RGT Registered Guitar Tutor


I started playing the guitar at 13 and studied classical guitar with Jonathan Priestley I've taken part in masterclass sessions with Carlos Bonell and perform as a classical guitar soloist.

I love all things guitar and along with classical guitar play electric guitar across many styles - country, rock, blues, and jazz being my favourites.

A full time guitar tutor for 10 years I have a genuine passion for guitar education and have a wealth of professional experience as a player/teacher working in both Schools with the Derbyshire Music Service and as a private teacher.

If exams are your thing, I have great success in helping students get their grades; ABRSM, Trinity Guildhall, Rockschool and RGT.
I have an enhanced DBS check and am a member of the
Private Guitar Lessons

Keep it Social

Lick of the week

By Noel Hathaway 19 Oct, 2017
This weeks Lick, takes place over two forms of G, (E & G) - see diagram below. It follows on from TeleTuesday_17.10.17 , there are open strings where possible and the lick descends at a steady 1/8th beat through the E shaped G chord. I guess you can also think of it as the first shape of the minor pentatonic.  The star here though are the double stops which are tritones rather than the usual thirds. I think Redd Volkaert makes use of these a lot - check out his spot in ' Pre-Cluster Pluck '.
A tritone is a literal description, the distance between each note is three tones. There are ghosted percussion sounds in-between each double stop for that chicken pickin' feel.

Hope you have fun!
By Noel Hathaway 16 Oct, 2017
A bit of a workout for both hands. This weeks TeleTuesday is a little in the style of Albert Lee, and moves between three CAGED shapes of the C major chord - E, G and A7. If you can see a chord you can see an arpeggio and a scale, and so chords are really useful way of getting about the fretboard.

Licks that use open strings can be played with just a pick, but work best with hybrid picking - Pick, M and A fingers. The aim is to hear all of the notes ringing over each other so don't rush it at first.

Have fun!
By Noel Hathaway 12 Oct, 2017
Double stops are just 2 notes played simultaneously, perhaps made most famous by Mr Berry - you know the immortal intro... Double stops are a neat way of getting around the fretboard and can enliven fills and solos. 

This weeks lick uses double stops that appear in and around an 'E' shape C major chord - see diagram below.  The lick starts from the 'top' of the chord and descends also just like Mr Berry's J B Goode, each double stop is slid into from a semitone below - you could experiment with different rhythm patterns here to add interest or suggest another style, rockabilly anyone? The third double in may seem an odd shape - 'backwards', but it makes for a tritone,which is very country!

Please try this one and put it to use in your own improvising, have fun!

Download a PDF here .

By Noel Hathaway 09 Oct, 2017
This week we're celebrating the blue notes, flattened intervals - namely the 3's, 5's and 7's. These notes are normally found on there own inside the Major/Minor blues scales and the natural minor scale. Since Country music is rooted in the blues then...
The framework for this lick though are chords - Open C major and the 'F' voicing of F and G major. The scale tones are slotted in and around these shapes, see diagrams below.
There are lots of legato - pull offs here, so practise these slowly and make sure the tone/attack is consistent across all fretting fingers.

Try making your own lick up over the same progression, as ever listen to your inner voice and express it through your fingers.

Have fun!
By Noel Hathaway 05 Oct, 2017
This weeks lick is in the key of A major. It's a fairly simple one that uses three positions of the A major pentatonic scale.

It starts in position 3 on the third of A - C#, then position 2 on the second - B and finally position 1 on the root - A.
Finally there's an ascending move back up to the C# but this time in Sixths. At the end you'll find a voicing of A major.
To add some character during the sixths, lift off your middle finger slightly to mute the third string, which will give a percussive  - chicken pickin' sound!

Have fun!
By Noel Hathaway 03 Oct, 2017
Being able to lead into and out of a country song is a key part of playing the style.
Today we're looking at a fairly simple 'walk in' in the key of  A major. The idea is to create tension and release before the song starts on the I chord.

The lick above starts with a third's idea. Starting with the root A then moving  through the A major scale, A- B - C#. Bar two is based on the C form of A major and includes bends and a little minor/major idea at the end.

Have fun!

By Noel Hathaway 28 Sep, 2017
This weeks Country Guitar Lick can be seen from 2 points of view. One is that each time the chord changes the lick follows, so;  Eminor chord play - root E, third G and fourth A. D major chord play - third F#, fifth A and sixth B. G major major chord play - G arpeggio, G B D notes. As ever I've 'seen' it with chord shapes in mind - CAGED system. (Cm shape, A shape, C major shape and A shape again for the G).
The other would be to see the whole thing as being the E minor scale. The lick starts at a point along the scale; Root E, major second F# and minor third G.
The chord progression although starting on Em is in reality in the key of G. Since G Major and E minor are relatives - they contain the same notes, just starting at different points - you can interchange them. (A sure fire way to get a country sound is to play the E minor scale over a G chord. Try looping just a G chord, play the E minor scale or E minor pentatonic scale and see for yourself).
I've finished the lick on a G note though to bring it all together. If it had finished on an E then it wouldn't have resolved, not a bad idea but something for another time.

Have fun, and keep on chickin pickin'
By Noel Hathaway 26 Sep, 2017
The lick above starts with an A Major Chord (E form) then moves between different forms of D chord shapes, the A form of D major before a stabbed D chord (C form), the lick then moves through that shape then back up into a D7 (A7 form).
Bar 3 is a little trick to execute so slow practice is needed there.
Diagrams below show what these CAGED forms look like, and hopefully you can see how they fit together.

Have fun!
By Noel Hathaway 22 Sep, 2017
This weeks lick takes place over two voicings of a D chord - C and A forms. I know the CAGED system divides opinion but I find it really useful when creating fills or solos in country songs, or anywhere where chords are shifting around quite fast.
Not sure what the CAGED system is? At a simple level it works by visualising the neck of the guitar as 5 chord shapes C-A-G-E-D with each chord shape having a corresponding arpeggio/scale pattern.  If you're not sure what the CAGED system is then check out  my resources section where I'll be putting a guide up on this subject.

In this lick I've included an approach note from C# - D, a walk chromatically up to the major third and hitting the flat 7 for a tritone to add tension. Then another chromatic walk up to the flat 5 - A flat, before finishing on the major third and flat 7 - C, this gives an unresolved rather cool finish, but I decided to included a slow bend up to the 'home' note D.
Have a go at creating your own over a different chord - say the 4 chord - G...

Have Fun!
By Noel Hathaway 14 Sep, 2017
This weeks country guitar lick is based in the key of D major and follows the move from Chord V - A to I - D.
The majority of the lick gets you playing through chord tones for stability but introduces 'outside' sounds - flattened thirds, sixths and sevenths.
There are hammer ons and slides for you to work on your legato playing and the lick finishes on a bend into a D chord, which mimics a lap steel guitar sound.

Have fun!

More Posts
Share by: