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Jersey City, NJ Ukulele Lessons

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About Nick R.

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Forest Hills, NY

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finger style and plectrum (pick) techniques

Both soprano and baritone uke tunings

About Nick
Professor Nick R. (guitar, banjo, mandolin, ukulele, dobro/resonator/slide, tenor guitar, baritone resonator, bass, drums, composition) is currently the adjunct professor at Essex College, Jazz clinician for over 16 years via Kupferberg Center (Queens College) and has been on the staff at Great Neck Music Conservatory. Nick has given lectures at Manhattanville College, at Queens College and at schools, nationally.

-Down Beat magazine current issue [Jan/Feb 2016] Hot Jazz Jumpers' "The Very Next Thing" DVD/CD review

-Jazz Insider magazine current issue [Dec 2015]
2.5 page interview

-Just Jazz Guitar magazine interview [February 2015 issue]

-Vanity Fair magazine (August 2013) interview

"Summer of 2013, Nick R. performed at Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin's home. It was an honor to meet Paul McCartney and jam with him while
he played toy harmonica. Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Iridium, Bluenote, Birdland, U.N., IAJE, Cape Cod Jazz Festival, NJPAC, Sweet Rhythm, Smalls, Zinc Bar, Smoke Jazz Club, internationally: Japan, Spain, Russia, Brasil, St. Kitts, Canada, France, Bermuda, Sweden, Israel

-Toured/recorded and/or worked as sideman with Jimmy McGriff, Teddy Charles, Sonny Dallas, Victor Jones and Cultur-versy, Vince Giordano & The Night Hawks, Frank Vignola/Joe Ascione, Miles Griffith, David Pleasant, Jim Nolet (former violinist for the Jazz Passengers), Anastasia Rene, Jon Weber, Mona's Hot Four, Gordon Au's Grand Street Stompers, Michael Arenella's Dreamland Orchestra, with Jesse Gelber, Raphael McGregor, Emily Asher's Garden Party, and many other groups.

-Appears in Sam Mendes Film "Away We Go"

-Movie Soundtrack: King George.

-Guitar/banjo: "Jew Grows in Brooklyn," "Take Me Along," "The Big Apple Circus" + others.

-Banjo/Guitar Chair: "New Girl In Town" (Irish Rep Theatre)

-Author: Metallica Legendary Licks series,volume 1 & 2)
-Editor GRP chords (both Cherry Lane Music/Hal Leonard).

M.A. from the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College
(partial scholarship)

B.S. from S.U.N.Y. Stony Brook, graduated magna cum laude. Dean's list all semesters

-Published interview (book): A New Face of Jazz (Cicily Janus)

-Playing guitar/banjo on first episode of new PBS cartoon "Peg and Cat"

- Current adjunct professor at Essex College

-Guest lecturing professor at Manhattanville College

-Substitute adjunct professor at Queens College

-Winning participant: I.A.J.E. with Miles Griffith's New Ting 2007. Performance and educational certificate granted.

-Winning participant; part-scholarship award: 2004 International Jazz Workshop at BANFF Centre, Canada (dir, Dave Douglas)

-Winning participant; full-scholarship award of the 2001 JAS academy in Aspen Colorado (dir, Christian McBride (Down Beat Dec. 2001)

-Studying Bol (Indian rhythmic system) with tabla player, Pandit Samir Chatterjee 2006-2007; 2013-current

-Studied with Pat Martino, Billy Bauer, Ben Monder, Tony Purrone, Pete Bernstein, Dr. Stephen Salerno, Dr. David Belser

-Studying African Rhythms with drummer, Harvey Wirht

*** Lesson Details ***
With over 20 years teaching experience, Nick is patient with children & adults. He has a creative, unique pedagogy emphasizing hearing through singing, ear-training & natural, organic listening. Nick instills healthy absorption of music while students have fun learning their music, sight reading, internalizing with focus on rhythm and time.
As a student, you will get to work on music that you, the student select as well as work on sight-reading, technique, ear-training. We will also work out of method books and use other sources of information.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Chairs, music stands, instrument stands, classical foot pedals, classical guitar pillows, guitar amps, guitar, banjo, mandolin, ukulele, drum set. Students usually provide their own instruments but it's possible to borrow an instrument during the lesson at the studio on the first lesson. (free street parking right in front!)

*** Specialties ***
Nick's pedagogy emphasizes ear-training, singing, reading and truly hearing the music we are working on. Rather than rote teaching and guitar tablature, he instills natural listening, transcribing, sight-reading and proper technique. Lessons are always enjoyable as Nick observes each student's unique needs and listen's to their song preferences and musical goals. Students have the opportunity to learn pieces and genres they select and they are trained to figure out tunes by ear (ear-training) and transcribe.

Nick teaches:

-classical guitar and Brazilian guitar (nylon 6 string and nylon 7 string guitar)
-acoustic steel string guitar, electric 6 string and electric 7 string guitar
- jazz guitar + an eclectic mix of styles: blues, Brazilian music, Latin Jazz, Afro-Peruvian, Indian music, rock, heavy metal, funk, R & B, Motown, reggae + other genres.
- tenor banjo (traditional jazz, jazz from New Orleans, Dixieland and world music)
-5 string banjo (Earl Scruggs finger picking [bluegrass and country])
-tenor guitar
-ukulele
-mandolin
-resonator slide/Dobro.
-baritone resonator (slide)
...
Reviews
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Matthew H. January 18, 2017
· Guitar · In studio
He does a great job cater the lessons to your needs
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Bryan October 8, 2016
· Guitar · In home
At just my 1st lesson with Mr. Russo -- HE'S THE MAN!!! Very concerned with getting the most out teaching/reaching the student!!! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED; thanks to Takelessons!!!
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Sara G. October 3, 2016
· Ukulele · In home
Great musician, great instructor. Learned more than I ever thought I would be able to at this age. Very patient.
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Nick R.

Nick R.

Forest Hills, NY 11375
(16)
starting at
$42 / 30-min

About John L.

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Hastings on Hudson, NY

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Love to teach beginners and intermediate students.
I teach all uke students how to read, theory, songs and how to understand playing the instrument solo or in a group setting.
Uke is capable of doing anything, all one has to do is apply oneself and music can come flowing out of the instrument.

About John
Hello,

Thanks so much for taking the time to inquire about studying music with me.

Music and studying music has always been a passionate experience for me. I have been so blessed with the teachers and fellow musicians in my life. You should realize that your study of music may start with me, but it will last your entire lifetime. I hope that all of your life you will have a rewarding relationship to music and the spirit of great sounds!

I have performed in great jazz clubs in New York, on Broadway, and performing arts centers across the country. I'm currently playing in many great performing ensembles. I have put out two CD's as a leader and played on multiple CD's for other artists.

It has been my pleasure to teach privately, as well as in the classroom for 15 years. I enjoy performing many different types of music. I pri
de myself on being very open minded in terms of musical taste. Never apologize for liking what you like! I bet there is something in that music which is great. I can't wait to learn something from the music you introduce to me.

I be glad to provide a full resume to anyone who requests it.

*** Lesson Details ***

My most important goal for each student is that they get to where they want to be musically.

I want the student to be able to play the way he or she wants to play. If you want to learn to play one song, that is great! If you want to learn to play one classical etude that is just as great! If you want to learn how to play in a salsa band, bravo! I treat the desires of my students as my curriculum. Each student will receive special prep time from me each week. I pride myself in taking the time and energy to prepare for each meeting. Every time you complete a lesson, it is my hope that you are walking away as a better musician.

In the beginning I hope to find what will musically interests you the most. Usually, you might have a goal that requires you to play on a higher level than you do presently. If that is true, we might take some time to figure out a road map to get you to that place. Along the way, I'm sure you and I will learn many new concepts and techniques that aid you in becoming the bassist/musician you want to be.

And rest assured, the teacher always learns from the student...this is the best part of teaching: learning from the student.

*** Studio Equipment ***

Studio: 3 electric basses, plenty of amps and chords, one acoustic bass, piano, ukulele, guitar, computer playback and recording.

*** Travel Equipment ***
As requested

*** Specialties ***
I have been lucky to play tons of different types of music. I believe I can give musicians and aspiring musicians a deep understanding of what is most important in many different styles of music. Music I have been lucky enough to study and play professionally: Jazz, Rock, Funk, Afro-Cuban, Brazilian, Blues, Classical, Pop.
I'm also a very good transcriber, so if there is a song you heard on the radio we can definitely play it! Ear training could be an area in which I could be of service to you as well.
I have many arranging and composing credits and I would be glad to help students in this area whenever requested.
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Reviews
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Aidan September 9, 2016
· Guitar · In studio
Very comfortable atmosphere. John asked my son what his goals were and tgen taylored instruction to help him meet those goals..We were very pleased! We highly recommend him.
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Okokon O. March 5, 2015
· Guitar · In home
Mr Lang is great guitar tutor.
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Aviane V. October 30, 2013
· Piano ·
Love my lessons

John is an amazing teacher all around. Very professional and good at getting me to understand things which may be a bit confusing. I am currently reading and playing between four books and I never thought it would be possible especially just after taking lessons for a year. Sometimes I feel a bit frustraited when I am not able to play certain pieces or when I dont understand a concept but John is great at breaking everything down and making it easier. I am now realizing how my piano skills can be utilizied in my other music projects. When I attend my lessons I am reminded why I love having them so much. With him as my instructor I can see my skills improving and I know I will only get better. I recommend piano lessons to everyone and if you are looking to have a great teacher John is your go to person !
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John L.

John L.

Hastings on Hudson, NY 10706
(14)
starting at
$45 / 30-min

About Gio A.

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New York, NY
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I'm a professional musician and instructor, teaching various instruments for over ten years. My main instruments are guitar and drums/percussion, but I've also played and taught piano, mandolin, ukulele, and harmonica.

I would love to work with novice ukulele players of any age, to get you through the basics - chords, melodies, rhythms, strumming, finger-picking, and so much more! We can learn popular songs for the ukulele and/or talk about reading and writing music on the ukulele. I'll structure lessons according to the age, skill level, and interest of the student.

About Gio
I studied music at UCF (Orlando), focusing on classical and jazz guitar, but I also have years of experience playing rock, blues, folk, hip-hop, and musical theater on both guitar and drums.

I have been teaching guitar, drums, and piano for about eight years to students of all ages. Music is what I'm passionate about and it's what I enjoy. I want to inspire that same passion into the hearts and minds of others.

*** Lesson Details ***
I am a laid-back teacher, fun, and I focus on the needs, abilities, and ambitions of the student. In turn, students must realize that learning an instrument takes a lot of work and dedication. One can't expect to learn very much if s/he only practices or thinks about the instrument during the lesson. If the student is willing to put some time into practicing, then I will help them go far!

*** Studi
o Equipment ***
I have several guitars, a drum kit, djembe, mandolin, clarinet and full-size keyboard.

*** Specialties ***
Guitar: Classical, jazz, American or Irish folk, rock and pop; lead or rhythm.
Drums & Percussion: All genres
Piano: Classical (includes sight reading)
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Reviews
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Ian C. July 7, 2017
· Drum · In studio
1 lesson and he wants to go back so it is a win for me.. Gio is an educator and knowledgeable on many instruments.
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Steve May 6, 2016
· Guitar · In studio
Gio is an encouraging and helpful teacher!
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Julianne April 26, 2016
· Piano · In studio
My son Joseph just completed his 5th lesson with Gio and he LOVES his piano classes. Gio is very patient and dedicated to Joseph. Glad that my son is taking lessons from him.
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Gio A.

Gio A.

New York, NY 10034
(15)
starting at
$28 / 30-min

About Matthew K.

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New York, NY
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About Matthew
I have been playing professionally for over 30 years and have taught for over 10. I am proficient on keyboards, guitar, bass, ukelele, as well as lead and harmony vocals and songwriting. My focus is on developing your musical intuition through ear training, and accessing the music within. I have a home recording studio to help with the learning process. I provide a fun, safe, non-critical environment where you can access your inner musician in the most enjoyable way possible.

Many of my students have gone onto become prolific songwriters and musicians and have recorded albums. Even beginners can learn quickly from my method which emphasizes techniques for keeping learning music fun.

My 10th CD was released last year on Sojourn Records and was featured as NPR song of the day. Over the years my music has received much critical accl
aim as I have continued to tour the world. I have opened for legends such as David Bowie, Ron Sexsmith, Robyn Hitchcock, Morphine, Bob Mould, Freedy Johnston, among many others. I have produced over a dozen albums by other artists and songwriters, and composed for major motion pictures including last years film, WON’T BACK DOWN starring Maggie Gyllenhaal.

“In a career spanning more than 20 years, he has established himself as one of America's great under-the-radar songwriters. Had he emerged five decades back, he might have been a Tin Pan Alley stalwart, turning out intelligent, accessible songwriting with the clockwork genius of and Gary Goffin. His work is rife with the clever, incisive tunefulness that marked that era.”-- National Public Radio

*** Lesson Details ***
Students can expect to discover or re-discover their love for music and and their own natural musical inclinations. Many students report an increased sense of joy and possibility in their own lives. Curriculum depends on level of student, but is focused on being able to play favorite songs, develop comfort and ease in playing style, and accessing creativity and originality in approach. After 3 to 6 months working with me, most students can feel comfortable calling themselves a musician!

*** Specialties ***
I teach mainly guitar, keyboards, ukelele, and voice from beginning up to intermediate. I try to incorporate songwriting into the process as i find that it speeds up the process and helps to encourage enthusiasm and a more focused effort and better results. I am fluent in most styles but come from a folk, rock, country, pop background. I also have a home studio and use recording techniques to develop style and vocal ability.
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Reviews
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Sandra August 9, 2017
· Ukulele · In home
Matt is an awesome teacher. He quickly assessed my skill level and met me there with new song covers, new strum patterns, and finger picking tutorials. As an intermediate ukulele-ist who's beginning to explore songwriting, I feel very fortunate to have crossed paths with Matt. He encourages me to share my work, and jams along, opening up rhythmic and harmonic possibilities I wouldn't think of on my own. In home recording technology is also a huge perk!
Very fun teacher, highly recommended!
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Joan T. May 12, 2017
· Ukulele · In studio
Matt is a great teacher and super talented musician! I really enjoy learning from a musician that plays multiple instruments. His teaching method is innovative and fun yet easy to understand. I've taken 2 lessons from him so far and already felt more confident. He is encouraging and can't wait to learn more from him!
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Bill S. March 15, 2017
· Piano · In studio
Excellent instructor. He explained music theory in a way I could understand.

He gave me exercises I could practice at home.
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Matthew K.

Matthew K.

New York, NY 10014
(16)
starting at
$40 / 30-min

About Stephen D.

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Yonkers, NY
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Ukulele is a kind of portable guitar. you can have almost all the expressive capabilities, styles and techniques of the guitar, and you can put it in the overhead bin when you fly!

About Stephen
I have been playing music on the violin since the age of 7, composing since I was 14, and playing and performing on the guitar since I was 18. I've written a lot of music, and this past spring had works performed in Virginia and two in Manhattan.

I have taught music for over 15 years, in colleges, music schools and privately. One thing that I have noticed is that, with more experience, I have a lot more fun--and so do my students.
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Sandra March 8, 2017
· Banjo · In home
Stephen is amazing and talented. He is very understanding of the initial frustration of learning a new instrument and makes it interesting and fun.
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Megan October 14, 2015
· Violin · In home
Mr. D is a very good teacher at violin. I give him 5 stars because he is nice and a good teacher.
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Eve September 29, 2015
· Classical Guitar · In studio
Stephen has been teaching my son Classical Guitar lessons for over four years now, and he is one of the best music instructors we've had. Stephen is a very motivated and inspiring teacher, my son absolutely loves his music classes. We are happy to have a truly dedicated teacher, who loves working with kids and is able to pass his genuine passion for music to others. Thank you, Stephen!
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Stephen D.

Stephen D.

Yonkers, NY 10705
(4)
starting at
$40 / 30-min
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About Brian C.

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New Rochelle, NY

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Lean all the basics! Basic songs, chords & melodies are taught.

About Brian
I graduated Cum Laude from New York University, where I received a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Guitar Performance. I have performed all styles of music on club dates, college shows, concerts, and recording dates.

I have also released a full length commercial recording of my original pop/rock music. Currently,I am teaching full time, performing, and composing.

I enjoy working with new students to develop their playing. My experience and teaching skills has yielded great results.
...
Reviews
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Stafford W. March 21, 2017
· Piano · In home
Brian has been wonderful so far! He is great with our 6 year old and challenges him at an appropriate level while still making the lessons and learning very fun.
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Sahteen G. February 8, 2017
· Piano · In home
My daughter enjoyed the lesson and couldnt wait to play Mary Had a Little Lamb for me when I got home from work. Thanks Brian!
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Sophia January 19, 2017
· Guitar · In home
First impression is great!
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Brian C.

Brian C.

New Rochelle, NY 10804
(14)
starting at
$40 / 30-min

About Jordan G.

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West Orange, NJ
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I feel that ukulele is a great way to introduce anyone to the string family of instruments because of its size, and the fact that it is often easier to learn than guitar. The first instrument I ever learned was actually the Uke, and I have been playing it ever since.

About Jordan
Hi, my name is Jordan. I am a Freshman Music and Theatre Education student at Seton Hall University. I have experience with many genres of music including classical, jazz, pop/rock, and Broadway. In addition to being a multi instrumentalist, I am also a songwriter, and have released a full length country album with Bongo Boy Records. My specialty and biggest passion is country and rock music, however I'm also classically trained in voice and in various instruments. Although I'm young, I have lots of experience so if you are looking for quality lessons in voice, stand up bass, guitar, bass guitar, banjo, ukulele, piano, or other beginning instruments, id be happy to oblige :)

PS. I didn't renew my background check but I'm a 19 year old college student, not a criminal.
...
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Jordan G.

Jordan G.

West Orange, NJ 07052
starting at
$20 / 30-min

About Brandon D.

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New York, NY
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Lessons are custom tailored to the student, based around the music they love, and the techniques and tools required to achieve their musical goals.

About Brandon
-Bio-
Brandon Davis is a New York-based bassist, composer and educator. He is a recent dean’s list graduate of the Manhattan School of Music’s Masters in Music program for Jazz Performance as an upright bass major. He primarily plays and teaches upright bass and improvisation, but also offers lessons in electric bass, beginner to intermediate guitar, and beginner ukulele and piano. As a performer, Brandon has experience playing in jazz, folk, and classical settings all throughout Toronto and New York.

-As a Teacher-
My goal as a teacher is to foster a strong and healthy foundation, so that students are well equipped to pursue and explore music as they desire. Lessons focus on developing core skills, such as music literacy and a healthy, proficient technique, and on fostering a healthy learning process – one that ensures that music is
not just fun, but a rewarding, joy-filled process of discovery for a student. It is easy to focus on producing results and treating music competitively, but in my own studies, I have found that it is vital to be able to enjoy the process of learning, or else that original joy for music will be stifled. It has taken me years to learn this, and I hope to spare students that lost time. To this end, lesson materials are chosen specifically for each student, to best cater to their strengths, weaknesses, and musical tastes and goals. I teach attentively, ensuring that students are working on music that engages them, and am always working to discern a pace that encourages and gently challenges students.
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Brandon D.

Brandon D.

New York, NY 10040
starting at
$40 / 30-min

About Kate D.

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New York, NY

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Focus on technique, chords, and learning songs.

About Kate
I am a singer, multi-instrumentalist, and songwriter who is very interested in teaching younger kids about self expression through music and writing. I have a Bachelor's degree in music performance from the Manhattan School of Music and have been working as a professional musician (within many genres) for a decade.
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Melissa P. May 25, 2017
· Ukulele · In home
Kate is fantastic!! She has such a warm, easygoing personality, and I was very comfortable having her in my home. She is extremely knowledgeable about the uke and was able to immediately recognize my strengths and weaknesses. I feel challenged, but not overwhelmed. I had so much fun and can't wait for next week's lesson!
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Kate D.

Kate D.

New York, NY 10013
(1)
starting at
$60 / 30-min

About Chris S.

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Brooklyn, NY
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My lessons are tailored to your skills and interests, built on a foundation of good technique and musicianship that will make it easier and more fun to learn the uke.

About Chris
PHILOSOPHY
I believe that playing the ukulele is an investment in your (and your family's and your friends') happiness. Though it is a fun, light, and approachable instrument, it can also -- with time and practice -- be played skillfully and technically.

APPROACH
Where other instructors may just teach songs, I like to explore the "why" of everything: why a G7 instead of just a G? Why a certain strumming pattern? Why does the bridge change the second time around? This way, students pick up a little more theory and technique, making them all-around better musicians, and making it easier to pick up songs on their own.

GOAL
I think the world would be a happier place if everyone played the uke. Playing it is an act of meditation and mindfulness, it relaxes and centers you when you play. And, yes, it's also great at parties. I want to empowe
r and motivate students to continue learning on their own -- beyond what I'm able to teach -- so that the love of ukulele can spread beyond my reach.

ABOUT ME
I've been playing uke for a little over five years, but I've been a musician all my life. I played piano when I was younger, then guitar, and eventually bass. I have sung in a few bands and choruses, and I continue to play a variety of instruments today -- though primarily the uke.

I picked up my first ukulele on a trip up the Pacific Coast Highway and fell instantly in love with it. I like to play (and sing!) everything from contemporary pop songs to classical. I'm motivated by learning, and as a former high school English teacher and tutor, I know from experience that there's much to learn from teaching.
...
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Chris S.

Chris S.

Brooklyn, NY 11217
starting at
$34 / 30-min

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Ukulele Lesson Reviews from Students

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

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Recent Ukulele Articles from the Blog

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

How Ukulele Artist Danielle Ate the Sandwich Built Her Music Career Online

How Ukulele Artist Danielle Ate the Sandwich Built Her Music Career Online

If you've spent any time checking out rising musicians on YouTube, you've probably seen Danielle Ate the Sandwich's popular original songs or cover videos. Danielle is a uke-slinging singer-songwriter with a dash of comedy who touts inspirations like Paul Simon, Death Cab for Cutie, and Katy Perry. I got the chance to talk with Danielle today about her musical upbringing, writing the songs for her new album The Drawing Back of Curtains, and her personal journey of growing up as an artist … Read More

How Ukulele Artist Danielle Ate the Sandwich Built Her Music Career Online
If you've spent any time checking out rising musicians on YouTube, you've probably seen Danielle Ate the Sandwich's popular original songs or cover videos. Danielle is a uke-slinging singer-songwriter with a dash of comedy who touts inspirations like Paul Simon, Death Cab for Cutie, and Katy Perry. I got the chance to talk with Danielle today about her musical upbringing, writing the songs for her new album The Drawing Back of Curtains, and her personal journey of growing up as an artist
The History of the Ukulele: All Your Questions Answered
  The ukulele is a unique instrument that is loved all over the globe for its simplicity and cheerful sound. However, many people incorrectly assume that the ukulele had its origin in Hawaii. Although the state plays an important role in the development of the ukulele's image, the initial version of the ukulele was surprisingly not developed in Hawaii. Keep reading to find out where the ukulele originated, and more interesting facts about its unique history. The Unique History
Which Online Ukulele Tuner is the Best?
Whether you’re a complete beginner or a seasoned player, your ukulele won’t sound good if it’s out of tune. Unfortunately, not everyone can attain perfect pitch tuning by ear, but thanks to online ukulele tuners, you don’t have to! Let’s take a look at four of the most popular options. UkeTune If you’re looking for a simple, no-frills ukulele tuner that won’t overwhelm you with ads, alternate tuning options and other potentially confusing features, UkeTune fits the bill. This easy-to-us
How to Play Ukulele: Easy Chords to Get You Started
When you first start learning how to play ukulele, chords are a great place to begin. Chords are groups of notes that, when played together, create a harmony. Learning to strum a sequence of chords is a great way to practice ukulele and eventually learn to play songs. Luckily, learning how to play ukulele chords can be quite simple once you get started. First we'll go over one basic chord and how to read chord charts and by the end of this article you'll be ready to strum away! Note: Make
Challenge Yourself With These 7 Advanced Ukulele Chords
Ukulele has more to offer than just easy chords and melodies. Music teacher Andy T. shares some movable ukulele chords to push you to continue to build your ukulele skills... If you’re reading this, you’ve likely mastered a handful of major and minor chords on your ukulele. With thousands of songs at your fingertips, you're ready to bring delight to everyone within earshot. However, as you devour more and more songs, you start to see some unfamiliar symbols and additions to your beloved ukule

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