The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires. – William Arthur Ward
I have an excellent guitar teacher. I’ve been working with him for 3 or 4 months now. My goal was to learn some music theory and some techniques for playing lead guitar. I had learned a lot but I wasn’t satisfied with my progress on playing lead. It was coming slow and I didn’t seem to be making much progress.
So, two lessons ago, I brought up my frustrations to my guitar teacher. I looked him right in the eye and asked if I was really cut out to play lead since it seemed to be coming very slowly for me. I asked him if I should just focus on being an excellent rhythm guitarist. He looked right back at me, paused for a moment and said “No.”
He said what I needed was to learn a lead from some songs that I enjoy. We would then attack the lead playing combined with music theory from that perspective. I said okay. Let’s give it a try. I had to pick a song I wanted to learn the lead on. So, I choose one (Wish You Were Here – Pink Floyd) and in the next 25 minutes, he taught me the lead for that song. I was astounded at how fast I picked it up. We also analyzed the song to look at the theory underlying the melody.
Within one session, my guitar teacher was able to completely turn my attitude around. It was brilliant. With the next lesson I learned another song I’ve always wanted to learn (From the Beginning – Emerson, Lake and Palmer). I am now feeling much better about my progress. That changed perspective is propelling me forward faster now.
I’m glad I’ve found this teacher. He is a rare breed.