#1
Hello.

I want to know your opinion on Tom Hess' guitar playing. Also, what do you think of his correspondence lessons, MCMP, and the EGTIC program?
#2
Hey,

I just started taking correspondence lessons from Tom. I'm on my second lesson. I get one every two weeks.

First off. It ain't cheap. At $55.00 per lesson it's quite pricey. Is it worth it? My answer would be. That depends.

For me where I'm at in my guitar playing career I needed more direction and tailor made lessons which I feel I am getting from Tom. When you sign up you get a fairly detailed questionaire to answer which details what you hope to accomplish and where you think are your strengths and weaknesses, favorite groups, guitar players and many other related questions. From this and other critiques of your playing Tom puts together a tailor made plan just for you. Although a lot of the emails seem like they are canned responses.

That being said, Tom is also a master at marketing manipulation and will try to sell you at every opportunity with tools he says are musts for your development. Most of which are tools I feel should be given for free just for taking his courses, but, meh, whatever, I guess some of the tools have merit. I'm just not willing to pay any more than what I already do above and beyond the lessons.

I feel he is an exceptional guitar player to answer your question. Check out his playing on youtube. Don't know much about the MCMP or EGTIC programs, sorry.

If you have some more detailed questions you would like answered feel free to ask and I would be happy to try and help.
#3
Tom does charge quite a bit for those lessons, but when you consider the amounts of things he does and how busy he always is, you can understand why he does charge that price (shortage of time). I'm glad that his lessons are working for you (really no surprise to me).

He definitely is a killer player. His free mini course alone helped me to improve my guitar playing significantly, so I'm hoping to one day sign up for his guitar lessons. I'm actually already in his MCMP and have learned tons about how to navigate the music business. The info has actually been pretty life changing. At this point in my life I just need to find a band full of people who know as much as I do and I'm sure I will move forward in career pretty far
#4
He's really not very good, is a bad teacher, and is kind of a twat.
There's no such thing; there never was. Where I am going you cannot follow me now.
#5
I appreciate your responses. I'm a student in his MCMP program and was just seeing what outsiders had to say about the program I'm in. It's always good to find out more about what one is doing or involved in.
#6
Quote by theogonia777
He's really not very good, is a bad teacher, and is kind of a twat.


What makes you call him a twat? lol.
#7
Jeremy, When a teacher puts ads saying " Let me teach you how to get a girl easilly wtih a guitar " ( Or something along those lines ) they get called twats.

http://tomhess.net/HowToGetWomenWithYourGuitar.aspx

There was a worse ad, something along the lines of " getting them in bed "

VERY degrading and rude, also, try asking him a question if you weren't a student, see how he'd apply

Edit : Link #2 : http://tomhess.net/GuitarSoloSex.aspx
Last edited by weirdzaid at Mar 19, 2015,
#8
Quote by Jeremy.R5544998
What makes you call him a twat? lol.


You know, only everything he has ever posted on this site. This is the worst though:

http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/columns/general_music/taking_guitar_lessons_heres_what_your_guitar_teacher_wont_tell_you.html

The funny thing is that he describes himself perfectly. Then if you read the comments carefully, you will notice a couple of Tom's very own sock/meat puppets defending him. rockmangod's comment is pretty bang on.
There's no such thing; there never was. Where I am going you cannot follow me now.
#9
Quote by weirdzaid
Jeremy, When a teacher puts ads saying " Let me teach you how to get a girl easilly wtih a guitar " ( Or something along those lines ) they get called twats.

http://tomhess.net/HowToGetWomenWithYourGuitar.aspx

There was a worse ad, something along the lines of " getting them in bed "

VERY degrading and rude, also, try asking him a question if you weren't a student, see how he'd apply

Edit : Link #2 : http://tomhess.net/GuitarSoloSex.aspx


#11
I bought a few lessons from Tom and signed up for EGTIC in my misspent youth lol. In retrospect it was a total waste of money and I'd strongly suggest people do not sign up for his material. To give a summary of my own experience (much of which is also available from other threads about Tom if you want it corroborated)

1) The lessons - they are indeed stock PDFs, audio files and videos bunched together based on broad themes e.g. if you say you want to master sweeping in the style of yngwie and blues improv, you'll get a bunch of (expensive) stock lessons based on that. I was incredibly disappointed with the lack of anything even resembling personal tuition for what I was paying. The 'personalised feedback' you get from Tom is you get to send him a brief video or audio clip once every 6 weeks and he will send back a paragraph or two on what he thinks you need to work on - you'd get far better feedback just by posting a clip on here.

Keep in mind also that Tom buys in to the Tony Robbins-esque attitude that he'll charge you a lot of money and then if you don't succeed, it's entirely on you 'for not wanting it enough' - so I suggest if that's your mentality then you just keep your money to yourself and commit yourself to a self-disciplined practice regime and pursuit of your goals, holding yourself accountable. Tom won't hold you accountable contrary to what he says in his marketing spiel, so you're not missing out on him emailing or calling you up to ball you out for not practicing enough or anything like that, I assure you. Tom does make the argument that you save a lot of time by studying with a good teacher - I agree, much better to find one near you that plays to a standard you want to reach and/or has taught other players you respect and study with them.

2) The 'online community' - the marketing makes a big deal out of the notion that there is a thriving online community of amazing, successful players all waiting to help you behind Tom's pay wall. The reality is that the forum is pretty much dead compared to what you'd find on most internet forums - back when I subscribed, there might be one or two new threads a day, with a handful of responses, on a good day. Most of the time it's people posting questions and then someone who may or may not know the proper answer/technique/theory/whatever has a guess at the answer, which directly contradicts the marketing that suggests that somehow the standard of responses on the forum is 'higher' than you'd get on a general online forum because the students are somehow inherently more knowledgeable on average - in my experience, they were not.

3) The 'Elite Guitar Teacher's Inner Circle' - I'm an intermediate player with a good teaching mindset and a lot of patience so figured maybe I'd check this out and get in to lessons. Keep in mind Tom charges between $147 and $197 per month for this service and promises all kinds of implementation support and help. I thought I'd be getting advice from an expert for this high monthly cost to guide me through setting up my business, getting past initial problems etc.

So I joined, the high monthly fee goes straight to Tom via paypal - I log in and there is yet another essentially-dead forum with a big 'read me' file saying 'Tom is on tour at present so no implementation calls this month' or something like that. Just stop and consider this for a second - $147 per month for access to a near-dead forum and the big selling point, personal time with a successful teacher and great player (in fairness, he is a great player if you want metal/neo-classical), turns out to be unavailable. Was this pointed out when I signed up? Nope. Any refund or subsequent 'free' month by way of compensation? Nope. The content that was supposed to help me was a couple of pdfs talking about where to stick flyers up for business and exactly the sort of general advice you could easily get here or any business forum - again, definitely no magic secrets or anything worth paying such a high fee for! I also got an audio file of Tom going through a Q and A teleconference with some other people - nothing at all relevant to my own personal requirements at the time.

I started posting a few questions on the forum (the questions I thought I was paying such a huge amount for Tom to personally answer) and got very few responses - those I did get were invariably just about as clueless as me, guessing at the answers.

It should also be noted that Tom claims that he runs a geographical lock-out system similar to a franchise model, i.e. if I join and then someone on my street tries to join, that person can't because I already have the territory. Of course by now you know where this is going ... when I joined, there was an on-going debate happening between two users who were very, very close to each other geographically, questioning why they had both been allowed to sign up when they lived so close ... Tom never responded and this was all treated as a 'well, isn't this awkward lolz' discussion by other members on the forum, who should actually have been appalled that this was allowed to happen in direct contravention to the supposed policies they were paying so much money for.

And that brings me nicely on to the general atmosphere of the forums behind Tom's paywall. Tom is ultra-right wing. I have no problem with anyone's political views, but keep in mind that if you do object to giving money to someone who is a big fan of Glenn Beck, loves Fox news, advocates the banning of all alcohol and drug sales (which ironically would require a much bigger government bureaucracy than currently exists, whilst he simultaneously decries big government), thinks the Republicans keep losing elections because they are not right wing enough etc. then this may be something you will consider before deciding whether to sign up.

Tom will openly rip you a new asshole on his forum if you express a left wing, or even moderate, viewpoint - when I was (briefly) a member I saw many people on there who were essentially paying money to have Tom ridicule their beliefs and tell them how wrong they were. Tom is on Facebook, if you want a flavor of his views and how arrogant he can be in telling anyone with contrasting views how wrong they are then you can check his page out for free. He is open about how he considers his political views more important than his business which is fair enough, but I'd have been mortified if I were paying all this money to him to have him rip me for daring to not be an ultra-conservative.

I recall one debate on the Tom forum where Fox news had made an outrageously unrepresentative video talking about how the British government (I live in England) had 'stolen the right to bear arms' from British citizens and how the evil liberals in the US wanted the same for America. One of Tom's hardcore right wing friends posted this on there - when I pointed out I am a British citizen and the video was full of misrepresentation and outright bullshit (there has not been a 'right to bear arms' in England like there is in America for well over 100 years, fewer than 10% of people own any guns at all, England has some of the tightest gun control in the world etc.) I had a bunch of AMERICANS jump on me telling me how wrong I was about my own country, because heaven forbid Fox news be wrong!

So in summary -

1) Tom is a great guitar player
2) The lessons are very generic and contrary to what Tom states, I do not personally think he provides any information or amazing secrets that aren't freely available online.
3) If Tom has 'something more important to do' i.e. go on tour rather than give the help you're paying big money for, you'll get no help for that period.
4) Tom's political views and the general very right wing nature of most of the forum may be off putting to many people. I suspect the 'you're wrong, just because, and if you don't like it then **** you' arrogance of Tom and his supporters would be off-putting to educated people on both the political right and left.
5) The forums are not particularly well populated.
6) It's very suspicious how many people appear from nowhere to defend Tom whenever anyone criticises him - it's usually the same clique of around 5 or 6 people who have now spent so much on Tom that they can't bring themselves to admit they're wasting their money.
#13
He's not even that great of a player and the incarnation of Rhapsody that he is playing in is a complete joke.
There's no such thing; there never was. Where I am going you cannot follow me now.
#15
He looks like a dork when he doesn't play.
There's no such thing; there never was. Where I am going you cannot follow me now.
#16
FYI Hess doesn't play with Rhapsody Of Fire - see this post http://www.blabbermouth.net/news/rhapsody-of-fire-parts-ways-with-guitarist-tom-hess/ he 'respectfully parted way with them over philosophical differences' ... make of that what you will.

To the original poster, I would strongly advocate you try to get a refund while you still can - unlikely you will get one but perhaps worth a try?
#17
Tom Hess gave me a wristie once. I said "man you are such a fag for doing this." Then he replied "mmmhmm" then I looked down and discovered he had my winky in his mouth! So then I put him in a headlock and gave him a noogie until all his hair fell out
Last edited by BL1NDSIDE-J at Mar 28, 2015,
#21
I am a correspondence student of Tom Hess and a member of MCMP and I have improved a lot since becoming his student in January.also Tom Hess has taught , coached and mentored thousands of people world wide to become successful as teachers, better musicians etc.so my question is if people believe that it works and it is what helps them become successful or great as a musician then where is the problem? I understand not everyone has the same views regarding style , teaching strategy or even the cost of lessons.that being said I will remain a student until I feel I will no longer benefit from the lesson material and giving my money away for nothing. I have taken lessons from lots of guitar teachers in the past where I would learn the same crap each week for a few weeks and not move forward at all and Tom Hess lessons are not like that IMHO