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Private Instruction is about understanding that everyone learns differently and lessons are geared towards having students making music as soon as possible. The objective is to play music learning songs that are both current or classic and most important of all is to have fun doing it.
Beginner students will learn how to hold the Guitar and the Guitar pick and begin reading chord diagrams and finger placement. Then will follow up with counting time, moving from chord to chord with no pauses in between each chord change hearing the chord changes and melody. Intermediate students build on their current knowledge expanding their repertoire in ways they never anticipated and advancing the playing skills to a new level.
Teaching Music Theory for the Guitar is different than on a piano. The Grace Vandendool Theory books are a good starting point for an understanding of how music works explaining Key Signatures, Intervals, Scales , Modes, Harmonizing scale degrees to name just a few. For example, Piano keys are laid out in front of you in a numerical fashion. If you want to go up a Perfect Fifth you simply count up five white keys. On the Guitar the process of counting up a perfect fifth is not the same. When teaching Music Theory text books are very useful but learning one on one with a teacher can further explain how this technical information applies to what is being played on a Guitar.
Teaching Mandolin is fun as this instrument is really a Guitar strung upside down. Using the Mel Bay Deluxe Edition students quickly learn a number of chords that are easy for beginners because they involve using open strings. Students learn Blues and Rock styles which goes from the basics right up to Ragtime, Mandolin Duets and improvising.Contemporary choices of material to learn can range from Taylor Swift to the classic sounds of REM. Blues Mandolin style is rooted in the music of Ry Cooder and Yank Rachel.
Electric Guitar lessons are geared to students personal taste learning basic chords, scales, timing and playing the easiest of songs as soon as possible. Classic Rock is a popular choice for students learning from recordings of the Beatles, Led Zepplin, Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton, Dire Straits and use that format to build improvisational skills. These skills can be easily transferred to explore music outside the realm of Classic Rock such as Taylor Swift, Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins or Oasis.
12 String Guitar
12 Twelve String Guitar is all kinds of fun. The same, only different? Yes and no, here is why. Students are introduced to open tunings and fingerstyle ideas that will get every guitar player to think outside the box. Bottleneck Guitar and compositional approaches to playing Rock and Blues are taught while learning the "rock guitar" 12 string styles often associated with Led Zepplin, Bon Jovi and David Bowie. For intermediate guitarists looking to expand their boundries, students would enjoy learning the finger style guitar often associated with Leo Kottke and John Fahey .
This photo was taken by David Segal when he was in Portugal. David has been taking private instruction in fingerstyle Guitar with me for a couple of years. I I loved this photo from the moment that I saw it. Thanks Dave.