Paul Gilbert: metalsucks interview

When I was six, I took guitar lessons. They were so boring that I quit guitar. I’m on this mission to have that happen as little as possible. I think I have some pent-up anger for that teacher. The guy basically told me to go buy a Mel Bay book so we could go through it. Oh and we started with sight-reading, which is like teaching an infant English starting with the alphabet, instead of sounding it out. Nobody learns to read before learning how to speak. To me, music is very similar to language. To teach reading first, it’s just painful. Some people have the stamina, or have been forced by their parents, so they persevere. I’m a supporter of the ear-player, and learning to read notes later. Because it’s a painful starting point.

Just quitting the instrument that I love so much, only to pick up where I left off years later, makes me try to understand the motivational part of teaching. It’s not just giving information, it’s a matter of monitoring the student to really make sure that they’re excited about the material. Otherwise, it’s useless.
full interview