Guitar Instructor

SA.Magellan.WhitsittEDITWEBI earned an independent degree in Music with honors at Washington & Lee University in 1974, but I’ve never had a guitar lesson.

What I have had is time with older players. Lots of it.

I’ve spend most of the past fifty years walking in the wilderness of learning to play Blues and slide guitar, old-time banjo, and fiddle.

During that time, I promise you, I’ve fallen into every swamp, been caught in every thicket, and dropped two wheels into every ditch out there.

As a teacher, it’s my job to point you down the right road and spare you that walk.

– Scott Ainslie

Private, Skype Guitar Lessons, & Music Camps


Scott began teaching at the summer music camps in 1995 with Common Ground On The Hill in Maryland; Augusta Heritage Days’ Blues Week in West Virginia; the Summer Acoustic Music Week in New Hampshire; and The Swannanoa Gathering in North Carolina. In the years since, he has returned to those camps and Euro-Blues Week in Northampton, England.

He is a masterful teacher. Not all good players are.

Scott’s goal as a teacher is to map the territory before you and point you down the best path. He works to offer you a comprehensive understanding of the technical and physical skills that will help you reach your musical goals, while teaching a skill that is related to what you already know and is well within your grasp.

While Scott will teach particular repertoire pieces, his focus is on technique. With proper right and left hand technique, and an understanding of standard and various open tunings, you will have the wherewithal to pursue music, wherever it leads you.

To arrange private lessons in person or via Skype, contact Scott.

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Upcoming Events

  1. The White Horse – Black Mountain NC

    May 7 @ 8:00 pm - 10:30 pm
  2. House Concert – Greenville SC

    May 8 @ 7:30 pm - 10:00 pm
  3. The Cary – Double-Bill with Walter Parks

    May 9 @ 8:00 pm - 10:30 pm

Scott Ainslie plays his arrangement one of the last songs that Stephen Foster published, Hard Times Come Again No More (1857) on a Froggy Bottom H-12 Guitar sporting Glenn Carson's custom engraved pearl (appropriately inspired by 19th Century banjo inlays and pearl carvings). The guitar is in Open-D tuning [D-A-D-F#-A-D] and is played here with finger picks. The microphones used to record the guitar are roughly three feet from the instrument: a Neumann TLM 102 and Neumann KM 184. The sustain and balance of the instrument have not been enhanced at all. This instrument is on sale at 20% off from now until midnight on Christmas Eve (EST). More details are available at Happy Holidays one and all.

Sound Stage-Recording of the Month
Ainslie sings and plays with confidence and understanding...The recording is so natural you might think Ainslie has been imported into your listening room.
Rad Bennett
Sound Stage Network, Dec. 2014