GSI – Are there any resources out there that you think all guitar teachers need to know about?

Gregg – Well, Guitar Salon! There are, of course, the usual suspects, but there are some lesser known things as well. My list is not exhaustive, just what I’ve come across and found useful in my limited experience (I’ll forget some things, so I apologize).

  • Iceland Guitar School – TONS of stuff which is, and this is important, FREE AND LEGAL. We’ve used many of their things.
  • Bill is a high school guitar teacher and his stuff can be very useful in several environments.
  • There are some nice, affordable, downloadable arrangements here
  • Of course the Boije collection and rex database are amazing. Scans of hundreds and hundreds of nineteenth century public domain scores. Just Google the names and they’ll come up.
  • The ensemble music or Robert G. Mayuer. We’ve got a couple of videos up on YouTube. Great stuff.
  • I am putting the finishing touches on a sight reading method for guitar. Years ago it became apparent to me that there was a need for something that addressed this issue from the very first stages of learning to play and it is in use in my classroom and should be ready for publication within the year.
  • The Austin Classical Guitar Society has some good things online for classrooms focused on guitar orchestra. It is not free, however, but well worth checking out.
  • Our YouTube page (Servite Guitar). There are performances of many ensemble works of varying difficulty. You can get a feel for something to see if you want it, or show students the finished product when they begin. We add performances every year and will have our first solos up soon.

GSI – Anything else you’d like to add about the importance of guitar education?

Gregg – Formal guitar education is the great iceberg of education. Most can see the very top of it and think it is nice. There is so much more potential for formal instruction that supports lifelong student learning. This, quite literally, benefits all involved, and many financially including the makers of electric guitars, recording equipment, on and on. I’ve got students who would not have learned to play otherwise but when given a solid foundation were able to participate in popular styles and have gone on to purchase thousands of dollars in equipment and instruments. They continue to do so into adulthood. There is truly something, no actually a lot, in formal guitar education for all involved with the instrument whatever the style.

To put things another way; guitar class is a class. It seems that sometimes the second word is lost. Why do we not expect from guitar education what we expect from math, science, football, theater, etc.? Surely we care about our students as much as they do, don’t we?

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