Guitar Shredding, Composition and Production

Guitar Shredding, Composition and Production

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Class Description


Basic class outline, adjusted as needed for student interest and proficiency:


1. Guitar components, basic care, and tuning
2. Learn the names of the notes on the first three frets and open strings
3. Learn how to read musical notation for these notes
4. Notation basics-note lengths, rests, key signatures
5. Learn open chords: C, A, G, E, D
6. Note theory-we begin memorization of the entire fretboard up to the 12th fret, and examine patterns we can use to assist this process, such as octaves
7. Practice chromatic scale finger exercise and strumming patterns
8. Learn basic, 4 open-chord songs chosen by the student
9. Learn scales: Pentatonic, Major, Minor
10. Basic music theory, I, ii, iii, IV, V, vi, vii
11. Barre chords-E shape and A shape
12. Relative major and minors
13. How to play by ear and solo along to any chords, major or minor, through fretboard and scale memorization
14. Advanced techniques: bending, hammer on-off, vibrato, fingerpicking and legato
15. Music composition and song structure
16. Production basics: How to record audio
17. Production basics: Working with midi
18. Production basics: Percussion
19. Record engineering theory 101
20. Write and record a song


Class Requirements


Desire to learn music and have fun


Class Supplies


Guitar or piano, preferably a laptop. Music software to learn Ableton Live would be helpful.



What skill levels are good for this class?

Any, from beginner to advanced. Yo-Yo Ma says the greatest thing about being a musician is you never stop learning. If you play guitar, learn piano by ear. If you play piano, learn how to translate those skills to the synthesizer and laptop. If you’re playing barre chords and you want to shred, or any of the above, this is the class for you.

Will I learn to read music?

We will cover basics of reading musical notation as a guitar fundamental, but the focus in this class is not to sight-read music or memorize long classical songs. This class will lean more towards playing by ear, playing music that sounds good, and writing and producing songs. We will train your memory and brain to be able to remember what you want to play, so we don’t need sheets of music, rather, we seek to uncover the "music of the spheres" that’s already inside your head.

How much will I have to practice?

I think a goal of 30 minutes to an hour daily is reasonable, music does take time and practice to see real results. I think with this amount of practice, within 1 year anyone should be able to roughly cover most songs, and within 2 years be considered an intermediate guitar player. Ideally, learning music should be an innate desire you want to do every day where it is actually fun and enjoyable to exercise the creative part of your brain, not measured in lengths of time.

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