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How do the Lessons work?

Lessons FAQ

How much do you charge for lessons?

Please click here for my latest prices and special offers.

Who can have lessons with Cliff Smith?

  • Guitar, ukulele or music theory pupils
  • Beginner to advanced level
  • Children or adults (age 7+)
  • All lessons are on a private one-to-one basis. I do not teach groups.

What do I need for the lesson?

  • Your instrument
  • A tuner
  • Device with webcam and sound: phone, tablet, computer. Bigger is better – you’ll have a much better experience on a big computer screen than a tiny phone screen, but it still works.
  • Download the Zoom app onto your device – it’s much better than running the web version.

Do you do home visits?

No, but I can teach you online via Zoom from the comfort of your home or office.

How often should I have a lesson?

  • Lessons can be at a fixed or varied time.
  • I recommend one lesson per week if possible, but we can arrange the lessons to suit your schedule and budget – fortnightly, monthly, as and when … whatever works for YOU!
  • I do not require pupils to commit to a series of lessons, but 95% of people come back!

How many lessons will I need?

That depends what your goals are, and how hard you work! See ‘Practice’, and ‘Progress’ below.

Do you sell gift vouchers for lessons?

  • Yes! I will send you a professionally printed gift certificate in the post, or email a PDF if you prefer.
  • Lessons are online, via Zoom
  • See my ‘Guitar Gift Certificates’ page for further details.

Guitar and Ukulele lessons

My guitar and ukulele lessons will include techniques and theory relevant to the songs and pieces that you are learning. I use TAB, chord charts and standard music notation.

Each lesson is tailored to the abilities and goals of the individual student. For each style I ensure that students are competent in the basics, before moving on to learn the repertoire.

What would you like to achieve? Do you wish to study graded exams (classical, acoustic, electric)? Are you a singer wanting to accompany yourself?

Are you a budding songwriter? Do you want to join a band? I can teach you how to play your favourite songs if you give me a list!

Music Theory lessons

My theory lesson content will depend on the needs of the pupil. We can cover music notation, sight-reading, aural, songwriting, general music theory, RGT, Trinty Guildhall or Associated Board exams…

I try to split each lesson between what you want to learn, and what you need to learn. If there is something in particular you are looking for, just ask.


I teach online via Zoom, and my setup us state of the art: high definition, wide angle webcam with zoom function, studio quality sound via Line6 Helix, all mixed live for you to get the best possible lesson sound and balance of my voice, instrument and any recordings used.


Please click here to see my latest fees and offers.

Tuition times

Tuesday to Thursday
2:00pm – 9:30pm UK time

Monday, Friday, Saturday & Sunday

Everything else you need to know…


In order to be able to play effectively, you must be aware that it is necessary to work at material over and over again until it is internalised, and that some students need more repetitions than others to achieve this internalisation. This is called practice!

Between lessons, you will need to practice as much and as often as you can. The more often you practice, the quicker your progress will be and the better you will become. Aim for an hour per day. If you can do more than this please do, but take breaks every hour at least – get up and walk around, leave the room if possible.


The speed of your progress as a guitarist will depend on how hard you work at it. There will always be other things competing with your scheduled practice time. I cannot organise your life for you – I can only offer you expert tuition and guide you through every stage of your guitar playing.

Only your motivation and application, coupled with my support, can turn you into a competent guitarist. I cannot guarantee results, because I do not control you – I cannot guarantee that you will do any work! What I can say is this; follow my guidance and you will improve!

Music Notation

It is not essential to be able to read music to study the electric or steel string acoustic guitar, but reading is a very useful tool and I encourage all of my students to learn how to read rhythms at least – I can teach you. Once you get to a certain level, you will want to learn to read music, even if you don’t feel that way right now!

Sight-reading is mandatory for classical guitarists, but again – I can teach you. We would start with very simple melodies and work up from there. Reading music really isn’t as difficult as you may think it is.

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