The Course

This course will develop your skills in guitar accompaniment. Accompaniment means “something that complements something else”. Singers or instrumentalists can be accompanied by a whole orchestra and the accompaniment gives them the basic foundation of music. With that in mind, as an accompanist, you need to know how music works to be able to provide that musical foundation to the singer or instrumentalist. Guitar is an outstanding instrument for accompaniment thanks to the warmth, intimacy of its sound and its percussive quality to deal with different rhythmic styles.  

The Benefits of the Course

If you always wanted to play the guitar your own way, are from 30 years of age and have an appreciation for Vietnamese and English oldies, you might want to take up this course. For you as a person with other commitments than music, the main advantage of the course is:

  • Help you to understand how music works in practical terms and set you up for further musical journey.
  • Exercises are in 5-minute chunks and deal mostly with developing your musical ear so that they can be practiced anywhere without the guitar and don’t take you 1 hour at a piece every day. 

Other benefits of the course for you are:

  • Set you up in thinking as a musician, not only as a guitarist.
  • You work on simple but deep principles.
  • You hear as much as possible and play as little as necessary (play the essentials).
  • You look at 100 song examples at different music perspectives, learn to ingrain the sound of standard chord progressions through pop hits so that you can comfortably apply them and develop a sense of rhythmic complexity

What You Can Do after the Course

  • You can provide guitar accompaniment your own way because you're equipped with various harmonic and rhythmic concepts that you can pick and put them together to your taste to create interesting accompaniment. Guitar is foremost a rhythmic instrument and rhythm is the foundation of all great playing. The deeper you understand rhythmic concepts, the better you play. Another key for an effective accompanist is a great knowledge of chord movements. Hence the focus is on rhythm and harmony.
  • You will have a musical knowledge and ear at an upper-intermediate level and be completely able to efficiently study music further by yourself to find your own musical voice

About Playing Rhythm Guitar and Lead Guitar

Young guitar players often have a misconception that rhythm playing is only for beginners and lead guitar is for the advanced. This is a misunderstanding of what music really is. Music is not about competition, being in the spotlight and showing off your ego. And musically, what makes great playing is rhythm. Rhythm is the foundation and backbone of any music. The better you understand rhythm concepts, the deeper you'll groove and the better you'll sound. 

About Playing (Fingerstyle) Solo Guitar

I've been asked to teach solo guitar but I don't have anything special to teach about that. My solo guitar arrangement is mainly based on the rhythmic and harmonic concepts that I lay out in this course. For me, the rhythm is the first thing I need to work on for a new song, then comes the harmony (or a bass line). In the end, I'll try to negotiate between rhythm, melody and harmony within a framework which is the particular feel of the song. In my opinion, if you know clearly what you want to play, eventually you'll find your own guitar techniques or arrangements to bring that out and that's why every player has his own solo arrangement.  

Course Format and Syllabus

The course is 20 weeks long. Classroom is once a week (1.5 hours). You need to work at least 1 hour per day at home but as stated, that can be in 5-minute chunks and away from the guitar.  

Course Syllabus