Are (guitar) teachers “evil?”

Are (guitar) teachers “evil?”
Are (guitar) teachers “evil?”

Cracking the whip…

Slapping your hand with a ruler…

Throwing chalk at you if you misbehave…

These are all things that teachers USED to do.

I don’t know this from personal experience (I’m too young for that)…

But I’ve heard stories from my grandparents.

So how evil can guitar teachers be now?

Here’s the funny thing though…

While teachers can’t do any of this stuff anymore…

There are teachers out there who use equally damaging methods.

Here’s one example...

I was teaching a lesson and two students began chatting.

They were talking about their experiences growing up and doing music at school.

What they told me was quite shocking.

Both of them talked about their horrific experience…

Being shouted at… made fun of… put down…

And both of them had the same feelings… they HATED music at school.

I mean can you blame them?

Who would find that fun?

Thankfully as adults they were able to not let this hold them back from doing music as an adult…

Do you have any scary stories about teachers?

Sometimes I’ll hear things from people like:

“A face-to-face teacher is not going smack you in the head with a ruler if you fail to maintain good habits.

At a certain point you have to discipline yourself to do things correctly.”

While there are aspects of this I agree with… how a teacher isn't going to smack you over the head…

And while I also agree that people eventually need to discipline themselves…

This doesn’t happen overnight.

Partly because there’s too many moving pieces you have to keep track of…

And also because even if you could go at it on your own… everyone has blindspots.

Or things they think they’re doing well but aren’t.

I’m not exempt from this…

This is why I still have teachers to this day.

I know there’s things I don’t know… and I know I’m not going to be able to manage it all myself.

It’s just unrealistic.

Is it possible that someone can “make it” on their own… always teaching themselves?

Sure… look at the Jimi Hendrix’s of the world.

But how often do you hear about these people? Few and far between.

The newer someone is to the guitar… the rarer this kind of person is.

I think having a good… supportive teacher is invaluable for learning.

They should be able to keep things fun…

Do their best to keep you motivated (without hitting you over the head with a ruler)...

But above all… they can help to train you to install the good habits faster.

Some people will always want to try it themselves.

Will it work for them? Maybe.

Will they get good at guitar? It’s likely.

But the question is… how much time do you want to put in?

As a guitar teacher… I specialise in helping those who realise having a teacher is invaluable.

If you’re looking for lessons… I run a music school in Stratford, London (for those of you who don’t know.)

If you’re open to having me help you… just reach out and get in contact.

Otherwise… whatever you do… try to find a teacher that’s right for you!

Talk soon,

Darryl “not so wicked” Powis