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How to Find a Great Guitar Teacher

If you decide you would like to learn guitar, a private teacher can be a great idea. Although it’s entirely possible to teach yourself how to play guitar, a teacher is a great idea for several reasons. A good teacher can start you off in the right direction by showing you proper techniques up front so you don’t have to “un-learn” mistakes and bad habits that are hampering your technique. Teaching also allows for a lot of questions and give-and-take which can help speed up your learning. Although there are many other great reasons for finding a teacher, this article is going to focus on what to look for in a good teacher.

guitar teacher

Guitar teacher
Rancho Bernardo guitar lessons 619-306-3664


If you are serious, you will look for someone with decent qualifications and experience. Is your potential teacher a professional musician? Have they themselves had formal training? How many years of experience have they had, in both performance and training? Keep in mind that simply because someone is a competent musician, this doesn’t automatically mean he or she would make a good teacher. On the other hand, someone without a lot of stage time can be a very good teacher if he or she can demonstrate ability to you.


You also should look for someone whose ability and style matches the genre you most want to learn. If, for example, you want to learn electric blues or metal, you may not want to use a guitar teacher who specializes in flamenco. When you are starting out, you will want to learn the basics, so a teacher who plays a different style of music isn’t necessarily a bad idea. The spectrum is pretty broad when it comes to beginners. But, as you progress you will want to work with someone who is “more your style.” Talk to several teachers, and don’t settle on the first one.

Teaching & Communication Style

What else should you look for? In addition to finding someone who can actually teach you, you need to find a teacher who is patient and able to communicate often complex musical concepts to someone who is just starting in on the basics. This often means tackling a subject from different angles to get the student to understand a concept. Different teaching methods work for different students. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to learning, especially in the arts. Once again, patience and strong communication skills are key. A teacher should never talk down to a student, but praise him when he accomplishes a goal and encourage the student to continue. A good teacher will be able to interact respectfully with the student. If a teacher doesn’t have an answer to a student’s question, he should be ready and able to get an answer within a reasonable amount of time. The teacher doesn’t have to be a guitar god, but should be able to aptly demonstrate what it is he wants the student to learn, by demonstrating it and then breaking it down for the student to follow.

Getting Along

While a teacher and a student don’t have to be best friends, it is best if they are simpatico. That simply means they understand each other, and they realize they are working towards a common goal. You should feel at ease talking to your instructor about anything music-related. He or she should be able to answer any questions you have and work with you to achieve your goals.

It’s important to remember that you are paying your teacher for his or her services. In other words, your teacher works for you. Just as you would let an employee go if they weren’t a good match for the job or the company, so you should feel all right with discussing a teacher’s performance, or to replace the teacher altogether if it just doesn’t work out. Move on to another one until you find the right match.

Phone Glenn Sutton at: 619-306-3664.

Services include:

  • Acoustic Guitar Lessons
  • Electric Guitar Lessons
  • Bass Guitar Instruction
  • Classical Guitar
  • Spanish Guitar
  • Learning to Write Music
  • Advanced Improv Techniques
  • Performance Techniques
  • TABS or sheet music



  • Rock
  • Classic
  • Folk
  • Jazz
  • Improv
  • Blues
  • R&B/funk
  • Metal


  • Rancho Bernardo
  • San Diego
  • Poway
  • Rancho Penasquitos
  • Scripps Ranch
  • 4S Ranch
  • Sabre Springs