I started playing guitar in the 5th grade and in middle school began playing in rock groups. At the beginning of high school, I started teaching in some of the local music stores in the area. While wanting more from my playing, I started classical guitar lessons with an Andre Segovia student, Rani Cochran, and soon started lessons from Warren Nunes, a top jazz guitarist in the Bay Area. While continuing to take lessons in both types of music, I majored in Music at the local college. There I played in the jazz band and in guitar ensembles. After receiving my A.A. degree, I took classical guitar lessons with Larry Ferrara at the Conservatory of Music in San Francisco. At this point I transferred to San Jose State University and received a B.A. in guitar performance and a B.A. in Psychology, graduating with honors. My latest performing experience has been playing in the worship band at my church for the past several years. I enjoy teaching guitar and sharing what I’ve learned over the years of playing. We all never stop being students and learning new things on our instrument.
*** Lesson Details ***
Lessons are provided in a comfortable, fun environment and are private and on a weekly basis. Initially the student will complete a questionnaire before the first lesson to allow me to better understand what experiences the student has had with the guitar and with music in general. Additionally, I try to find out what groups and guitarists he or she likes. Finally, discuss what goals the student has or put another way, what he or she wants to do with the guitar. When we have completed the first lesson, I will better understand what the student’s playing level is and be able to provide a lesson plan based on that level and current experience. The lessons are tailored to each student’s capability and desire to play/practice. The lessons will be challenging but not “out of reach”. The student will feel successful and see the difference in playing within a relatively short time.
I will assess the student’s progress each week, by reviewing the previous week’s work. Based on the student’s progress, I will advance to new material or stay within the same material. The student and I will agree on how much time the student will devote to practicing each week. The student will keep a three ring notebook for adding handouts as they are given. I usually use a guitar book, to have structure, along with supplementary material that fills in the gaps. It is vital to practice on a regular basis in order to improve.
I provide teaching with patience and motivation. Being a parent of a child with ADHD (I homeschooled for one year), I incorporate learning from my parental experiences into lessons as needed. There have been several studies done that show how early music lessons have longtime benefits.
*** Studio Equipment ***
The studio lessons are taught in a music room upstairs with large windows facing the street with guitars, amps, a computer, stereo and seating. The house has 3 cats which are kept separate from lessons. Street parking and/or driveway if needed.
*** Specialties ***
I've taught rock, blues, jazz, classical, contemporary Christian, and music theory. I try to get my students to play along with CD's and listen to others playing what they want to learn. I draw material from the hundreds of books I have collected over the years.