Toronto June 2024

A once in a life time musical Canadian adventure

To book this or any other retreat email thomas@theguitarsocial.com

Celine Dion, Neil Young, Bare Naked Ladies, Avril Lavigne, Joni Mitchell, early nougthties two hit wonders LEN, some upstart called Neil Young, proper bands like Blink 182, Celine Dion, LEN… all heroes, all Canadian. 

So guess where we’re going? Canada!! Or, as Joni Mitchell sang it, ohhhhhh Caaaaanadaaaaaaaaa

Dates: 1st of June to 8th of June

Accommodation: A borderline mansion. Rooms are split between shared, single with some low cost sofa bed options too.

Price: £1195 for a double bed of your own in your own room and £995 for a double bed in a twin room. £850 for a spot on a sofa in one of the shared spaces such as the living room or kitchen.

Price does not include: Flights, food eaten outside of the accommodation or any gig tickets.

Price does include: Your ride to and from the airport providing you are on the suggested flight, all breakfasts, workshops, accommodation and a place in the coolest gang in town

Recommended flight: Outbound AC853, departing Heathrow at 8.30am. Inbound AC854, leaving Toronto at 18.25 I’m on both these flights. 

Itinerary

Day 1. We arrive, settle in to our gorgeous home and for those that are awake enough, head out to listen to some live music. Others may wish to get some rest.

Day 2. Workshop: The music of Avril Lavigne followed by a trip to the very hip Kensington Market. Later, we’re heading to the Piston Bar for food and music.

Day 3. Workshop: how Neil Young changed music forever, and three of his best songs. In the evening, live music from Khruangbin where I imagine he will sing his big hit about Texas. We’ll be watching him at the iconic History venue. In Canada. Ohhhhhhh, Caaaaaanadaaaaaa…..

Day 4. Workshop: Joni Mitchell and how she tuned her Guitar, an extended workshop. Later, Thomas hazards a go at doing a walking musical history tour of a town he’s never been to followed by live music downtown. 

Day 5. Workshop: Everything I do, I do it for you; a workshop to figure out if Bryan Adams is shit or not followed by an over view of Leonard Cohens best work.  Later, live music at the historic Massy hall, known throughout the world for its acoustics. Stick your head out of the window now, you’ll probably be able to hear it reverberating. 

Day 6:  Workshop: Anglo/French/Canadian Folk Music. And Celine Dion. Later, its a house party, with food, music, jams and because The Guitar Social recently bought a mini projector which I haven’t used yet and I want to write off as a tax expense, we’re watching Carts of Darkness, a documentary film about some homeless bottle pickers from Toronto that developed the sport of supermarket trolley racing. After, we’ll play music into the night. And maybe race some supermarket trolleys of our own. Day 7. Workshop:  A retrospective of all the songs we have played in the week then we hit the bars and find as much live music as we can ingest because tomorrow we’re flying home, and there’s no point in not being hungover in an airport.

From the Guitar Social Community

The class is run by a group who really understand the principles of learning and the reasons for doing it! Also we are given sensible and realistic targets and outcomes coupled with very helpful practice schedules.
Lindsay, London
Thanks to The Guitar Social , I am living my dream after years of longing to play the guitar but feeling too scared to go for it. I am loving it. The classes are so enjoyable.
Beverley, Birmingham
The lessons are great fun, the resources are excellent and I’m learning more than ever before. On top of that, there are loads of opportunities to get together and play with other students. Best guitar lessons I’ve ever had.
Stevie, London
The Guitar Social is unique, vibrant, edgy, always fun and uplifting. Where else could I get top quality guitar teaching alongside a jam in the park, fun Zoom guitar based games or an inspiring and sociable camping trip.
Helen, Devon
Nicola Cortese
Nicola Cortese
03/02/2022
I started a course in Jan as a beginner with Thomas and I can already play 5 songs!.. with simple chords :) both Thomas and Fiona are really lovely and they really know how to teach whilst having fun! I'd highly recommend dropping at one of their Thursday's open mic! Tons of fun and talent for free!!!
Jonny Pollard
Jonny Pollard
02/02/2022
Very friendly learning environment, was a bit nervous to play with a group having not played socially for many years, but it was super relaxed, and I learnt a lot in the first session. Looking forward to the next session!
Adam J
Adam J
01/02/2022
Had a great time tonight! I joined on to the beginners course a couple weeks late, but Fiona was great at running me up to speed before the class. Tom was a great instructor, and managed to get us to cover lots of ground in a short space of time. The group was super freindly and relaxed, and im looking forward to going back next week!
Jakub Špaček
Jakub Špaček
01/02/2022
Having played guitar in my past within academic environment I have to say The Guitar Social club opened my eyes with their amazing and vibrant atmosphere with company of great people. Lessons are really fun and easy to follow. Feel really motivate just after few classes and my connection to the instrument greatly improved!
Paula Smith
Paula Smith
31/01/2022
Unbelievably great, not kidding.
Marcella Puppini
Marcella Puppini
31/01/2022
This exactly what I was hoping it would be. A fun and engaging way of learning a new instrument at a lovely venue, with great people and great teaching. Thoroughly recommended.
hashtagobi
hashtagobi
31/01/2022
Only been going 2 weeks but it's a great environment with good pacing throughout the lessons. The community is quite helpful + open to learn so it's really a great space for anyone wanting to hone their guitar chops!
Kevin S.
Kevin S.
27/01/2022
Is it a guitar school? A social events group? A music workshop for all ages and abilities? An open, non-judgemental route to performing? A holiday club that includes jamming on guitars around the campfire? Well–it's all these and more. The Guitar Social is built around founder & lead tutor Thomas (plus TGS Business Director, Fiona, originally one of its earliest students). Patient and passionate, Thomas and his relaxed, friendly temperament get the best from beginners to improvers and beyond. Personally for me, one core strength of The Guitar Social is that Thomas realises what most tutors and courses never do – we can all learn fast and well when we play whole songs together and discover as a group how to make them work. Thomas and TGS guest tutors will always tend to teach music theory for guitar, and focus too on scales, chord voicings, correct rhythm, licks, riffs, parts, soloing etc, but with a tendency to make it about the fun and learning gains when students jam together on great songs instead of staring at a white board and not playing much music. Jamming songs in similar or mixed ability groups helps TGS students become functioning musicians who have built useful real world skills and experience across many sessions similar to how working musicians rehearse and workshop songs. And you will have the opportunity to build live experience too if you wish – solo or with your term group or with others of your choice, in a safe, positive environment, with friendly fellow students as your audience. Never any pressure and just one example of where TGS delivers extra value. They are really worth trying. I haven't even done full justice here to all the different activities they do.
stu smith
stu smith
25/01/2022
The coolest club in London!
Colin Taylor
Colin Taylor
25/01/2022
I'm back for my second series of the Joy of the Jam. After not playing with others for over 30 years, these sessions are reminding me just how inspiring and enjoyable jamming can be. Thomas leads the sessions with huge enthusiasm and a great deal of humour. The support of his impressive musical knowledge is ever present - but this never gets in the way of our desire just have fun and be playing.
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