The Blog

The Truth About Mastering The Guitar

Posted by Mark McKenzie on April 19th, 2015

“I bet I’m the worst student you’ve ever had” she said as she started to put her guitar away. The truth is, Lisa was probably the most talented person to sit opposite me in months. She was a real natural and picked everything up quicker than most. She was a complete beginner and had always […]


Do guitar drills actually help your playing?

Posted by Mark McKenzie on April 10th, 2015

The thing I love about getting face to face with other aspiring musicians that are hungry to improve, is knowing that I’m going to learn something from them. I know, I know… you’ve heard that cheesy statement before, but it’s so true and here’s another example of it. I met Bill (not his real name) […]

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Silencing the ‘Little Advisor’ (A.K.A. Overcoming Guitar Procrastination)

Posted by Mark McKenzie on April 6th, 2015

One word that seems to manifest an uneasy feeling in most of us humans is the word discipline. So often it’s associated with pain, boredom and generally doing stuff we don’t like. As a child at school, I was often told, ‘you need to be more disciplined’ or I would overhear my mother being told, […]


Perfectionism vs Pushing Through

Posted by Mark McKenzie on March 29th, 2015

The guitar students that I’ve taught throughout the last 20 years or so all fall into two categories when it comes to their particular style of practicing. They either ‘push through’, meaning they just keep playing away regardless of the sound/noise they’re making. Or they are perfectionists who spend most of their time NOT playing […]


How Much Should I Practice Guitar?

Posted by Mark McKenzie on March 22nd, 2015

I often get asked, “How much should I practice guitar” and “How much practice will I need to do to get good at guitar?” Everyone has their own answer for this. I find the answers most people give to be quite overwhelming. People think 2 hours every day! Or 8 hours in the weekend! And […]

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Which guitar players should I listen to?

Posted by Mark McKenzie on February 24th, 2015

“Which guitar players should I listen to?” “Who should I emulate?” I get these questions from students all the time. Who floats your boat? Who tickles your fancy? Who do you wish you could play like? The truth is, you are already drawn to the guitar players that you need to listen to or study. […]


Confessions of an 80’s Guitar Shredder

Posted by Mark McKenzie on February 16th, 2015

I learned guitar in the 80’s. This was a time when guitar solos were fast, squealy and played by real men… dudes dressed as women that worshipped the devil and wore makeup (to quote the great comedian Bill Burr). I was obsessed with the Steve Vai guitar duel in the classic movie Crossroads where actor […]

Steel Panther

Start Jamming with the SoundCloud ‘backing tracks’ tab

Posted by Jon Coursey on October 20th, 2014

One of the best ways to improve your guitar skills is to practice playing along with backing tracks. Until now, all of our backing tracks have come in the video – which is fine when you only want to attempt the ‘jam along’ section as part of your lesson. But what if you want to […]

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Taking the Mystery Out of Scales

Posted by Jon Coursey on October 16th, 2014

If you’ve tried learning lead guitar before, you’ll know that playing scales and making music are two totally different things. Played from top to bottom and back – the scale can be one of the most boring things you’ll ever hear coming out of a guitar… BUT, when the right notes are chosen and played at the right […]


Why playing guitar scales is bad for your soloing

Posted by Mark McKenzie on August 7th, 2014

Did the title grab you? Are you infuriated or intrigued? Is your face screwed up about to unleash a scathing comment? Or are you thinking, “yeah I’ve tried playing guitar scales and I’m still crap at soloing?” Now don’t get me wrong… I’ve practised guitar scales for hours and hours, and it allowed me to […]

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