Dave is a brilliant teacher! When he was based in Victoria, I and my (much more musically talented) son took lessons from him for many years. He is extremely well organized so every lesson is well-conceived and effective. His technical knowledge of music is superb and he is fluent in many musical genres - rock, blues, country and jazz. He is especially skilled in setting lessons that accurately gauge the level of his students. I learned something useful at every lesson. I was challenged but not overwhelmed. I still value the notes and charts he gave me as part of the lessons. The fact that the experience was so positive made me want to practice and that practice propelled my progress as a guitarist. Dave is also an extremely nice guy. He's non-judgemental, encouraging and yet can point out errors, flaws and areas for improvement in an honest and constructive fashion. The rock camps he organized in Victoria also deserve special mention. My son participated in four of them. I was simply astounded by the caliber of the performances he extracted from students (at different levels) after only five short sessions of rehearsal. Dave has an excellent and well-deserved reputation in Victoria for his work as a musician and teacher in the local scene. I wish his studio was still in Victoria!
- Colin Macleod
What can I tell you about David
Other than he’s a fabulous, accomplished, personable and flexible teacher. As an educator myself, I recognize quality, purposeful, and individualized instruction that is tailored to the needs and desires of the student. David excels in these abilities.
He is, primarily, an attentive listener who is capable of eliciting, (and in some cases divining), the desires and aspirations of the student. He has the extensive background and familiarity with accessible resources to capably and collaboratively design a crafted
course of instruction that meets the needs and desires of the musician in the moment, no matter what the skill level or motivation to progress. Moreover, Dave is personable, funny, thoughtful, and chill. Simply put, the guy is well worth the cash.
I could barely play 3 chords when I met Dave and now I’m having a ball playing in a rock band and writing my own music -- kind of my mid-life crisis solution. My son, Ajay Parikh-Friese, also went from being a strict beginner, to fronting his own band (Close the
Bombay Doors -- check them out on Apple music, Spotify, etc.). Not bad, two band’s in one family. In the end, we owe a good chunk of it, pretty much, to Dave getting us started and on the right track. Thank you Mr. Augustin...You Are A ROCK GOD!
Anyway, hire this dude. You won’t regret it. Cheers, Lonn (Middle aged school teacher...and...on the way to becoming a half decent guitar dude.) Rock on!
- Lonn Friese, Cardboard Prophets
Dave taught me everything I needed to know at a young age to give me a lifetime of fun with a guitar, and he can do the same for you. His humour will keep you smiling the whole lesson. You'll walk out jamming a new tune every session. He's definitely the guy you want in charge of teaching you your new hobby.
- Curtis Warren
I took lessons with Dave in Victoria over ten years ago. He then taught my son who really did well as a bass player and guitar player with Dave's help. I have recommended Dave to friends and students who express an interest in guitar and they have always come away smiling. Dave's method is very student friendly, systematic, and organized. He is a real pro, and with his systems for learning he gets people playing songs right away, and a couple of new tunes each week. With a list of songs that the student loves, Dave will select songs that suit the student's playing level. Kids (and adults) love going to Dave's music lessons every week, and I did too. Miss you Dave!
- Ian Farish
Dave's exceptional skill and passion helped my son reach a high level of achievement in an elite high school R&B band. His personal interest in his students also communicates that he cares about them as humans, not just guitar players! When he moved to Toronto he found a way a way to carry on teaching my son via Skype. Dave is an outstanding teacher and role model. I cannot recommend him highly enough.
- Karen Chester
I found Dave to be an excellent teacher. Well organized, thoughtful, and a lot of fun to learn from. If he lived closer I would be taking lessons!
- Susan Johnson
Dave was recommended to me by a professer for bass lessons when I was still fairly new to the instrument. He gave me confidence in my abilities and facilitated my introduction to a influential music program in Victoria that ultimately played a defining role in my youth.
Dave was an amazing instructor, an extremely talented and experienced musician, and just a great, humble, down-to-earth guy. He was definitely pivotal in the role music would play in my life. Thanks, Dave!
- Calvin James
I started taking lessons with David about ten years ago and continue to take them on and off whenever we find time. He takes such great care to listen to what it is specifically that I want to work on- no matter how specific- and is an incredible help in assisting with reaching my guitar goals. Whatever your own goals are, I strongly recommend taking lessons with this fun, talented, patient, very capable and caring fella!
- Jena Gogo
I studied with David for several years and found him to be patient, focussed on my individual teaching needs and very effective. Highly recommended.
- Michael Southwell
This man taught me everything I know!
- Ajay Friese, Close the Bombay Doors and actor - Riot Girls, Lost in Space (Netflix)
Dave is an incredible well rounded professional guitarist. I wish there were more like him. His own skill set is incredible in pop, rock, jazz, r&b...and his ability to communicate those skills to others is a special gift that he has developed with well thought out and personal methods. A fantastic teacher, and player, and an all around great guy.
- Brooke Maxwell
My brother and I used to take lessons from Dave back in Victoria. We were transitioning from a basic classical guitar knowledge to rock/metal. I not only improved greatly, it was amazingly fun. I still own a Startrek telephone I got from Dave.
Top shelf teacher and a top shelf man.
- Mait Lando
David taught me guitar for 5 years, from my introduction to the instrument to my entrance into a post-secondary music program. His knowledge of music is truly remarkable, but what really makes David stand out is the care with which he treats every lesson. He is completely tuned in to each student's short- and long-term goals and tailors every single session to build toward them. David is a joy to spend time with, he is generous with his time and effort, and most importantly he makes learning music exciting. I could not recommend him more highly!!
- Brian Christensen
- Trevor Lang, Cartoon Lizard
I spent 4 years taking lessons from Dave while he lived in victoria. He took my skills on guitar and bass to a whole new level within the first year alone, and throughout the next three we developed my understanding of theory and soloing technique extensively, while also becoming close friends. I would recommend Dave to any guitar or bass player, regardless of their level of experience.
- Logan Chester
- Hilary Beckett, A Day in the Life
- Ben Griffiths, No Aloha
Lessons with David are a dream come true.
He knowledge is second-to-none – Berklee-educated and can pull open one of his shelves of books as a supplementary resource for the lesson at a moment’s notice.
This is to say nothing of his many years as a career musician. This man lives and breathes music.
But most of all, David’s number one priority is fostering a joy of music in his students. He is determined to ensure that you are getting the most out of your instrument and that what you love about music is being borne out in the lessons.
I look forward to our lessons every week. Upon my arrival he’s always got options of things to look at, play and discuss, and he provides a useful set of summary notes for reference between lessons.
Any time I have had a question or concern about anything relating to our lessons – content we’re working on, my practice habits, my speed of progress – David has taken such concerns very seriously and either assuaged my doubts or ensured that we made any necessary changes to keep me moving in the right direction.
And I cannot overstate how valuable the friendly, relaxed, and immensely supportive environment he creates is. Being at a lesson with David I never feel judged, inadequate, pressured, or a low priority, as I have with past teachers.
Furthermore, he’s done wonders to my playing – I have come leaps and bounds with my piano in the two years I’ve been taking lessons, and I couldn’t be happier with my progress.
I even have first-hand experience with his success as a teacher. I began studying piano with David as he was my brother’s guitar teacher before he left town. Now my brother is a working professional musician and has just released an EP of his own music!
If you want music in your life, David is your man – I can’t recommend him enough. Taking lessons from him will be the best choice you’ve ever made! :)