For lessons or bookings, please call : 301-875-5085
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For lessons or bookings, please call : 301-875-5085

World-Class Guitar Lessons

In Bethesda, MD

Learn Guitar from Master Guitarist Carey T. Smith

We here at Blue Raccoon Tunes aim to offer you a more personalized alternative to large, corporatized guitar instruction. We welcome players of all levels who wish to learn guitar in nearly every style of music, including classical, jazz, blues, bluegrass, country, folk and rock. Our sole teacher, Carey Smith, a professional jazz musician with over 20 years experience teaching and performing, addresses your specific needs. Whether you are a beginner with limited exposure to music or an experienced player looking to expand your understanding of music and the instrument, Carey will empower you to advance.

Our principal goal is always to excite you for playing, not practicing, music. While musical achievement surely demands practice, the student motivated by the pleasure culled from performing his craft will, we believe, enjoy more of music’s gifts, including self-confidence, healthful self-discipline, humility and a deserved sense of satisfaction. The advancing guitarist practices to play and plays to be happy. Blue Raccoons love to play and believe that you will too!

Our classes are conveniently offered in our Bethesda, MD studio. We also offer one-on-one live online guitar lessons via Skype. For more information, call us today at 301-875-5085 or click here to contact us online.

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Individual Guitar Lessons

Whether you’ve always wanted to play guitar or have played for years, Carey will engineer a program of study for you that will advance your abilities. Our current gang of students ranges from 16 to 70 years of age and covers the spectrum of experience with guitar playing. All lessons are held here at our studio in Bethesda, MD. Weekly lessons are recommended.

In addition to individual lessons, students are given the opportunity to perform at our seasonal concerts, called “Gazes,” and to participate in bi-weekly jam sessions with our other students. We believe in the inestimable value of performance experience and have created a welcoming community of guitarist who love to play.


1-hour in-studio guitar lesson: $80 Bi-weekly guitar jam sessions (90 minutes; limited to 2-3 guitar students; scheduled to accommodate participants): $80/student
Book an individual guitar lesson »

Group Guitar Lessons

If you have a friend with whom you already play or if you and a friend are interested in beginning to play guitar, you may sign up for group lessons. Such group study allows you always to have someone with whom you can put to use the skills that you are learning together. By choosing a repertory of tunes suitable for guitar duo (or trio), you will supply for yourself the incentive to practice those matters of rhythm, melody and harmony that each tune demands. You’ll practice to play!


1-hour in-studio group guitar lesson: $60 per student
Learn about our groups »

Online Guitar Lessons

We offer online guitar lessons via Skype. If you’re in the habit of using any of the many pre-recorded guitar lessons available online, we’d encourage you to try a live online lesson with Carey. Pre-recorded lessons assume the needs of the student and offer the illusion of musical progression through short digestible bits, e.g. learn this tune, learn this scale, learn this chord. Such lessons deprive the student of the bigger picture, that is, the regular systems and musical conventions at work behind the construction of all tunes, scales and chords. By introducing you to these systems, Carey will empower you discover on your own all of the scales and chords necessary to play the tunes you love.


1-hour online guitar lesson via Skype: $85 per student
Schedule a Skype lesson »

Left-Hand Technique for Guitar and the Magic of Overtraining

Strength constitutes the essential, and widely unrecognized, key to effective guitar technique. For the guitarist who has never addressed this principle in his playing, newly trained arms, wrists and hands will produce his musical ideas with a precision and effortlessness that astonish. Locking in on the groove becomes inevitable.   Just as strength is the key to technique, overtraining is ...
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Blue Raccoon Events

Live jazz at Rehoboth Art League
August 20, 2016

Carey will perform with a trio at the Rehoboth Art League on Saturday, 20 August, 2016 from 4 pm – 6pm. He will be accompanied by Shawn Simon on bass and Anthony Santiago on drums.





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Personalized guitar instruction in Montgomery County

Recognizing the natural attraction to music that is part of our human experience, we here at Blue Raccoon Tunes guide and nurture the passion of our diverse guitar students, from the beginner to the experienced player. The Blue Raccoons offer opportunities for every student to perform in volunteer concerts at local retirement homes. Call or email for further information! 301-875-5085

Schedule a get-acquainted call »
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