Roger”Hurricane“ Wilson was my guitar teacher in the late 70’s. I was a mere 15 years old and Mom would drop me off at Roger’s studio on Pharr Road. I remember walking up a flight of stairs and entering his domain… posters, guitars, and walls painted black. I would bring in a vinyl record with the song I wanted to learn. He would sit patiently showing me chords and scales. Like many of his students, I am still playing today (switching to bass because there were better guitar players than me). Always wondered how he got “Hurricane“ as a nickname. ;o)

Ewell Sasser – Atlanta, GA/ March, 2024 


I have been taking guitar lessons with Roger Wilson for about a year now and can say that he is the real deal! Roger is a world class blues and rock guitar player and has been playing and teaching for many years. He customizes your lessons to whatever it is you wish to learn. If you want deep music theory, he can do that. If you want to learn specific songs, he can do that to. Starting from scratch, he will start you with the basics. My choice was to focus on learning to do blues soloing and Roger has helped me immensely with that. Roger is warm and friendly guy and a great teacher. And you will be hard pressed to find another guitar instructor with the playing experience and on stage legacy that Roger has.

Clark Rodgers – Kennesaw, GA/ March, 2017


I met Roger in 1974 through a mutual friend. He sat in with their band at a sock hop at my high school, Cross Keys in Atlanta, GA. Roger was a little older than the rest of us, but he was very cool with us and he made that Les Paul Gold Top sing! He was obsessed with southern rock, particularly The Allman Brothers as were we. Roger told us he was starting to give guitar lessons and after a year or so of boring lessons, I couldn’t wait to give it a shot with a different teacher. My mom dropped me off at this funky old building on Pharr Road and I climbed the stairs with my trusty little Gibson SG not really knowing what to expect. Roger shared space with some talent agent, but had a cool set up and immediately got down to business. I really like him because of his patience and willingness to teach me what I wanted to learn. We started out learning a song each lesson and progressed from there. It was one of the most enjoyable times of my life. I’ve seen Roger play many times over the years, and it is always enjoyable. His mentoring of kids in the traditional blues genre makes me proud to say “that is my friend.” Roger is a man who is truly dedicated to the instrument, the roots of the music he loves, and his fellow man.

Lane Norman – Atlanta, GA

I started going to Roger Wilson for guitar lessons when I was about 15. I had, and still have, a little brown Gretsch BST-1000. He was super nice and we got on right away. I knew precious little about guitars and how to play them but I was eager and he was patient. He had a little booth in which we studied and some guitars on the wall. I’m guessing that for this old-school blues dude I was a bit of a twist for him. I was into the Talking Heads, DEVO, B-52’s, The Beatles, Wings, The Bongos and more. I would bring him in cassette tapes of songs I wanted to learn and he’d figure them out and teach them to me…I guess that’s what you call a guitar lesson. He was always bright with smiles over the guitar prowess of the likes of DEVO and other New Wavers. DEVO often had major barre chords and The Bongos and Talking Heads had a different take on stuff. All the stuff was challenging for him and he dug it. “Slow Down” by the Beatles was standard I-IV-V in C but has some variations that he liked. I still play that song in my band The Todd Prusin Experience and think of him every time. My seven year old daughter is into the Talking Heads now and I still remember how to play Psycho Killer…it’s all muscle memory. Sure he talked on the phone a bit, these being the days of the new cordless telephones, but he always liked me and was super nice to my mom…who drove me until I turned 16. He had this cool cassette taper eraser that was a magnet through which you passed the tape. He had all the white 10 minute (?) tapes he’d give me onto which I’d tape my song for the next week. A friend had given me a Fender acoustic guitar and I brought that in a bit but didn’t really need it. I may have already had my Epiphone acoustic by then but I told Roger that I didn’t need the Fender and as it was inferior to the Epiphone. He bought it from me, I forget for how much but he was fair…considering I knew little about the price of a Fender acoustic. I still have this cool Fender “Beatles” guitar strap that he gave me…a little leather number that’s tragically too short for my picture perfect Hofner bass…but I still have it. He and I are back in touch and cross paths every now and then. The Hurricane is a great guy and a great teacher. Once when it snowed we still had our lesson. He asked if I had had school that day. I told him I went to school (I guess the radio didn’t announce school closings?) and since there was no activity I went home. He said something like, “If there ain’t nothing happenin’, go home.” My mom and I still refer to that quote. Typing this makes me feel likes it’s a eulogy…it’s not but on that dreadful day that quote should be his epitaph. 

Todd Prusin. Student ~1983~1985

I took lessons from Roger Wilson back from 1974-1975. At the time, I had been trying to learn how to play the guitar for 4 years. I did not take to the old Mel Bay book too well and was about ready to quit. Then, a friend referred me to his guitar teacher, Roger Wilson. Roger really related to what I liked at that time. I was really into the Allman Brothers, and he really helped me not only in learning the various positions of the Pentatonic scale, but how to apply them to the music that was inspiring me. He also made me hip to the late great Ted Greene’s Chord Chemistry book, a wealth of guitar chord knowledge. As a young kid at the time, he also served up some good life lessons. I am forever grateful from what I learned from Roger as a young kid trying to become a better guitar player. He really got me going in the right direction. As of this writing, I have been successfully playing and recording in Atlanta for 30 years. Thank you, Roger!..

Randy Chapman – Atlanta, GA


I’m writing to give my testimony regarding Roger Wilson’s contribution to the guitar community. I began taking guitar lessons from Roger in 1975. His lessons were challenging, always leading me deeper into the directions I wanted to follow. I took lessons for approximately 2 years at which time I followed my passion for electric guitar by playing in numerous rock bands for a decade or more. To this day, I still enjoy the guitar and find that I still use the basic foundations I learned from Roger many years ago. I still see Roger around Atlanta as he has since become an R&B icon in the Southeast and beyond. Roger has mentored many more young players besides myself, and is in my opinion, a great ambassador for the guitar community.

Bill Birdsong, Atlanta Georgia


 I’m a guitarist/songwriter/composer/bandleader based in central NC, touring VA, NC and SC for the past 10 years with my band, The Will McBride Group. We’ve opened shows for ZZ Top, Styx, Eddie Money, Aaron Neville, Toad the Wet Sprocket, Sixpence None the Richer. I began learning the guitar from Roger Wilson back in the early 80s. Roger’s ability to connect theory with enjoyment in the styles of music I was interested in, got me started on the road to mastering the guitar. His vast knowledge of the blues really connected with me and his willingness and patience as I struggled in the beginning kept me from giving up. The guitar has been a lifelong enjoyment for me, and Roger Wilson’s teaching helped me get started!

Will McBride – Raleigh, NC


I took lessons from Roger in 1977-78 to learn fingerstyle picking. For the next year and a half he took me so much further than I could have hoped. Things I learned from Roger I still use today in playing folk, blues, country blues and even bluegrass. Students will have a teacher who has a vast knowledge of music and a great passion for the guitar and the patience to see you through the times when it seems like you’re “just not getting it”. Have fun makin’ music!

Hal Rogers –  Dallas, Ga.


I had the privilege of working for Roger at his new studio before it even opened. Before that I was working after school at Oxford Chemicals in their plant. I saved up money, quit my job, and went on a cross country trip with my cousin. At the time, I was taking lessons from Roger at his Pharr Road location. We became friends, and my lessons moved to his last lesson of the evening. We would then head out to Good Ol’ Days next door for some beers after lessons were finished. I let him know we were going across country and he offered me a job when I returned. We literally built the inside of that studio when I returned in the summer of 81. No AC in Atlanta during August gets hot to say the least, to this day the smell of fresh cut wood and  Gatorade makes me think of building out that place. Roger’s harmonica player’s wife painted the sign for us. Some great memories came out of that place, and no Roger I won’t further degrade your reputation by listing them here! I remember the smell of the varnish from the antique shop two doors down, the flowers that Terry Alexander from Very Terry Flowers from next door provided for my dates, and  playing  your Les Paul really loud before you arrived to teach lessons. I also remember many of the local musicians who would stop by to say hello. Good times and tons of memories! I would love to go into further details, but I won’t do that to you! Thanks for the great times there!

Ira Planer – Raleigh, NC


I have many great memories of my guitar lessons with Roger back in the late 70s. He was very patient as I tried to master such great songs as Riding the Storm Out and Champaign Jam. He was an excellent teacher and I’m sure he still is. He took the time to work with you until you really understood what you were working on or until you got that lick just right! Even though it’s been 35 years since I was his student, I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend him.

Gene Norman – Atlanta, GA

Roger Wilson, plain and simple, is a Great Guitar Teacher. His knowledge, incredible skills, immense playing experience……..along with Much needed patience for beginners like me, make him an ideal Teacher for a Student at any level. I would recommend Roger Wilson to anyone wishing to take their playing to the next level.

Edmund Grant – Haddock, Ga


Back in the late 70s, Roger Wilson changed my life by teaching me how to play by ear. After trying  several other guitars teachers and their traditional methods, a friend referred me to Roger.  Roger’s approach was very different. He built our lessons around the music I was listening to and taught me how to figure songs out for myself – not to rely on books alone. He taught me to appreciate the roots of the music I was hearing. I vividly remember one lesson when I asked him to show me how to play some of the first Dire Straits album. He pulled out an old J.J. Cale record Really and played it. “You mean like this?”  Yeah, just like that.  I learned some great lessons from Roger. Thirty-five years later, the guitar is still a big passion in my life. Roger’s lessons in scales, blues, and slide provided a foundation that serves me well to this day. I whole heartedly recommend Roger Wilson. 

Jim Kilgore – Columbus, OH


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