Chuck recently moved to Portland, Oregon from Gainesville, Florida, where he was a staple of the music teaching and performing community for more than 25 years. Originally from Chicago, Chuck completed his BA in Music History and Masters of Music (MM) at the University of Florida. Chuck became obsessed with The Beatles when he began piano lessons at age 12. His first attempt at composing was actually improvising melodies over the ending chords to "Hey Jude". Along with playing Beatles tunes Chuck learned classic standards from a set of Reader's Digest Songbooks inherited from his grandmot
Chuck has performed with classic rock, top 40, funk, R&B, and jazz groups, and has served as an opening act for Bela Fleck and the Flecktones, and legendary Texas bluesman Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown. As a soloist he's played classical music, blues, jazz, and original compositions. Before devoting himself to music full time, he worked for 8 years as a radio announcer on WUFT-FM Gainesville hosting shows such as "Nothing but the Blues", "Montage" (acoustic jazz), and "Musica Antiqua" (Renaissance and Medieval).
Chuck has taught students of all ages and skill levels in piano, guitar, organ, flute, digital keyboards, recorder, and ukulele. He's also a multi-faceted composer whose instrumental pieces are infused with elements of classical, blues, and jazz styles.
Chuck's teaching philosophy: "In my 25 years of teaching I’ve found that everyone learns in different ways and at different rates of progress, so each of my students is treated as a unique individual. I try to get to know my students in the first few lessons so I can be more sensitive to their personalities. This helps me choose the best teaching approach for them. From the very first lesson I create a relaxed setting so students feel no apprehension, especially when trying something new. This allows them to feel free to take chances and experience playing music as something enjoyable, not a life or death situation! The biggest measure of my effectiveness as a teacher is when my students embrace new challenges and the opportunity to improve".
*** Lesson Details *** My primary goal as a teacher is to present musical material in a way that keeps students excited about what they are learning. Even with absolute beginners, I will have a student playing actual songs that they are interested in as quickly as possible. Along with way I include fundamentals such as scales, strength-building exercises, rudiments of theory, and ear training. Some of the method books I use include the Alfred and Faber and Faber series, and Hanon's The Virtuoso Pianist, among many others. These materials are always supplemented with arrangements and transcriptions of popular songs and classical pieces, along with original exercises designed to teach specific styles and techniques. I also use interactive music websites to introduce students to concepts of music theory. The styles that I cover include classical, rock, jazz, and blues. As students progress in their creativity, I also introduce them to composition and improvisation.
*** Studio Equipment *** Kawai K50 upright piano, music playback devices, Hammond C3 organ, multiple keyboards/synthesizers, acoustic and electric guitars, amplifiers, computer recording equipment; parents are encouraged to sit in on lessons.
*** Travel Equipment *** I don't provide any specific equipment. Piano students should have either a well-tuned piano or full-sized weighted-key digital keyboard (Casio Privia, for example). Guitar students should have a well set up electric or acoustic guitar and an amplifier (for an electric guitar).
*** Specialties *** I teach students of all ages and skill levels. The styles that I cover include classical, rock, jazz, and blues. I also teacher recording techniques using computer software including Ableton Live, Reason, and Pro Tools.
JIA Z. February 12, 2014
Piano Verified Student
Mr. Michaelson is the best teacher I've met at Portland.
I do appreciate Chuck for his professional piano lessons and kind. My son enjoyed his lessons sooooooo much and, loves piano more from then on. He is really a great musician and responsible teacher I've ever met at Portland. His patience and style of teaching are sunshine to my son's piano life.
lulu M. November 5, 2013
Ukulele Verified Student
Great music teacher!
I've been taking ukulele lessons with Chuck for over a year now. I am always impressed with his musical knowledge and appreciate the way he goes beyond the songs and also teachers me musical notation, chord progressions, and more. My lessons are always fun, with just the right amount of challenge to keep my skill development moving forward. Thanks, Chuck!
Heather B. April 29, 2013
Guitar Verified Student
My teen has been taking lessons from Chuck for many months and has learned a lot from him. He is knowledgeable and skilled in guitar, always on time and willing to be understanding with our schedule conflicts. His studio is very attractive and professional, very comfortable and nice location. He is patient and obviously enjoys what he does! thanks Chuck!
I studied classical guitar at the University of Wyoming while still in high school and can assist you in learning to read music, develop proper playing technique and learn a variety songs from the classical repertoire.
I knew I wanted to be a professional guitar player from the first time I picked up an electric guitar over 14 years ago. I started taking private lessons as soon as I got my first guitar, and without the crucial guidance and encouragement I received early on I certainly would not be the guitarist I am today, and that old guitar might even be collecting dust in a closet somewhere. Since I began teaching 8 years ago my goal has been to provide that same encouragement to beginning students and to help them realize that no matter what their ambitions are, they can be achieved with enough practice
and they can have fun along the way!
When I started high school I realized there was a lot more to playing guitar than the hard rock and blues songs I had been learning up until then, so I enrolled in a music theory class, joined my school's jazz band and began taking classical guitar lessons at the University of Wyoming. After high school I accepted academic and music scholarships to attend the University of Oregon where I majored in Jazz Studies, and I graduated in 2009 with a Bachelor of Music degree with an emphasis on jazz arranging. While at UO I performed in student combos and my own rock band Just People as well as the award winning Oregon Jazz Ensemble. I also had the opportunity to perform with the Eugene Symphony Orchestra and play several shows with Grammy-Award winning country artist Lynn Anderson.
This diverse experience allows me to help my students improve their technique and gain a deeper understanding of the guitar, regardless of the style(s) of music they are passionate about. I firmly believe that anyone can learn to play guitar and that lessons should be fun, whether your goal is to be able to sing your favorite song and strum a few chords or start your own band and take over the world!
*** Lesson Details *** I believe that lessons are most effective when they relate to your life and the music you love. I've talked to countless people who have told me "I used to play violin..." or "I played piano when I was younger...", and every time I ask them why they stopped I get a variation on the same answer: "I just didn't feel like practicing." My goal is for every student to look forward to their practice time, and to prevent it from falling into the 'chores' category next to taking out the trash and washing the dishes.
In order to make learning fun we'll start by learning songs that are meaningful to YOU. After becoming familiar with the basics like chords and strumming patterns, we'll dig a little deeper and look at the structure of the song and the fundamentals of music theory that went into composing it. After learning a few songs this way you'll gain not just a larger vocabulary of chords and rhythms, but also the tools to start writing your own music. From there we can develop a more concrete lesson plan based on your individual goals as a musician, whether you're interested in songwriting, improvising, advanced techniques or music theory.
In addition to practicing the material covered in each week's lesson I'll often give students small homework assignments, which can range from finding a musical example of a topic we're learning to writing their own chord progressions. I'm very relaxed and easy-going, but I expect students to come to each lesson prepared to work on new material after a quick review of the previous week's lesson.
After a few months of lessons each student will be able to comfortably play several songs from beginning to end, play basic major and minor scales, discuss the basic structural elements of songwriting (verse, chorus, etc) and tell all of their friends how much fun they're having learning to play guitar!
*** Studio Equipment *** Dedicated teaching studio w/ guitars and amps. There is no waiting area for parents but they are welcome to sit in on lessons. Lots of street parking.
*** Travel Equipment *** I provide a laptop, lesson-related handouts and staff paper. I expect the student to have their own instrument and basic equipment (picks, spare strings, etc)
*** Specialties *** My college degree is in Jazz Studies with an emphasis on arranging, I specialize in teaching jazz guitar as well as classic rock, hard rock, fingerstyle acoustic and blues.
Kelley G. August 4, 2014
In studio Verified Student
I have taken guitar lessons from Peter for a year and a half now, and I wholeheartedly recommend him to any child - or adult, like me - for the highest quality music lessons!
When I researched the TakeLessons website (and others), I looked for an instructor with a strong music background and saw that Peter had a degree in Jazz Studies and Composition from University of Oregon. He has been teaching for a number of years now, and can teach any style of music, including classical. He incorporates music theory into each lesson - very important if you want to learn how to play, improvise or write music. For those students who want to perform, Peter has lots of experience in that arena too, regularly touring with his band and teaming up with other musicians as well.
Peter's an enthusiastic teacher who takes his lessons seriously, and it is absolutely evident how much he loves music. He's exceedingly patient and supportive, and always gives plenty of positive feedback. He taught me how to practice properly, which doesn't mean playing a piece over and over, but rather breaking it down into sections - or even a measure or two - in order to perfect an awkward chord change or erratic rhythm. But perhaps most important is that he doesn't rush through the lesson; he makes certain you understand a technical point, or makes sure you're able to play a finger exercise correctly before he moves on to the next thing.
I've had numerous music instructors over the years in elementary, high school, college and beyond and Peter is without question one of the best teachers I've ever had. He's an incredible musician and a superb instructor. And a pretty terrific human being as well!
david G. February 18, 2013
Guitar Verified Student
Peter's a good teacher, smiling in the face of terrible, broken chords! The lessons are really enjoyable. Peter picks a suitable selection of music where each new piece builds on the past progress. I would recommend him to anyone.
I've studied music at Portland State University, and am well dug into the Portland music scene. I teach you how to turn basic chords and strumming patterns into your own musical ideas, as well as learning your favorite songs. I have experience teaching students how to play most any song in front of family and friends, or with others. Students will get real music theory training as well as advanced guitar techniques. I usually teach students to sing and play the songs in order to help students work on melody and chord structure at the same time.
*** Lesson Details *** I'm pretty laid back,
but I definitely know the value of hard work. We just keep working it until we get it right. We work until we're happy with it. We use handouts as well as books tailored to your learning style.
*** Travel Equipment *** instrument, notebook, somewhat quiet and clean place
*** Specialties *** All singer /songwriter tools taught. From practicing, to writing, to performance..
EdwinM June 29, 2012
Learning to play guitar has been fun
Dave is teaching me to play guitar at quick pace without making the process overwhelming. He is very patient and positive. Never thought I would be playing and singing in only a couple weeks.
ReneeM February 13, 2011
mother of student
david is great! we really like his style of teaching, savannah enjoys class with him. He's very encouraging and knowledgeable.. great instructor!
LeeB January 20, 2011
Good instructor overall, patient, however didn't suit the style I'm attempting to learn and was disappointed this wasn't mentioned prior to my first lesson.
I am 38 years old, and have been a musician for over 25 years. I began, like many, playing in my middle school band. I attended a Performing Arts School throughout my high school years, where I studied Classical and Jazz Guitar, Music Theory, Ear Training, and many other facets of music. I also studied privately with various guitar instructors, most notable Kyle Hildenbrand, a Berklee grad and film scorer for Universal Studios. In college I also took education and psychology classes which have proven very helpful in my approach to teaching. I have performed in many ensembles and bands, playin
g both cover songs and writing original music. Blues, country, hard-rock, and even a jazz quartet. Currently I write for and perform in a folk - rock trio. Playing in so many different circumstances, has been very beneficial working as a teacher. My students are all very different, not only in the way that they learn but also in the style of music they wish to play. I take pride in being able to adapt to each student, teaching them with the most appropriate method.
*** Lesson Details *** In my lessons, I like to teach the fundamentals of music through the style that the student is most interested in. We learn to read standard notation as well as tablature, for guitarists. My curriculum varies from student to student, choosing the most appropriate for the individual. I also emphasize the importance of creativity and self-expression, teaching students how to write and improvise. After 6 months, a student can expect to be able to read music and tablature, know a wide variety of chords and scales, have the ability to improvise solos, and be able to play songs they enjoy to listen to.
*** Studio Equipment **
*** Travel Equipment *** I would provide my instrument, tuner, books, and would expect the student to have their own instrument, a quiet place to have the lesson, and the material we are studying.
*** Specialties *** I generally begin guitar students with the Hal Leonard books, and continue based on the students personal goals and interests.
Laura G. February 5, 2015
In home Verified Student
Chad is very patient and complementary during lessons!
Rudy Y. January 29, 2013 Verified Student
Patient and adaptable
I have only taken three lessons so far but I am excited about what I am learning and will continue taking more. I've been playing guitar for about 11 years and it feels good to finally be learning the things I failed to teach myself.
Chad is very patient and is willing to modify the lessons to focus on what's important to you as a student. The sessions are engaging and practical.
Beginner guitar is one of my favorite instruments to teach and learn! I can supply the guitar if need be! My approach is to create a fun environment where the instrument can be explored using some of the students favorite songs. We will learn easy ways to play music, like tabs, as well as traditional theory.
Nicole received her training at Portland State in 2014 where she received a degree in music education. There, she learned the basics of many different instruments, sang in choir, focused on classical voice, developed classroom management, and trained in the Kolday method. Nicole's teaching style is compassionate, energetic, and fun. She believes that all children and adults have the capacity to play instruments, dance, move, and sing with the natural abilities that are inside all of us. Nicole brings this mentality into her lessons by adapting to the individual. Whether they learn aurally,
kinesthetically, visually, or other, she will personalize her teaching methods to better reach the students. Her main objective is to foster an environment that promotes a life long love and appreciation for music. Currently, Nicole has many private students, teaches adult classes, as well as kindergarten at a daycare facility. Voice,choir, piano, and beginning guitar are her preferred lesson.
Therese Y. March 16, 2015
In home Verified Student
My first lesson with Nicole was amazing. She is amazing! I am excited and can't wait to our next sessions together. I learned so much in one lesson. She is a talented teacher. So glad I found her. Yea, Nicole!!
Joy G. March 2, 2015
In home Verified Student
Nicole provides singing lessons for my daughter who can tend to be bashful at times. Nicole works with her with lots of patience and give her the confidence she needs to really enjoy her lessons.
Students are raving about their Classical Guitar instructors on TakeLessons.
Check out some of these recent reviews.
Review by Mike
"Great teacher. Quickly corrected years of technical mistakes. She covered a wide variety of fundamentals in a short time covering a broad range of music."
Phoenix, AZ teacher:
Review by Jon
"Ken is a talented musician, nice person, and a fantastic teacher. I wanted to branch out into classical guitar after many years of playing other styles. K
en was good at adapting to my background and goals."
San Francisco, CA teacher:
Review by Raymond
"One satisfied student
I took several guitar lessons with Raymond when I was younger. He is an excellent instructor and has the right amount of patience,
dedication, and knowledge for proper musical education. I enjoyed learning new techniques, practice sessions, the study material, and even homework! I wish I lived closer so I could continue taking classes. Thanks!"
Jacksonville, FL teacher:
Raymond (Remi) L.
Review by Leo
Good teacher, very passion with kids. My son really likes this classes."
Chicago, IL teacher:
Review by Amy
Whatever you need in the six string, guitar arena - Marc delivers! From rock to classical; from insights on music theory to quick and easy/
just play around the camp fire type chords. Whatever level of interest you have, genre or style you want to play, Marc is the teacher you are looking for!"
Detroit, MI teacher:
Review by Dennis
"As at least an intermediate guitarist I learned classical guitar from my daughter, William's student.
Although I am a parent of a former student of Willi
am's I would like to submit a review that has been long overdue. It is late here in NH but it took me an hour to figure out how to get here AND write this review and dread missing the opportunity. I felt compelled to find my daughter guitar lessons. I taught myself rock and fingerpicking by ear, never learned to read music but was convinced that classical guitar was the foundation on which guitar playing is best built. So I found the only guitarist I felt I could afford. To this day I have never got more for my money on ANYTHING than the lessons for my daughter with William. He was NEVER late. He epitomizes the virtues of a genuine gentleman - personally,warmly human, and professionally. Though he always came on time he seldom left on time as my daughter had many questions and he never hesitated to answer them until she had no more. I finally confirmed that the version of Stairway To Heaven I had been playing for years was very close to note for note but not note for note when I heard the right notes as my daughter played it - having learned it from William FROM the sheet music! I would go on if it wasn't this late and would be glad to if anyone reading this is interested. Feel free to contact me or comment."
San Bernardino, CA teacher:
Review by Leroy
"Chris is a patient and encouraging teacher, 5 stars"
Washington, DC teacher:
Review by Annette
I am a beginning student. Victor is a very patient teacher and has great ideas for improving my technique. He is reliable and flexible abo
ut scheduling lessons."
Los Angeles, CA teacher:
Review by Stephanie
"Owen is energetic, enthusiastic and incredibly sweet with my daughter during her lessons. She is loving guitar and learning a lot."