napoleon hill blueprint music
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Napoleon Hill and the Blueprint of Musical Achievement

Tuesday Quotes are short explorations of music, life, and the daily endeavor of practicing classical guitar. Enjoy!


Cherish your visions and your dreams as they are the children of your soul, the blueprints of your ultimate achievements.”

Napoleon Hill

When we hear a tune, and want to play it, there’s a sort of magic at work. When we envision making beautiful music for loved ones, we open a window into a potential future.

Everything that has ever been created started as a thought – an idea. And most everything, at this stage, could be called ridiculous, unlikely, or impossible.

Often, for those of us drawn to music, we can’t say exactly what we’re drawn to. There’s a pull, and we feel it. But what exactly is pulling, we may not be able to say. Or not entirely.

And here is where the reasoning mind can become our most dangerous adversary. We can quickly reason away our pull to music. We can run logical analyses and do cost/benefit comparisons. We can argue and prioritize the pragmatic: time, age, talent, money.

But as Einstein said, “Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts.

We, as intelligent, thinking people, can and must hold the paradox. We can remain grounded in reality and logic. And at the same time, we can honor and cherish our lofty and “illogical” aspirations.

To sit down each day and practice our music – this takes nothing short of faith. Progress is usually slow. The mental and physical challenges are many. And we must traverse an expanse of questionable results before we make the sounds we want to hear.

If we only rely on logic, we’ll never make it across that chasm. It’s our dreams that help us through the hard times. Our long-term vision provides the justification we sometimes need to keep going.

So, when we finally buy into this pursuit, and decide to abandon the argument? This is when we can bring our attention to the moment at hand. We can fully invest ourselves in the what and how of each note.

And this one-pointed attention becomes a reward in itself. In these moments of pure attention, we feel much of what pulled us to begin with. Here, the micro mirrors (and creates) the macro.



allen mathews classical guitar

Hi, I’m Allen Mathews. 

I started as a folk guitarist, then fell in love with classical guitar in my 20’s.  Despite a lot of practice and work with teachers, I still couldn’t get my music to flow well.  I struggled with excess tension.  My music sounded forced.  And my hands and body were sore after playing.  I was frequently frustrated, and couldn’t see the way forward.  Then I studied with two stellar teachers –  one focused on the technical, and one on the musical.  In time, I came to discover a fundamental set of formulas and movements. These unlocked my playing, and brought new life and enjoyment to my practice. Now I help other guitarists find more comfort and flow in their music, so they play more beautifully.


Allen Mathews was recommended to me as somebody who could help me expand my guitar vocabulary. Allen started me on a really fun cycle of lessons and practice. He is a very good and very enthusiastic teacher, and I feel that I'm on the road to learning. I couldn't be more pleased with my experience.


-Peter Buck, R.E.M.

Hi Allen,
Greetings from the UK. I would like to thank you for providing such an excellent resource. The effort and skill which has gone into creating this program is very evident. I started classical guitar a year or so ago with a teacher but was unable to commit to same time regular slots each week.

The Woodshed Program was exactly what I was looking for. I have found the site very intuitive and well structured and have taken your advice and started from the very beginning of the program whilst still practising some of the pieces I was already working on. It is clear that I will benefit greatly from these early technical studies. There were clearly weaknesses and gaps in my knowledge even though I am still at an early stage. Once again many thanks for the program and very best wishes.


-Rodger Paylor


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