Education & Engagement
2017 Guitar Weekend: 
June 23-25, 2017

Tentative Schedule:


Class Descriptions:

Guitar Refresher

This 30-minute session is for students who are new to guitar or are just getting back into it and could use a “refresher”. We will cover the basics: the names of the strings, tuning the guitar, to pick or not pick, a quick review on picking versus finger-style technique, and playing a major scale on each string. This will also serve as a nice warm-up for the weekend and give everyone an idea of the general skill level of the participants.

The Benefits of Classical Techniques

This session covers fundamental, ergonomic elements of classical guitar and how it can benefit right and left hand techniques, with a focus on relaxation.

Rock/Electric Guitar

We’ll dig into making chords, melodies, rhythms, and forms, combined with lyrics, work together in a rock guitar context. Using these musical building blocks that make a rock song, we’ll explore the way chords are built and how to expand your guitar vocabulary by using a variety of scales, chord tones and rhythmic figures. We’ll also get into organizing your practice time, including active listening, and how to develop your own rock style and sound.

Intro to Flamenco Guitar and Tango Rhythms

Learn Flamenco strumming techniques to play 4-beat rhythm patterns such as tangos and rumba, using common Spanish chord progressions.

Delta Blues Guitar

"Blues is the roots, and everything else is the fruits." In this class we will explore basic blues chordal formats, scale usages, 'turnarounds,' and picking techniques in order to learn, play, creatively improvise, and enjoy Delta Blues guitar accompaniment and lead playing, and in blues guitar in general. We will particularly focus on the music of the late great Robert Johnson, frequently referred to as the "King of the Delta Blues," whose songs have been recorded by a broad variety of acoustic and electric blues guitarists, from Muddy Waters to Eric Clapton, The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, and so many others. Students will also learn to play a (non-slide) guitar solo in the style of Robert Johnson in standard guitar tuning.

Juke ’n’ the Uke

Discover new ways to play familiar chords, strums, and picking, to spice up your playing. Play classic blues & jug band songs, learn the basics of improvising solos and more. Fun guaranteed, all levels welcome.

Introduction to Gypsy Jazz Guitar

This session will focus on the style of guitar known as Gypsy Jazz, which was the first style of jazz music originating from Europe. Django Reinhardt, the most renowned player of Gypsy Jazz, made it popular throughout the world with his ground-breaking techniques. We will focus on the basic techniques used to play this style, including “la pompe”, the distinct approach to playing rhythm, the chord shapes that are most used in Gypsy Jazz. We’ll also learn how to solo over chord changes using scales and arpeggios, and learn to play several classic Django tunes from the Hot Club era.

Introduction to Percussive Fingerstyle Techniques

Step outside of the box in this fun, hands on exploration. We will dive into the basic techniques of 'percussive' fingerstyle used by players like Andy McKee, Jon Gomm, Antoine Dufour and the late, great, Michael Hedges. The style reflects a new set of sounds and possibilities that can give you a unique 'spin' on your current playing. Whether you're a solo guitarist, singer-songwriter, or accompanying a vocalist, you're sure to find something new to add to your creative palette. Materials will be presented on different levels to accommodate varying skill sets. You'll leave with a 'Kali-sthenics' collection of exercises you can use to continue learning outside of class. Please bring a tuner! (Watch this video for a better understanding of 'Percussive Techniques')

Old Time Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar: Uncle Ray Kane Style

Raymond Kaleoalohapoina`oleohelemanu Kane of Nanakuli, Oahu was a master of ki ho`alu. Learn fundamental aspects of slack key guitar through his deceptively simple style, which influenced generations of players. We’ll tune to Taropatch & Double Slack Tunings and use a couple classic Hawaiian songs to examine the basics of this finger-picked guitar style.