A Talk with Guitarist David Rogers


Sept. 21- Guitarist David Rogers spent time with Southern Utah University students and faculty in the Thorley Recital Hall.

Rogers, a Detroit native, began learning guitar early on in his life and quickly gained an appreciation for the instrument.

After finishing high school he studied classical guitar in college and gained a masters degree in lute and early music before coming to perform at the Utah Shakespeare Theater during his graduate degree. Rogers played the festival for three seasons before moving up to Oregon to play in the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

Now he travels around playing various solo shows at venues and generating amazing reviews across the country.

His presentation on chords and harmonies dove into the differences between traditional and modern sounding progressions and the use of vibrato and tone to redefine a piece from individual to individual. Using the example song “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot” Rogers was able to showcase the importance of understanding harmony and defining one’s personal style when it comes to music.

“In college, music theory focuses on traditional or classical music. It’s easier to teach, it fits into the curriculum better”, Rogers stated. “But I tend to lean towards jazz or the modern kind of music because that’s where humans are today. That’s what we understand”.

While some of the presentation was geared towards more advanced musicians, the students from the beginner guitar class and their professor Dr. Roland Stearns were able to gain an appreciation for what they might learn later in their musical careers.

Dr. Stearns has decided after attending Rogers’ presentation, that the class could benefit from taking some of the topics discussed and use them to gain a broader understanding of guitar. Students who attended, while acknowledging that they may not be at the same level as Rogers, seemed to appreciate his broad scope of guitar in terms of making each piece your own and learning what works well with other instruments as well as what works when playing solo.

In the final few minutes of the presentation audience members were given the chance to ask questions regarding what it takes to perform professionally. Rogers shared his own experiences and methods for booking gigs, as well as distinguishing the differences between American versus European gigs in terms of what is required to make it in the music industry.  


Story by: Bayleigh Dyer
Photo by: Unsplash.com