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Pickin’ Through Music City: A Quick Guide for Nashville Guitarists

By Tyler J. - Nashville Guitar Teacher

Thinking of trying out the Nashville guitar scene? Are you looking to take guitar lessons in Music City? Well, you’re not alone. For decades, Nashville has been one of the most influential hubs for popular music and entertainment. Thousands of musicians have made the move to Middle Tennessee with big aspirations; to become a superstar, to get hired as a sideman, or even just to start a band with like-minded individuals. Whether you want to play for fun or play to pay the bills, Nashville has plenty to satisfy any guitar player’s cravings for a musically rich environment.

First of all, while the country music industry is centered in Nashville, there’s much more than just country here. Rock, indie, pop, blues, and jazz are everywhere in the city, and for those who are interested in Christian and gospel music, you’re in luck: Nashville is the center for the Christian music industry.

I always recommend checking out lower Broadway first. Between the intersections of 6th and Broadway, all the way down to 1st, the streets are lined with live music venues. Some of the people playing on Broadway are playing for tips full-time to pay their rent, while others are playing for fun while they’re in town from being on the road. It’s a great place to network with other guitarists, so go on down, and take it all in. Over time, once you’ve become friends with some of the local players, they may ask you to come “sit in” for a couple songs while they take a break. It’s good to become a familiar face on lower Broadway if you’re looking for gigs on the road; many of these players are hired guns for some of the biggest names in the music business.

Music stores around town are also great places to hang with other guitarists. Corner Music on 12th Ave. South is a local staple for musicians, and Gruhn Guitars is an excellent place to see some vintage guitar gear. I should also mention major stores such as Sam Ash Music and Guitar Center – always great places to meet similar people.

There are plenty of open jam nights around town, too. If you’re ready to jam with some strangers (that soon will become friends), don’t be afraid to ask around for where the “hot spots” are. When I first got to town, the Fiddle and Steel bar on Printer’s Alley was the best place to go on Tuesday nights. There are places like that all over, so don’t be shy about asking people! Whether you go to play or not, it’s great to go and hang out at open jams to hear people play and to make friends.

Going out to the music venues in town is the best way to get some inspiration. Seeing successful players playing great shows is something that always motivates me to strive for bigger and better things. But music venues aren’t the only place you can find other guitarists. As a matter of fact, considering that Nashville has such a high concentration of musicians, you can go just about anywhere to meet players. Coffee shops and local churches are always full of people who are involved in the music business. Be kind, be considerate, and don’t be afraid to open up conversation. While Nashville has a reputation for being competitive, I’ve found it to be very welcoming to newcomers. Most musicians I meet around town are willing to be helpful to newbies looking for work.

Before you start your guitar lessons in Nashville, there are a couple things you should be working on, such as the Nashville number system. Ever hear of it? It’s a form of musical shorthand used to notate chord charts, and while people in most cities don’t use them, almost everyone in Nashville does. There are plenty of resources for learning the number system, including websites and books, so don’t hesitate to start learning now! Most music instructors in Nashville would be glad to help you become a fluent reader of number charts – and many of these instructors can be found right here at TakeLessons!

Something that isn’t all that surprising - but is often overlooked - is the fact that Nashville is all about relationships. Getting hired for a road gig or a spot playing downtown is often simply a matter of being a “good hang,” as I call it. Having a positive attitude, being reliable, and being trustworthy will get you far in life, and Nashville is no different. In fact, I’ve even found that you don’t have to be the most amazing guitarist in town to get hired – you just need to be a good team player.

Music City is glad to have an ever-growing number of musicians around. The metro area has seen unprecedented population growth in recent years, and the economy is booming, so there’s no better time to jump on board. So, if you’re looking to get involved in this local guitar scene and take guitar lessons in Nashville, you’re in luck, because Nashville is an exciting, eclectic, unique, and inspiring place to be. Beginners, intermediate players, and professionals are all welcome; so don’t be afraid to check it out. Good luck, and keep on playing!

About Jordan R.

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Nashville, TN
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All levels of electric guitar techniques including chord vocabulary and power chords, fretboard memorization, movable bar chords, scales and lead guitar techniques, alternate picking, economy picking, sweep picking, ear training, techniques for both clean and distorted rock guitar, funk strumming, jazz accompaniment, jazz lead lines, country lead techniques, and more.

About Jordan
I received my education at the University of Wisconsin, majoring in Jazz Guitar. I've studied with some of the best guitarists in the Midwest, and have performed live and in recording studios all across the country in a variety of styles (Rock, Metal, Bluegrass, Jazz, Classical, Country). I've performed internationally, and my playing has been featured on several prime time television shows. I've always had a love of music, and it’s a passion that I try to instill in all of my students!

Through focus on note reading, chords, improvisation, and technique, I try to give my students tools that
they can take with them throughout their musical journey, whether playing music for fun or professionally!

*** Lesson Details ***
I like to be laid back and very individual with my approach. I always introduce a curriculum designed to teach basic chords, note reading, and basic theory, but I also understand that each student has a particular set of interests, and I want to inspire them to follow those interests. Whether it's Rock, Blues, Country, Folk, or Classical, I want to give my students the tools and understanding that they need to excel at the music that drives them.

*** Travel Equipment ***
I expect my students to have everything that they need to practice the materials that I give them, including an instrument, amplifier and tuner if necessary, and a music stand. I provide all lesson materials.

*** Specialties ***
I specialize in rock, country, metal, blues, and jazz with an emphasis on theory and technique.
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Reviews
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Josh E. April 25, 2017
· Country Guitar · Online
Jordan was very helpful right from the start. He listened to me on where I am at and where I want to be. He showed me a few things that we will work towards and then helped me understand my instrument much better. Gave me some fun new things to practice before the next lesson. If you're looking for a lesson that is interactive and fun I recommend Jordan and the online thing is supper easy and handy. I don't think it could have gone any better. The lesson was 45 minutes and it felt like 10.
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Dave February 1, 2017
· Guitar · In home
Jordan is excellent & very patient.
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Max January 13, 2017
· Guitar · In home
Jordan is a fantastic teacher! He expertly and patiently guided my young son from essentially 0 to reading notes and playing them on the guitar in about half an hour. He is clearly an experienced musician who loves to teach. We are looking forward to the next lesson.
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Jordan R.

Jordan R.

Nashville, TN 37211
(13)
starting at
$20 / 30-min

About Jessica L.

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Nashville, TN

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I teach beginner to intermediate guitar. We will create a lesson plan based on your goals and interests.

About Jessica
The most important part of lessons with me is having fun! I am a nationally touring singer songwriter and I specialize in teaching kids and adults of all ages guitar, piano, voice and songwriting. I also have experience with very young children in a preschool and music therapy environment.

I teach guitar, piano, voice and songwriting with the intention of enabling students to create their own songs and performances whether it be to pursue a professional career as a musician or as a creative hobby.

I have years of experience teaching beginner to intermediate students. I have worked wi
th children as young as three up to adults. Whether you're just starting out or you are an expert that would like to write or perfect your own songs we will make a fun and original lesson plan just for you!

*** Travel Equipment ***
I have an acoustic guitar I could provide.

*** Specialties ***
Singer/Songwriter, Musical Theater, Pop/Rock, Acoustic
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Reviews
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Sienna P. October 3, 2016
· Singing · In home
Jessica has a wonderful personality and was very good with my 10 year old daughter. She made the lesson educational and fun.
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Bailey August 28, 2016
· Guitar · In home
Patient.
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Talluah W. August 25, 2016
· Singing · In home
Jessica is wonderful! My 6 yr old daughter loves her, and she is progressing very nicely after 6 weekly lessons. Jess comes in prepared every week with something new and fun for my daughter. I would definitely recommend her!
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Jessica L.

Jessica L.

Nashville, TN 37206
(14)
starting at
$50 / 30-min

About Caleb E.

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Nashville, TN
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I am a 12 year guitar player and teacher. I studied under 2 time Grammy Winner, Curtis Burch to specialize in bluegrass, folk, country, jazz, and blues. I am very versatile and a sought after session player from Cincinnati to Nashville. I started playing when I was 10 and love teaching kids that same age.

About Caleb
Caleb E. has been teaching music since 2005 and is available to teach at your home or his studio. Caleb has helped students from age 8 to 65 and believes that there is no age limit on learning and trying something new or even getting better. Caleb is a two year student of the Kentucky School of Bluegrass and Traditional Music with a degree as a professional recording artist.
Helping students achieve goals regarding musical technique, personal creativity, and self confidence is a personal mission for Caleb and loves to teach in a personal, hands on approach.
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Reviews
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Jen R. April 13, 2017
· Banjo · Online
online was a little challenging, but Caleb was great.
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Corinne W. March 1, 2017
· Mandolin · Online
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Chris February 1, 2017
· Mandolin · Online
I really enjoy working with Caleb. I am currently learning bluegrass mandolin and have made a great deal of progress with his guidance. As a piano player, it was important for me to find a strong musician who could help me translate between the to. He works to make sure we are working on things of interest.....if you got the drive, he can help you find your voice on the instrument.
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Caleb E.

Caleb E.

Nashville, TN 37211
(27)
starting at
$35 / 30-min

About Rachel C.

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Nashville, TN

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I have taught guitar for 10 years and believe students should get to play what they want to play! Students are asked to come up with a list of songs and/or artists they would love to play. Through teaching chords, note reading and theory, the song possibilities are endless! I also can help the aspiring singer/guitar player to be able to both play and sing simultaneously.

About Rachel
Hello there! I'm Rachel C., a bass player and singer on the stage who also enjoys playing and teaching all stringed instruments. I have a degree from Bowling Green State University (Ohio) in Music Education. I've taught lessons for over 10 years and truly love working with eager students of all ages. It's never too early or too late to pick up an instrument and make music! I look forward to working with you!
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Reviews
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Kyle Uramkin U. May 21, 2017
· Acoustic Guitar · Online
Rachel is amazing!!!! my daughter loves working with her.
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Andrew March 21, 2017
· Bass Guitar · Online
Great lesson with Rachel.
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Sichang L. March 19, 2017
· Guitar · In studio
Rachel is very professional as a music instructor. There's no doubt about her wealth of knowledge and experience. She is also very patient and explain things clearly, and she offers effective methods to improve my guitar technique. I've been learning guitar with Rachel for about one and a half month, and I've been steadily making progress. Besides, Rachel is a wonderful person to work with. Her passion and positive energy make learning a joyful experience. I trust her, and I feel lucky to have her as a teacher.
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Rachel C.

Rachel C.

Nashville, TN 37221
(27)
starting at
$24 / 30-min

About Mallory B.

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Hermitage, TN

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I excel at teaching young people how to navigate the guitar using single notes, chords etc. I will teach you how to read music as well as how to use chords to cover your favorite songs or even write some of your own!

About Mallory
My name is Mallory and I just recently moved to Nashville from Los Angeles. I had a roster there of 55 private students of all ages and levels. I am immediately available and I have extensive experience instructing at summer camps, musical theatre, contemporary vocals, songwriting workshops etc. For Private Lessons, I teach a combination of a classical and contemporary approach in all mediums: Piano, Voice, Guitar, Songwriting, Acting, Musical Theater, Audition Prep, Shakespeare etc. Teaching is a passion and a joy so if you're looking for a teacher who cares and will tailor each lesson to the
individual student, look no further!
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Reviews
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Elizabeth Whipple May 17, 2017
· Singing · Online
I was very nervous to start singing lessons but after the first lesson with Mallory i was totally comfortable and she kept me very inspired!
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Janemarie April 22, 2017
· Guitar · Online
My teacher is wonderful! She is understanding and great at comunicotine with me. Thank you Mallory
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tamar April 3, 2017
· Music Recording · In home
i like singing with my family and stuff and to sing to my self
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Mallory B.

Mallory B.

Nashville, TN 37203
(10)
starting at
$35 / 30-min

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