Written by Danielle
Written by Danielle Kittleberger and updated on June 28th, 2023
Danielle graduated from James Madison University with a degree in public health education after spending two years doing competitive show choir in high school. She and Bobby got married in 2011. These days she does product/market research and page formatting for Guitar Chalk.
How many guitar players are there in the world?
It's difficult to put a number on this, but we've pulled together as much of the data as possible to provide a reasonably close number, based on surveys and publicly available information.
Here's what we found.
Data on the Number of Guitar Players Worldwide and new Guitar Players after 2020-2021
Note that we're using the term "guitar players" to note any person that has, at one point, picked up a guitar and played it, generally between the ages of 13 and 65.
- Estimated number of guitar players worldwide: 712 million, or roughly 10 percent of the world's population.
- Number of new guitar players during 2020-2021 (COVID-19/pandemic years): Seven percent of the U.S. population ages 13-64, approximately 16 million people, started learning guitar in the last two years, with 62 percent citing COVID-19 and the associated lockdowns as a major motivator.
Roughly 700-715 million people in the world play guitar, or have played guitar, in some capacity.
Estimations based on Statistical Study
Conducted/funded by Fender
Guitar Sales through 2021 in the United States
Guitar sales in the United States clipped 3.34 million in post-pandemic 2021, which is the highest on record since 2005 when it hit 3.33 million.
Keep in mind, the sale of a guitar doesn't not necessarily equate to a single guitar player, as plenty of guitarists will buy multiple instruments. However, this gives you some insight into the popularity of the instrument in a post-pandemic world.
- Guitars sold in the United States in 2005: 3.33 million
- Guitars sold in the United States in 2019: 2.74 million
- Guitar sold in the United States in 2021: 3.34 million
- Acoustic guitar share in 2021 sales: 1.85 million
- Electric guitar share in 2021 sales: 1.49 million
All of this data was pulled from the Statista Research department.