#36377  by jenkins
 Sat Feb 02, 2008 6:54 am
Pete B. wrote:Bobby took lessons from Jerry, right?
This is not true. THis is kind of a dead tour urban myth, i heard this for years but if you read the Bob Weir interview from 1981 you will find out its not true.

When he met Jerry in the back of the music store he was ready to play in a working band.
He worked in the music store with jerry teaching guitar to his own students.

Bobby says the only lessons he ever took were from reverand gary davis in 1971.

So while im sure he did pick some thing up form playing with jerry he never took guitar lessons from him.
 #44500  by marena
 Fri May 30, 2008 9:53 pm
Hi friends, I am a guitar lesson student. A number of guitar lesson sites have MP3 files of the lesson being produced. I am unable to open (download) them. I get to the link and it says that it is done but I don't get a download. Why do download of MP3 not work when I want to download from a guitar lesson site? Please help with real experience. Thank you in advance.

 #44502  by Jon S.
 Sat May 31, 2008 4:57 am
Chuckles wrote:Kinda depends on your definition of lessons...

Although it appears the the OP was thinking of formal, sit-down, 1/2 or 1 hr., paid lessons, in fact, defined broadly, lessons occur whenever someone schools someone else. And no matter who we are, we've all had that as none of us learned to play alone on a desert island. Or we can teach ourselves from lessons in books and tabs. Frank Zappa is an example of someone who was self-taught, in that mode, in many respects (and I'm not talking only or even primarily musically in Frank's case - he was incredibly self-educated in many areas).

Myself, although I've returned for formal lessons over the years, I, too, lack the time and inclination for continuing them over the long haul. However, I did spend a week every summer from 1999-2002 at the National Guitar Workshop. Those experiences were well worth the time and money.

The Hot Country Licks class I took in Nashville in '01 was probably the best music investment I've ever made. When I learned how to chicken pick, emulate pedal steel licks, and sound country or Western swingish, it seriously expanded my playing.

I sometimes host jam parties at my place which include a session where for part of the time we just sit in a circle and share new ideas and riffs. Those are lessons, too. I've learned incredibly practical riffing tips that way.

An example. In a simple I-IV-V blues, on the opening I, one time, try playing any riff in the basic I pentatonic minor, then shift the exact notes you just played up a half step, play 'em again (i.e., in the I# pentatonic major), then return to the I before moving to the 1st IV. Try it, see what you think of it. These types of tips are what my music instructor at the NGW, Matt Smith, calls, "Incredibly simple techniques that sound great."

No, it's not deep theory but there's a time and place for everything.
 #44504  by Larree
 Sat May 31, 2008 7:02 am
dpmphoto wrote:I thought it might be interesting to see how many of the great took guitar lessons, my guess is not very many,what do you think???
I think all the legends took lessons. All the greats watched and listened to the players who turned them on. One must appreciate and respect the legends to become a legend. All of the greats talk about listening and sharing licks. No one sat in a closet by themselves and got "that good." I consider every encounter with music to be a lesson.

 #44530  by weirimpressed
 Sun Jun 01, 2008 11:56 am
great way to look at it man, i would have never had a clue what I was getting into if my buddy hadnt sat me down and showed me how much I didnt know!
 #106621  by ndrewoods
 Fri Dec 16, 2011 12:45 am
marena wrote:Hi friends, I am a guitar lesson student. A number of guitar lesson sites have MP3 files of the lesson being produced. I am unable to open (download) them. I get to the link and it says that it is done but I don't get a download. Why do download of MP3 not work when I want to download from a guitar music lesson site? Please help with real experience. Thank you in advance.
Just saw this thread when browsing around. Marena, maybe it is just an ads. Get lessons with an actual person. In that way, you save time from doing this. It will cost you but that's fine. But back on the topic, Guitar Legend Steve Howe. He is one of the few guitar legends I know that really is schooled. And he is just awesome.
Last edited by ndrewoods on Sun Dec 18, 2011 7:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
 #106638  by tcsned
 Fri Dec 16, 2011 8:44 am
Brian Setzer took formal lessons too. One thing to take into consideration is that the availability of guitar teachers in the late 50s/early 60s was probably pretty spotty. I'd guess a lot of these guys didn't have the option.
 #106645  by Pete B.
 Fri Dec 16, 2011 10:22 am
I was giving a "Lesson" to a "learned by ear" guy last week, and went through the basics of Major, Minor, 7th, Diminished, and Augmented chords.
The guys looks at me and says... "I don't play anything with Augmented chords".
I say... "Hey Man the random distribution of reality dictates that it's more likely that you've played Augmented chords, and just didn't know it".
He didn't take that well.
I thought it was super funny! :lol:
Last edited by Pete B. on Sat Dec 24, 2011 10:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
 #106670  by paulinnc
 Fri Dec 16, 2011 4:27 pm
My very first guitar teacher used to give lessons to big name musicians once in awhile. My teacher said it was more about helping them get out of a rut with their playing or give them a different spin on things. I can't remember the teacher's name, Tim something, he runs the guitar workshop in Charlotte. Anyway Tim would tell me stories about giving lessons to players as they come through town, the players would get is number from a friend or something and he would get random calls now and then from a tour manager about meeting someone to go over some material etc. Tim said those calls didn't happen that often, he also said the musicians liked working with someone without interruptions. I'm trying to think of who he had consulted, I think I remember him saying Paul Simon was someone had worked with a few times here and there over the years.


 #106672  by mttourpro
 Fri Dec 16, 2011 4:55 pm
deadhippie wrote:joe satriani and kirk hammet of metallica both took lessons from Steve Vai... together even.
I read that and thought it was the other way around....looked up Vai on wiki and saw

Vai began playing guitar in 1973, at the age of 13.[2] In 1974, he took guitar lessons from guitarist Joe Satriani and played in numerous local bands, one of which was called "The Steve Vais".

as for this below----that's exactly ( I think) how lessons helped me the most when I began playing as I am a lazy SOB.

"If I was paying $50 for a lesson coming up on Monday, I would feel pressure to practice and be ready for it in order to get a reasonable amount out of it, so that I wouldn't feel like I had wasted my money."

FWIW, I believe lots of bad-ass players had lessons and/or went to a Music school of some sort at some point.

As for Zappa, while he didn't take formal guitar lessons he was in his high school band and did acknowledge 2 of his teachers on Freak Out! He also had other major influences like Don Van Vliet aka Capt Beefheart, etc.

again, from wiki


Zappa joined his first band at Mission Bay High School in San Diego. He was the band's drummer.

and this

Zappa's interest in composing and arranging proliferated in his last high-school years. By his final year, he was writing, arranging and conducting avant-garde performance pieces for the school orchestra.[23] He graduated from Antelope Valley High School in 1958, and later acknowledged two of his music teachers on the sleeve of the 1966 album Freak Out![24] Due to his family's frequent moves, Zappa attended at least six different high schools, and as a student he was often bored and given to distracting the rest of the class with juvenile antics.[25] He left community college after one semester, and maintained thereafter a disdain for formal education, taking his children out of school at age 15 and refusing to pay for their college.

Personally, I took lessons as a kid from an old lady, then as a teen with a bad-ass classical guy (mostly serious classical, some ELP, Kansas, etc) before going to one year of jazz conservatory at Duquesne and studying with Dave Budway (check him out if you want to hear the best musician I've ever known) for a semester.....one thing (for me anyhow) was that when I took classical lessons and even in college (given the heavy emphasis on theory), the emphasis playing-wise was about "reading music" and interpreting it, technique, etc.

When I first joined rock and GD-based bands and started playing out, I realized my ear sucked and that I was using my eyes more than my ears---I've worked for 20 years to reverse that and am still working on it. I used to be ale to sight-read classical sonatas and the like...I'm not so sure it wouldn't be easier to figure em out by ear now.

All in all---can't lose taking a few lessons, especially from someone who plays/thinks differently than you already do.
 #106683  by Mr.Burns
 Fri Dec 16, 2011 8:18 pm
Many valid opinions on a topic like this, but it seems like true greats possess something beyond chops or knowledge that allows their playing to speak directly to the parts of us that recognize their greatness. It seems like everyone knows or has heard of some obscure technical wizard or genius of theory, but why are these mysterious greats obscure? Just having incredible chops or a complete understanding of music can only take you so far. Occasionally you find a person who has that extra something in spades, but little natural talent or internal knowledge from which the mystery ingredient can spring. In this case whats interesting is watching the player learn about theory and develop chops, then in turn these things fill in the gaps.
Lessons, no lessons... either way, I think you get out what you put in. Lessons can speed up the process, but i think someone already said that.
Derek Trucks got some instruction from his father and uncle at the age of nine, then much later studied some exotic music... not really "lessons"... but he is AMAZING...go figure


 #106995  by jjbankhead
 Sat Dec 24, 2011 8:59 am
strumminsix wrote:
jjbankhead wrote:i also read that Bob was inducted into the dead by having taken lessons from Jerry @ the music store the warlocks was formed in. I believe someone else already stated this but i figured i wold just back it up
Where did you read this?

It's odd because Bobby and Jerry started Mother McCree's (not the Dead) and Bobby was playing washtub bass (Jerry was accomplished & teaching mostly banjo but also guitar).
Hey strummin' it's only been a few years since i wrote this- and i read my response and realized i typoed... :-)

I have only read a few "Dead" books, the first was Rock's book i believe it is titled "living with the dead" and then i read the Jerry Bio. I believe where i got the notion of Bob taking lessons from Jerry is from the Jerry Bio. I believe it was the "american Life" one. It's been several years now since i read it, but i remeber something being said about Jerry, Bob, Pig and Bill meeting by way of the music store and Bob taking guitar lessons at said store.... But i may well have mis-remembered what i read. It happens.
 #106997  by Pete B.
 Sat Dec 24, 2011 10:23 am
Yeah, one of the things I recall reading was that, Bobby was about to be fired from the band for sucking on guitar, and Jerry had to literally show him how he (Jerry) wanted him (Bobby) to pick the strings so that the "attack" would be more to Jerrys liking.
Beyond that, there is a TV show interview (can't remeber which) where Jerry is asked who Bobby plays most like, and Jerry says (iirc), "Me... I've showed him everything he knows".
 #106999  by jahozer
 Sat Dec 24, 2011 11:10 am
Another commonality with good musicians is they grew up in a musical household, where their parents played in some capacity. So that is fairly like lessons.
I am a firm believer in lessons and formal study.