Teachers at the Old Town School

Chris Farrell


Chris uses classic songs from artists such as Bob Dylan, Hank Williams, The Beatles, Joni Mitchell, James Taylor, The Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen, John Denver, Carol King, Neil Young, Jimmy Buffet, Gordon Lightfoot, etc. to teach basic guitar skills that build on each other as you progress into a well rounded guitar player. These skills include: basic chords, bass riffs, fingerstyle, moveable chord forms, melodic scales and ocassional alternate tunings. Transferring these skills on your own to any song you may learn later is also emphasized. Plenty of insights are also offered like how to hang on to that pick and how to get rid of that buzz or clunky sound on a string.

Chris began teaching at the Old Town School in 1977 and worked as Director of Special Events from 1980-81. In addition to teaching he performs as a professional singer/songwriter. This career dates back to the Lincoln Avenue/Old Town folk scene of the 1970’s and 1980’s where he was a popular performer. He appeared regularly at The Earl Of Old Town, Somebody Else’s Troubles, Holsteins and many other clubs. In later years, Chris traveled and played at nationally known folk clubs, including Folk City in New York and The Bluebird Cafe in Nashville. In 1988 he recorded “Night Ballads”, an album of original songs which received critical praise and national air play.

Chris is also a professional actor and has worked in many Chicago Theatres, such as The Goodman, Organic and Steppenwolf. He is a member of SAG and AFTRA. His on-camera work includes feature films, network TV, commercials, industrial films and print.

Education: King's College Theatre Dept. B.A. Program

Started at the Old Town School in July of 1972

No classes found

The Old Town School of Folk Music, Inc.
4544 N. Lincoln Avenue, Chicago IL 60625  •  773.728.6000