How I Learned To Play The Guitar

How I Learned To Play The Guitar

My First Ever Guitar Lesson!

I was excited. My dear friend Andrew Little was already a decent guitarist and yet for some reason he was too shy to go to lessons with the new guitar teacher without a mate so he asked yours truly. I was 14 years old at the time and in my first year at high school. I loved music but I'd never learned any instrument except the recorder and in that I had no interest whatsoever. However, for some reason I thought I could enjoy learning the guitar. I rang my parents to ask if it was ok and they agreed. I thought to myself "How can I possibly learn guitar? I don't even own a guitar!" That particular problem was solved pretty quickly when another friend that was learning told me that I could use his guitar until I had my own.


Guitar Lesson Day....

The day of reckoning arrived. Andrew and I excused ourselves from our respective classes and headed across to the music room. We gingerly knocked on the practice room doors where our lessons were being held. After a brief moment we heard a voice from inside beckoning us to enter. We went in and met our teacher - Mr. Peter Thwaites. He was awesome right from the get go. He had long hair because every guitarist in the 80s had to have long hair, he had a quirky accent and always said "Shuzzbutt" or "Schweppes" and he knew how to teach. 


My First Guitar Chord...

D! I was awful. To this day I'm still amazed that Peter didn't rise up and cast me into the gloomy pit of non-guitarists. My fingers were terrible. They disobeyed my every command and it seemed the sense of rhythm that I thought I had decided to forsake me during that brief 17 minute guitar lesson of doom. To make matters worse there was some black dots on paper that might has well have been Egyptian hieroglyphics written by Amun Ra himself. I later came to understand that that was classical guitar sheet music! My friend Andrew was already far too good for that page and he was learning from the next book...."Oh great" I though to myself. I'm stuck in here sharing a lesson with the best guitar player in our year. Andrew new all the basic chords and could even do a little solo with a pentatonic scale whilst I could scarcely recognise my own stubs flailing about on the fretboard like a fish flops around on a beach when you've landed it.


But I had Fun...

Despite the trauma of that initial guitar tutorial I understood that something inside me had been triggered. How little did I know that the first guitar lesson with Peter Thwaites and Andrew Little would shape and influence my life from that day to this. 

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Final Words...

Learn guitar! Nowadays with the advent of the internet learning classical guitar or any style of guitar be it electric guitar or acoustic guitar is easier and more accessible than ever. After I finished at that school I couldn't find another teacher in the area that we moved to so I had to resort to teaching myself. If that scenario had taken place 15 years later I would have been able to use YouTube to learn or I could have found a teacher online. Do yourself a favour and check out my online guitar lessons and all of the free videos that I have up on YouTube. They're an incredible resource that enables you to learn anywhere that has a guitar and an internet connection with a device. 

Let your fingers fly!