Archives: May 2011 - Jim Bowley

May 27, 2011

Learn Those Songs!

by jim — Categories: General Music, Technique SpotlightLeave a comment

Touring guitarist Peter Thorn (Melissa Etheridge, Jewel, Chris Cornell and more) writes a great column for Premier Guitar magazine, called “The Working Guitarist”.  All of his pieces are terrific and the focus is on gear, attitude, performance, etc. for the guitarist with a gig.   But my favorite article by Peter is called, “You’ve Got the Gig, Now Learn Those Songs!” The focus here is on learning new material efficiently, which is great information for any guitarist, not just those with a steady gig.

If you’ve ever found yourself in the position of “new guy” (or girl) in a band, you know that there is quite a challenge in learning all of the band’s material quickly and accurately.  Peter’s article covers all of the options he uses; interestingly, none of them involve internet TABs!  He does mention using a particular transcription software, Transcribe! , which I’m going to check out for myself.  I’ll write a review of this software in an upcoming post once I’ve gotten familiar with it.

The Working Guitarist: You’ve Got the Gig, Now Learn Those Songs!

May 26, 2011

Songs Are Overrated. Riffs Rule.

Ted Nugent

I figured that title would get your attention.  Especially if you believe that learning entire songs is the best indicator of your progress on guitar. 

Is learning a whole song good for you?  Sure. 

Is it absolutely necessary?  It depends. 

Can you make tremendous progress as a guitarist without learning entire songs?  Absolutely.

The truth is that learning entire songs is overrated for the beginner guitarist. However, learning riffs, intros, chord progressions, melodies – the recognizable and memorable parts of songs – well that’s just plain fun!

And contained within each memorable part are invaluable nuggets of musical goodness waiting for you to discover them. Do not underestimate the value of the classic guitar riff.

How can I be sure that this approach to learning guitar will work? (more…)

May 24, 2011

High Flyin’ Guitar

by jim — Categories: Student Success StoriesLeave a comment

Dan in 2011, ready to take on the world!

Well, it feels like the end of an era.  After 4+ years as my guitar student, Daniel Walsh moves on to an exciting new chapter in his life, as he prepares to graduate from high school and head off to college.  My guitar studio’s loss is Uncle Sam’s gain, though, as Dan will soon be leaving Maryland for Colorado and the United States Air Force Academy!

It’s been a thrill to watch him go from a young teen playing his first chords to a young man with serious chops!  But more than being a fine guitarist, Dan is a quality dude – humble, coachable, kind, polite, and quick to smile.  We’ve had a lot of fun jammin’, but even more fun just hanging out and talking about sports, school, travel, family … life!

Daniel, it’s been an honor to share in your musical journey and your passion for guitar.  Here’s to health, happiness, good music, and some great, high flyin’ adventures in the years to come!  jb



May 16, 2011

Six String Life

by jim — Categories: General MusicLeave a comment

Please check out my upcoming blog, “Six String Life” – where it’s all about the music. And some other stuff. Six String Life


by jim — Categories: General MusicLeave a comment

You’ll find over one hundred FREE guitar lessons and articles here, all designed to help the beginner and intermediate guitar player play at a more professional level.

The lessons contain highly practical concepts and essential guitar techniques that have been “real world” tested – onstage – for over 25 years. Plus, they are educationally sound, having been developed with real, live students for the last decade.

Read More

Jim Bowley is a professional guitarist, teacher and blogger. A native of Baltimore, he has over 30 years of playing experience and an advanced degree in Music Education from Towson University. Jim lives in Bel Air, MD where he maintains a thriving private lesson studio and performs with his band, Remains of Radio.

© 2012 Jim Bowley All rights reserved.
Custom WordPress theme by
Hairy Dog Digital