We’ve had an amazing guitar seminar at the end of September 2016!
It was three full days of action-packed non-stop learning about the instrument, theory, ourselves, and just how to become better at playing the guitar!
The seminar took place in Mayfair & the City of London and my students made incredible progress during the seminar!
A big thanks to all students who participated and I look forward to hosting the next guitar seminar soon!
Here’s a breakdown of the 2016 guitar seminar in a nutshell:
Friday evening session (23rd September 2016):
SESSION 1: Analysing the greatest guitar players of the last 100 years!
We listened and dissected some of the greatest guitar playing of the 21st Century!
We talked about the playing styles of Johnny Fourie, Yngwie Malmsteen, Clapton, Malmsteen, Vai, Shawn Lane, John McLaughlin, Django Reinhardt, John Williams, Jim Hall, Pat Martino amongst others and the way they build their musical phrases!
It was an explosive session of great analysis that helped my students in their musical journey going forward!
Sometimes listening to the greatest throughout the ages can give ideas that one would not usually think of! A great session all in all!
SESSION 2: All about cadences – exploring the universe of the cadences
My students then discovered the all-important cadences, how they work and how to recognise the different types…
We stuck largely to the big four – perfect, imperfect, plagal and deceptive, but towards the end of the session, I did demonstrate some pretty way-out jazz cadences! (Hair-raising ones!)
Saturday the 23rd of October
Session 1: Chord mastery
We discovered how to build our own chords ala Pat Martino style using all the possible string groups of 3 and then all the possible string groups of 4.
This session was a real eye-opener as we discovered the mathematics behind the major, minor, diminished and augmented triads!
We also played seventh chords in harmony as a group and it was a LOT of fun!
A wonderful session that helped all my students seriously increase their chord and fretboard knowledge!
Session 2: Band workshop
Here everybody played along with a simple chord progression and tried to make music as a group!
As you may know, us guitarists generally like to shine, so it took some doing to get everybody to focus on the quality of the music of the entire group.
Listening is a skill that all musicians must master.
It’s a difficult skill as it requires one to focus on the success of the team rather than the individual… that’s exactly why these workshops are so powerful!
Session 3: Improvisation
Next up, we all discovered the power of using common notes, voice leading and small movements to help create an intro to a solo.
We discovered that by not doing much, we can actually do a lot!
Students also discovered that slowing down the initial part of a solo is (usually) a great idea. Of course, after this initial part, students can then build towards a climax using a musical sequence and a bend!
The world is most certainly your oyster when it comes to soloing but as we discovered, great principles of melody and harmony help greatly to create a mind-blowing solo!
A marvellous session where everyone had a chance to improvise and show off their chops!
Sunday the 25th of September – the final day of the seminar
Yes, we all had a marvellous time and everybody learned tons! It was a big success and this seminar will definitely have a big IMPACT on the musical future of my students.
SESSION 1: Questions and answers
This was a fun and interactive session.
I asked various questions to test the proficiency of my students and to help them learn.
Questions such as: “Play all the F#s on the guitar neck” or “Play an E Major second inversion chord on String Group 246”.
I made sure that everyone’s questions were suitable to their current musical level.
The greatest element here was that everyone learned from each other and the group session allowed my students to discover gaps in their playing to work on in months to come.
A brilliant afternoon!
SESSION 2: Improvisation and guitar masterclass – a long session!
Here I helped my students conquer elements of guitar playing such as how to bend properly or do a vibrato.
The whole group at times helped each other to become more proficient at the instrument! It was really inspiring to see the level of comradeship within the entire group!
We then re-visited the subject of guitar improvisation.
I was surprised at just how much more musical my students sounded in this session to the previous.
Critical thinking is certainly the most important part of guitar playing and I am glad that my students took more time to think about the quality and path of their solos!
Once again, a BIG THANK YOU to all who participated in this wonderful guitar seminar!Guitar masterclass, Guitar seminar