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What can a guitar teacher do for me?


RudyH

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A good guitar instructor is going to give you one-on-one lessons. If you are committed to those lessons, and actually prepare during the week for what he or she is teaching you, then you'll learn and grow as a musician. But you have to practice at least 20 minutes a day the techniques he shows you.

 

For me it was hybrid picking, that banjo-style pick-n-finger technique.

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If you really like to study and practice, a guitar teacher can do much for you. There are a lot of things that the books and videos can't help you with, as they can't give you a feedback on what you are doing and neither negociate and help you build a solid study routine.

 

A GOOD guitar teacher can give you a lot of information becuse he will have experience. Experience on stage, off-stage studying, practicing, seting the guitar and all that stuff.

 

But the key thing is that you'll be able to talk to him. You'll be able to exchange. And you'll both grow =)

 

Isn't it cute?

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It depends on the guitar teacher of course.

 

I had a guitar teacher that I took lessons from about 12 years ago. He was a really cool guy, and extremely knowledgeable, but he had NO structured lessons. The lessons would consist of him asking me what I wanted to learn that day, I would tell him and he would show me. I guess that might work well for people who generally know what they are doing but want some guidance.. and that was me, but I guess I just wanted something more structured.

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I too have been learning from tabs, books, videos, etc.

 

I did not want to take lessons before because I could not move my fingers, why waste your money on extremely basic lessons?. Now that I can move my fingers a bit more I will take lessons for several reasons.

 

1 - Feedback from the teacher.

2 - A good teacher will show you how to use your equipment better than you already do.

3 - Lessons will keep me in check, I am bad about practicing.

4 - Jamming with a professional.

5 - In my case: Nashville is full of great musicians, why not learn from them? I just found a guy that plays with a lot of people including Eric Clapton.

 

And the top reason: my last 2 jams have been disaster, I got my butt handed on a silver tray by my jamming friend. I was hanging in there before that but my lack of recent dedication shows.

 

My pride hurts. I was able to shine a couple of times and add a lead on a song I never heard before on the fly but other than that, ouch.

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Certain things in music, and anything else for that matter, are only learned by experience. Knowledge is a great thing, but it can only take you so far without knowing the specifics for the application of that knowledge. That is where the teacher or more experienced player will help you most, leaning HOW to use what you know.

 

Two other things you can learn from a veteran, are tricks and shortcuts. Most working guitar players have developed many tricks and shortcuts you don't necessarily find in a Mel Bay book or Stephen Grossman instructional DVD. To not have to spend years STUMBLING upon those by yourself will put you way ahead of the game.

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The best way to describe the impact that an experienced musician can give you is the equivalent of going on warp drive.

Notice that I didn't use the word teacher.

Some people were never meant to teach.

 

There were plenty of times that had it not been for the input of a fellow musician, I would never had figured out what amounts to the basic skills of a competent musician, namely that of being able to play chords, chord progressions and those skills that let the musician play in the basic genres.

 

The experience of a veteran also can be seen in the way that many useless excercises are avoided.

The impact of a basic, functional, ergonomic mindset is one that ultimately results in an accelerated learning mode that puts the musician, or in my case, groups or bands that in very short time are launched into the music scene.

 

The one thing that I have seen work successfully is that of having the musician produce sound as soon as possible.

From the first minutes, the individual or group is performing, and withing seconds you get the "hey mom, look what I can do".

Something they don't tell you in teaching college.

Something that you see in Basic Training where you are both scared to death and a few minutes later you feel like superman.

The approach is that of jumping over obstacles.

 

Formalized training on the theoretical side of the house has its place, but is not as important as developing skills that result in a positive, confident mindset.

This is particularly important in developing the mindset necessary for working within the different genres.

The guitarist learns that there are standards and classics that no matter where they go, they are expected to know.

 

Above all things, the musician learns the more important terms and concepts necessary for that same musicaian's being able to communicate with other musicians.

Its all a question of knowledge, skill, confidence and communication.

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It's important to take lessons when you start so you can learn proper technique and all that. They are very important for learning and comprehending theory.

 

That's why you should learn from a guy who teaches at a conservatory or a college. Those guys are usually much better at teaching you how music works so your not just copying riffs from your idols. So many guitarists don't learn theory and it really helps in jamming and composing.

 

I'm self taught because my first teacher was just a bum who could play KISS really well. I did however, take ten or so lessons from a very respected guitar teacher from a conservatory in Boston when I was doing college auditions. In those ten lessons I learned everything I needed to know about technique, soloing, chord structure, and how to continually improve myself as a player.

 

I also suggest that once you feel your lessons are coming to a plateau to branch out on your own and develop your own style. Playing guitar is a lot more fun when you can express yourself through music without trying to mimic someone else.

 

Good luck and I hope you find a good teacher.

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