Genres: -jazz -funk -rock -blues -R & B -funk -reggae -folk -heavy metal
**FInger style and flat pick
Professor Nick R. (guitar, banjo, mandolin, ukulele, dobro/resonator/slide, lap steel, tenor guitar, baritone resonator, bass, drums, composition) is currently the adjunct professor at Essex College, Jazz clinician for over 19 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.
Nick has been a sideman with Antonique Smith, Jon Batiste, Rob Morrow, John Lithgow, Russell Hall, Vince Giordano & The Nighthawks, Marcus Miller (a new film), Moroccan vocalist/composer, Malika Zarra, Bill Charlap, Frank Vignola, Victor Jones and Cultur-versy, Jim Nolet (Jazz Passengers), Jennifer Jade Ledesna, the late greats Jimmy McGriff, Teddy Charles, Sonny Dallas, Joe Ascione and continues to play for Th
e Hot Sardines, Andrew Nemr (tap dancer), Miles Griffith's New Ting, Terry Waldo, Dandy Wellington, New Orleans’ Aurora Nealand, Gordon Au's Grand St Stompers, Mona's Hot Four, Dr. David Pleasant, Jon Weber, John Colianni, Kim Clarke, Raphael McGregor, Anastasia Rene, Indian/pop singer, Meetu Chilana, & many others.
Nick has played extensively with Malika Zarra, including her Ebony Road CD release with Harvey Wirht, Mamadou Ba, Brahim Frigane and other great world musicians. As a pupil of Pandit Samir Chatterjee, Nick continues to study Indian music, plays harmonium, box tanpura (soon sitar and oud!) and jams with grammy nominated producer/composer/Indian percussionist, Deep Singh (tabla player with Sting) and grammy nominated producer/trumpet player/composer, Frank London on a regular basis.
Nick has also played extensively with ELEW years before, when he was jazz pianist, Eric Lewis and trombonist, Clark Gayton as sideman in various bands, including the James Brown tribute band with the late great, Black Velvet (Charles Bradley) led by Victor Jones.
Nick currently leads/MC's 3 bands: Banjo Nickaru & Western Scooches, Hot Jazz Jumpers and NickR+11
Banjo Nickaru & Western Scooches (with Betina Hershey) album, Get Us Out Of Fearland: #2 album, #2 artist, #5 song with 6 of our songs in top 20 on April 2018 International Folk Music DJs Radio chart!
Over the past two year, Banjo Nickaru Western Scooches has built a solid following in the Eastern U.S. with a half dozen tours while also playing such prestigious events such as NBC affiliate Kansas City TV, Falcon Ridge Fest, Kansas City Folk Fest (main stage), Folk Alliance International, NERFA, WFUV Sunday Supper, Jon Platt's On Your Radar, Blue Plate Special, WMOT Finally Friday, WNCW Studio B Sessions, WoodSongs, Isis Music Hall, the Mid-Winter Folk Fest at Club Passim and recent January 2019 APAP showcase in NYC.
“Nick has worked with artists all over the jazz spectrum. His latest release brings a decidedly unorthodox approach.” DOWNBEAT ⋆⋆⋆⋆
"....the inimitable Banjo Nickaru & Western Scooches"
— John Platt (WFUV)
“A heart as big as the sky…full of high energy and higher spirits.” -Elmore Magazine
“A band that has to be seen to be believed.” — John Platt (WFUV)
"They go back to basics with songs that bask in a genuine roots regimen and a sense of timeless tradition." Elmore Magazine
"Americana music at its purest and most impressive." No Depression
“Unfailingly high-spirited." LONDON TIMES
"...Banjo Nickaru & Western Scooches are ridiculously fun." Rambles.
-Down Beat magazine 2006 Ro review plus [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 Antonique Smith, Jon Batiste (from the Colbert show), Jimmy McGriff, Teddy Charles, Bill Charlap, 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), Dandy Wellington, Jon Weber, Aurora Nealand (from New Orleans), Anastasia Rene, 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)
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.
-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. -lap steel -baritone resonator (slide)
This was my first lesson with Nick. He is a very nice guy. He created a calm, relaxed atmosphere in his studio, and he was clear when he gave me particular instructions. His knowledge of music theory in general, and of the five-string banjo in particular, was quite impressive. I would recommend him highly to both a beginner and to anyone (like myself) who is in need of a refresher course. I am very much looking forward to my next lesson.
April 2, 2019
Nick Russo is a fantastic tutor for kids and adults who would like to learn Ukulele, guitar, banjo or other instruments. He makes ‘learning fun’ he's friendly and cheerful. I don’t have any background in music but, Nick made it easy for me to understand the notes and how it works. I always look forward to every lesson. I Highly recommended Nick to everyone.
March 22, 2019
I’ve been taking guitar lessons with Nick now for a few months and it’s been a terrific experience — cannot say enough good things. Each lesson builds on the last and Nick tailors them to my ability and musical interests mixing in enough music theory, which makes learning both productive and enjoyable. Most importantly I feel like I’m beginning to understand how music works and not just blindly memorizing patterns or scales. I considered online courses before choosing Nick, but there’s no substitution for one-to-one instruction. Nick’s feedback and instruction are invaluable.
I was a little concerned about trying to pick up guitar in my early 40s, but its been a rewarding experience so far and I’m looking forward to more lessons with Nick.
I have been teaching bass, guitar, and piano for over 10 years and have been playing all those instruments for over 12 years. I have experience teaching kids as young as five as well as adults. I enjoy having a variety of students.
I received a Bachelors in Music from Manhattan School of Music where my major was Jazz Bass Performance. I also studied a wide range of other subjects including piano, composition, and arranging. I also have a Masters in Music Education at Teachers College (Columbia University).
I am very passionate about music as well as teaching and I want to inspire my students.
I play with a variety of artists in New York City and have toured extensively both nationally and internationally.
I have performed with artists including Ethan Iverson, Albert "Tootie" Heath, Billy Hart, Gr
eg Osby, Jason Moran, Dave Liebman, Steve Wilson, Ambrose Akinmusire and Aaron Parks and have studied with teachers including Jay Anderson, David Grossman, Larry Grenadier and Ben Street.
I look forward to helping you grow as a musician and learning from you as well!
All the best, Martin
*** Lesson Details *** My primary mission is to help you accomplish the goals you have set for yourself. Within the first lesson I want to learn what you hope to achieve. I always ask my students what music they love and want to learn more about.
I want to use the music that you connect with to help you grow on your instrument. I will also teach you the techniques needed to play the instrument and expose you to the different styles possible on the instrument.
I tailor my teaching to each student's needs, concerns, strengths and weaknesses. I use a variety of teaching tools, including books and recordings, based on what I think will help you.
I am very patient, fun, and engaging. I guarantee that within 1 lesson you will feel inspired and ready to embark on an exciting musical journey.
*** Studio Equipment *** The studio lessons take place in the living room with a piano, upright bass, and guitar. Seating is available.
*** Travel Equipment *** I use public transportation. I expect the student to provide an instrument and if possible, the book we are working through. Otherwise I will provide the book.
*** Specialties *** I specialize in jazz, but can teach classical, rock, pop, funk, r and b,
I've just started with Martin and I couldn't be happier. He is very knowledgeable and attentive to details in our lessons. He posseses all of the basic qualities of a good teacher. I'm excited that I'm finally playing upright bass.
Any levels from the beginner to advanced students would be able to learn how to play the bass from scratch or learn new techniques of playing on bass, from jazz style to funk and rock bass playing,
Hi, my name is Alex and I'm a Professional Guitar / Music Teacher with B.A. and M.A. in Guitar / Music Education. I have over 25 years of experience giving private lessons and teaching in schools in the Tri-state area to students of all ages and levels, from a complete beginner to advanced. I cover different styles - from Classical to Jazz, Pop to Bossa Nova, Blues to Rock, Heavy-Metal to Progressive. Whether you would like to learn to play the guitar from the beginning or just to improve your technique or soloing - I will be able to help you out. All ages and levels of students from beginners to advanced are accepted. The atmosphere of the lessons is relaxed and fun, helping the student progress and get the best results. I prefer to vary the lessons so that many various styles and genres could be covered - plus the student's favorite
songs as well. In addition to lessons for Acoustic and Electric Guitars, I also offer lessons on Bass Guitar, Saxophone, Clarinet and Piano.
Education and Experience: B.A. & M.A.in Guitar and Music Education from Brooklyn College. Music school training from early age on Guitar, Piano, Saxophone and Clarinet. Performed with various ensembles, groups and bands in musical genres ranging from Classical music to Rock. Taught private music lessons in New York Tri-state area for over 25 years to students of various ages and levels. For the last 10 years teaching music at a public school in Staten Island. Classes ranging from 4th through 8th Grade and including: Guitar Ensemble, Band, Chorus, General Music & a modern after-school Rock Band.
*** Lesson Details *** The atmosphere of my lessons is quite laid-back, helping students progress naturally and achieve the best result. Having many years of experience in both teaching theory and practice allows me to make every lesson educational yet fun. I love teaching, and tailor the lessons to the individual - working through the fundamentals, new techniques, and of course, having a blast learning how to play your favorite music. After 3 to 6 months, my students are able to play songs with various chords, be able to read simple music and start learning how to improvise.
*** Studio Equipment *** Living Room: Amps, guitars, full keyboard.
*** Travel Equipment *** I would provide the book for the student on the first lesson, however after that the student would have to purchase the book. I will have my own instrument, but the student must have their own instrument in order to be ready for the lesson. I do have a number of guitars and if its a guitar student - I would be able to let the student use one of my guitars on the first lesson.
*** Specialties *** I teach many various styles and incorporate the reading and music literacy in all of the styles. I specialize in teaching Classical and Rock genres of music. However I have taught: Metal, Bossa Nova, Pop, Punk, Flamenco, Progressive. Teaching classical genre - I incorporate a lot of various techniques that are very broad in spectrum to help the student learn to perform the music, read, improvise and compose. Teaching Rock genre - I teach my students to read music as well and concentrate on improvising and soloing techniques as well.
Alex is a very patient and down to earth teacher. I've had teachers before but none have helped me progress as fast as Alex. He is very knowledgeable and shows me what a wonderful instrument the guitar is. I'm always excited to play more after our lessons. Would highly recommend him to anyone who wants to pick up the guitar.
February 16, 2019
I've been Alex's student for over 3 years and I've definitely noticed how much of a great teacher he is. He is very resourceful and knowledgeable so he can teach a lot of different genres from classical to the pop songs we hear today. His ability to teach makes it easy for me to learn and understand songs and pieces. Not only that, Alex cares about my progress and makes sure that I'm not confused or lost about any of the material he teaches me. In my time with Alex, I've noticed how much progress I've made and definitely recommend him for anyone who's looking to learn how to play the guitar.
Everything I know about the bass is through The Beatles
Dominic is a graduate of the Boston Conservatory of Music, currently teaching as Assistant Professor of Voice at Berklee College of Music. Dominic has years of experience teaching people of all ages, and in all styles of music. Professionally, he has performed in National Tours, Off Broadway, and in major films.
"Music has always been my absolute favorite thing in the world. As far as I know, I am the only teacher in New York City who teaches Voice, Piano, Guitar, Bass and Trumpet."
Currently Dominic's studio consists of - An Academy Award winner A Tony Award nominee Four students are currently performing on Broadway
BFA The Boston Conservatory of Music Lyric Baritone
Notable Quotes about Dominic:
Ken Nelson (Coldplay) - "Fantastic voice" Kenneth 'Babyface' Edmonds - "Really cool songs"
Bass guitar is one of my main instruments. I gig the most on this instrument as well.
I am a Hofstra University graduate with over fifteen years of experience in music. I have played at many of the venues in the NYC area and have toured with the R&B singer Macy Gray. I am currently working with four different bands in the tri-state area in addition to the session work.
*** Lesson Details *** In my lessons I take a step by step approach on learn how to move and how to understand the instrument at hand. I require all of my students to learn how to read sheet music and how to translate onto their instrument. I'm a laid back teacher and will teach what is most appealing to the student but in an academic style. I teach the student not just to play but to understand what it is he or she is playing. I will cater to any level of playing and help give a path to further their knowledge of playing.
Carissa Austria, age 8, learned piano with Jeff. Her lessons were instrumental in giving her the incentive to practice on her own. Jeff created lessons that made my daughter curious on how to play on her own and experimented with certain keys and sounds. Thank you Jeff for giving my daughter the deep insight to playing the piano not only from her weekly lessons but encouraging her to practice on her own with minimum supervision.
Electric bass lessons cover Pick & Finger style bass. Different styles and feels are worked on with a drum machine during lessons. Student picks The songs they would like play.
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 have yielded great results.
I learned a lot in my first lesson with Brian. He clearly knows the guitar inside and out. The pace was on the faster side, but he answered all my questions about technique and theory. Beyond what I wanted to focus on (technique), he's laying a solid foundation for theory so that I don't have go rely on the capo or online tabs as much. He also gave me useful scale exercises to build up finger independence and articulation. So far so good.
February 2, 2019
Brian is very friendly and ofcourse a professional. Today was our first lesson, and it was a great experience, I look forward to continue learning from him. Thank you Brian! 😊
December 14, 2018
Brian was a great teacher! He I was well prepared and always on time. He was patient with me not remembering all the notes and simply said “it takes time” or “you’ll get it next time”.
Brianl loves music and shares that love in every lesson and in his overall teaching approach.
I have been playing the bass guitar as my primary instrument since 2000. I have performed, recorded and written with a number of successful bands in the past. I am happy to take students at any skill level, and for any style. I believe strongly in integrating music theory and ultimately moving students toward musical self-suffiency, rather than focusing exclusively on learning particular pieces.
Hi, there! My name is Ben and I can't wait to meet you! I've been teaching private lessons since 2012 and have taught students of all ages from 3 to adult. I have experience not just with teaching but also with writing, recording, and performing music in successful bands and on multiple instruments and in multiple genres. I am comfortable teaching piano, guitar, and bass guitar, ukulele, and I especially love teaching music theory. I have extensive theory training at the college level and have written and composed extensively in the classical, rock, jazz, and folk traditions. I look forward to meeting you and helping you to achieve your musical goals.
Ben has been instructing my 2 kids (now aged 11 and 9) in-home for at least 5 years. We started off with piano for the first few years but then switched to a combination of piano and acoustic guitar (half a session dedicated to each instrument).
He is patient, kind, and highly knowledgeable. I clearly see the upward trajectory in my kids' musical capabilities. One of my kids can be difficult to deal with, especially when he is tired, but Ben would mold his approach to the lesson on the spot to keep my kid engaged (e.g., instead of continuing the lesson on the actual piano, he'd switch to a fun music-oriented game).
September 4, 2019
I hadn't played a musical instrument since elementary school when I started Ukulele lessons with Ben. Ben started from the beginning, answered all my questions along the way, and built upon that information in each lesson. It wasn't in a didactic way, but in a way that was really customized to fit my Ukulele lesson goals. Ben's teaching style is very flexible also. I had some Ukulele lesson books I had been gifted and we worked from those. I didn't feel that I had to buy a bunch of additional equipment, books, etc.
I recommend Ben as a music teacher. He is understanding, encouraging, and inspirational. I am looking forward to continuing lessons with Ben and JC Instrumental.
August 28, 2019
Ben has been working with our daughter since January 2019, when she turned 6 1/2. He arrives at our home on time each week and he works with her at an age appropriate level. We appreciate that he recognizes the effort she puts into the weeks when she practices often and he gently makes her aware when she hasn't practiced enough. He always speaks with her in a kind way and with us in a collaborative manner. We all want her to enjoy her piano experience, and we are thankful to have found Ben just a few blocks away from our home.
Whether you’re laying down a solid groove or mastering the fretboard, these lessons are sure to give you all the techniques you’d need to be a well rounded bassist.
Ashley is a multi-instrumentalist with a deep love for both music and teaching. She strongly believes that the arts help further one's skills in nearly every discipline. Primarily, Ashley is a saxophonist. She also plays the bass, cello, and pitched percussion' as well as sings. All of her music lessons have uniquely developed lesson plans to fit her students' needs. Ashley believes that there is something wonderful in the uniqueness that music students find within themselves and hopes to further promote a sense of independence, high self-esteem, and confidence through her lessons.
"We were so lucky to have been referred to Tommy. Our middle school son wanted to branch out from playing the upright/classic bass, to electric bass and a
coustic guitar. Tommy worked with our son for nearly 2 years. Tommy was always reliable, always prompt, always polite and 100% committed to the music and to our son's personal progress & improvement. He was always flexible, upbeat and easy to work with...with the patience of a saint...esp. for the parent who knows nothing about guitar. A huge talent!"
"John is so encouraging, and he was able to read my abilities and needs in just a few moments. I'm looking forward to more lessons!"
"Paul was great. Easy to talk to and understand. Looks like a good fit for me. Looking forward to my next practice."
"All around wonderful teacher
Marcus is quite the gifted teacher. By far the best I've had the pleasure to aspire under. He is very easy to understand, an
d doesn't overwhelm you, taking time on the little things (the most important). He creates an atmosphere that is encouraging to learn in. We all know those teachers that create a stressful environment that inhibits progressive learning, as well as frustration in yourself. Marcus is certainly the opposite. He is also quite easy to communicate with--Creating lesson plans, setting goals, etc... In summation, a professional and a friend I would recommend to anyone and everyone."
"Not being a complete beginner, I sought David's instruction to improve my skill set. I really enjoyed the way David breaks down complicated topics into ma
nageable components that I can drill in between lessons. I was mostly a metal head but through exploration, David also opened me up to the idea of Jazz and improvisation. As a bonus, we had some really good functional programming conversations as well. He is also a talented Scala engineer."
"Gabriel is an amazing music teacher not only is he helping me with bass guitar but also understanding a bit of music theory. He shows me ways to to help m
aximize the amount of learning I can get out of practicing. Overall he is a great teacher with knowledge of a multitude of instruments and music in general."
"Very knowledgeable. Clearly been teaching for a long time as the lesson plan is very fluid and very efficient. Makes fantastic metaphor comparisons to mak
e musical theory make sense. Will definitely return for extensive lessons."
"Very professional and talented musician! My son is really enjoying his lessons with Aldrin."
Looking for a way to make your bass lines move? Bass guitar teacher Miller W. shares his three step plan to creating walking bass lines...
The walking bass line is one of the most fundamental parts of American music. It is found most commonly in blues and jazz, but as you learn bass guitar, you will hear its influence in almost any style of music. A walking bass line provides a strong rhythmic and harmonic foundation by smoothly moving from each chord to the next using four quarter notes pe …