If I remember correctly, the first piece of music that I ever learned to play on guitar was “House of The Rising Sun”. It was the version by The Animals that was a big hit in the UK in the late 1960’s. I was hooked on the opening, played in an arpeggio style. just a simple little chord progression, but to me it sounded miraculous.

So me and my mates all got down to working out how to play it. There weren’t no internet or mobile phones in those days. Not even CDs. I had to play the vinyl continuously by walking over to the record player and lifting and repositioning the needle. Then pick up my guitar and try to get it bit by bit.

These days, practically everything you want to learn is available instantly via tablature sites, YouTube teachers, books, websites etc. Do you know how lucky you are?

And think about how some of the greats of folk and blues guitar learned their craft. They sat and watched other players and worked out how to do it. Or if they were lucky, they would get a lesson from that player.

One of my guitar heroes is the great Stefan Grossman.

stefan grossmanStefan Grossman

Stefan fell in love with the music of great players like the Rev. Gary Davis, a superstar of finger-picking acoustic guitar. Gary Davis was blind from birth and needed a “lead boy” to help him from show to show etc. Stefan took on the job, and as Gary Davis played, he transcribed what he heard. Eventually he had a large amount of material which he published. Studying Stefan Grossman’s books was how I learned to finger pick. We have to thank pioneers like Stefan for their commitment to making the work of great players accessible to us all.

Another magic guitar moment for me was hearing the brilliant opening to Day Tripper by The Beatles. What a killer opening riff. Great guitar sound too, presumably played by George Harrison.

So I’d love to know what magical guitar moment inspired you to get a guitar and learn to play.



Leave a Reply


Get every new post on this blog delivered to your Inbox.

Join other followers: