Richards Guitar Studio

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RGS Podcast Episode 5 – Hornets in the Greenhouse

RGS Podcast Episode 5 – Hornets in the Greenhouse: Richards Rock Academy Adult Band

Watch a clip of Hornets in the Greenhouse playing Neil Young Rockin’ in the Free World!!!

Episode #5: RRA Adult Band – Hornets in the Greenhouse. Guitar/Vocals Nate Ferro and Drums/Vocals Chris John (also an RGS/RRA parent of 2 amazing young musicians) join Colin Ainsworth to talk music. 3:03 – Introductions from Chris John and Nate Ferro, their paths from childhood housecall piano lessons and elementary school bands to RGS 6:15 – Hornets in the Greenhouse lineups and the best venues they’ve played at, bars changing names more than the band, and how to arrive at a set list 9:21 – Influences for Nate and Chris, the need for RGS to issue an official position on Dave vs. Sammy for Van Halen (no, Gary Cherone is not an option); the downfall of diverse sounds in Top 40 radio; and no love for disco or Barry Manilow 18:30 – Not letting rock become a dead language, feeling emotion from performers, how no true rock band “sounds better in the studio,” and Hornets in the Greenhouse doing their part to helping rock continue – though not inspiring Greta Van Fleet, and private lessons holding you accountable and showing that in the band 28:11 – RRA bands pushing themselves, playing music bringing people down to earth, having a creative outlet away from work and other outlets at RGS, remembering to “respect the business” in music performance and education, and playing music becomes a weekly therapy session 36:14 – Bonus content starts with volume drop, returns at 37:20, the challenges of making a standalone Hulk movie, “it was a typical CBS drama with a giant green guy in it,” 10-year-olds watching Bette Davis movies and NASCAR and the end of attention spans, the inconsistency of the recent Batman franchise and the high quality of ‘60s Batman villains (Frank Gorshin appearance on “The Dean Martin Show” featuring the Riddler novelty song at )

Rock Band Camp Now Open for Summer 2017!

Rock Band Camp Summer Enrollment

You can now enroll for Summer 2017 Rock Band Camp! All of the information is on the Rock Band Summer Camp page. Serving Delaware County and the Tri-State area.

Rock Band Camp

Rock Band Camp

Rock Band Summer Camp with Richards Guitar Studio and Richards Rock Academy is held at ValleyPoint Church in Glen Mills, PA. The facility has a stage, state of the art PA system, offices for private lessons, and a kitchen / lounge area. Students learn songs, technique, instrument repair, songwriting, improvising, audio equipment setup and use, and much more.

Last year’s camp was a big success, and the result was a concert performance by the student band “City Witch” of Running Down A Dream by Tom Petty, Buddy Holly by Weezer, I Love Rock and Roll by Joan Jett, an original song by the band, and a killer blues jam!

For full information, go to the camp page here.

The Contortionist Guitarist Cameron Maynard Guitar Clinic at RGS

The Contortionist Guitarist Cameron Maynard at RGS!

We are proud and excited to announce The Contortionist guitarist Cameron Maynard will teach a guitar clinic at Richards Guitar Studio in Aston on Saturday, October 8 from 12-2pm. Cameron is a world-touring guitar master and will demonstrate techniques and guitar approaches in progressive music.

Tickets available here

Check out this AMAZING song by The Contortionist:

We strive to offer the best classes, clinics, lessons, and opportunities for our students, whether music theory, guitar, bass, drums, piano, or voice. Richards Guitar Studio teacher Pete Napper was able to communicate with, and arrange for Cameron Maynard to come to RGS prior to their show October 8 in Philadelphia. Thanks Pete!

– Nate Richards, Owner

Adele Hello Easy Guitar Chord Tutorial

So I wanted to do an Adele Hello easy guitar chord tutorial and……

OK OK OK I know I know I know – this is not like me to do this.  BUT – I am always experimenting and doing my best to keep an open mind. This is a great beginner chord song, and I’ve worked it out to avoid bar chords – even Bm! But the story has just begun.

The original song has no guitar anyway – it’s a piano.  So, I thought, “The song received 245,000,000 in about 2 weeks – I HAVE to do a lesson on this – it’s just too popular to sit this one out.”  As you know, I was about a year late to the game with the Shut Up and Dance definitive guitar lesson and guitar tab – the absolute best, highest quality, supreme and unparalleled, extraordinarily superb, phenomenal and divine transcription and guitar tutorial known to human kind. So, for this one, I figured I would keep it simple. Will the ultimate Hello transcription and guitar tutorial surface on this blog? I think it’s too early to tell. But as for right now, in this moment, the way things are…..I’m not sure the world is ready for another Shut Up and Dance – level tutorial.  Its. just. too. soon.

So, now the question remains – will RGS students, parents, teachers, and fans request, heck – DEMAND – a follow-up to Shut Up and Dance in the pop genre, from Nate Richards?  Will Nate rise to the challenge? Or will he become disillusioned altogether with the pop genre, abandon the limelight of easy guitar chord version YouTube tutorials, and bore himself into the dark, gloomy shadows of the authentic and challenging guitar tutorials and tabs, only to wither away in loneliness, shunned by the hordes of viewers playing acoustic guitars in their unwashed PJ’s and Ugg slippers?

Only time will tell…


Drill #48 – Alternate Picking Exercise


Nate from Richards Guitar Studio and Richards Rock Academy shows you a great alternate picking exercise on guitar that helps increase speed, endurance, and synchronization between the picking and frethand fingers.

When practicing an alternate picking exercise on guitar, you want to start slowly, playing evenly and controlled, and only begin increasing speed once you  have committed the exercise to muscle memory / reflex in the hands. Use a metronome to systematically increase speed gradually over time. When practicing this alternate picking exercise with a metronome, play eighth notes (2 notes per beat, “1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +” using down-updown-up etc picking).

Why do drills such as these? Don’t they seem like a waste of time? On an almost daily basis, I see YouTube videos of great guitarists sharing their warm-up drills and exercises, scales, arpeggios, stretches, etc. Recently, off the top of my head, some of those artists include Alexi Laiho, Jeff Loomis, John Petrucci, Joe Satriani, and Steve Vai. I’m constantly on YouTube for my lessons so I get to see many of these videos pop up in my recommendations. If warm-ups, drills, exercises, etc are worth the time of such great guitarists, than they are certainly worth our time and attention.

  1.  Practice with a metronome. Jeff Loomis recommends it, so….yeah….do it.
  2. Be patient. Speed takes time. I’m currently trying to increase my tremolo picking speed, and I’m telling you it is frustrating sometimes. I know what I want to do, I know the goals and techniques I’m striving to perfect, but my hands simply won’t do it – yet. I know I’ll get there, and although it isn’t happening right away I know I’ll wake up one day and BOOM my tremolo picking will be faster than ever. It’s sort of like diet and exercise – you do it and your body will respond. It’s inevitable.
  3. Stop practicing the exercise, then revisit. Once you’ve gone as far as you can and hit a wall, move to doing other exercises for a month or two, then come back to this one. You’ll find that doing a 2nd time around can actually push your speed farther. Don’t expect to get all the way to 100% in the first season of practice. It takes revisiting.

Richards Guitar Studio and Richards Rock Academy offers professional guitar lessons, bass lessons, drum lessons, guitar teacher training, and rock band rock school in Aston, PA. Serving Ridley Park Swarthmore, Garnet Valley, Wallingford, and Delaware County, PA.

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