These video clips were recorded at Walnut Creek’s Dean Lesher Theatre, which seats 800. Rex’s Guitar Studio students are jamming on classic rock hits along with San Francisco Bay Area musicians and teachers. Students are able to apply all their lesson materials of reading and soloing along with celeb Bay Area musicians that have performed with Santana, Tower Of Power, Michael Jackson and many other well-known recording artists.
Walnut Creek CA Guitar Students – Create a Daily Practice Plan
Why have a daily practice plan? Now that I have been playing guitar since I was 8 years old and now teach ages 5 and up on guitar in Bay Area. A common question is, “How much time do I need to practice the guitar lessons daily?”
That is an excellent question. If you are under 10, I say 30 minutes a day 5 days per week. If you are older than 10, then 60 minutes a day 6 days a week – if you are serious about your playing, then two hours a day.
Now, let’s take a look at a possible daily practice program lasting an hour and a half.
Objective– To be able to play rock and roll guitar in the styles of Chuck Berry, Eddie Van Halen, Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughn, George Benson, Chet Atkins, Andreas Segovia and etc.
It’s important to have a little light at the end of the tunnel, so I’ve included an estimated period of time to achieve your objective. This is “Duration of project.” The times I’m using here are merely examples and every guitar player will need to adjust these according to individual strengths and weaknesses.
Finally, let’s discuss the sort of things you would practice under each heading and how long to spend on each item. Again, this will vary between guitar players and is only a guide.
An example of my assignment to guitar students in Walnut Creek, CA studying rhythm guitar would be playing through a 12 bar blues with a metronome or drum machine. You could vary the tempo and the key every day or so. Any rhythm part will do. The emphasis here is on developing solid time and physical control in all keys and at various tempos. The assignment could be 10 minutes a day. This may not sound long enough, but try playing rock and roll rhythm guitar for 10 minutes- nonstop, with 100 % concentration.
Chord Vocabulary– This step of the game plan should be combined with learning new tunes. It’s vital that you try and combine as many different aspects of developing you’re playing as possible under each of the following categories. The following is an suggested example of weekly practice program:
- Rhythm Guitar ( 10 minutes )
- Chord Vocabulary ( 15 minutes )
- Playing Techniques String Bending ( 10 minutes )
- Playing Techniques Vibrato ( 10 minutes )
- Vocabulary Intros ( 15 minutes )
- Vocabulary Endings ( 10 minutes )
- Vocabulary Licks ( 15 minutes )
- Vocabulary Solos ( 15 minutes )
Check out these website for more info & perspective:
Guitar & Banjo Lessons
Danville – Walnut Creek CA
East Bay Guitar Lessons Help to Develop Better Brains & People – not just rock ego-maniac stars!
I’ve been studying and teaching music for over 40 years. Today, I teach guitar and banjo lessons throughout the East Bay in communities like Danville, San Ramon, Concord, Walnut Creek – the whole East Bay.
I teach guitar students much more than simply how to strum a few chords on a guitar. Reading music, variations on a theme, scales, composition, orchestration, road skills, playing with ensembles, soloing… it’s a long list! The more we learn about the brain, the more we discover about how music lessons and education help brains & people development in wonderful ways.
- The Brain – Research has shown that both listening to music and playing a musical instrument stimulate your brain and can increase your memory. Research suggests that regularly playing an instrument changes the shape and power of the brain and may be used in therapy to improve cognitive skills. Hearing it and especially playing it. Music affects mood, creativity and a wide range of synaptic activity in the brain – many areas of your brain start firing and communicating with other parts of your entire nervous system.
- Cognitive Development – Children exposed to a multi-year program of music tuition involving training in increasingly complex rhythmic, tonal, and practical skills display superior cognitive performance in reading skills compared with their non-musically trained peers.
- Neurological multi-tasking – Moving and playing at the same time is challenging. Whether you are in a marching band or creating choreography for your rock band – playing and moving with the music develops body/mind coordination.
- Discipline & Time Management – Practice, practice, practice = discipline development. When we practice with our band mates, team discipline enters the equation. Developing discipline is key to developing personal integrity.
- Teamwork – From the hassles to the high-fives. Learning how to collaborate and work as a team is just good human development!
- Camaraderie & Sacrifice – Good friends are just one of life’s “must have” experiences. Sharing dreams, disappoints and accomplishments help to extend emotional range and maturity. Putting self aside for the greater good of the band is invaluable for personal development.
- Resilience, Flexibility, Creative Problem Solving, Manners, Respect, Trust, Self-Expression, Social Skills, Listening Skills – A few of the character traits that music students work with on a daily basis.
- Music Broadens Horizons – Musicians get passionate about all things music – instruments, composers, poetry, history… music touches every part of life through time, thus it can be a doorway into almost any area of human experience and development. Studies have shown that students who play instruments or study the arts are often better in math and achieve higher grades in school than students who don’t.
Guitar & Banjo Lessons
Concord – Danville – San Ramon – Walnut Creek
Give the Gift of Music this Holiday Season in Danville & Walnut Creek
I love this time of year and always love giving gifts. I have wonderful student ts all ages 5 and up 0n electric and acoustic guitars as well as 4 string electric bass, 4 and 5-string banjo, mandolin and uke . I have all my students from Danville & Walnut Creek CA tell their Facebook friends to check out my guitar packages for Christmas gifts as low as $29.95 for half size guitar for a young student. I also have complete electric and acoustic guitar packages that includes amp, strap, picks and of course guitar starting at around $100.
I’m also giving away two free half hour private lessons and also half off first two months lessons. You purchase a month private lessons and the 2nd month is free of charge. Wow!! No one is giving this many gifts away. Why? Because I always like to help0 people with the gift of music. I also give a guitar method retail value of $100 for free and you receive a gift envelope with Guitar Confidence that says “A Gift For You”. So, you have the new student open first the large guitar method book and then watch their face grow a huge smile when they open gift envelope and see they have 10 one half hour private guitar lessons at their home for $150. Or you can receive 6 half hour private lessons for $75.
Today I’m giving a great jazz guitar solo arrangement of “White Christmas” It is performed as a solo with both chords and melody. All chord symbols and fingerings are available as well as tab and standard notation. So, in closing, enjoy this beautiful classic Christmas song
Download White Christmas Sheet Music
Guitar & Banjo Lessons
Danville – Walnut Creek CA
Learning to play a guitar like a pro is not Mission Impossible!
My friend, John Harper, who does the online marketing for The Harper Team Realtors in San Ramon CA, created this great promo for me using a sound track that I recorded with my RGS Ensemble.
Whether you live in Concord, Walnut Creek or Danville, or San Ramon – I can help you take your guitar playing to the next level. I provide guitar lessons for all ages and levels of skill.
Enjoy the promo – playing guitar like a pro is Mission Possible!!!
I notice the stores are already putting out the Holiday displays. Keep your eye on this site for upcoming gift specials.
Laying down lead tracks with Christian Musician Steve Kuban on his new album
Renowned guitarist Rex Bell plays a rock solo (a la Jimi Hendrix) on “For The Lord Is My Tower” (from Steve Kuban’s new album “I’m Calling Out To You” –Rex’s headphone mix only)
If you want to play like a pro, learn from a pro. Guitar lessons for beginners up to and including expert guitarist in Walnut Creek and Concord CA. In fact, anywhere in the East Bay. Let me help you take your guitar playing to the next level.
Guitar & Banjo Lessons
Walnut Creek – Concord CA
Walnut Creek, Orinda, Lafayette – Jazz Guitar Lessons
I have been teaching and playing guitar in East Bay since 1975. There are a lot of good guitar players in the area, but only a few great ones. In Walnut Creek, Orinda and Lafayette there are only a few good guitar instructors that have methods including soloing and reading music and music theory for all levels of beginners to advanced – and this is what you need to go from good to great, along with discipline and love.
Today I share with you a great jazz guitar composition by great guitarist Steve Erquiaga from Alameda California. Steve has performed, toured and recorded with such great artists as Joe Henderson, Bobby McFerrin, Les McCann and Sadao Watanabe.
In addition to conducting his own seminars in the U.S. and Europe, Steve is a staff member with the Jamey Aebersold Jazz Clinics that are week long clinics held all over the world. He is faculty member at San Jose University, San Jose , California, teaching Guitar ( jazz as well as other contemporary styles).
Here is a PDF file you can download entitled “EL NINO.” Today I give you the lead guitar part with Latin fill using great jazz lines and jazz chords along with syncopation. Once you have perfected part one lead guitar, then try part two rhythm part soon to be posted.
Guitar & Banjo Lessons
Walnut Creek, Orinda, Lafayette CA
Blues Guitar Lessons for Different Students
As a guitar instructor for students ranging from beginners to pros, I have to adapt the guitar lessons to each guitar student’s skill level and their dreams. Some guitar students want to be the next Eric Clapton or B.B. King. Others want to emulate Ottmar Liebert or Chet Atkins. The wonder of the guitar is that it can do it all.
Recently I was giving guitar lessons to two East Bay guitar students (1 in Livermore, the other in Walnut Creek CA) with different skill levels and different stylistic needs – both wanted to play the blues.
Beginner bass guitar player, Mike in Walnut Creek has been studying guitar with me for a year and really struggled with the 6-string guitar. After 6 months he switched to bass guitar. He figured two less strings on a 4-string Fender Precision Electric 4 string bass might be easier for him.
I have him working with my series of easy to play bass guitar grooves that are based on a 1 measure pattern known as a box pattern. This means a pattern played in one position ( 4 fret span ) and then used in 12 bar blues format. These will be known as Bass Patterns 1, 2 and 3 with standard notation as well as tab and even sound wav.
Mike is tired of just practicing & reading music. He’s champing at the bit to go jam. So I told him to just get down 12 bass patterns and then you will be ready once you learn how tom play in any key. This the first of 4 groups of lessons for beginner bassists that want to start jamming. Remember , less is more. Keep your patterns very simple.
- Bass Guitar Lesson Pattern 1 Music Sheet
- Bass Guitar Lesson Pattern 2 Music Sheet
- Bass Guitar Lesson Pattern 3 Music Sheet
Heads will turn when you use this finger pinching blues pattern a la Chet Atkins. Most guitarist when playing rhythm blues guitar patterns stick to the traditional patterns like from songs like “Kansas City” or “Johnny B Goode” by the great Chuck Berry. Don, an excellent guitar student in Livermore CA, has been playing serious guitar for over 25 years. He said he was in a typical mental block when jamming at local clubs in Contra Costa County and Solano County.
He found himself always resorts to same rhythm guitar patterns. This blues guitar pattern What I taught Don and what I’m teaching you today incorporates your right hand pinching strings 6,4 and 3 using a pick or straight all fingers. I have made it easy for all levels with correct fingerings and practice slowly in 2 bar phrases. Once you have mastered this every beat pattern, use it along with traditional rhythm blues patterns and you will receive a lot of positive comments from other musicians. I have included an mp3 with traditional piano because it is easier to hear the clear groove.
Questions & inquiries always appreciated.
Guitar & Banjo Lessons
Livermore & Walnut Creek CA
A-Minor Chord Variation for Guitar
Working with some of my guitar students in Concord and Walnut Creek CA recently, I took the time to show them some A-minor chord variations for guitar.
One of the first chords you typically learn when taking guitar lessons is the open A-minor chord. To add some enhancement and color to songs using the A-minor chord, try the following:
On your first down strum (Beat 1 of 4 beats per measure) remove your left hand 3rd finger. Now string 3 has no finger. This changes chord name to A-minor 7th. Cool sound but now brace yourself.
For second down strum on your guitar slide your left hand Am7 (A minor 7th) formation up two frets known as a whole step. This creates a lush and very rich but dissonant sound known as a Bm7/A. When you see a slash after chord name, the letter name to the right of slash indicates the bass note thus the open 5th string is known as the “A”.
Then on final strums on beats 3 and 4 of this simple one measure pattern you must do following: Put your left hand 2nd finger on fret 5 string 4 and your left hand 3rd finger on fret 5 string 3 and with strumming hand strum downwards from 5th string. This will give your guitar a rich sound with the open strings. This guitar chord is known as an A-minor 9th.
You can apply this to any song where you have 4 strums for A-minor. An example would be Bob Dylan’s “Knocking On Heavens Door”. The song starts by two down strums for G and for D and then goes to 4 strums for A-minor. Then it does two down strums again for G and D and finishes with 4 strums on C. That’s the complete song.
Try playing it on your guitar with the A-minor chord formations and I think you’ll love the sound by adding the variation to the song.
Want a free guitar lesson on this and other cool chord variations, email me and let’s get started (new guitar or banjo students only).
Guitar & Banjo Lessons
Walnut Creek – Concord, CA
Guitar Strumming Technique
Today, I gave a free one hour introductory Guitar Strumming Technique class in Walnut Creek. I started out demonstrating a right handed funk chicken picking technique. The best example of this is the “Theme From Shaft” sound track which was recorded with my 40 piece electric guitar rock ensemble that included numerous students of mine in Bay Area as well as some professional musicians I brought in for the recording session.
Before you start working on the pattern, try using a real cry baby wah wah pedal from Jim Dunlop guitars in Benicia California, and then take your left hand and cover all 6 strings and strum a 16th note rhythm pattern which you count as “1–ee-and-ah, 2-ee-and-ah, 3–ee-and-ah and 4-ee-and-ah (each syllable representing a sixteenth note). Now you accent with your right hand the first 16th note of each beat at a slow tempo of 50 b.p.m. working up to 120 b.p.m. Then, practice displacing the accent only on beat 3 to 2nd 16th note. On beats 1,2 and 4 keep it normal accenting first 16th note of each beat.
Once you have this down you apply the wah-wah effect with your right foot on the wah wah pedal. Start with the pedal fully open and gradually push down to the floor to full closed position on beat 4. When you get the hang of it then try making the foot pedal be fully down on beats 2 and 4.
A good example of this is demonstrated on my recording of Shaft with my 40 piece guitar ensemble.