classical guitar when she was 16 but soon encountered a problem: her hands were simply too small to get along with the classical guitar. “I felt like it took up all of my time just trying to stretch my fingers to hit the right spots, to be able to play the songs”, she explains. She ditched the classical guitar but later found a better way to play that suited her needs.
“During my studies, I got motivated to learn basic chords to accompany myself when I was singing, which is the most important form of musical expression for me. The most important thing about playing is that I can accompany myself when I sing.”
This revelation made all the difference since strumming was easier, even with smaller hands. “Still, with small hands, you must pay attention to how you position your hand to reach the right chords at the right time. Justin’s technical tips have been very helpful to tackle this problem”, she explains.
“I first found Justin’s app in 2022. I had just recovered from a finger injury and was ready to start practicing again. That’s when I got acquainted with JustinGuitar.”
It made all the difference. Sanna says that she first tried to look for quality teaching on YouTube but soon noticed that Justin’s teaching methods were much higher quality. “Justin is a top-notch teacher”, Sanna says. “He is a fantastic teacher: very systematic, his pedagogical skills are of high quality, and, most of all, his technical tips are excellent.”
“I have learned a lot of new things! The most important thing for me was learning to strum properly. I’m not a natural at it, and Justin’s teaching has helped me improve significantly. Justin’s advice generally is much better than what I’ve received before. Thanks to him, I’ve truly been able to improve my sound. When I started taking lessons, there was no such thing as remote music lessons. As a self-taught musician, it would have been much easier if I had had the chance to start learning with an app like this from the beginning. Now, I need to keep correcting a lot of old mistakes.”
Besides the quality and possibilities of remote guitar lessons, Sanna finds that a lot has changed in the world of guitar playing. “Back when I first started playing, there were just guys we looked up to as guitar heroes. Girls didn’t really play in bands, and there were barely any female guitar heroes yet. Now, there are several great, cool female guitar players, like the amazing Finnish guitarist Erja Lyytinen”, Sanna says.
“Thanks to Justin, I’ve truly been able to improve my own sound.”
“I myself don’t entertain the idea of becoming a major guitarist. At the moment, I simply enjoy improving my technique and being able to accompany myself while singing. One day, I’d like to perhaps play in a band and write my own songs, but before that, I need first to have the guts to play in front of people”, Sanna laughs.
For her, the best part about playing is the flow state you get into. “If you’ve just had the worst day and start playing, hours suddenly fly by, and you lose all sense of time.”
Music, in general, is more than just a hobby for her. “Music is such an integral part of life and of who I am as a person. It is quite simply irreplaceable; I can’t even begin to imagine a life without it. For me, music has always been number one. It’s always there, one way or the other.”
Although Sanna doesn’t entertain broad audiences with a guitar yet, she has found a lovely and somewhat original way to spread joy with music. “Next to music, I love riding and being around horses. When I notice that a horse might be a bit tense, I start to sing. I’ve noticed it relaxes both parties equally”, Sanna laughs.