The worldwide community of guitarists and musicians is one of the main reasons why TrueFire is where it is today. With our students’ input and feedback, we stay motivated to continue to expand our library and improve our music e-learning experience. So, while we spend a lot of time highlighting our incredible faculty and content, we think it’s time to move the spotlight on some of our most passionate users.

In this Student Spotlight series, we’ll be showcasing a member of the diverse TrueFire community and sharing their thoughts with you. We hope you find yourself inspired. Ignited we stand!

Student Spotlight: SamStamos

Your Name:

Sam S.

How long have you been a TrueFire Student?

About a year, I think.

Tell us a little bit about yourself as a musician:

Define playin’ 🙂 I started at age 7, took lessons, and learned a few chords and licks, but didn’t progress past that for a dozen years. Then learned more (pentatonic box, a few songs, etc.) Another decade-long plateau learned barre chords and more pent patterns, another decade plateau. Then in 2001 took lessons again, fingerpicking, developed more style, and many different genres. (Rock, Blues, R&B, folk, bluegrass, and Greek music..) Picked up the mandolin. Built a repertoire of cover songs. Joined a band of my and old mates, did some writing. Them covid crashed the band scene, turned to YouTube. Watched and chatted in streams for educational and social contact. Tried several online lesson forums. GMM, JamPlay, several YouTube streamer lesson platforms, and then TrueFire. Went nuts on Cinco de Mayo!

What attracted you to TrueFire at first?

To be honest, I really don’t remember, as this whole “online guitar experience” came about because of the lockdown. The first course that I purchased was Jeff McErlain’s “Pentatonic Deep Dive.” I had been enjoying Jeff’s streams for some time before that. And I was turned on to so many other artists through him. Robben Ford, Corey Congilio, and many more.

What are some of your favorite TrueFire courses or lessons?

To be honest, I own 38 courses and have yet to really dive deep into them. I just haven’t been able to find the time. So far, Jeff McErlain’s courses are my favorite, as those are the only ones I’ve had the time to dive into.

How has TrueFire helped improve your playing?

I have yet to really fully reap the benefits of all the material that I own, so I’d say that I hope that it will help improve my playing in the future in the same way that so many TrueFire instructors have improved their playing. By studying their guitar heroes.

Why do you use TrueFire, and how often?

I’m a student. Not enough, presently!

What is your favorite feature of the TrueFire learning experience?

The existence of TrueFire is my favorite feature. That and the giveaways, which draw me into the site and expose me to a bit of what I’m planning to work on soon.

Who is your favorite TrueFire Educator and why?

It is not really a fair question as it lacks depth of perspective. Jeff McErlain, because he’s spent so much time on the YouTube streams, which drew me into TrueFire in the first place. And his presentation is clear and concise. Or Greg Koch, because “he’s the dude” or Robben Ford, down to Earth and expressive. Tim Lerch, Tim Pierce, Josh Smith, Corey… see what I mean?

What would you like to see more of at TrueFire?

More giveaways! I’m in a pinch here 🙂

Any other comments?

I regret the lack of brevity 🙂

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