Rogue RM100A A-Style Beginners Bluegrass Mandolin
If you are looking for an inexpensive, but good quality beginner mandolin to play bluegrass or country music, the Rogue RM-100A A-style mandolin is a really good, sound choice. At less than $60 at Amazon, you are getting an easy to play mandolin that looks and sounds as good as many that cost several hundred dollars more. What makes the Rogue stand out over the other mandolins in it's price range is the adjustable bridge, which allows the player to ease the action (the tension you have to put on the strings with your fingers), and it's really nice classic dark finish. The workmanship for such a low cost mandolin is really exceptional!
Another special feature of this one is that it ships already strung, which the beginner will appreciate, as having to set up the strings when you are starting out to play is not always easy. New strings always need a breaking in period, and once they stretch from playing they have to be tuned occasionally, until they set. So, I strongly suggest that if you don't have one already, buy a tuner at the same time (or gift it for the beginner) when you buy this mandolin. They are inexpensive and will start the player off on the right foot with what they need to start learning how to play.
I would also suggest getting a beginners mandolin instructional guide as well. There is nothing more fun than being able to pick up your new instrument and start playing music right away. I have included some good suggestions below for you to look at.
You honestly can't go wrong with this little mando, it's one of the most popular A style mandolins for beginners sold, with great customer response as well. And, it's ready to play solo, or in group performance.
To learn more about mandolins, and see other models, both acoustic and electric from beginner to professional grade under $500 go to my review here.
Get started off right with your new mandolin, with good instructions and a easy to use tuner, so you can be playing bluegrass, country, or folk music right away.
I chose this mandolin dvd instructional set because it's truly for beginners, unlike a lot of others. It teaches you how to tune the mandolin, and gives step by step instruction from the start of learning chords, basic mandolin techniques and starts you playing simple melodies right away so you don't get frustrated trying to learn more complicated techniques. A great learning tool for the beginner, and perfect to go with the Rogue Mandolin you buy.
Snark makes the most popular clip on tuners right now because they are accurate and so easy to use. This one clips right on the mandolin, which makes it easy to tune because it sits right there in view as you adjust the strings.
You can also learn how to play the mandolin online. Here is a great resource site that gives free mandolin lessons, and offers paid instructions for more advanced learning tools: Watch and learn how to play the mandolin.
Here is a sample of the free mandolin video lessons you can get online in my link above.