Guitar Player Profiles

About Alex:

 I’m Alex and I am a current third year undergraduate student at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. I studied Guitar with john between the ages of 11 and 17, achieving Grade 8 Trinity Rockschool Guitar around the age of 16 and I have played Guitar in and around the Reading and London areas for many years, playing for functions and pit bands.

I currently study composition at Guildhall, along with a second study in opera singing, however thanks to John I still find the time to keep my skills up with the Guitar

Guitars and Style:

I currently own and play a Fender Standard Strat (limited edition) and a Schecter Custom S-1. My style, thanks both to my composition training and to John, has often fluctuated between many styles, but with a main focus on Jazz and Fusion nowadays. My playing style has been slowly progressing to a more fluid, legato style of playing.


The training I received in my guitar lessons with John were instrumental in leading me towards a rounded form of musicianship which certainly led to me being accepted into Guildhall. His style of teaching is the kind that encourages a joy for one’s music (both playing and writing) and also a curiosity towards how one furthers their art.

About Matthew:

Hello, I’m Matthew and am currently a developing guitarist. With the help of John I have been working my way through the Trinity Rockschool electric guitar grades for a bit over 5 years ever since Grade 1. At the moment I am studying for my the Grade 5 exam and in the long run we are aiming to get me to the professional standards of Grade 8 in a few years time.

Future plans:

In terms of career aspirations I’m not completely certain what I want to do, but I believe being able to play guitar is a very useful skill. Being able to get grades six and above earns UCAS points which help to get into univeristies, which will be very helpful. Having the skill and the qualifications is a admirable thing which when applying to things such as university I will add to my application. When I go to university and eventually when I begin work, playing guitar will both be a great hobby and a valuable tool to have.

Overall playing guitar is amazing fun and at the moment is just a hobby, but in the future having the possibility to join a band and play some small gigs could also earn me a bit of money. The skills I currently have wouldn’t have been possible without John’s lessons. Every lesson i have a lot of fun whilst learning and developing many skills in the process.

My Guitars:

I own four different guitars, with my main being an ibanez s520 which is a dream to play. My favourite types of music are different variations of rock as I find them most enjoyable to play and listen to. Through playing guitar I have discovered many different bands, which I listen to and learn to play some of their music, such as ACDC, Metallica and Muse.


Learning guitar with John has been an amazing experience. Since the first lesson he has been extremely warm and welcoming as a person, the sustained positive atmosphere makes learning guitar a very enjoyable and productive experience. In terms of being a guitar teacher, his depth of knowledge is astounding and listening to him play examples of what I’m learning is like hearing the original track. He has both the highest quality equipment and skills, which has helped me to reach my potential as a guitarist. 

About Rohan:

My name is Rohan and I’m a 15 year old guitarist and drummer; on guitar I am grade 8 and on drums I am grade 7 undergraduate. I actually got into guitar from a video game (guitar hero) since it seemed to inspire me, however listening to a lot of 80’s-90’s music when I was younger also did help due to the insane guitar solos and cool riffs. Soon after getting inspired by guitar hero, my parents bought me my first guitar when I was about 8; I didn’t know exactly what to do with it since I had no one to instruct me apart from a beginners hand book which I couldn’t even read! About 6 months later, I found out my uncle was secretly an incredible guitarist so he gave me some chords to practice and so when I saw him the next time he visited I would have them nailed. I eventually got the hang of chords and all new chords seemed to become easier for me, so I started to get lessons at my primary school; they’re were good, but group lessons didn’t exactly make things challenging enough. We decided to look for a teacher outside of school who taught private lessons, and someone recommended a strange man called Jon Parkin…

I have now had lessons with Jon for about 5 years and I have recently passed my grade 8 to become a teacher to pass down my knowledge of guitar. Jon has been an amazing teacher and mentor to me, and I have made huge progress since I started; starting on grade 4 when I was 10 and made it grade 8 by the time I was 14. I highly recommend Jon above other teachers; you can even choose what you would like to learn which is very helpful when it comes to writing your own music since you learn the techniques that you require to compose a piece to your specification. Jon is very good at teaching people at a fast pace without dropping any quality along the way, making his lessons ideal for anyone who would like to get good at the guitar quickly at a high standard.

Future Plans:

In the future, I would like to go on and teach guitar/drums and possibly also be a session drummer/guitarist. I am in a band as a drummer and since I can play guitar, it helps me write songs/parts for the guitarists due to my extra knowledge.