Ted Greene (1946-2005)

If there were any one person deserving the title of World’s Greatest Guitar Teacher, Ted Greene was the man. You’ve never heard of him (most guitar players haven’t, either), but any serious guitarist with an interest in chord theory has his own copy of Chord Chemistry, a book of spells that continues to delight and disturb novices and professionals alike. I’ve still really only absorbed the first 10 pages. It’s a cavernous tome of chords, and a standard issue field guide at places like Berklee College of Music. I got my copy from their bookstore at the recommendation of Dream Theater’s John Petrucci.

Try not to giggle at the cover:

Ted died last July, and I only found out yesterday. That gives you an idea of just how un-famous he was. He has very few recordings to his name, but he was one of the hardest working musicians and music teachers in the business. That he died in an apartment in Encino gives you an idea of how little money he made.