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Kagen Axsom, Chesapeake, VA

I have been a student of Duncan L. Wood for the last six and one half years.  I have experienced tremendous amounts of growth as a bassist and guitarist as Duncan’s pupil, learning nearly everything I know about music theory and proper technique from him.  Taking lessons from Duncan has been a truly rewarding experience and privilege to have; my rapid development as a competent musician is all thanks to Duncan.  I have been improving my knowledge of music and my skill as a guitarist since I was 10 years old at an increased rate due to Duncan’s expertise as a musician.  Not only is Duncan an exceptional guitarist and teacher, but he is also a great influence on my life and character.  I believe that Duncan is one of the most qualified authorities as a guitarist and as a teacher; he has the ability to instruct and guide any guitarist towards improvement, no matter what level of skill or experience they have.  When searching for a music instructor or authority, I would look no further than Duncan L. Wood.

Duncan has been instructing our son on both bass and acoustic guitar for over 6 years.  In that time, we’ve seen our son grow significantly in his playing ability.  Duncan does a great job of pushing his skill levels with challenging compositions, while giving him the skills he needs to be successful.  On top of being a great instructor, he has also grown into a mentor and friend for our son.  He’s somebody our child looks up to and respects very much.  We highly recommend Duncan!

Jason & Lynne Axsom, Chesapeake, VA

I have been studying guitar with Duncan for several years.  My initial motivation was to learn to play classical music.  As time went on, he introduced me to techniques and styles that I could use to accompany myself or others in ways that would enhance the performance.  His approach is based in both sound guitar playing theory, observation and analysis of the mechanics of playing a guitar, and understanding the students motivation in playing the instrument.  In my case, he greatly helped me to expand my ability to play various types of music, such as blues, jazz, classical, pop, etc., and also in developing playing styles using arpeggios, syncopated arpeggios, Travis picking, classical fingering and playing etc. to allow me to chose the best playing style to accompany the piece I was performing, either as an accompanist or as a solo performer.  I know that I would not have developed into the better player I am today without his guidance. 

Darryl Girtz, Chesapeake, VA

Karen Rodi stand-in, Norfolk, VA

The Perfect Guitarist is my go-to book for all things guitar.  I use it as a student and as a teacher.  The book is meticulously written.  The method is based on logic, simplicity, efficiency, and patterns.  It’s great for beginners and even the most experienced players can learn something from it.  It covers everything from guitar maintenance to the art of the capo, finger picking and everything in between.  I really enjoy the little stories that appear throughout the book.  As a long time student of Duncan’s, I’ve had the privilege of hearing them many times over.  One of the things that really strikes me about Duncan, is that his students stay his students because there is always more to learn.  He has the incredible skills and extensive knowledge to keep us challenged and passionate.  We can become teachers ourselves, but never even consider stopping our own lessons.  We also acquire such a deep respect for our instruments and our art through the lessons.  Whether you are brand-new to guitar or you’ve been playing professionally for years, Duncan will be able to teach you something new and make you an even better player.

Charles Cook, Chesapeake, VA

While attending college at Purdue University, I had a friend who expressed interest in learning to play the guitar. My friend was very smart, capable, and a successful student. I told him that I would be happy to play guitar with him and help teach him the basics. Within the first three minutes of the guitar session my friend paused, looked at me, and said “Wow, you ACTUALLY know how to play the guitar. I’m glad you are teaching me the fundamentals; it’s comforting to know that I am learning to play the RIGHT way”.

I learned to play guitar the “right way” from Duncan. Duncan is a world-class guitar teacher who rises above the competition in both his playing and his understanding of the guitar. Duncan’s innovative methods of teaching elite guitar form, technique, and music theory are extremely effective and make learning the guitar fun. I have taken guitar lessons from Duncan for over ten years and my ability has far exceeded my initial expectations. I continue to take guitar lessons from Duncan and I highly recommend them! His book, The Perfect Guitarist, outlines many of his teachings regarding guitar form, technique, and theory. It is a great book for developing guitarists! If you are interested in becoming an elite guitarist, or just want to have fun learning to play guitar the “right way”, I highly recommend learning from Duncan!

Marcheta Bryce

I have quite a collection of guitar instruction books, and they pretty much have the same information. What makes The Perfect Guitarist stand out or me is that it is more oriented toward the process of learning to play the guitar, e.g., the finger logic exercises, the chunk system for scalar theory (I'd never seen this before), chordal theory and pathways, and coloring the open strings in music notation when first learning to read and play music on the guitar. This is a great learning and reference book. I changed it to a spiral-binding as I keep it on my music stand and refer

to it constantly.

Rated 5/5 stars *****

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