School Exams…Should You Put Guitar On Hold?

School exams for many students can add extra demands to their already hectic schedule. A common complaint from students is they simply don’t have the time to focus on exam preparation and guitar practice. In this case it can seem like putting guitar on hold is an obvious choice but in my experience this is…

How To Master The Guitar

The question of how to master guitar is often thought of as purely a technical one when in fact the technical aspect makes up 20% or less of your eventual success. We instinctively think that all that is required is knowing the steps involved as if we were piecing together a puzzle.   … The 80%…

How To Help Your Child To Want To Practice Guitar

Parents with children learning guitar are generally hopeful that their child will stick with guitar. Unfortunately all too often parents make the decision to stop their child’s lessons due to a lack of enthusiasm for practice. The truth is this generally occurs due to a lack of understanding. Parents who have children learning guitar or…

When will you get around to learning guitar?

I often get asked when is the best time to start guitar and my answer is RIGHT NOW! The problem is the ‘right now’ answer does not always feel right wouldn’t you agree? Perhaps you are moving house, about to go traveling, having a baby, have no money or are just not in the right…

Does measuring your practice make a difference?

Whenever a new student would begin lessons I would spend a portion of the first lesson asking them to fill in a daily practice log. Now most were happy to go along with my request but not all. Some students would feel it unnecessary, pointless or even over the top. Comments like “Guitar is just…

Guitar lessons at school… Good or bad idea?

Many parents receive a note from their child’s school offering guitar lessons at their school. This will seem appealing because it’s convenient and won’t require them to be driving their child to and from lessons.  My personal observations show that students who learn outside of school almost always do better for a very good reason….

Satriani Drinking the Magic Elixir

Joe Satriani is much more than just a great guitarist. What I admire as much as his playing is his teaching. I only just found out by watching this series of video interviews that Joe’s mother was a teacher which makes sense. Joe was always comes across as a natural teacher and its probably due…

5 misconceptions about learning guitar. No. 2.

People with short fingers don’t make good guitar players. I distinctly remember as a teen people commenting on the size of Jimi Hendrix’s hands. To a naive beginner with average fingers playing Hendrix style guitar seemed impossible. This affected me so much so that I didn’t even bother with Hendrix at the time and just…

Why do jazz guitar players play for pop stars?

Is it because they love the music? Were they really closet ABBA and Michael Jackson fans as kids but somehow ended up pursuing jazz because their guitar teacher or parents forced them into it? Perhaps but I don’t think it would be the case for most jazz guitarists playing with pop stars. You might argue…

“How do I get my child to practice music without the tears?”

If you are a parent with a child who refuses to practice their musical instrument it can at times feel like a pointless waste of time. Most parents in this situation are left wondering what to do and whether there really is a solution. There are two common schools of thought in this debate. Lets start…

Why are you just dreaming about guitar?

What astounds me are the millions of people who watch shows like The Voice or Idol wishing they too could be up there. Its as though the people standing on stage playing guitar and singing are from a different planet and totally out of reach for everyone else. I think chasing fame is one thing…

Your child not practicing guitar? 5 things NOT to do

1. Do not stop their guitar lessons. Some parents will use this tactic out of frustration but the result is nobody wins. Talk to their guitar teacher and if they are unable to help then find a new guitar teacher. 2. Do not yell at them. Some parents resort to screaming at their children but its never…