Gear Review: Yamaha Music Partners with Keith Urban

Keith Urban has won CMA, ACM, CMT, and Grammy awards for his country music songs and albums. But he is also very passionate about his guitar playing. Recently Urban partnered with Yamaha Corporation of America to release the Urban acoustic guitar (yes, his name is on the headstock!). The guitar is aimed at beginners or intermediate musicians who are looking for a quality guitar at a reasonable price. 

When our review instrument arrived at the American Songwriter offices, I was surprised by the appearance, build quality, and playability of this guitar. Friends and co-workers frequently ask me what starter guitar I recommend for them or their children. My preference has also been an instrument that is reasonable in price, playable, sturdy, and includes everything you need to get started. The Urban acoustic guitar fits this bill nicely.

Besides the guitar, the package also includes a guitar strap, guitar picks, and a free interactive guitar lesson App. Keith Urban helped develop these lessons with Yamaha, showcasing some of his hit songs. It includes a tuner, rhythm trainer, chord trainer, and progress tracker to see how you’re doing. The guitar itself features a tasteful tobacco sunburst finish, cutaway for access further up the fretboard, satin-finish neck, and a slim neck shape to accommodate smaller hands. Anyone starting on the guitar path needs an instrument that has a neck that will fit their hands, not require too much hand strength to push the strings down and it sits on their lap comfortably to play. 

My first acoustic guitar was a department store cheapy that was basically unplayable and unfortunately, that happens to many kids then they just stop wanting to learn or practice.  The Urban guitar by Yamaha is a great started guitar for any age individual. It is very easy to play and is surprisingly loud for an acoustic guitar in this price range. The included App lessons and resources are a huge value also. Allowing students to start playing and learning right out of the box. And once they master Keith’s songs then it might be time to move on to a local or online guitar teacher to further their musical education.

Keith and Yamaha are both proponents of children and young people being able to afford a quality instrument and learning to play guitar. I believe the Urban guitar package is going to be very popular around this holiday season for all of the right reasons. Standard street price is only $249.99, which is a bargain for what is included. The Urban acoustic guitar was so easy to play, I found that I couldn’t put it down. Who knows, this could be the first guitar of our next award-winning performer and songwriter. 

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