I began teaching friends and classmates how to play a few chords and basic lead guitar back in the mid 70’s. It seemed like the normal thing to do because music is such a fun thing and I wanted to share it. In the early 80’s I was offered a chance to teach guitar at the locally owned guitar store in my hometown of Fort Dodge and I’ve never stopped unless I was on the road full time. I’ve made so many excellent friends through teaching and it’s good to watch these people go forth and become my peers and surpass what I can do.
Music focuses my hands, feet, tongue and heart into something creative and productive and calms me down. Although it is my career, it’s about friendship and giving back to the community. I have many students who suffer from anxiety and depression or have extremely stressful careers and they tell me the lesson time with me is the highlight of their week, which I found shocking to hear but am realizing rather late that music is more than just making some racket and having a good time, it is vital for health and well-being. It is the highest form of art humans can do.
Music keeps me humble and in awe of the talents of so many others. I love seeing any band or performer in person even if the skill level is not highly refined. I don’t need it to be perfect, in fact if it’s too smooth I can get bored. Let it be real and raw. Mistakes are ok. When we hit a wrong note, it can lead to a whole new level of understanding and open up more possibilities.
- Brook Hoover
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