As I’ve said a million times in these pages, I’m a fan of anything that can get kids—or beginners of any age—into playing guitar. The folks at Loog feel the same way, and they have a very interesting take on how best to do that. They sell unassembled 3-string acoustic ($159) and electric ($199) instruments. (They even offer an awesome Lucite model for $299!) Why unassembled? Because, they explain, “When kids build their own guitar, they develop a deep connection to it. It’s an experience that gives them a sense of ownership and accomplishment.” They also say that kids will bond with their parents through the process. I can’t argue with that. Art Thompson and I put this Loog together in about 15 minutes, and the bond we forged lasted at least that long. Seriously, though, it’s a simple process that will teach kids about the parts of the guitar, and it’s fun to boot.
Once your Loog is assembled, you can string and tune it in a variety of ways, but the recommended starting point is the top three strings of a standard guitar. This is really smart for a couple of reasons. One, players can play a bunch of chords right away with only one finger. Two, every chord they learn will eventually translate to a 6-string guitar. The Loog comes with a songbook with tunes by the Beatles, Taylor Swift, and others, but any online tab or chord chart could be fair game if you just concentrate on the top three strings.
Getting a short-scale instrument such as this to intonate is a little tricky, but the Loog is easy to play and the lipstick tube pickup in our electric version sounds great. I guarantee that anyone will be playing songs within the first half hour of opening this box, and that’s an undeniably cool thing.
Kudos Fun, educational build project. Excellent starter instrument. Instant gratification.
Concerns Intonation can be dodgy.