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Basic Math, Drum, French, Violin, Arithmetic, English, Percussion
Claudio R. is a recent transplant to SF from NYC/Seattle. He was born in Massachusetts and studied classical violin from the age of 6. He attended Vassar College where he earned a degree in violin performance. During college he started playing the drumset because of his infatuation with Jazz. Claudio attended The New School for Jazz and contemporary music on drumset and studied with Chico Hamilton, Joe Chambers, Ari Hoenig and Peter Retzlaff.
During his fifteen years in NYC Claudio performed and toured in a variety of musical situations. He has performed/recorded with hip hop legend Slick Rick, Lauren Hill, Praswell (Fugees), hip hop pioneer Doug-e-fresh, Adam Duritz (counting Crowes), Jason Mraz, and Jazz greats John Hicks, and Gary Bartz. He toured with afro-pop band Chris Berry and Pangea, tropical chart-toppers Xtreme, southern soulful singer/songwriter Lipbone Redding, and indie rock band Jonny Lives. For ten years he was the house drummer for Freestyle Mondays, NYC’s longest running hip hop open mic. In Seattle Claudio performed with pop band Richie Aldente, fusion group Gravity, electronica duo Fruit and Vegetable, and ran his own weekly jazz gig at Ballard’s 418 Public House. He was also the house drummer at Robert Lang’s recording studios.
Claudio taught basic musicianship and drumline in NYC public schools for six years. His teaching goals for drumset include establishing reliable technique that is useful in all styles, understanding differences and similarities between music styles, developing strong time and rhythm (through transcription and metronome games). Claudio is also adept at incorporating electronic elements in acoustic playing and can coach students on how to use programs such as Ableton Live in their setup for performances and as a practice tool.
Drum, Music Performance, Music Recording, Percussion
Rob (aka R.J.): Born in Detroit, Michigan, RJ studied r&b and jazz from Motown drummers and Funk Brothers Benny Benjamin and Uriel Jones. From the age of fifteen he played in rhythm & blues and jazz combos around Detroit. He then studied privately with Berklee School of Music drum maestro, Gene Stuart, mallet studies with Mark Johnson at Michigan State University and earned a Bachelors Degree from Michigan State. He moved to San Francisco where he studied North Indian percussion and tabla with Zakir Hussain, trap set with jazz recording artist George Marsh. He is a consummate producer, performer, recording artist and teacher. He plays and teaches all styles of rhythm including jazz, funk, blues, rock, latin, and world fusion. He teaches drumset, congas, djembe, tabla, cajon and hand percussion. In addition to teaching privately, RJ has directed special week-long drum and percussion focused ensemble productions at Drake High School and Marin Academy and was Music Director at Cascade Canyon (K-8) School for two years where he directed variety shows and produced scores for the drama department. In his teaching practice all ages are welcome and all levels including: beginners, intermediate students, advanced players, and professionals.
Hello everyone! My name is Vinnie, and I am a San Francisco Bay-Area native, and have been an active member in the local music scene for the past decade. A recent graduate from San Jose State University, I earned both a MA & BM in Jazz Studies Performance (also holds AA form Cabrillo College in music), and studied with one of the most in-demand SF Bay-Area drummers, Jason Lewis. With a passion and dedication for teaching, I can help you develop the fundamentals necessary to play the drums in a variety of styles ranging from: jazz, rock, funk, Latin, and orchestral.
Christian has 20+ years of teaching experience and 25+ years of performance experience in a myriad of styles. He is currently enrolled at the Berklee School of Music (Boston, MA) through their online Music Production Degree Program.
Christian is also a member in the following organizations:
Vic Firth Education Team
Hudson Music Teacher Integration Program
Professional Drum Teachers Guild. He has studied privately with John Xepoleas, Steve Bowman (Counting Crows), Rob Hart, Alan Hall and currently with Mike Johnston.
Christian is also accepting a limited amount of students from the age of 10 to adult, beginner to advance. He currently has openings at his Brentwood home studio on Tuesdays and Fridays.
The air-conditioned studio is equipped with 2 drumsets and professional digital recording equipment to capture each lesson. The latest educational DVD's and play-along/minus-drums CD's are also incorporated in the lessons.
Parents are encouraged to sit in on the lessons or they can relax or do some work in the internet ready waiting room. An annual recital is conducted for family and friends.
Prepare for school auditions, refine hand and foot technique, learn double bass grooves and fills improve reading and transcribing , sharpen your timing, incorporate linear playing, apply rudiments to the Drumset
Styles: Rock / Funk / Country / Blues / Jazz / Latin
Drum, Guitar, Music Theory, Songwriting
Cliff started his musical career as a young boy, taking classical piano lessons from the age of 4 until the age of 12. Discouraged by the strict format of his musical education, he picked up the guitar, and vowed never to take another music lesson. However, upon entering college, Cliff enrolled in drum lessons on a whim, and he has never looked back.
After discovering this new found love for music, Cliff earned not only a degree in English, but also a BA in Music from Santa Clara University, with a concentration in both guitar and drums. While this exposed Cliff to a strong classical background that included piano proficiency, conducting, and sight-singing, he also continued to foster a love for rock, funk, blues, and other popular music. As a result, Cliff has given performances in a variety of contexts -- including jazz, classical, and popular music. Cliff currently plays lead guitar in a San Francisco metal band that is recording an EP to be released later this year.
More than a music lover, Cliff is also very passionate about education. In addition to teaching Collegiate-level aural skills classes, Cliff teaches music several different schools throughout the Bay Area, with students ranging from Kindergarten to 8th Grade. Additionally, Cliff augmented his ability to teach music at the highly regarded Walden School TTI in New Hampshire earlier this year. Whether you are a beginner drummer or guitarist, or a seasoned shredder, Cliff shares your enthusiasm, and will design a lesson plan that will take you where you want to go on your musical journey (and maybe to places you never even considered before!)
Drum, Music Performance, Percussion
Originally from West Virginia, Ben is quickly making a name for himself within the drumming community since moving to San Francisco in 2009. Having performed in a wide array of musical situations early in his career Ben draws on those initial performances to shape his current music experience.
While earning his degree in philosophy and music from West Virginia University, he had the opportunity to travel to China in the summer of 2008 to perform with the Pittsburgh Youth Symphony Orchestra. During his time at WVU Ben performed with the “Little Big Band”, WVU’s premiere jazz ensemble, along with other Jazz and world music ensembles.
A teacher himself, Ben has had many influential teachers including: Tommy Igoe, George Willis, Tim Adams, Mike Dawson, Al Wrublesky, Scott Amendola, and Chuck Brown.
In addition to his freelance playing and teaching schedule Ben is a founding member of the band Abatis and a high school music teacher at Marin Catholic High School.
"Steven is very professional and extremely helpful. He always has a smile on and is serious about helping you phrase the music. I would highly recommend him to anyone."
"It's been really exciting so far! Jordan has been so helpful, so knowledgeable. I could not have found a better instructor and I'm getting better and better every day."
"My daughter's wedding was weeks away and I had never been able to dance a step. With Jenny's help, I came further than ever before in such short time in any subject."