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For Every Level of Player

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Over 40 Years Of Experience

Now Providing All Online Lessons. Take Your Lessons Anywhere! 

Guitar lessons through Zoom allow you to learn virtually anywhere: at home, on the road, and even while on vacation.

Zoom Lesson Information
Hillman Guitar Instruction

Guitar lessons that focus on each individual students needs.

The most important thing to realize is that you already have a good understanding of music built into you and that all you need to fulfill your musical aspirations is a little dedication and some help from the right teacher. I’d like to be that teacher. I have designed a comfortable, low-stress, fun way for you to learn how to play the guitar, and I invite you to give yourself the chance to become the musical being you have always dreamed of.

Learn more about my lesson pricing, or check out equipment recommendations on the FAQ page.

Key Learnings

- Proper Playing Technique
- Fundamental Exercises
- Intro to Music Theory

Get Started. Get Playing.

Playing the guitar isn’t easy. If it were, it wouldn’t seem so cool and mysterious, everybody would be doing it, and of course, I’d be out of a job. But it’s not impossible either, and I have learned that anyone can learn to play if they have the right help and apply themselves. A big part of the trick is to understand that we all come to the guitar with “bad habits” before we even begin. The way our hands operate for almost all of our everyday tasks is different from the way they need to operate to play the guitar. I can help you overcome this.

Fundamental exercises and proper technique, while not incredibly exciting, can get one on the right path and make the journey to guitar proficiency shorter and more fun. I have found that this, coupled with students learning the songs of their choice, to be a very satisfying and effective method of learning how to play. A little hard work focusing on the basic skills will get you playing some of your favorite songs in no time.

I also like to throw in a little music theory at the beginning. Having a basic understanding of how songs and music work make the whole endeavor that much more enjoyable. In fact, because music is a simple and elegant system based on how the world of sound vibrates around us, we as humans already have an innate knowledge of its rules. Music without lyrics is pure emotion, and it’s fairly simple to put some labels on those vague feelings and create order out of what you are hearing.

More On Beginner Lessons
Key Learnings

- Review of Proper Techniques
- Continued Engagement
- Inspiring Perspective

Advance Your Skills.

One of my favorite things to do is help those players who have been playing for a while, but have found themselves in a rut or at a dead end. I can quickly assess where you are, help you dispense with any bad habits you may have picked up along the way, and get you pointed in the right direction, achieving the goals you have always aspired to.

The art of the guitar solo is akin to speaking another language. I can get you past just being able to order coffee and asking directions to the museum and on the way to telling amazing heartfelt stories. Music is all about perspective. There are many ways to describe and label things that happen in music. I can help you find the perspective that works for you so you can think less about the technical aspects of what you are playing, and enable you to focus on moving your listeners with meaningful emotional content.

While there are no shortcuts to guitar proficiency (and really anything in life), having the proper insights into WHY it is difficult and WHY it is frustrating can drastically shorten the time it takes to be able to play the guitar in the fashion that you want. I like to say that music is a simple and elegant system. It’s important to trust the deep, natural, instinctual understanding of music theory that all humans possess.

More On Intermediate Guitar Lessons
Key Learnings

- Confirmation of Concepts
- Understanding Emotion
- Achieving Personal Goals

Conquer the Technical.

You’ve been playing for a long time. Maybe you’ve even been touring and putting out records. But some things just seem out of your reach. Or maybe you are missing the one concept that will tie all of your knowledge together. I can help you, probably in just a few lessons. I like to say that music is a simple and elegant system. I love to show accomplished players how to wrap their heads around that concept so they can conquer the technical/mental and focus on the spiritual, emotional significance of their music. Let’s talk on the phone and find out where you can take your playing.

More On Advanced Guitar Lessons
Key Learnings

- Elements of Great Songs
- Getting Inspired
- Song Assessments

Inspired by Songs You Love

Songwriting is of my favorite things, and favorite things to teach. I have a method for understanding good songwriting. I put songs I’ve heard into 3 categories: 1. That’s horrible and I never want to hear it again. 2. That’s pretty good. and 3. Damn! I wish I would have wrote that! I keep a list of category 3 songs and spend time tearing them apart to understand why they move me so. Then I try to find ways to reuse, recycle, borrow, and steal those elements. Yes, that’s right! John Lennon, when asked about his songwriting said “I’m the greatest thief of all time. I’ve just never been caught!” I can show you how to do this as well.

For the most part, music is a simple and elegant system. A big part of good songwriting is trusting the deep, natural, instinctual understanding of music theory that all humans possess.

More On Songwriting
Key Learnings

- Songwriting
- Band Dynamics
- Live Performance

Master the Jam Session.

Improvising is the art of making up music as you go, right there on the spot. It’s not as hard as you think, and it’s definitely one of my favorite activities and things to teach. I have spent many years in an improv band with good friends. We have hundreds of hours of recorded material. Some of it is great. Most of it is so so. Some of it is absolutely horrible. But you get better at it the more you do it, and one of the greatest joys for a musician can be to fall into a sweet improvisational jam.

For the most part, music is a simple and elegant system. A big part of good improvisation is trusting the deep, natural, instinctual understanding of music theory that all humans possess.

More On Guitar Improvisation
Key Learnings

- Singing
- Recording & Sound Engineering
- Live Performance
- Just About Anything Guitar-Related

Tell Me What You Want to Learn.

I can help you with just about anything guitar-related. Finger picking, alternate tunings, slide guitar, you name it. I also have extensive experience in the following subjects and can offer advice on: singing, recording, sound engineering, live performance, guitar amplifiers and effects, band dynamics, band marketing and booking.

More On Complete Lessons


I was searching for a hard-to-find baritone ukulele instructor and David graciously agreed to teach me the basics and learn the instrument along with me. Since the baritone uke is strung like a guitar and I’m a complete beginner who needs a lot of background information and also want to learn music theory, the arrangement is perfect. Every time I leave a lesson I’m energized and enthusiastic to keep playing!

Elizabeth A.

I’m the first to admit, I have trouble practicing every week – David always works with whatever I’ve got to bring to the table, whether I made progress on my own that week or not. I started almost brand new to the guitar, and over the course of 6 months David’s helped me build a song repertoire of both simple and challenging songs that I can play along with – mostly my suggestions of songs I want to learn. His knowledge of guitar techniques and music theory is great (I’ve asked about both during lessons and was impressed by the responses), and I always walk away ready to work on something. I highly recommend lessons with David!

Alaina D.

My experiences have traditionally proved that those who instruct rarely have an effective and efficient way for teaching new students. Fortunately for me and all of David’s other students, this is not the case. I walked into David’s studio having never picked up the guitar (with the exception of Guitar Hero) and with little to no experience in music. Before taking lessons from David, I would have never imagined being where I am today without this instruction.

Matthew G.

David is a calm, understanding teacher who reinforces practice positively and teaches kids how to connect with and create their own music in addition to teaching traditional methods. My child has never been bored and has learned the art of improvisation along with sight reading.

Meg V.

David is an exceptional musician and a great teacher. He tailors the lessons to fit your needs and works hard to find out what teaching methods works best for you.

Larry G.
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