With years of musical experience and a kind, patient approach, the instructors of Columbia Guitar Lessons help beginning and intermediate students learn to strum chords and play solos on guitar. They travel to students’ homes for convenient onsite lessons and can provide guitars if necessary. Private one-on-one lessons are available, as well as small-group lessons for siblings or friends.
During the mid-1970s, two touring musicians named Ed Blanton Jr. and Bubba Willis opened the original Encore Music to share their vast knowledge with aspiring tunesmiths and to stock a variety of quality instruments that would rival the inventory of a large franchise store. Though successful, the partners eventually went their separate ways in 1986. Ed Blanton Jr.’s son, Ed Blanton III, revived Encore Music two decades later with the same goals in mind, calling upon his experiences in the East Coast punk-rock scene to motivate young musicians and mohawks to reach for the sky. In its current incarnation, Encore Music now offers music lessons in guitar, bass, piano, and drums, and stocks all the equipment necessary to create an at-home recording studio.
Ax-prentices can visit the Greenville Guitar Academy—which is under the guidance of owner Stephen Williams and his experienced staff—to wail, shred, riff, and strum their way from atonal ignorance to the heights of music nirvana. Half-hour private lessons are available for any experience level. Secure from acoustic interruption in one of the academy’s practice spaces, novice players and road-hardened rockers alike can perfect their jazz, blues, metal, slide, and other string styles with guidance from seven personable and knowledgeable instructors.
Preschool Plus provides a fun, safe, and stimulating environment for 3, 4, and 5-year-olds to preheat their brains before the emotional and social rigors of life in kindergarten. With 25 years of experience as an early-childhood teacher and director, Kathy Hughes leads a team of certified educators that focus on cultivating the cognitive and developmental needs of each child. Although each instructor is equipped with eyes in the back of her head, a small teacher-to-student ratio ensures each child is nurtured and cared for. Based on the retention theory of the "Song That Never Ends," monthly themes are incorporated into every section of the curriculum. Each classroom also contains interest centers geared toward literacy, science, music, and how to properly eat an overstuffed burrito.
At Iron and Grace, butterflies can emerge from their corporeal cocoons in kettlebell and Pilates classes that help to build strong and balanced bodies with an emphasis on functional-fitness training. The kettlebell program’s full-body exercises exemplify this approach, eschewing repetitive movements in favor of motor-recruitment patterns centered by the iron cannonball. Kettlebell exercises work the entire body as students hoist and swing them by their attached handle, increasing both cardio and muscular endurance and helping to make everyday tasks such as bicycling and climbing corporate ladders that much easier. Instructor Chad Sexton holds four-hour training sessions a week for small groups of six students or fewer, teaching them the essential moves of his beloved discipline before guiding them onward to the gym’s more advanced kettlebell classes.
One of South Carolina’s oldest piano stores, Rice Music House has specialized in ticklish ivories since 1924 and offers a wide range of classes for piano enthusiasts of all experience levels. The piano and keyboard discovery class introduces aspiring musicians and forgetful Chopins to the basics of practical play and music theory. All equipment and instruction materials are provided, but students can opt to bring their own keyboard or instruction manual. Classes are held at Rice Music House and hold an average of six to 10 students. No previous musical or roadie experience is required for the lessons, which are offered in the daytime and evenings.