How to Make Money Playing Guitar: Simple & Effective Ways

How To Make Money Playing Guitar

It’s no secret that learning how to play the guitar can be a hugely rewarding experience, both personally and financially. But for many people, making money from playing the guitar seems like nothing more than a pipe dream.

There are many ways you can make money playing the guitar if you know where to look. One of the most popular ways to make money playing guitar is by giving guitar lessons. This is a great option if you have a passion for teaching and enjoy helping others learn to play.

This article will look at some of the best ways to make money playing guitar, including tips on finding students and marketing yourself as a player.

Finding Gigs

Finding Guitar Gigs

The first step to making money playing the guitar is finding gigs. There are many ways to find gigs, and the best way to find gigs is to start by looking in your local area. You can search online for “guitar gigs” or “live music” in your area. You can also check with local music stores and clubs or talk to your friends and family members to see if they know of any opportunities.

Once you’ve found some gigs, it’s essential to be prepared and professional. Dress in appropriate clothing, bring all the equipment you need (such as cables, extra picks, etc.), and make sure that you arrive on time.

It’s also important to have a good attitude and be willing to work hard. Gigs can sometimes be unpredictable, and you may have to play for longer than expected or deal with difficult audience members. But if you keep a positive attitude and are prepared to work hard, you’ll be more likely to book future gigs.

Building a Reputation

Another key to making money playing guitar is building a reputation as a talented, reliable musician. This means regularly practicing, learning new songs, and giving your best performance every time you play. It also means treating your clients with respect and courtesy at all times.

You may need to take on low-paying or unpaid gigs to build your reputation. These can help you build experience and a track record, which will make it easier for you to land higher-paying jobs in the future. As you build a reputation for yourself, word of mouth will begin to spread, and you’ll start to get more and more work.

Play at Restaurants, Bars, and Other Venues

Play At Restaurants, Bars, And Other Venues

One of the most common ways to make money playing guitar is to play at restaurants, bars, and other venues. These gigs can be very profitable, but they can also be quite stressful.

To land these gigs, you’ll need to promote yourself effectively. This means creating a professional-looking website or online portfolio and distributing flyers and business cards in your local area. You can also search online for “restaurant gigs” or “bar gigs” in your area.

If you do well at these gigs, you may be able to gradually increase your rates and start working in larger venues or with more prestigious clients who can pay more to watch you perform.

Teaching Guitar Lessons

Teaching Guitar Lessons

Another great way to make money playing guitar is to teach guitar lessons. This is an excellent option if you enjoy teaching, and it can be quite lucrative if you have a lot of students.

To start teaching guitar lessons, you’ll need to build a website or social media presence where people can learn more about you and your lessons. It would help if you also considered posting some free tutorials or content on YouTube to attract potential students.

Once you have some students, it’s important to be organized and professional in your teaching. This means being on time for lessons, providing clear and concise instruction, and using proper technique yourself.

It’s also important to keep your rates reasonable, as many people are looking for affordable guitar lessons. By charging a reasonable rate and providing high-quality lessons, you’ll be able to attract new students quickly.

As you continue teaching guitar lessons, you can build your reputation and grow your client base over time. Soon, you’ll have plenty of students and a steady income from teaching guitar.

Play for Other Musicians

If you have experience as a session guitarist or touring musician, you can make money playing guitar by playing for other musicians. This can be a great option if you enjoy traveling and meeting new people.

One of the best ways to find these gigs is to search online for open auditions in your area. You can also post your availability on social media or look for job postings on local websites.

When you successfully land one of these gigs, it’s important to be professional and reliable. This means showing up on time for rehearsals and performances, knowing the music well, and following the directions of your bandmates.

As you continue playing for other musicians, you can build a reputation as a talented guitarist who can be counted on. This will help you land more gigs in the future, and it can lead to opportunities to tour and record with well-known musicians who would want to use your music.

Sell Your Music Online

Sell Your Music Online

If you’re a songwriter or musician, another great way to make money playing guitar is to sell your music online. You can sell your music through iTunes, Spotify, Amazon Music, and other online retailers.

You can also create your website to sell your music or use a platform like Band camp. If you have a large following or a lot of fans, you can also consider using crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter to raise money for your next album.

Enter Music Contests and Festivals

If you’re looking for more exposure or opportunities to network, consider entering music contests and festivals. These events can be a great way to get your music heard by new listeners and connect with other musicians.

There are many different music festivals and competitions, so do some research to see which ones might be a good fit for you.

Perform at Weddings and Other Events

Perform At Weddings And Other Events

Another great way to make money playing guitar is to perform at weddings and other events. This can be a great way to get exposure and build your reputation.

You can search online for “wedding bands” or “wedding musicians” in your area to get started. This will help you find opportunities to connect with clients and land gigs.

Create and Sell Instructional Materials

If you’re looking for another way to make money playing guitar, consider creating and selling instructional materials. This could include video lessons, e-books, or even physical books.

This is an excellent option if you enjoy teaching and helping others learn. It’s also a great way to generate passive income once you’ve created your instructional materials.

Factors to Be Keen On

There are several factors that you should avoid when making money playing guitar. These include:

Too Aggressive Marketing

If you try to spam potential clients or customers with your services, they will likely perceive it as intrusive or unprofessional. Instead, focus on building relationships through networking and word-of-mouth referrals.

Selling Low-Quality Products or Services

For example, if you’re offering guitar instruction, make sure you’re providing value and teaching your students effectively. Otherwise, you’ll likely lose students quickly and damage your reputation.

Being Unreliable

If you commit to a gig or performance, follow through. Showing up late or not will damage your reputation and make it harder to find future work.

Being Unprepared

When you take on a gig, make sure you know the music well and can execute it flawlessly. This will give you the best chance of impressing your audience and getting repeat work.

Undervaluing Your Skills or Services

Do not accept gigs where you will be underpaid or taken advantage of. This can hurt your reputation and make it challenging to build a sustainable business in the long term.

Not Investing in the Right Equipment

If you want to make money playing guitar, ensure that you have access to the instruments and other equipment you need. This includes high-quality guitars, amps, accessories, and more.

Taking On Too Many Commitments at Once

It’s important to pace yourself when making money playing guitar, especially if you are starting a new business or focusing on building your client base. Avoid taking on too many projects at once, and focus on doing a few things well rather than spreading yourself too thin.


Whether you are looking to supplement your income, start a new business, or enjoy sharing your love of music with others, there are many ways to make money playing guitar. Some options include performing at weddings and other events, creating and selling instructional materials, and affiliate marketing.

However, it is crucial to avoid common pitfalls like spamming potential clients or customers, undervaluing your skills, and taking on too many commitments at once. With a bit of effort and planning, you can find the right opportunity to make money playing guitar.