Guitar Classes

Play by Ear - Paper Free!

Cathy Fink
Saturday, March 30
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM
$40

What key do I sing in? How do I know what chord to play? Where are the notes to this song? You will be amazed at how easy it is to take your eyes off the page and start training your ear to play what you want. You CAN do it. You were BORN with ear training, and Cathy can show you how to make it work for you! For intermediate level players. Students should know at least four chords in the keys of C, D, G, and A. Two-time GRAMMY® winner Cathy Fink teaches banjo online at truefire.com (with over 10,000 students served!) as well as at homespuntapes.com.

Beginning Guitar 2

Jonathan Shue
Five Mondays, March 25, April 1, 8, 15, 22
7:45 PM - 8:45 PM
5 weeks, $125

Take the next steps in your guitar playing by reviewing the basics then quickly moving on to new chords and learning the scales upon which they're built. Use these scales to start playing riffs and licks as you learn popular songs from the 50's, 60's, and 70's that you can easily sing along to as you play! Plenty of handouts provided. Please bring a working guitar (rentals available through Dusty Strings), tuner, music stand, and recording device. Jonathan Shue is the Education Director for Dusty Strings, a multi-instrumentalist and singer, and lover of all things guitar.

Intermediate Fingerstyle Guitar

Barry Pollack
Five Tuesdays, March 19, 26, April 2, 9, 16
6:30 PM - 7:30 PM
5 weeks, $125

Learn more sophisticated fingerpicking patterns including bass runs, hammer-ons and pull-offs, as well as Latin rhythms. Further your arranging skills with more advanced melodies and chord progressions. For intermediate guitar players, or those who have taken Beginning Fingerstyle Guitar, who have some experience fingerpicking and can play barre chords. A bound copy of professionally engraved music in both staff and TAB notation is included with the class, as well as access to mp3 examples of class materials. Please bring a music stand if you have one.

Intermediate Guitar

Barry Pollack
Five Tuesdays, March 19, 26, April 2, 9, 16
7:45 PM - 8:45 PM
5 weeks, $125

Learn the styles and techniques of past masters of guitar (The Carter Family, Mississippi John Hurt, and Elizabeth Cotton), the icons of acoustic and electric guitar (The Beatles, Neil Young, Led Zeppelin, and others), as well as contemporary players. Develop more tricks for jamming and playing solo. Learn the system and technique of barre chords. Barre chords allow you to play chords any place on the guitar. Begin to understand the principles of chord construction. These ideas will allow you to expand your chord vocabulary without needing a chord dictionary or app. Your library of authentic licks and riffs, strumming and picking patterns, will continue to grow. The pre-requisites for this class are the facility to change between chords, and the ability to play an F chord. Barry is open to students’ requests to learn specific songs and styles. Clearly printed handouts and mp3 tracks will be available to help you learn. Please bring a music stand and tuner if you have them. Visit modernclassicsguitar.com for more about this ongoing class.

Master Class with Billy McLaughlin

Billy McLaughlin
Saturday, March 23
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
$50

If you’re a fan of Leo Kottke, Michael Hedges, or Alex DeGrassi, you don’t want to miss this special master class with one of their peers, Billy McLaughlin. Billy McLaughlin has been changing people’s idea of what an acoustic guitar can sound like since the 1980’s. He’s recognized as an innovative performer and composer who embraces the advantages of acoustic guitar amplification, unorthodox techniques, and altered tunings while celebrating a gift for melody. In this special master class at Dusty Strings, Billy explains and demonstrates the evolution of his approach to acoustic guitar and how he achieves his sound. In the process, he teaches students how to do this as well. Students have raved that Billy’s teaching has "expanded [their] guitar and musical world forever." Billy also discusses how he re-learned to play guitar left-handed after being diagnosed with a devastating neurological condition called focal dystonia, the subject of which is at the center of the documentary film Changing Keys: Billy McLaughlin and the Mysteries of Dystonia. An international touring artist and Billboard Top Ten charter, Billy is someone that any guitarist, whether beginner or advanced, should get to know. Bring your guitar or just bring yourself – you’ll walk away with a new perspective on acoustic guitar and all that it can do!

The Art of Fingerstyle Guitar

Barry Pollack
Saturday, March 23
1:30 PM - 3:30 PM
$50

The Art of Fingerstyle Guitar is a new monthly series designed to help you create your own arrangements. The essence of arranging a song for fingerstyle guitar is figuring out how to play the melody, chord progression, and rhythm at the same time. Adding an independent bass line and characteristic riffs can make it really stand out! Each month, this class presents several easy to gig-ready arrangements of a song picked from the folk, rock, pop, jazz, Latin, world, or blues genres. In addition, you’ll learn how the arrangement is built and different solutions for specific phrases. You’ll leave with a complete arrangement to practice or perform! All music is presented in both TAB and staff notation with available mp3 practice tracks. With each class you’ll have the opportunity to use your smartphone or tablet to take video of demonstrations.

The Blues & Jazz Spectrum: Flatpicking the Blues 1

Eric Madis
Saturday, April 20
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
$40

Learn the Southwestern chordal and improvisational style of blues popularized by Blind Lemon Jefferson and Lonnie Johnson which paved the way for modern urban blues, jazz and rock guitar. A classic shuffle in E will be taught, along with chords and improvisation techniques based on 5,6 and 10 note blues scales. For intermediate guitarists. Instructor is a working musician, recording artist and has taught guitar throughout the US and Canada since 1976.

The Blues & Jazz Spectrum: Swinging the Blues 1

Eric Madis
Saturday, April 20
1:30 PM - 3:30 PM
$40

Learn the swing “jump” blues style of Louis Jordan and Count Basie, with its jazzy chord voicings and improvisation. Class I will teach jazz/blues chords and licks based on 5, 6 and 10 note blues scales, as well as how create melodies by modifying licks to fit chord changes of the song. For intermediate guitarists. Instructor is a working musician, recording artist and has taught guitar throughout the US and Canada since 1976.

Essential Skills for Beginning Guitar

Barry Pollack
Five Tuesdays, April 23, 30, May 7, 14, 21
6:30 PM - 7:30 PM
5 weeks, $125

If you've never played guitar before, already know a few chords, or used to play years ago and want to get started again, this class is for you! Barry explains the basic concepts of music and how they work on the guitar. You'll build the foundation for solid guitar skills and best practices; learn the basics of strumming and picking patterns used by folk, pop, rock, blues and bluegrass guitarists and a collection of riffs, licks, and tricks to spice up your playing; and gain insights into how to listen, learn, and practice so you can continue to enjoy playing for years to come. Plus, you can begin to play lead or solo guitar! Handouts and mp3 practice tracks provided. For more information, visit modernclassicsguitar.com.

Intermediate Guitar

Barry Pollack
Five Tuesdays, April 23, 30, May 7, 14, 21
7:45 PM - 8:45 PM
5 weeks, $125

Learn the styles and techniques of past masters of guitar (The Carter Family, Mississippi John Hurt, and Elizabeth Cotton), the icons of acoustic and electric guitar (The Beatles, Neil Young, Led Zeppelin, and others), as well as contemporary players. Develop more tricks for jamming and playing solo. Learn the system and technique of barre chords. Barre chords allow you to play chords any place on the guitar. Begin to understand the principles of chord construction. These ideas will allow you to expand your chord vocabulary without needing a chord dictionary or app. Your library of authentic licks and riffs, strumming and picking patterns, will continue to grow. The pre-requisites for this class are the facility to change between chords, and the ability to play an F chord. Barry is open to students’ requests to learn specific songs and styles. Clearly printed handouts and mp3 tracks will be available to help you learn. Please bring a music stand and tuner if you have them. Visit modernclassicsguitar.com for more about this ongoing class.

The Art of Fingerstyle Guitar

Barry Pollack
Saturday, April 27
1:30 PM - 3:30 PM
$50

The Art of Fingerstyle Guitar is a new monthly series designed to help you create your own arrangements. The essence of arranging a song for fingerstyle guitar is figuring out how to play the melody, chord progression, and rhythm at the same time. Adding an independent bass line and characteristic riffs can make it really stand out! Each month, this class presents several easy to gig-ready arrangements of a song picked from the folk, rock, pop, jazz, Latin, world, or blues genres. In addition, you’ll learn how the arrangement is built and different solutions for specific phrases. You’ll leave with a complete arrangement to practice or perform! All music is presented in both TAB and staff notation with available mp3 practice tracks. With each class you’ll have the opportunity to use your smartphone or tablet to take video of demonstrations.