Guitar Lessons

One I thing I can say about past boyfriends is that they’ve been easily coerced into buying me exactly what I want for Christmas. And though Ryan was a complete clown who couldn’t get over the fact that I owned real estate before he did, he was easily persuaded to buy me a guitar for Christmas 2005.

And he also had the good sense to let me decide which one I wanted. I landed on a Takamine GS-330S, which I love.

My guitar

It sat idle for a good 10 months, until I finally got some free time to sign up for lessons in October. Since then I’ve been taking group lessons at the Old Town School of Folk Music on Armitage.

Lessons there are a real kick. They have what they call the “Core Guitar Program,” which is a series of 8-week classes, starting with Guitar I, going through Guitar IV, with a repetoire class for each level in between.

So I started with Guitar I in October, along with 13 other spry guitar neophytes.

The first night of class was a bit overwhelming. The school is in a 1920’s building with a bandroom-like “auditorium”, where all the levels of classes meet together. They tune up all the newbies’ guitars, then send each class off to its respective room. You spend the first hour and a half with your class, then come back together with everyone for the last half hour, which they call “second half”. That’s when the six or so teachers get up in front and lead a sing-along, with everyone playing guitar in unison. We play everying from “Skip to my Lou” to Pink Floyd.

They also encourage people to bring six-packs and Cheetos to class. Then go to the bar afterwards.

My first teacher was Michael, a 50-something guy who spent the vast majority of his life as a street performer. You could imagine him playing Oliver as a child (yes, I mean from the Dickens musical).

My second teacher was Dan, an early 30’s jolly rocker, who talked more than he played. What a character!

I took Guitar I and Guitar I Rep on a weeknight from 8-10, and not only did I have to miss a few classes because I was out of town, but by 10 I was darn near asleep. So this round I decided on Sunday from noon-2.

Now I only have four people in my class, and my teacher is Bob:


I have a crush on him. I want to be just like him. I want to play in his band.

He has a website, and if you click on “Old Town School” on the left, you can hear what we’re playing — look for Guitar 2 on Sunday.

It’s the most beautiful day of the year here — 60 degrees! So I shopped my way home. Since then I’ve been trying to play some of the songs we got today, but my fingers are raw.

Me playing guitar


1 Response so far »

  1. 1

    Jeff Garner said,

    That’s a great guitar!

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