These are the places I find myself recommending or visiting frequently...

Music Instruction, Magazines, CDs, Books and DVDs

Adventure Music:
A label Mike Marshall is associated with, this label is adding to the high quality music available from Brazil.

Acoustic Disc:
David Grisman has enjoyed a 45 year career as mandolinist, composer, band-leader and record producer. This is a site where you can find the fruits of a life in music. Dawg Music and rare music, available on CDs and digital downloads. Check out the free daily downloads, sample the new releases and plan to spend some time here.

Berklee Press:
Amazing books for the musically motivated that will prompt your thinking, creativity and musicianship.

Baby Jane Records:
Located in Denver, this is the label and source for the third Mother Folkers CD, "Alive at 25." Visit them online and listen to or download the full album and check out their diverse recordings. "...BabyJane is about music. It is about our love of music, the process of creating it, helping others to fulfill their sonic visions, and bringing new experiences to our supporters. We are creating a way for audio artists to record, mix, master, duplicate and distribute their work in a supportive environment where the primary motive is to make good art. You will find many types of audio projects on our label. Our intent is to transcend musical genres and bring people the highest quality musical experience..."

Boss Virtual Pedal Board:
"Want to test drive a bunch of BOSS pedals without leaving the house? Then log on to our new BOSS Virtual Pedal Board, where you can interact with nearly the entire line of BOSS stompbox effects while listening to playing examples from a variety of music styles. VPB-2 is so much fun that Adobe made it a recent "Site of the Day" winner. Coffee, bathrobe, and slippers not included."

CD Baby:
Great resource for independent artists.

CD Roots:
Music for the musically adventurous.

Django Books:
Diverse resources and delights for the gypsy jazz fan, including John McGann’s gyspy-jazz mandolin lessons.

Dr. Banjo (Pete Wernick): provides the ultimate in instructional materials for jammers on any bluegrass instrument, as well as "Jam Camps." His site has a wealth of information for jammers, students and teachers on any instrument. Most frequently recommended: "Visitor Favorites," "Instruction" and "Store" tabs especially.

Elderly Instruments:
Great source for CDs, books, DVDs; listservs are very informative.

Homespun Tapes:
Great lessons and one of the most cost-effective ways to learn.

Just Jazz Guitar:
For the aspiring or serious jazz guitarist.

Sher Music:
Favorite source of "Fake Books" and other high quality books, with wonderful "Tune Search Feature."

Local Stores and Businesses

Able Body Massage: (970) 308-2756
Thanks to Paul St. Germain, I can still play. He's great for all ailments, but his "musician maintenance" is top shelf. A musician himself, he knows the effects of playing on the body and how to remove those stresses and prevent wear and tear. He's skilled in following techniques: Swedish/relaxation, neuromuscular/deep Tissue and sports massage. I thought he should have called his business "Float Home," because that's what happens to me. I feel like I'm smiling on a molecular level when I leave.

Bashkin Guitars:
Bashkin guitars are highly acclaimed acoustic guitars made right here in Fort Collins by luthier Michael Bashkin. His web site offers a glimpse into beautiful craftmanship, woods and inlays (see "The Gallery"). If you're looking for a fine acoustic guitar, visit this site.

Boomer Music:
"Boomers" rents instruments with option to purchase. They stock a huge selection of sheet music, scores, Sher music titles (see above) and gear. They can special order and usually have it by the next Thursday.

Colorado Drum and Percussion:
Clark Bennett and knowledgeable staff can help you with a full range of drums, percussion instruments and instructional materials.

The Denver Folklore Center:
Owner Harry Tuft, along with Jeff, Nick and Sam staff the store where you can learn a lot just by browsing. Huge selection of CDs, Books, instructional materials, gear and acoustic Instruments. The pickin' bench and ambience is restorative and restful. I grew up hanging out here, and it's one my favorite places on the planet. A few blocks north of Evans in the Denver University area, on Pearl Street.

Finest CDS:
Marc Cheatum and staff run this friendly and informed store in Campus West. They can order almost anything in quickly, and have a wide selection of new and used music, vinyl, CDs, and a kiosk for mixing your own tunes.

Gem Picks: (970) 222-6301,
Roger Layton ("Old R.C.") makes picks out of everything. A creative person who treasures rare and beautiful rocks, some of my students buy his picks because they're beautiful and/or they like the sound they produce. I prefer the ones he makes out of a green bowling ball, as they're thick and get a warm, rich tone. He can direct you to the stores that sell them, or make you a custom one. I like the one he made from old ivory for classical mandolin. You'll love this guy, too.

The Olde Town Pickin' Parlor:
Kit Simon owns this Arvada Store, just North of I-70 and Wadsworth. He has a wide range and quantity of high quality acoustic instruments, gear, instructional materials. Visiting this store gives me the same feeling I used to have has a kid when it was time to visit the zoo!

Spotlight Music:
Rob Curci, his family and staff run this excellent store. For decades, Rob has been the go-to guy for anything related to gear and electric guitars. They carry a wide selection of of acoustic and electric guitars, amps, Roland products, gear and have a full repair service.

The Folks Who Made This Website

All of the folks that created this website are guitarists or mandolinists, and all but one have musical children. They are wonderful people who are a joy to work with, too.

Caddis Technologies, Inc.:
E-Commerce, web technology solutions, data management systems, and much more.

Condit Marketing Communications:
Advertising, sales promotion and public relations.

Sam Cooper Design:
"...We are a design Studio. We love beautiful design. But we are most impressed with design that is also smart, strategic, and effective."


Acoustic Traveler, John McEuen: See: (XM Satellite Radio)

"African music at its best, presented with rigor and style by the experts at the Afropop Worldwide radio show. Immerse yourself in Africa's music…"

Bob Dylan's Theme Time Radio Hour:
Insight and range of music that only Bob Dylan could provide. (XM Satellite Radio)

“Every etown show is taped in front of a live audience and features performances from many of today's top musical artists as well as conversations and information about the world around us…”

Public radio station in Fort Collins, Colorado.

One of the best jazz stations in the country, broadcasting and streaming from Denver, Colorado. DJs who gently educate and inform; a wide variety of music, including gospel, R & B and brazilian.

Prairie Home Companion:
Humorous and thought-provoking narrative, great “house-band” and guest artists.

World Café (on NPR)
"Since 1991, World Cafe® has emerged as the premiere public radio showcase for contemporary music serving up an eclectic blend that includes indie rock, singer-songwriters, folk, alternative country, blues, and world music..."

Online Mandolin Resources

Mandolin Café:
The mandolin hub of the world, news, lessons, mp3 library, blog, discussion boards, much more.

The Classical Mandolin Society of America:
Not just for classical mandolinists...

Rich DelGrosso:
Gregarious, talented and informative. His Hal Leonard mandolin books are my favorite recommendation for beginners. "Mandolin Blues" is a priceless work of knowledge from a lifetime of experience, research and love of the blues...we are very fortunate to have it!
Resources for the electric mandolinist.

Marilyn Mair:
Classical mandolinists and choro fans are known to spend days here.

Jazz Mando:
Focuses on the mandolinists wanting to learn and apply jazz concepts and techniques.

Mandolin Magazine:
Interesting articles and tunes to play for all levels of mandolinists.

Mandolin buyer's guide, mandolin artist interviews, a wealth of helpful information for players.


Marilyn Mair (Choro articles):
Extremely informative site with articles about choro artists, CD reviews and much more. I think of it as a "portal to choro."

Cliff Korman:
see the "Classroom" section. Co-author (with Nelson Faria) of the "Inside the Brazilian Rhythm Section."

The Samba Store:
Huge selection of brazilian music and books available here.



"Transcription software" can change the speed of music, without changing the pitch. Slow music down so you can "get it in your head," and then play with it at a reasonable tempo for learning, increasing the speed gradually. Or, speed it up past your comfort zone to improve your playing speed. The Amazing Slow Downer and Nero are both popular.


Jammers in any style will apprectiate Pete Wernick's Jamming Tips. Teachers and learners on any instrument will find much to apply at: Doc's Prescriptions.


Many people say "Touch the Sound" redefines the way they hear. For others it redefines the way they see. Director and cinematographer Thomas Riedelsheimer describes, "hearing images, seeing sound." Take a journey with percussionist Evelyn Glennie, one of the world's foremost musicians, who is also deaf.


Jamming Tips: Teachers and learners on any instrument will find much to apply at: Doc's Prescriptions.


The Fort Collins Public Library has many videos, DVDs and CDs of a musical nature. Netflix has an unbelievable range of DVDS about musicians, live concerts and music instruction. This is a great way to check out products you'd like to buy before you invest.


Improvisation insight, from the Mandolin Cafe, helpful for players of any instrument.


Musicians and non-musicians alike will enjoy Brasileirinho, a documentary about choro, the music that led directly to bossa nova and then samba. Choro was born in the middle of the 19th century when the musicians in Rio started to mix European melodies and music styles like waltz and polka with Afro-Brazilian and native rhythms.