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Holy City, CA Songwriting Lessons

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Popular Songwriting Teachers near Holy City, CA

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About Peter C.

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Goodyear, AZ
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Having had experience in Australian Symphony Orchestras and ensembles, Peter has the passion and expertise to take you as far as you want to go

About Peter
I began piano lessons at four years of age, and was blessed to have an amazing piano teacher, who taught me for 14 years. She gave me a passion to teach others and impart to them a love for music. I have carried on that calling and taught hundreds of adults and children over the last 30 years. I am very thorough in my method and customize each lesson around the goals and dreams of each student. I incorporate theory, ear training and technical into all my lessons, regardless of the style of music they are learning. This gives my students an all-round musical education and appreciation for this wonderful gift they have in their hands.

I have experience in the professional music world as a pianist and french horn player, performing with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Australian Opera Chorus and Orchestra, Sydney Sinfonia, Sydney Philharmo
nic Orchestra and Choir, as well as productions of "Cats", "Phantom of the Opera", Sesame Street, and touring all over Australia, U.S.A. and Israel. I have also been a part of the worship teams at Hillsong Church and C3 Church Australia.

I studied at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, and also received my Licentiate Diploma from the Trinity College of London (L.T.C.L.) in French Horn (Teaching) and Licentiate Diploma from the Trinity College of London (L.T.C.L.) in Piano (Performance). So my experience not only comes from an inspiring teacher, but also from hundreds of performances on stages across the world working with the finest of musicians, singers, conductors and worship leaders.

I love music, and more so, love imparting it to others.

*** Lesson Details ***
Students come away from their lessons inspired and excited about their ability to accomplish their dreams. Whether it is to play 'Phantom of the Opera' or an Adele song, Debussy's Claire De Lune or Jingle Bells, I show them how to do it and help them get there. I am very thorough, taking no short cuts, but making it fun to learn an instrument. You will be amazed at what you are playing in three to six months!

*** Specialties ***
Classical, Jazz, Rock, Contemporary Christian
...
Reviews
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Sam October 7, 2016
· Bass Guitar · In studio
Peter is a down to earth pro. It has been a pleasure to learn under him.
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Abby July 30, 2016
· Singing · In home
We have only been to one lesson, but already love Peter! His enthusiasm, kindness and encouragement, made the lesson so fun! It is obvious he Is very experienced in music and understands how to teach well. We are so blessed to have found him!
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Andrew K. December 28, 2015
· French Horn · In studio
My son has studied french horn with Peter for 2 years now, and he looks forward to lessons every week. Under his guidance I've watched my teenager excel as a musician, and I've grown to admire Peter's teaching methods. We drive halfway across town to get to there ... because HE'S WORTH IT. It's true that Peter listens to his student's goals. He has literally tailored the lessons around my sons auditions while simultaneously giving him the necessary building blocks to continue growing musically.
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Peter C.

Peter C.

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(11)
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$30 / 30-min

About Hristo V.

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San Jose, CA
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I design my lessons with the specific student goals in mind.

For Beginner students: we will start by exploring rhythm concepts and understanding how to read music. Learning the physics of the guitar and exploring the notes in the first few positions. Learning open position chords, and simple chords progressions, major and pentatonic scales,etc.

For Intermediate students: we will continue expanding our knowledge of the higher positions of the guitar, as well as develop better sight-reading skills. Bar cords and chord transposition, and music theory. Expanding our scalar vocabulary to modes, and minor scales. Learning arpeggios and classical etudes.

For Advance students: Close interval voicings, jazz improvisation, chord to scale relationships, and harmonic substitutions are some of the concepts we will cover. Learning solo guitar playing (chord melody), incorporating walking bass lines, transcription skill and arranging skills.

I specialize in Jazz guitar, improvisation,

About Hristo
Hristo is an impressionistic modern jazz guitarist and composer from Sofia, Bulgaria. Now residing in the San Francisco Bay Area, Hristo leads a variety of modern jazz formations, ranging from duets to quintets. Hristo has toured nationally and internationally, appearing at some of the most prestigious jazz clubs and festivals, and has also performed guitar clinics in Europe and Japan. He has written more than 270 original compositions, many articles on jazz improvisation, and a book on chordal theory and construction entitled Between the Voicings: A New Approach to Chord Building for Guitarists. The Hristo Quartet’s 2009 debut album, Song for Messambria (First Orbit Sounds Music) quickly received outstanding reviews by the international jazz community and was selected as one of the six best jazz albums of 2009 by E-JAZZ NEWS.
“His sophi
sticated and adventurous work is imbued with shimmering harmonies and lyrical improvisations.” – JAZZTIMES MAGAZINE
“His multihued compositions are like impressionistic sound paintings.” – JAZZIZ
“You just won’t find a jazz guitarist (on the planet) these days who has such essential communication skills through his fingers.” – Improvijazzation Nation Magazine
“Hristo may be one of the best kept secrets in jazz today. He is the epitome of sonic gold.” – DIGITAL JAZZ NEWS
“Hristo plays as the cultural end result of his life experiences. Simply put, he plays more so from the heart than he does the head.” – Critical Jazz
“A richly textured album full of strong melodic and rhythmic ideas and with some superb playing throughout.” – THE JAZZ MANN (England)
As jazz critic Edward Blanco describes: “Heis the newest guitarist to enter the national jazz scene and does so with a stunner of a recording in Song for Messambria, one of the finest debut albums I've had the pleasure of appraising this year.”
The record presents a unique blend of ECM-style modern jazz, classical, and Brazilian tone textures, and showcases the completely unique and masterful interpretation of the jazz idiom by each one of its members. In late 2009, Hristo released his second studio album featuring Latin Grammy-nominated pianist Weber Iago. The Secrets of an Angel is an impressionistic landscape painted by the delightful and graceful conversation between the two instruments (guitar/piano).
As jazz critic Brad Walseth describes: “On the heels of his impressive debut recording, Song for Messambria, guitarist Hristo returns along with pianist Weber Iago for a wonderful guitar/piano duet recording - The Secrets of an Angel...while the gentle title track shimmers like a glistening iceberg on a cold sea. The delightful two-part ‘The Last Pirate” is a highlight - brilliantly showcasing the exciting romantic bend inherent in his music, while the nostalgic lullaby “Leka Nosht (Good Night)” recalls a faraway youth and rounds out this fine release.”
In 2010 Hristo wrote a large scale jazz work (The Perperikon Suite) especially to be premiered at the 53rd Monterey Jazz Festival. This 7 movements jazz suite is inspired by the ancient Thracian city of Perperikon (located on the territory of Bulgaria), and combines orchestral, classical, jazz, and fusion elements depicting the history and mystery of this enchanting place. The work marks Hristo third album and one of his most adventurous and sophisticated works up to date. For the recording of this project the Hristo Quartet was joined by virtuoso vibraphonist and multi-instrumentalist Christian Tamburr.
As jazz critic Dan Bilawsky describes: “Shimmering harmonies resonate throughout these modern jazz marvels, and the soloists work their way around and through this accessible and exciting music with equal measures of taste, technique and spirit. His pieces are peppered with signpost sonorities and ideas that often reappear throughout a given song, creating a sense of continuity and thematic steadiness that develops around individual soloists. While this group ably establishes its own aural identity, which threads its way through the whole album, each movement of the suite has different strengths and a unique sonic footprint. Brought to life as a tale of two cities, The Perperikon Suite ultimately occupies its own wondrous world within the confines of its jazz borders.”
As jazz critic Brent Black describes: “There is an incredible warmth to his playing, a fluidity of movement and direction held firmly in place by a stellar quintet that provides ample support for the lyrical imagery created on this release. Aside from the superior sound which almost smacks of a live in the studio recording, there is a true working band feel that he has been able to obtain. He displays an unparalleled versatility moving from the flash of “The Acropolis” to the more introspective “The Southern City” allowing for a wonderfully paced recording. The drumming of Joe DeRose creates a special dynamic tension on the tune “The Great Hall.” A release that ends far too soon. Wonderfully crafted, well paced and a sonic tapestry that stands up as well as any release for this past year.”
As jazz critic Bruce Lindsay describes: “The music, performed by a terrific quintet, is beautiful: it captures images not of a city in ruins but of a city full of life, of vibrant activity. The Perperikon Suite is an impressive creation. Each individual tune is beautifully crafted, but so, too, is the Suite as a whole. His response to the ancient city is remarkable in both its conception and its performance.”
As jazz critic Michael Bailey describes: “Many time motifs are used throughout this suite. Tick-tock ascending and descending figures pass as a thread through cloth, to hold this musical garment—a coat of many colors—together. He achieves this effect with no apparent effort or change in guitar tone or approach. Merely by affecting the time signatures, he makes his magic. The Perperikon Suite is soft-spoken and brainy music that exists out of the ordinary.”

As jazz critic Brad Walseth describes: “The new songs are the strongest he has written yet, and the addition of Tamburr serves to take the music to an even higher level. Hristo, meanwhile, continues to impress the listener with his addictive blend of jazz with touches of classical, Brazilian and Eastern European influences in both his playing and songwriting. In lieu of visiting the legendary site yourself, listeners are urged to take a musical journey to the ancient location as seen through the senses of Hristo and shared with you through his highly satisfying musical presentation.”
As jazz critic Ed Blanco describes: “Hristo and his inspirational quintet provide an all-new experience on The Perperikon Suite, a concept album that is accessible, creative and a pleasure to spin often.”
In 2012 Hristo embarked on yet another musical chapter of his life. Heartmony is the long awaited and highly anticipated follow up to the first duet recording by the guitarist and pianist Weber Iago (The Secrets of an Angel). As the title of the record will suggest, Heartmony explores a truly intimate, honest, and emotional conversation between the two instruments. The music, which transports you from impressionistic landscapes to folkloric tales and from melancholic memories to meditative trances, is simply the purest harmonious sounds he has put on tape up to date. Straight from the heart, healing energy that will embrace you long after you listen to it.
“An absolutely wonderful recording.” – JAZZTIMES
“If ever there were a marriage between classical music and jazz then this Heartmony is it. Hristo and Weber Iago have created a very special experience.” – Grady Harp (Amazon.com)
“Both on and off the bandstand, he is an artist who wears his emotions on his sleeve. His new “Heartmony,” a duo session with his frequent collaborator, Brazilian pianist Weber Iago, provides a master class in the way a chord or harmonic progression can evoke a flood of sensations.” – Andrew Gilbert (San Jose Mercury News)
“Guitarist Hristo and longtime collaborator, pianist Weber Iago, have created a work of sublime musicality with Heartmony. Exquisitely lyrical, although a bit too sweet, this opus brings together multiple musical influences into a coherent and cohesive, multilayered narrative, the momentum of which does not slack from the first few notes to the very last. He and Iago interweave long musical threads into a shimmering soundscape of serene beauty.” – Hrayr Attarian (All About Jazz)
As jazz critic Brent Black describes: “Heartmony is a sonic mosaic pieced together from heartfelt feelings and emotions carried through time and communicated in an incredibly heartwarming and emotional presentation that exemplifies the zen concept of less is more perhaps as well as any recording of the last decade. The musical sound of one hand clapping. His and Weber's music transcends the more traditional jazz idiom in much the same fashion that their recorded work here is that of a more cohesive unified voice with subtle shadings, lyrical swells and the textured nuances that creates music that is to be experienced. An incredibly beautiful artistic statement of personal experience.”
“Guitarist Hristo and pianist Weber Iago sounds like a perfect match in a musical heaven, if such things exist. What I’m saying here is that this is a duet album that sounds perfect, music made from the heart and soul. There’s warmth, there’s care, and there’s a human quality to this that no machine can replicate, and it is that Heartmony that makes this a powerful album worth listening to repeatedly.” – John Books
As jazz critic Dan Bilawsky describes: “The eleven originals are all musical offerings from the heart and soul, but this isn't a one-dimensional recital. Some songs are full of life and positive energy, while others have a sense of regret and nostalgia sewn into their being, but they're all painted in sharp, vivid colors, thanks to the skills of both artistic practitioners at play.”
“This set of guitar-piano duets is quietly emotional, always intriguing and quite original. His clear toned guitar blends in perfectly with Iago’s powerful piano and the two musicians often seem to think as one. Heartmony is quite thought provoking and well worthy of many close listens. Highly recommended.” – Scott Yanow
“Hristo and Iago play together with the assurance born of long and fruitful collaboration. They know each other well, and it shows in the skillful way they complement each other. They take a beautiful melody and run with it. They wring every bit of emotion out of it. There are passages in a composition like “Memories in Black and White,” nocturnal moments in “The Last Leaves which Fell in Fall,” that sound like they could have been written by a nineteenth century Polish Romantic. Then there are moments in the same songs where there are glints of French Impressionists.” – Jack Goodstein (blogcritics.com)
“Hristo is a gifted composer and master guitarist whose stylish approach to the music makes him a hidden wonder of the jazz world. Heartmony is an intelligent musical statement and gentle follow up to his previous works, a relaxing soulful musical experience sure to touch a piece of your heart.” – Ed Blanco (E-JAZZ NEWS)
In January 2013, Hristo released “Familiar Fields” – his 5th record as a leader (and his 2nd quartet recording). The music presented in this session clearly displays the multidimensional tonal evolution of the band and each one of its individual members. The addition of drummer extraordinaire Mike Shannon to the quartet establishes a portal to new sonic landscapes and emotions to be explored in this collection of 9 original pieces by the guitarist. The music, which takes the listener through the realms of impressionistic, classical, jazz, experimental, and new age, always retains the unique sonic footprint that has brought critical acclaim to the quartet all over the world.
“He  paints a vivid pastoral landscape with epic sweep, often recalling the big-sky sound of Pat Metheny. Obviously, these musicians are more than comfortable with one another, as one delicate solo seamlessly segues into another.” – JAZZIZ

“Once again he has produced an immaculately crafted, often supremely beautiful album.” –
The Jazz Mann (England)

“If Pat Metheny and Larry Carlton are considered the kings of impressionistic jazz guitar, then certainly Hristo is a crown prince and ready to lead a palace coup. In fact, “Familiar Fields” easily stands equal to even their greatest albums. Part of the reason for that has to be credited to Hristo’s choice of musicians in the quartet. The musical affinity and effortless grace shines forth on this album like few recordings I have ever heard. They share a single heart and mind that bursts forth in illumination on every track. There is no weak moment or weak player on this album.” – Travis Rogers (JAZZTIMES)
“Over the past few years, Bulgarian-born, Bay Area-based guitarist and composer Hristo has consistently crafted music of great lyrical beauty. With his self-named quartet or quintet, or in duet with pianist and frequent collaborator Weber Iago, he has advanced a sound that manages to sound intimate and epic at the same time. He does so again on Familiar Fields (First Orbit Sounds), his latest recording with his quartet, which welcomes new member Mike Shannon on drums. As he has on previous recordings, He makes use of classical imagery and narratives in song titles such as “The Prophet’s Daughter,” “The Mask of Agamemnon” and “Wounded by a Poisoned Arrow,” the last of which is our selection. His instrumental voice bears echoes of the tonal warmth and big-sky sweep of Pat Metheny, as he and Iago, his beyond-simpatico musical compatriot, switch off on leads, riding the rolling hillocks of rhythm provided by Shannon and acoustic bassist Dan Robbins. Shannon proves an exceptional addition to the group, responding to and driving his companions in equal measure.” – JAZZIZ
As jazz critic Hrayr Attarian describes: “Bulgaria-born and San Francisco-based Hristo has established himself as a modern day troubadour. His enchanting and fantastical tunes have the feel of medieval ballads abundantly peppered with futuristic sounds. His sixth release, Familiar Fields, presents nine impressionistic originals that showcase his maturing compositional skills as well as the superlative, improvisational talents of his working quartet. With each album he oeuvre ripens and becomes more sophisticated without losing its delightfully spirited edge. Familiar Fields not only stands on its own merit as sublime music but also whets the appetite for what is yet to come.”

“Familiar Fields is a highly intelligent, thought-provoking Impressionistic escapade.” – Nicholas Mondello (All About Jazz)

“This release is a clear statement from an artist comfortable with who he is and where he is going. There are no absolute truths in music but instead there are shades of gray which he and his quartet fill in with the precision of a surgeon and the soul of a true artist. Never caught up in the academics of his works, he instead conducts a sonic exploration with the end result being a release that gives up something new with each subsequent spin. An ebb and flow unmatched, or perhaps unlike him, an ebb and flow that other artists simply can not match. As close to perfect as it gets!” – Brent Black (CriticalJazz.com)

“The Hristo Quartet, ladies and gentlemen, is in peak form. They have no competition: no other music in the jazz idiom is quite as satisfying.” – Grady Harp (Amazon.com)
“The musical bond between guitarist Hristo and pianist Weber Iago is as strong as that of Chick Corea and Gary Burton, with proof being their two sublime duet recordings, The Secrets of an Angel and Heartmony, as well as three small group sessions under his name. For the Familiar Fields quartet date with regular bassist Dan Robbins and new drummer Mike Shannon, chose nine gems to play from his vault of more than 270 original compositions. As usual, as one listens to his music, the words lyrical, impressionistic, spiritual, and passionate come to mind, and also his term "heartmony," which he defines as the simultaneous combination of feelings and emotions, especially when produced by experiences, memories, and stimulations pleasing to the heart, body, and soul." – Scott Albin (JAZZTIMES)
“The emotional essence of any Hristo recording can be seen before it’s heard via the distinctive oil paintings the guitarist creates for his CD jackets. his artwork for Familiar Fields is impressionistic, haunting and autumnal, the same qualities that characterize his latest collection of tunes. The foursome’s interplay is highly intricate, resulting in emotive tunes that wax and wane in intensity. Whether you call it post-bop or post-fusion, his brand of jazz is passionate and ethereal. He has developed into a formidable guitarist and intelligent composer, and since he’s only 32 years old, his best work may be yet to come.” – Ed Kopp (Jazziz)
“Within his tone and technique, it’s not difficult to hear the influences of Wes Montgomery, Pat Metheny and Lee Ritenour. He is adept at the full range of extended techniques but is most often described - justifiably - as an impressionist.” – Karl Ackermann (All About Jazz)
“Of the many attributes that Bulgarian (San Francisco based) guitarist Hristo possesses - refined technical abilities, warm tonality, and expressive soulfulness - his gift to convey beautiful stories through intricate composition is always at the heart of his appeal.” – Mark F. Turner

In October 2013, Hristo released his 6th album as a leader. "Rhodopa" is a beautifully crafted sonic pairing of the extremely emotional and lyrical Bulgarian folklore and the multidimensional and deeply textured world of modern jazz harmony. On his new music journey, the guitarist is joined by virtuoso Bulgarian clarinetist Liubomir Krastev. As jazz critic Dan Bilawsky describes: “Hristo and Liubomir Krastev cover everything from the mystical to the mournful and the grim to the gleeful on this absorbing duo date.”

“Hristo takes improvisational music to a third dimension of texture you can feel. Rhodopa is my selection for album of the year for 2013. Critically acclaimed guitar virtuoso Hristo started the year with the release of the highly regarded Familiar Fields. With Rhodopa, has now assumed his rightful place as a global virtuoso of unrivaled talent and ability. As artistically gifted as he is technically proficient, Hristo moves to the head of the pack with this stellar outing.” – Brent Black (CriticalJazz.com)

“Hristo boldly departs from the group setting and gives the audience even more of what they crave - soulful arrangements and virtuosity with heart. There is a beauty and an elegance that comes through on each and every one of Hristo's recordings. The music he composes, the arrangements he crafts, the musicians that he assembles together and the dignity and reverence of his musicianship speak of the heart of the man and his love of life.” – Travis Rogers (JAZZTIMES)

As jazz critic Hrayr Attarian describes: “The warm, poetic tunes are like fairy tales in verse. They are imbued with nostalgia, and shimmer with a variety of muted colors and sentiments. Krastev's softly undulating tones waver against his vibrating strings in a spiritual celebration of abstract beauty. This thematically unified work is a genre bending, elegant and satisfying opus and a new high for he who continues to excel himself on each fresh release.”

“Modern jazz guitarist, pianist and composer Hristo always refreshes the ear and the soul with his inordinately sensitive, mesmerizing, and beautiful approach to music. He is unique - and artist who explores every avenue of approach to both folk music and jazz and the result is an experience that simply no one else can match.” – Grady Harp (Amazon.com)

“With Rhodopa, guitarist/composer Hristo and clarinetist Liubomir Krastev meld musical minds, dive exuberantly into an array of earthy Bulgarian folk material and come up with four hands of beauty. The result is a panoply of aural color, emotion, and technical artistry.” – Nicholas Mondello (All About Jazz)

As jazz critic Ed Blanco describes: "Rhodopa is an instrumental serenade of Bulgarian folklore music interpreted by a world-class guitarist and clarinetist. Hristo and Liubomir Krastev deliver an enchanting and relaxing escape from reality with a fifty-three minute encounter of soul-reaching music."

"You just won’t find a jazz guitarist (on the planet) these days who has such essential communication skills through his fingers. With Liubomir’s reeds, they form a cultural jazz experience that can’t be compared with anything else!" – Dick Metcalf (Improvijazzation Nation Magazine)

On top of leading his own quartet, quintet, duo projects, and co-leading the group SEVA, Hristo also co-writes and plays guitar with Joe De Rose and Amici - an energetic jazz/fusion formation lead by drummer Joe De Rose. Hristo has appeared on countless radio shows/programs all around the world.

Hristo has also performed in world-class jazz venues and festivals including Yoshi’s Jazz Club (Oakland, CA), Bach Dancing and Dynamite Society (Half Moon Bay, CA), Kuumbwa Jazz Center (Santa Cruz, CA), Anthology (San Diego, CA), Catalina Jazz Club (Hollywood, CA), The Jazz Corner (Hilton Head Island, SC), Heidi's Jazz Club (Cocoa Beach, FL), Alvas Showroom (San Pedro, CA), The Jazz Station (Eugene, OR), Egan's Ballard Jam House (Seattle, WA), Timucua White House (Orlando, FL), Ivories Jazz Club (Portland, OR), The Herbst Theater (San Francisco, CA), SOhO Jazz Club (Santa Barbara, CA), as well as major jazz festivals including the 53rd Monterey Jazz Festival (Monterey, CA), 2009/2010/2012/2013 AT&T San Jose Jazz Festival (San Jose, CA), 2010 and 2012 Redwood City “Jazz on Main” (Redwood City, CA), Okazaki Jazz Festival (Okazaki, Japan) and many more.

Hristo holds a B.A. in Music (Jazz Studies) from San Jose State University in San Jose, CA.
He has also studied in the prestigious Roland Music Academy in Caracas, Venezuela.

Students can benefit from Hristo's completely amazing knowledge on the instrument as well as music/harmony theory. He will work and design unique and specific goals tailored to each student's individual interests. His dedication and passion for teaching are first class!!!

*** Lesson Details ***
I design my lessons with the specific student goals in mind.

For Beginner students: we will start by exploring rhythm concepts and understanding how to read music. Learning the physics of the guitar and exploring the notes in the first few positions. Learning open position chords, and simple chords progressions, major and pentatonic scales,etc.

For Intermediate students: we will continue expanding our knowledge of the higher positions of the guitar, as well as develop better sight-reading skills. Bar cords and chord transposition, and music theory. Expanding our scalar vocabulary to modes, and minor scales. Learning arpeggios and classical etudes.

For Advance students: Close interval voicings, jazz improvisation, chord to scale relationships, and harmonic substitutions are some of the concepts we will cover. Learning solo guitar playing (chord melody), incorporating walking bass lines, transcription skill and arranging skills.

*** Studio Equipment ***
A specific music room with a few guitars, a keyboard, amps, and recording equipment and music stands

*** Travel Equipment ***
I provide my guitar and amp.
Students should provide their guitars and amps (if needed)

*** Specialties ***
I specialize in Jazz guitar, improvisation, harmonic studies and theory.
Chord melodies, building lines, phrasing, voice-leading, chordal improvisation, and re-harmonization/substitution.
...
Reviews
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Kim L. April 26, 2014
· Guitar ·
Outstanding Performer

Hristo is the most inspirational teacher I've every had the pleasure to learn from. He shares his talent in a way that I look forward to every lesson. His patience and positive reinforcement encourages me to keep practicing. He selects the appropriate music for my level and teaches all genres. Thank you for working with me every week. I hope I get to work with him for as long as I can until he becomes too famous to continue teaching us.
Silhouette-80
AllenH April 4, 2012
· ·
Great Instructor

I've been taking lessons from Hristo for a couple of months now. He is friendly, affable, and extremely patient. I enjoy our lessons, and have learned quite a bit in the short time we have been working together.
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JeanetteY March 7, 2012
· ·
wonderful instructor and very accomodating. We are appreciative of his talents!!
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Hristo V.

Hristo V.

San Jose, CA 95118
(9)
starting at
$65 / 30-min

About Jesse M.

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Sunnyvale, CA

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Learn about rhythm, melody, harmony, and dynamics and how they affect your songwriting. Break down songs that you like to learn about the elements that make you like them and make them compelling to others.

About Jesse
*Disclaimer*
I'm currently not taking beginner students on guitar, bass, drums, piano, or ukulele. I highly recommend my studio partners Andrew and Melissa though. Please check out their profiles for the following topics:

Guitar, Bass, Drums, Piano, and Ukulele
https://takelessons.com/profile/andrew-i5

Piano and Ukulele
https://takelessons.com/profile/melissa-m62

My Background

I've been playing with classical ensembles and rock bands since 2001. Even though I started on classical trombone and rock guitar, I have come to expand my repertoire to a variety of instruments and genres. During my time in college I performed with the University choir, orchestra, and band. I also have organized, wrote/arranged for, and performed with a variety of bands in my home state of New Mexico, as well as Japan, and the San Francisco Bay Are
a.

Since 2006 I have been an active teacher. This profession has taken me everywhere from working with classical guitar classes in New Mexico high schools to Elementary students in Japan to a variety of private students of various musical instruments and genres everywhere I've been. Since relocating to the Bay Area in 2010, I've had the pleasure of working with lots of great students from kids to adults with a wide range of ambitions. Since 2012 I've been running my own full time studio along.

Philosophy of Learning

Lessons are generally designed to work towards giving students the tools to accomplish their goals and become increasingly independent over time. While all students will study similar fundamentals regarding technique, theory, and performance, every lesson is as different as every person. What kind of music do you want to make? I'll tell you what you need to do to get there, and help you take the steps to achieve your aspirations.

I also love to help students put together a song, record, and produce it for them so that they can have a recording to share with their friends and family.

I also hold events for my students. (Check out our pictures and videos below!)
Younger students have the "Young Musicians Showcase" every few months where individual students and band classes have a chance to perform and celebrate their accomplishments with friends and family.
Adult students occasionally have events where they get a chance to get together and play music as well.

Aside from in-studio lessons, students also have the option to sign up for online lessons via Skype.
(*Online lessons offered during different times than in-studio lessons.)

*Unfortunately due to scheduling issues, I'm not currently accepting students for bi-weekly lessons. I can do regular weekly lessons, or occasional drop-in lessons, but bi-weekly appointments make it really hard for me to give the best scheduled times to my existing weekly students. I'm sorry for the inconvenience.

My studio is equipped with:

*Multiple Music Stands

*P.A. System

*Vocal and instrument microphones

*Guitars, Basses, and a Banjo

*Two guitar amps and a bass amp

*Various percussion including a fully equipped acoustic drum set

*A Roland V-Drums electronic drum set

*An electric piano console

*A MicroKorg Synthesizer

*A Tuba, Trombone, Cornet, and Flute

*An extensive physical and virtual music library

*A recording system that students are not only welcome to use but encouraged to

*HD Webcam and condenser microphone for high fidelity online lessons via Skype
...
Reviews
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Robert O. August 10, 2017
· Japanese · Online
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Rajeev July 18, 2017
· Trumpet · In studio
After a break of more than a year I wanted to restart my Trumpet lessons. I chose Jesse based on the reviews and Jesse did not disappoint. He is very patient and focused teacher. I liked his structured method and tools he uses. I was able to get back in groove in no time.

Highly recommended.
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BRIAN July 18, 2017
· Japanese · Online
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Jesse M.

Jesse M.

Sunnyvale, CA 94086
(86)
starting at
$35 / 30-min

About Christina A.

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Plainfield, NJ

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Students will learn how to use their vocabulary as well as musical sequences and themes to create songs.

About Christina
My studio is based on the belief that our customers' needs are of the utmost importance. We are committed to meeting those needs. We would welcome the opportunity to earn your trust and deliver you the best service in the industry! With over 14 years of teaching experience in both the classroom and privately, my lessons are comprehensive, diverse and individually tailored to each student.

Ms. Tina was born and raised in North Plainfield, NJ and attended college at Westminster Choir College in Princeton, NJ and Montclair State University in Montclair, NJ where she received a BM in Musical Theater. Music is not just a job for Ms. Tina...it's a passion.

I continually strive to encourage and motivate my students to explore their individual talents and abilities to their fullest and to have fun! I look forward to work with you and
your family to achieve your music education goals!
...
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Nicholas C. February 21, 2017
· Flute · In home
Excellent, great with 4 year old!!!
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Peter W. February 15, 2017
· Saxophone · In home
We became friends, Then as a student I learned a lot and I have a lot to look forward to as I progress with my practicing I cant wait to practice on my own, The teacher was filled with knowledge on the sax I am glad I found Christina and look forward to my next lesson because Christina was easy to work with and no pressure.
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Zsofia December 9, 2016
· Violin · In home
Christina was excellent. She was on prompt nice and interacted nicely with my daughter. I would definitely recommend her.
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Christina A.

Christina A.

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About Daniel P.

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Stony Brook, NY

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Mr. Pate currently offers private lessons in Stony Brook, New York. All levels are currently being accepted.Mr. Pate offers preparation study for the NYSSMA All-State audition in Drum Set, Marimba, Timpani, Percussion, as well as Piano and Composition.

Individual curriculum is determined by an evaluation of the student's experience, ability and goals. Students are encouraged to discover their potential through consistent training, listening to concerts & recordings

About Daniel
Percussionist Daniel is a bustling performer who's work can be seen frequently in New York City and the surrounding areas. He has presented performances at the 48th International Summer Course at Darmstadt, Germany, the Green Umbrella Concert Series held at Walt Disney Hall in Los Angeles.

Daniel is pursuing a Doctorate in Contemporary Music Performance at Stony Brook University, under the tutelage of Eduardo Leandro and is a member of the Contemporary Chamber Players.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Malletech 5.0 Octave Marimba, Yamaha Vibraphone, Pearl Philharmonic concert Snare Drum, Gretch Catalina Drumset, Steinway Grand Piano. Drum, Djembe. Macbook Pro with Logic pro 10 recording software in order to record lessons.

*** Specialties ***
I specialize in concert percussion performance, but I also frequently perform a wide variet
y of drum set styles.
...
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PaulaL February 3, 2011
· ·
Seth is really enjoying his lessons. You're a great instructor. Sorry we missed last Friday's lesson.
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Daniel P.

Daniel P.

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About Trevor H.

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El Cajon, CA
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Learn different tips and tricks for songwriting.

About Trevor
Every musician was first and foremost a fan of music. My love of
music began when my mother took me to a performance of Beethoven's
fifth symphony when, coincidentally, I was five. From that point, I
started fervently listening to my mother's records (those are the
huge, black monstrosities that people in the pre-historic used in
place of iPods), followed closely by my father's CD collection.
After a while, this ravenous desire of to know and feel music moved
me to play an instrument. After a couple of false starts with the
drums and violin, I found my true musical calling: the guitar.

On January 25th 1995, on a whim, I began playing the
guitar, and I have yet to put it down. Along the way I've picked up
a number of friends for my guitar, including the bass, the lute, the
sitar and, once again, the drums. After on
ly a few years of
practice, I started playing professionally, in bands and solo guitar.
Live playing experience, I believe, is the most important experience
that any musician can have, in that, the most important part of music
is how it sounds, and playing in front of people is the quickest way
to learn how to play effectively. And this is what I teach; how to
be a musician, not just a technician.

*** Lesson Details ***
A student can expect a curriculum tailor-made to their needs and personality. Every person learns differently and this is an important distinction in my teaching style. Some students need a strong hand to keep them working, others need to find many different ways to the same conclusion to keep them focused, while still others need a laid-back friend in order to accept knowledge.

I stress rhythmic literacy, for, as my jazz teacher always said, "rhythm is king." If composition is important to you, then we'll focus on music theory, but if you're just wanting to learn how to play some fun rock tunes with your friends on the weekends, we can do that as well. As I stated before, we'll get you playing in front of people in no time.

*** Travel Equipment ***
I provide an amplifier, a loner guitar (if needed), staff and/or tablature paper, metronome, pens and paper for the lessons.

*** Specialties ***
Music theory and composition, guitar, bass, lute, beginner to intermediate piano
Classical, shred, blues, and rock guitar; renaissance lute; blues, rock and slap bass; composition of many styles; world music.
...
Reviews
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Mike M. March 9, 2017
· Guitar · In home
Trevor is great, he has patience for us beginners, explains things well and answers all my questions. The rest is up to me.
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Dan F. March 25, 2016
· Guitar · In home
had a great first lesson
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Cooper W. November 15, 2015
· Drum · In home
Looking forward to the next one!
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Trevor H.

Trevor H.

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$25 / 30-min

About Glenn W.

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Henderson, NV
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Reading the detailed "About" section below should give an aspiring singer/songwriter all the information relevant as to how and what I teach, with regard to vocal performance and technique. I have associated with published songwriters my entire 40 year career, and have gathered viable and pertinent knowledge of the craft that I can now pass along to a new era of writers. We will unpack the secrets of good songwriting, and we will write songs. We have the capabilities in my studio to record and mix your songs as well. I have co-written songs with my students that have been nominated for rewards in Nashville. Look at our sessions as practical, relevant clinics that will produce original musical material that will be heard, as you absorb the knowledge you need to be successful in this genre. To capsulize my mission statement as an instructor: You WILL be a better singer/songwriter and performer. THIS I GUARANTEE!!

About Glenn
I have been active in the entertainment industry since the age of 12, when I gave my first professional performance. Prior to that I was already being introduced to music with years of guitar, and then vocal instruction. I do not remember a time of my life when I was not singing somewhere; in the house, in the yard, in the classroom. That is perhaps why I identify so well with the young people who gather so much enjoyment from "just singing" at every opportunity. I studied professionally for over 10 years with renown soprano and voice teacher Sylvia Jensen, who was instrumental in the enhancement of my vocal knowledge and technique. She is now the Director of Education for the Miss Ohio pageants of the Miss America competitions, elevating many young ladies to the national spotlight. At age 14, I auditioned for, and was added to cast of a
network television variety program, "The Gene Carroll Show", that was a television institution for over 30 years in the Midwest. I was a featured performer on that program for over 7 years, all the while perfecting the art of "playing to a camera." This experience was invaluable, and the knowledge I gathered is now included in my curriculum. I also began performing a solo act in the nightclub circuit at the age of 15, performing up and down the "north coast" from Cleveland, OH, (my home), to Erie. PA. At a very young age, I learned the difficult art of choosing musical material and pacing a show; also adapting to performing under a myriad of conditions with a vast array of musical accompaniment. After graduating college with a degree in Business Administration and Marketing, I assembled my own band, and took to the road. That experience eventually brought the act to Las Vegas in 1982. Over the years my show has been a staple in major casino cabarets in Las Vegas, and all over Nevada. Since my first engagement at The Landmark Hotel in the early 1980's, I have literally been up and down the famed Las Vegas Strip many times over. The Desert Inn, The Dunes, The Stardust, The Maxim, The Tropicana, New York New York, Mandalay Bay, MGM, Bally's, The Flamingo, The Imperial Palace, The Four Queens, The Golden Nugget, The Fremont, The Venetian, The Palazzo, and a three year engagement at The Riviera. My show is truly comprised of musical variety; classics, show tunes, jazz, rock, blues, r&b, country. Even a presentation of "Music of the Night" from Phantom of the Opera, that I perform in full costume. It is this ability to successfully deliver an extensive repertoire that I am enthusiastic about passing along to the next generation of entertainers.

I have been truly blessed in my career to have experienced so many highlights; too many to document. From winning an understudy roll in the Broadway Musical "Platinum" starring Hollywood actress Alexis Smith, to performing our National Anthem at events ranging from Major League Baseball to ESPN Boxing to receptions for major dignitaries, to recording 7 albums and a full-length video, to being asked to perform for Mr. Frank Sinatra at the Frank Sinatra Celebrity Golf Tournament, I have lived a full life on stage, learning and absorbing every bit of knowledge gathered along the way.
Now it is my desire to escalate my status as an educator to a more "one on one" experience; availing myself the opportunity to pass along that wealth of knowledge to individual students who aspire to enjoy the entertainment profession as I have, providing them with the skills needed to successfully compete. Or, should it be their choice not to pursue entertainment as a vocation, to gain a working understanding of all facets of their instrument so as to gain a better appreciation of music. Whatever the goal of the student, I feel that I am equipped to provide them with the tools needed to achieve that goal.

*** Lesson Details ***
Content of Sessions

Generally, the first 10-15 minutes of each lesson will be focused on vocal warm up and exercise. (For guitar students, we will review the previous
week's assignment). For Vocal Students, it is understood that the voice mechanism is made up of muscles, and as an athlete prepares for a sporting event, a singer must prepare to vocalize. It is at this time in our lesson when the student will develop good habits of voice maintenance, which will serve them well throughout their careers. The proper care and preservation of the vocal unit cannot be stressed enough, especially for pubescent and pre-pubescent students. Vocal chords in a developmental stage are most susceptible to damage, and because they are particularly sensitive, they must be handled with care. Our warm up regimen is designed to strengthen as well as preserve the singing voice.

I am not an advocate of getting too involved and "bogged down" in the technical aspects of singing, especially with the young students, and
especially early in our program. This is not to say that breath control, tonality, pitch, etc. are not vital to good singing, because these workings are ESSENTIAL, and their application will certainly be incorporated into our studies. Some instructors, on occasion, have a tendency to lose sight of the fact that much to do with singing happens "naturally", and too much focus on the "technical" can actually be inhibiting. This can alter a beautiful, natural tone into one that is unnatural and contrived.

I adhere to the philosophy that above all else, SINGERS WANT TO SING SONGS, and musicians-in-training want to play music. That is our focus, and all of our training is conceived with that objective in mind. All the technical knowledge and coaching serves no purpose without practical application. It is my belief that the most significant progress occurs when a vocalist is singing a song.

Nearly every element of instruction can be utilized in the performance of one song. This is why the majority of our session time will be spent "in song". For the very young student, we will concentrate our efforts with the students choices of favorite and familiar songs. The older students will undoubtedly have favorite songs, styles and artists. Special attention will be paid to the genre most enjoyed by the student, but diversity will be emphasized as well, and a variety of genres will be unpacked and explored. I believe that whatever a student's musical goals and aspirations, it is in their best interest to gain knowledge and insight in all facets of music, singing, and performance.

The most vital pre-requisite for any student is their enthusiasm. My ambition will be to harness that enthusiasm and channel it productively through stimulating instruction. Our sessions will be informative and educational, but always predicated upon "having fun with music".

I am proud to feature a curriculum that emphasizes the entertainment aspect of singing as well as the technical; created to benefit all ages and experience levels, from beginner to seasoned professional. After just weeks of my "Triple Threat Training" a student will begin to see astounding results: vocally, musically, and in the art of performance. I am excited to share my knowledge with you. Let's get started!

*** Studio Equipment ***
My studio is equipped with a full vocal sound system with microphones that I utilize to teach the valuable art of mic technique. Young students enjoy using the mics and hearing themselves sing and perform. Since our lessons are predicated on enjoying the art of singing, this opportunity has proven invaluable. For the advanced performer, studying all aspects of amplification and what a singer should know about their stage sound is a part of our educational curriculum. My studio is furnished with the equipment that is essential to mastering that knowledge.
Since the practical aspect of my course is based on singing songs, I provide all the latest technology required to allow my students the opportunity to sing the songs of their choosing, with and without the lead vocal tracks. I feel that when students are singing their favorite songs, it offers me the greatest teaching opportunities. I make certain the every musical genre can be represented, and feel I have the knowledge and ability to guide the student is whatever their musical tastes. My studio is also equipped with piano (for vocal exercises), and guitars, which gives me opportunity to accompany my students when the musical moment is appropriate. Be assured that all the technology I need to fulfill the educational needs of my students is but a step away!!
...
Reviews
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George G. August 1, 2017
· Acting · In home
I was very pleased with Glenn and the help he gave myself and two other co-workers on the presentation we have to make this week at our conference. Glenn quickly picked up on what our outcome was and coached us in that direction. Many valuable tips and ideas for input was extremely helpful. Glenn also had a superb sense of humor and we shared plenty of laughs along the way also....highly recommend Glenn!
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Louise R. May 25, 2017
· Music Performance · In studio
Glenn has so much experience as a performer that he offers very practical suggestions!
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Alexandra November 17, 2016
· Acting · In studio
Very nice and friendly first impression
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Glenn W.

Glenn W.

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About Matt B.

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Chicago, IL

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I teach composition in a wide variety of styles. Regardless of whether you want to write songs, write for band/orchestra, etc., I can help you reach your goals.

About Matt
I earned a Bachelor's of Music in Classical Guitar Performance from Capital University in Columbus, OH.

I currently teach private guitar lessons, sing and play guitar in the Chicago rock band Dead Parade, and transcribe music professionally for a wide variety of clients. Occasionally, I write articles or do interviews that appear in magazines such as Guitar World. In the past, I worked for 8 years as a guitar teacher, transcriber, consultant, and free-lance writer for a popular subscription guitar site. I also served as a guitar instructor/lecturer at Capital University's Community Music School under the direction of renowned music educator Dr. Rebecca Johnson. Over the duration of my 18 year teaching career, I have taught over 1000 students of all ages and levels of experience.
...
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Betsy August 17, 2017
· Guitar · In studio
Matt is a very patient and laid back teacher, yet he always has an organized lesson plan each week. He's great with kids too!
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Mark August 17, 2017
· Guitar · In studio
Matt is definitely more knowledgeable in the playing and teaching department compared to other professionals that I've worked with in the past. He also does a good job of picking materials to work on that inspire me to play more
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Terry August 6, 2017
· Acoustic Guitar · In studio
Matt's a very patient and laid back teacher! Can't say enough good things - He's extremely knowledgeable in the area of structured teaching. I've noticed that a lot of great guitarists are often not very good teachers. He's always prepared even when I'm not. lol!
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Matt B.

Matt B.

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$30 / 30-min

About Gary R.

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San Diego, CA

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I started writing in 1977 and have not stopped since. I can teach you to construct a song, create lyric, the context of songwriting, and how to find the chords you hear in your head for your song-
Let me show you how to bring your songs to life!

About Gary
Hello, my name is Gary R. and I am ready to get you started on a musical journey that should last a lifetime. Whether you are just beginning, or have been making music since you were a kid, I can help you. Beginners come in all ages, so don't think you are too old to play or sing. I enjoy teaching students of every age.
I received my Bachelors and Masters degrees from the University of North Texas, a University well known for their music school and famous graduates.
My teaching methods vary from student to student, as we all learn a bit differently. I will often write custom lesson plans for my students, as one book does not fit all. As a teacher, I enjoy a fun, relaxed learning environment designed to help you enjoy the process of becoming the best musician you can be.
I have more than 30 years experience teaching and pl
aying music, and look forward to meeting you. Lets get started and make some music!
You can hear me performing around San Diego at Bourre', Harbor Music Hall, The Amigo Spot, and other venues as a trumpeter/vocalist.
...
Reviews
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Emily and Kitty S. July 15, 2017
· Singing · In studio
gary was very funny and we felt comfortable with him :)
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Marylou D. June 13, 2017
· Piano · In studio
My son took piano and voice lessons with Gary last summer. Gary is fantastic! He is very talented, patient, and kind, He is great at keeping a child's attention and varying the lesson so that the child is not bored. I would definitely recommend Gary for music lessons.
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Shauria May 13, 2017
· Singing · In studio
Gary is so patient with me. I couldn't ask for a better teacher.
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Gary R.

Gary R.

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$33 / 30-min

About Marwan S.

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Mountain View, CA

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I like to call it music theory in reverse. Having a strong foundation in the fundamentals of music and music theory makes the songwriting process much easier.

About Marwan
Born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, I started playing piano at the age of 3, and started writing music at the age of 6.
...
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Cherie June 30, 2017
· Piano · In home
We had a great first lesson. Very relaxed and unassuming. Looking forward to upcoming lessons.
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Ava March 6, 2017
· Piano · In home
Terrific with our small kids. Extremely patient and easy to laugh
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Caleb A. October 20, 2016
· Piano · In home
My boys took to him right away! He has a fantastic balance of high expectations/standards mixed with positive reinforcement. He also differentiated expertly with the 2 boys' ages/capacities. We look forward to continuing our lessons with him!
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Marwan S.

Marwan S.

Mountain View, CA 94043
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Whether you're just starting out or a seasoned pro, check out the Songwriting articles on our blog.

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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 … Read More

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