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Hacienda Heights, CA Songwriting Lessons

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About Milton J.

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Corona, CA
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I have been teaching songwriting for over four years. These lessons are wholly rewarding as I love to conduct it as a "jam session" of sorts, helping my students frame their ideas into versus-chorus form, as well as helping them with basic music theory and sheet music transferring digitally with Sibelius 7 or in paper form.

About Milton
Hey there, everyone!

My name is Milton Carl Jackson II and I teach vocal, guitar, piano, and musical theatre lessons in the Inland Empire area.

I help those young, middle-aged, and not-as-young tap into their own soul through music so that they may help others find theirs as well. I believe that in order to entertain others with your voice or your instrument, one must first be able to entertain oneself - all the while having fun doing it! As a recent graduate of the University of California, Davis with a double major in Music History & Ethnomusicology and African-American & African Studies; a former co-host of the popular hip-hop radio show ATF Radio: All Things Fresh on KDVS 90.3 FM; a former Music Director of The Afterglow of UC Davis; and a recent graduate of American University with a Master's of Education in Business Education
, I have come in contact and learned from a vast amount of different musicians and educators. A classically-trained bass-baritone with roots in R&B, Soul, Rock, Pop, and Jazz, I have aspirations to help each and every student realize their full musical potential.

If you're looking for a teacher who will motivate and inspire you not only to learn your instrument of choice, but also how to perform it (whether on the big stage or in your living room for the family) and record it as well, I'm the perfect teacher for you. Learning to sing, play, and act beautifully doesn't have to be difficult -- we'll work on finding your voice or your style, all while having fun along the way!

I teach in-studio, in-home, and online lessons, so we can be flexible with the lesson type and schedule!

This is a perfect chance for you or your child who can't stop singing around the house or has dreams of shredding on the guitar or twinkling on the ivories to learn the fundamentals of music, start something new that keeps them or you focused, and have fun while doing it!

Feel free to contact me at show contact info for any questions and check out my student reviews and qualifications.

I look forward to meeting you and accompanying you or your child on your musical journey!!
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Reviews
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Caleb July 10, 2017
· Singing · Online
Milton is a very professional voice coach. He takes his time to explain everything and he knows what he is talking about!
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christina S. July 10, 2017
· Singing · Online
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Xavier July 4, 2017
· Singing · In studio
Cancelled last minute twice.
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Milton J.

Milton J.

Corona, CA 92879
(26)
starting at
$35 / 30-min

About Christian D.

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La Canada Flintridge, CA
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About Christian
Hello everyone! :)
I am a piano teacher from the Los Angeles area! I have two big passions in life. Music and teaching! And putting both together is truly a rewarding experience for me. That being said, I feel so lucky that I am a music teacher! I absolutely love to instill my passion for music in others, and I feel very accomplished when a student not only learns their instrument well, but also develops a passion for playing it! I always say that my main goal while teaching piano, is to make lessons both fun and rewarding! I believe that in order for a student to learn piano well, he/she must love playing it! I know that I've accomplished this "main goal" many times in the past, and I'm absolutely thrilled about doing it again and again!

I hold a Bachelors of Arts in Music degree from USC (my focus was Classical Piano). While pursui
ng this degree, I studied classical piano with renowned pianist Norman Krieger (among other teachers at USC). Also, I recently graduated with a masters degree (my focus was music composition) from UC Irvine. While there, I taught music theory to undergraduates. I think theory is important and it's one of the things I emphasize when I teach piano. When performing live, I love to play my own music but of course I also have a passion for performing the classics as well! I have also been playing keyboards in a rock band for several years.

*** Lesson Details ***
I teach Beginner to semi- advanced levels. When working with beginners, I like to start with teaching basic scales and chords before starting to work on actual pieces of music. Scales help develop finger technique and knowing what chords you're playing helps one understand music better. When we start to go over pieces, I like to emphasize phrasing and dynamics as much as possible. And I also help the students analyze the music (chords, etc) so that they, again, understand the music they're playing. At first, I like to choose what pieces a student plays. But as they get more advanced, I encourage them to choose the music themselves. In other words, I want them to play what they want to play. I find classical music very exciting and I try to help students "get into it" by having them find music they like, and learning it! Of course, I try to help with this process as much as possible and if a student only chooses music that I feel will not help them improve their piano skills (or music that is beyond their level), I will help the student find something else.

In general, after 3 to 6 months with me, a student will have learned some exciting pieces of music, they will have developed greater finger technique, they will understand the theory behind all the music they play, and they will have developed a greater passion for their instrument and for music itself!

*** Studio Equipment ***
lessons in living room, piano, room for parents

*** Travel Equipment ***
For piano students: I would expect them to have a piano or keyboard in their home. I would provide sheet music for the first few lessons. I am trained in the Alfred and Bastien methods and have used those books during my lessons. I would talk to the student over the first couple of lessons to find out whether I think they would benefit from those books.

For song writing and theory students: I would expect them to have blank musical notation paper. I would provide scores/books for study for the first several lessons. Later, I may ask them to purchase certain books if I feel it would help them.

*** Specialties ***
My background is mainly in classical music (although I have been playing keyboards in a rock band for the past several years).

I have been studying classical piano since I was 5, and I also studied it while pursuing my Bachelors degree in music at USC.

I have been teaching Beginning-Advanced music theory to college undergraduates for the past 2 years.

I hold a Masters degree in Music (my emphasis was music composition) from University of California, Irvine
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Christian D.

Christian D.

La Canada Flintridge, CA 91011
starting at
$35 / 30-min

About Burt G.

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Long Beach, CA
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Song writing is, as the saying goes, 10% inspiration and 90% perspiration.

A songwriter is a craftsman who not only can create an interesting beat or think up a lyric or a write a melody, but who knows how a song is put together.

The "perspiration" part can be as creative as the "inspiration" part when you are in control, looking at the whole picture.

About Burt
Pianist/Composer/Arranger Burt Griswold lives and works out of Long Beach California. He studied music composition and piano performance, western and eastern music theory, ethnic music, choral music and electronic music at Cal State San Bernardino, Golden West College, and Long Beach City College.

Burt performs as both soloist and as accompanist in rock and jazz ensembles and with choirs. He has also sung with various choral groups and recorded commercially with the group Meritage ("50 most loved Christmas Carols"). But was the choral director/arranger for the church Teaching of the Inner Christ in Long Beach, California for ten years.

Burt has a steady output of musical composition, from instrumental music, pop music and songs to compositions for full choir. Burt's music is a combination of live and digital instruments that can be
heard on the CD's "Meditation" volumes 1 and 2, and "Atalanta Fugiens: Fifty Alchemical Fugues".

*** Lesson Details ***
Lessons are always tailored to the needs of the student. If you are a beginner, you will learn how to play the piano and read music. If you already play and wish to take your playing to another level, you can learn how to play in a particular style of music. Or, if you are an aspiring composer or song writer, you can learn to develop your own ideas with Burt's help.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Kawai MP4 digital stage piano, Motu Digital Performer sequencing/arranging/recording software, Native Instruments Kontakt Sample Library, EMU Mps + Orchestral keyboard, Peavey keyboard amplifier.

*** Specialties ***
Besides teaching piano performance, basic musicianship, and theory, Burt's specializes in composition and will help you develop your own musical ideas.
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Reviews
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Carole R. February 24, 2014
· Piano ·
Excellent piano teacher!

Burt has been teaching my son (age 11) piano for over two years. He is an excellent teacher -- very knowledgeable, patient, keeps things light and fun, but at the same time is appropriately demanding.
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Burt G.

Burt G.

Long Beach, CA 90803
(1)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

About Samantha A.

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Los Angeles, CA

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Let's compose your heart in song

About Samantha
Grammy Nominated Samantha A. is a "big voice in a tiny body." With a Bachelors in Jazz Vocal Performance from the University of the Arts, Samantha has been actively singing and performing for over 10 years. Now, a 20-something, this singer/songwriter has released her first (self titled) EP, her newly released Stepping Stones EP (THESE WALLS VIDEO AVAILABLE ON YOUTUBE) and snagged a Grammy Nomination for her work on Blue Note Records artist Joey DeFrancesco's album, Never Can Say Goodbye, in 2011. Learn anything from breath control to songwriting to piano.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Keyboard, ukulele, microphone, recording equipment

*** Travel Equipment ***
*Piano/keyboard required

-has travel keyboard available if necessary
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Reviews
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Fernando A. March 17, 2017
· Singing · In studio
EXCELENT
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Nicole January 19, 2017
· Piano · In home
The lesson was informative and fun and my daughter thoroughly enjoyed it!
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brittany December 1, 2016
· Ukulele · In home
lessons are always fun and my boyfriend and I have learned a lot :)
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Samantha A.

Samantha A.

Los Angeles, CA 90034
(7)
starting at
$55 / 30-min

About Ryan L.

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Pasadena, CA
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Learn to write piano and vocal scores or just songs with simple voice and chords! I can teach students the fundamentals to advanced concepts in songwriting. Students will learn about lyrics, song form, harmonic movement, intent, styles, and accompaniment.

About Ryan
Ryan L. is a local composer, conductor, musician and musicologist. He holds a Masters degree in Musicology from California State University, Long Beach Cole Conservatory of Music. He is a professor of music at Woodbury University where he teaches a course in Music and Film. Additionally he is also the music director for Conundrum Theatre Co., Burbank Community Theater and Santa Ana College where he auditions, and rehearses singers, and the contracts and conducts the orchestra in all musical performances for the community.

As a classical/jazz trumpet player he has performed with tournament of Roses Honor band, the Pasadena Pops Orchestra, the Crown City Symphony and in various musical theater productions. He performs regularly with his jazz band the Crown City Combo in various venues in the greater LA area.

In the field of music
composition Ryan is an avid composer, composing for various genres and ensembles. Among these genres Ryan’s specialty is composing new musical theater works/songwriting. In 2010 he joined the Academy of New Musical Theater and with that organization he composed his first musical theater piece Shoot Ma! which premiered at the Colony Theater in Burbank. In 2011 he composed his second musical Experience Magic! A Musical Within a Magic Show, which premiered at the Sierra Madre Playhouse in 2012.
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Reviews
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Jonelle Pickett October 24, 2015
· Trumpet · In home
Excellent at giving pointers and exercises to help students improve sound quality. Patient, positive and personable.
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Stephanie R. December 10, 2014
· Trumpet · In home
Fabulous teacher! My son's taking beginning trumpet lessons. Ryan is patient, attentive, encouraging, and knowledgeable. Ryan is punctual and flexible when rescheduling needs to be arranged. He responds to email, phone calls, etc. in a timely manner. My son enjoys learning from him. It's a pleasure to have him as my son's teacher.
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Ryan L.

Ryan L.

Pasadena, CA 91107
(2)
starting at
$35 / 30-min
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About Stephanie H.

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Los Angeles, CA

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You'll learn the components of what makes a good song work. From structure, to chord progressions as well as guidance on lyric writing.

About Stephanie
Stephanie speaks both english and spanish fluently from having grown up in a multi cultural family, as well as having lived in seven different countries throughout her life. From a very early age, she studied and took lessons both in school and privately, for many different forms of dance, visual arts, & music (voice & piano). In 2012, Stephanie graduated with honors (Cum Laude), from the renown Berklee College of Music in Boston. She currently resides in the Los Angeles area and works both corporately and independently with the skills that she possesses.
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Artist Bio:

Stephanie is a vocal performance and songwriting graduate from the renowned Berklee College of Music in Boston. Having taken workshops and classes from artists such as John Mayer, James & Livingston Taylor, as wel
l as Amy Heidemann (lead singer from Karmin), Stephanie is a well-coached vocalist and songwriter. She has performed for the president of Costa Rica, the ambassador & Deputy Chief of Mission of the Unites States Embassy, as well as sung back up for the Grammy award winning Latin American band Maná. She has been giving voice lessons and songwriting workshops for around 5 years since she graduated. She teaches a full range of subjects, including ear training, music theory, beginning keyboarding & accompanying skills, vocal health, vocal technique, the Alexander Technique, choreography for performance, relaxation techniques, developing proporioception/interoception as well as an emotional and energetic awareness for a better interpretation of songs and optimal vocal quality. She also gives songwriting workshops and mentors/co-writes with her students so that they are able to master their songwriting skills and develop them as artists.
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Reviews
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Madi November 7, 2017
· Vocal Training · Online
Awesome, patient and so very talented!
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Leathia R. S. October 24, 2017
· Singing · Online
Fun time today.
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Matthew September 28, 2017
· Singing · Online
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Stephanie H.

Stephanie H.

Los Angeles, CA 90045
(81)
starting at
$20 / 30-min

About Sarah L.

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Mission Viejo, CA

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Learn to write pop songs that convey the message you wish for your audience to hear. Lyrics and melody! Learn how to free the mind and let your imagination take over while pouring your heart into music! I have learned how to write pop songs from the great Debbie Gibson and I have won many awards for my songwriting. (ex. USA Songwriting competition, LA Music Awards, and the Bilboard World Song Contest)

About Sarah
I am a Vocal performance graduate from California State University Fullerton and my whole music academic life has really made me passionate about helping young singers and performers.
I have sung around the world, most notably; Paris, Trossingen, Rome, and St. Petersburg. I am on the grammy committee and have won many awards for my Vocal and Songwriting abilities including; the USA Songwriting Competition and the Los Angeles Music Awards. My years of Classical, Musical Theatre, and Pop technique can help me tailor my teaching style to what ever the students wish their voices to become. While at CSUF, I was in the top Chamber ensemble, The University Singers. I am currently employed with the Pacific Chorale under the baton of Maestro Carl st. Clair and Dr. Robert Istad.

I would also be available to teach music theory as well.
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Sarah L.

Sarah L.

Fullerton, CA 92831
starting at
$50 / 30-min

About Lynn S.

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Los Angeles, CA
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I have been writing songs since I was in grade school. Currently I'm in the process of recording a debut EP under the name of Redgrave Jones. I LOVE writing songs and would LOVE LOVE LOVE to help you write your own songs!

About Lynn
I have been studying voice and piano and performing on stage in various capacities since I was a small child, acting professionally on stage, in films and TV for most of my adult life. I've been blessed to study with countless music luminaries in varying genres, from jazz and classical to rock n' roll and blues.

I studied music at the university level both at Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA and The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music in NYC. I received my BFA in Jazz Vocal Performance from The New School in 2008. I was given an incredible foundation in ear-training, music theory, composition, arranging and song-writing through these institutions.

My diverse music education and experience means I am able to teach music in many different styles and music of many different genres. I can accompany my students on piano a
nd help them to prepare for auditions. I can teach how to read music, to play classically on the piano, to read jazz charts, or help you figure out parts for a chord progression for a pop or rock song.

My acting training is equally many-faceted and I have an incredibly strong foundation based in the teachings of Sanford Meisner, Stanislavsky, Lee Strasberg and Larry Moss. I use the knowledge of these great teachers along with the wisdom I've accumulated from MY mentors over the years in my teaching and coaching.
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Reviews
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Philip June 14, 2017
· Piano · In studio
Lynn is a fantastic teacher! She effortlessly bridges genres and styles. She is personable, dedicated and inspiring. We are incredibly fortunate to have found her.
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Chris December 16, 2016
· Piano · In home
Lynn is stellar. Her background and training are substantial and impressive. She is prompt, courteous, calm and absolutely wonderful with our daughter (Age 9) who has challenges focusing and staying on task. Lynn is kind, but navigates the lessons confidently, fluidly and with a focused energy. She works with our daughter's playfulness, incorporates humor and positive, encouraging energy into every lesson. Our daughter has shown signs of great improvement with Lynn. Lynn assigns tasks and practicing points each week for our daughter to work on which are balanced and also bring in a component of improvisation, which is SO helpful for kids who have challenges with focusing. Lynn is awesome, highly recommend!
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Jessica December 6, 2016
· Piano · In home
Lynn is amazing!! Not only do my children love her as a person (they literally wait at the window on Wednesday nights) but she knows how to keep them engaged and interested in learning throughout their lessons. My son has learned to play actual songs in less than 10 lessons. Can't recommend her enough!
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Lynn S.

Lynn S.

Los Angeles, CA 90005
(3)
starting at
$35 / 30-min

About Socrates S.

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Los Angeles, CA

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Learn College Level Songwriting skills. I have 7 years of songwriting and i have worked with the best artist development teacher in Los Angeles, including Robin Randal who wrote songs for the tv series "Bay Watch" and many others. I will teach their techniques and exercises to writing popular hit songs as well as give you professional insights and encouragement to finishing song.

About Socrates
Hello, My name is Socrates, I'm originally from Brazil and I came to Los Angeles to study and pursue my dreams in Music. I went through a lot to get where I am now and I got my College Degree from Musicians Institute in the Vocal Program. I May look young but I have a lot of experience and, although I love teaching, I am also a performer and continue to do so as much as I can.
Not only will I be able to teach a variety of vocal techniques, but I will also help with the performing side of singing, where you can express yourself truthfully.
"I believe music has an amazing power to touch one's Heart, and my dream is to share this power"
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Reviews
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Royer March 12, 2017
· Singing · In studio
Great teacher! I noticed a difference in my voice in just the first few lessons. He really takes time to develop the different voice registers. Would highly recommend taking lessons with Socrates.
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Socrates S.

Socrates S.

Los Angeles, CA 90038
(1)
starting at
$20 / 30-min

About Russell S.

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Los Angeles, CA
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If you are ready to take your music skills SERIOUSLY then stop wasting time and money on teachers who don't fully understand what they are teaching. My name is Russell Steedle and I have been playing guitar professionally for 19 years and engineering and producing records for over 10. I have worked with artists such as Sean Kingston, Lifehouse, Disney's Caityln Taylor Love and have composed music to 100s of your favorite TV shows! Want to learn to record? produce? write? dive into theory?

About Russell
Russell is an incredibly gifted music producer born in Las Vegas, NV. With his first #1 Billboard record (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rookie_(EP) ) under his belt and endorsements and support of major music companies such as Fender and Dean Markley strings, Russell has toured the US opening for National Artists playing for audiences as large as 30,000.

In 2012, Russ inked a deal with Mach 1 Music and learned the rough ropes of the music industry as a part of a team selling over 19 million records worldwide. Soon after, Russ joined TV/Filmsound powerhouse “Signature Tracks” (signature-tracks.com) through which he has produced over 550 songs for networks such as Disney, MTV, VH1, BET, ABC, NBC, CBS, and many many more

Currently Russ performs with and produces talent from all over the world including Grammy Award winning artists a
nd songwriters The Jackie Boyz, Chart Topping Artist Sean Kingston, Disney's Caitlyn Taylor Love and many more!
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Reviews
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Edward J. October 5, 2016
· Arrangement and Composition · Online
Russ is a truly exceptional individual and very knowledgeable in all aspects of music theory, production and the industry. Not only is he an great at what he does, but he can also relate and impart that knowledge onto others - a skill that is surprisingly rare among high-caliber performers. The price per lesson seems higher than average at first glance, but I feel that the speed and amount of knowledge you acquire per dollar is actually lower than that of other instructors. Really.

He is also active in the industry, so the skills he teaches are current.

I take lessons with Russ online through Skype for EDM production in FL Studio. He is always punctual and promptly communicates if anything comes up. His teaching style carefully balances the need to provide guidance, while allowing freedom for individual artistic development. Every week, I start a composition or track analysis project that applies what I've learned in previous lessons, and I will submit it to Russ to discuss things that went well and things to work on in the future. In this way, you are not just being lectured, but you are actually learning to collaborate with an exceptional musician. I've personally experienced how constant application and feedback facilitates rapid learning.

He certainly is a serious musician, but that doesn't mean he doesn't have a fun personality. He is engaging and inspirational.

I would, without reservation nor hesitation, highly recommend Russ to anyone who is interested in professional music production.
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Kirsten August 29, 2016
· Acoustic Guitar · In home
Encouraged and inspired my daughter's love for music. Taught guitar lessons in a fun engaging way that also challenged her creativity. Great teacher!
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Josh August 29, 2016
· Music Recording · In studio
I really enjoy learning from Russ. He is good at relating things back to a way I can understand and improve. He is so versatile in his music knowledge that I can litterally throw anything his way that I'm curious about and he points me in the right direction. I've taken guitar, bass, vocal, and even production lessons from Russ. By far the most value I have ever got from an instructor. At first I was a little hesitant because of the higher price than others, but when you start noticing that you are learning stuff other teachers had no idea about, it makes sense to pay a little more for the quality you get out of his lessons. Thanks Russ for all the lessons over the last few years! Wouldn't be where I am today without ya!
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Russell S.

Russell S.

Los Angeles, CA 90028
(17)
starting at
$150 / 60-min

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Songwriting Lesson Reviews from Students

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lessons and counting!

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Recent Songwriting Articles from the Blog

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

6 Destructive Beliefs That Hold Beginner Musicians Back

6 Destructive Beliefs That Hold Beginner Musicians Back

Do you ever wonder how good your skills would be now if you started practicing a year ago? A question like this should motivate, not dishearten you. In this article, guest writer Elizabeth Kane will take you through six destructive beliefs you might face as you're learning how to become a musician, and how you can overcome them...   Mind Over Matter Your mind is a powerful tool. Your thoughts dictate just about every conscious decision you make. Whether you're a beginner guitari … Read More

6 Destructive Beliefs That Hold Beginner Musicians Back
Do you ever wonder how good your skills would be now if you started practicing a year ago? A question like this should motivate, not dishearten you. In this article, guest writer Elizabeth Kane will take you through six destructive beliefs you might face as you're learning how to become a musician, and how you can overcome them...   Mind Over Matter Your mind is a powerful tool. Your thoughts dictate just about every conscious decision you make. Whether you're a beginner guitari
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Feeling stuck? Get back on track with these helpful tips for writing a song, courtesy of Perth Amboy, NJ teacher Jeff S...   One of the most frequent problems that songwriting students encounter is pushing past writer's block and generating ideas for new songs. So here are several tips for writing a song that will help you overcome a creative dry spell and get you back to creative productivity. Start With A Title Think of some interesting subjects that you think would make goo
How to Write Lyrics: Steps to Success for Any Musical Style
Interested in learning how to write lyrics and songs? Here, New Jersey guitar teacher Matthew H. explains an easy 3-step process to follow...  Songwriting is not easy; just ask any composer or lyricist. While the musical composition is highly important (making sure the melody is catchy without sounding too trite), having a strong, relatable message to go along with a great tune is just as, if not more, important. Here are some tips on how to write lyrics for a good song. 1) What is the
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This article was originally published on Soundfly and is being shared as part of Songwriting Week! Join the conversation on social media (#SongwritingWeek) for even more tips, articles, and resources.   So many musicians and songwriters stress the importance of collaboration. But without knowing how collaboration could benefit your work, why would you share an idea you’ve spent countless hours thinking about, only to open yourself up to criticism? As it turns out, all those advice

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