Charles Clarke

Charles C.

West Long Branch, NJ
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Lesson Details



Charles passed a background check that includes a SSN verification, national criminal record check, and sex offender registry search. Learn More
Charles delivers an exceptional lesson experience and ranks in the top 15% of our teachers nationwide.
Teaches students:
Ages 5+ and special needs

Teaching since:
January 1993

BA Music Theory and Composition from Rutgers College. MS from Montclair in Music Composition,
Jazz Studies with Kenny Baron. Composition Studies with Nicholas Rousakis, Frank Foster, Noel DaCosta.

Member Music Educators National Association.
Member Jersey Shore Music Educators Association
Member BMI

I am an experienced lifelong pianist. I work professionally as a solo pianist, church organist, choir director, piano teacher, composer and arranger. I am experienced in most styles of music including, classical, jazz, pop, gospel, Broadway and rock.

I develop an individual learning path for each of my students so they can achieve their musical goals. I use a variety of piano teaching methods and am not bound by any particular one. Depending upon my students level and goals I will supplement the methods books with pieces that interest the student.

*** Lesson Details ***
Depending upon the student lessons we will work on several areas designed to improve the students understanding of music and playing the piano.

1. How to practice efficiently,
2. Improving technique.
3. Weekly songs and pieces to learn.
4. Long range major works which will take several months to master
5. Sight reading
7. Music theory, harmony, rhythm and melody, which can be applied to all styles of music, popular song, classical, jazz, etc.
8. Understanding of music styles and composers

How much time we spend in each area will be determined by the students level and goals.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Kawai Grand 6' at Studio
Yamaha Digital Practice Piano
Yamaha PS-1500 Arranger Keyboard
Logic Pro 9 Recording Software
JV-1010 Synth Module
Roland VK-8M Organ Module
E-MU Hamond B3 Module
Focusrite 6i6 Audio Interface
JBL Studio Monitors
Macbook Pro

*** Travel Equipment ***
Each student must have a suitable weighted keyboard or piano at home for practice.

*** Specialties ***
Specialties Include:

Classical and Jazz

Jazz, Pop, Broadway and other Popular Forms

Songwriting and Arranging

Piano accompaniment

Developing a performance repertoire

Technique Development

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Band Leader
Dec 2017 - Present
The Big Dance Machine

Band Leader of eight piece Big dance Band playing regularly on the Jersey shore

Music Director
Apr 2008 - Present
Private Church

Directed Choir and performed weekly church services on piano and organ.

House Pianist
Oct 2001 - Present
Raven and the Peach Restaurant

Perform Jazz and Broadway Standards every Friday and Saturday

Music Director
Jan 2000 - Apr 2004
First Presbyterian Church

Directed Choir and performed weekly church services on piano and organ.

Church Organist
Sep 1986 - Jan 1997
St Dorothea's Parish

Played weekly mass services and worked and played for all youth activities and services

Director Of Retail Music Sales
Oct 1980 - Jul 1983
European American Music


Sep 1982 - Jun 1984
Montclair State University
BA Music
Sep 1975 - May 1980
Rutgers College
Piano Performance-Music Composition
Sep 1978 - May 1979
Berklee College Of Music


Professional Proficiency


Music Director
Apr 2009
Old First United Methodist Church

I am a music instructor and choir director at the oldest Methodist Church in NJ.


Garden State Music Performance
Apr 1975
PNC Arts Center


Music Teachers National Association
Jan 2013

The MTNA was founded in 1876 with the goal of advancing the value of music study and music-making to society while supporting the careers and professionalism of teachers of music. With nearly 22,000 members in 50 states—and more than 500 local affiliates—the MTNA is the preeminent source for music teacher support, where members embody like-minded values and commitment to their students, colleagues and society as a whole, while reaping the rewards of collaboration, continuity and connection throughout the lifetime of their careers.

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Broadcast Music Inc.
Jan 2012

One of three United States performing rights organizations, along with ASCAP and SESAC. It collects license fees on behalf of songwriters, composers, and music publishers and distributes them as royalties to those members whose works have been performed. In FY 2013, BMI collected more than $944 million in licensing fees and distributed $814 million in royalties.

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Photos & Videos

Alanna loves her piano lessons with Charlie Clarke
Charlie Clarke's 8 yr. old student plays Etude Em
Getting Ready to play another special event

Charlie is not only one of "The best Teacher's in Town" but, also the Band leader of numerous Nj based bands.
Charlie Clarke pianist practices too!

Charlie Clarke leads the chior

Another fun gig!

Charlie Clarke Playing Piano - Jazz and Popular
Charlie Clarke Appearing at The Breakers Hotel, Spring Lake, NJ
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10 Reviews

Write a Review
Hayden A. Jun 20, 2018
Piano · In studio

The first piano lesson was truly great! I am glad we found Charles.

Michael E. Apr 13, 2018
Piano · In home

Awesome - motivates my son, makes it fun. Knows how far to push him, keeps material current and enjoyable to pay.

Sharon B. Apr 14, 2017
Piano · In studio

I recommend Charles, he is a qualified instructor.

Linda J. May 8, 2015
Piano · In home

Charles is just great....there's no way I could have found a better teacher. Not only does he know everything there is to know about music, he's interested in keeping the lessons and learning interesting and fun. You can tell he really cares about trying to help his students to both progress, learn some theory, but to have fun and build skills they'll use/enjoy for a long time. Really impressive.

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John L. Feb 10, 2015
Jazz · In home

Charlie has been giving lessons to my son and is the absolute best! He is passionate about music and brings such energy to each lesson. My son is learning how to play jazz from Charlie after being classically trained. It has opened up a whole new world for him.

It great listening to the lessons because Charlie and my son enjoy music so much.

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Dawn J. Feb 9, 2015
Piano · In home

Charlie is the best piano teacher I have worked with. In just two months of taking lessons with him, I have learned myriads of info about music, theory, jazz, blues, and the classics. Being under his tutelage is truly an honor and he is patient with me even when I don't practice (Although I must say he's a real stickler for that). I would recommend anyone to him with a desire for music whether you are 5 or 55.

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Sherri E. Feb 5, 2015
Piano · In home

Charles Clarke is hands down the best, Piano teacher I have ever taken lessons from. His is concise and effective in his communication and I am excelling at a steady rate. Now I am even able to figure out chord progressions by listening to recordings all because he has taught me how chords are constructed. I would highly recommend him to anybody seeking a reliable, talented and professional instructor.

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Tony B. Feb 5, 2015
Piano · In home

Charles has done very well for our son. He has helped our 6-year old son progress quite a lot since we started last October. Our son enjoys having Charles as his teacher/

Amy S. Feb 5, 2015
Piano · In home

I have been taking piano lessons with Charlie for a year now.

As an adult learning piano for the first time, I was concerned that I find a teacher who could help teach an old dog new tricks.

Charlie is terrific! He has accommodated my learning style, tailoring each lesson to my capabilities. He is patient and fun, the two best traits you could want in a teacher.

A very enthusiastic recommend!

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Charles C. Jun 11, 2014
Piano · In home

Charles has been a wonderful piano teacher to my son. He is a gifted and skilled pianist. His knowledge and patience is evident at each lesson. We are lucky to have found him!

Cathy G

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