Guitar Lessons Boulder CO

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Guitar Lessons Boulder CO

Hi folks,

Im Lee Johnson, owner and instructor at Boulder Guitar Studio (BGS). I have been teaching FT since I opened in 2001. I teach Guitar Lessons in Boulder CO. In addition I teach bass guitar lessons, ukulele lessons, slide guitar lessons, dobro lessons, lap steel guitar lessons, harmonica lessons and voice lessons. I also teach music theory, songwriting and home recording.


Background and Education:

Prior to opening Boulder Guitar Studio, I was a FT instructor at Golden Music Center. There I averaged 60 students a week for 5-6 yrs. Before that, I taught briefly at Guitars Etc in Longmont, as well as Wenzel Music in Evergreen and various other locations PT. I received a BA in Environmental Sciences at CU Boulder from 1987-1991. Then I went to UCD Denver for a BA in Music and Sound Technology 1996.


Performance Experience:

Currently I am a multi award winning songwriter with songs placed in film tv and with major label publishers in Nashville. Also, I play tons of private events, and public venues locally, regionally and nationally as a solo singer/songwriter. Formerly, I have been in national touring bands, and opened for top national acts. These include Peter Rowan, Tony Rice, Leftover Salmon, String Cheese Incident, Derek Trucks, Yonder Mnt String Band, Moe, John Cowan, and many more!


Teaching Approach:

In my 20+ years of teaching, I have learned a lot! My programs are customized to suit each individuals unique needs, goals, ability, favorite songs and styles, and more! I have developed a unique and comprehensive style of teaching, geared towards creating the important balance between 2 important components of a solid lesson program.


2 Important Components:

Component 1:  includes structured technique building, learning your way around the guitar neck, knowledge of counting, timing and strum or picking patterns, music theory and much more. This is all geared towards component 2.

Component 2: includes learning YOUR favorite songs and styles!

The important connection between how component 1  applies to component 2 is what sets this program apart! Don’t waste time with “one size fits all” approaches. Get a custom lesson program at Boulder Guitar Studio.

Online Lessons Are Not Enough:

Don’t waste time trying to learn from video series, or youtube. These are mostly incorrect representations of the actual song and how it’s REALLY played. I can save you tons of time by clearly identifying your component 1 needs and how these will apply to your component 2 goals! I will be posting more videos soon at our youtube channel. Right now on youtube, we have an introductory 1st lesson sample, a demonstration on timing and counting, and a couple of my students past recitals. Some of these kids stayed with me from elementary school, into HS and have now graduated.


Life Skills:

It’s great to see students enjoy music, and the life skills it teaches us. Through music we gain confidence, and learn important techniques. Additionally, we earn our progress with disciplined practicing and commitment. These are skills that seem to be going away today. Everyone thinks they can learn an instrument by watching youtube or downloading TABs. Although the internet is a valuable resource we suggest using it as a supplement only. I reference it myself sometimes, but it is NOT the same thing as really learning to play! Learning to play a song from TAB is like a parrot learning to talk. Does it know what it is saying, or did it simply mimick and memorize?


My Lesson Program:

In my lesson program, you will not only learn how to play YOUR favorite songs, you will learn what makes them work and why. First, we start with the chord progression, and the strum pattern. Next, we break down strum or picking patterns beat by beat so you can count and identify what is happening for each beat. Also, I can even record versions for you at slower speeds with a metronome, for practice, to build solid technique first, and then speed up as you get the hang of it.

The metronome teaches us 2 main things:

1. how to keep a steady beat

2. how to keep track of progress by setting goals with a song or lick that is too fast to play up to speed initially. By having a version recorded slower, you can get the fundamentals correct, and then work towards getting up to speed incrementally. This is much more effective than other approaches.


Practical Music Theory:

You will learn what key the song is in, and how the chords in the key relate to each other numerically. There are many benefits to this. One is that it makes changing the key a no brainer, and if your chord chart is written numerically you don’t need a new chart. Another is so to understand the role of each chord numerically so you learn the relationships, which apply to all keys. That way, what you learn in one song, can translate into other songs.


Using Tablature:

I sometimes use TAB or notation to write things out for you when necessary. I’ll show you how TAB is written correctly rather than what you find on the internet, and I also teach you the correct chords and scales and why they fit together. When you learn exclusively from TAB you learn which fret on which string to play. The numbers say 2 4 5 2 4 2 4 2 3 5 etc…You don’t learn that you’re in a Bm Scale, which is the relative minor of the key of D, the key the song is in. Also you don’t learn that all those juicy minor pentatonic licks you learned can now apply! You simply need to know the theory behind how to make it work.


I can Save You Time:

I can save you hours of wasted time and $ because you get twice as much bang for your buck out of each lick you learn. This is just ONE example!!! You can also learn what kinds of chord progressions dictate what types of scales or modes and why. Theory is broken down into easy to follow items, and most importantly so you understand how and why you need to know it! Theory does no good if you aren’t shown how it applies in YOUR favorite songs! Songs in various time signatures require you to be able to count. Inability to do so will hold you back.



Let me create a custom program to suit YOUR needs, your favorite songs and styles, YOUR goals and ability! Check out reviews we have on Yelp, Google, and Facebook. Additionally, I offer lessons on skype. I can email docs for each lesson in real time, you must have hi speed connection. However I highly recommend in person lessons whenever possible. Something as simple as a slight hand adjustment can save you valuable time! This prevents practicing the wrong way and developing bad habits that are hard to undo later.

Get in a custom program at Boulder Guitar Studio!!! Email for scheduling

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