It is sad to see the decline music has taken in the last few years. Fewer kids are taking up instruments in school as music programs are cut. Until recently, playing instruments was not seen as "cool" anymore.
This seems to be changing as the popularity of music video games rises. The percentage of kids wanting to take up instruments, especially guitars, is going up each year. This is somewhat surprising for a couple of reasons. One reason is that these music games have only been around and getting popular for a few years. So it is rather amazing to see them having such a big impact in such a short period of time.
Another reason is because the "instruments" you play in these games are not complicated at all. Kids are actually showing the initiative to move away from the easy activity of playing the game, to the more difficult activity of actually playing a real guitar or drum set.
Some people do not agree that music games are teaching our kids anything. There are those who feel these games are an embarrassment to the music world. Kids are only required to push buttons on the fake guitar matching those on the TV screen, and people argue that these teachers are nothing about real guitars, and then, these games are useless.
But is that really true? There are many people who do not think so. Even if these games do not teach kids how to play a real guitar, they can be used as an inspirational tool. There are a great many kids in America and Britain who are taking up guitar lessons because of their music games. These kids may have never even shown an interest in playing music if not for these games.
There are a couple other things about these games that might be helping kids to become more interested in real guitars. One is that when you first pick up a guitar, it is unwieldy and makes your fingers hurt terribly. If that is all a kid is seeing, feeling, and thinking, they will likely give up, being discouraged. Music games make kids think, "What if I could be the next big music star?" This can encourage them to keep playing and working at their skill, picturing not a fake crowd on the TV, but a real one in a concert hall. Another thing is that these games are helping kids overcome their stage fright. They start out in a room with friends or family, and learn that making mistakes does not matter; you just keep playing. This can be a lot of help when they are playing in front of strangers.
A final point in favor of these music games is that they are playing songs that kids these days may not have been familiar with otherwise. Kids are more likely to be well-rounded musicians if they can appreciate all aspects of a type of music like rock. Hearing classic rock artists will expand their music appreciation, and this is always good.
While music games may not teach kids about guitars and drums specifically, they are showing them as inspiration for kids as young as four and five to take an interest in playing music. What could be better than that?