Ted Shale - Acoustic guitar
With some trepidation I contacted Craig to enquire about guitar lessons, I thought that at the age of Seventy that I wouldn't be able to make sufficient progress. How wrong I was!!!! With Craig's enthusiasm and his ability to focus and guide me, I have made great progress with my playing. He carefully structured the lessons to stretch me and at the same time provides me with great tunes from my youth to learn. I would highly recommend Craig and would say to anyone of a similar age to me to go for it.
I have certainly benefited from my lessons with Craig and would highly recommend him.
lee caffery - Ukulele
Craig has a great technique and teaching style with the ukulele.
I have been a student for nearly a year now and the lessons are never dull and are styled at your particular level and style. He's a good laugh and all round good guy, book him....seriously!
Julie Jackson - ukulele
A two year anniversary testimonial for Craig Gamble.
Without being too dramatic my life changed in January 2014 when I had my first lesson with Craig.
I had been given a ukulele by my brother in May 2013 and had struggled to learn to play it.
I tried tuition videos from the Internet to no avail and to be honest I had virtually given up because I couldn't progress past basic chords. My brother then bought be a Banjolele for Christmas 2013 and he had spent a lot of money on the instrument so I felt compelled to look for a tutor.
I contacted Craig just after Christmas and had my first lesson with him at his house in Aigburth.
His first question was what do you want to be able to do with the instrument and mentioned George Forrmby . That caused an explosive reaction from me because I can't stand George Formby.
I said I wanted to be like the guy in Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain who does all the twiddly bits.
Well two years on I am doing the twiddly bits but unknown to me at the time it's called finger style.
I can also read tablature like a pro now...
Craig is brilliant at getting the best out of his students and always gives me more time than an hour because we end up chatting and putting the world to rights. He is so talented and whatever song you want to learn he will transcribe a version for you. And the best of all is that it is all done with humour.
For most of my lessons with Craig all as you can hear is laughing.
I honestly never thought I would become as proficient in playing the ukulele as I am now and there is still so much I want to learn. I have joked with Craig that I will end up paying for his children's university education, but joking aside, I couldn't imagine life without my ukulele and look forward to my lessons with Craig every week.
He is so supportive and puts up with my texts when I am going through a bad patch and feel like throwing my ukulele through the window (there have been a few times).
Craig is also very professional and keeps files on where we are up to and what the next steps are. He always has pieces of music ready and if you don't like it it's not a problem, he will just bring another piece along.
I also like the fact that he sends an invoice every month so we know where we are up to money wise.
Thank you Craig for your wonderful sunny persona, your truly professional approach to teaching and the fact that you bring laughter and humour into my home every week. I am a very lucky person that I happen to live in the best city in the world and that the best ukulele tutor happens to live here too.
Thanking you from the bottom of my heart for the enrichment that the ukulele and music has brought to my life. It truly is never too late I come from a musical family and thought that the music gene had passed me by but at 56 I have proven that anything is possible if you have the right tuition and persistence.
Laura tickle - guitar & Music theory
In the two years that I received music lessons from Craig, the wealth of what I learnt pushed my interest from electric guitar, to acoustic, and then finally to classical. During the lessons we initially worked on the basics; chords, technique and learning to read music & tablature, and ended working on pieces of complex classical music. Every lesson Craig would bring new music for me to look over and learn, and pieces from previous weeks would be revised and practiced.
When I started my GCSE in music, Craig helped with the theory and practical; recommending books,
supporting my musical revision, and even helping to compose, perform and record a piece of Flamenco guitar. During the course of the GCSE, my expected grade went from a D to an A, which I eventually achieved, which I accredit purely to Craig, and the things that I learnt during the lessons.
Having originally only taken up guitar lessons to help with my school work, I hadn’t expected an interest in music theory to develop, and I’m certain that I would not be so passionate about music now if it had not been taught to me with such genuine enthusiasm.
One of the most important aspects of the lessons for me was the encouragement that I got from Craig, in regards to getting in involved in school concerts, and other musical performances. Considering that prior to having music lessons I had no confidence in the music that I was playing, and was unable to get involved in concerts, or even work with other musicians, my development has been drastic. Through Craig’s teaching, I gained an understanding, and appreciation of performed music, and as a result gained the confidence to get involved in all school concerts; playing in groups and solo.
Having concluded lessons several years ago now, and having moved on to studying art forms other than music, I can fully appreciate how much of an effect the lessons had on me. Learning the theory and practical aspects of classical guitar has given me an understanding and appreciation of the arts in a way that only music can. The lessons instilled a love of music, which is just as important to me now as it was when I finished my lessons. I continue to play classical guitar, and I’m still fascinated by the theoretical side of music, but what I feel is more important, in regards to what I learnt from the lessons with Craig, is that it’s possible to make a career out of the arts, if it’s something that you are passionate about, and are willing to work on.
Basma KH - guitar & Music theory
When I had my first lesson with Craig, I had never played the guitar before, nor knew anything about it.
He slowly introduced me to the structure of the acoustic guitar, the names of each component, as well as taught me the basic chords. He showed me pieces and techniques that I aspired to be able to play and utilise.
This encouraged me to practice all day, every day.
I improved rapidly and in no time was playing more complex finger picking pieces and difficult chords.
He was always very professional and made me truly love the instrument (particularly because he transcribed any piece/song I wanted for the guitar). He accepted any challenge with open arms!
Additionally, once my playing had improved, Craig advised me which guitar to purchase, which I now cannot travel without. I have no hesitation in recommending Craig as a tutor for any guitarist, both complete beginners, or more established players wishing to diversity their techniques or styles.
Jaquie mason (Mum to John & Sophie) - ukulele
Craig started doing a group ukulele session with my children a few years ago now.
Although Sophie (11) could already play piano, John (7) had no background with music at all.
At first I thought the group sessions would be problematic due to the ages and the different ability levels, but Craig created fun and interesting lessons, tailored to both John and Sophie inclusively. John still loves his 'Sunshine' ukulele and plays often whilst Sophie has continued to excell with her music, also separately studying Guitar grades with Craig and joining her school jazz band. I would recommened Craig as a tutor for youngsters as he communicates music very well and is very friendly and fun. Jaquie Mason
Denise warren (Mum to James) - electric guitar grades & theory
Craig tutored my son James for 5 years, from ages 13-18. In that time, James progressed from a complete beginner (after receiving a spanish guitar for Christmas) to competent electric guitarist in just 6 months (after taking to the lessons well and enjoying practising, we bought him a Electric Guitar for his birthday).
Craig brought an imaginative and tactful approach to James' lessons as, at first, my son's mind would
wander and his concentration wane... Craig made sure that whatever James enjoyed to listen to outside of the lessons (Rock/Indie music mainly) he would teach him that, along with his chords, strumming and basic music theory. After starting secondary school, Craig taught James his Grades, Rockschool Electric Guitar, as well as riffs and advanced technique. James has just recently passed his Grade 6 in Rockschool as well as his ABRSM Music Theory and has now taken his studies to The University of Nottingham on a Music BA degree.
Craig is an excellent tutor who I would recommend to parents and older students alike.
linda Murray (KT, USA) - mandolin
I was looking to advance my Mandolin playing from an intermediate level to an advanced level but struggled to find a tutor locally. After finding Craig online, I gave him a call to arrange Skype lessons...he was very accommodating, especially considering the time difference and all. I was already an experienced musician, having played guitar and banjo for years, but hit a brick wall when learning the mandolin, transalting my knowledge on the other instruments (Chors/Strumming) and that was all. Craig unlocked new exercises and introduced me to flat-picking bluegrass and folk mandolin pieces and new artists who I have continued to be inspired by. He emailed worksheets to me and the fluency of the lessons was essential to my continued development. My picking dexterity has improved with consitent practice and we Skype fortnightly for lessons without fail, learning new instrumentals and songs at every session. I take these skills and put them to use in my family bluegrass band, The Oregon Travellers.
stan jameson - 5-string banjo
I am a 62 year old Banjo enthusiast from West Derby. Craig helped me find my feet on the 5-String Banjo, which had been sitting in a case for over 10 years! Although I found the instrument a challange at first, my perseverance with the lessons paid off and I am now on my way to performing some basic tunes and bluegrass standards. Although I'm not the best and don't practice nearly enough, weekly sessions with Craig have helped me to form a routine and his enthusdiasm and drive have developed my confidence. Practice makes perfect. We still meet every Wednesday morning and hope to continue my progress. Stan
Brittany Carlisle - Acoustic Guitar
Craig's tuition really helped me focus my playing. Craig opened my eyes no new styles of music and new texhniques and since then I have expanded my reportoire on my instrument. I would recommend Craig to any aspiring or advanced player as he can not only get you off the ground but he will also open your ears to new areas of playing and new styles of music. Thanks Craig :0)