Tag Archives: music students

Five of the best Taylor acoustic guitars

They’re the guitar of choice for modern artists like Taylor Swift and Jason Mraz and have a very American history which dates back to the 1970s. So it’s no wonder Taylor guitars are considered the supreme of the string world.

Their inventory is wide-ranging. To help you navigate it, here’s a list of their five most popular instruments.

Best Taylor Acoustic Guitars


GS Mini 

First among the guitars it promotes on its website, the GS Mini is a solid go-to acoustic guitar. Its at the lower end of Taylor’s cost range at $499 and is adored by artists for its playability and portability.


Check out Shoreline Music giving it a whirl in store.


Baby Taylor 

The Baby Taylor is a 3/4 size guitar so is perfect for travel and spontaneous practice. It’s cheaper than the GS at $329 but still boasts the same deep bellied sound the brand is famous for.


Here’s a sample of the Baby range from Wildwood Guitars.

 Big Baby Taylor 

The clue’s in the name with the Big Baby Taylor – it’s the Baby, but bigger. Add on another $70, this acoustic guitar comes in at $399. It graduates past being the travel guitar category given its extra size.


Curious about the difference? Watch this Battle of the Babies to find out.

214 CE

The 214ce is a 25 and a half inch beast. It’s more expensive, at $999, but guitarists love its rosewood finish. It’s considered the ‘gateway’ into the brand’s more expensive instruments. The Taylor sound thats common throughout the range is also elevated when plugged in.

Taylor 214 CE

Shoreline brings it life in this video.


Grand deluxe auditorium


At a jaw-dropping $8,000, the PS16CE sits at the top of the Taylor range and is part of its Presentation Series. Its designed for performance and comes under the category of Grand Symphony limited edition.



Its sides are a dark, Macassar ebony and the body is Spruce. All in all, it’s a show-stopping guitar with a rumbling belly of sound. Its bells and whistles include  Gotoh Gold tuners, a bone nut and saddle, a Florentine cutaway, and Taylor Expression System 2 electronics.

To hear it roar, check out this review from Acoustic Letter.

Guitar not your thing? Try check out there  beginner Drumsets!


Five great resources for music teachers

Music teachers are constantly struggling to find new resources and sources of inspiration.

With seemingly endless cuts to funding for teacher programs, many parents are opting to get their kid’s music education outside of school through private lessons. Even if you teach music in a school, there is a good chance that you supplement your income by teaching private lessons outside of the school.

Teaching privately is interesting because there is no set standard for curriculum like there is in the schools. You can teach each student differently based on their individual talents and their overall goals. Every great teacher is looking for new resources to help them better their teaching style and their own skills as a musician. Here are five of the best resources for music teachers to help you.

Virtual education


Video chat apps like Skype have made it easier to communicate over long distances. Video chat has made it easier than ever for teachers to reach students. Your student-base is now the entire world instead of just your immediate area. It also gives students the ability as a teacher to seek out specific teachers they want to work with.

Outside of real time interaction, another benefit of online lessons is that you can pre-record lessons and put them online. Once online, they can be downloaded and watched over and over again by students, meaning you can be teaching multiple lessons at the same time. A great way to get started is to upload a couple of simple lessons to YouTube to help create interest.  Tablets like Amazon’s Fire HD make these easily digestible for students and allow you to film from anywhere.



Traditionally, books have been the music teacher’s greatest aid. Their education value is the same when consumed in digital form and, if you’re teaching kids, you’re more likely to captivate a tech-savvy student’s attention by pointing them to an online version.

Almost every hard copy book is also available in Kindle format or through another device.

Mobile Apps


There is a mobile application for just about everything, including music education. Whether you use an Amazon Kindle, an iOS, or an Android device, there are hundreds of apps available to help you educate you students more effectively. The best part is that many of these application are available at no cost

Among the most popular is iReal book which contains an online catalogue of  thousands of jazz standards. Amazon’s Echo series – which includes the Echo, Dot and Echo Show, also come with built in guitar tuners and metronomes.

There’s more on how to use the Echo as a musician or teacher here.

Speak to other teachers


There’s a lot to be said for reaching out to the community of music teachers near you or beyond to find out how they’re aiding their careers. Whether you’re considering teaching a new instrument or if you need advice, there are a number of great forums like the National Association for Music Education where you can turn to for tips.

The Music Teacher Chatboard on teacher.net also provides a safe place for teachers to trade advice or thoughts.

Recording Devices


Whether it be a full on recording studio or just an HD camera set up in the corner, it is a good idea to have a way to record the lessons you are teaching.

You can give these recordings to your students and they can review them later. Doing this makes it easier for them to remember everything you went over in the lesson. On top of that, you can review the recordings to see how you can improve as a teacher.  Just as athletes review game tapes, it can sometimes make the difference between a student progressing past a difficult obstacle or staying stuck behind it.  If you don’t want to tape something on camera, recording it on a voice recorder might be a suitable and cheaper alternative. Click on the highlighted words for great options on both.

Have you considered an Amazon Echo? Check out our post on using an Amazon Echo to practice Music.


Mental benefits of a music education: Big benefits for the brain!

Music is more than just a combination of notes and lyrics.  For a lot of people, it’s a way of life, a livelihood and for some it’s a form of therapy. With an abundance of research proving the cognitive and emotional benefits it can also bring, more and more parents are looking to music education to help boost their child’s development. As this article will discuss, there are several mental benefits of a music education, both for children and adults.

Music education facilitates learning other subjects

Studies have shown that a child who studies music will also find it easier to learn other things as well. Singing, listening and moving during music classes will also make it easier for children to experience and enjoy regular classes and it also helps boost their confidence.

It opens up your child’s attention to new things

Yes, music education broadens your child’s perspective. It makes things more interesting and appealing. At the same time, it boosts your child’s focus, and it helps re-wire the brain. If they show a knack for it, it can become a stimulating pastime that can easily turn into a lifelong passion or career.

Language development

It’s no coincidence the alphabet and colours of the rainbow are taught by song. From a pre-school age, children absorb language effortlessly through music. It’s a learning skill that can be carried through their entire school years. Plus, growing up in an environment that is musically rich can easily pay off. Your child will also be able to celebrate and reinforce the inborn capacities in a natural manner.

More focus and attention

By subscribing to music education, your child becomes more focused and dedicated to the matter at hand. The discipline teaches them to attention to detail and encourages a higher level of commitment to other facets of their child and adult lives.

Music education boosts brain chemicals

By listening to music or creating it, your body will generate more dopamine. As a result, this motivational molecule increases your state of well-being. This is why every child that opts for music education is a lot happier and often more determined than their peers. It’s a unique benefit which is difficult to find in other extra-curricular subjects.

Better fine motor skills

Music education in younger children has shown an improvement of the fine motor skills.

Increased creativity

Some of the world’s best musicians also hailed as pioneering creatives. Honing a child’s creative senses from a young age can help set them on a path of lifelong stimulation in music and other creative ventures which they may otherwise never have been exposed to.

So, music education can be incredible for any child regardless of if they show natural aptitude for any one instrument or genre. It provides a plethora of both short and long-term benefits as well as improving mental health and self-esteem.