I teach all styles, specializing in classical, fingerstyle, electric guitar, blues guitar, heavy metal, pop music, Latin, Spanish, etc.
My main objective is to give the student encouragement in finding what kind of music they want to play. Some students want to learn electric guitar, and end up wanting to play classical. Some students want to play pop songs on acoustic guitar, and end up wanting to learn how to play advanced fingerstyle guitar. I hope to make each student advance to play what styles move them.
Goals and objectives for students:
1) Introduce new students to the dynamics of the instrument.
-I find it's best to teach a few easy chords and notes for a brand new player before getting too technical. This will help the student naturally find uses for the physical parts of the instruments (strings, fretboard, frets, soundhole, bridge, tuning keys, etc).
2) Give guideline to proper body positioning and hand positioning for guitar playing.
- For classical students, learning how to hold the hand and use the A, I, M, and P fingers effectively is important at this stage. Holding a pick and using the hand and arm in an effective way is also taught at this stage.
3) Get a student familiar with reading music, one note at a time.
- I teach classical guitar out of the Charles Duncan Modern Approach to Classical Guitar book. I learned how to play with these books, and I know them inside and out. I also use many other books, depending on which style the teacher may be interested in - flatpicking, fingerstyle, strumming chords, folk, etc.
4) Develop a set practice routine.
-A student is only as good as their practice routine. Finding 30 minutes a day is enough to build a foundation for learning what I teach each week. Scales, chords, bar chords, and eventually pieces of music will be incorporated in a weekly plan to keep the student advancing comfortably and with a proper direction for next weeks lesson.
5) Teach a student how to read tablature and chord charts.
-While classical students don't read tablature, it's still a useful tool if you want to learn rock music, and it is used by almost every guitarist in the universe.
So you have been playing guitar for years. Perhaps you can read music, or perhaps you even understand scales and can play classical guitar and a lot of songs people are familiar with. I hope to get you to an advanced level! Read on...
Goals and objectives for students:
1) Take student feedback for what they want to learn.
-Every student at the intermediate level is different. Some have a few nasty habits they have developed, some have the potential to become an expert. I like to get to know what they wish to learn from me, and introduce them to things they may need brushing up on or, may have never been taught.
2) Develop a students ear by learning how chord and song structures are developed.
-It's important to have a strong foundation of theory for this. Once a student learns how a chord is built, and how they relate with each other and resolve throughout pieces of music, they will be able to learn almost every piece of music. Modes and scales are introduced to increase a students vocabulary and help them move across the fretboard in different positions easier.
3) Challenge a student with increasingly difficult repertoire.
- Some guitar players reach a level where they become too comfortable. This prohibits the advancement of their playing. Imagine if a body builder wanted to eventually lift 300 pounds, but they refused to lift more than 100 every time they worked out. I find students that get in a rut, or get lazy and don't advance past a certain level from not being challenged. I like to positively guide each student to help them reach their full potential.
4) Teach a student how to get good tone and play with better dynamics
- The guitar is an instrument that's supposed to resemble a small orchestra. It's important a student learns how to make the melody ring out in conjunction with the bass and harmonies of each piece. Also, a proper training on nail care and shape is important at this stage, if not earlier. You can only go so far in classical guitar if you don't learn how to shape your nails and care for them to get the best tone possible.
5) Teach a student how to read music beyond first and third positions.
- The guitar is unique in the sense that the same note can be found in many different areas along the fretboard. While it's easier on the fretting hand to play beyond the fifth position, it's also a bit trickier to read the notes in this position. A fluent proficiency in this area will open up a student to endless possibilities on the guitar.
Goals and objectives for students:
1) Work on advanced theory.
- An understanding of counterpoint, parallel, and oblique motion as it pertains to each piece of music gives the student better ideas on what makes music work, and how you can apply it to your own music. Understanding chord inversions, uses of diminished, dominant seventh, suspended, 9th, 11th chords, etc. will enable a student to have the highest mastery of the guitar.
2) Learn how to play advanced repertoire
- Want to shred like Yngwie Malmsteen, or play a metal solo like Kirk Hammett? Perhaps you want to play lightning fast blues like Stevie Ray Vaughan, or may learn how to play the intricate classical guitar style known as tremolo. This is where you go from average to great as a guitar player. I can help you learn these new techniques by encouraging you to start at a very slow tempo, getting the technique under your fingers, while eventually getting the pieces or songs up to speed. A lot of practice is required at this stage. If you can't commit an hour or two a day to playing when you first learn the techniques, it will be hard to advance, as the low hanging fruit has already been picked!
3) Learn how to solo more effectively over chord progressions.
-Sure you might know how to play solos by yourself, but you need to play with other musicians or record yourself and play over it to help develop your chops in realtime, where it counts. You can't go on stage not knowing how to build a solo, this is where I can help you by using scales and patterns that you can build on to make a great solo.
4) Increase a students memorizing proficiency
- I can look at a piece of music I've never played and get a feel for it so that when I start playing it for the first time I feel I have already played it before. This kind of visualization takes practice, but it can be learned. Music theory I teach will help you develop a better understanding of the repeating patterns that occur throughout every piece of music in some way or another. Music is by no means random; and while ideas and creativity help create music, there are many intervals that are repeated over and over that work harmonically (3rds, 6ths, octaves, 10th's etc.) I can help you memorize pieces of music by breaking the piece into sections, and finding patterns that exist that you will eventually be able to discover by yourself. In the end, memorization of music is really just an embodiment of your knowledge with recurring structures and forms found within the pieces.
5) Increase a students speed and efficiency
- No one wants to hear a guitarist that only has speed, but plays with no heart, and can't play the same thing twice without hacking the piece up. I believe that people learn pieces too quick without having a solid foundation. In heavy metal, and even fast classical guitarist, there are a lot of players that don't take the time to slowly build up to the speed that they eventually want to play at. It's only human to want to go from point a to b, or c quickly. I teach patience in music and using a visualization or thinking before you play mentality to make your playing effortless.
While these are some of the main objectives, I hope you find joy in your music, as it has brought me many years of joy. Interested in studying with me?
Contact me for reasonable rates at:
I currently teach from my home, but could also teach at your place. Evening lessons are all that's open at the moment.
I look forward to sharing the gift of music with you!