Green Chain Qt: Back on The Heath

Looking forward my next gig with the fabulous Soul-Jazz oriented Green Chain Quartet: we're at Golders Hill Bandstand, Hampstead on 27th August. Expect all the groovy Boogaloo on the Heath from 3 to 5pm. See you there!

Check us out: The Green Chain Quartet - Short Cuts (opens in a separate window in Youtube)


The GCQ... Greening it up... Grooving it up

The Summer Strummers course is back!

Want to learn to play the guitar or ukulele this summer?  I'm starting a new 6 lesson Summer course just for people who want strum a few simple songs.

Ever imagined yourself being able to strum songs by the campfire, on the beach, or leading a sing-along at parties, impressing friends and relatives? Or maybe a
s a personal challenge, just for your own enjoyment?  Well you can.

This is a 6 lesson course for absolute beginners, no experience necessary. All you need is an acoustic guitar, or ukulele, short spaces of time for practice and the ambition to learn 6 songs. Simple.

Over the 6 lessons you'll learn 6 songs, 3 of your own choice; a song each week. You'll learn how to adapt the strumming patterns and chords you learn to many other songs.

You can learn solo, share with a friend, pile all the lessons into 2 weeks, whatever suits you, it's your call.

Each lesson lasts an hour; at the end of each lesson an achievable practice schedule is set out, with targets lined up ready to focus your progress.

To book just use the contact form on the right, or email. Usual rates apply, see the Lessons page for more information.

Whatever you're doing, have a great summer :-)

Mo-Bo back at The Alexandra Thursday 15 June

Mo-Bo are live this Thursday 15th June, from 8pm at the Alexandra, in Penge, S E London. This week with special guest, boogaloo soul-jazz blues guru on keyboards... Johnny G!

Expect jazzy, funky pop, bebop and blues... perhaps even an Irish jig, a reel, a horn-pipe 😳?! 

Lovely venue, great beers, (great music), nice people... See you there for a few schooners, or maybe a cocktail.... :-)





Forthcoming Mo-Bo Duo and Green Chain Quartet gigs

I'm back with my old buddy Richard, (50% of the Mo-Bo (Morrison-Bold) duo) at The Alexandra, in Penge, S E London playing all your favourite jazz, funky pop and blues tunes on Thursday 15th June from 8pm.

And back again with jazz-blues, soul-boogaloo specialists The Green Chain Quartet when we return to the lovely Birdie Num Nums in New Cross on Sunday 25th June from 8pm.

Looking forward to seeing there.  Enjoy what you are hearing?  Then please tweet us at @davebold_guitar !

Thanks - Dave

              

         

The Green Chain Quartet: GCQ Live at Arts Cafe: Saturday 6th May

The Green Chain Quartet: GCQ Live at Arts Cafe: Saturday 6th May:   The Green Chain Quartet are back at the Arts Cafe in Manor Park Lewisham. This Saturday 6th May, 4-5pm. 

Great quirky little venue (we seem to specialise in these!) http://www.lewishamartscafe.uk/

See you there!

The Green Chain Quartet - Celebrating International Jazz Day!

Celebrating International Jazz Day! 

The Green Chain Quartet are back at Birdie Num Nums this Sunday 30th April, from 8pm. 


Birdie's is  great little place in New Cross, South London, just over the road from Goldsmith's College. Great food, bar, cafe, nice vibe, everyone agrees.. get there, you'll love it.


Where: 11 Lewisham Way, London SE14 6PP (Opposite Goldsmiths College)


Birdie Num Nums Facebook Page



RGT & Trinity Exam Entry Deadline 1 May 2017



Hey y'all.  Just a reminder to everyone that the RGT and Trinity School of Music Exams entry deadline is imminent.

If you haven't put your exam application form in yet you need to do so by the end of the month. Deadline is 1 May 2017.



Mo-Bo: Live at The Alexandra this Thursday... with special guest!

Mo-Bo Duo are at The Alexandra in Penge (163 Parish Lane, Penge, London SE20 7JH). This Thursday, 27th April, from 8pm.


This week with special guest sax player David 'Prof' Morris.  Great atmosphere. If you haven't seen what the old place looks like now... you really should.  Good food, warm ambience. Great beers, cocktails and ciders on tap too.


Look forward to seeing you there!


The Prof - guesting with Mo-Bo this Thursday

Gordon Webber's Road Runners at London Marathon

Gordon Mark Webber's fantabulous Road Runners are back at Water Station 6 in Greenwich (by Maze Hill) for the London Marathon on Sunday.

Playing the tunes to keep the runners running and the rest of us warm! If you are running, or there to watch, give us a wave, or.... you can tweet us: @davebold_guitar @GordonMarkMusic @PhilVeacock

It's a great spot to see the runners coming through because at this point they are still pretty close together. We usually start playing at about 9.30. Hopefully see you there, as usual it'll be wonderful!





Mo-Bo new gig

Mo-Bo Duo have a new regular gig at The Alexandra in Penge (163 Parish Lane, Penge, London SE20 7JH) playing there every 2 weeks on a Thursday.

If you haven't seen what the old place looks like now... you really should.  Good food, warm ambience. Great beers and ciders on tap too.

Our next gig is on Thursday 27th April.  Look forward to seeing you there 😀




New! Summer Blues Course

The 12 week blues course has been popular so I'm going to keep it running throughout the Spring/early Summer.

Following on from the success of my Winter Blues and Winter Jazz courses, this blues course takes a similar format.  You can start as a complete beginner, or with a range of experience, the course will be tailored to you.

The real focus is to improve your playing through a blues pathway while learning some great songs. Simple!

Learn to play the Blues through learning songs and instrumentals!


Together we'll sit down and tailor-make a 12 week course for you, to move you from where you are in your playing now, to where you'd like to be in 3 months time.

The 12 week course will contain between 6 and 8 tunes to learn, each one negotiated between us to work out which tunes will suit you best to develop your playing style. This could be electric guitar, acoustic guitar, slide guitar: covering Delta Blues, Chicago Blues, Country Blues, Folk Blues, it's your call!

Each week you'll study your tunes, work through the chords, the tune, the rhythm and organise your approaches for playing solos, introductions, turnarounds, outros and endings.  If you have a favourite player we can take an in depth look at their playing style and techniques to get you in their zone as soon as possible.

The tunes we select together will include those played regularly at jams sessions, including classic tunes such as Baby Please Don't Go, Dust My Blues, Further On Up The Road, Killing Floor, Phone Booth, Stormy Monday, Spoonful, Roadhouse Blues, Sweet Home Chicago, Catfish Blues, Smokestack Lightning and many more. At the end of the 12 weeks you'll know the tunes inside out, along with different rhythmic styles, and great licks and lines you can use to take solos on them.

The course includes a free 1 hour introductory lesson to evaluate your starting points in technique, and experience, so we can hit the ground running the day you start your first proper lesson.

Build good practice habits for great progress


An Introductory Lesson (free) - will cover an assessment of your current technique, level of understanding and preferred learning styles. Along with discussions on what targets we set, likely practice plans and useful listening list.

The course will fall broadly into 3 areas:

Foundations - Weeks 1 - 4: typically this will include: getting your ears in gear and fingers moving efficiently around the fretboard, so you play what you want to, and what you hear, not what your fingers are limited to.

Chord patterns for your tunes, the two main blues scales, double stops, blues fingerings, licks and phrasing along with the rhythm and vamping patterns that all apply to the tunes you have selected to work on. In short, building your musical scaffold. This stage also includes some visualisation and memory techniques for quicker learning of songs, licks, fingerings, rhythm patterns etc.


Build your hearing skills with musical games 


Moving on Weeks 5 - 8: Putting all the above information and resources into your playing.
Phrasing, fretboard mapping; getting a clear and simple understanding of how things really work on your fretboard. How to use the phrases you've learnt and make them your own. Fun music exercises and games that you can also use instantly into your playing. Building your rhythm and timing skills. Fun music hearing exercises - tap into the 'musical ear you didn't know you had' to make huge leaps in your playing. All of this while working on your next set of tunes.

Consolidating - Weeks 9 - 12: Building your blues vocabulary. Turning the scales, chord tones into definable licks and phrasing. Common licks used with different chord changes, how to adapt licks to fit lots of playing situations. Rhythm comping and filling out between phrases as part of your playing style. More on rhythm - getting in the groove with a great feel for the backbeat, swing, funk and gospel influences. And applying all of this to your final set of chosen tunes.

To get started simply use the contact form to the right of this page, or email me at dave@davebold.com.  Fees for the course are the same as my standard rates; info on the Lessons page.

Mo-Bo Duo recordings update

Great way to kick off your Easter! We're at the fantastic new completely refurbished Alexandra pub (opposite Alexandra Nurseries), 163 Parish Lane, Penge, London SE20 7JH tonight Thursday 13th April from 8pm. Come and say hello! Or send us a tweet at: @davebold_guitar

New sounds added to the Mo-Bo Duo page: Sound clips of Acid Jazz, Funk, Chilled, Mambo, it's all there along with all the Swing, Jazz, Bebop, Latin, Bossa Novas, Sambas, Blues, Pop and Rock stuff we do - check our sample set list here on the Mo-Bo Duo page

So when you sit down for a cuppa, give the links a click and enjoy. A great way to spend 15 mins of your life, guaranteed!

More info on the Morrison-Bold (Mo-Bo) Duo here on the Mo-Bo page.

Mo-Bo: Live at Beer Rebellion (yep, we bagged the comfy seats)

The Green Chain Quartet!

The Green Chain Quartet now have their own website at: Green Chain Quartet where you can read about how the band came into being...  We have a long history together of not being The Green Chain Quartet, but always admiring that very groovy style of music.  Finally we got it together, featuring John Gittos on keyboards, Mel Wright on drums, David Morris on saxes and yours truly on guitar.

Green Chain: Live at Birdie Num Nums

The quartet specialise in that funky Jazz-Soul Boogaloo style from the late 1960s/early 1970s. Often featuring a Hammond B3 organ and made popular by B3 players Jimmy Smith, Jimmy McGriff, Larry Young, and guitarists Wes Montgomery, Grant Green, Boogaloo Joe Jones and a young George Benson (!)

Check out the video clips for more info and, if you like the style of music (it's hard not to!), and you are putting on an event, party or whatever.. why not book us?!  Or, if you just want to come and hear us play, check out the live public performances coming up this year. Details at: Green Chain Quartet 

The Green Chain Quartet - Short Cuts  (6 minutes, opens in YouTube)

The Green Chain Quartet - Long Cuts (19 minutes, opens in YouTube)


Live at the Arts Cafe!

New Winter Blues Course!

Note: the blues course has been popular so I'm going to keep it running throughout the Spring/early summer.  I'll update the text below to reflect the season very soon! - Dave
______________________________________________________________

While the weather's bad and the nights short.... there is no better time to hunker down and learn to play this soulful, creative and yet simple form of music. Following on from the success of my autumn and winter jazz courses, this blues course follows a similar format.

You can start as a complete beginner, or with a range of experience, the course will be tailored to you. The real focus is to improve your playing through a blues pathway while learning some great songs. Simple!

Learn to play the Blues through learning songs and instrumentals!


Together we'll sit down and tailor-make a 12 week course for you, to move you from where you are in your playing now, to where you'd like to be in 3 months time.

The 12 week course will contain between 6 and 8 tunes to learn, each one negotiated between us to work out which tunes will suit you best to develop your playing style. This could be electric guitar, acoustic guitar, slide guitar: covering Delta Blues, Chicago Blues, Country Blues, Folk Blues, it's your call! Each week you'll study your tunes, work through the chords, the tune, the rhythm and organise your approaches for playing solos, introductions, turnarounds, outros and endings.

The tunes we select together will include those played regularly at jams sessions, including classic tunes such as Baby Please Don't Go, Dust My Blues, Further On Up The Road, Killing Floor, Phone Booth, Stormy Monday, Spoonful, Roadhouse Blues, Sweet Home Chicago, Catfish Blues, and many more. At the end of the 12 weeks you'll know the tunes inside out, along with different rhythmic styles, and great licks and lines you can use to take solos on them.

The course includes a free 1 hour introductory lesson to evaluate your starting points in technique, and experience, so we can hit the ground running the day you start your first proper lesson.

Build good practice habits for great progress


An Introductory Lesson (free) - will cover an assessment of your current technique, level of understanding and preferred learning styles. Along with discussions on what targets we set, likely practice plans and useful listening list.


The course will fall broadly into 3 areas:

Foundations - Weeks 1 - 4: typically this will include: getting your ears in gear and fingers moving efficiently around the fretboard, so you play what you want to, and what you hear, not what your fingers are limited to.  Chord patterns for your tunes, the two main blues scales, double stops, blues fingerings, licks and phrasing along with the rhythm and vamping patterns that all apply to the tunes you have selected to work on. In short, building your musical scaffold. This stage also includes some visualisation and memory techniques for quicker learning of songs, licks, fingerings, rhythm patterns etc.


Build your hearing skills with musical games 


Moving on Weeks 5 - 8: Putting all the above information and resources into your playing.
Phrasing, fretboard mapping; getting a clear and simple understanding of how things really work on your fretboard. How to use the phrases you've learnt and make them your own. Fun music exercises and games that you can also use instantly into your playing. Building your rhythm and timing skills. Fun music hearing exercises - tap into the 'musical ear you didn't know you had' to make huge leaps in your playing. All of this while working on your next set of tunes.

Consolidating - Weeks 9 - 12: Building your blues vocabulary. Turning the scales, chord tones into definable licks and phrasing. Common licks used with different chord changes, how to adapt licks to fit lots of playing situations. Rhythm comping and filling out between phrases as part of your playing style. More on rhythm - getting in the groove with a great feel for the backbeat, swing, funk and gospel influences. And applying all of this to your final set of chosen tunes.

To get started simply use the contact form to the right of this page, or email me at dave@davebold.com.  Fees for the course are the same as my standard rates; info on the Lessons page.

Resolutions... Resolution!

Hello fellow musicians! New Year is here again... and bringing with it another year laced with potential.  2017... full of promise, expectation and ... New Year Resolutions. 

The best type of New Year resolution (if it's going to get results) is the type that sticks... and they usually stick when we apply a routine to whatever we are trying to get done. So if you're practicing an instrument, sort out what your goals are, the practice you need to do to get there; and most importantly, apply a routine.

In short:
1 - Identify your Target/Goal.
2 - Work out what you need to do to achieve it, including the amount of time.
3 - Apply your routine.
Playing an instrument takes time and routine

Most people are pretty good at working out the first two and lousy at sticking to the routine needed to achieve the goal. This is especially true of people learning an instrument.

The secret, if there is one, is to build the routine into your daily and weekly activity.  Set aside the time you need, diarise it, set reminders and treat it like anything else that's important, after all it's your goal. Achieve it and it really is like winning something!

Of course, if you're a musician, resolution also means the music has come to a close, the tension released, the work is done, the chord has been resolved, completed, at least in part.

And for some of us, especially after a busy Christmas period, where we've been winding up to the holiday period, it's a time to take a break, recharge the batteries, reflect and plan for the year ahead, identify new targets, set new goals, set out a plan ...

:-)

Whatever your goals are, I hope you have a good crack at achieving them. Happy New Year.

Winter Jazz Guitar Course

Want to learn to play jazz?  If you've been playing guitar for a year or so already and have built up the basics of playing the instrument playing blues, rock, classical or country it's not as hard as you might think. In fact a lot of what you already know can easily be adapted to play jazz on the guitar.

Learn to play Jazz by learning tunes and their chords!


Together we'll sit down and tailor-make a 12 week course for you, to move you from where you are in your playing now, to where you'd like to be in 3 months time.

The 12 week course will contain between 6 and 8 tunes to learn, each one negotiated between us to work out which tunes will suit you best to develop your playing style. Each week you'll study your tunes, work through the chord changes, the melody, the rhythm and your approaches for improvisation for best results. Some will be simple, others more challenging, all of them fun to play!

The tunes selected will include those played regularly at jams, i.e. jazz standards, blues, ballads, latin, bebop heads etc. At the end of the 12 weeks you'll know the 'heads' and the 'changes' to your chosen tunes, along with different 'comping' styles, and a range of strategies for improvising on them.

The lessons include a free 1 hour introductory lesson to evaluate your starting points in technique, hearing and musical understanding, so we can hit the ground running the day you start your first proper lesson.

Save yourself the agony.. Build good practice habits :-)


Intro Lesson - assessment of your current technique, level of understanding and preferred learning styles. Discussions on what targets we set, likely practice regime, useful text books/reference sources.

The course will fall broadly into 3 areas:

Foundations - Weeks 1 - 4: typically this will include: getting your ears in gear and fingers moving efficiently around the fretboard, so you play what you want to, not what your fingers are limited to. Chords and progressions, triads, scales and modes, arpeggios, double string studies, fingerings, note names, aural studies, and rhythmic and timing foundations, that apply to the tunes you have selected to work on. In short, building the musical scaffold that makes improvising possible. This stage also includes visualisation and memory techniques.

Tap into the musical ear you didn't know you had!




Moving on - Weeks 5 - 8: Putting all the above information and resources into your playing. Phrasing, fretboard mapping; getting a clear and simple understanding of how things really work everywhere on your fretboard. How to find the sweet notes and how to apply these to different jazz situations. Exercises and drills that are fun and you can put instantly into your playing. Building on your rhythm and timing skills. Hearing exercises - tap into the 'musical ear you didn't know you had' to make huge leaps in your playing. All of this while working on your next set of tunes.

Consolidating - Weeks 9 - 12: Building vocabulary. Turning scales, triads and arpeggios into licks and phrasing. Common licks used with different chord changes, how to adapt licks to fit lots of playing situations. Filling out between phrases as part of your comping style. More on rhythm - swing, bebop, hard bop, cool, funk and latin styles. Get in the groove with other time signatures - 6/8, 6/4, 12/8, 5/4, 7/8. And applying all of this to your final set of chosen tunes.

Get a clear and simple understanding how music really works..


To book your free Introductory lesson, use the contact form to the right of this page, or email me at dave@davebold.com. Fees for the course are the same as my standard rates; info on the Lessons page.

Winter RGT Exams

Reminder to all students that the deadline for UK entries for this coming Winter 2016 RGT exams is Saturday 1st October.  Exam dates still to be confirmed, but they usually occur around late November/early December.


Improve your practice - make a list!

It is without doubt the biggest area that guitar students struggle with... making time to practice, and when they pick up their guitar, what to practice first.

It may seem obvious but the best way is to make a list. Keep it simple, just 5 things, in order of priority, and don't do other things on the list until the first priority item is done. When you've finished practicing immediately write out your list for your next lesson.

A bit like this article in fact, from original productivity consultant Ivy Ledbetter Lee in 1900:

100 year old to-do list hack that works like a charm


Gigs this weekend: Road Runners Return! Green Chain Qt - Park tour rolls on!

I'm out on two 'open to the public' gigs this weekend, would be fabulous to see you at either, hope you can make it!

Saturday 20th August: Return of the fabulous Gordon Mark Webber's Road Runners, appearing at The White Swan in Charlton from 8pm. Classic soul, disco and funk featuring the vocals of Gordon Webber and Francesca Payne, and the RR Horns featuring Frank Mead on sax and Toby Simmons on trumpet. Full address: The White Swan, 22 The Village, Charlton SE7 8UD

The GMW Road Runners in full swing


Sunday 21st August: Jimmy Smith/Wes Montgomery revivalists The Green Chain Quartet will be appearing at The Bandstand in picturesque Golders Green Park, Hampstead from 3-5pm. Expect funky guitar and organ tunes from the classic cool jazz era.  Loads of stuff for the kids to do in the park if jazz isn't their thing  (hoping it stays dry!).  Full address: Golders Hill Park, West Heath Ave, London NW11 7QP 

Green Chain's John Gittos


The Cycle of Fifths... Online and interactive!

Most of my students will know the importance of the Cycle of Fifths several lessons into their guitar studies with me.

Its great for practicing the guitar, practicing improvisation, composing/songwriting and understanding how keys, modes, chords and their progressions work. If you write your own songs you'll find the Cycle of Fifths 'wheel' a very useful thing indeed :-)

Now software developer, Rand Scullard, has come up with a truly interactive online version of this important music tool and you can find a free copy here: Rand Scullard - Cycle of Fifths - complete with a detailed 'User Guide'.

Thanks to Carlos at Schwilly Family Musicians for sharing this find.