Tal Morris, Guitar Educator
Tal teaches at the Bananas at Large San Rafael location on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, and would love to start teaching you! If you’d like to get started on acoustic or electric guitar with Tal, he is offering a “Buy 3 Get the 4th FREE” Promotion*.
*Use Coupon BUY3GET1TAL at checkout to get 1 FREE hour lesson!
*First lesson is FREE and only applies to an hour lesson. Lesson package must be paid up front to receive Free Lesson. Tuition is non-refundable & 48 hours cancellation policy must be observed to cancel or reschedule any lesson.
How did you get started in music?
“My parents were musicians, I grew up in the environment. I dabbled around, not knowing much, with a cheap guitar I got when I was 8 or 9, but I didn't know how to tune it or care for it. I don't really think it could be tuned as I remember. I decided to take a guitar class in my sophomore year of High School and I did extremely well, (with a school guitar). At the end of the year I was placed with the seniors in the advanced level class. My parents bought me an electric guitar after that and I started learning by listening to records and copying what I heard. Then in 1981 I went to Blue Bear School of Music in San Francisco while in High School and started studying with earnest from great teachers.”
What artists inspired you when you were first learning to play?
“BB King, Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Carlos Santana, Jeff Beck.”
How long have you been playing?
“Actively since 1978-79 so coming up on 40 years!”
What is your favorite genre to play and why?
“There isn't one, really that's the truth... I love the instrument itself and its potential. There are so many things that can be done with it. I have been playing blues rock and jazz the longest. I'm currently deeply inspired by the soul/gospel guitar movement (in music context), its a very exciting time with lots of extremely talented and relatively unknown players (to the public at large) doing amazing things out there.”
What is your favorite song to play right now?
“BWV 998 by Bach (prelude), Goodbye Pork Pie Hat by Charles Mingus, Down Payment Blues by AC/DC.”
What made you decide to start teaching?
“I found out I was good at it by chance. I returned to Blue Bear School of Music many years later and they gave me a position in their faculty where I taught individual lessons, workshops, and classes for about 10 years.”
Are you in any bands?
“I currently split my time between being a music producer, music director and being a journeyman hired gun for a variety of people and projects. I have a lot of history being in bands over many years and have toured the world. Locally I have a Groove Jazz organ trio, called The Madmen Trio, I also do various rock projects and specialize in accompanying singers and songwriters.”
What tidbits would you like to share?
“Fun stories? Playing to 50,000 in Chihuahua Mexico was FUN!!!!! Jamming the blues with George Benson in Cognac, France outdoors watching an amazing sunset from stage was a highlight of my life... The most powerful guitar performance I ever saw was in a club that fit maybe 60 people and was a complete stinking dive. NEVER JUDGE, great players and music is EVERYWHERE, it's NOT the setting, it's the musicians and the sound...”
What is the best advice you can give to a beginning player who is just starting?
“Make sure you are inspired/thirsty for learning. Learn in digestible bites, go easy on yourself, be patient, persistent and consistent. When you achieve a goal or skill no matter how small, CELEBRATE that and feel good. Ask questions. This is the way to advance. Never be afraid to experiment as well.”
What is the best advice you would give to an established player?
“Never stop learning, find or re find your emotional voice for your instrument and exploit that. Never forget that Rhythm and time is THE most important aspect of musicianship. There is always room to be a better LISTENER. Developing a discerning ear, being able to make great choices, that's the ticket.”
What is your “gigging” instrument and equipment and why?
“I use Mesa Boogie Amplifiers (I own 4 models), I use a Lone Star Special for Jazz and Blues and R&B and Triple Crown 50 for Rock and edgier blues and R&B as well, and Two Rock Amps for different reasons. I also use vintage/re issue Fender Amps, my favorites being Princeton Reverb and Vibrolux Reverb. I use B3 Guitars by Gene Baker, Gibson SG, PRS Mira X, Custom made Strats, I have lots of guitars. I use Way Huge, MXR, Ernie Ball strings, and picks.”
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