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A tutor who gets his message across well

Here’s another in my occasional series of musical ‘treats’ that I have come across whilst doodling around on the internet since the coronavirus pandemic and the UK lockdown began.

Despite having spent the bulk of my working life in and around the music industry I don’t have more than a scintilla of musical knowledge/technical understanding – or indeed talent, I was excused music classes at school for being effectively tone deaf and in the ‘end of term’ concerts was made to stand at the back and pretend to sing whilst not uttering a single note – and I have often felt the need to resort to that “get out” clause often deployed by the uninformed when trying to explain my musical tastes: “I don’t know what is good, but I know what I like”.

However, that doesn’t stop me appreciating the efforts of those who excel as musicians – especially those who can explain, teach and inspire.

Today I’m giving a salute to Rick Beato – a veteran working musician, producer, composer and academic steeped in musical theory and every genre from classical through jazz, country to hard rock without being a snob about any of them. He’s not only a brilliant multi-instrumentalist but possesses a bucket-load of enthusiasm and a teaching-style that is uniquely ‘open’ and infectious that I’m sure he would inspire anyone who found themselves in his presence. Beato is not a fan of modern, computer-generated music – he very much prefers and promotes the notion of ‘real’ music played live on instruments.

He also has his own YouTube channel, which is where I came across him.

To give Rusters a flavour of what I’m referring to, below I am providing links to a pair of his video tutorials on tunes by one of the all-time great rock bands Led Zeppelin, comprising Jimmy Page (lead guitar), John Paul Jones (bass/keyboards), Robert Plant (vocals/harmonica) and the legendary John Bonham (drums).

One of the myths about rock music is that the great musicians of ‘my time’ (1960s-1980s) were so busy touring, playing concerts and partying that very little thought or time went into their music-making.

The truth is very far from that, which is one of the reasons that makes their efforts appear all the more remarkable when they considered in retrospect and analysed in detail by those such as Rick Beato.

[Warning: those uninterested in rock music may not find what follows of great interest].

Firstly, here’s a link to his tutorial on Whole Lotta Love – one of the first and perhaps best known of all Led Zeppelin greatest ‘hits’ – I use the word advisably since as far as I am aware they never issued a single in the UK – YOUTUBE(1)

And secondly, here’s his take on a later, and perhaps less well known, ditties Ramble OnYOUTUBE (2)


About Michael Stuart

After university, Michael spent twelve years working for MELODY MAKER before going freelance. He claims to keep doing it because it is all he knows. More Posts