Berkeley Music Lessons

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Music Lesson Reviews from Students

Students are raving about their Music instructors on TakeLessons. Check out some of these recent reviews.

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Popular Music Teachers Near Berkeley

Check out some of our most popular teachers near Berkeley including El Cerrito, Emeryville, Orinda, Albany and Piedmont.

John D. Berkeley, CA

About John

*** Lesson Details *** My students will develop a passion for music and a desire to play! I like to get right to the experience of actually playing music. I start with learning songs, drum beats, and chord progressions and get to technique and music reading AFTER we have had some fun. My key to successful teaching is to create a custom curriculum for each student. Some students are interested in the details of how to do it "right", and others just want to rock. I try to adapt to different learning styles and musical goals to give each student an ideal experience. I want students to learn how to play, not just how to read or do drills. We will listen to music together, and talk about the function of each instrument. For drummers, I play bass lines on the piano and we lock

Reviews

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Mike T. September 22, 2014
Percussion · In studio
I have been a colleague of John's for 16 years and he has always impressed me with his constant dedication to the craft of music. Though he is incredibly talented, he has always been one that works hard and asks questions without fear. In my experience, this is the kind of person that makes the best teachers. He has always loved music, drums, all percussion and more recently has been learning so much about music technology and how to express yourself with any media available. It would be a shame to pass up an opportunity to study with him!
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Daniel P. August 24, 2014
Drum · In studio
I was pretty new to drumming when I first started taking lessons from John, and I could barely play a simple back beat. Long story short - within 6 months I was playing my first show!

I was looking for a teacher with both rock/jazz and classical background, so John fit the bill perfectly. He also knows a lot about Latin American percussion and other styles from around the world, and has a great understanding of how these different styles relate to each other and the various techniques which can be applied.

During the first few lessons, we discussed my background and aims, and came up with a solid plan for how I should proceed. John's broad experience was really helpful for this process. I had been playing guitar and piano for many years before I started on drums, so I already had a decent grounding in musicality and theory. We therefore focused mainly on technique during lessons. John has a real gift for explaining things in an easily understandable way, as well as going into detail when required. Whenever I had trouble with a particular technique, John's advice would help me overcome it. He is also very helpful in suggesting suitable exercises and repertoire. John also provides a private blog containing lesson notes and useful links, and he was also happy for me to record lessons, which I found very useful. With John's help, I was able to progress pretty quickly, and after 6 months I started playing in a band with some friends, which has been awesome fun.

John is super friendly and engaging, and this makes lessons with him great fun. As well as being a fantastic drummer, it is clear that he really cares about the quality of his lessons, and about his students. I'm sure he would make a great teacher for students of all ability/background. John, you rock! Thanks!
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Annie H. October 13, 2013
Drum
Verified Student
Great Musician & Great Teacher

My son started taking lessons with John when he was 7. During the past few months my son has become more aware of the music around him. He looks forward to drums every week. John has great patients and is amazing at connected with children. He is able to keep my son focused, which can be a hard task of itself. He offers instruction while still valuing the individual's personality and taste. John not only shares his knowledge and personal experiences, but his passion.

I would recommend John to anyone in a heartbeat.
Arrica R. Oakland, CA

About Arrica

I was born and raised in Los Angeles but I've just recently relocated to the Bay Area. I am a Professional Musician/Songwriter/Vocalist teaching songwriting, voice, and performance technique as well as a combination thereof. I began singing at a very young age for anyone who would listen (so my parents tell me) and began taking music lessons shortly thereafter. I am now a USC graduate and have also studied music privately for over 25 years as well as at the esteemed Vocal Power Institute. I've professionally released several albums and I am grateful to have had my music featured/licensed by Starbucks, NBC, The CW network, NikeWomen.com, and MTV. I've toured extensively playing to audiences across the country and have had the honor of sharing the stage with artists ranging from Conor ...

Reviews

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Samantha P. September 5, 2014
Singing · In home
Verified Student
Arrica is a wonderful singing coach! My nine-year-old daughter thoroughly enjoys their time together each week. Arrica always follows my daughter’s lead and gauges her interest in particular songs while also giving input and suggestions that further her progress and challenge her at just the right level. Her kind and patient demeanor has also helped my daughter, whom is somewhat shy, feel completely at ease. I can see through my daughter’s lesson with Arrica that she is very passionate and committed to her work. I would whole-heartedly recommend Arrica to anyone whom is looking for an amazing singing coach.
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Adam H. November 11, 2013
Singing
Verified Student
Amazing Voice Coach

Arrica has been amazing! She is an extremely talented and very supportive teacher. Our daughter is making great progress and not only enjoys singing more than before, she loves Arrica and looks forward to their time together. We couldn't be happier.
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Maria R. August 8, 2013
Singing
Verified Student
Thanks to Arrica, I'm learning to sing!

Arrica is a talented singer, songwriter and musician. I have been taking lessons from her for several months and have witnessed significant improvement. There is no getting around the need to practice regularly (in order to see results) but Arrica provides the encouragement and guidance necessary to make the effort enjoyable and rewarding. She is very accommodating when it comes to scheduling, lesson planning, etc. She is kind, generous and a joy to spend time with. I highly recommend her!
Kristen K. Berkeley, CA

About Kristen

My name is Kristen K. and I am an accomplished violinist and teacher from Lexington, Kentucky. I began my musical studies at age 7 and quickly discovered my passion and love for music. As a young musician, I attended numerous summer music festivals, participated in the Central Kentucky Youth Orchestra. I was a winner of two concerto competitions, which gave me the opportunity to perform solos with the youth orchestra. I continued my studies at the University of Kentucky as a Violin Performance major and it was there that I discovered my love for teaching music! After completing my performance degree, I decided to also pursue a Bachelor’s in Music Education. During my college career, I served as a teaching assistant in the University of Kentucky String Project, I taught group and private ...

Reviews

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Sheng H. January 19, 2015
Violin · In studio
Verified Student
She is really nice and sweet. I learned a lot from her and she always provide the best advice and material that can help me to solve my difficulties.
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Sam F. December 12, 2014
Violin · In studio
Verified Student
Kristen is a technically robust, patient and works with the student to ensure progress.
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Anthony Atthowe A. November 18, 2014
Viola · In studio
Verified Student
If I could write anything to hope that you choose Kristen to teach you, imagine it here: _______. That said. She is Amazing, Fantastic, Patient, Fun, Understand, did I say Patient!? I am a 28 year old man that is learning Viola as his "2nd" real instrument. I play piano well, and "campfire" guitar. Kristen is teaching me to read Alto clef and play the Viola. She is teaching at MY pace and not complaining when I come in without having the most practice time accomplished throughout the prior week. She has a flexible schedule and is available for communication (email and phone) between lessons (I've rescheduled many times because my work hours are not constant). She's Great! I hope you let her teach you! Thank you for reading.
Vir M. Berkeley, CA

About Vir

I am a graduate of U.C. Berkeley.;I have been teaching and performing music for over 15 years. I have toured the United States and other countries playing many types of music. I play Guitar and Bass and Sing   I teach in a fun style that emphasizes the students creativity.  Styles range from Rock, Folk, Electronic, Jazz,  African, World, Hip Hop to Country.  I can give you the skills to go to the next level.  From 5-99 years old! *** Lesson Details *** A typical lesson would look like this:  Depending on your level we would first work on some new chords and/or a new scale and how to play them.  We "jam" a little to get the feel.  I have a really great way of teaching theory that will get you playing what you want.  The second half we usually focus on learning a song of your choice or ...

Reviews

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caroline S. April 23, 2015
Guitar · In home
Verified Student
Vir is a gifted teacher. He has taught my son guitar for more than a year. He meets my son where ever he's at in his practice, attention and interests with calm, skilled focus and intention . Vir's background as performing musician infuses his teaching with an enthusiasm and creativity of practicing his teaching. We are truly grateful for Vir.
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Alexander S. March 6, 2014
Singing
Verified Student
A Guru

Vir is beyond your typical vocal coach. He was a huge help on things like pitch accuracy and phrasing, but more than anything, his focus on getting me to tap into and harness my inner power has already paid huge dividends in my recordings and performances. Further, Vir is an amazing person to know and his home-studio in Berkeley is magnificent!
Yonatan T. Berkeley, CA

About Yonatan

Yonatan recently graduated from UC Santa Cruz, with a B.A. in classical guitar and electronic music. Since then, he has been teaching music full-time both in large classes and to individuals. When he is not teaching, he is performing with one of his folk, blues, or rock bands. Yonatan has enjoyed teaching music for over 3 years. He teaches Guitar, Banjo, Mandolin, Accordion, Theory, Ukulele, and songwriting. Throughout his childhood his musical education was non-traditional, as he learned to play by listening to the musicians that inspired him, and aimed to replicate their playing while defining his own style. Later in his life, he understood the benefit of formal training, which led him to receive a B.A. in music. For this reason, Yonatan's lessons incorporate both ways he ...

Reviews

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Matt W. October 30, 2014
Guitar · In home
Verified Student
Yonatan is a fabulous teacher! He taught our 10 year old son beginning guitar and our 13 year old daughter advanced guitar and ukulele. He was a master at discovering our kids' interests and abilities and teaching them from where they were.He was very creative and motivating with our son, balancing his teaching by engaging our son in writing his own songs while also learning skills. Our daughter is more advanced and interested in playing others' songs and composing her own on guitar, ukulele, and piano - all of which Yona plays. Her playing and her confidence steadily improved with Yona's guidance. We highly recommend Yona for any age level. He is a kind and nurturing mentor and person.
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Roger F. October 27, 2014
Ukulele · In studio
Yona is awesome; not only a great musician but also can help a "rank beginner" like me. He is insightful, creative at helping me overcome various hurdles to learning how to play the Ukulele. He is a gem, and I highly recommend him for all levels of musical ability.
Thanks, Yona.
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Jessica S. December 18, 2013
Guitar
an amazing teacher for any level or age!

Yonatan has inspired my whole family into playing music. He is incredibly patient with my two children, who are each excited about learning both ukulele and banjo with him. I am taking guitar, and could not be more pleased with Yonatan's thoughtful and very effective approach to teaching. I have already improved so much and endorse him wholeheartedly.
Jacob R. Berkeley, CA

About Jacob

I have tutored students of math and have given drum lessons since my second year of college. I've tutored students of all levels of math, from 6th grade mathematics to all college math subjects. I have given drum lessons to beginners and intermediate students, and I engage the students in ear training as well so that they can be more well-rounded musicians. I put an emphasis on catering my teaching to a student's method of learning, so that they feel comfortable and so that we get the best results!

Reviews

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Justin B. August 27, 2014
Drum · In studio
Jacob is teaching for his first time, but he knows how to guide his student as he had been a student of many different instructors. Jacob teaches the basics, the rudiments, and postures. I have taken drum lessons from different instructors, so I was confident that I was doing the right thing. However, Jacob helped me figure out bad habits that I've never doubted. Jacob not only understands the pros/cons of different drumming styles, but he also knows how to transition smoothly from one to another. He guides you through how improve your capabilities, because he has been through the same steps that you are about to go into. I am having a very pleasant time learning from Jacob.

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Whether you're just starting out or a seasoned pro, check out the Music articles on our blog.

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