Is Mandolin a Good First Instrument to start? [Explained]

You may be wondering, “Is mandolin a good first instrument?” Don’t worry, in this article, we are going to tell you the reasons why you should play mandolin as your first instrument and what makes it unique. Luckily, the mandolin is a straightforward and easy instrument to learn.

It’s lightweight and smaller so you can rehearse anywhere you would like. It has fewer strings than numerous instruments, similar to the guitar, which makes reading tablature a lot simpler.

What makes Mandolin Different Than Other Instruments?

Like a multi-tool: When you play the mandolin, you will notice that it’s like a multi-tool as it combines the aspects of metronome, violin, and piano into one small instrument, you will also see that it produces higher pitch notes and each of the strings are tuned to a different note. As you keep reading, you will learn more about its distinctiveness.

Advantage of string family: Like the violin, the mandolin is a part of the stringed family and it has eight strings tuned in perfect fifths (G, D, A, E). Generally, the chord shapes that you might have learned on guitar won’t be of any assistance when you play mandolin. While this is not totally valid for all chord structures, it’s most likely simpler if you perceive the mandolin chords as the bottom four strings of a guitar flipped around.

Unique Variants: There are a few unique variants of a mandolin, as there are with a guitar. Most mandolin players notably use F style mandolins and A -style mandolins. The F-style mandolin is the standard bluegrass mandolin that can be quite expensive.

Budget-Friendly: The A-style mandolin is used in folk and Celtic music and it is a lot more affordable than the F-style ones. You can get either of them according to your budget and the type of music you intend to play. In case, you have a tight budget, you could go with the A-style one as your first instrument as it is reasonably priced.

is mandolin a good first instrument

Contrarily, if you want to learn Bluegrass music while playing the mandolin, then you should look at the F-style one since it is remarkably known for that type of music.

Similarities with Violin: Learning the way to play other stringed instruments becomes uncomplicated once you fully comprehend the mandolin. Since the mandolin shares similarities with the violin, you will have a trouble-free learning experience if you know how to play the violin.

Beginner-friendly: As for a new learner, if you acknowledge the way all the chords and notes work, you will be able to get the hang of playing it. There a lot of materials out there that can impart knowledge to you about musical patterns, scales, and modes. The best part about it is that all these materials is that it can also apply to other instruments.

Help to learn other instruments: you will be able to learn other musical instruments easily as you learn how to play the mandolin. Regardless, if you have no playing experience at all, the mandolin is still the easiest option when it comes to stringed instruments.

You can hear and detect the sound of the mandolin when you listen to the classical genre, jazz, bluegrass and also in some Celtic and Irish tunes. The sound of the mandolin is entirely different than the sound of a guitar, which is great if you don’t fancy the sound that a guitar produces.

The sound that mandolins produce effectively cut directly through the sound of a band, which makes it an incredible instrument. If you are keen on doing a ton of solo work, you should definitely play mandolin.

We have briefly described to you the uniqueness of the mandolin, now we are going to delve in to the reasons why you should get a mandolin if you are just starting out.

7 Reasons to Buy a Mandolin

Easy to Learn

Learning how to play the mandolin is pretty straightforward. Since it has fewer strings than the other musical instruments like the violin and the guitar, reading tablature is certainly much simpler and it also has lighter gauge strings than the guitar.

The scale structure will be pleasantly spread out and easy on the fingerboard (Depending on the key of the song you play) which will make it less difficult to comprehend with practice. For the most part, musical instruments with frets like the guitar, banjo, and mandolin are easy to play.


If you are looking for a reason why you should learn to play this instrument, keep in mind that the mandolin can fit flawlessly in pretty much any style of music that you can envision, the mandolin is an incredibly versatile instrument.

Regardless of whether you like playing bluegrass, new age, eastern European, classical jazz, Caribbean, or country, the mandolin family of instruments can be used effortlessly. If you want to learn an instrument, the mandolin is an excellent choice regardless of what your personal taste in music is.

Increases creativity

You can express your creativity when you play this incredible instrument due to its therapeutic capabilities that can make it simpler for you to adapt by playing it as it allows you to flex your creative skills.

Improves concentration

Some parts of your brain become stimulated when you play mandolins, hence increasing your muscle and intellectual capacity, and memory. You have a good chance of improving your concentration levels and memory if you continue practicing.

Besides, playing this wonderful instrument is an efficient and productive way to relieve stress.

mandolin a good first instrument

Creates an income source

If you constantly practice playing, the mandolin can create a decent way for you to earn money while having fun. Regardless of whether you decide to turn into a professional mandolin player or a performing one, you will be able to earn a decent income while also having an enjoyable experience.

You will be able to enter a ton of genres as your skills become advanced, which will provide you more opportunities for you in the music industry.

Simple to handle

This might be somewhat self-evident, however, mandolins are compact and portable, which implies that you can move with them here to there without straining yourself. The benefit of learning the mandolin is that you can practice it anywhere.

Rhythm & Melody

The mandolin plays rhythm as well as melody, which means that there is no restriction regarding what you can learn. You can have the option to join any jam sessions to play rhythms in case you opt to focus on learning a few basic chords. Learning melody may take some time and your willingness to practice it.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which is easier to play mandolin or guitar?

  • Guitar is much more difficult than mandolin.

Which musical instrument is best for beginners?

  • Ukulele, Piano, Banjo, Mandolin.

What is the best mandolin for Beginners?

  • Kentucky KM-150

Final Words

Learning an instrument can be tough if you do not know the instrument well enough or if you do not have a good teacher. But in case, you are well prepared to learn a musical instrument, playing the mandolin is one of the best options you could think of.

Before reading this article, you might have been thinking, “Is mandolin a good first instrument?” We, hope that by now you have grasped that learning how to play the mandolin is a simple task. however, you need proper concentration and a lot of practice in order to learn to play this instrument.

Though it belongs to the family of stringed instruments and it looks similar to the guitar, the mandolin is still a unique instrument Just like any other instrument, the mandolin has its learning curve and sets of challenges so it may require lots of practice if it does not come naturally to you.

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