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Guitar Guide

Sean Carscadden adds 'educator' to his musical résumé

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LUCKY MAN Sonoma native Sean Carscadden learned 
to love the guitar, and he's paying it forward.
  • LUCKY MAN Sonoma native Sean Carscadden learned to love the guitar, and he's paying it forward.

For Sean Carscadden, Sonoma County songwriter and producer, music has been a constant throughout every stage of his life. He stumbled into his musical passion at a young age, when he started taking guitar lessons. His teacher later offered him the opportunity to continue his lessons at a music camp put on at the Sonoma Community Center.

After passing the cut-off age for the camp, Carscadden started working as an assistant at 15. "My teacher knew how much I loved going to the camp, so he let me help out," Carscadden says. "But he got really busy, so I just jumped in and began teaching some of the music lessons." Carscadden now returns to the Community Center to teach classes again—this time with some more professional experience under his belt.

Carscadden will be teaching an introductory class to fingerstyle guitar technique and a beginning ukulele class, with a focus on Beatles songs. Why the Beatles and why the ukulele? They are "ubiquitous and popular, not to mention fun," Carscadden says. Fingerstyle is also a prominent technique for guitarists, a style of plucking guitar strings that lends itself to the twangy characteristic of bluegrass music that Carscadden often uses when playing his own music.

These classes are something of a welcome-home present Carscadden is bestowing upon Sonoma County. Carscadden traded in sunshine for rain in 2017, following his then-girlfriend to Portland, Ore.

"Picking up and starting over anywhere is hard," Carscadden says. He is excited to be back in his hometown to continue working on his two main projects, Miss Lonely Hearts and the Sean Carscadden Trio.

As for his next big musical endeavor, Carscadden is recording a new album he expects to release later this year in addition to teaching music classes, running Delta Records and playing gigs.

"Every once in a while, you start getting a little burned out, but then you remind yourself this is what you'd love to with your free time anyway," he says. "It is easy to remind myself of how lucky I am."

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