Learning your way...

Learn guitar, bass and ukulele. Guy Somers customizes private lessons to reach your goals. He has taught over 800 people to play in 30 years. Avoid frustration, bad habits & learn quicker.

  • Call (712) 250-4398 or SIGN-UP NOW
  • See FAQ for more info

2 ways to learn...

We Use Skype

  • For instruments as needed
  • See FAQ for info
Online

Lesson Options

  • Annual
  • Seasonal
  • Summer-Only
  • Atlantic & Carroll, IA
  • See FAQ for info

 

In-Studio

• LIVE MUSIC •

Musical Moments

The live music of Guy Somers will add that touch of class to your next event. He is a college-trained musician with over 1,000 performances to his credit. Services include:

  • Guitar & voice with backing tracks, or instrumental guitar
  • Standards - pop, soft rock, blues, classical, jazz, sacred
  • Private music planning meeting
  • High-quality sound system
  • Travel time and appropriate attire
  • Press release & referrals upon request
  • See FAQ's "live music" for more info

Call (712) 250-4398 or BOOK NOW below

 

• WHAT THEY SAY •

Remarks & Recommendations

  • Josh Solvedt (guitarist) for hardcore metal band Terraform

    Former Student
  • Phil Pfeiffer (guitar & vocals) of Love Heathen playing a blues rock original

    Former Student
  • Acoustic guitarist & songwriter Tanner Peck playing a blues original
     

    Former Student
  • Not just another guitarist, the tastefulness with which Guy accompanies an artist is impeccable.

    Jonathan Martin – The Martins, Grammy Nominee
  • Bassist JT Baker, guitarists Josh Craig and Sam Hayes from the classic rock band Gallivant (formerly Haze)

    Fomer Students
  • What a tremendous enhancement Guy's background music is at our Jazz & Wine events.

    Iowa Western Community College
  • Guy played for my daughter's wedding. I was very pleased and I loved his classical repertoire.

    Dr. Wendy Prigge
  • Bad Authority guitarists (1st place winner) 2014 Iowa Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Battle of the Bands

    Former Students
  • Bassist Adam Weppler from the rock band Four Story Fate

    Former Student
  • Bassist Ben Kristy from the progressive rock band Eustace

    Former Student
  • Guitarist Chance Trewet and bassist Dylan Kay from the metal band Greg The Hero

    Former Students

• FAQS •

Frequently Asked...

ALLERGY ALERT

Dear Students and Potential Students,

Due to a severe allergy, I cannot have anyone in the studio whose clothes, skin, instrument or case smell of:

  • Cat (hair or dander)
  • Tobbacco (cigarette, cigar, pipe, pot)

If you had contact with either and are unable to shower and put on clean clothes prior to coming, then I will be happy to Skype your lesson online that day. Otherwise, I must cancel your lesson without refund. This is unfortunate, as I know that many of you enjoy a good smoke and/or love your pets! (I apologize.......it's a real pain to live with allergies at this level). If you have any questions or would like to discuss your lesson opportunities, please call (712) 250-4398.

Sincerely,

Guy Somers
Play Better

Accessories

The area's best selection and price on:

ACCESSORIES

Brands - D'Addario, Dunlop, Fred Kelly, K&M, MBT, Planet Waves, String Swing, TKL, Tour Grade

  • Batteries
  • Bridge pins
  • Capos
  • Endpins
  • Footstools
  • Instrument cables - 1/4 inch
  • Instrument docks & rests
  • Instrument gig bags
  • Instrument wall hangers
  • Humidity sensors
  • Humidifiers
  • Music stands
  • Picks
  • Pick holders
  • Polishing cloths
  • Slides
  • Straps
  • Strap pegs
  • String winders
  • Stereo 1/8 inch audio cables (3 ft.)
  • Tuners

STRINGS

Brands - Aquila, D'Addario, Dunlop, Elixir, Ernie Ball, GHS, Martin, Savarez

  • Acoustic
  • Bass
  • Classical
  • Electric
  • Sets
  • Singles
  • Ukulele

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Gift Certificates

USE GIFT CERTIFICATES FOR

  • Lessons
  • Live music
  • Instruments
  • Strings & accessories
  • Instrument maintenance

DELIVERY OPTIONS

  • Mail delivery
  • Emailed printable PDF
  • Pickup at Somers Guitar

GIFT CERTIFICATES

  • Never expire
  • Are transferable
  • Are customizable
  • Come in any amount
  • Are non-refundable
  • Not redeemable for cash
  • Are available in a gift-styled envelope

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Instruments

We currently carry and have the best price in the area on Cordoba & Recording King instruments:

  • Classical guitars (nylon strings)
  • Acoustic guitars (steel strings)
  • Ukuleles

Info about Cordoba Protege series acoustic instruments:

  • High-quality
  • Affordable
  • Easy to play
  • Spanish style
  • Nylon stringed
  • With gig bag
  • Spruce top
  • Mahoghany back & sides
  • 2-way truss rod (guitars)
  • Sizes - guilele, 1/4, 1/2, 3/4 and full

C1 1/4 SIZE

  • For ages 4 and up
  • 31.75" overall length, 1.75" nut, 18.9" scale

C1 1/2 SIZE

  • For ages 6 and up
  • 35" overall length, 1.88" nut, 22.8" scale

C1 3/4 SIZE

  • For ages 8 and up
  • 35" overall length, 1.88" nut, 22.8" scale

C1 FULL SIZE GUITAR

  • For ages 11 and up
  • 39.125" overall length, 2.04" nut, 25.6" scale

Visit FAQ "Instrument Shopping" for more info. Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Instrument Maintenance

We recommend these annually:

FULL SETUP

Includes all the types of maintenance recommended:

  • Head, Neck & Body
  • Fretboard & bridge
  • Restringing
  • Intonation
  • Humidity & temperature
  • Strap buttons

HEAD, NECK & BODY

Keeps your instrument in good playing condition. We: 

  • Clean & polish the body
  • Lubricate nut & saddle
  • Lubricate gears
  • Adjust - saddle and pickup height
  • Deoxidize - selector switch & knobs as needed
  • Tighten - nuts, screws, knobs, end pins and cable jack
  • Adjust the neck angle (1) to prevent cracks at the bridge, neck and top (2) to straighten the neck making the strings closer to the fretboard and easier to play.

FRETBOARD & BRIDGE

We clean the frets, fingerboard and bridge and oil the wood. The benefits are many:

  • Strings last longer
  • Looks new again
  • Darkens the wood
  • Leaves a smooth feel
  • No dirt or residue buildup
  • Helps prevent fretboard shrinkage

RESTRINGING

D'Addario Strings help you sound, sustain and stay in tune better. We:

  • Install new strings
  • Stretch the strings

INTONATION

Keeps your instrument in tune all the way up the neck by adjusting:

  • neck allignment
  • each individual saddle to it's proper distance

HUMIDITY & TEMPERATURE

Our Planet Waves humidifiers and sensors maintain 45% humidity and 65 degree temperature to prevent:

  • Cracks
  • String buzz
  • Finish checking
  • Going out of tune
  • Permanent damage

STRAP BUTTONS

Our Planet Waves brass buttons hold the strap and come in:

  • Black
  • Gold
  • Silver

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Instrument Restringing

WHAT DEADENS STRINGS?

Dirt, oil & sweat oxidizes strings after 15 hours of play therefore:

  • Wash hands before play
  • Wipe strings after play
  • Change strings frequently
  • Consider coated strings that last 4 X's longer

RESTRINGING DONE RIGHT

Improves your:

  • Feel
  • Tone
  • Tuning
  • Sustain
  • String life

WHAT DO WE RESTRING?

  • Acoustic guitar
  • Bass
  • Classical guitar
  • Electric guitar
  • Locking tremolo
  • Twelve-string guitar
  • Ukulele

RESTRINGING INCLUDES

  • D'Addario strings
  • Installation time
  • String stretching to remove slack which helps them stay in tune better

WE RECOMMEND

A Full-Setup annually while strings are off. It includes maintenance for:

  • Restringing
  • Head, neck & body
  • Fretboard & bridge
  • Setting the Intonation
  • Humidity & temperature

See FAQ "Instrument Maintenance" for details.

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Instrument Shopping

We have the best price in the area on Cordoba Protege series acoustic instruments. Let us correctly size you, recommend and help with:

SMALL HANDS, SHORT FINGERS AND POOR FLEXIBILITY

Need small fret width & height:

  • Guilele, 1/4, 1/2 or 3/4 classical guitar or a mini
  • Ukulele

BIG HANDS, WIDE OR THICK FINGERS, POINTED FINGER PADS AND FINGER SWELLING

Need wider string-spacing:

  • Baritone or tenor ukulele
  • Full-size classical guitar
  • Bass

CONSIDER A NYLON STRING CLASSICAL GUITAR OR UKULELE

  • Small neck/body options are ideal for small-handed children & adults 
  • Costs less than electric guitar, amp & accesories 
  • Nylon strings are wider, easier to play & control
  • Wider string spacing for finger independence
  • Mellow, quiet sound

WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN A BEGINNER'S INSTRUMENT

  • Quality brand name
  • A two-way truss rod
  • No neck curve (side view)
  • No cracks or cloudy finish at neck joint or bridge
  • Strings close to the neck and easy to hold down
  • Stays in tune - ask for the string slack to be stretched out

USE CAUTION BUYING USED OR ONLINE

Guitars are like cars in that they need a thorough, detailed, time-consuming tune up (called a "setup") to work well. Like a car dealer, an official instrument dealer has properly trained technicians to keep your guitar playing and sounding at peak performance. It is easy for the novice buyer to get a "great deal" and miss issues caused from:

  • Temperature
  • Humidity
  • Misuse
  • Poor quality
  • Faulty wiring
  • Chinese fakes
  • In-experienced, poorly-trained technicians
Instrument Types

Instrument descriptions with photos below help you decide what instrument to play.

 

ACOUSTIC GUITAR

  • Mini, Grand Concert, Dreadnaught, Jumbo size
  • Hardest strings to press
  • Smaller string spacing
  • 6 metal strings
  • Pickguard on most
  • Hollow body
  • Soundhole

 

CLASSICAL GUITAR

  • Recommended for beginners
  • Guilele, 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, 7/8 and full size
  • 2 rectangular head slots
  • Easiest strings to press
  • 3 of 6 strings are nylon
  • Wider string spacing
  • No pick guard
  • Hollow body
  • Soundhole

 

ELECTRIC BASS

  • Perfect for big hands, long or thick fingers
  • Thin body and long neck
  • Single or double cutaway
  • Plays the lowest notes
  • 4 or 5 thick metal strings
  • Widest string spacing
  • Amp & cable needed
  • Rectangular pickups
  • Pickguard on some
  • No soundhole
  • Solid body

 

ELECTRIC GUITAR

  • Thin body that is heavy
  • Single or double cutaway
  • Easy strings to press
  • All 6 strings are metal
  • Amp & cable needed
  • Rectangular pickup
  • Pickguard on some
  • Solid body usually
  • No soundhole

 

 

UKULELE

  • A starter instrument for children age 5 and up
  • Perfect for children & adults with short fingers
  • Soprano, concert, tenor & baritone sizes
  • Looks like a minature acoustic guitar
  • Easiest strings to press
  • 4 nylon strings
  • Hollow body
  • Soundhole

Visit FAQ "Instrument Shopping" for even more info. Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Lessons

Call (712) 250-4398 to inquire about lesson openings.

DISCOVER WHY SO MANY CHOOSE SOMERS GUITAR

  • Carroll, IA (Mon - Thurs)
  • Atlantic, IA (Friday)
  • Acoustic instruments
  • Strings & accessories
  • Instrument maintenance
  • Quality private lessons for beginners to advanced
  • Practice expectations (see "Practice" FAQ)
  • In-studio & Skype lessons
  • Live music for events
  • Voluntary annual student program
  • Clean studios, waiting area & restrooms, A/C, parking, smoke & pet-free

EARLIEST AGE TO START LESSONS

  • Guitar - age 6
  • Ukulele - age 6
  • Bass - age 10

PEAK HOUR LESSONS (3 - 9 pm)

  • Meet 25-minutes, weekly, same day & time

NON-PEAK HOUR LESSONS (11 am - 3 pm)

  • Usually meet weekly, the same day & time but can meet as needed

SUMMER-ONLY LESSONS

  • register any time of year
  • perfect for those who are too busy during the school year due to sports, etc

CAN I KEEP MY SPOT IF I STOP FOR A MONTH(S) OR SUMMER? 

Yes - if you pay to retain it

  • Otherwise, the time is usually filled by (1) existing students, (2) waiting list people, (3) or the public
  • You are welcome to return if we have an opening
  • We suggest Skype lessons when you are away

Studies show 70% of students who take the summer off quit because they forget too much and lose interest. We encourage lessons all year long and take 8 weeks off a year (around holiday times and months with a 5th week) so students still get a break.

THE WAITING LIST

  • Ask to be put on the list when there are no openings

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Lesson Attendance

STUDENTS RESERVE THE SAME LESSON DAY & TIME

  • No credits or refunds for missed lessons
  • Our full studio schedule can not accommodate for make-ups or reschedules
  • Leaves of Absence During Peak Hours (3 to 9 pm) - retain your slot by paying for the month(s) absent

TEACHER CANCELLATION

We reschedule when the teacher is absent. Also:

  • The teacher cancels in-studio lessons or offers Skype lessons during your regular day/time for a student who is sick, has bed bugs, lice, hand warts, smells of tobacco or cat, or had contact with a either that day due to Guy's allergy.
  • Weather Closings - are announced via text and email. We do NOT close because schools do
  • Webcam Lessons - may be available when time or bad weather does not permit travel

LESSON TERMINATION

  • Clients give 30-day notice
  • Returning students - placed on the waiting list
  • Misbehavior - if the (1) student does not practice and/or (2) the student, parent, or guardian become disruptive, disrespectful or does not follow Somers Guitar policy and/or (3) cause damage to the teacher including but not limited to equipment, furnishings, or lost time then the teacher reserves the right to terminate lesson(s) without refund and hold the person(s) responsible for damages. The teacher alone defines what constitutes misbehavior.

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Lesson Calendar

NO LESSONS 8 WEEKS ANNUALLY

Studies show 70% of students who take the summer off quit because they forget too much and lose interest. We encourage lessons all year long and take 8 weeks off a year (around holiday times and months with a 5th week) so students still get a break. Therefore:

  • 4 months have 3 lessons (Nov, Dec, Jan & July)
  • All other months have 4 lessons

2017 NO LESSONS ON

  • Jan. 1 - 10 (New Year)
  • Mar. 29 - 31 (5th Wk)
  • May 29 (Memorial Day)
  • May 30 - June 1 (5th Wk)
  • June 30 - July 9 (Summer Break)
  • Aug. 29 - Sep. 3 (5th Wk)
  • Sep. 4 (Labor Day)
  • Oct. 30 - 31 (5th Wk)
  • Nov. 15 - 23 (Thanksgiving)
  • Dec. 22- 31 (Christmas)
  • Jan. 1 - 9 (Winter Break 2018)

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Lesson Rates & Fees

LESSON RATES & DUE DATES

Payments are paid in full in advance by the 25th.

  • Hourly - $40
  • Monthly - $75
  • Semester - $300 due in December, April & August
  • Annual - $900 due Dec.

FEES

  • Annual Registration ($50)
  • Returned Check ($30)
  • Late Payment ($15)
  • No 30-Day Notice of Termination ($75)

ANNUAL REVIEW FOR LESSON RATES & FEES

As business costs increase we raise the Annual Registration Fee before considering raising lesson rates. The last lesson rate increase was in 2014 and previously in 2009. Costs determining rates:

  • Rent
  • Labor
  • Insurance
  • Equipment
  • Operations
  • E-commerce
  • Administration
  • Knowledge base
  • Audio & print music
  • Lesson preparation time
  • Annual student program
  • Professional development
  • Building improvements & maintenance

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Live Music

Guy & Mikayla Somers perform primarily in the Southwestern and Central, Iowa region.

They provide...

LIVE MUSIC FOR

  • Cocktail hour
  • Community
  • Corporate
  • Private events
  • Restaurant
  • Winery

ARRIVAL TIME

  • 30 to 60 minutes before

APPROPRIATE ATTIRE

  • Formal – dress or suit/tie
  • Smart casual – suit/no tie
  • Biz casual – slacks/tie
  • Casual – jeans and a polo

EQUIPMENT

  • Quality sound system
  • 100 ft. extension chord

MUSIC SELECTIONS

  • Tell us a style(s) and we will pick the songs
  • Finalize song requests 90 days prior to event
  • Custom arrangements - $50 each

STYLES

  • Classical
  • Sacred
  • Jazz
  • Pop
  • Soft rock
  • Blues

 ________________________

You provide...

BREAKS & REFRESHMENTS

  • Water
  • Hourly 10-minute break
  • Meal with 4 hour booking (including travel, setup, breakdown)

DIRECTIONS

  • Any special instructions
  • Site contact person
  • Address
  • Phone
  • Email

MUSIC AREA NEEDS

  • Armless chair(s)
  • Outlets or a generator
  • Space between musicians and guests

PAYMENT

  • Deposit to secure date
  • Balance due at event

WEATHER COVER

To protect equipment from:

  • Extreme heat
  • Lightning
  • Sunlight
  • Wind
  • Rain

Call (712) 250-4398 for booking.

Locations & Hours

CARROLL, IA

 

HOURS

  • Monday - Thursday 11 am to 9 pm

MAILING ADDRESS

  • PO Box 824, Carroll, IA 51401

STUDIO LOCATION

  • 205 E. 6th Street (map), Carroll, IA
  • Corner of Hwy. 30 & Court
  • In the strip mall
  • 1 block east of Walgreen's
  • Guitar image on door
  • Park in the lot

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

ATLANTIC, IA

  • Open Friday for lessons by appointment
  • 106 W. 9th Street (map)
  • Atlantic, IA 50022
  • 2 blocks south of Casey's
  • Between Poplar & Locust
  • Park on street facing east
  • Do not use neighbor's driveway
  • Enter west door and go downstairs

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Payment Methods

WE ACCEPT:

  • Cash
  • Check
  • PayPal
  • Visa, MC, Disc, AmerX debit and credit cards
  • 30, 60 & 90 Day Financing - on qualifying purchases of $300 and up

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Practice

PROGRESS DEPENDS ON

  • Correct size & type of instrument
  • Consistent weekly lessons
  • Student aptitude/interest
  • Student/teacher dynamic
  • Parental encouragement
  • Physical ability
  • Playing publicly
  • Ample practice time
  • Correct practice habits
  • An equipped, setup practice area

PRACTICE AREA SETUP WITH

Equipment:

  • Audio playing device
  • Chair without arms
  • Good lighting
  • Music stand
  • Metronome
  • Instrument
  • Footstool
  • Amplifier
  • Cable
  • Tuner
  • Strap
  • Picks
  • Books
  • Capo
  • Paper
  • Pencil
  • Sharpener

POOR PRACTICE LEADS TO

  • Feelings of inadequacy
  • Forgetfulness
  • Frustration
  • Quitting

WE NUTURE PRACTICE WITH

  • The student's goals
  • Student responsibility
  • Rewards student likes
  • Practice expectations
  • Voluntary student concert
  • A positive outlook that everyone can achieve
  • Encouragement to play for family and friends
  • A structured approach based on learning style

PRACTICE REQUIREMENTS

Practice at least 4 days a week. When developing callouses shorter practices more often are better. Focus on quality to make quantity productive:

  • Ages 6 - 7 (20 minutes)
  • Ages 8 - 9 (25 mins)
  • Ages 10 - 11 (30 mins)
  • Ages 12 (45 mins)
  • Ages 13 & up (60 mins)

We encourage exceeding the minimum practice standards.  

SET PRACTICE DAYS & TIMES

Have a practice schedule and keep it before, during or after:

  • School or work
  • Break times
  • Study halls
  • Homework
  • Meals
  • Bath or shower times

PRACTICE REMINDERS

  • Place on calender, post-it, email, phone, iPad or iPod
  • Children can use a kitchen timer to know how long to practice

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Webcam Lessons

WEBCAM LESSONS ARE GREAT FOR

  • When out of town
  • Saving on travel time
  • Bad weather or sick days
  • Intermediate and advanced stringed instrument lessons

WEBCAM LESSONS ARE NOT GOOD FOR

  • Beginner stringed instrument lessons

WEBCAM LESSONS NEED

  • Tune before lesson
  • Quiet Room
  • No distractions
  • Lesson supplies
  • Desk Lamp - lighting the student from the front
  • Webcam & microphone
  • High-speed internet
  • Download Skype or use Facetime
  • Skype users add "somersguitar" as contact
  • Facetime users add Guy's icloud email address
  • Weekly Update Windows & Skype
  • No other programs open
  • 4 or Less Icons on The Desktop - too many icons distort and disconnect Skype audio and video. (We do not give refunds, credits or reschedules for technical problems on your end).

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Student Program

Carroll, IA - Sunday, April 30th, 2017, 1:30 PM, Carroll Heath Center, 2241 N. West Street, free and open to the public.

  • Band performance students arrive - 11:30 PM to sound check & practice
  • Solo performance students arrive - 12:30 PM sound check & practice
  • Dress - casual, shirts without graphics
  • Music - chosen by student, family-friendly
  • Format - voluntary, low pressure, open-mic
  • Who - students completing 1+ years

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

Workshops

We customize to your needs. Frequently requested topics:

  • Jazz band guitar & bass
  • Keys and using capos
  • Music career & business
  • Music styles
  • Nashville number system
  • Reading tab & grids
  • Scales & modes
  • School programs
  • Song publishing
  • Strum & picking patterns
  • Worship band

Questions? Call (712) 250-4398.

• About somers guitar •

About Guy

Guy Somers is an exceptional college-trained musician and teacher. His experience & attitude make learning fun and understandable. Career highlights include:

He loves aesthetics, creativity, function and purpose. His hobbies are soup-making, loose leaf teas and landscaping. He lives in Atlantic, Iowa with his wife who owns Somers Photography. They have four children who are all talented musicians.

See FAQ for more info or call (712) 250-4398 to inquire about acoustic instrument sales and service, lessons, or live music.