My Teaching Philosophy
Guitar lessons should be fun. I can teach you songs immediately, with patience and encouragement. My motto: Have fun, play songs. And with an added focus on rhythm and form in your lessons, you can build up your repertoire faster.
Your Lesson Goals
Do you want to learn how to strum your favorite songs? Or do you want to explore the realm of theory, scales, notation, and sight reading? Whatever your goals, I will help you reach them with a customized course of study that keeps you adequately challenged. If your goals change, I can change what you study.
I primarily teach Rock and Pop songs to my students, mostly because that’s what they ask for. I also teach Country, Blues, Classical, and, on occasion Metal and Jazz.
I specialize in teaching beginners. However, if you already have a good foundation of skills I can help you stretch your playing abilities even farther.
Lesson Availability and Rates
I am available to teach between the hours of 10AM and 6PM, Monday through Thursday. My rate is $65 an hour, $49 for ¾ of an hour, or $33 for a ½ hour. Payment is due at the beginning of the month for the number of lessons you plan on attending that month. I accept cash (exact change is required), check, or online payments through Venmo.
I conduct lessons at my home studio in Plymouth, Minnesota, approximately 2 miles North of Ridgedale Shopping Center.
Lesson and Study Materials
I have hundreds of chords charts for you to choose from, which are part of your tuition. If you want more detailed music (i.e. transcriptions of a shredding guitar solo), I recommend you purchase a published copy of the sheet music for download. I use musicnotes.com, but there are other websites that sell similar sheet music.
In addition to sheet music, you may want to use a lesson book, I typically use the Guitar Method series by Will Schmid and Greg Koch for beginning students of all ages interested in flat picking. For beginning students interested in the Classical style, I use A Modern Approach to Classical Guitar by Charles Duncan. For more advanced or motivated flat picking students, I use A Modern Method For Guitar by William Leavitt. If you already have a lesson book purchased, I am open to giving it a try.
Obviously, the more you practice, the better you get. But I know not everyone has two hours to spend each night hammering out the Lydian scale. But it is important to establish expectations regarding how much time you can dedicate to practicing during the week. It will help you stay on track to accomplish your goals.Try to spread your time over the week; don’t cram. If you can practice 30 minutes a day, five days a week, then you will make noticeable progress.
There are no strict guidelines that dictate at what age a person must be to learn guitar. That said, five is probably the youngest, but of course, each child is different. Sometimes, if you’re just not sure, the trial-by-fire method is a great test. After a lesson or two you will have a good idea if a child is ready to continue on or not.
Sometimes I hear people say they are too old to learn to play an instrument. I disagree. You can learn guitar no matter where you are in your life’s journey. In fact, it might take you in a completely new direction or light a new fire in you. I know a woman who waited until she was in her 60’s to learn the guitar. She told me she found her calling and had become completely hooked.
The Right Instrument
Guitars come in in ½, ¾, and full sizes. Most adults need full sizes. For kids, it is especially important to have an instrument that is the correct size. Often, kids try to play guitars that are too big for their bodies. Having said that, I have had bad luck finding 1/2-size guitars of decent quality and playability. If your child fits well with a 3/4-size and it is within your budget, it is much easier to find quality guitars in this size. Another thing you should consider is that the strings on an electric guitar are often easier to press down compared to the strings on an acoustic.
Contact me if you would like a full copy of my studio policies. Cancellations made 24 hours or more in advance of your lesson may be rescheduled or you may have your payment credited forward. If a refund is required, that may be arranged. Cancellations made within 24 hours will not be rescheduled and payment will not be credited or refunded. Please note, I am easy to get along with and am always interested in the fair, just, and logical way to work things out when problems arise.
- St. Olaf College – Bachelor of Arts
- Berklee College of Music – Jazz guitar and song writing studies
- University of Minnesota – Classical voice and composition studies