Hired 1 time
50 years in business
Photos and Videos
Interested musical styles
I met Rick in the early 1980s. I was home, on disability, recovering from an accident that caused irreparable damage to my right hand and arm. I was watching a local TV-talk show for company. Suddenly, one of the guests caught my attention. I listened as a soft-spoken man talked about his love of guitar and his love of teaching. He said he especially liked to teach "older" students. He loved watching them learn to do something they thought was too late for them to learn. I watched and listened as Rick played with command; yet with an incredibly relaxed and delicate touch. I waited anxiously for him to announce how to contact him and if I didn't actually call his music center before his segment was off the air, it was soon afterwards. I had never played guitar before I met Rick, (and I wondered at the time if I could play, because of my injuries.) though I dreamed about it all through my teenage years right up to when I called Rick, in my 30s. When we met, we talked about what I loved about the instrument and what kinds of music I loved. Rick was patient, encouraging and enthusiastic. I'm pretty sure that in our first lesson I played actual music! Rick's guidance, from simple tunes to more complex arrangements, was always challenging, but never beyond me. Rick's skill as a teacher, his own love for the instrument, his uncanny ability to inspire the student with his enthusiasm, makes him one of the best teachers anywhere. He changed my life. Quite seriously.Nov 17, 2014
I studied acoustic finger style guitar with Rick for a couple of years a number of years ago. He is a wonderful guitarist and teacher. He has great patience. I was impressed with his willingness to teach to my strengths instead of merely presenting a "method." He would teach me complex pieces by showing me how to play them phrase by phrase, which was easier for me than reading written music. We'd discuss how to get certain sounds from the guitar and best fingerings. I really enjoyed the lessons. At the end he'd record a slow version of what we'd worked on, something I could take home and listen to or practice with, thereby also training my ear. I learned a lot from Rick, about playing the guitar and about my own musicality.Oct 23, 2014
When Rick opened his music store, Wood & Strings in Massachusetts, he chose the tagline, "Pick the Best You Can." It turns out that this snappy slogan is also his philosophy of music making. Rick has always held high expectations for himself as a musician and as a teacher. And he has the uncanny ability to help students discover their own styles. He did that for me. But what really distinguishes Rick is his dedication to the music beyond the lesson. Stopping by his store from time to time, Rick and I would often end up playing together. It was his observations and suggestions during those sessions that have made the difference in my playing. So if you want to pick the best teacher you can, look no further.Oct 20, 2014
- How did you get started doing this type of work?I was studying classical piano from age 5. When I was thirteen, The Beatles hit. It was all over! I knew I wanted to do that! I picked up a guitar and sat with my record player, picking out all their amazing music off their vinyl records. I was hooked!
- What types of customers have you worked with?I perform both as a solo fingerstyle guitarist (I call it "GUITARtistry") performing unique arrangements of "Baby Boomer Classics" as well as part of my duo with my flautist wife, "Meadowlark". I also have recently rekindled my teaching offering lessons not only locally in northern Arizona, but over the internet as well. I see myself as a mentor as much or more than a traditional teacher as I individualize my instruction to guide my students to find their own "voice" on the instrument!