John Sanders

John S.

Collierville, TN
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Lesson Details



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

Teaching since:
August 1988

I have been teaching young people and adults how to play musical instruments for over 20 years. A lot of my students are well on their way to a rewarding future with music, some as professionals and others as hobbyists. In addition to being a teacher, I am also a professional performer who has worked in a wide variety of styles and I have a Masters degree in music composition and theory.

One of my main specialties is working with very young students and total beginners. There is a special skill to teaching young children that can only be developed through experience. For the older student, or the student who already has a musical background my specialty is helping you learn the styles that have always been of most interest to you. I can also help older students gain a broad understanding of music through some basic music theory.

*** Lesson Details ***
I can teach piano or keyboard to beginners and up to advanced students. On guitar and woodwinds I can teach beginners and up to intermediate level students.
My teaching style is fairly relaxed and very positive, but I will try to keep the lessons on a course that is going to benefit you the most.

For younger piano students and beginners I prefer the Alfreds piano system. The songs in the Alfreds books allow for immediate playing and note reading without any tedious memorization. The beginner books contain a lot of fun songs that kids really gravitate toward. For older students I try to gear the lessons toward whatever musical style you prefer. For students who have only had traditional piano lessons I can teach you how to read pop and jazz chord charts, as well as how to turn those chord charts into fully arranged music. I can also teach improvisation and the skills that are required to play specific styles of music in a professional band.

For my younger guitar students I have a variety of beginner material I have collected over the years, but for my older students I prefer to work on songs of their choice.
My beginner woodwind students will work with a Yamaha method book, while older students can learn improvisation and theory if they like.

I also can lead Orff styled tuned percussion ensembles. The Orff style of music performance allows for students from entirely mis-matched musical backgrounds to play music together, even on their first day of class.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Professional digital piano, many other keyboards, guitar, bass guitar, saxophone, flute, and four Orff tuned percussion instruments. I also have a comfortable seating area for parents, guests or observers.

*** Travel Equipment ***
I can provide multiple keyboards, a guitar, saxophone, flute and 4 Orff style tuned percussion instruments, as well as countless books and literature.

*** Specialties ***
I play keyboards professionally in jazz, RnB, rock, reggae, Latin rock and other styles. I can help the student who has only had traditional lessons branch out and learn how to read chord charts, which in turn teaches them theory.
I am a certified Orff teacher as well.

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Music Teacher
Jan 2016 - Present
Incarnation Catholic School

Teach after-school keyboard lessons.

Music teacher
Aug 2005 - Present
University of Memphis Campus School

Conduct after school keyboard classes.

Music teacher
Aug 2005 - Present
CTK Lutheran School, Memphis TN

Conduct after school music programs for young people learning keyboards, saxophone, flute or guitar.

Aug 1980 - Present
Several Memphis area bands

I have played in a wide variety of professional bands over the years performing RnB, rock, reggae, jazz, blues and other styles.
Some of the artists I have worked with in the Memphis area include: C C Hill, Bobby Lawson, Steve and Patty Harper (Faultline), Memphis Blues Society Jam Band, Lisa G, Dee Stone, Crazyflame, Jim Duckworth, The Memphis Snake Doctors, The Rustenhaven Band, Zazerac, Energy D, The Panther Burns and more.

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Masters degree
Aug 1981 - Aug 1983
University of Memphis
Bachelors degree
Aug 1977 - Dec 1979
Texas A&M at Commerce


Fluent / Native Proficiency


Orff certified
Jul 2005
University of Memphis

Received training in conducting Orff music classes.


Grant: Ensemble music for children
Sep 2006
Fayette county, TN


Music Teachers National Association
Aug 2016

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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Photos & Videos

Cullen improvising to his own composition.
Emily performing "In the Hall of the Mountain King".
Garrett Performing "The Ocean"
Syl performing "Mercy Mercy".
Performing "Mr. Magic" with my trio
Duet with Emily at an after-school performance

17 Reviews

Write a Review
Robert G. Oct 9, 2018
Piano · In studio

John is very knowledgeable, experienced, and friendly. He seems to work well with children.

Elsie J. Aug 6, 2018
Piano · In home

Great first lesson with John, he was patient and gave them goals to work for!

Eoin (Owen) M. Feb 18, 2018
Piano · In home

My son is enjoying his lessons so far and really thinks John is very nice. He makes my son feel at ease and confident. We are very glad we found John!

Chris Aug 19, 2016
Piano · In studio

John does a great job and gets along great with the kids.

Pat S. May 9, 2016
Piano · In studio

John was very good and very patient. I really think I am going to love this

Carter Mar 1, 2016
Piano · In studio

John is a great teacher! This was my son's first piano lesson last night. He enjoyed it and also learned quite a bit during the half-hour session. My other son has been taking guitar lessons from John for over two years, and he has been a pleasure to work with during this time. We highly recommend him for lessons of various instruments!

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Matthew Marley Feb 16, 2016
Guitar · In studio

Very helpful. Lots of progress in a short period of time.

Eunice H. Jan 18, 2016
Piano · In studio

Great teacher! Extremely patience. Knew how to keep my son interested and engaged during his lesson. He loves playing the piano now.

Abby D. Sep 8, 2015
Piano · In studio

I recently decided to get back into piano after not having played since I was much younger and started adult lessons with John and I've had a great experience so far! We started from the beginning and we've made some good progress! He's personalized my lessons so we've been able to skip most of the children's songs and melodies. I'm excited to continue my lessons!

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Ed M. Mar 31, 2015
Piano · In studio

My 9 year old son came from School of Rock, which was organized chaos, to now where John has implemented a real strategy for him to learn faster and to focus on reading notes. My son has retained his interest and is excelling under John's guidance. I would highly recommend John for students of all ages.

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Dreanna A. Jun 10, 2014
Guitar · In studio

John is Awesome! John adjusts his training style to the needs of the student and encourages along the way! After three lessons I honestly feel this is something I plan on pursing for the long run!

CharlesC Apr 4, 2012


John have been very friendly and patient person .. He can teach my son a great music .. I am looking forward to see my son gets alot of skills and be a pro rock star!!

ChrisE Jul 25, 2011

John is very helpful. I'm learning a lot.

KimE Jul 1, 2011

Parent and students.

We sincerely enjoy Mr. John's teaching style. He is fantastic!As of now, we will be re-upping in September.Thanks!

EuniceH Jun 26, 2011

He is doing a great job. We are impressed with how he is able to maintain the interest of our 4 year old for half an hour. Thanks.

GregT Mar 22, 2011

Rewarding Lessons

John does a great job of shaping lessons that are fun and rewarding and building upon what I've learned. I am amazed at how much he has helped me progress in just a few lessons.

BillL Jan 5, 2011

Learning guitar late in life

I've learned more in 3 sessions with John then I learned in 3 months watching how to videos and trying to read how to books. John takes a simplistic approach to teaching guitar and makes practicing fun.

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