D'arcy Wickham School of Guitar

Courses are available in Beginner, Rock & Blues, Folk & Fingerstyle, Country & Bluegrass, Bass, Ukulele, and more!

D’Arcy Wickham Studios is now accepting students. Get results with a fun and well-organized curriculum. With subway access and guitar supplied, “learning to teach yourself guitar” has never been easier.

Beginner Guitar Course

Introduction

This is a short course (5-10 weeks) intended to build good attitudes, study skills, practical and theoretical skills and to prepare a student for specializing in a future course in the style of guitar of their own choosing.

Topics

  • Basic guitar chords, how to get clear sounds and how to practice them.
  • How to string and tune the guitar.
  • Folk-Country strums in 4/4 and 3/4 time.
  • Basic Theory
    • The notes of the guitar fingerboard (Chromatic Scales)
    • Key Signatures
  • Reading Music
    • The notes in the 1st position
    • Tied notes
    • Rests
    • Dotted notes
    • Sharps & flats
    • Swing rhythm
  • How to change chords without stopping
  • Sample tunes in the Beginner Course
    • Champagne Super Nova (Oasis)
    • Don’t Look Back in Anger (Oasis)
    • Wonderwal (Oasis)
    • Lay Down Sally (Eric Clapton)
    • Wonderful Tonite (Eric Clapton)
    • Hotel California (The Eagles)
    • Take it to the Limit (The Eagles)
    • Dumb (Nirvana)
    • Jesus Don’t Want Me (Nirvana)
    • No Rain (Blind Melon)
    • Harvest (Neil Young)
    • Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door (Bob Dylan)
    • If I Had A Million Dollars (Barenaked Ladies)
    • Elderly Woman (Pearl Jam)
    • Runaway Train (Soul Asylum)
    • Mr. Jones (Counting Crows)
    • Wheat Kings (Tragically Hip)
    • Let it Be (Beatles)
    • Eight Days A Week (Beatles)
    • Edmund Fitzgerald (Gordon Lightfoot)
    • Tonite, Tonite (Smashing Pumpkins)
    • Give Me One Reason (Tracy Chapman)
    • Wonderin’ Where The Lions Are (Bruce Cockburn)

Rock and Blues Guitar Course

This course is divided into 3 basic areas

Techniques:

  • Pick grip and tone
  • Accenting
  • Blocking
  • Leaving out 1/8 notes
  • Pushing and anticipating
  • Down stroking
  •  Left hand and right hand mutes
  • Sixteenth note rhythms
  • Reggae Rhythms
  • Boogie beats, shuffles, roots blues and rock grooves
  • Up cuts
  • Release Mutes
  • Syncopation

    Songs taught in the Rhythm Guitar section include:

Ahead By A Century (Tragically Hip)
Boots Or Hearts (Tragically Hip)
Life By The Drop (Stevie Ray Vaughan)
All Apologies (Nirvana)
Come As You Are (Nirvana)
Lithium (Nirvana)
Big Gun (AC-DC)
Blue Sky (Allman Brothers)
Brown Sugar (Rolling Stones)
Bullet With Butterfly Wings (Smashing Pumpkins)
Tonight Tonight (Smashing Pumpkins)
Today (Smashing Pumpkins)
Cinnamon Girl (Neil Young)
Harvest Moon (Neil Young)
Day Tripper (Beatles)
Every Breath You Take (Police)
Give A Little Bit (Supertramp)
Give Me One Reason (Tracy Chapman
Glycerine (Bush)
Hey Joe (Jimmi Hendrix)
Wild Thing (Jimmi Hendrix)
Horse With No Name (America)
House Of Dreams (Blue Rodeo)
Hurt So Good (John Mellencamp)
I’m Tore Down (Eric Clapton)
Lay Down Sally (Eric Clapton)
Ice Cream (Sarah McLaughlan)
Lightning Crashes (Live)
Learning To Fly (Tom Petty)
Mary Jane’s Last Dance (Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers)
Moondance (Van Morrison)
Pinball Wizard (The Who)
Satisfaction (Rolling Stones)
Shade (Silverchair)
Sweet Home Alabama (Lynyrd Skynyrd)
Sulk (Radio Head)
Nice Dream (Radiohead)
Sunshine Of Your Love (Cream)
Tangerine (Led Zeppelin)
Wooden Ships (Crosby, Stills & Nash)
Wish You Were Here (Pink Floyd)

2. Theory, Chording & Notation

Theory

  • Basic Chromatic scales on each string
  • Keys defined and explained
  • Transposition of basic chord progression
  • Finding notes on the guitar
  • Tuning the guitar
  • Chord building
  • Chord substitutions and extensions
  • Relative keys
  • Cycle the 5th’s and chord cycles
  • Simple Diatonic chord progressions and chord functions
  • Minor key Diatonic Triads
  • Harmonizing a melody with chords

Chording

  • Simple open string chords
  • 5 kinds of Bar chords
  • The Form Chord System
  • The Triad System (Johnny Smith)
    5. Diminished chords
  • Three string Jazz rhythm chords

Songs taught in the Chording section include a variety of Blues and jazz standards such as:

Georgia
Everybody’s Talkin’
Barrelhouse
Stormy Monday
This Masquerade
Don’t Get Around Much Anymore
Satin Doll
Black Orpheus …and many more

Music Reading and Notation

Exercises for learning to read are taught as well as the following

  • Reading Rhythm Charts
  • Flats and Sharps
  • Grace Notes
  • Quarter Note Triplets
  •  Slurs
  • Note Values, Tied and Dotted Notes, Time Signatures
  • Writing Music

3. Scales & Improvisation

This section involves theory and technique and the use of prerecorded rhythm tracks (guitar and drums)
for home study:

  • The 3 note per string concept for scales
  • Arpeggios
  • Modes and how to use them…sample progressions
  • Intervals and how to use them
  • Major and Minor (Blues) Pentatonic scales
  • Natural, Melodic and Harmonic Minor Scales
  • Analyzing chord progressions and tunes for key areas
  • Improvisational techniques (Hammers, Pulls, Slides, Bends, Harmonics, Vibrato)
  • Connecting scales
  • Stacked Note Scales
  • Position playing, phrasing, vintage 50’s licksAnd much more…The improvisation section also involves the learning of several prepared solos and the following lead solos:
Hotel California (Eagles)
Purple Haze (Jimi Hendrix)
Money for Nothing (Dire Straits)
Something in the Way She Moves (Beatles)
Reeling in the Years (Steely Dan)
Keys to the Highway (Eric Clapton)
Sultans of Swing (Dire Straits)
Memphis
Roll Over Beethoven (Chuck Berry)
Sweet Home Alabama (Lynyrd Skynyrd)
Johnny B. Goode (Chuck Berry)
Take It Easy (Eagles)
Wish You Were Here (Pink Floyd)

Fingerstyle and Folk Guitar Course

Prerequisite

The only prerequisite for this course is a knowledge of basic folk chords and the ability to change chords without gaps. This course is divided into 5 basic sections:

1. Fingerstyle Accompaniment – Pattern Picking System
2. Delta and Country Blues Styles
3. Contemporary Music Repertoire
4. Ragtime, Classical and Gospel Arrangements
5. Basic Theory, Theory, Bar Chords and Scales

Section 1 – Fingerstyle Accompaniment

Pattern Picking System:

  • hand position
  • combination patterns
  • roll patterns and combinations
  • leaving out beat
  • pinch patterns
  • improvising patterns
  • heel damping
  • miscellaneous patterns
  • system of bass notes
  • simple patterns

Section 2 – Delta & Country Style Blues

Delta Style Blues:

  • the 12 bar blues
  • blues grooves
Kind Hearted Woman (Robert Johnson)
32-30 (Robert Johnson)
Sweet Home Chicago (Robert Johnson)
Keys to the Highway & Solo (D’Arcy Wickham)
Crazy Mama & Solo (J.J. Cale)
Delta Blues Stealing & Solo (D’Arcy Wickham)
Spooky blues (D’Arcy Wickham)
Composite Blues (D’Arcy Wickham)
Before You Accuse Me & Solo (Eric Clapton)
Blues is Just a Bad Dream (James Taylor)
Steamroller Blues (James Taylor)
Suzie Q. (C.C.R.)
Life by the Drop (Stevie Ray Vaughan)
Doc’s Guitar (Doc Watson)
Sittin’ on Top of the World (Doc Watson)
Deep River Blues (Doc Watson)
Windy & Warm (Doc Watson)
Cocaine (Rev. Gary Davis)
Candyman (Mississippi John Hurt)
Two-Step Candyman (Rev. Gary Davis)
Satisfied & Tickled Too (Taj Mahal)
Fisherman (Leo Kottke)
Last Steam Engine Train (Leo Kottke)
Hesitation Blues (Jorma Cauconen)
Sugar Babe (Mance Lipscomb)
Candyman (Rev. Gary Davis)
My Creole Belle (Mississippi John Hurt)
Make me a Pallet (Mississippi John Hurt)
Four & Twenty & Solo (Steve Stills)
Cannonball Rag (Merle Travis)

Section 3 – Contemporary Music, Transcriptions & Arrangements

Beginner Pieces:

* All My Lovin’ (Beatles)
* Help (Beatles)
* Feelin’ Groovy (Paul Simon)
* Homeward Bound (Paul Simon)
* Scarborough Fair (Paul Simon)
* Sounds of Silence (Paul Simon)
* Love Song (Elton John)
* Puff (Peter, Paul & Mary)
* 500 Miles (Peter, Paul & Mary)
* Freight Train (Elizabeth Cotton)
* Luka (Suzanne Vega)
* Helplessly Hoping (C.S. &N.)
* Piano Man (Billy Joel)
* Stack-o-Lee (Traditional)
* The Rose (Bette Midler)
* Dust in the Wind (Kansas)Various Fingerstyle Artists:
* All the Things I Wasn’t (The Grapes of Wrath)
* Green Eyes (Garnet Rodgers)
* I Hope That I Don’t Fall in Love with You (Tom Waits)
* Never Goin’ Back Again (Lindsay Buckingham)
* Time in a Bottle (Jim Croce)
* Operator (Jim Croce)
* Longer (Dan Fogelberg)
* Leader of the Band (Dan Fogelberg)
* More Than Words (Extreme)
* Needle of Death (Bert Jansch)
* Running From Home (Bert Jansch)
* God Bless the Child (Dave Van Ronk)
* Last thing on My Mind (Tom Paxton)
* Lockeeper (Stan Rodgers)
* Three Fishers (Stan Rodgers)
* Forty Five Years (Stan Rodgers)
* House of Orange (Stan Rodgers)
* 1952 Vincent Black Lightning (Richard Thompson)
* Yankee Lady (Jesse Winchester)
* Shotgun Down the Avalanche (Shawn Colvin)
* I’ll See You in my Dreams (Mark Knofler/Chet Atkins)
* Watershed (Indigo Girls)
* Angie (Davey Graham)
* Bad Moon Risin’ (C.C.R.)
* Don’t Let the Sun Catch you Cryin’ (Jerry Marsden)
* Devoted to You (Everly Bros.)
* Let it Be Me (Everly Bros.)
* All I Have to Do is Dream (Everly Bros.)
* Andecy (Andrew York)
* Both Sides Now (Joni Mitchell)
* Digitalia (Preston Reed)
* If I were a Carpenter (Tim Hardin)
* Johnny’s Garden (Stephen Stills)
* See the Changes (Stephen Stills)
* Song for Adam (Jackson Browne)
* The Road (Jackson Browne)
* The Handing Down (Edward Gerhardt)
* Moonshadow (Cat Stevens)
* Purple Haze (Jimi Hendrix)
* Streets of London (Ralph McTell)
* Guinnevere (David Crosby)
* Money for Nothin’ (Dire Straits)
* Why Worry (Dire Straits)
* Superman Song (Crash Test Dummies)
* Lay Down Sally (Eric Clapton)
* Tears in Heaven (Eric Clapton)
* Wedding Song (Paul Stookey)
* As Tears Go By (Rolling Stones)
* St.Patrick’s Breastplate (Stephen Fearing)
* Vincent (Don McLean)
* Solsbury Hill (Peter Gabriel)
* All of Me (Willie Nelson)
* Cat’s in the Cradle (Harry Chapin)
* Faithless Love (Linda Ronstadt)
* Song for George (Eric Johnson)
* Daniel (Elton John)
* Needle & Damage Done (Neil Young)
* Hotel California (Eagles)

 

The Music of Leo Kottke…
* William Powell
* Trout Toward Noon
* Theme from Rick &Bob Report
* Times Twelve
* Little Beaver
* First to Go
* Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring
* Little Martha
* Mona Ray
The Music of James Taylor…
* Blossom
* Copperline
* Fire and Rain
* Handyman
* Song for You So Far Away
* Only One
* Sweet Baby James
* Wanderin’
* You Can Close Your Eyes

 

The Music of D’Arcy Wickham…
* New England Rag
* Portage
* Waterfall
* Underway
* Hooked on You
* Natasha
* Slipstream
* Underway
* First Light
The Music of Michael Hedges…
* The Naked Stalk
* Rickover’s Dream
* Lenono
* Layover
* Breakfast in the Field

 

The Music of Bruce Cockburn…
(Vocal pieces)
* Lovers in a Dangerous Time
* Tokyo
* Rocket Launcher & Solo
* Don’t Feel Your Touch
* Together Alone & Solo
* Dust & Diesel
* Keep it Open
* Nicaragua
* Barrelhouse & Solo
* You Point to the Sky & Solo
* Rumours of Glory
* Fascist Architecture
* Rainfall & Solo
* Creation Dream & SoloGuitar solos
* Islands in a Black Sky
* Deer Dancing
* Train in the Rain
* Skylarking
* Water into Wine
* All selections from “All the Diamonds”
The Music of The Beatles…
* Blackbird
* Dear Prudence
* Eleanor Rigby
* Here There and Everywhere
* Here Comes the Sun
* I’ll Get You
* If I Fell
* Imagine
* In My Life
* I’ve Just Seen a Face
* Julia
* Michelle
* Mother Nature’s Son
* While My Guitar Gently Weeps
* We Can Work it Out
* Yesterday

 

The Music of Don Ross…
* First Ride
* Silversmith
* Midnight March
The Music of Jason Fowler…
* Simple Chains
* Hunger of the Clock
* Hector the Inspector

Country and Bluegrass Guitar Course

Introduction

This is a short course (5-10 weeks) intended to build good attitudes, study skills, practical and theoretical skills and to prepare a student for specializing in a future course in the style of guitar of their own choosing.

Topics

  • Basic guitar chords, how to get clear sounds and how to practice them.
  • How to string and tune the guitar.
  • Folk-Country strums in 4/4 and 3/4 time.
  • Basic Theory
    • The notes of the guitar fingerboard (Chromatic Scales)
    • Key Signatures
  • Reading Music
    • The notes in the 1st position
    • Tied notes
    • Rests
    • Dotted notes
    • Sharps & flats
    • Swing rhythm
  • How to change chords without stopping
  • Sample tunes in the Beginner Course Champagne Super Nova (Oasis) Don’t Look Back in Anger (Oasis) Wonderwal (Oasis) Lay Down Sally (Eric Clapton) Wonderful Tonite (Eric Clapton) Hotel California (The Eagles) Take it to the Limit (The Eagles) Dumb (Nirvana) Jesus Don’t Want Me (Nirvana) No Rain (Blind Melon) Harvest (Neil Young) Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door (Bob Dylan) If I Had A Million Dollars (Barenaked Ladies) Elderly Woman (Pearl Jam) Runaway Train (Soul Asylum) Mr. Jones (Counting Crows) Wheat Kings (Tragically Hip) Let it Be (Beatles) Eight Days A Week (Beatles) Edmund Fitzgerald (Gordon Lightfoot) Tonite, Tonite (Smashing Pumpkins) Give Me One Reason (Tracy Chapman) Wonderin’ Where The Lions Are (Bruce Cockburn)

Bass Guitar Course

Outline

  • How to tune the bass guitar
  •  Right hand positioning: i and m alternation exercises
  •  Left hand positioning: the concept of numerical positions
  • The triad: how to find root-fifth and octaves. Simple songs to illustrate.
  • Major scales  and the basics of chord construction.
  • The basics of diatonic harmony.
  • Songs to illustrate how to follow the chord changes
  • Right hand technique:  fingerstyle, pick style
  • Left hand technique: the 1-2-4 fingering system
  • Music Reading
  • open string  exercises
  • notes on the E string
  • the shift
  • notes on the A string
  • repeat sign
  • the finger roll
  • notes on the D string
  •  notes on the G string
  • ties, ¾ time, dotted ½ notes, rests, signs
  • Eighth notes: syncopation and reading complex rhythms; funky bass grooves
  • The ‘classic’ rhythm
  • Third  position
  • Stopped notes
  • ‘Swing bass’ ( walking bass ) grooves.

Basics of Ukulele Course

  • Tuning
  • Basics of music:note values,countingrhythms
  • Introduction tosimple chords
  • The simple ballad strum
  • Your first song: how to change chords withoutstopping
  • The ‘campfire’ strum and songs using thisstrum
  • More complex chords
  • The use of the thumb in rhythmplaying
  • More songs using ‘thumb’rhythms
  • Waltz time andsongs using ¾ time
  • Swing rhythm and songs using swing rhythms
  • Notes on the C string and E string andmelodies onthese strings
  • Notes on the Astring, the C major scale, andmelodies based on these
  • The12 bar blues shuffle and blues songs
  • Playing the “backbeat”: bluegrass uke
  • Understanding chord construction and the basics of key harmony; chord families
  • Finger picking: simple patterns, pinch patterns, roll patterns
  • Fingerstyle melodies
  • The single roll stroke and tremolo
  • Rests, sharps and flats, and more complex harmonic theory

Other Guitar Courses and Opportunities

Slide Guitar

A comprehensive introduction to slide guitar in normal and open tunings. Solos are graduated in difficulty. Music by Cooder, Robert Johnson, George Thorogood and others.

Jazz Guitar – An Introduction

  • Jazz chording and rhythms, jazz standards, improvisation, theory, melody reading, swing style, etc.
  • Theory, Composition and Ear Training
  • Chord progressions, modulation, pivot tones, keys, altering and extending chords, chord functions, substituting, chord cycles, transposition, intervals, use of capo. This course also features a “show and tell’ ear training method to facilitate the transcribing of songs

Music Transcribing and Arranging

I will transcribe any piece of music (Note for note) and render a copy in tablature or standard notation. A slowed – down recording of this transcription may also be arranged for.

Video Lessons(Fees extra)

All lessons are available on video by special request.

Course Costs

Lessons are sold in packages of five for $160.00. Lesson times may be made by appointment. Lessons are 1/2 hour, private, and include taping facilities.

Instruments are supplied, including drum tracks, notes and arrangements. Lessons individually custom-tailored in pacing and material, so that students may bring their own music choices to class.
Sign Up Now!

D’Arcy Wickham Studios is now accepting students. Get results with a fun and well-organized curriculum. With subway access and guitar supplied, “learning to teach yourself guitar” has never been easier.

Questions, Inquiries or Sign-Up!

To sign up for D’Arcy Wickham guitar school, or just ask a few questions, please call 416-975-9037, or simply submit the form below.

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Notable Students

Personalities who have studied with D’Arcy Wickham

Shelagh Rogers — Host CBC Radio Show ‘This Morning’
Daniel Lanois — Recording Artist/Producer (Bob Dylan,U2)
Ronnie Cox — Hollywood Actor (‘Total Recall’,’Deliverance’)
David McFarlane — Globe and Mail columnist,author
Evan Solomon — TV Host and author
Daniel Richler — TV host and author, son of Mordecai Richler
Liam Titcomb — SONY Music Recording Artist

Referrals

Notable Personalities who have referred clients to D’Arcy

Gordon Lightfoot
David Wilcox
Danny Marks
Evan Solomon
Bruce Dowbiggan
Bill Cameron

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