Guitar School Student Concert Excerpts

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iLead, Golden Valley, Inspire,
Community Collaborative,
Sky Mountain, Blue Ridge, Cabriilo Point, Mission Vista
& Excel
(through Long Beach School of Music)


All Styles for All Ages & Skill Levels   Torrance & Long Beach


(310) 918-0439




Free Online Lessons


3993 E Pacific Coast Hwy

Torrance, CA 90505

 "We teach the songs and the styles of music that you want to learn."


Now Registering


What our music students are saying:

Emanuele Bufano (30): Bass

"I love the way we get into funky grooves during lessons."


Brian (15): Guitar

"I've learned so much from taking guitar lessons and I would recommend the Guitar School to anybody that wants to learn how to play guitar."

Christie (17): Guitar

"The Guitar School is a great place to learn. Its relaxed atmosphere and friendly instructors keep me inspired. My teacher was helpful in preparing me for South High Jazz Band, which I have now been in for two years."


Philip (15): Guitar

"I have been going to this guitar school for half a year now, and I sincerely believe that it is one of the best schools. Lessons have helped increase my skills exponentially. Dan is an excellent teacher who is crazy at guitar. His teaching lets me understand guitar music and akes me play better. Taking guitar lessons at this school is one of the best decisions I've ever made."

Kimberly (6): Piano

"She's a really good teacher because she gives me a little bit at a time."


—Dale Bolen: Guitar

"Lessons are fun and instructive. Dan’s approach to learning music – finding the lessons within my favorite songs – has dramatically advanced my technical abilities and knowledge of music theory. I’ve taken lessons off and on since high school, but never learned the “roadmaps” to navigate the fretboard– and not for lack of trying. After studying with Dan, I can solo! In key! Playing guitar is really fun now".

More Testimonials



Personal Guitar Training with Mark Fitchett

(School Owner)

What Mark Teaches:

Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Composition, Improvisation,


Jazz, Blues, Rock, Country


Jazz Chord Melody, Fusion/Metal Jazz, Standard Jazz, Improvisation

Locations: Redondo Beach, Long Beach, Rancho Palos Verdes



Event bookings click here



Instructor: Lisa Kato

(School Owner)

Teaches: Piano, Improvisation
Locations: Redondo Beach, Long Beach, Rancho Palos Verdes

more about Lisa

Instructor: Mark Fitchett

(School Owner)

Teaches: Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Ukulele, Improvisation
Styles: Jazz, Blues, Rock, Country
Locations: Redondo Beach, Long Beach, Rancho Palos Verdes
more about Mark


Instructor: Mark Shark

Teaches: Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Improvisation, Rock School Summer Camp
Styles: Jazz, Blues, Rock, Country
Locations: Redondo Beach

Performances: Mark Shark plays and records with many artists in the South Bay and greater Los Angeles. He has toured the US and Europe extensively.  Mark Shark is also the author of  the book "The Tao of Tuning" from Mel Bay Publications, hailed as "One of the most unique and important books ever written for guitar." (--Randall Wixen, Wixen Music Publishing)

Instructor: Chris Price
Teaches: Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Bass, Rock School Summer Camp
Locations: Redondo Beach, Rancho Palos Verdes

Instructor: Beau Simpson

Teaches: Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Improvisation

Rock School Summer Camp
Styles: Jazz, Blues, Rock, Country
Locations: Redondo Beach

Instructor: Dan Krier

Teaches: Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, kulele, Improvisation
Styles: Jazz, Blues, Rock, Country
Locations: Redondo Beach, Long Beach, Rancho Palos Verdes
More about Dan


Instructor: Leeora Kronen

Teaches: Piano, Improvisation
Locations: Redondo Beach, Long Beach, Rancho Palos Verdes

Instructor: Erika Snow

Teaches: Piano
Styles: Classical
Locations: Long Beach, Redondo Beach

Guest Artists

Guest Artist: Joe Kennedy

Teaches: Piano, Improvisation
Locations: Redondo Beach, Long Beach, Rancho Palos Verdes

more about Joe

Guest Artist: Terry Plumeri

Teaches: Composition, Conducting, Double Bass
Styles: Classical, Modern, Jazz
Locations: Rancho Palos Verdes, Long Beach, Redondo Beach

Performances: Terry plays and records with many artists in the greater Los Angeles Area.  He has toured the US and Europe

with major artists. Learn more about Terry Plumeri.

Woodwinds & Brass

Instructor: Terje Lie

Teaches: Saxophone, Clarinet, Flute, Trumpet, Guitar
Styles: Jazz, Blues, Rock, Pop
Locations: Redondo Beach, Rancho Palos Verdes


Instructor: Gary Ferguson

Gary is a drummer that teaches all styles and all levels.

Styles: Jazz, Blues, Rock, Pop, Fusion, Funk, Country
Locations: Redondo Beach, Rancho Palos Verdes

contact Gary 310-739-4053



Instructor: Tony Alvarez

Teaches: Electric Bass Guitar, Upright Bass, Improvisation
Styles: Jazz, Blues, Rock, Country
Locations: Redondo Beach

Performances: Tony plays and records with many bands in the South Bay as well as the greater Los Angeles Area.

Instructor: Rick Hollander

Teaches: Bass Guitar, Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Improvisation
Styles: Jazz, Blues, Rock, Country
Locations: Redondo Beach

Performances: Rick plays and records with many artists in the South Bay as well as the greater Los Angeles area.

Guitar School Friends & Associates:

Kamloops, BC Canada
Rick's Guitar Lessons

(250) 320-7760



Why Music Education Matters

Custom Search
All Ages    All Levels    All Styles


Can You Teach Yourself Guitar From

Books, DVDs and YouTube?

Yes you can. Beginning guitar is not advanced rocket science, and most of you could teach yourself a bunch of chords, learn some basic songs and pick up some cool riffs to impress your friends.

In fact if that's all you want to do great, mission accomplished, and at no cost to you. All you've got to do is wade through the hundreds of thousands of free lesson, tab and video sites available and figure out which ones are good. So don't read any further, this article is aimed at the persons that not only want to become good at playing the guitar, but also really understand what they are doing.

Getting What You Paid For

The big issue is that so much information in "web land" is presented by total beginners, who in reality, are not qualified and could never actually get a job teaching in a real music studio. That's not to say that there's not some really great lessons expertly presented. However, this leads to a major problem. How do you know what to follow? The short answer is you don't.

As a professional guitar coach who started many years before the internet, I find most of the information my students download and bring to a lesson totally amateur and just wrong most of the time. I tell students is that if you like a certain artist just buy their tab book, and I will help them through it. The same goes for YouTube lessons, there are some great ones out there, but...

The argument against online guitar education applies to books and CD/DVD methods as well. The difference is that the information is more than likely presented by a knowledgeable expert. Still, read the following about self-teaching


OK, lets' assume you've actually found a few reputable sources online (or a book/dvd etc.) The four biggest obstacles with doing it yourself is that:

1 You don't always where to start,

2 Sometimes it's hard to tell if you are doing it right

3 Having the discipline on your own to keep up the follow through.

4 You can't ask questions

For many this very frustrating and a lot of potential players give up and blame themselves. Just trust me on this, most of the time it's not you.

Self Taught Famous Guys?

OK that's really easy. Quit your job, camp on various friend's sofas, starve, play guitar 16 hours a day, starve some more. Do that for a few years and you'll probably get really good. Next! Seriously most people starting out aren't able to put so much much time into so lessons are a shortcut. A good instructor can offer insights that he or she has gathered over the years.

Get an Instructor

The biggest advantage of having an instructor in front of you is that when your frustration is at a high point and everything sounds bad, it's really useful to have someone tell you "It's ok, it should sound like that at this point, and in fact you are doing everything right," or,” here are a couple of corrections so just keep practicing and it will work." The teacher also has the ability try multiple approaches that online lessons, method books, CDs and DVDs cannot.


  • Online, how do you know if the information is correct?
  • Online, you don't always know if you are doing things right.
  • An instructor can modify their approach to your learning style.
  • An Instructor can be asked questions.
  • An instructor can demonstrate many ways.

So while I think it's fun and challenging to teach yourself and by all means go ahead and keep doing it, but do yourself a favor and check in with a good teacher once in a while, if not on a regular basis to keep you on track.


What We Will Do For You

Even for someone with no prior musical experience our easy to follow instruction makes learning uncomplicated and fun – pretty much effortless.

Every instructor is committed to finding the approach that works best for each person, and is patient and encouraging. Students can work at their own pace so they never have to feel stressed out.

So pick the style of music and songs you want to play. Rock, jazz, blues – you name it, we’ll teach it.

These are just some of the guitar styles our instructors teach at the Guitar School.

Modern Rock — R & B — Campfire Guitar — Country — Pop — Folk — Blues — Gospel — Swing — Rockabilly — Funk — Punk — Classic Rock — Metal — Reggae —  Ska—  Classical — Jazz — Fingerstyle Guitar

Ask yourself this question:

“How would it feel to be able to play the guitar right now?”

Fantastic! That’s the usual answer. Imagine that amazed look on your friends and family’s faces if you picked up your guitar (or any instrument for that matter) right this instant and started playing yours and everyone’s favorite songs with no effort whatsoever. That would feel pretty good.

South Bay has its own School of Rock, The Guitar School, where popular rock music is the primary medium used to teach standard music theory and technique.

The student picks the style of music and songs they want to play – gone are the days when “Yankee Doodle” and “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” were the songs every beginning student had to learn. Nowadays, it’s more likely than not to be the opening riff to “Smoke on the Water,” by Deep Purple, Black Sabbath’s “Iron Man,” or the latest Green Day or Coldplay song.

Instructors create the lessons around the music a student is learning. So, besides learning the song they like (which keeps them motivated), they’re also learning basic music fundamentals.

Classic rock from the 60’s & 70’s is so popular with the younger kids that it’s hard to believe that many of the bands are no longer in existence. There are more requests to learn music from the likes of Hendrix, The Beatles, and Led Zepplin, than from any of the newer groups. Older punk music like the Sex Pistols, and the Ramones, dominate the student’s greatest hits list as well.  

Then there are the student concerts throughout the year where they get to show off what they’ve learned by performing in a band on stage, in front of a live audience. Students also get to participate in performance workshops and jam sessions at different times as well.

All styles are taught. One student, Brent Canter, started with rock guitar at age 12, and gradually switched to jazz. At 18 he won a full scholarship to the UCLA jazz program.

Girls want to rock! The number of female guitar students (especially 8-15) has been growing. 25-35% of our students at any given time are female

More what we will do for you


We are dedicated to providing our students with the best possible learning environment. At the Redondo Beach Guitar School, Palos Verdes Guitar School, and Long Beach Guitar School our instructors realize everyone learns differently.

Our highly knowledgeable teachers are committed to finding the approach that works best for each individual.

Whether a student just wants to learn enough to have fun playing a few favorite songs, or is an aspiring professional, our instructors will develop a customized music lesson plan especially tailored to fit their specific musical needs and interests.

Our instructors include university graduates, as well as working professionals with many years of performing, recording and teaching experience.

We are not an electronics/appliance store that incidentally sells some guitars teaches a couple of music lessons. That means 100% of our resources go towards providing the highest quality music programs and education experience for our students.

For The Younger Students

For parents that want their children to do more than sit around watching TV or playing video games, music lessons may be the answer.

It's not just music lessons but life skills. Parents who enroll their kids in music lessons are having their children involved in a productive, educational activity which is culturally enriching, and which develops the brain, intellect, motor skills, self-esteem and discipline.


EDUCATION! Development of WORK HABITS and DISCIPLINE. Getting the child away from the TV, video games, and hanging out at the mall.

For The More Experienced

Beyond the basics, many musicians feel that they aren't progressing fast enough in their knowledge and playing abilities; or that what they've learned seems scattered and unrelated. Instructors can create a custom program designed to fill in the gaps.

For All Instrumentalists

Blues, rock and jazz improvisation; performance skills, and practical music theory are the order of the day.

Topics include improvisational techniques, scales beyond the basic major and minor, phrasing, chord progressions, progressive scale techniques, arpeggios, intervals, advanced chord construction, rhythm, scale and chord theory, definitions, transposition and musical styles.



Your lessons are on a once a week basis, on the same day, same time, and with the same instructor. Usually they are 1/2 hour long, although some prefer hour lessons.

They are one-on-one, so the instruction is based on the student's progress.

We don't do group classes, but can accommodate two family members simultaneously (father & son, two siblings, mother & daughter, etc.) with one instructor and charge you a discounted student price. As well, there are workshops, jam sessions and summer camp opportunities open to all students currently enrolled.

We don't charge a registration fee but require new students to come in and register before starting lessons.

We supply the majority of guitar and bass instructional material at a very low cost to the student, so you don't have to worry about finding and buying books and materials. Click Here for information on Getting the Most Out of Music Lessons.

Several instructors have flexible hours that can accommodate homeschooled children earlier in the day.

Hours of Operation

Monday-Friday, 12 - 9 PM Sunday, 9 AM - 6 PM

Note: Alternate lesson times are sometimes available depending on individual instructor's schedules. Call us with your specific time requests especially if you homeschool.



Time slots are available on a first come, first serve basis.

The basic rates as of January 2023 are as follows:

1/2 hour lessons on all instruments,


$30 per class, $120 per month or $150 if there are 5 weeks

1 hour lessons on all instruments,

$60 per class, $240 per month or $300 if there are 5 weeks

Some instructor's rates may be higher depending on their specialties.

Advanced Piano $80 per hour and $40 per 1/2 hour

Tuition for the month is paid in full at the beginning of each month.

All legitimate cancellations will taken as make-ups only and not credited to the following month's tuition.




What We Teach and Where

  • Guitar Lessons (Redondo Beach, Torrance Long Beach & Palos Verdes)
  • Piano & Keyboard Lessons (Redondo Beach, Torrance, Long Beach & Palos Verdes)
  • Bass Lessons (Redondo Beach & Long Beach & Palos Verdes)
  • Mandolin Lessons (Redondo Beach)
  • Ukulele Lessons (Redondo Beach & Long Beach)
  • Banjo Lessons (Redondo Beach & Long Beach)
  • Drum Lessons (Long Beach, Hermosa Beach, Redondo Beach) more info
  • Theory Lessons (Redondo Beach & Palos Verdes & Long Beach)
  • Improvisation Lessons (Redondo Beach & Palos Verdes & Long Beach)
  • Harmony Lessons (Redondo Beach & Palos Verdes & Long Beach)
  • Voice Lessons (Long Beach)

Location of instruction on the various instruments is subject to change. Also, we are always adding new instructors and instruments so don't hesitate to call us if you don't see the instrument you want to study.

All Styles — All Levels — All Ages

  •  Workshops                                                                                        
  •  Music Theory
  •  Performance Technique
  •  Sight Reading
  •  Improvisation
  •  Song Writing
  •  Composition & Arranging
  •  Advanced Technique
  •  Repertoire & Songs
  • Homeschool Programs





For information about the school's competitive classical piano and jazz piano program click on piano lessons.


South Bay School of Music & The Guitar School Benefits

Here are some of the reasons that South Bay School of Music and Guitar School is considered one of the best music schools in the South Bay.

These are just a few of the things the school has been doing, or will be implementing in the upcoming year.

  • Instructional Material

The school has been supplying guitar students with low cost material so there is usually no need to buy any extra books.

Click here for pictures of various recitals.


For the intermediate to advanced students; this will be an opportunity to get together with other student musicians and play. All students are welcome to come and listen.

  • Variety of Programs

  • Flexibility in Teaching Styles and Methods

  • Greater Variety of Styles Taught Than Other Schools

  • Flexible Hours For The Homeschooled

Some of the styles we teach include:

Fingerstyle Guitar — Modern Rock — R & B — Campfire Guitar — Country — Pop — Folk — Blues — Gospel — Swing — Rockabilly — Funk — Punk — Classic Rock — Metal — Reggae —  Ska—  Classical — Jazz

Great Atmosphere, Convenient Hours & Location


3993 E Pacific Coast Hwy, Torrance, CA 90505

Our versatile instructors have excellent professional and educational backgrounds. They are a hip, knowledgeable staff with an extreme passion for teaching

Specialties That Include:

  • Reading Music (standard notation and tablature)
  • Writing Music
  • Composition
  • Improvisation
  • Styles
  • Songwriting
  • Music Theory
  • Summer Camp
  • Homeschool Programs
  • Special Needs Education

Reasonable Rates

Check out News and Gallery to find out about our last recital and to see pictures.

Guitar Lessons

We believe that the majority of students get more out of their lessons, and progress at a much faster rate if they can learn the styles of music that they love. Every student is taught the same fundamentals in regards to music theory. The only difference is, is that one person may be taught their "do re mi's" with their favorite rock band while another may learn the same basic theory, but with Mozart.


All of the guitar styles are also taught on the bass. Everything in the "For The More Experienced" applies equally to the more advanced bass student.

Slap bass, Funk, Jazz/Blues walking bass are popular styles among bass students.

Our bass students are taught to interact with drummers and guitarists. Emphasis is placed on the ability to create bass lines and grooves.


Four and five string styles taught.  More than just arrangements, emphasis is also placed on learning the neck, playing in all keys, chords, accompaniment styles, improvisation and other styles such as jazz, blues and rock.


Traditional and contemporary styles taught.


Traditional and contemporary styles taught.


$10,000 in guitar, bass, piano and music theory lesson scholarships to be given away

The guitar school in celebration of it's 10th anniversary in the South Bay is giving away up to $10,000 in guitar, bass, piano and music theory lesson scholarships.

To win these scholarships, students need to write an essay up to 500 words about why they like music, and why they want to play the guitar, bass or piano, or study music theory.

The contest is open to all Guitar School students and to all residents of the South Bay area ages 8 to 18.

The contest starts as of 3/1/06 and the winners will be announced by 9/1/06. Deadline for entering is July 31, 2006.

Put your name, your age, your birthday and what school you attend on a separate piece of paper. Include address and phone numbers. Do not write anything on your essay. All essays must be hand written.

10th Anniversary Contest Rules

Write an essay up to 500 words stating why you love music and want to learn to play the guitar, bass or piano (or study music theory). If you already play tell us what made you want to start and why you want to continue. Entrants do not need to be current students at The Guitar School. The contest is open to all residents of the South Bay. The following are the age categories: 8-10, 11-13, 14-16, 17-18. Scholarships will range from one month of 1/2 hour lessons to 1 full year. Scholarships are non-transferrable. Scholarships must be used in the 2006-2007 teaching year. If a student stops part way through the year no cash value will be given for the remainder of the lessons. Winners give the school permission to use their photos and essays (or portions of) in school advertising.

New to Music Lessons?

Learn it right the first time.

Redondo Beach Guitar School, Peninsula Guitar School, Peninsula Music and South Bay School of Music serve the South Bay areas including Palos Verdes, Rolling Hills Estates, Rancho Palos Verdes, Palos Verdes Estates, Torrance, Hermosa Beach, Manhattan Beach, Redondo Beach, Lomita, El Segundo, Hawthorne, Lawndale, San Pedro, Wilmington, Harbor City, Gardena, Hawthorne and Carson.

(310) 918-0439

We are now also in Long Beach!

In Long Beach

3840 Woodruff Avenue, Suite 109, Long Beach, CA 90808

Check out the Long Beach School of Music and the Long Beach Guitar School location serving Long Beach, Los Alamitos, Rossmore, Cypress, Cerritos, Lakewood, Seal Beach, Orange County and Signal Hill.

The Long Beach School of Music is located at 3840 Woodruff, Suite 109 (near Carson), only five minutes from the 405 freeway or five minutes from the 605 freeway. It is very convenient to many Los Angeles locations.

Driving Directions:

We are not currently offering group preschool music classes

Preschool Music Classes

preschool children coloring piano picture

We are not currently offering group preschool music classes

South Bay School of Music/Guitar School offers preschool music classes designed to encourage the musical development and appreciation in preschool-aged children. In this group setting, children take critical first steps towards socialization, cooperation and group interaction skills. At the same time they are involved in a discipline that; develops the brain, intellect and motor skills; improves listening and concentration skills; and enhances math and literacy skills.

Our young students will enjoy the hands-on experiencing of music as they participate in fun musical activities, games and exercises that encourage sensory awareness and support the unique learning styles of their age group.

Through sound; hearing, vocalizing, speaking and singing

Improving language, vocal & speech development, memorization skills


Through sight; visual games, drawing and coloring, identifying music symbols

Learning spatial relationships & memorization skills


Through movement; dancing, timing and rhythm games

Improving motor skills, timing, balance, spatial concepts & coordination


Children will learn music symbol identification, rhythm, counting, and improvisation while developing basic music skills through encouraged exploration of their individual creative sides. They will learn various musical concepts on keyboards, guitars, stringed instruments and percussion as well as be exposed to other types of instruments and musical styles.

Through singing, moving, listening, and playing musical instruments, our goal is to inspire a love of music that will stay with a child for life.

Preschool music classes are 45 minutes long and meet twice a week for 8 to 12 weeks (depending on length of the quarter)

Classes start the second week of September, 2010

Preschool Music Class Schedule

Call for information

(310) 918-0439


Autism Spectrum Disorder and other special needs students.

In the last 10 years our instructors have had many opportunities to work with special needs children, especially those with autism spectrum disorder.

Our music schools are run with the philosophy that all students are not alike and should be educated in the way that is most helpful to the student; that group or classroom instruction is not as individualized as most students need in order for them to achieve the greatest success; and finally, that all instruction should be on a one-on-one basis so as to fully focus on a students specific needs and interests.


This customized approach to teaching fits the special needs students since no one program or approach will benefit all students, special needs or not. One-on-one music lessons in a regular music school environment are an opportunity for these students to participate in a mainstream activity without the distraction of other students in the room.

 Guitar School Locations

 3993 E Pacific Coast Hwy, Torrance, CA 90505

Redondo Beach Guitar School

.Guitar School and South Bay School of Music serves the South Bay area including Palos Verdes, Rolling Hills Estates, Rancho Palos Verdes, Palos Verdes Estates, Torrance, Hermosa Beach, Manhattan Beach, Redondo Beach, Lomita, El Segundo, Hawthorne, Lawndale, San Pedro, Wilmington, Harbor City, Gardena, Hawthorne and Carson.

Long Beach Guitar School
Long Beach School of Music, 3840 Woodruff Avenue, Suite 109 Long Beach, CA 90808

Check out the Long Beach School of Music and the Long Beach Guitar School location serving Long Beach, Los Alamitos, Rossmore, Cypress, Cerritos, Lakewood, Seal Beach, Orange County and Signal Hill.

We will be offering one-on-one and group guitar lessons online in real time so stay tuned.

Los Angeles Guitar School


with Bobby Doucette


Watch for Orange County locations serving:

Serving all areas of Orange County, California, including the cities of- Aliso Viejo, Anaheim, Anaheim Hills, Brea, Buena Park, Corona del Mar, Costa Mesa, Coto de Caza, Crystal Cove, Cypress, Dana Point, Dove Canyon, El Toro, Foothill Ranch, Fountain Valley, Garden Grove, Huntington Beach, Irvine, La Habra, La Palma, Ladera Ranch, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Woods, Lake Forest, Los Alamitos, Midway City, Mission Viejo, Modjeska Canyon, Newport Beach, Newport Coast, North Tustin, Orange, Orange Park Acres, Placentia, Portola Hills, Rancho Santa Margarita, Robinson Ranch, Rossmoor, San Clemente, San Joaquin Hills, San Juan Capistrano, Santa Ana, Santiago Canyon, Seal Beach, Silverado Canyon, Stanton, Sunset Beach, Surfside, Talega, Trabuco Canyon, Tustin, Villa Park, Westminster, and Yorba Linda

San Diego locations serving:

University City, Rancho Penasquitios, Point Loma, South Park, Mission Hills, Serra Mesa, Santee, Poway, La Jolla, Del Mar, Carmel Valley, Lake Murray, Coronado, Del Cerro, Torrey Pines, 4-S Ranch, Scripps Miramar Ranch, University Heights, San Carlos, Grossmont, Sorrento Valley, M.C.A.S. Miramar, Solana Beach, Mission Bay, La Playa, North Park, Rancho Bernardo, Torrey Hills, Rancho Santa Fe, Carmel Mountain Ranch, North City, Crown Point, Ocean Beach, Uptown, U.C.S.D, Centre City, Midtown, Navajo, Sabre Springs, Rancho Encantada, Birdland, Lemon Grove, Miramar, Black Mountain Ranch, Tierrasanta, Bay Park, Grantville, Bay Ho, Loma Portal, Old Town, Mira Mesa, Allied Gardens, Clairemont, Mission Village, Linda Vista, Mission Beach, Bankers Hill, Chesterton, Roseville, Fleetridge, Peninsula, Kensington, Pacific Beach, Morena, Mission Valley, Park West, Little Italy, Azure Vista, Fairbanks Ranch, Marston Hills and Sunset Cliffs.



1) "How much do I have to practice?"

Many are under the impression that hours upon hours per week are needed to get good at playing the guitar.

Unless you are planning on being a guitar superstar in the first few weeks, this is simply not true. If you can find 20 minutes to an hour a day, four or five days out of the week, you will noticeably progress. Generally, students find the more they accomplish, the more they are encouraged to practice.

2) "What if I have no musical talent?"

Some worry about being "tone deaf" or that they have "no rhythm." Something we truly believe is that everyone has some sort of innate musical talent. Initially, some may appear to have it more obviously than others, but there are many instances when a student who seemed to be not getting it at first became the one that surpassed the rest.

3) "What if I don't have a guitar?"

Guitars can be purchased relatively inexpensively. For under $300 one can get a decent acoustic guitar, or an electric guitar and a small amplifier. Used instruments can even be less.

4) "What if I don't know how to read music?"

We can teach you, and our instructors will make it an enjoyable learning process. However, since most of what guitar does in popular styles is rhythm accompaniment, beginning guitar is usually is taught through a variety of other methods that make more sense to that style. As a student progresses beyond the beginning stages they will find that reading music is useful for more advanced musical understanding. Students are encouraged to make reading a part of their learning experience.

5) "What if I've never played a musical instrument before?"

Learning a musical instrument does not require any background. Ultimately every musician has started from zero. All that is necessary is the desire, and a willingness to practice.

6) "What if my hands or fingers are too big or too small?"

It is extremely rare that this ever true. Once a student realizes what needs to be stretched and how to work on this then they find that it's not as difficult as they imagined. Having a qualified instructor look at the individual is recommended.

7) "Why can't I teach myself?"

We are of the opinion that instructional materials such as videos, DVDs, internet downloads, books and CDs, regardless of how good they are produced, are best studied with a competent teacher. It's not the student's fault! As good as these learning aids may be, the problem is, is that you can't ask them questions. Since everyone learns differently, there may be an issue if the method utilized by the various instructional materials is not one that works for you. This is where the experienced private instructor who can customize their approach to the individual enters into the picture. Once the basics have been mastered, then the various instructional materials available are much easier to deal with.

8) "How long will I have to take lessons before I can play anything?"

Although this is a tricky question to answer because every student is different, the average is between two to four weeks before a student can start playing some simpler songs.

9) "How long to I have to keep taking lessons?"

Our goal is to make the student self-sufficient so that after they learn the basics they can teach themselves. This could happen after just a few lessons. One doesn't necessarily need to keep taking lessons to learn enough to become a competent player. However, once a student gets involved in the guitar they often find that they enjoy the learning process so much that they want to keep it up and study techniques beyond the basic chordal accompaniment styles.

10) "Can you learn anything in a group class?"

Yes, group classes can be useful as an introduction to playing an instrument. The problem is that everyone learns differently. This makes it difficult for an instructor to address each student's individual concerns as most group classes tend to be short and have a large number of students.

11) "Is it better to start on an acoustic or an electric guitar?"

They are both good. It depends on the quality. Often we recommend an electric to the younger children because of the ease of playing an electric.


  1. Eleven Commonly Asked Questions About Guitar Lessons, by Mark Fitchett
  2. Blues, An indigenous American Music, by Mark Fitchett
  3. Charlie Parker and the Rise of Bebop, by Lisa Michiko Kato
  4. Musicianship and the Mechanics of Playing in a Band, by Mark Fitchett
  5. Guitar Fret Spacing, An overview by Oliver Robinson
  6. Bud Powell, by Mark Fitchett
  7. A Brief History of the Guitar, by Mark Fitchett
  8. An Analysis of "Peace" by Ornette Coleman, by Tim Wingate
  9. Guitar Education: The Ivory Tower vs. The Real World, by Mark Fitchett
  10. Getting The Most Out of Music Lessons, by Lisa Kato & Mark Fitchett



guitar students at guitar recital in redondo beach

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