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Santa Rosa, CA Songwriting Lessons

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Popular Songwriting Teachers near Santa Rosa, CA

Check out some of our most popular teachers near Santa Rosa, CA including Sebastopol, Windsor, Fulton, Graton and Forestville.

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About Amber S.

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Vallejo, CA

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Award nominated singer-songwriter (wife and mom) with over 20 years experience available to teach eager students of all experience levels and ages! I structure my lessons so students learn what they want to learn, while also building a strong foundation of skills, focusing on self-expression and technique. I specialize in pop, folk, rock, blues and country styles. Let's have fun making music!

About Amber
I have been a performing singer-songwriter/graphic artist for 15+ years have written roughly 200 original songs, released several CDs and performed hundreds of shows. Music has been an important part of my life and has given me enormous amounts of joy and growth as an individual. Both of my parents are musicians and I was fortunate to have their support and guidance in addition to formal and informal training from various musicians over the years but mostly, I developed my style of playing from many hours of playing and experimenting. I am excited to have the opportunity to teach others the tools needed to start their own journey in music.

*** Lesson Details ***
I am both easy going and goal oriented. I want my students to get the most out of their lessons and enjoy every minute.

I provide the syllabus & handouts needed initially
but will may assign a book after the first few lessons. Students should have an empty three-ring binder handy or iPad in addition to owning their own guitar or piano/keyboard. I recommend supporting local music stores before going to the big chains. I can help with choosing an instrument if needed.

Within 6 months*, the student should know and be able to play major and minor chords (instruments only), understand basic music notation, time signatures, and be able to follow basic sheet music. Students are encouraged to name songs that they wish to learn to keep them excited and interested in learning.

Emphasis will be on accuracy, performance techniques and having fun!

* results will vary with each student.

*** Travel Equipment ***
Each student needs a guitar or piano/keyboard and a 3 ring binder.

*** Specialties ***
Guitar, Piano, Songwriting: Folk, Rock, Blues & Country.
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JannessaB April 25, 2012
· ·
Great Teacher

Amber was great with my son. She was very pleasant, professional and on time. Very good teacher!
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Amber S.

Amber S.

Vallejo, CA 94589
(1)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

About James P.

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Petaluma, CA
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I'm an award winning, published songwriter and I have a passion for songwriting and I love to help people with their songs. I can help you shape that music that lives inside you and is longing to get out.

About James
I've played keyboards and sang professionally for the last 25 years. During that time my home has been in the San Francisco Bay Area but I have performed all over the country and have toured several times in Germany, Switzerland, and Japan. I’m a two time winner of the West Coast Songwriters “Song Of The Year Award” and I write music and lyrics as well as record and produce songs for myself and others.

Over those years I've developed a wealth of knowledge and experience that I’m very excited to share with my students. I want you to tell me what your musical dreams are and we will develop a plan to reach them and I will be honored to guide you there.

*** Lesson Details ***
I see music lessons as a partnership between the instructor and the student. I like to start this partnership by helping each student clarify their goals. Then
we can proceed to plan our path to the stated goals. This plan will of necessity be unique to each student.

Obviously, expectations for the lessons would depend on the student’s starting point but I would say that for a child piano student who is just beginning, it would be reasonable to expect that within 3-6 months they would be able to play songs by reading the music. These would include some songs of their own choosing as well as some that I might recommend. For adult piano students, although reading is highly encouraged, our goals might take us in a different direction.

For songwriting students, we might choose to forego working at the piano entirely and instead take our lessons into my recording studio. It all depends on our goals and the path that we choose to get there. We might spend an entire lesson on lyrics. But I really like to see a student leave each lesson with some concrete progress on their song, and preferably with it documented on a recording. Depending on the level of the student, after 3-6 months I anticipate that we would have at least a few songs written and demoed.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Music Room: 2 vertical pianos

*** Travel Equipment ***
I expect the student to provide a piano or appropriate keyboard in a well lit room. I would also expect a bench and music stand.
I could provide a digital recorder and a metronome.

*** Specialties ***
blues, jazz, pop and rock
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Reviews
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Michele L. November 7, 2016
· Piano · In studio
I came away from my lesson with James feeling so happy and knowing that he will be teaching and encouraging me all the way going forward. I am actually lost for words to express what an incredibly positive experience I had today. I am also looking forward to my grand daughter taking lessons from James now too. I feel I got lucky that James is the teacher that was found for me.
MIchele
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Marcus C. July 16, 2015
· Piano · In studio
First lesson for my grandson and James was excellent, looking forward to future lessons.
Thanks James.
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Mike W. March 24, 2015
· Piano · In studio
James is a great teacher. Patient and inspiring. I have just begun my late in life music learning experience and he is perfect for that.
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James P.

James P.

Petaluma, CA 94952
(8)
starting at
$39 / 30-min

About Lars R.

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Petaluma, CA
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What is a song to you? My historical knowledge of the musical medium known as song is well developed, and it would be a pleasure to share it with you. Let's explore different forms, linguistic effects, accompaniments . . . the song is a small form, but very potent!

About Lars
I began to teach guitar at 16 years of age. I have taught students from 7 to 60 years old in a wide variety of styles. From age 12 to 21 I took private guitar lessons regularly. Now I have a lesson every once in a while. I studied jazz guitar primarily with Randy Vincent, one of the San Francisco Bay Area's greatest guitar players. Aside from teaching lessons as a job, I have played guitar in many concerts and continue to do so. Before moving to San Francisco, I gained a lot of experience and valuable education with guitar. I played in the jazz bands in Junior High and High School. I went to four years of a week long summer jazz camp called jazz camp west where I took classes, played open mics and had fun with many musicians, making some good friends. I hold BA degrees in Music (Jazz Guitar) and Spanish, as well as an MA in Musi
c, from San Francisco State University. By now, I am confident in working with whatever musical material students offer! Thank you.

*** Lesson Details ***
I am a laid back teacher, but I definitely expect students to practice what I suggest they practice. I advise that students use method books or sheet music of some sort, and I will certainly make notes for them and create materials they can learn from. I always teach based on the goals of the student and what type of music they enjoy, but I also like to guide the student in a direction I think would benefit them. I usually introduce music to play right away, conforming of course to the skill level and interest of the student. I now play seven-string guitar, which is just a six-string guitar (same tuning and technique) with an extra low string. It will be practical to aide students by accompanying with a bass range instrument.

*** Specialties ***
Guitar
I consider myself a Jazz musician, but I am happy to consider a very wide range of styles. I am focusing now on music of the Spanish Golden Age, 1500-1700.
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Jackson July 29, 2017
· Guitar · In home
Lars came to the session on time, and was very patient with my son. He took the time to listen and gave helpful tips on becoming a better player. I would recommend him!
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Ava April 18, 2017
· Acoustic Guitar · In home
Wonderful guy who gives a well rounded lesson!
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Peter M. March 30, 2017
· Guitar · In studio
Excellent class and a good teacher.
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Lars R.

Lars R.

Petaluma, CA 94952
(4)
starting at
$20 / 30-min

About Alan B.

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Nashville, TN
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I have been working as a professional musician since 1987. In that time, I've played many roles alongside a wide range of established and emerging talent, from around the world, including band leader, accompanist, music producer, composer, arranger, co-writer, teacher, coach and mentor. Along the way, I have continued to pursue my passion for education, teaching private music lessons to amateurs, professionals and hobbyists from all walks of life.

As a professional composer/songwriter, I have written songs in a variety of styles, across multiple genres, alone and with others, and enjoyed over one hundred (100) cuts including single and music video releases on recording projects with a very wide range of emerging and established artists and bands. To date, as a writer and/or publisher, I have scored thirty-one (31) syncs on national television.

About Alan
Beginner, intermediate and advanced are all welcome. I give the same attention to teaching amateurs as I do professionals.
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Elisa July 31, 2016
· Guitar · In studio
relaxed, progress, professional... perfect
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Rudy April 21, 2016
· Guitar · In studio
A true professional in every sense of the word!
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Kim B. August 29, 2014
· Guitar · In studio
WOW - you guys read my mind so let me start with saying my teacher Alan is TERRIFIC - and I do mean TERRIFIC - when I first met him I felt so comfortable - his way of teaching is very patient and informative. Alan has a method of teaching that allows you to absorb valuable information while learning a skill. He makes the lessons simple and fun. Alan gives you the opportunity to learn at your own pace and that's wonderful for mature students that wish to learn something new. If I could - I would let everyone know that there is a chance to experience your musical dream - Just take a chance as a matter of fact take a Lesson.
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Alan B.

Alan B.

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$35 / 30-min

About Fernando T.

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Fort Wayne, IN

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As a professional songwriter and producer I have recorded over 5 albums or original material, and have recorded original music for brands and channels such as Old Spice, UPS, Proctor and Gamble, VH1, E! and the Oxygen Network but what I enjoy most is helping students develop their artistry ... no matter where they are at on the journey.

Please message me any questions you may have. I look forward to hearing from you.

About Fernando
I am a professional vocalist who regularly performs with orchestras, rock bands, jazz bands and as a singer/songwriter. I teach beginners to professional touring artists and can break down the seemingly complex vocal techniques in simple to understand concepts and exercises. My focus areas are breath, placement and freedom from tension in order to increase your efficiency, stamina and flexibility between registers and musicality. (See my online tutorials for a quick idea of what it might be like to work with me)

I have a degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Michigan and have worked professionally from Opera to Pop. I started my professional music career at the age of 10, traveling the world with the American Boychoir School in Princeton, NJ. I moved to the San Francisco Bay Area where I worked as an instructor and vocal
coach for the Grammy Award Winning Pacific Boychoir. I also sang professionally for ensembles such as the San Francisco Symphony Chorus, Clerestory, American Bach Soloists and San Francisco Pocket Opera.

I am currently a vocal instructor for Sweetwater Music Academy, music director for the Jesters (a theatre ensemble for people with developmental disabilities) and I sing for hospital patients as a Parkview Healing Artist. I have taught grade levels K-8 in private schools so I am accustomed to all age levels.

As a songwriter I have composed and performed music for MTV, VHI, E! and the Oxygen Network, and have acted on commercials for Southern Comfort, Old Spice, & Anthem Blue Cross.

I am also the songwriter and front man for the original regional RootsRock band, Fernando T. & The Wickersham Bros and have established myself as a teaching artist for young audiences through the Carnegie Hall Link Up Concert Series.

I look forward any questions you may have and hope to help you or your child find creative fulfillment from the most unique instrument in the world- your voice!

[PLEASE NOTE: I will be teaching exclusively online from June-December 2017 period and am happy to squeeze in as many in in location lessons you would like before then]
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Christian June 1, 2017
· Singing · Online
Fernando's lessons are very helpful. I have improved my singing technique within my first five lessons. He teaches based on the individual versus a cookie cutter method. I would recommend Fernanado, especially for beginners.
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Em Gee April 26, 2017
· Singing · In studio
I'm so glad we signed up for singing lessons! Fernando is a natural teacher for all ages. Don't hesitate to consult!

My 6 year old granddaughter, Avery, had so much fun (learning) about octaves, counting beats, singing and she accompanied Fernando with ease!
Thanks Fernando!
P.s. I was ready to join in too!
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Taras January 11, 2017
· Songwriting · In studio
Fernando is a true talent and an asset to the community of Fort Wayne, Indiana. My first experience with him was 7 years ago at St. Henry Community Center. Fernando sang and played guitar during our Christmas recital. I was completely amazed with his vocal range and ability to captivate an audience with his overall musical aura. Fernando also taught vocal lessons for St. Henry and continued to contribute his ideas and talents to enhance the community center. We were blessed to have him as a part of our staff. He is, without a doubt, the best vocal coach that one could ask for. If you are looking to make singing a goal of yours in 2017, do yourself a favor and sign up for lessons with Fernando.
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Fernando T.

Fernando T.

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About Dan S.

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Montclair, NJ
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Dan S holds a diploma in Modern Guitar Performance from La Musique Academy International and a Bachelors of Music in Guitar Performance and Jazz from Montclair State University. Dan Has been teaching since 2008 and brings both structure and a fully customizable approach to teaching, making sure you learn what you want and what you need to know to accomplish any musical dream. Dan has extensive experience working with children and teens as well as adults.

About Dan
Dan S. holds a diploma in Modern Guitar Performance from La Musique Academy International and a Bachelors of Music in Guitar Performance and Jazz from Montclair State University. Dan Has been teaching since 2008 and brings both structure and a fully customizable approach to teaching, making sure you learn what you want and what you need to know to accomplish any musical dream. He has extensive experience working with children.

At age 9 Dan began studying such instruments as the viola, saxophone, piano and guitar. By the age 12 he identified more with the guitar and chose it as his primary instrument of musical expression. Dan is currently playing venues in and around NYC and the metropolitan area, jamming with some of the best live musicians around. He has also performed in France and looks forward to tour more of Europe.

His musica
l influences range from The Blues, Pop, RnB, Rock and EDM. This range of music continues to influence his writing and vocal styling developing a sound that is truly unique.
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Patrick F. August 9, 2016
· Guitar · In home
I've taken guitar lessons from a few teachers and Dan is the best fit I've ever had. He is very patient and does a fantastic job of tailoring lessons to individual needs. He clearly loves to play music and is very thoughtful about how he shares this knowledge in his lessons. He never fails to encourage me as a guitar player and reinforces a 'can do' attitude. His positive and calm demeanor also make for a fantastic instructor. Thank you, Dan.
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Patrick F. July 13, 2016
· Guitar · In home
Dan is a patient instructor who is always encouraging. He also makes the lessons fun. I appreciate how he customizes each lesson for my needs.
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Maria B. May 3, 2016
· Guitar · In home
First lesson was a great experience for my kids. They are practicing on their own!!! I could tell they couldn't wait for their next lesson. Thank you Dan!!!
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Dan S.

Dan S.

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$40 / 30-min

About Stan M.

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Coventry, RI

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I hold a B.M. degree in Composition from Berklee College of Music. I have also composed nearly a thousand songs -- in many genres and group settings -- in my lifetime and I have decades of experience teaching composition and arranging to many, many songwriters from all styles and levels. With my education and experience, I can help you create your best work and have fund doing it.

About Stan
Hi! I am a private music instructor offering lessons both in-studio and online. I hold a Bachelor of Music degree from Berklee College of Music (Summa cum Laude) and I have over 35 years' full-time experience as an instructor. I also have nearly four decades of experience as a professional jazz, rock, and theater musician. My experience has taken me from nightclubs to concert stages, as well as television, radio, and recording studios. Finally, I am a published author with several titles dedicated to helping musicians becoming the best they can be.

**** MY TEACHING STYLE ****

My teaching style is often referred to as laid-back, gentle, informative, and very supportive. My focus is on enrichment, encouragement, and results. I don't work with “one-size-fits-all” methods. Each lesson is customized to make the most of each student's own
unique abilities, limitations, preferences, and interests. Whether students prefer, or do better, with traditional materials, playing/singing along with their favorite recordings, improvisation, or anything in between, I am more than happy to accommodate and bring out each student’s best!

I teach real music -- students begin playing music they love almost from day-one. For example, many of my piano and guitar students pride themselves on learning to play every song on Beatles One ... playing right along with the CD! Reading, playing by ear, improvisation (jamming), singing while you play ... there are so many ways to play and avenues to explore in music.

**** MY STUDIO ****

My studio is spacious (very spacious – no cubicles here!), well-appointed, and very quiet. Unlike music stores and multi-lesson facilities, there are no other lessons on the premises, no drummer going crazy on the other side of the wall. This means students can concentrate better and learn faster. There is also plenty of room for parents and siblings who may wish to sit in on lessons.

**** STYLES / GENRES ****

I believe that students make the most progress learning music they love and I am very happy to teach every student the style of music he or she loves most.

My most requested genres are: pop, rock, country, blues, film/television, classic rock, jazz, and classical. Some students arrive knowing exactly what they want, but most are happy to explore various styles that interest them in search of the perfect fit. It is not at all uncommon for a student to spend part of their lesson polishing up a Beethoven piece or jazz standard, then finish up playing the chords to “Hotel California” along with the CD. Another student might start off their lesson learning a Taylor Swift hit, then move over to doing some blues improvisation. Variety is a wonderful thing and it is highly encouraged.

**** MY STUDENTS ****

Over the years, I have taught students from four years old to eighty-somethings. I’ve taught absolute beginners (most of my students start from square-one), hobbyists, seasoned professionals, even a Grammy nominee and a Grammy winner! Many of my young students have gone on to perform in school bands / jazz bands and/or professionally. In all cases, they acquire a skill that will last for a lifetime and provide joy, enrichment, and satisfaction.

Do you have a song or two in your heart. Contact me today and I will help you reach your musical goals no matter what they may be!
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Cullen June 1, 2017
· Blues Guitar · In studio
Stan is obviously both knowledgeable and talented but he is also a very good teacher and will tailor your lessons not only to your ability but also to your own personal goals

Stan has my highest recommendation
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Madison M. October 15, 2016
· Singing · In studio
Made my daughter feel completely at ease. Stan is extremely knowledgeable
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Willow August 30, 2016
· Piano · In studio
We had a great piano lesson today!!Stan was great with my daughter, she loved the class. Can't wait until next week!!
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Stan M.

Stan M.

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$45 / 30-min

About derik T.

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Nashville, TN

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Winner of Earthday Networks 2010 National Songwriting Competition and over 7 years of experience. If you are looking for songwriting coaching or consulting I am here to help!

https://soundcloud.com/derikthomas/sets/changes-ep

About derik
Providing quality musical instruction since 2012, my passion is to provide students with an overall musical experience based on traditional teaching methods combined with instruction personalized to each student. Extending beyond just piano lessons, my goal is to provide students with an education that spans across the music spectrum including instruction in theory, composition, and history. Whether you are looking for lessons for your child, college tutoring, or have developed an interest in music lessons later in life, I have something to offer you.
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derik T.

derik T.

Online
starting at
$20 / 30-min

About Chris R.

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Fort Wayne, IN

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I am both composer of contemporary classical music and a professional jazz pianist. I know the European Art music tradition, its theory and notation intimately. But my native language is the blues and all forms of living American music. In addition to my classical pieces, I've written many jazz compositions. I spent a lot of time in the recording studio, and am an experienced recording engineer. All these skills enable me to very effectively teach all aspects of songwriting, from the study of harmony to the development of basic ideas, and overall arrangement. We can a creative approach, or look at existing tunes and see why they work so well. I am deeply experienced in the Great American songbook and what also music of the Beatles, Joni Mitchell, Carole King, Motown, and on and on.

About Chris
My first musical language is jazz and the blues, which means I feel all American music, as the blues defines all of our music. I learned my craft from masters such as Marcus Belgrave in my hometown of Detroit, where I played in many Montreux-Detroit Jazz Festivals and toured with the Motown legends, The Temptations. I was always a composer, and that drive dominated the next stage of my career as a classical composer. I acquired a Doctor of Music degree from Indiana University and my works have been performed all over the world. I have just finished a commission for ten saxophone quartets, with premiers all over the nation to start in November, 2017. That much said, I have a deep respect for all forms of music, from Mozart to Miles Davis to John Mayer to Aretha Franklin. All are equally profound! And equally enjoyable!

I spent many
years as college professor, where I taught classical composition, jazz piano, recording, film scoring and recording arts. Since leaving that world, I have been very happily and deeply engaged in gigging, teaching and writing the music that comes from deep in my soul and which expresses all my influences.

My approach to teaching also reflects all my skills, and starts with what you want to do with your music. If you want to develop your songwriting skills, we approach from any angle-harmony, development of basic ideas, or seeing what makes a Beatles or Beyonce tune work. If you want to develop your soloing chops, we can look at the deep traditions of jazz and blues. If you're an improvising player who wants to understand theory or develop your reading, I've got strong qualifications there. If you're a beginner, that's cool too! If you have a passion, then everything else follows with an experienced teacher. Bottom line-if you have an idea of where you want to go with your music, I probably have the experience to help you get there, no matter what the style!

I teach from my home studio, where I have a beautiful grand piano and many keyboards. I usually play bass with my students. I can provide customized backing tracks for you to practice with. I also teach on line. I can provide many testimonials from world-class professionals and former students who are now making a big splash.
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Eric June 18, 2017
· Piano · In studio
For Classical Piano, basic technique, Jazz Piano technique, and Jazz Theory you won't find a more competent, caring and deeply motivated piano teacher in the area. I know Chris primarily as a highly skilled, erudite Jazz Piano player, who is always willing to share his knowledge. Chris is well versed in many styles of play and can help you achieve your goals where-ever you may be at. As a jazz piano player/teacher myself, I would have no qualms about sending my students his way for new ideas, second opinions, etc. I recommend him.
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Fernando T. June 16, 2017
· Songwriting · In studio
I am a TakeLessons instructor and I took composition lessons with Chris. I thought compositions lessons would make me a better songwriter and producer, but instead Chris taught me that I was a composer first. What I learned not only expanded my knowledge of the fundamentals of music theory but learned how to use my ear and trust my musical choices. I highly recommend Christ. He entirely a new expectation in myself as a musician.
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Taylor June 16, 2017
· Songwriting · In home
In every lesson I would learn something new and take a new concept home to work through. Chris has an expansive knowledge perfect for shaping my interests in songwriting techniques and various piano styles.
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Chris R.

Chris R.

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$29 / 30-min

About Carson R.

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Alameda, CA
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Musicality and Groove are #1 here! I can give you mentoring on your songwriting skills, with the rigor and knowledge of Classical Training, and a down to earth caring of your musical growth and style. We will learn all there is to know about songwriting and composing: harmony, structure, style, vivid lyrics, arrangement, instrumentation, development, chords, melody, technique, tips and tricks, etc. Classic songs, new songs, classical and jazz music, and experimental music will be examined to push your abilities further and to prepare you for any writing style, and most importantly creating songs that stick out and stick in the ear. Ear training, theory, scales and arpeggios are critical to each lesson plan, and will help develop your musicality as an overall musician and creative thinking tank as a songwriter. I believe students learn the best through, ultimately, PLAYING! So we will be studying the favorite tunes of yours and mine, along with end of lesson jams! I can offer ...

About Carson
Recent USC Music Grad available for bass lessons and more. Having been a student most of my life, I've experienced what makes a teacher and lesson plan great, or stale. Ready to extend my knowledge to students who are thrilled by music and the bass, and ready for the next step in their creative life. Over the years I have studied with many great bass instructors such as:
*Alphonso Johnson- Weather Report, Bob Weir(Grateful Dead) and
Santana
*Ray Riendeau - Rob Halford(Judas Priest), James Labrie(Dream
Theatre), and Solo Slap Bass Master!
*Barry Olson - Retired Principal Bassist of the Phoenix Symphony

In addition, I also studied Classical Composition, Counterpoint, Theory, and Arranging extensively with:

*Neal Desby- Composer, Film+Video GameScore Arranger (
Guardians of the Galaxy, Call of Duty Black Ops 2 and 3), and also teaches Flea, Frank Ocean, Weezer, Maroon 5, and Fall Out Boy.

*Veronika Krausas - Composer, teacher at USC, Lecturer for the LA Philharmonic
...
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Carson R.

Carson R.

Online
starting at
$30 / 30-min

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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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Every songwriter runs into writers' block at some point in their career. To help you dig your way out of the dreaded doldrums of songwriters' block, we put together 25 songwriting tips and prompts plus great songs to inspire you. Check out these songwriting tips and find your muse today!   Bonus: Take the quiz to find out what you should write your next song about! Write about your day. Think your life is boring and you have nothing to say? Check out the lyrics to thi
How To Write a Song Today: 4 Easy Steps
Learning how to write a song is easier than you think! Greeley, CO teacher Andy W. outlines the steps here...  Don’t you wish you could write a song that tells your own story - whether it’s about love, hardships, or finding humor in life? There’s no reason that you can’t do that today! To help get you started, here are four easy steps to writing your own song: 1. Play chords or a riff. 2. Sing or hum over the harmony. 3. Repeat steps 1-2 to form a chorus and then a bridge. 4. Place
Are You Really Ready To Record Your Song Or Book A Vocal Session?
Think you're ready to write your own song and record it? Songwriting can be an arduous process - but seeing the final product is an amazing feeling. Read on for a helpful pre-recording checklist from Perth Amboy, NJ teacher Jeff S...   Whether you're singing your own song or hiring a vocalist to sing on your demo or master, there are many layers of preparation needed to ensure optimum results. Some songwriters like to wing it and hope that things will magically work out because th

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