Orinda Music Lessons

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Music Lesson Reviews from Students

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Popular Music Teachers Near Orinda

Check out some of our most popular teachers near Orinda including Emeryville, Lafayette, Moraga, Berkeley and Canyon.

John D. Berkeley, CA

About John

*** Lesson Details *** My students will develop a passion for music and a desire to play! I like to get right to the experience of actually playing music. I start with learning songs, drum beats, and chord progressions and get to technique and music reading AFTER we have had some fun. My key to successful teaching is to create a custom curriculum for each student. Some students are interested in the details of how to do it "right", and others just want to rock. I try to adapt to different learning styles and musical goals to give each student an ideal experience. I want students to learn how to play, not just how to read or do drills. We will listen to music together, and talk about the function of each instrument. For drummers, I play bass lines on the piano and we lock

Reviews

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Mike T. September 22, 2014
Percussion · In studio
I have been a colleague of John's for 16 years and he has always impressed me with his constant dedication to the craft of music. Though he is incredibly talented, he has always been one that works hard and asks questions without fear. In my experience, this is the kind of person that makes the best teachers. He has always loved music, drums, all percussion and more recently has been learning so much about music technology and how to express yourself with any media available. It would be a shame to pass up an opportunity to study with him!
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Daniel P. August 24, 2014
Drum · In studio
I was pretty new to drumming when I first started taking lessons from John, and I could barely play a simple back beat. Long story short - within 6 months I was playing my first show!

I was looking for a teacher with both rock/jazz and classical background, so John fit the bill perfectly. He also knows a lot about Latin American percussion and other styles from around the world, and has a great understanding of how these different styles relate to each other and the various techniques which can be applied.

During the first few lessons, we discussed my background and aims, and came up with a solid plan for how I should proceed. John's broad experience was really helpful for this process. I had been playing guitar and piano for many years before I started on drums, so I already had a decent grounding in musicality and theory. We therefore focused mainly on technique during lessons. John has a real gift for explaining things in an easily understandable way, as well as going into detail when required. Whenever I had trouble with a particular technique, John's advice would help me overcome it. He is also very helpful in suggesting suitable exercises and repertoire. John also provides a private blog containing lesson notes and useful links, and he was also happy for me to record lessons, which I found very useful. With John's help, I was able to progress pretty quickly, and after 6 months I started playing in a band with some friends, which has been awesome fun.

John is super friendly and engaging, and this makes lessons with him great fun. As well as being a fantastic drummer, it is clear that he really cares about the quality of his lessons, and about his students. I'm sure he would make a great teacher for students of all ability/background. John, you rock! Thanks!
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Annie H. October 13, 2013
Drum
Verified Student
Great Musician & Great Teacher

My son started taking lessons with John when he was 7. During the past few months my son has become more aware of the music around him. He looks forward to drums every week. John has great patients and is amazing at connected with children. He is able to keep my son focused, which can be a hard task of itself. He offers instruction while still valuing the individual's personality and taste. John not only shares his knowledge and personal experiences, but his passion.

I would recommend John to anyone in a heartbeat.
Jessica W. Lafayette, CA

About Jessica

Hi! My name is Jessica and I would love to be your voice and/or piano teacher! I have been studying and performing classical music for 21 years. My relationship with music started at age 9 with the Contra Costa Children's Choir and I have maintained my classical vocal studies ever since. Along with my vocal studies, I studied classical piano privately with Keith Snell for 7 years, competing and achieving high marks in regional competitions. I went on to receive her Bachelor's degree in Music at Mannes College of Music in New York City and finished my education at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where I received my Masters, receiving training in vocal pedagogy and physiology, as well as vocal performance. I graduated from SFCM in 2009 and immediately began perusing both a ...

Reviews

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Christine G. April 28, 2014
Classical Voice
Verified Student
Patient and encouraging

I'm always impressed with how Jessica is patient with our 7 year old daughter and still is able to draw her out and motivate her when she is tired from school. Jessica always finds creative ways to be inspirational. Both my husband and I drive 15 miles to be able to have Jessica teach our little girl. We think she is worth it. She has been flexible and always tried her best to work within our schedule and has even driven out to our house to cover a lesson when things didn't work out in the schedule.
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Kellian D. March 11, 2014
Piano
Verified Student
Wonderful teacher

Jessica is teaching piano and voice to my 10 year daughter, and I am so impressed with her skills as a teacher. She is patient, encouraging, and inspiring, and her love for both music and teaching is apparent. She is also extremely knowledgeable about music theory and uses a teaching method that's very effective and gets students actually playing music right away, without shortchanging their long term development as musicians. Jessica is a rare find, plus she comes to our house for lessons!
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Jeannemarie H. February 27, 2014
Piano
Verified Student
Jessica is great with kids and makes music so much fun!

I have two girls, ages 9 and 6. They both take piano with Jessica once a week. I can't express enough how great Jessica is with them and her ability to adjust to their ages and their ways of learning.
Jessica is so passionate about music which is demonstrated in her teaching style and of course all her education, training, and performances.
Jessica is so wonderful in her communication - showing such support throughout the lesson and has a great ability to explain the music so they understand.
My girls are very fortunate to have such a great mentor and teacher. Jessica is a true professional who is fully committed to music. We could not be happier!
Kristen K. Berkeley, CA

About Kristen

My name is Kristen K. and I am an accomplished violinist and teacher from Lexington, Kentucky. I began my musical studies at age 7 and quickly discovered my passion and love for music. As a young musician, I attended numerous summer music festivals, participated in the Central Kentucky Youth Orchestra. I was a winner of two concerto competitions, which gave me the opportunity to perform solos with the youth orchestra. I continued my studies at the University of Kentucky as a Violin Performance major and it was there that I discovered my love for teaching music! After completing my performance degree, I decided to also pursue a Bachelor’s in Music Education. During my college career, I served as a teaching assistant in the University of Kentucky String Project, I taught group and private ...

Reviews

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Sheng H. January 19, 2015
Violin · In studio
Verified Student
She is really nice and sweet. I learned a lot from her and she always provide the best advice and material that can help me to solve my difficulties.
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Sam F. December 12, 2014
Violin · In studio
Verified Student
Kristen is a technically robust, patient and works with the student to ensure progress.
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Anthony Atthowe A. November 18, 2014
Viola · In studio
Verified Student
If I could write anything to hope that you choose Kristen to teach you, imagine it here: _______. That said. She is Amazing, Fantastic, Patient, Fun, Understand, did I say Patient!? I am a 28 year old man that is learning Viola as his "2nd" real instrument. I play piano well, and "campfire" guitar. Kristen is teaching me to read Alto clef and play the Viola. She is teaching at MY pace and not complaining when I come in without having the most practice time accomplished throughout the prior week. She has a flexible schedule and is available for communication (email and phone) between lessons (I've rescheduled many times because my work hours are not constant). She's Great! I hope you let her teach you! Thank you for reading.
Yonatan T. Berkeley, CA

About Yonatan

Yonatan recently graduated from UC Santa Cruz, with a B.A. in classical guitar and electronic music. Since then, he has been teaching music full-time both in large classes and to individuals. When he is not teaching, he is performing with one of his folk, blues, or rock bands. Yonatan has enjoyed teaching music for over 3 years. He teaches Guitar, Banjo, Mandolin, Accordion, Theory, Ukulele, and songwriting. Throughout his childhood his musical education was non-traditional, as he learned to play by listening to the musicians that inspired him, and aimed to replicate their playing while defining his own style. Later in his life, he understood the benefit of formal training, which led him to receive a B.A. in music. For this reason, Yonatan's lessons incorporate both ways he ...

Reviews

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Matt W. October 30, 2014
Guitar · In home
Verified Student
Yonatan is a fabulous teacher! He taught our 10 year old son beginning guitar and our 13 year old daughter advanced guitar and ukulele. He was a master at discovering our kids' interests and abilities and teaching them from where they were.He was very creative and motivating with our son, balancing his teaching by engaging our son in writing his own songs while also learning skills. Our daughter is more advanced and interested in playing others' songs and composing her own on guitar, ukulele, and piano - all of which Yona plays. Her playing and her confidence steadily improved with Yona's guidance. We highly recommend Yona for any age level. He is a kind and nurturing mentor and person.
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Roger F. October 27, 2014
Ukulele · In studio
Yona is awesome; not only a great musician but also can help a "rank beginner" like me. He is insightful, creative at helping me overcome various hurdles to learning how to play the Ukulele. He is a gem, and I highly recommend him for all levels of musical ability.
Thanks, Yona.
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Jessica S. December 18, 2013
Guitar
an amazing teacher for any level or age!

Yonatan has inspired my whole family into playing music. He is incredibly patient with my two children, who are each excited about learning both ukulele and banjo with him. I am taking guitar, and could not be more pleased with Yonatan's thoughtful and very effective approach to teaching. I have already improved so much and endorse him wholeheartedly.
Edgardo C. Oakland, CA

About Edgardo

Edgardo is a Percussionist, Vocalist, Educator and Band Leader with over 33 years of professional experience. A much in demand musician in the U.S.A. he has performed or recorded with artist like Jesus Chucho Valdes, Eddie Palmieri, Santana, Jerry Rivera, Keith Terry, Omar Sosa, Andy Narell, and Rebeca Mauleon among many others. He teaches at the Berkeley Jazz School Of Music as well as been a member of the SF Jazz Festival Educators roaster. An LP (Latin Percussion) instruments endorser, he has traveled world wide as an LP clinician. He leads the acclaimed multi-recording Salsa Band Candela,€ founded in 1987, and the 4tet "LaTiDo" both Bands are Bay Area favorites among Salsa dancers and Latin Jazz music lovers. *** Lesson Details *** Edgardo'€™s style of teaching is fun, ...

Reviews

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Nomad H. February 15, 2014
Percussion
Great Teacher

Edgardo is a patient, professional, and fun precussion teacher. I greatly appreciate his many years as a musician. He knows alot, and I enjoy his conga classes. Thanks for everything, Edgardo!!! Nomad Hayes
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John M. February 14, 2014
Percussion
Passionate teacher

I have enjoyed taking conga drum lessons from Edgardo the last few months. Edgardo brings many years of professional experience, attention to detail, vast amounts of patience, and a lively sense of humor to each lesson. He concentrates on the fundamentals while still making the lessons fun. Also Edgardo conveys the history of the instrument and the music as we tackle new rhythms. His passion for the instrument and teaching clearly show. I look forward to making a lot of progress on the conga drum this year with Edgardo's help.
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Bruce J. February 11, 2014
Percussion
Salsa musica a gozar!

More than an excellent teacher of technique and rhythm, Edgardo teaches music - the music of the drum and the music of playing conjunto in a band.
Ian R. Oakland, CA

About Ian

Since beginning his studies at age ten, Ian has been a prizewinner in several competitions throughout the country, and was the youngest guitarist selected to perform at Aspen Summer Music Festival in 2011. In 2014, he became the first guitarist to win the President’s Honor Competition, and had the opportunity to play in a showcase recital in Southern California, where he was given a presidential commendation. He has studied with and performed for some of the most prominent names in classical guitar, including Sharon Isbin of the Juilliard School, Yale University’s Benjamin Verdery, as well as Christopher Parkening at Pepperdine University. Ian currently attends the San Francisco Conservatory of Music on a merit scholarship, where he studies with David Tanenbaum.

Reviews

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Mitch K. March 30, 2015
Guitar · In studio
Verified Student
Ian was a great teacher with great humor with an improvisatory flow based on whatever I wanted to learn. I would definitely recommend to anyone.
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Adrianna P. December 30, 2014
Guitar · In home
Ian is great, totally awesome. He made me feel so comfortable and was very encouraging, despite my abilities as a beginner. There is nobody else I would have rather learned from, thanks Ian!
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Adrianna P. December 29, 2014
Guitar · In home
Ian is incredible, I mean, absolutely incredible. He made me feel comfortable and good about myself, even as someone with almost no guitar ability whatsoever. I was impressed by his guitar playing, but even more so with his ability to teach, he really is passionate about it and it shows. He tailored everything in the lessons to fit me, and I have really improved.

Thanks Ian, I couldn't have done it without you!

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