About 5 years ago, Shawn walks into my guitar lessons studio. He was just starting out on guitar and knew a few things, but mainly he just had a dream: to write, play and perform thrash metal at the elite level like his idols: Metallica, Megadeth, Exodus, Testament, et al. So away we went: he was only 14 but wow did this kid practice!!! He learned everything I threw at him, and then some! And when I get the opportunity to work with someone like this, I get to be a part of developing them into a true professional performer and songwriter and it doesn’t take as long as many people think. It’s really quite a thrill to see and I enjoy it every bit as much as performing and composing myself. As a guitar teacher, I stress that hard work, singular focus, and the right information from me along with coaching on live performance and an insider’s perspective on how the maniacal music biz really works and how to navigate it. This photo was taken at the Masquerade after one of Shawn’s shows. You can hear him play in the videos I’m about to post.

Here, Shawn plays some off the cuff lead over backing rhythm tracks by Andy James which you can purchase here:

metal lessons atlanta

metal guitar lessons

One thing I learned playing and touring: the people to watch are the ones who turn heads when they’re not even trying… just warming up, at sound check, or line check before the band plays… when people stop their conversations or looking at their phones and immediately pay attention. It’s a very organic, visceral thing that hits you right in the chest: great music has that power. When Shawn plugs in at my guitar lessons studio, anyone who’s coming or going stops and listens. And it’s the same thing live. You just feel it immediately, there’s nothing contrived or forced; you’re just listening to someone who absolutely loves what he’s doing: who lives and breathes metal music and believes in every note he’s playing. And when you hear it, you immediately know that person is going to find success in music beyond guitar lessons, it’s only a matter of time and the right opportunities!




Shawn Staszko thrash metal

Andy James

You can catch Shawn Staszko and his band Homocidal bringing the metal mayhem to “the Basement” in east Atlanta, Monday April 15th!

Guitar lessons