John Butler
Arlington, VA
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John Butler

John B.

Arlington, VA
Profile-background-check Background Check
This teacher successfully passed a thorough criminal background check with SterlingBackcheck. This badge verifies trusted teacher status.
Profile-student-favorite Student Favorite
This teacher is rated in the top 15% of teachers in the specialty subject. This badge demonstrates subject mastery on a nationwide scale.
Teaching Locations:
Profile-location-online Online
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio
Teaching Locations:
Profile-location-online Online
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio
Levels taught:
Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
Learn how to play many styles of guitar, including Rock, Blues, Jazz, Country and Suzuki guitar. Through one on one instruction, students will learn scales, improvisation and solo phrasing, note reading, theory, chords and chord progressions. In addition, students will also learn how to play their favorite song/s, whether it be Led Zeppelin, Greenday, Wes Montgomery, Miles Davis or Stevie Ray Vaughn. Through the useful tools on line and the many great music software programs that are now available, students will find learning a song to be very easy and enjoyable.!

About John B.

I have been playing for about 35 years and teaching music and guitar for 25 years. I have a Bachelor of Music in Jazz and Classical guitar. I've taught at the University level and currently maintain a professional studio in Arlington, Virginia. I am very well versed in many different styles of music including, Rock, Blues, Jazz, Classical and Suzuki guitar. Students who decide to sign up with me, will have a lesson plan, a strategy for meeting their musical goals and will enjoy themselves in the process.

*** Lesson Details ***
Lessons are custom designed to meet the needs of every student, whether it is someone just starting out with the basics or for that seasoned player that wants to hone their professional skills. As a teacher, I consider myself easy going and laid back, with an emphasis on encouraging each student to do their very best.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Guitar, instruments, keyboards recording equipment, waiting room, seating for parents

*** Travel Equipment ***
Music stand, foot stool, cables.- Teacher
Own instrument, amplifier if needed, notebook.-Student

*** Specialties ***
I have been teaching for about 25 years and am well versed in Jazz, Classical, Rock, Blues and Country genres. I focus on anything from note reading, theory, improvisation and composing.

Reviews

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5.0
93 Reviews
5
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Basma E.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is a great teacher and musician, he is really patient and professional, I enjoy every class.

Posted May 17, 2020
Handy L.
Profile-location-online Online

Posted May 12, 2020
Ken M.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

Enjoying my lessons. John understands my questions and answers them thoroughly. Has many materials at hand for the student.

Posted Mar 21, 2020
Suveer
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is a fantastic teacher! I'm excited to schedule more lessons with him in the future!

Posted Mar 1, 2020
Tara
Profile-location-home Student's Home

John is great! super personable and tailors a short lesson towards your specific goals. 10/10 would recommend!

Posted Feb 14, 2020
Johnny
Profile-location-home Student's Home

John is the man! I've only had three lessons thus far, but have learned a ton. He is very knowledgeable, and has done a great job catering to my skill level (intermediate).

Posted Feb 5, 2020
Karen S.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is an excellent teacher. I’m a real beginner, and , instead of acting bored with my level of “playing”, he was very encouraging. His instruction is clear and precise. He had me transitioning between four different chords in my first half hour! So pleased!

Posted Nov 21, 2019
Jane
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

It was a No-Pressure first lesson so I’m looking forward to the next one.

Posted Nov 14, 2019
STEPHANIE
Profile-location-home Student's Home

I love my lessons with John. He is patient and knows what he’s doing. I have learned so much already in a short amount of time. I look forward to each lesson every week.

Posted Nov 8, 2019
Anne S.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

We couldn't ask for more. John was very kind, fun, patient - perfect fit for our 12 yo daughter, beginner to guitar.

Posted Sep 27, 2019
Matt
Profile-location-home Student's Home

John is a great teacher and a kind man

Posted Aug 20, 2019
James S.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Very good!

Posted Jul 8, 2019
Trung D.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is very friendly. The first lesson with him, he makes me feel so comfortable, and most importantly, confident that I can achieve my goal. Thanks John.

Posted Jun 10, 2019
Jeanette Abellera
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Great first class. Very relaxed teaching style.

Posted May 16, 2019
Amrit
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is extremely patient and the past few seasons have been very good. I'd definitely suggest him to anyone who lives in the area.

Posted Apr 12, 2019
Karen ..
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is exactly the kind of teacher I need and was looking for. He made it fun, and I felt like I learned more in my first lesson with him than I had in all my prior lessons combined. Already looking forward to my next lesson!

Posted Apr 6, 2019
Sarah M.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is very accommodating of my schedule and always provides me with new tips to advance my skills. He’s super cool. 100% recommend.

Posted Mar 28, 2019
Jeanne G.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

I have been taking guitar lessons from John for several years. He is an excellent instructor, and is very patient and knowledgeable. I am challenged every week and have learned so much from him. I highly recommend John as an instructor for guitar and for the other instruments he teaches.

Posted Mar 16, 2019
Bryon H.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John was great and very knowledgeable. He is a no-nonsense teacher who calmly and steadily aides in your journey toward learning the guitar. Thank you, John!

Posted Feb 19, 2019
Daniel C.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John has been very patient and caring. I have learned so much from such a talented guy. Thank again John

Posted Jan 30, 2019
Marcus
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

.

Posted Jan 10, 2019
Jeanne G.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Fantastic Instructor! I have been taking guitar lessons from John for multiple years. He is an excellent instructor and also very patient. I have learned a ton from him and have had a great time playing guitar.

Posted Jan 10, 2019
Ross
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is super patient and incredibly helpful, especially for a hard-headed adult like me. I've been playing guitar for about 15 years and have made very slow progress on my own. John is helping me unlock the missing pieces. Thank you, sir!

Posted Nov 29, 2018
Steve
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Very patient.

Posted Oct 4, 2018
Daniel C.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is very patient and knowledgeable

Posted Sep 6, 2018
Sara
Profile-location-home Student's Home

Johns great. I wasn’t sure which instrument to begin and after mandolin lesson number 1... I showed up at his studio with a guitar. Lots of fun and he has lots of patience.

Posted Jul 12, 2018
Bob
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John has been teaching me chords, which are very difficult on the mandolin. He's an excellent teacher.

Posted Jul 9, 2018
Min
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is a very good teacher. He figured out my learning ability and interest level quickly in the first lesson, and covers the material as much as I can handle In short 30 minute lessons. I leave each lesson with enough work to go over and practice in the coming week. He makes Ukulele learning fun and easy.

Posted Apr 21, 2018
Lisa C.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is an excellent teacher; he is able to adapt the way he teaches to your learning style and teaches theory and techniques through songs. He finds ways to develop the skills you are seeking and is always encouraging and (very!) patient. Finally, he keeps the lessons fun!

Posted Apr 3, 2018
Mary Beth H.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

John is a great teacher—very patient with me as a beginner in the classical guitar. I highly recommend him as a teacher!

Posted Feb 19, 2018
Curtis H.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

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!

Posted Jan 19, 2018
Kent
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Knowledgeable. Excellent corrective feedback. Appropriately challenging. Highly recommend.

Posted Jan 9, 2018
John
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

First lesson helped to get a solid footing and decide what course to take with the lessons.

Posted Dec 29, 2017
Anton W.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Very patient and skilled instructor.

Posted Dec 22, 2017
Sophia L.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

John has been a great and patient teacher for my 7yo daughter. She’s learning to sight read, music theory and rhythm :)

Posted Dec 10, 2017
Andrew H.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is a patient and encouraging instructor. He was easily able to meet my needs and requests for different aspects of learning the guitar. Definitely recommend him to students seeking good guidance.

Posted Dec 8, 2017
Sopha
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Very easy-going and chooses great music to use. I love taking lessons from him.

Posted Sep 7, 2017
Chris
Profile-location-home Student's Home

John is great. I really enjoy my ukulele lessons with him.

Posted Jul 14, 2017
Nelson T.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John was awesome he know exactly how to take me step by step with my very first lesson with the guitar, no rush and patient and showing me the propher steps. Can't wait to move onto the next lesson.

Posted Jul 1, 2017
Binh
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is a seasoned teacher and player. He is soft-spoken and patient; my two girls (13 and 16) don't feel intimidated or fearful and really enjoy their lessons. He challenges them and provides just enough push for proper progression. John is very effective and I highly recommend him.

Posted Apr 30, 2017
Sophia
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Great instruction that is understandable and positive. As a beginner I want to learn and have fun-- John does exactly that.

Posted Jan 23, 2017
Kamel Z.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

I like John. Higly recommend him to any guitar lover!

Posted Dec 20, 2016
Namon J.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

John, what does your schedule look like on Saturday. Would like to begin my winter schedule with the Best Teacher in Town.

Posted Dec 13, 2016
Tim
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Just finished my third lesson and I am impressed. I am essentially a beginner, and John took me through basic chords and scales, challenging me accordingly, but at the same time making it fun. John is a great teacher - very capable, extremely patient. I feel fortunate to be learning from John!

Posted Oct 16, 2016
mike
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Able to coach along a student with absolutely no talent - and make it fun.

Posted Aug 10, 2016
Tammy
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

very patient and informative. I would definately recomend this instructor.

Posted Jul 18, 2016
Tammy
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

he was patient; attentive, took his time to show me the chords, explain the guitar. I have never played before, and didn't know the first thing about it. He showed me how to tune the guitar, I look forward to my next lessons.

Posted Jul 1, 2016
Andy
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Would give 6 stars if it was an option. John is an awesome guitar teacher

Posted Jun 29, 2016
John H.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

Great instructor. I'm making progress!

Posted Jun 18, 2016
David Rapp
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John's a great teacher!

Posted Jun 13, 2016
Joshua K.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John was a great instructor. Friendly, encouraging, and great at demonstrating techniques.

Posted Jun 3, 2016
Sharon B.

I am a 53 year old student learning how to play bass guitar. John is an excellent instructor & teacher! I began playing "Louie Louie"& "The eye of the Tiger" in the 1st session. Awesome!!!!

Posted May 29, 2016
Pete S.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Unlimited patience! And that's on top of seriously knowing the instrument -- and how to get a rank beginner like me to play it. (Sort of. :) Highly recommended!

Posted May 12, 2016
david-sanchez2010@hotmail.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

I love how I am learning everything j want to learn thanks to John

Posted Apr 29, 2016
Courtney W.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

He's patient & cued-in-on what the client wants. He "gets it".
Example, I want to learn certain songs & not begin lessons from the beginning. Ergo, he does this, but, isn't reluctant, to suggest a what's helpful to do this.

Posted Apr 22, 2016
Amer C.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

helpful tips for learning scales and mastering fretboard

Posted Apr 12, 2016
John
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Great first lesson. Looking forward to next one.

Posted Apr 11, 2016
Arta S.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is a cool dude with a rude 'tude. He was very positive and encouraging for my first lesson.

Posted Mar 23, 2016
Jeanne G.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

My guitar lessons with John have been terrific. John is very knowledgeable, encouraging and patient. He makes the lessons enjoyable while learning. I would recommend him to other students interested in learning to play the guitar.

Posted Mar 4, 2016
Jaclyn L.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Brand new to music and John was very patient and encouraging with me.

Posted Jan 14, 2016
Andy Symonds
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is a great teacher. Patient and knowledgable, he'll get you playing tunes in no time.

Posted Jan 8, 2016
Andy Symonds
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John is a great teacher. Patient and knowledgable, he'll get you playing tunes in no time.

Posted Jan 7, 2016
Sameer
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John's been great so far--very knowledgable and willing to change pace/style/material to suit te student's needs and preferences. I will be re-upping!

Posted Dec 2, 2015
Seth P.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

Great.

Posted Nov 25, 2015
Jason S.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John's very relaxed and patient, and did a great job listening to my objectives and matching exercises to my skill level. I'm looking forward to continuing to work with him.

Posted Aug 26, 2015
Gabrielle L.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Just had one class with John and I learned a lot. Very passionate about music and patient with my elementary skills!

Posted Aug 12, 2015
Don B.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

John has been great! He is very patient and always constructive. I leave every lesson with renewed enthusiasm.

Posted Aug 11, 2015
Christopher B.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Talented musician and great listener.

Posted Aug 4, 2015
Brandon G.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

John is a fantastic teacher. After my first lesson I am confident he was the right choice. He made the lesson very fun and enjoyable and we even had a short jam session which was a ton of fun. I would highly recommend him and his teaching style. Looking forward to continuing lesson.

Posted Jun 10, 2015
Nicole D.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Very productive! Happy with the experience and looking forward to upcoming lessons

Posted May 15, 2015
Melvin C.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

If there was anyway to give John 6 stars I would! John is the best teacher and also a really great guy all around. John is very knowledgeable and I learned a lot from my lessons with him. John is a very patient instructor which helped make the lessons better. I would be remiss not to mention his cool cat Mr. Buttons who would often come down just to listen in on our lessons and even the occasional jam session we would have afterwards. Thank you for all that you do John!

Posted Feb 18, 2015
Garari M.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

Great Teacher! I look forward to continuing to progress with my playing.

Posted Nov 26, 2014
Kate S.
Profile-location-home Student's Home

John is an amazing teacher and an extremely talented musician. He is very patient and a great motivator. I highly recommend him :)

Posted Oct 20, 2014
Amanda L.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Sign up for classes with John. Just do it, and you won't regret it.

Whatever the opposite of musically-gifted is, that is what I am. I'm an adult beginner in the truest sense of the word - never read sheet music, couldn't hold a beat to save my life, and hadn't played an instrument. EVER. That's why I'm still amazed that I've learned to play a couple of simple songs after a few lessons with John - it's a great achievement on his part!

John has the patience of a saint and a great ability to teach. If I don't understand a concept or have difficulty contorting my fingers to hold a certain chord, he shows me a different way and can break it down to simpler terms. He's really a great teacher. On top of that, he's laid back, approachable, amiable, and very understanding of my busy work schedule. He makes sure I leave each lesson with enough homework to practice and gives me constructive criticism to work on my technique. Like another reviewer said, John is really worth his weight in gold!!

Posted Oct 8, 2014
Matthew M.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

After only a few lessons, I feel that John is an excellent teacher. He is incredibly knowledgeable and teaches in a way that is easy to understand. He selects pieces for me to practice that are both challenging and fun. I enjoy the lessons very much and would recommend John to anyone.

Posted Jun 26, 2014
Melvin C.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Worth His Weight In Gold!!!

I've been taking lessons with John for over a year now and I've learned so much from his teachings. He has a way of making you feel at home and relaxed during the lesson. I'm partial to playing the Blues but, he has taught me how to relate the different scales to the different types of music.

At this time I'm learning how to read music and understand the theory behind it. The stage that I am at it comes down to practice. If I put in the practice I will be ready to play for that Jazz/Blues band that I so desire.

At the end of my lesson with John, he always find time for us to have a "jam session" be it Pink Floyd's "Money", Eric Clapton's "Sunshine of Your Love", or some good ole' down home "Blues", we get it done! John is a great teacher, musician, instructor and is as advertised!

Melvin C.

Posted Jun 12, 2014
John R.

John is a patient and knowledgeable instructor that is easy to work with. He is flexible with lesson planning and he really listens to what the student wants and needs. I believe John is an exceptional music instructor.

Posted May 29, 2014
Lida S.

A Great Teacher

John is a great teacher, encouraging, knowledgeable and flexible. I would recommend him for any level of lessons.

Posted Apr 5, 2014
Ed P.

Provided quick tips that helped me immediately

John is a great one-on-one instructor. I had taken an 8-week, beginner guitar, group lesson through Arlington County, but almost nothing was said about how we were holding our hands or holding the guitar. Several quick suggestions from John improved my ability to practice immediately. He is friendly, easy-going, and has kept up my interest by virtue of what he sends me home with to practice for the next lesson. I don't think one can go wrong taking lessons from John.

Posted Feb 25, 2014
Sue P.

John Butler is a great teacher

John is an excellent teacher. He is very knowledgeable about the guitar and the technical aspects of music, and he is also very personable and encouraging. When I started lessons with John last summer I had been playing the guitar for over 30 years, and feel I have learned a tremendous amount from him.

I would recommend him for any level of lessons. He's a great guy!

Posted Feb 8, 2014
krishna P.

Could not ask for more..Fantastic teacher!

As someone who knew nothing about playing/reading music of any sort, I find myself recognizing and playing a few chords and notes just after about 10 classes! All thanks to John. I agree with the other reviewer that he truly has the patience of a saint. He is very laid back and helps me learn at my own pace while enjoying myself throughout the process irrespective of how much practice I put in. Whole heartedly recommend John for learning the guitar. Thanks very much John. You are the best!

Posted Feb 5, 2014
Rebecca R.

Great teacher

John is an extremely patient and positive teacher. He is exactly what my son needs. He is encouraging and funny and the lesson with him just flies by. My son, who is not quite six, is already playing many notes and chords and reading music after just two months. I whole-heartedly recommend John.

Posted Jan 29, 2014
John D.

Enjoying Guitar Lessons

John does a great job teaching me how to play the guitar. He focuses on form, which is important and is patient when I don't get something quite right. If you are looking for a qualified, friendly and professional instructor give him a try.

Posted Oct 28, 2013
Mandy H.

guitar lessons review

John is patient and he makes learning the guitar fun! His instruction is very encouraging and my son was playing music from the first lesson! We are 100% happy with our choice to go with John!

Posted May 20, 2013
Renee A.

Very patient and supportive

As an 'older' student, John is great in understanding the time contraints of an adult. He is very patient and never makes one feel like a naughty teenager if not enough time was spent on practice. After a few months I am really starting to have fun with the lessons and look forward to branching into different areas.
John is the best, you cant go wrong with him as your teacher.

Posted May 6, 2013
Melvin C.

A Great Musician and Bass Guitar Instructor!

Jon is one of the best instructor's I've come to know. Although I've only been taking lessons from him since February 2013; he has proven to be a true musician and a great teacher. His teaching style is relaxed which removes the pressure from learning how to play which allows you to absorb more instruction. He instills confidence in you while you're trying to play the instrument which motivates you to want to learn more. We even have a "jam" session at the end of my lesson which is really fun. I enjoy taking lessons from Jon and am sure that every who does (and plan to) share the same feeling. Good job Jon!

Posted May 2, 2013
JANET Y.

Stress Free and Tailored to You

John provides balanced lessons tailored to your level and how much you want to work. Learning music fundamentals and songs are seamlessly mixed. He has a laid back style, which is great.

Posted Apr 18, 2013
Rick P.

John is one of the best instructors I have seen...for any subject.

John has a teaching presence, especially with children, which is amazing; he is patient, enthusiastic and very encouraging. As a professional musician, he knows his trade and he has the uncanny ability to share his knowledge in a way that makes perfect sense.

I would recommend John as an instructor for any, and all, levels of instruction.

Posted Mar 1, 2013
Carlos A.

Excellent instructor.

Very patient teacher. He has the patience of a Saint.
Great progress.

Posted Feb 13, 2013
Namon J.

My lessons

John is cool. His teaching ability is exceptional. Plus he can really teach and more importantly play my genre of music which is Jazz.

Posted Feb 13, 2013
Susan M.

I plan to continue lessons in the future

The 45 minute lesson just flies by! John is friendly, inspiring, has a great sense of humor and is very patient.

Posted Feb 1, 2013
TuanL

John B. is a great instructor. Thank you.

Posted Jul 26, 2012
YbonyM

Great lessons

I am enjoying my lessons with John, he is knowledgeable and the time seems to fly by. I feel I have already learned a lot from John.

Posted Jul 16, 2012

Experience

Guitar Instructor
Sep 2004 - May 2009

Mary Washington University

Taught privately as an adjunct faculty member. Responsible for guitar instructions in Classical and Jazz guitar. Students were instructed in note reading, theory, improvisation and appropriate classical and jazz guitar repertoire.

Guitar Instructor
Sep 1989 - Dec 1999

College of Southern Maryland

Taught privately as well as group guitar instructions for 10 years. Responsible for building a guitar program, maintaining and instructing students in the areas of guitar performance, guitar studies in Classical and Jazz guitar, note reading, improvisation and music theory.

Education

Bachelor of Music
Sep 1992 - May 1996

Howard University

Languages

English

Fluent / Native Proficiency

Affiliations

Music Teachers National Association
Sep 1996
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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